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Can Seattle Save the World?

Rainbow Flower pinwheel

Rainbow Flower pinwheel

No, of course not. Don’t be silly.

But Seattle folks, and many like-minded others throughout the Northwest, are actually crazy enough to believe they can do something to make the world a better place.

Yeah, we should probably talk about this.

And we will, on the evening of April 26, at Seattle Town Hall, with you and a panel of our leading local experts who are working to reduce disease and poverty around the world.

We’ll explore what I am calling, for the sake of debate (and I do like a good debate), the “Seattle approach” to saving the world. Bill Foege, the man who figured out how to rid the world of smallpox, Chris Elias, president at PATH, UW health activist Wendy Johnson and Theo Chocolate founder Joe Whinney.

Chocolate? Yeah, chocolate and disease and poverty. You’ll see.

Obviously, a big reason for our community’s constant chatter of can-do, humanitarian global optimism is because the 8,000-lb. gorilla in the do-gooder universe happens to be located here — the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

The folks at the Gates Foundation — which is perhaps now the most influential player in global health and certainly one of the leaders in many anti-poverty efforts — like to say they are impatiently optimistic. We’ll take a look at both the reasons for the impatience and the optimism.

Other questions we will explore:

  • What’s special about Seattle’s approach to fighting poverty?
  • Does charity, or any kind of humanitarian effort, really work?
  • Why does poverty exist and can we get rid of it?
  • How can fighting disease help in the fight against poverty?
  • Is this the next big thing for young people — a dot.compassion revolution rather than just another

And any question you bring to the forum.

Come join us for a celebration and examination of what may be a revolution in process, a revolution in how we look at poverty, inequity and, well, the rest of the world. The Humanosphere.

For more info on the event and to purchase tickets, go to Brown Paper Tickets.


About Author

Tom Paulson

Tom Paulson is founder and lead journalist at Humanosphere. Prior to operating this online news site, he reported on science,  medicine, health policy, aid and development for the Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Contact him at tom[at] or follow him on Twitter @tompaulson.