Loren Deron (she/her)
has worked in therapeutic communities for 7 years and is the House Manager for Soteria House, Vermont. Loren is currently at graduate school for Clinical Mental Health Counseling at Antioch University where she is studying trauma and resilience. Loren deeply values peer support and its capacity for transforming individuals and communities.
Vincenzo Passante (he/him)
has been a service user, volunteer, and intern in a city with an internationally recognised mental health system with no locked doors nor restraint: Trieste in Italy. There Vincenzo also studied Psychology at post-graduate level and qualified as a Psychologist. He later moved to the UK where he worked in different mental health settings, including crisis services.
Vincenzo's dismay with the institutional structure of the UK system led him to start a podcast: "A place of safety?" where he tries to highlight how things can change for the better.
Wilda L. White is a psychiatric survivor and Mad activist who is most recently the founder of MadFreedom, a civil and human rights advocacy organization based in Vermont whose mission is to secure political power to end the discrimination and oppression of people based on perceived mental state. Wilda previously served as executive director of Vermont Psychiatric Survivors (VPS).
Before her tenure at VPS, Wilda was the inaugural executive director of the Thelton E. Henderson Center for Social Justice at the University of California Berkeley School of Law, a name partner in a San Francisco litigation law firm, assistant city editor at the Miami Herald during the time the newspaper won a Pulitzer Prize for Public Service, and a management consultant with McKinsey & Company.
Wilda speaks and writes frequently on issues of Mad liberation, particularly at the intersection of racism. Her most recent publication is Re-writing the Master Narrative: A Pre-requisite for Mad Liberation. In 2018, she delivered the keynote at the Alternatives conference at Catholic University of America in Washington, DC., and in 2019, she delivered the keynote at the Peerpocalypse Conference in Salem, Oregon.
Wilda earned a law degree from the University of California Berkeley School of Law and an MBA, with distinction, from Harvard University Graduate School of Business Administration. She is licensed to practice law in New York, California, and Massachusetts. A competitive squash player, she has won tournaments in the United States and internationally. Wilda lives in Poultney, Vermont with Marley, her black Lab.