Last week, I had the great fortune to be a part of the Fred Forward Symposium at the Fred Rogers Center in Latrobe, PA, where the goal was to look at and discuss, from a variety of different angles and expert voices, “How families live well with media and technology in ways that strengthen and enhance adult-child relationships?”

Amazing minds from media, entertainment, academia, research, non-profits and business presented on topics, each more fascinating and thought provoking than the next. Presentations included: Family Personas in the Media (shout out to Dr. Shira Lee Katz from Netflix); Learning from Organizations in Diverse Settings (this session still has me thinking – thank you Brian Wallace of The Coin Laundry Association, Ramon Murphy of the Bodega Association of the US and Patti Miller of the Clinton Foundation and Too Small to Fail); The Impact of Words and Language; Messages Not to Be Missed; Brand Strategy; and Connecting with Parents Through Children’s Media and Music (Laurie Berkner, Joey Mazzarino and Brad Montague seriously brought the house down!). Facebook’s head of safety, Antigone Davis had powerful points about connection and community, as well as safety, sharing the MamaDragons as an important example of the impact of online community and support.

Every single speaker was mind blowingly impressive and I loved meeting and chatting with so many of you: Amazon’s brilliant Dr. Alice Wilder, the motivating and inspiring Joanne Goldblum of the National Diaper Bank Network (their work changes lives), Dr. Todd Wolynn from Kids Plus Pediatrics (everyone should be so lucky to have him as their pediatrician), Dr. Anne Gill (who made me cry with her beautiful words on parenting) from the Center for Parents and Children University of Pittsburgh and the very witty and smart Wynne Tyree of Smarty Pants.

Betty Cohen, Chris McKee and I presented a panel titled: Lessons Learned from Commercial Messaging. Betty moderated in such a thoughtful way while Chris (a seriously talented guy) and I focused on dad and mom angles of marketing. I can hardly wait to work with both Chris and Betty more. They are so sharp, funny and wise. I’ll let Twitter tell you:

Here are more from tweets from the Fred Forward Symposium! I can’t help sharing these tweets, every session had such nuggets that I can’t stop thinking about:

It was so clear through the Fred Forward Symposium that we are strengthened, sustained and grow because of the support of our neighborhoods, wherever they may be. Thank you Rick Fernandes and the whole Fred Rogers Center team for including me. I’ll never forget your incredible symposium, the life experience of it and the invaluable lessons from the hearts and brains of the world-changing people there.