x = independently organized TED event

Theme: Finding your place in the universe

This event occurred on
February 22, 2013
5:00pm - 7:00pm PST
(UTC -8hrs)
San Diego, CA
United States

Designed as an independently organized TED event on the evening of February 22, 2013, with an anticipated sell-out crowd of 1,300 individuals and hundreds more participating online through a simulcast, the TEDxAshokaU event will feature leaders speaking on the topic of “Find Your Place in the Universe”.

Balboa Theater
868 Fourth Avenue
San Diego, CA
United States
Event type:
Standard (What is this?)
See more ­T­E­Dx­Ashoka­U events


Speakers may not be confirmed. Check event website for more information.

Alex Bernadotte

"Alexandra (Alex) Bernadotte is the founder and chief executive officer of Beyond 12, a nonprofit that integrates personalized coaching with intelligent technology to increase the number of traditionally underserved students who earn a college degree. She has more than 15 years of executive management and strategic development experience in both the nonprofit and private sectors. Before creating Beyond 12, she served as an Associate Partner and an Entrepreneur-in-Residence at NewSchools Venture Fund where she developed the business plan for Beyond 12. Alex's previous professional experience includes serving as executive director of The Princeton Review's Silicon Valley office, co-founder and vice president of marketing and online strategy at educational travel startup Explorica, director of operations at EF Education, and operations manager at the World Health Organization in Geneva, Switzerland, where she coordinated the efforts of an international youth substance abuse prevention foundation. Alex was also the executive director of Foundation for a College Education (FCE), a nonprofit in East Palo Alto, California, whose mission is to increase the number of students of color who enroll in and graduate from college. She recently completed a 3-year term as president of the FCE board of directors and currently serves on the FCE advisory board. Alex received her undergraduate degree from Dartmouth College and earned a master's degree with a concentration in policy and organizational leadership from Stanford University. Alex was recently selected as an Ashoka Fellow and won a 2012 Jefferson Award for Public Service."

Chris Crane

Chris Crane is CEO of Edify Inc, a faith-based social enterprise that makes small business loans to schools educating impoverished children in Africa and Latin America. These sustainable schools charge $5-$15 per month tuition, and repay their loans. The funds are then recycled to other schools. Edify has made loans to over 600 schools in the last 2 years. These affordable schools provide a much better education to poor children than available otherwise. Chris served as President/CEO of Opportunity International, the world’s largest faith-based microfinance organization with 10,000 direct and indirect staff, from 2002-2009. During this time, Opportunity grew from 375,000 clients to 1.5 million active clients. Crane acquired COMPS InfoSystems, Inc. in San Diego in 1992 and served as its President and CEO until he sold the company in 2000. Under Crane’s leadership, COMPS grew from a small, print-based publishing firm with coverage of commercial real estate sale information in four western states into an electronic database publisher with 420 employees and coverage of 50 of the top real estate markets in the US. In 1999 he led the company in an IPO. Crane was awarded the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award in San Diego. He earned an MBA from Harvard Business School.

Eden Full

Eden Full is the Founder of Roseicollis Technologies Inc. She studied for two years at Princeton University and is currently taking gap years to work on her start-up full time after being selected for the inaugural class of the 20 Under 20 Thiel Fellowship. Named one of the 30 under 30 in Forbes’ Energy category for 2012 and Ashoka’s Youth Social Entrepreneur of the Year, Eden founded Roseicollis Technologies Inc. to take her solar panel tracking invention called the SunSaluter to developing communities and established markets that need them. The SunSaluter won the Mashable/UN Foundation Startups for Social Good Challenge and was awarded the runner-up prize at the 2011 Postcode Lottery Green Challenge. While at Princeton, Eden initiated and curated TEDxPrincetonU. Proudly Canadian, she was born and raised in Calgary, Alberta. After coxing for the Princeton lightweight women’s team, Eden was selected to be the coxswain for the 2012 Rowing Canada’s senior women’s development team, where they won a gold medal at Holland Beker and the Remenham Challenge Cup at the Henley Royal Regatta, beating the German Olympic boat.

Andreas Heinecke

"Andreas Heinecke, founder and CEO of Dialogue Social Enterprise GmbH, started his path as social entrepreneur in 1988. While working for a radio-station, he was charged with developing a rehabilitation program for a blind colleague. Inspired by this encounter and realizing the potential he created a dialogue with a reversal of roles - the concept of Dialogue in the Dark. Since then, numerous Dialogue in the Dark exhibitions and business workshops have evolved worldwide and are established independently through a social franchise-system. Millions of visitors and participants have been taking part in this unique experience, thereby promoting empathy and tolerance towards “otherness” in the greater public understanding. In 1997 Dialogue in Silence was created as complimentary experience in total silence where participants discover a repertoire of non-verbal expression with the help of deaf and hearing impaired guides and trainers. In 2009 Andreas Heinecke founded the Dialogue Social Enterprise GmbH to establish an umbrella for all current and future projects, the latest one being Dialogue with Time. Created by Orna Cohen and opening its doors in Israel in August 2012, the exhibition takes visitors through an experience of aging and a dialogue of generations. In 2005 he became the first ""Ashoka-Fellow"" in Europe and the Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship appointed him as “Outstanding Global Social Entrepreneur” Since 2011 Andreas holds a Professorship at the Danone Chair for Social Business at the European Business School in Wiesbaden, Germany."

Billy Parish

Billy Parish is Co-Founder and President of Mosaic, a clean energy investment marketplace, and Co-Author of Making Good: Finding Meaning, Money & Community in a Changing World. In 2002, he dropped out of Yale to found the Energy Action Coalition and grew it into the largest youth advocacy organization in the world working on the climate crisis. A serial social entrepreneur, Parish has helped launch dozens of clean energy, youth, and green jobs related companies and organizations and has been honored as a Rolling Stone magazine “Climate Hero,” an Utne Reader “50 Visionaries Who Are Changing Your World” was elected as a Fellow by Ashoka, the global association of the world's leading social entrepreneurs. He lives in Oakland, CA, with his wife and two daughters.

Felipe Vergara

Felipe Vergara (Co-Founder and CEO) has a degree in Industrial Engineering from Universidad De Los Andes in Colombia and has launched four companies in the education and finance industries. He received his MBA in finance from Wharton before joining McKinsey & Company as a consultant in their New York office. Felipe was recognized by Ashoka as a Leading Social Entrepreneur and Global Fellow in 2006, elected as an Endeavor Entrepreneur in 2009, named one of America’s 25 Most Promising Social Entrepreneurs by Business Week in 2009, won the Poder - ABC 2010 Award for Social Entrepreneurship, the World Economic Forum Social Entrepreneuship Award for Latin America in 2011 and the UBS Global Social Venture Lab Competition in 2011 as well.

Anya Kamenetz

Anya Kamenetz is a writer at Fast Company Magazine and the author of several books and book chapters about the future of education. In 2011, Learning, Freedom and the Web ( and The Edupunks’ Guide ( were published as free ebooks by the Mozilla and Gates Foundation respectively. Generation Debt (Riverhead, 2006), dealt with youth economics and politics; DIY U: Edupunks, Edupreneurs, and the Coming Transformation of Higher Education, (Chelsea Green, 2010) investigated innovations to address the crises in cost, access, and quality in higher education. She was named a 2010 Game Changer in Education by the Huffington Post, received 2009 and 2010 National Awards for Education Reporting from the Education Writers Association, and was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize in Feature Writing by the Village Voice in 2005. With a growing awareness that we’re living in a time of profound change, I feel blessed to be engaged in this work of envisioning the future, connecting with others who are excited about change, and telling stories about the possibilities. I speak across the country, I blog at, the Huffington Post, and, and–I Tweet, yes I do, @Anya1anya. I live in Brooklyn with my husband and daughter.

Organizing team


Washington, DC, United States
  • Marina Kim
    Executive Director, Ashoka U
  • Erin Krampetz
    Community Manager, Ashoka U
  • Beeta Ansari
    Exchange Manager, Ashoka U
  • Michele Leaman
    Changemaker Campus Director, Ashoka U