x = independently organized TED event

This event occurred on
February 21, 2014
12:00am - 12:00am EST
(UTC -5hrs)
Charlotte, North Carolina
United States

Unexpected: Converging Contradictions
It’s inevitable. Ideas are everywhere and mixing them together with different perspectives brings out fresh ones from new faces. Let’s discover how converging ideas you never thought would come together results in ideas that are remarkably fresh, brave, bold… and unexpected.

Charlotte, North Carolina, 28202
United States
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Speakers may not be confirmed. Check event website for more information.

Carol Quillen

Carol Quillen became the 18th president of Davidson College on August 1, 2011. Since taking office, Quillen has sought to reimagine the liberal arts within the changing landscape of higher education and the global economy, so as to ensure educational excellence and access for all talented students regardless of their financial circumstances. An accomplished administrator and a respected scholar, Quillen came to Davidson from Rice University in Houston, Texas, where she was vice president for international and interdisciplinary initiatives. At Rice, Quillen was also a member of the history faculty, director of the university’s Boniuk Center for the Study and Advancement of Religious Tolerance, and vice provost for academic affairs. Quillen has written two books on Petrarch, as well as scholarly articles, reviews and papers. She received a number of teaching awards during her tenure at Rice, and also has received grants and fellowships from the Social Science Research Council, the Whiting Foundation, the Fulbright Foundation and the Harvard University Center for Renaissance Studies. She holds a B.A. in American history from the University of Chicago, graduating Phi Beta Kappa with special and general honors, and a Ph.D. degree in European history from Princeton.

Melissa Mummert

For the last decade, Rev. Melissa Mummert has worked as an educator and counselor at the Mecklenburg County Jail in Charlotte. That work has informed her advocacy efforts, including the production of two documentary films about the impact of incarceration on families: Perversion of Justice and Life Without: Youth With Incarcerated Parents Tell their Own Stories. Most recently, as part of the non-profit organization Changed Choices, Melissa has focused her efforts on launching a food-service business to create jobs for women with criminal records. That social enterprise, Second Helping, now employs seven formerly incarcerated women. Mummert is an ordained Unitarian Universalist minister as well as a budding singer-songwriter. She released her first CD in 2013, Ready.

Greg Lacour

Greg Lacour is a freelance journalist in Charlotte. A native of New Orleans and graduate of Loyola University in that city, Lacour spent 16 years as a reporter for newspapers in Mississippi and North Carolina, including as a staff writer for The Charlotte Observer from 1999-2008. Lacour was a key contributor to a Knight Ridder Newspapers team that in 2006 won a Pulitzer Prize for Public Service for coverage of Hurricane Katrina on the Mississippi Gulf Coast. He currently serves as a contributing editor at and regular contributor to Charlotte magazine and writes the magazine’s online politics blog, Poking the Hornet’s Nest. Lacour also writes for publications as varied as the Observer and Business North Carolina magazine, plus an assortment of corporate clients. Lacour, 44, owns a home in NoDa, Charlotte’s Arts District — a short walk up the street from the Chop Shop — and enjoys reading, music, and walking his dog on NoDa streets or in Charlotte’s many natural and quasi-natural areas. He is a stickler for linguistic precision and has been told more than once to chill the hell out about it; he will not. He could really use a new laptop.

Antonia Neet Childs

Before she was old enough to look over the kitchen counter, Antonia Neet Childs wanted to grow up to be a cake decorator and own her own business like her Aunt Koona. However, little did she know at 16 years old her ambition would unintentionally lead her to become a product of one of the fastest growing U.S. businesses today — Sex Trafficking which generates domestically a estimated revenue of $32 billion annually. It took four years and the kindness and support of a friend that helped her to remember her Aunt Koona’s Kitchen and fight her way out of commercial sexual exploitation to arise a new woman dedicated to reclaiming that dream of owning a bakery. In 2008, she started running a small bakery out of her one bedroom apartment leveraging the relationships she had with other young women who were in the “the life” to create a financial alternative to prostitution. They laughed, cried and baked their way into Neets Sweets a social business dedicated to economically empowering other survivors to Market Their Minds, And Not Their Bodies!

Tamela Rich

While many people in midlife daydream about packing a duffle bag and hitting the open road, Tamela Rich decided to do something about it. At age 48 she learned to ride a motorcycle. In the three years since, she’s traversed 35 states and 4 provinces on her black BMW, mostly solo. “The number one question I’m asked about my travels is whether I’m afraid to travel alone,” she says. “I think the media perpetuates a world view that people are scary (at best) and evil (at worse) and that’s simply not true.” The people and places Tamela encounters on the highways and byways fuel her books, articles, podcast and personal appearances. Her 2012 book, “Live Full Throttle: Life Lessons from Friends Who Faced Cancer” won three national awards. Tamela combines her roles as Author and Adventurer with her profession as a business ghostwriter of books, articles speeches and presentations for an international clientele. Married with two children in their twenties, she assures us that it’s okay to tell her she doesn’t look old enough to be their mom.

Neale Bayly

With thirty-seven years in the saddle, Neale Bayly has ridden motorcycles in 45 different countries. The British-born Bayly works closely with America’s top motorcycle magazines and web sites, which send him all over the world to ride, test and report back on the best that a two-wheeled lifestyle offers. His 2013 reality series “Neale Bayly Rides” made its debut on Speed Channel (now Fox Sports). The TV series showed Neale’s philanthropic side to the world. It documented a charity ride that he captained through the wilds of Peru, which culminated at a remote mountain orphanage which his charity, Wellspring International Outreach, supports. When not traveling the world for assignments, Neale lives in Charlotte, NC, and spends his free time with his two sons, Luke and Patrick, riding and training on dirt bikes.

Jenifer Daniels

Jenifer Daniels is an accredited public relations professional and award-winning educator, Jenifer Daniels co-founded of a social good startup helping brands build bridges to the community. Jenifer has been a featured speaker at Ignite Charlotte 5, trained over 750 in gaining effective communication skills, and crafted the strategy to help an unknown candidate earn a city council seat in the 17th largest US city. Jenifer is the outgoing chair of the City of Charlotte Neighborhood Matching Grants committee. Jenifer has a masters of arts in communication from Wayne State University, and a certificate in nonprofit management from Duke University. You can follow Jenifer on twitter @thefriendraiser & @prforsocialgood.

David Campbell

David Campbell, CEO and founder of Boxman Studios, harnessed his entrepreneurial spirit and big-picture thinking to build a unique business that turns decommissioned shipping containers into incredible brand experiences. Since 2008, David has been at the leading edge of Shipping Container Architecture, focusing on the design, development, and deployment Shipping Container structures around the world. David, along with his dedicated team, has grown Boxman Studios from a dream into a multi-million dollar business. An unlikely source of inspiration, an headline about shipping container architecture caught David¹s attention and he was hooked, quickly finding out more about how this worked and how he could create a business around it. Realizing there was not a full service provider in the sector. With a concept in hand, a business was created, and incidentally, an entire industry. Founded in 2008, Boxman Studios was born out of David¹s creative approach to business and an innate desire to create unique and one-of-a-kind experiences for his clients and for their consumers. Although many have followed, Boxman Studios remains the leader in custom container modification.

Organizing team


Charlotte, NC, United States
  • Candice Langston
    Speaker Selection/Speaker Coach
  • Mike Watson
    Emcee/Speaker Coach
  • Wendy Fishman
    Stage Manager/Venue Scout/Logistics
  • Jill Bjers
  • Katie Wells
  • Anna Stokkebye
    Social Media
  • Eddie Paik
  • Ann Woo
    Logisitics/Speaker Herding
  • Sarabeth Jones
    Social Media
  • Ron Edelen
    Creative Strategy