Norfolk, Va. (Vocus) July 22, 2010
Jessica Simpson, Operation Smile’s International Youth Ambassador, will speak on opening night at Operation Smile’s 18th annual International Student Leadership Conference (ISLC). Almost 400 college and high school students from 12 countries around the world will gather from August 1-5 at the University of Denver in Denver, Colorado. Jessica Simpson’s keynote address will focus on the conference’s theme – Be the Change! – empowering students to make a difference and change lives in their communities and around the world.
Since 2003, Jessica Simpson has helped to spread awareness for children suffering from cleft lip and cleft palate and the work of Operation Smile. In 2006, she visited Capitol Hill to speak on behalf of the organization. She has participated on international medical missions to Kenya and India, where she donned scrubs and witnessed the work of the surgical team in the operating room. Recently, Jessica launched a new initiative called A Beautiful Me in collaboration with Operation Smile, to help inspire self-esteem in young people who can then use their confidence and personal strength to change the world. Note: Jessica Simpson will be available for select pre-arranged interviews prior to the ISLC.
As a feature performer, 22-year-old electric violinist Caitlin Moe will showcase her dynamic melodies. Fresh off the 2009/2010 West Coast tour with multi-platinum selling rock band Trans-Siberian Orchestra, Caitlin performs alongside DJ Mia Moretti. Caitlin introduces her audience to a mix of strings and club hits with her signature electric blue violin, adding new twists to tracks by artists such as Lady GaGa, MGMT, Kings of Leon and La Roux. Moe is a fixture at celebrity events such as Perez Hilton’s CocoPerez.com launch party and Diesel’s fall launch event at Saks 5th Avenue.
The ISLC is hosted by Operation Smile, a worldwide children’s medical charity that provides free surgery for children in developing countries who were born with cleft lips, cleft palates and other facial deformities. Students will participate in team building activities, compete in field games and complete a service project for future Operation Smile patients. The goal of ISLC is to educate students on the value of service within their communities and help them establish a lifetime of giving to others. ISLC participants hail from more than 12 different countries including the United States, Canada, Ireland, Dominican Republic, Egypt, Honduras, India, Jordan, Morocco, Panama, Paraguay and Thailand. Thousands of students in more than 600 schools around the world are involved in Operation Smile’s Student Programs, making a difference in children’s lives worldwide and learning the importance of volunteerism.
At the ISLC, additional speakers include: Dan Clark, a New York Times best-selling author, and songwriter/recording artist, who is the author of 20 best-selling books including “Common Ground” and a primary contributing author to the “Chicken Soup For The Soul” series; Tsering Yangkyi from Tibet who has spent her life dedicating herself to helping the Tibetan people in the areas of health care, education and cultural preservation; and Maggie Doyne, founder of the BlinkNow Foundation, empowering young people to develop solutions to world poverty targeting war-torn countries.
About Operation Smile (http://www.operationsmile.org)
Founded in 1982 by Dr. Bill and Kathy Magee, Operation Smile, headquartered in Norfolk, Virginia, is a worldwide children’s medical charity whose network of global volunteers are dedicated to helping improve the health and lives of children and young adults. Since its founding, Operation Smile has treated more than 150,000 children born with cleft lips, cleft palates and other facial deformities and the organization has a presence in more than 50 countries. In addition to contributing free medical treatment, Operation Smile trains local medical professionals in its partner countries and leaves behind crucial equipment to lay the groundwork for long-term self-sufficiency.
Jessica Kraft, Director of Public Relations
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