Our Leadership Team
Eric Liu is an author, educator, and civic entrepreneur. Eric co-authored The Gardens of Democracy and The True Partriot with Nick Hanauer, and together the two have created the True Patriot Network to advance the book's ideals of progressive patriotism. His first book, The Accidental Asian: Notes of a Native Speaker, was a New York Times Notable Book featured in the PBS documentary “Matters of Race." He is also the author of Guiding Lights: How to Mentor – and Find Life’s Purpose, and is founder of the Guiding Lights Network, an organization dedicated to promoting great citizenship. His book Imagination First, co-authored with Scott Noppe-Brandon of the Lincoln Center Institute, explores ways to unlock imagination in education, politics, business and the arts.
Eric served as a White House speechwriter for President Bill Clinton and later as the President's deputy domestic policy adviser. In 2002 he was named one of the World Economic Forum's Global Leaders of Tomorrow.
Eric lives in Seattle, where he teaches at the University of Washington and hosts an acclaimed television interview program called Seattle Voices. In addition to speaking regularly at venues across the country, Eric also serves on the boards of the League of Education Voters, Seattle Public Library Foundation and the Swedish Medical Center Foundation. He is a graduate of Yale College and Harvard Law School, and a proud Seattle Public Schools parent. @ericpliu
Jená Cane is a partner at The Guiding Lights Network. Along with Eric, she co-founded Citizen University and leads the creative team of event planners who produce the conference. She created the Sworn-Again America project and works with national partners to bring the ceremony to thousands of people each year. Jená is also an actor and teaching artist. She co-founded One World Theatre and worked with this award-winning company from 1998-2002. @jenacane @swornagain
Alex Martin has been working with Guiding Lights Network since 2007. She, and her team at Jubilee Event Engineers, are an integral part of Citizen Univeristy and also support many of the Network's projects. An independent event planner and partner at Jubilee, Alex makes art and spends entirely too much time thinking about how to reduce her consumer footprint. She lives with her partner Freya and her son Ari in Columbia City, South Seattle.