Laura Talmus

Exec Dir & Co-founder
Beyond Differences

Laura Talmus founded Beyond Differences along with her husband, Averell “Ace” Smith, following the unexpected death of their daughter Lili Rachel Smith in October 2009. Laura has run the day-to-day operations of Beyond Differences as a volunteer since its founding and was hired by the Board of Directors as its first Executive Director in August 2015. With over thirty-five years’ experience in running and consulting to non- profit organizations, she has promoted social justice, women’s and progressive causes. She is passionate about bringing awareness to the issue of adolescent social isolation. Laura has been honored with the Marin County Human Rights Commission Martin Luther King, Jr. Humanitarian Award, the Jefferson Prize, the Vision Award from the Marin Interfaith Council, and, the JCRC Courageous Leadership Award. Laura lives in Marin County with her husband and they are parents to Abram Smith, 28 years old.



Programming descriptions are generated by participants and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of SXSW.

Programming descriptions are generated by participants and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of SXSW.