Milenko Matanović is a nationally recognized thought leader who gained his reputation by successfully leading projects that involve people from all walks of life and all ages. He believes that empowering communities is the most efficient, foundational way for us to improve society. A passionate thinker, inspired teacher and insightful artist, Milenko accumulated his knowledge through decades of hands-on research and action. In 1986, he started the non-profit Pomegranate Center to explore the art of creative collaboration, and to teach that, when it comes to community, together we always know more. He has worked with hundreds of communities worldwide and led the creation of more than 40 gathering places, and spoken at numerous universities and conferences. Milenko has also trained community leaders in the Pomegranate Center model of community building, receiving numerous awards for these contributions. In his TEDxTacoma talk, Milenko will share ways that everyone can make a difference and help build community and connectivity, fostering a culture where collaboration becomes the norm.
Gail Romero has worked for numerous organizations throughout the world to build successful missions and enhance visions with social, political and economic impact. As the founder and CEO for Collective Changes, she provides the #1 technology platform to business mentors for women’s SMEs in developing nations. Gail continues to drive support for empowering women in business and global recognition of the economic engine that women can provide to their nations. Gail is also Senior Advisor for MacKenzie-Romero Consulting, Executive Producer for Rainmakers TV and carried the title of Ambassador – Global Health for the American Cancer Society until August of 2011. Gail has spent the last two decades creating and directing the development and integration of innovative economic ideas and campaigns and strategic alliances with policy makers to advance women in leadership throughout the world.
Ms. Romero has been nominated for the TED Prize, Schwab Fellow and most recently Collective Changes made the first cut for Social Venture Partners. She has held numerous corporate board positions for start-up companies and guided new social venture partnerships. She has served as a visiting professor and international speaker and presenter on social justice, women’s issues and education. Romero is a recent TED Prize nominee for her work to leverage technology to grow women’s business skills. Most recent books include MBA Women’s Guide to Success and the recently published Just Me – Women’s Guide to Personal Presence both available at Barnes and Noble and Amazon.
Dr. Robert R. Greene Sands, an anthropologist, is Director and Senior Research Fellow at the Institute for the Study of Culture and Language (ISCL) at Norwich University. Dr. Sands teaches in the Norwich University College of Graduate and Continuing Studies. Sands is also Editor of the ISCL’s online occasional paper series: Culture, Language and International Security (CLIS). From 2008 to 2011, Dr. Sands was Culture Chair and Anthropology Professor at the Air Force Culture and Language Center and Air University at Maxwell AFB, AL. While at AFCLC, Sands also was the Director of the Minerva Initiative for Energy and Environmental Security.
Currently, Dr. Sands is also a consultant supporting the development of culture and cross-cultural competence programs across the Department of Defense. Organizations and agencies he has presented to include U.S. Africa Command, 17th Air Force, the US Air Force Expeditionary Center, the Joint Chaplains College, Special Operations Command, the JAG School, Advanced Air Mobility Operations School, Joint Military Attaché School, Joint Foreign Area Officer Phase One course, Defense and National Intelligence professionals, among others.
Prior to his work with the Department of Defense, Sands taught in colleges and universities in several states and was also an archaeologist and cultural resource manager. Author of seven books and numerous chapters and articles, Sands has written on topics such as cross-cultural competence, environmental security, building partnerships and sustainability, sport and culture, ethnographic theory, and the cognitive origins of religion. His seventh book (co-authored with Allison Greene-Sands) is Cross-Cultural Competence for a 21st Century Military Culture: the Flipside of COIN (2013, Lexington Books). Dr. Sands holds a BA from Illinois State University, an MA from Iowa State University and a PhD from University of Illinois, all in anthropology.
Up to one-third of the world’s population has limited access to affordable, quality medicines. Chris Wright has been working in international development for over 20 years and has been with John Snow, Inc. (JSI) since 2002, working to address this problem. He focuses on public health supply chain management to improve access to medicines, contraceptives, and vaccines, optimizing supply chains, strengthening logistics MIS and data transparency, and developing human capacity for supply chain management in resource-limited countries.
As Deputy Country Director for Systems Strengthening in Tanzania from 2010–2012 and in Nigeria 2008–2010, he oversaw a broad portfolio of technical assistance activities to strengthen health commodity supply chains in the public sector. These included support to the HIV, laboratory, and TB commodity supply chains, and capacity building for the Tanzania Medical Stores Department (MSD) and the Nigerian Federal Central Medical Store, and other health workers involved in managing health commodities. Wright also oversaw the implementation of a new Enterprise Resource Planning system for MSD in Tanzania, and conceived and led initial development for an innovative electronic logistics management information system (eLMIS). Wright has recently taken a keen interest in opportunities to better integrate vaccines and cold chain logistics into other public health supply chain systems. He has worked in over 20 countries in Africa, Asia, the Caribbean, Eastern Europe, and the Middle East.
Prior to his career in public health, Wright developed and produced creative communication media and live marketing and product demonstration events for clients in the high tech sector. This evolved out of a decade of professional theater experience first as a technician, then as a writer, performer, director and producer of social and political satire reviews and improvisational comedy. Wright lives with his wife and two sons on the Hood Canal.
A radio veteran of more than 30 years, Bob Rivers got his start in Connecticut where he was heard on WAVZ, WNHC, WCDQ, WELI, WFIF, WCCC, WWCO, and last but certainly not least, WLIS. With no more stations left to conquer in Connecticut, Bob moved on to Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and New Hampshire. A program director stint at WECM in Claremont, New Hampshire, cured Bob of any further desire to be in management. "I worked at 20 stations in about six years," says Bob. "I wanted to make every mistake possible in this business."
After a brief stint as keyboardist/songwriter for a 70s bar band, Bob returned to radio at legendary rock station WAAF, Worcester/Boston. He began writing song parodies called Twisted Tunes, which were syndicated by the ABC Radio Network.
In 1989, Bob moved to Seattle where he underwent drug rehab (really!), an "off-air promotion" for which the now-sober Bob was awarded the opportunity to keep his job and his family.
Other prizes Bob has collected include an RIAA Gold Record for Atlantic Records' Twisted Christmas, which has sold over 1.6 million units, Radio & Records' major market Rock Personality of the Year, and Billboard's Radio Personality of the Week. The Puget Sound Radio Broadcasters Association's (the Soundies) awarded Bob three People's Choice Awards for the Best Minute of the Year in Seattle Radio. Bob says of his Soundies, "I love working in this town. I only have to do one minute of great radio per year."
Bob's Twisted Tunes are online at www.bobrivers.com, and Bob's home recording studio, dubbed "Bob's Garage," has hosted live performances by Ozzy Osbourne, Blue Oyster Cult, Randy Bachman, Foghat, Collective Soul, Candlebox and a host of others. Asked why The Bob Rivers Show has been at the top of the ratings in Seattle for years, Bob says: "Our team is the best ensemble cast I've ever heard in this business. And we don't have to be shock jocks to be interesting."
Jim Tisch is the founder & President of iQ Technologies – a company focused on changing the way people connect and communicate leveraging social media and innovative technologies. Jim is passionate about high-tech solutions that improve education, productivity and enhance collaboration. He has an established record of providing social media solutions that deliver results. He is a product and marketing professional with over 20 years of experience with strong new product development delivering enterprise solutions and best practices. He has experience with companies ranging from Internet start-up to Fortune 100 providing solutions for companies and organizations such as Laureate, Belo, Microsoft, Apple, and 3Com while working for companies such as iQ Technologies, FranklinCovey, eCollege.com, Pacific Edge, and Robbins Gioia consulting. Jim is a graduate of Brigham Young University.
Emily Ann Peterson
Emily Ann Peterson is a teaching artist, cellist, and vocalist based out of Tacoma. She inspires the growth of global resonance by building community through the marriage of music and whole-person development. Emily reveals ardent authenticity with her cello and voice through a tailored approach to performing and teaching internationally. As a Suzuki cello teacher, Emily has students aged 4 to 74 years old and teaches each of them holistically, not just their fingers. Her students are often with her for years, which gives her the honor of witnessing first-hand the life-force that comes through the music and the cello in her students' lives. Emily partners with yoga & dance teachers to create musical couture for their class' practice for that day. These on-to-spot compositions are created using a looping pedal, her cello, and her knowledge of the human body's interaction with music. The combination of these allow Emily to craft sounds and vibrations that encourage movement and growth appropriate for that day's practice.
Emily is the recipient of a 6-week Artist Residency at The Grünewald Guild in Leavenworth, WA during the months of March and April 2014.
As a recording artist, string-arranger, songwriter and session musician she has had the honor of working with Natalie Cole, Sera Cahoone, The Portland Cello Project, Rosie Thomas, David Bazan, Anais Mitchell, Karin Stevens Dance, Goldfinch, Kye Alfred Hillig, The Tacoma Urban Orchestra, Barcelona, and many others. Emily currently holds or has held membership in the Northwest Symphony Orchestra, the Seattle Rock Orchestra, the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (The Grammys), and the Suzuki Association of the Americas. She is an alumnus of Texas Tech University's Rawls College of Business and the Colorado Suzuki Institute. She is a co-founding faculty member of the Coda School of Music.
Picture Adam Argyle as a human Swiss Army knife–trained and efficient across a wide array of technologies, languages, frameworks, and development approaches. Adam codes at work and at home, passionately gleaning and learning from the open source community. Specializing in development in the presentation tier, Adam draws from his past as a designer, creating games, sites, apps, and 3D worlds. He seeks to be pixel perfect in creation of UI and UX, because these things matter. He’s also a gamer–an RPG head to be exact–spending his weekends exploring dungeons, slashing monsters, and saving the girl.
For TEDxTacoma, Adam will talk about connectivity and technology, old and new. How starting your car is an interface experience: sounds, vibrations, and visual indicators all come together so you can push your foot down and go 60mph. Modern software seeks to become a part of your life like this, with interactions becoming second nature. There are also times to be disconnected; times to focus on what the five senses are telling you about the world around you. Some things can’t be replaced by software. Whether a digital or analog version, a virtual experience can never replace being there in the moment.
Muh Grog Zoo
Muh Grog Zoo mostly identifies with being an Improvisational Theatre Cohort specializing in Improvised One Act Plays. Based out of Tacoma, they have been nurturing and sharing a different breed of improv around the Pacific Northwest since 2011. Instead of solely relying on games or humor, M. Zoo's specific Long-Form Improv depends on the openness, skill, heart, and imagination of the actors to spontaneously create an entire One Act Play. Muh Grog Zoo players (Adam Utley, Dylan Twiner, Paul Richter, and Sam Duchin) believe that Improvisational Theatre can be just as moving, impactful, and meaningful for an audience as scripted theatre… and they do not disappoint.
Using believable characters, nuanced relationships, and unexpected situational humor, Muh Grog Zoo creates uproarious and touching theatre in the moment. Unique plots infused with organic storylines leave the audience wondering how this could possibly be improv. Muh Grog Zoo is dedicated to growing and pushing the limits of what Improvisational Theatre can do and mean. Consequently, the improv that they do has shaped the way they understand relationships, communication and connectivity with the world. It is quite the engaging opportunity to be able to share with TED their inspired ideas on why and how their art form exists. The essence of Long Form Improv, according to M. Zoo, is effortless trust. It is conceived when dedicated improvisers come together to actively spark and nurture each other’s' imaginations. Stories can be told just as effectively, emotions can be raised just as dramatically, and unintentional comedy can happen just as beautifully. By preventing the actor from over-thinking anything, we are left with honest reactions that continuously build engaging theatre. It is imperative that you jump in, completely blind, and absolutely trust the people you are performing with to catch you. In Muh Grog Zoo, they always do.
Specializing in Wildlife and Tribal Portrait Art, Becci’s desire to study both in their natural world has led to adventurous travel across 6 continents in over 45 countries around the globe. One of Becci’s journeys was to Rwanda in search of endangered Mountain Gorilla – the same area where Dian Fossey of Gorillas in the Mist did her research. Becci was one of the early foreigners to venture back into Rwanda following the genocide. Her experience tracking rare Mountain Gorilla led to an interview by National Geographic Adventure Magazine as part of an issue on the world’s top 25 adventure trips.
As an artist, Becci’s explorations provide a wealth of knowledge and inspiration for her work. Favoring a technique called pointillism, her originals involve creating an image on paper literally dot by dot. The details require thousands of points placed one dot at a time and take weeks to complete. After many years of travel to Africa, Becci was featured in a documentary called As Close As You Dare – Africa which was broadcast on PBS stations across the US. Shot on location in Zimbabwe, Botswana, and Namibia, it shares her passion for wildlife and art and immerses the viewer in the dangers, beauty, and humor of Africa. “I seek the wild around me whether it’s in my own back yard or around the world. I see the wonders of the earth first hand and witness the critical importance of conservation, knowing that as the world evolves into a global community each of us, as individuals, impacts the future of life on earth.”
Becci will speak at TEDxTacoma on “The Art of Living an Unimaginable Life” based on her art and adventures. “My steps in the world are like the dots I place on paper, one following the other, not knowing for sure what the end result will be, but aware that as long as I follow my passion everything else will come. It will come in ways I could never have imagined.”
Dr. Tony Blau is a Professor in the Division of Hematology, Department of Medicine and Adjunct Professor in the Department of Genome Sciences at the University of Washington (UW). Originally from Ohio, Blau was drawn to Seattle because of its legacy as the birthplace of bone marrow transplantation, an intense form of leukemia treatment, and the first stem cell therapy.
Dr. Blau specializes in orchestrating collaborations across disparate scientific disciplines toward grand goals. As a physician-scientist and husband of a busy community oncologist, he came to believe that our approach to cancer needs to be fundamentally restructured, and for this reason founded the UW’s Center for Cancer Innovation (CCI). Grounded in the belief that a single patient can teach us a great deal about cancer, CCI applies the latest scientific knowledge to the treatment of today’s cancer patients while using their experiences to benefit all cancer patients tomorrow. CCI recently launched its first clinical trial in an aggressive form of breast cancer called “triple-negative” breast cancer. CCI is a grass-roots “coalition of the willing,” comprised of nearly 100 community and academic oncologists, scientists, computational biologists, and other specialists from six different organizations, and owes much of its success to support from the South Sound region. Dr. Blau has served on numerous advisory panels for the National Institutes of Health. He received his medical degree from Ohio State University and completed his residency in internal medicine at Duke University.
In 2010, Vicci opened her horizon and started to say yes to things that were different and slightly uncomfortable for her, knowing that she had to get out of her comfort zone to get to the next level. She started with a new management company and was presented with the option to be on Season 1 of NBC’s new show, The Voice. Vicci said yes.
After winning on Team CeeLo and coming in third place overall, success on The Voice opened up some new doors for Vicci. In 2011, she was signed to Republic Records and went to work writing and recording an album. In 2012, she performed her new single, “Come Along,” with CeeLo on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno.
In the fall, the second single, “I Can Love,” was released to Hot AC and after four weeks peaked at #51, and Vicci’s relationship with Republic was over. Vicci began writing her new record.
On a flight to LA, Vicci serendipitously met Spanish Broadcasting exec Bill Shadorf. Latino 96.3 in Los Angeles started to play her track “Run, Run, Run” and because of it, Vicci went back to write her current single, “Otra Cancion” with her Swedish friend, writer Erik Lewander. Being a first-generation Mexican American has always been something Vicci has been proud of, and releasing this song helps to solidify her roots in this community.
During the past few years, Vicci has had some amazing opportunities; performing with Pat Monahan of Train, debuting “Come Along” on The Voice, the Grammy Soundcheck event at The Paramount in Seattle; and several other big-name festivals, showcases, and charity events. Vicci was honored to perform at the 2014 NFL Honors at Radio City Music Hall for her hometown team, Superbowl Champions the Seattle Seahawks. You never know what will happen if you just say yes!
Vicci will speak on the topic of CONNECTIVITY from her experience as a songwriter, observing how everyday connections with people become manifest in our artistic creations.