x = independently organized TED event

This event occurred on
February 23, 2018
Helena, Montana
United States

In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events are self-organized (subject to certain rules and regulations).

Grandstreet Theatre
325 N Park Ave
Helena, Montana, 59601
United States
Event type:
Standard (What is this?)
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Speakers may not be confirmed. Check event website for more information.

Bruce Day

Executive Director, Helena Food Share Bruce Day is the Executive Director of Helena Food Share, a nonprofit organization dedicated to serving neighbors in need by providing food in a respectful and dignified way. Helena Food Share was founded in 1987 to eliminate hunger in the greater Helena area. Its programs distribute more than 5,000 pounds of food to 100 local families every day it is open. Bruce became Executive Director of the organization in March 2015. Bruce has extensive experience in the nonprofit sector. Prior to joining Helena Food Share, he served as the Executive Director of the Feldenkrais Guild of North America, an international membership organization based in Portland, Oregon. Bruce was also the Executive Director of Rural Employment Opportunities, a nonprofit organization that provides education and job training programs for low-income adults and youth throughout Montana. Bruce has a background in social justice education and served as director of the Social Justice Office for the Roman Catholic Diocese of Eastern Montana (Great Falls-Billings). His work and experience serving on a number of nonprofit boards give him a strong background in nonprofit management, fundraising, education, and public relations. He was a founding board member of Habitat for Humanity in Great Falls and served on the Board of Directors for the Montana Nonprofit Association.

Craig Crawford

Principal, Bryant Elementary School Craig has been working as an educator for 17 years; a principal for eight years, assistant principal for four years, and a teacher for five years. He was one of six siblings, whose father was a superintendent. Craig has experience in working with Pre-K ages through adult education students and also teaches at Carroll College. He has been a victim of bullying and works with bullies in his current role. Craig also serves as president of the Helena Kiwanis Club, where he leads youth leadership camps. He is also on the Board of Directors for the Salvation Army and vice-president of the Montana Association of Elementary and Middle School Principals. www.stopbullying.gov

Dr. Maren Haynes-Marchesini

Adjunct Professor of Music, Helena College Dr. Maren Haynes Marchesini earned her Ph.D. in Ethnomusicology from the University of Washington in December 2017. Her dissertation, '"Punk Rock Calvinists Who Hate the Modern Worship Movement': Ritual, Power, and White Masculinity in Mars Hill Church's Worship Music," focused on the role of music in the rise and fall of Mars Hill Church, a controversial megachurch in Seattle that collapsed amid scandal in 2014. Maren has presented her work at academic conferences in the United States, Canada and the U.K., including the American Academy of Religion, Society of Ethnomusicology, and Popular Culture Association conferences. She is published in the journal Ecclesial Practices and will publish a chapter in a book about punk rock and Christianity in 2019. Presently, Maren teaches at Helena College, co-directs the Helena Youth Chorus, plays cello with the Helena Symphony and gigs with the Variantrio Project.

Dr. Sri Vellanki

Dermatologist Dr. Vellanki is a dermatologist, mother of three, and a U.S. patent holder. She finished medical school at the age of 24 and went on to serve as chief resident at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation. She taught dermatology at Albert Einstein College of Medicine before settling into private practice in Helena, MT. Her ski instructor husband was part of that last fortuitous move. In 2012, she started the process of developing an ergonomic stylus for use on small touchscreen devises. Her inventions received international press at the 2013 Consumer Electronic Show and have been featured on the Today Show and Discovery Channel.

Emily Free Wilson

Artist/Owner, Free Ceramics Emily Free Wilson is a ceramic artist and entrepreneur in Helena, MT. She runs her pottery business Free Ceramics and the Studio Art Center, with her husband Matt Wilson. In 2014, Emily and Matt purchased an old funeral home and converted it into an art center, which is now home to Free Ceramics. They host community events, live music, art classes, and have private studios for artists and the non-profit Girls Thrive. Emily spent ten years as the gallery director at the Archie Bray Foundation. She and Matt have an energetic and creative ten your old son, Clayton. You can find out more about her work at www.freeceramics.com

Jeff Ashley

Senior Engineer, Morrison-Maierle Jeff is a senior engineer at Morrison-Maierle in Helena and has been working there since 2004. His engineering career spans 20 years, with a specialization in drinking water treatment and wastewater (sewage) treatment. He is a registered professional engineer in Montana, Idaho, Washington, Minnesota, Wyoming and New Mexico. He holds a Bachelor's of Science and Masters of Science in Civil Engineering from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Jeff has given dozens of technical presentations, primarily at local Montana engineering conferences. He also presented several times at regional and national professional conferences.

Linnea Sando

Ph.D. Candidate, MSU Linnea Sando is a Ph.D. Candidate in Earth Sciences at Montana State University. She teaches, researches and writes about the geography of our human world. Her research has explored the creation and evolution of place identities across the American West, ethnic landscapes in eastern South Dakota and the influence of agricultural economies on places in the Midwest and West. Linnea's research has been published in peer-reviewed journals and presented at regional and national conferences.

Neal Blossom

Director of Global Environmental and Regulatory Affairs, American Chemet Neal is a chemical engineer and corporate director who has been employed in the chemical manufacturing world for 34 years. He has held varying positions, from the production floor to traveling the world. He has written numerous articles and made presentations globally regarding chemicals and the environment. Currently, he is focusing on Continuous Process Improvement at American Chemet Corporation in East Helena and Royal Metal Powders in Maryville, Tennessee. He is a creative soul who sees the novel, personal side of the geeky world of engineering.

Randy Newberg

TV Host Randy is a CPA by profession and public land advocate by passion. A national spokesman for public lands, Randy has built large media platforms to promote his public land message; a TV show, a podcast, large internet forum and a leading YouTube channel. Randy lives in Bozeman, MT where he volunteers for many conservation organizations and serves on the Board of Directors for the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation. Randy speaks at many national events and has published articles on the topics of public lands, hunting and conservation.

Ray Bieber

Semi-Retired Teacher/Coach Ray is currently the Junior Varsity Tennis Coach at Capital High School in Helena, MT. He has 40 years of coaching experience, including 25 years of swimming and 15 years of tennis. He was the NFICA regional coach of the year in 1995-96 and was inducted into the Wyoming Coaches Hall of Fame in 2001. He led Powell High School to their first overall singles championship in 30 years. For tennis, he holds 10 regional championships, 5 team state championships and 8 team runner-ups. Last year, he was one of nine finalists for the Tennis National Coach of the Year.

Ryan Hazen

Instructional Technologist Ryan Hazen is an instructional technologist, instructional designer, Moodle administrator and educational trainer. He holds Bachelor's degrees in English and Creative Writing from UNC in Chapel Hill and a Master's degree in Education from Montana State University in Bozeman. He specializes in learner engagement through classroom, instructional and online learning design that privileges higher-order thinking and social learning He currently works at Carroll College as an instructional technologist, where he administers Moodle and works directly with faculty to design modern, collaborative student learning experiences. He is the director of Northwest Managers of Technology, Chief "Mootineer" of the MountainMoot, Program Committee member for the USMoot, member of the Board of Directors of the Big Sky Unitarian Universalist Church, and father of two children that continually surprise him with their intelligence and emotional sensitivity. You may also recognize him as a former 8th grade Communication Arts teacher at East Valley Middle School or the "Meat Guy" from Real Food Market.

Tony Zammit

Director, MT Bicycle Guild Tony is an attorney, mountain biker and trail builder. After living in three of the four corners of the United States for school and work, and in Ireland working for an engineering company, Tony and his wife, Ciara Ryan, settled down - for a second time - in Helena. Tony is a part of the group that founded and runs the all-volunteer Montana Bicycle Guild, a Helena-based 501(c)(3) nonprofit. In addition to producing the Montana Enduro Series, a multi-state, nationally-recognized mountain bike race series, Tony has spent time as a photographer and doing web development for the Montana Bicycle Guild and the Montana Enduro Series and building the Vigilante Bike Park at Centennial Park.

Organizing team


Helena, MT, United States