Tess Cacciatore: Co-Founder & Co-Chair Person
Tess is an award-winning producer for the past 20+ years in the areas of entertainment, technology and philanthropy.
Tess has dedicated her life to advocating for peace, justice, and equality around the globe. She has traveled the United States and abroad as a humanitarian documentary producer and activist, while conducting empowerment and mentorship programs to empower people and to eradicate unjust systems that are a plight to humans, animals and the environment. Tess uses her voice as a vehicle to bring awareness and activate people to take a stand for making changes in the world.
Tess’s career as a producer in the entertainment and technology industries drives the global productions of GWEN and now her 20 year vision of a global online television network of empowerment has launched under the umbrella of GWEN. Check out GWENNetwork TV.
Throughout her life, Tess has spoken regularly at international platforms on behalf of children and the imperative use of media and technology to bridge cultures of the world. She has addressed thousands of people through conferences, workshops, and festivals, and millions through radio and TV appearances. Cacciatore’s media appearances include: “The Today Show”, “Prime Time with John Stossel”, The Manny Alvarez Show (FOX) and local TV news in cities such as: Los Angeles, San Diego, Las Vegas, Dallas, Austin, New York. Tess has appeared as a guest on numerous global radio programs, as well as hosted her own radio show (now webseries GWEN Talks).
Tess has brought her story to many publications such as: Family Circle, The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, The Chicago Tribune, The Des Moines Register, and Parenting Magazine. In 2003 Cacciatore was awarded the Fete d’Excellence from Sub-Commission for Human Rights at the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland for her work in educational entertainment and continues to use her voice to speak out and produce events in conjunction with the United Nations from 2000 to present day. Her passion is to reach the “powers that be” to change local and international laws to protect women and children globally.
Some of her more notable efforts include raising funds to feed 1.3 million children annually through social media and micro donations (FEED 333 from 2004-2007) building 38 homes in Sri Lanka after the 2005 Tsunami, creating the YOUR VOICE YOUR CHOICE global campaign to assist young leaders in Africa, along with humanitarian collaborations that include delivering safe drinking water filters, music instruments for students, beds and nets to protect children from malaria, and humanitarian relief in United States, Thailand, Vietnam, El Salvador, Cambodia, Sri Lanka, Ghana, Congo, South Africa, and more.
Prior to co-founding the Global Women’s Empowerment Network, Cacciatore was founder and executive director of the World Trust Foundation, an organization mentoring youth to become future leaders working together towards a sustainable world. Over the past decade, Cacciatore has traveled the globe connecting youth-focused nonprofit organizations and inspiring youth to take action towards positive changes in their lives, local communities, and global community.
Michael Littenberg: Co-Founder & Co-Chair Person
Michael is a successful entrepreneur with a commitment to civil rights and social justice and passion for creative expression. For three decades, Littenberg was active in real estate, but more recently has focused on his creative talents – writing and composing music. Littenberg’s love for music and composing, combined with his dedication to social good, inspired him to collaborate with friend and musician, Sterling Smith, to write the song “A Call to the Women of the World” — a passionate and powerful call to action to stop the violent atrocities plaguing women worldwide. The song forms the foundation of GWEN’s mission to inspire women to speak out against violence. Through his years in business, Littenberg learned that success in business takes more than just a good idea; it requires a great team and platform to become a reality. Littenberg is intent on demonstrating that a corporation can be financially successful while simultaneously improving the lives of women. Littenberg maintains his long-term family ties to Cedars-Sinai and with the success of GWEN, looks to continue his family’s legacy of philanthropy.
Cindy Garay: Director of Special Projects
Cindy first became civically engaged at the young age of 4, when she and her father protested the closure of a mom and pop shop to a well-known grocery store chain. Cindy’s desire to live in a just and equal world extended into her young adulthood – she participated in a 12-hour sit-in protest for the Iraq War. She then attended UCLA, where she majored in Political Science and Global Studies. She has worked extensively in the for-profit and non-profit sectors. Her goal is to positively impact the world and thus, found a home at GWEN.
Deb Coyle: Southern California Regional Director of GWEN Clubs
Deb is a business development marketing specialist focusing on the implementation of new and existing programs and products. She has extensive client services management within the children’s education and wellness sectors as well as the digital media and healthcare industries. She currently serves on the Kent State University alumni board of Southern California.
Judy Julin: Director of Global Education
Judy, Founder of CosmiKids and CEO of Engage Enterprises, Inc. She has been active in child enrichment, educational innovations and children’s wellness programming since 1982. Judy is a pioneer in developing programs and activities that cultivate the integral connection between intellectual development, social and emotional growth, physical health, and spiritual awareness. She founded CosmiKids in 2003 after developing a whole-child educational model and creating a number of children’s health clubs. Featured alongside Olivia Newton-John in Deepak Chopra’s “Seven Spiritual Laws of Success” DVD, based on his best-selling book, Julin has since partnered with Michael Beckwith from the movie “The Secret” in developing interactive play and crafting Stations of Discovery™ for children based on his Life Visioning process. The Quantum Education Certification Program, which Julin developed in 2006, is a whole-child educational model that led to a training and certification series for facilitators, teachers, parents and professional caregivers called Quantum YOUniversity™ which showcases the company’s unique Resonant Learning approach. Julin was also featured on CBS television with articles in “The Wall Street Journal,” “The Los Angeles Times” and “The Times of London” for developing innovations in enrichment programming.
She founded a landmark notion of children’s health clubs, with several locations and a franchise model for children in the 1980s called “Kids at Heart.” The clubs’ integral programming, fostering “positive minds, strong bodies and warm, loving hearts,” supplemented exercise with original videos, a children’s television pilot which she hosted, in-service activity ideas and a host of other learning products that quickly became recognized for their sound, practical, psychological and emotional benefits. She began working in the field of child enrichment and children’s wellness programming after graduating from Denison University in Granville, Ohio. Inspired by Denison’s educational philosophy, which encourages autonomous thinking, self-determination and “an integrated intellectual life, spiritually and morally informed,” she went on to develop empowerment models for the younger set and currently designs and builds multi-generational neighborhood learning centers that promote expansive thinking, emotional fluency, play and creativity throughout the US, in Mumbai India (cosmikids.in), Bucharest, Romania, Beijing and Canada. She most recently spent three months at DOE certified Hunter School in New Hampshire, a therapeutic, residential school specializing in children who are emotionally sensitive with extreme behavioral issues. There she headed up a team of educational leaders in developing a groundbreaking nature and creativity-based curriculum called Energetic Mindfulness™. While at Hunter, Julin also implemented a new teacher training series, co-created certification strategies and authored a funding document that led to interest and funding from west coast celebrity and Hollywood parents who wanted something more for their children in terms of education and parenting strategies.