Board of Directors
Liz Gannon Graydon is Co-Founder and President of What BETTER Looks Like, a nonprofit organization that taps into the creative potential of people to help solve problems in their local communities. Liz taught middle school Social Studies and English for 16 years. It was during her years as a teacher that she gained the inspiration and the tools for the work of What BETTER Looks Like. The core work is to foster the development of Beloved Community. She has worked with Hour Children, a New York organization that works to support incarcerated women and their families. As part of her work there, she developed a program to support the teenage children of incarcerated mothers. She has facilitated peacebuilding programs for the NY Department of Peace campaign, The Council for Prejudice Reduction, Miracle Corners of the World and What BETTER Looks Like at C.W. Post, Pace University, Nassau Community College, SUNY Farmingdale, the Church Center for the United Nations and with local school and community organizations. Understanding that the fastest way to change the world is to change the stories that we tell, her focus is to facilitate circles and workshops that help us connect at the deepest level of our stories. Liz also hosts a weekly tea party in New York’s Bryant Park, where all are welcome to gather and share tea, treats and an experience of Beloved Communi-tea.
Terry actively joined The Peace Alliance in 2005 as District Team Lead, and then Southern California State Coordinator, becoming a member of the Board in 2009. Her passion for peace stems from a desire commonly felt by many — to leave a better world for future generations. Growing up in activism, her parents were focused towards environmental and historical preservation goals, in addition to the arts. Terry views her activism for peace as all-encompassing, honoring those foundational areas and more, finding a place for that fundamental desire that is practical, concrete and productive.
Having enjoyed a few different careers, beginning as a performer touring with ANNIE, 42nd STREET and CATS, then co-owning a boutique relocation consulting firm in Chicago, she now works as an Agile Coach at Accenture in Business Agility. She also coaches clients privately with Coach for Connection, www.coachforconnection.com. Her wonderful and creative husband, Paul Chepikian, is an actor, www.chepikian.com. Terry and Paul live in Encino, CA with their dog, Biscuit.
Justin Bensan has been involved with the Peace Alliance since 2008, when he joined as the Los Angeles City Organizer for the Student Peace Alliance. He is most interested in how communities, particularly in urbanized metropolitan areas, can thrive peacefully and harmoniously. He believes that nobody should feel like they have to move out of their own neighborhood to gain economic stability and physical safety, and that we should all love —and feel like we belong to— the place that we call home.
His professional pursuits have been in social media and experiential marketing, particularly in local government and place management. He was the first person to run the City of Boston’s official Twitter account back in 2012, arguing that they interact directly with municipal citizens online, while working at the Mayor’s Office of Constituent Services. He sees social media as a tool to connect people, institutions, and communities with one another.
He now lives in Washington, DC where he is the Social Communications Manager for the Rosslyn Business Improvement District, a neighborhood just across the river from the nation’s capital. Justin holds a B.A. in Political Science with a Minor in Urban Studies from Northeastern University. His love of architecture, culture, food, and transportation pushes him to travel as often as he can.
Pete Addicott, retired President of Inter-Connect, a Human Relations Consulting group, provides networking avenues to groups and individuals. Most recently, he led a workshop on Mission, Goals and Leadership with the Board of an Alzheimer’s Facility. He humanitarian efforts led to connections for the delivery, set up and distribution of water desalinization units during the Haiti crisis.
Mr. Addicott has spent 25 years with Federal Express in management positions in Training and Development. He established the Management Training and Career Development programs for FedEx, wrote the initial Team Building manuals for staff development for the company, headed integrated training for Flying Tigers and managed Training for the Southeast area of the United States, Latin and South America. As a Special Projects Executive for FedEx, he managed the Steering Committee on the local United Way Board, supported FedEx’s efforts with the Memphis PGA tour and reviewed integration training material for the Kinko’s/FedEx merger.
In the last six years, he has served on the Community Foundation Board, United Way of Memphis agency review and Regional Special Olympics Track and Field, and the University of Maine Farmington board. His volunteer interests are in Intergenerational Communication through Storytelling, Organizing and Conducting Storytelling Festivals in Maine and Tennessee, Financial Stabilization Systems through Community Building, church activities, singing with a semi professional coral, a little golf (very little) and spending time with his grandchildren.
He holds an M. Ed. from Springfield College in Springfield, MA.
Matthew is a Founding member and has served in various roles over the years. Prior to The Peace Alliance, Matthew worked as Managing Director of the Global Renaissance Alliance and on various campaigns to help create a more just and sustainable world. He is a Huffington Post blogger and the author ofLiving Out Loud! Young Adults, Finding our Purpose, Shaping a Better World and Nourish Your Self Whole.
He has a B.A. in psychology from Sonoma State University in California, focusing on Ecopsychology. He also has an M.A. in Humanities and Leadership with a focus on Culture, Ecology and Sustainable Community from New College of California.
RJ is a passionate leader, executive coach and development consultant. He has dedicated his life’s work to motivating others to move deeper into their desire to affect sustainable change. Working with business executives, teams and community leaders in Silicon Valley, South Africa, Australia and across the US, RJ inspires others to access answers from within, and in doing so, helps to identify practices that cultivate skillful interactions, and each client’s unique leadership presence.
RJ’s commitment to peace and social justice is in his DNA, and is rooted in the ethics of his grandfather who found a creative way to acquire property in the Deep South during an age when African Americans were not “allowed” to own property. His mother was a part of the Great Migration and his father was a leader of the NAACP, Berkshire County, Massachusetts Chapter. He is the founder of RJ Jennings Group and a team contributor at Palette17. He is also an active member of Coastside Families Taking Action and Fixin San Mateo County focused on social justice and reshaping our relationship with the local law enforcement.
Judy has worked in the areas of education, business marketing, personal growth, management and political advocacy most of her life. Her career encompasses elementary education, retail and franchise creation and management, and nonprofit management, strategies, and expansion.
Judy began her career teaching, moving to retail development in Supercuts Corporation as a franchisee, then to Primo’s Coffee Inc. owning eleven retail locations. She and her husband currently own Kimmel & Company, a business and family consulting company. Her career in the political space began with running the California Presidential campaign for Rep. Dennis Kucinich. Her nonprofit career includes The est Foundation, and the Beyond War Foundation, and serving on the Board of Marin Rowing Association establishing and expanding their outreach and national impact.
Coaching in the private and public sectors and serving on nonprofit Boards is her passion. Recently she co-authored the Book SELF with her husband Joel. Judy is dedicated to powerful interpersonal communication, political advocacy toward nonviolence, and transformational relationships with family, community, and in business.
Judy has been featured in INC magazine, MARIN magazine, CBS 60 Minutes Bay Area, and is the recipient of the Marin County Democratic Party Peace Award. She is a Master Rower, having won multiple national and international gold medals. Judy lives with her husband in Marin County, California.
Lynn is an experienced executive, leader, educator and consultant who has worked in management, training, education and organizational development for 35 years. Her experience includes positions as Chief Executive Officer for Marilyn Burns Education Associates, an educational consulting and training firm; Manager of Franchise Development and Director of Compliance for ComputerLand Corporation; and Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of McCullough & Company/Orbit Computers, Inc. Since 1985, she has been President of her own firm, The Lannon Group.
She has facilitated large-scale systems and culture change initiatives organizations in Hong Kong, Singapore, Indonesia, Australia, England and Japan.
Lynn is adjunct business faculty for Keuka College International Programs in Vietnam and China. She’s traveled extensively in China, Viet Nam, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, Brazil and throughout Europe. Her second language is Portuguese.
She holds a B.S. degree from Keuka College and a MEd from Cambridge College, Institute of Open Education.
Lynn served as the vice chair of the board of directors of Raphael House, a San Francisco shelter for homeless families. She was a founding board member of The Professional and Businesswomen’s Conference in San Francisco. She is Trustee Emerita at Keuka College and Director Emerita at Raphael House.