x = independently organized TED event

Theme: The Edge of the South

This event occurred on
September 25, 2012
12:00pm - 6:00pm EDT
(UTC -4hrs)
Atlanta, GA
United States

This TEDxAtlanta brings together 12 Southerners who are breaking new ground. In art, filmmaking, media, and fashion. In business, social innovation, energy production and the sciences.

384 Northyards Boulevard
Building 100
Atlanta, GA, 30313
United States
Event type:
Standard (What is this?)
See more ­T­E­Dx­Atlanta events


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

Chris Brown

Chris Brown shares his personal quest for inspiration and pure artistic expression. And we dig it. He turns new media into an art form full of texture, presence, romance, cool and calm. Refueled is a multimedia company based in Dallas that specializes in publishing, design, and film. It’s most widely known for its biannual lifestyle magazine. As Refueled’s publisher and creative director, Chris provides us not only a window into great culture, but also a peek into one man’s quest to make media itself an art form. Each story and video is far more than a passing glance or a footnote. It is a tour of the very textures and personalities inherent in style, music, and life. Refueled is more than a magazine: It’s a lifestyle brand.

Brandon Oldenburg

“Stay small, nimble and scrappy,” says Moonbot Studios co-founder, Brandon Oldenburg. What else could explain how a 35-person animation studio in Shreveport, La., rivals production studios such as Warner Brothers and Pixar? When an artistic studio adopts a startup mindset, that’s the secret to succeeding as an underdog. Oldenburg co-directed “The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore,” which won the 2011 Oscar for best animated short film. His nimble approach to running a studio led Moonbot to create two best-selling iPad apps, including “The Numberlys,” a fanciful depiction of the origin of the alphabet, and an interactive “Morris Lessmore” app that brings the short film to life on the iPad. Being flexible enough to change mediums at the change of the wind is crucial to Moonbot’s creative success.

Michael Moreland

Michael Moreland heads a research and development organization bringing the power of innovation, evaluation, and delivery to advance the causes of global health, humanitarian assistance, and development. Michael founded SEEDR L3C in 2009 and serves as its managing director. Over the past five years, Michael has consulted businesses, nongovernmental organizations, universities, and governments on public-private partnership, technology transfer, and innovation strategies. He is a regular lecturer at Georgia Tech and has been recognized for his public policy research on the relationships among social enterprise business models, technology, and economic development. Michael began his career in development locally with Community Investment Services at the Federal Home Loan Bank of Atlanta. He received a B.S. with Highest Honor from the Georgia Institute of Technology and has studied strategy at the Center for Strategic & International Studies (CSIS) in Washington D.C.

Brian Preston

Brian Preston had a passion to create a market for the work of America’s homeless craftsmen. In the process, he helped restore the dignity of the craftsmen. Preston is the founder and chief storyteller of Lamon Luther, a custom furniture shop that employs homeless men to handcraft beautiful furniture from reclaimed materials. He dreams of restoring men by giving them hope and opportunity. The craftsmen of Lamon Luther not only make beautiful pieces, but also change their own lives. Preston began by employing men who were homeless and living behind a shopping center in West Georgia. In a few short months, they’ve gone from nothing to having jobs, homes and renewed relationships with their families.

Monica Campana

Monica Campana Co-founder and Executive Director of Living Walls, seeks to promote, educate, and change perspectives toward public space in our communities via street art. The idea behind Living Walls is to bring together artists working in the public space ( like street artists and graffiti writers) with those who spend their time talking about public space ( like urbanists, urban farmers and professors) under the same roof. Living Walls recently picked up the award from the Atlanta Urban Design Commission for best organization of the year, and Creative Loafing put Campana on its list of the “20 People to Watch” in 2012. Living Walls champions folks from the male-dominated world of graffiti and street art, whose pedigrees in trespassing and anonymity are as well cultivated as their knowledge of color palettes. Wyatt Williams in a Creative Loafing article stated that " Campana’s organizational skills are downright remarkable: One might assume that running a nonprofit that specializes in herding stoned cats would require a similar set of skills."

Doc Waller

As a performance artist, writer, and director, U.S. Air Force veteran Doc Waller uses a variety of media to bring the written word to life. His career has spanned from dance companies to national television, but he most recently served as the executive artistic director and founder of an Alabama nonprofit Arts organization called The Layman Group to nurture the talents of young artists. While leading the organization, he directed a long list of productions: plays, exhibitions of fine art, contemporary dance productions, performance pieces, multimedia projects, public art showings, and an original music series. And he currently hosts at web video series: “On Beauty with Doc Waller”

Phillip Roebuck

A Virginia-born songwriter and bare-bones one-man band, Roebuck stomps out beats on a classic, depression-era drum apparatus, while strumming the banjo with a fierce, ragged-but-right style. Although he has played more than 1,000 shows in venues and on festival stages in the U.S. and Europe, Roebuck can just as easily be seen performing on a street corner in New Orleans or New York City. At 41, Roebuck has two one-man band albums under his belt. A third is in the works. Besides being voted the best subway performer by the New York Press in 2002, he’s been cultivating a nationwide following thanks to a life based on touring and hype free music.

Kabir Sehgal

Banker, jazz bassist, entrepreneur, political aide and author, Kabir Sehgal shows us what jazz, democracy and civil rights all have in common. A graduate of Dartmouth College, the London School of Economics, and a finalist for the Rhodes Scholarship, he is an accomplished jazz bass player, even winning the coveted Most Outstanding Jazz Bass Soloist award from Jazz at Lincoln Center. He has performed and toured around the world with Grammy winners including jazz legend Wynton Marsalis. In 2008, he published Jazzocracy: Jazz, Democracy, and the Creation of a New American Mythology, a book former President Jimmy Carter said " brilliantly shows us how both jazz and democracy require an environment of free exchange and collective ingenuity." With the actor Jude Law, he co-founded Music for Tomorrow, a nonprofit jazz booking service that benefits New Orleans charities.

Brittany Wenger

Brittany Wenger, a high-school senior, is well on her way to making the diagnosis of breast cancer less painful and more accurate. Wenger began studying neural networks when she was in the seventh grade. And this year, she won the grand prize in the 2012 Google Science Fair for her project, “Global Neural Network Cloud Service for Breast Cancer.” The resulting Cloud4Cancer service aggregates data from biopsies done with the fine-needle aspiration process, instead of the traditional and more painful surgical option. The goal of Wenger’s network is to ensure that fine-needle aspiration biopsies are as accurate as traditional biopsies, which would allow more women to be diagnosed and treated early. In preliminary trials, the service has achieved 99.11 percent sensitivity to malignancy, and its nearly 8 million trials have demonstrated the network improves as more data is deposited. And because it is delivered as a cloud service, Cloud4Cancer is built to support usage by every hospital in the world.

Dr. Joy Peterson

Dr. Joy Peterson is working on the next generation of biofuels, converting local forestry residues from Southern yellow pine into ethanol. Dr. Joy Peterson joined the Microbiology Department at the University of Georgia in 2002. Her work explores using bioconversion to turn forestry residues and agricultural byproducts into specialty chemicals and fuel ethanol. Her current research explores the feasibility of building biorefineries in rural areas, where they can be coupled to existing forestry or agricultural operations, which have huge existing stockpiles of agricultural residues. Dr. Peterson is chair of the Fermentation and Biotechnology Division of the American Society for Microbiology and was recently selected to chair the University of Georgia’s Biofuels, Biopower, and Biomaterials Initiative, or B3I.

Matt + Carrie Eddmenson

Matt and Carrie Eddmenson have returned to their roots to honor their grandparents – and to sew the perfect pair of jeans. Carrie first met Matt when they were 10 years old because both their families worked in the same industry: denim. Their company, Imogene + Willie, is named after Carrie’s maternal grandparents, signifying a celebration of family and love that Matt and Carrie share with anyone who walks into their store, the old Granny White Service Station in Nashville, Tenn. Inspired by their eight grandparents, they wanted to keep it simple. All they wanted to do, Carrie says, was sew the perfect jean. The national attention their creations have won suggests they’ve succeeded.

Organizing team


Atlanta, GA, United States
  • Tod Martin
  • Barbara Griffin
    Steering Group
  • Charles Green
    Steering Group
  • Leo Alvarez
    Steering Group
  • Patty Tucker
    Steering Group
  • Michael Piersa
    Steering Group / Sponsorship Co-Chair
  • Tanya Coventry-Strader
    Steering Group / Sponsorship Co-Chair
  • Lisa Alvarez
    Planning Committee / Outreach Director
  • Kyle Jones
    Social Media Chair
  • Chris Wojda
    Planning Committee
  • Jenn Flemish
    Planning Committee / Producer
  • Sherry Artesiano
    Planning Committee
  • Dave Whitling
    Planning Committee / Music Co-Chair
  • Chuck Reese
    Planning Committee / Music Co-Chair
  • Eddie Owen
    Music Committee
  • Matt Arnet
    Music Committee
  • Josie Capuano
    Planning Committee / Speaker Coordination
  • Jenn Graham
    Planning Committee / Speaker Liaison
  • David Kennerly
  • Mardy Beeson
    Production Team
  • Mike Thomas
    Production Team
  • Chris Linder
    Production Team
  • Colleen Russell
    Production Team
  • David Strohman
    Production Team
  • Marivee Cade
    Production Team
  • Daniel Pederson
    Production Team
  • Ryan Chapman
    Production Team
  • Andy Ransom
    Production Team