TEDxCharlottesville took place on Nov. 15th 9am to 6pm at the beautiful Paramount Theater on the historic Downtown Mall in Charlottesville, VA. An amazing and diverse lineup of speakers shared their "ideas worth spreading," revolving around the event's theme, "The Difference that Makes a Difference." A sold-out crowd of 1040 piled into the Paramount and left inspired after a day of live talks and video TED talks. The audience celebrated the day with an after-party at the Jefferson Theater.
From the outset of the event, the steering committee announced that it would be providing 250 tickets to the community, making the day accessible to many who could otherwise not be able to afford the price of admission. Local student groups, home-schoolers and non-profit groups were able to take advantage of these tickets making TEDx a true community event.
TEDxCharlottesville purchased carbon offset credits to make the event carbon neutral. Each attendee received a reusable water bottle and coffee mug to be used throughout the day in effort to make this TEDx event zero-waste. It was a GREEN event!
We hope this successful event will be the first of many to come!
Speakers may not be confirmed. Check event website for more information.
John HunterMusician, teacher, filmmaker and game designer, John Hunter has dedicated his life to helping children realize their full potential. His own life story is one of a never-ending quest for harmony. As a student, he studied comparative religions and philosophy while traveling through Japan, China and India. In India, inspired by Ghandi's philosophy, he began to think about the role of the schoolteacher in creating a more peaceful world. As his online biography says: "Accepting the reality of violence, he would seek to incorporate ways to explore harmony in various situations. This exploration would take form in the framework of a game – something that students would enjoy. Within the game data space, they would be challenged, while enhancing collaborative and communication skills." In 1978, at the Richmond Community High School, Hunter led the first sessions of his World Peace Game, a hands-on political simulation. The game has now been played around the world, on a four-tiered board. It's the subject of the recent film World Peace and Other 4th-Grade Achievements.
John KlugeEveryone poops. The problem, says John Kluge, is that 2.5 billion of us have no clean place to go, and that lack is generating massive troubles with global health, economic growth, and even education. Kluge co-founded impact investment and business development firm Eirene, which regularly confronts ugly realities like poor sanitation, aging and illiteracy. Now he and his nonprofit group, Toilet Hackers, are putting the poop problem squarely on the socioeconomic agenda. The man knows what he’s doing. The co-author of Charity and Philanthropy for Dummies and The Philanthropunk Manifesto will reveal how social entrepreneurs are employing the hard-edged ethos of punk rock to drive change.
Zoe RomanoZoë Romano really likes to run. In 2011, she ran 2,800 miles across the US, churning out 30 miles a day to become the first female to complete such a trek without a support vehicle. And, along the way she raised more than $15,000 for the Boys & Girls Clubs of America. Romano was struck by the power of this "odyssey run" — for her own growth as well as for others. Romano strongly holds the belief that everyone is capable of achieving the extraordinary and that endurance athletics are a powerful platform for advocating this philosophy. Her mission is to engage local and global communities in her odyssey running as a way to inspire them to not just dream big dreams, but to go do them. She first fell in love with running while a student at the University of Richmond, earning degrees in Spanish and International Studies, magna cum laude, in 2009. She is currently a freelance writer and tutors Spanish in Richmond. While she is one of a few hundred people who have run across the U.S., Romano's next odyssey is to be the first person to run the Tour de France. She started May 18 and will be running through the summer...
Deb GottesmanDeb Gottesman is the co-director of My Soul Look Back and Wonder: Life Stories from Women in Recovery, which premiered at The Kennedy Center in spring 2012 and will be featured in the upcoming documentary “How I Got Over.” Founder and Co-Executive Director of The Theatre Lab School of the Dramatic Arts in Washington, DC, she is also a professional actress who has performed Arena Stage, Woolly Mammoth Theatre, Signature Theatre, and the Washington Shakespeare Company, among many others. As a director, she has worked at National Geographic Live, Catholic University’s Musical Theatre Department, and The Theatre Lab. A pioneer in the field of applied acting, she has co-authored (along with Buzz Mauro) three books, all published by Penguin Putnam: The Interview Rehearsal Book: Seven Steps to Job-Winning Interviews Using Acting Skills You Never Knew You Had (1999, over 20,000 copies sold), Taking Center Stage: Masterful Public Speaking Using Acting Skills You Never Knew You Had (2001), and The Best Answer (2006). Her work has been featured on numerous radio programs (including the "David Essel Show" and "The Source Report," both nationally syndicated by Westwood One), as well as on the FOX Morning News in Washington, DC, and in the magazines Working Woman, Men’s Health and Cosmopolitan. Deb holds a B.A. in Psychology from Lawrence University, and an M.F.A. in Acting from The Catholic University of America. She is a 2003 recipient of the prestigious Linowes Leadership Award for her contributions to arts education for underserved populations.
Ralph CohenRalph Alan Cohen is Co-Founder of the American Shakespeare Center and Professor of Shakespeare and Performance in the Master of Letters and Fine Arts program, which he established at Mary Baldwin College. He was the project director for the building of the Blackfriars Playhouse in Staunton, Virginia. He has directed 30 productions of plays by Shakespeare and his contemporaries, including Francis Beaumont’s The Knight of the Burning Pestle, in America’s first professional production of that play. Ralph is the author of ShakesFear and How to Cure It: A Handbook for Teaching Shakespeare. He has published widely on Shakespeare and early modern staging, and he co-edited Thomas Middleton’s Your Five Gallants for Oxford University Press’s Collected Works of Thomas Middleton. He founded the Studies Abroad program at James Madison University, where he won Virginia’s award for outstanding faculty. In 2008 he received the Virginia’s Governor’s Arts Award, and in 2009 he was the Theo Crosby Fellow at Shakespeare’s Globe in London. Ralph earned his undergraduate degree at Dartmouth College, his doctorate at Duke University, and has honorary degrees from Georgetown University and St. Lawrence University. From 1969 to 1973, he was an usher at Duke’s Cameron Indoor Stadium.
Laura ThomasLaura Mulligan Thomas has served as the director of the Charlottesville High School Orchestra for more than three decades. Thomas came to CHS after graduating with honors from James Madison University in 1982 and began immediately to develop and nourish the orchestra program of eight students she inherited. Today an award-winning group of 150, a number of CHSO graduates are professional musicians who perform with orchestras and pop, rock, and country artists in the U.S. and Europe. Still other alumni have followed in Thomas's footsteps and pursued careers in music education. Honored as Charlottesville's Woman of the Year in 1999 by the Virginia Women's Forum, Thomas was also named one of the Charlottesville Top 25 Citizens by C-ville. Numerous additional awards for her work with young musicians include Charlottesville's Distinguished Teacher Award, the Golden Apple Award, the Piedmont Council of the Arts Award, and Outstanding Educator in Central Virginia awarded by Phi Delta Kappa. Thomas studied orchestral conducting with Thomas Wilkins, Carl Roskott, and Ray Fowler, and earned her master's degree from Shenandoah Conservatory in 1996. In 2002, Shenandoah University honored her with its first graduate Alumna of Excellence Award. Thomas spent her early years in Alexandria, Virginia, where she studied piano with National Symphony pianist Marion Herrett and learned cello in the Alexandria City Schools string program. She has guest-conducted dozens of youth orchestras throughout Virginia, and serves on the executive board of the Virginia Band and Orchestra Directors Association. She is the chair of the Fine Arts department at Charlottesville High School and for three years directed the University of Richmond Orchestra. An active performer, Ms. Thomas plays piano and cello with several Charlottesville chamber ensembles, and whenever possible performs with her three siblings as the Mulligan String Quartet.
Dawn AverittDawn Averitt Bridge is a change maker. As a strategic visionary, activist, founder of non-profit organizations, projects and initiatives, and as speaker and adventurer, Bridge makes things happen. For the past 20 years, Bridge has been a leader in the fight against HIV and AIDS, specifically as the disease impacts women and girls. In 2002, Bridge founded The Well Project (www.thewellproject.org), with her brother Richard, to change the course of the AIDS pandemic by focusing on treatment and prevention for women. In 2003, she launched a think tank that became the Women’s Research Initiative on HIV/AIDS to work for “more, better, faster” research in women. Bridge was the driving force behind The Grace Study, the first HIV treatment study to successfully enroll predominantly women, largely people of color. As an advocate for social justice for people living with HIV and AIDS, Bridge has developed programs to increase awareness, accelerate testing, provide access to treatment, disseminate information and expand clinical trials. She has received awards and accolades over the years and is frequently featured in the media. In July 2007, Bridge received a Women Leading Global Change Award from the World YWCA for her leadership in the HIV/AIDS pandemic and in 2010 was named one of the top 100 most influential AIDS activists by POZmagazine. She was appointed to serve on the President’s Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS in 2010. In July 2012, Bridge led the first National HIV Awareness Month in the United States. Bridge is passionate about travel, her family and ending AIDS.
Jim CoanDr. James Coan is Associate Professor of Clinical Psychology and Director of the Virginia Affective Neuroscience Laboratory at the University of Virginia. Dr. Coan's work emphasizes the neuroscience of emotion and social relationships, and has been featured in Science, Nature, the New York Times, The Washington Post, Time Magazine, the New Yorker, The Atlantic, BBC News, Discovery Channel, New Scientist, Scientific American, CBS Sunday Morning, and other major media outlets. His work with John Gottman on behavior coding was featured in Malcolm Gladwell’s best-seller, Blink. In 2010, Dr. Coan received the inaugural Janet Taylor Spence Award for Transformative Early Career Contributions from the Association for Psychological Science, and the Award for Distinguished Early Career Contributions from the Society for Psychophysiological Research. His talk today is entitled, "Why We Hold Hands."
Hawa AhmedHawa Ahmed did not grow up thinking she could attend college. Born a refugee in Chad, Ahmed arrived in the United States with nothing but the clothes on her back. As she watched her parents struggle to make a living, college was simply a fantasy. However, upon receiving a full scholarship to study at the University of Virginia, her whole world changed, catapulting a lifetime of unforeseeable opportunity. Now a junior at UVA, Ahmed has been compelled to service ever since being granted a college education. This past summer, Ahmed rode her bike 4,265 miles across the continental United States. Averaging 80 miles a day, she biked for 11 and a half weeks to raise money and awareness for affordable housing.
Darius NaborsDarius Nabors is not the director, founder or managing partner of anything. He does not own a business. He has not started a non-profit. He works 9-5 and struggles with the same things that everybody does. Picking up groceries, doing laundry on time and Charlottesville traffic. Nabors is not particularly well known for anything other than his love of wolf shirts. He graduated from the University of Virginia in 2007 with a degree in Political Philosophy, Policy and Law. During his final year of school one of his friends nominated him for the superlative of 'Most Likely to Wear a Wolf Shirt'. As the only write-in nominee he was granted the honor and began purchasing wolf shirts. Over the past 7 years, he has received dozen of 'gifts' from friends including wolf towels, wolf posters, wolf puzzles, and photos of random strangers wearing wolf shirts. After graduating from school he moved to South Dakota for two years as part of the Teach For America program. While out there he taught 4th grade on the Rosebud Indian Reservation in Parmelee at He Dog Elementary School. As he expanded the pack of wolf shirt wearers he realized that people want to have fun, enjoy life and live out their dreams. He has, by a simple name change, come up with a way for you to complete your Bucket List and lead a more enjoyable life.
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