Speaker Bio

Kevin F. Adler is a social entrepreneur dedicated to a world where everyone is seen as invaluable and interconnected. Kevin channels his passion for technology and human decency to bring people together, elevate stories from the underserved, and strengthen communities from within, whether connecting at-risk students with local mentors or reconnecting people experiencing homelessness with their loved ones.

Kevin is the Founder and CEO of Miracle Messages, an award-winning nonprofit that reconnects our neighbors experiencing homelessness with their loved ones… and us. To date, Miracle Messages has reunited 180 families, with an average time disconnected of 20 years. 20% of reunions have led to housing and 80% have resulted in a positive outcome, all at a fraction of the cost of other interventions. Miracle Messages is on a mission to end the “relational poverty” affecting as many as one in three people experiencing homelessness in the United States.

Kevin has been honored as the 2018 Young Alumnus of the Year at Occidental College, a 2018 Jefferson Award winner, a 2017 MassChallenge winner, a 2017 Ashoka / American Express emerging innovator, a 2016 TED Resident and TED Speaker, and a 2010-11 Rotary Ambassadorial scholar, for which he served in Oaxaca, Mexico. In addition, Kevin is a New Leaders Council fellow, a StartingBloc fellow, a member of Sandbox, a founding trustee of the Awesome Foundation-San Francisco, and an honorary lifetime member of the Rotary Club of Livermore Valley.

Kevin is the author of Natural Disasters as a Catalyst for Social Capital (Rowman & Littlefield), a ground-breaking book that demonstrates the role of shared traumas in bringing communities together. He has written for the New York Times, Christian Science Monitor, TechCrunch, San Francisco ChronicleCedar Rapids Gazette, and others. His scholarly work has been published by Routledge and CRC Press.

A frequent public speaker on homelessness and social capital, Kevin has given talks at TED, the US Dept of Health and Human Services, Stanford, and more. His work has been featured widely, including in the New York Times, NPR, People, on a billboard in Times Square, and NowThis, whose two videos received 47 million views. Previously, Kevin co-founded three education technology startups in Silicon Valley.

Kevin is a 2015 graduate of Singularity University’s Graduate Studies Program at NASA Ames, 1 of 80 participants selected from 5,000 applicants. He received his M.Phil in Sociology from the University of Cambridge, and a B.A. in Politics from Occidental College, where he was the Culley Award recipient as the top graduate, and where President Obama's "favorite professor" said, "in 40 years of teaching, Kevin is the single best student I have ever had." 

Kevin grew up in Livermore, California, and is currently based in San Francisco. He never learned the word stranger, and tries to live accordingly.


Random Tidbits

  • Had a small speaking role in a Sundance-award winning film

  • Once was featured in Teen Vogue, but not for his dreamy boy band

  • Uses his middle initial "F" to honor his mom, Joan Farrington

  • Has never tried coffee

  • Once made Gayle King cry ("a little").

  • When he was 12, he felt like something was missing in his life, and asked his family to visit local churches. This lead to his Christian faith.

  • His great-grandfather changed the family name from Orzeł (Polish for eagle) to Adler (German for eagle) at Ellis Island at the turn of the 19th century

Other headshots

headshots kevin f. adler (shinola).jpg