Presented as part of
  “EDUCATING THE HEART: A MORAL COMPASS”
   A SPEAKER SERIES SPONSORED BY THE FAMILY OF MICHAEL J. PENDER ’90
   Support also provided by the Maltz Museum's Stop the Hate Fund.

What does peace mean to you? What does community mean to you?
 
Those questions were asked by John Noltner, founder of the "A Peace of My Mind" project, during his time at Gilmour Academy. His multimedia art exhibit, a collection of photos of subjects from all walks of life, was on display in various areas around campus for two weeks in March. The project aims to use art to bring about social change. 

During his time on campus, Noltner shared his insight with students across disciplines and divisions. He met with students in a variety of courses including Intro to Art; religion; Culture, Self & Connection; photo; and entrepreneurship. He met with the fifth and sixth graders followed by the third and fourth graders. He addressed all students in grades 7-12 in Convocation and met with the Diversity, International and Peace and Justice Clubs.
 
Additionally, approximately 40 students who submitted answers to the school-wide prompt, “What does community mean to you?” participated in a photo shoot, which mimicked Noltner's “A Peace of My Mind” project. From that photo shoot, he created a video (seen below).

Back on campus for his rescheduled presentation for parents, alumni and guests (it had to be canceled in March due to a snow day), he debuted the video for students at Convocation and shared it with guests at his lunchtime presentation about how to foster a spirit of inclusivity in our children.

We thank Mr. Noltner for engaging with our community and helping us all have the comptence to see and the courage to act.
 
 
John Noltner is an American photographer and a peace activist. Since 2009, he has been asking people the simple (or not so simple) question, “What does peace mean to you?” for his multimedia art project, A Peace of My Mind. The project combines photographs of diverse subjects and their personal stories exploring the meaning of peace. He has included the voices of Holocaust survivors, homeless individuals, political refugees and others. The project has been presented at the Nobel Peace Prize Forum, the Peace and Justice Studies Association, the Sojourners Summit for Change and the Dayton International Peace Museum. The project represents John’s belief that art and storytelling have the power to transform our hearts as well as our communities. His work has appeared in National Geographic Traveler, Forbes Magazine, Health, Smithsonian, Business Week and The New York Daily News.
 
 




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