x = independently organized TED event

Theme: Redefine

This event occurred on
April 28, 2018
Bozeman, Montana
United States

TEDxBozeman is Montana’s first and longest-running TEDx event. This year's theme, Redefine, has been chosen as the theme for the seventh annual TEDxBozeman event which will be held Saturday, April 28, 2018.

Join us on a journey to redefine what's possible, redefine the status quo, and help redefine the world at TEDxBozeman. Our world is constantly in a state of redefinition, from how we communicate and work to how we eat and live. As we bring our perspective to a more local view, we will explore how Montana’s traditions, land, and way of life are constantly changing to align with ever-changing expectations.

"You can focus on things that are barriers or you can focus on scaling the wall or redefining the problem." - Tim Cook

Embracing this change and growth in our local communities brings many opposing viewpoints and ideas to the table. While growth can be good, it does require some redefinition of who we are, how we live, and the choices we make.

Each year the TEDxBozeman team strives to create a lineup of individuals with fresh perspectives on varied topics. Organizers aim to highlight presenters as diverse as the audience which they address. While TED mandates various rules and regulations that every locally-organized TEDx must follow, the TEDxBozeman team made the additional commitment to showcase only individuals with a connection to Montana.

TEDxBozeman 2018 will be held Saturday, April 28th at The Commons. Tickets will go on sale in March. Stay tuned to TEDxBozeman’s website and social media channels for additional announcements, or contact Co-Executive Coordinators, Veronika Sieben and Brittany Watkins at with any questions.

The Commons
1794 E. Baxter Lane
Bozeman, Montana, 59718
United States
Event type:
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Speakers may not be confirmed. Check event website for more information.

Bridget Wilkinson

Bridget Wilkinson hails from the bustling metropolis of Moscow, Idaho. She graduated from the University of Idaho (go Vandals!) in 2007 with degrees in Spanish and Public Relations, and shortly thereafter moved to Bozeman. Bridget is also a Bobcat with her master's degree in Higher Education from MSU. In 2016, Bridget was named 20 Under 40 recipient, an honor that spotlights southwest Montana's top young business professionals. Additionally, Bridget was selected to be one of ten executive directors in the US to participate in the CFLeads Executive Leadership Institute for community foundations. Beyond her fascination and involvement with her community, Bridget enjoys reading, traveling to visit family and friends, volunteering and climbing peaks with her four-legged Labrador daughter, Kai, and her dreamboat husband Tyler Wilkinson.

Chris Hedrick

Chris has spent 30 years innovating in technology and learning. He's been CEO of a corporate learning technology company, CEO of a new university program in Rwanda, first employee of the Gates Foundation, and a Peace Corps volunteer and country director in Senegal. He's been an elected school board director, chairman of the board of the Evergreen State College, and served on the board of PATH, the global health non-profit. Chris graduated from Stanford University and was a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford University, where he played varsity rugby and basketball. He and his wife Jennifer Beaston Hedrick, who is the executive director of Eagle Mount, are raising their four boys in Bozeman. The Hedrick family loves outdoor recreation in Montana. Chris enjoys trail running, competing in both the Bridger Ridge Run and The Rut run at Big Sky this summer.

Dan Doty

Dan Doty is a husband, father, writer, filmmaker, coach, host of the Evryman Podcast, and founder of Evryman. He spent many years leading groups of struggling young men through the wilderness and later had a successful career as a director and producer of the hit tv show MeatEater. Early on he became obsessed with what it takes for boys to grow into healthy, happy, impactful men. To this end, his personal mission is to help boys and men be themselves all the way through and to experience the full spectrum of opportunities life has to offer. As part of his role as CEO of Evryman, Dan is the lead facilitator of men's retreats and wilderness expeditions, and he has helped seed and support 75 men's groups around the country and the world. He is an avid hunter and is most at home on extended backcountry trips or wrestling with his son Duke.

Dr. Angela Des Jardins

Dr. Des Jardins, a solar physicist by training, is the Director of the Montana Space Grant Consortium and Montana NASA EPSCoR, and is an Assistant Research Professor of Physics at Montana State University. Montana Space Grant and NASA EPSCoR are programs that work to strengthen education and research in Montana in fields related to aerospace science and engineering. In addition, Angela is the innovator of the NASA Eclipse Ballooning Project, which engaged 55 student teams from across the country in sending live video (a first!) from high altitude balloons to the NASA website and NASA TV on eclipse day 2017. Angela is proud to be a third generation Bozemanite. Her professional mission is to use the ability of space to ignite the human sense of wonder.

Dr. Jordy Hendrikx

Dr. Hendrikx is an engaging educator, speaker and active researcher, with a PhD focused on snow and avalanche research, as well as professional avalanche qualifications and experience. He has published peer-reviewed articles related to snow, avalanches, risk, decision-making, hydrology and climate change in numerous international journals. His work has been featured in Nature, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times and Powder Magazine. He was recently featured in Powder Magazine’s award winning Human Factor 2.0 multimedia series, and has been a subject expert for the Weather Channel’s show “Strangest Weather on Earth” Series II and III. He has published over 120 reports, popular articles, proceedings papers and peer reviewed papers on snow and avalanches. His recent work presents a new paradigm, focused more on human-dimensions recognizing the need to better understand terrain choices and decision making to reduce avalanche fatalities.

Dr. Luke McKay

Dr. McKay is a microbial ecologist and astrobiologist at Montana State University who investigates extremophiles, or, life that thrives in harsh environments. Born and raised in Alabama where he received a BS in molecular biology from the University of Alabama at Birmingham, Luke then went to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill to complete a MS and PhD in hydrothermal vent microbiology. During his career he has traveled twice to an ocean depth of 1.25 miles in the Alvin submersible, participated in the first investigatory cruise of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, and lived at Palmer Station, Antarctica to study ecosystem changes due to rapid warming. Luke's current work focuses on thermally active environments in Yellowstone - both surface hot springs and hydrothermal vents beneath the lake - where he links together chemical measurements with DNA analyses to understand how microorganisms live happily under such conditions. By studying the limits of life, Luke attempts to address fundamental questions such as how we got here and where else, beyond Earth, life might exist.

Improv on the Verge

Paige, Molly, and Justin regularly perform and teach improv at the Verge Theater; a community theater which promotes an environment of acceptance and fun for individuals of all ages and abilities. The Verge Theater's mission is to create off-beat, thought-provoking, heart-inspiring theater and theater education. We strive to provide an experience which is masterful in execution, empowering to children, teens, adults, and evocative of our vibrant local community.

Lorca Smetana

Lorca Smetana is fiercely for resilience, for feeding the human capacity to recover, sustain and build new growth and health from crisis, change and burnout. As a resilience teacher and coach for students, businesses and communities she has worked with educators, emergency responders, medical personnel, cancer support, death workers and caregivers to make each stronger and happier. She is known in the community through teaching at Montana State University, through her multiple presentations as a Pecha Kucha Bozeman speaker and other keynotes, her work with the Mountains of Courage conference on death & dying, her buoyant and thought-provoking community resilience games and her large flock of white homing doves who fly for the valley's memorials and celebrations.

Meredith Scully

Meredith Scully received her undergraduate degree in Psychology from CU Boulder. She continued her education by pursuing a Masters in Clinical Social Work from Fordham University. Having a strong desire to work with children with learning disabilities, she received a Masters in Education from Teachers College at Columbia University with a dual certification in Special Education and Elementary Education. She has comprehensive training in the Orton-Gillingham approach from the IMSE. She worked for many years in the public school system in New York. She and her family moved to Bozeman five years ago. Seeing a need, she founded the first and only non-profit school in Montana that is specifically designed to meet the needs of students with disabilities. Meredith is happily married to an amazing man and has three terrific children. In her spare time you can find her trail running, riding, baking with her kids, and spending time with friends and family.

Micah Fink

Micah Fink was raised in upstate New York and joined the military in 2003, later becoming a US Navy Seal and paramilitary contractor. He is the founder and CEO of Montana-based nonprofit, Heroes and Horses, and is known for the execution of ideas that change people’s lives through action, inspiration, and the shifting of beliefs. Micah is an innovator in every sense of the word. When he was a young boy, Micah’s father told him that the key to success was to “look at what everyone else is doing, and do the exact opposite,” and Micah has lived that advice to a ‘t’. Micah started Heroes and Horses in 2014 after realizing that, despite the thousands of PTSD-related nonprofits, and the billions spent every year, the statistics on veteran suicide and addiction was growing rapidly. In response to these staggering statistics, Micah created a veteran nonprofit with programming that was unlike anything else out there. Micah continues to inspire groups of people, from all different walks of life, through his unique approach to “motivational speaking”, and is frequently hired by sports teams and large corporations to ignite innovate thinking within their team members.

Molly Caro May

Molly Caro May is a writer whose work explores body, place and the foreign. She teaches writing workshops across the country, though once cut her teeth as a fruit-picker, artist's model, and editor. Reviewers called her first memoir, The Map of Enough: One Woman's Search for Place, “addictive” and wrote, “May joins the ranks of Gretel Ehrlich and Annie Proulx, celebrants of sagebrush, big skies, and journeys of self-discovery.” Her second book, Boddy Full of Stars: Female Rage and My Passage Into Motherhood, excerpted in TIME and Lenny Letter, has pried open a conversation about postpartum challenge and been called a “searingly eloquent memoir.” She is the co-founder of Thunderhead Writers’ Collective. Her mission is to democratize expression and work with story as a healing tool. Molly grew up in five countries, attended Middlebury College and now makes a home in Bozeman with her husband and two daughters.

Raison D’être Dance Project

Raison D’etre Dance Project was founded in 2017 by Erin Levy and Genevieve Trygstad-Burke in order to foster collaboration between musicians, artists, dancers and choreographers. The mission of Raison D’etre Dance Project is to create innovative professional dance productions that inspire a love and appreciation of dance and music in the community.

Summit Highsteppers

Dancers: John Schlender, Kathryn Howe, Jason Baide, Emily Reeves, Tyler de Caussin, Sara Kremer, Stephen Dobelbower, and Kathi Dobelbower. Music: "Joshua Fit the Battle" from the album Live in Philadelphia by Gordon Webster, find more at "Big Apple Contest” from the album Swingmatism by The Solomon Douglas Swingtet, find more at

Vasu Sojitra

When Vasu was only nine months old, he was diagnosed with septicemia, resulting in the amputation of his right leg. Since then, he has not looked back; with the help of his parents, brother, and friends, Vasu has built up the confidence needed to face new challenges and ski bigger mountains with grace, courage, strength, humor, and unwavering determination. Vasu witnessed extreme poverty growing up in India, and has been living most of his life with a “dis”ability. He looks at these experiences as a blessing; they have allowed him to truly hone in on his ability to empathize with others. He continues to strengthen this muscle by pursuing his passion of helping others through his work in advocacy at Eagle Mount Bozeman and as a professional athlete. Vasu will continue to inspire others to be a positive influence in their own communities by pushing personal limits, putting others first, and encouraging everyone to believe in themselves and in their own unique abilities!

Whitney Tilt

As Director of Land and Wildlife Conservation for The Arthur M. Blank Family Foundation, Whitney works with the Mountain Sky Guest Ranch and West Creek Ranch in Emigrant, Montana, as well as addressing larger natural resource issues in the Northern Yellowstone ecosystem. Whitney is also author of the Flora of the Yellowstone. Throughout his career Whitney has focused on natural resource conservation issues, working from the “radical center” to identify common ground and sustainable solutions. Issues addressed range from Colorado River water allocations and black-footed ferret recovery to Asian tiger conservation and evaluation of federal fisheries programs. Whitney has worked for the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation and the Sonoran Institute, among others. He earned a Masters of Environmental Science from the Yale School of Forestry and began his introduction to the Greater Yellowstone Region by ranching in the Tetons of Idaho.

Organizing team


Bozeman, MT, United States