x = independently organized TED event

Theme: The Age of Wonder

This event occurred on
November 3, 2018
Perth, Western Australia

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).

Perth Concert Hall
5 St Georges Tce
Perth, Western Australia, 6000
Event type:
Standard (What is this?)
See more ­T­E­Dx­Perth events


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

Amanda Lambros

Forensic sexologist
Amanda Lambros loves to share her passion for all things relationships. She seeks to understand why relationships work and how to positively build and improve them. By teaching effective communication skills, she helps couples improve their emotional connection and strengthen their relationship foundations. Amanda is Vice-President of the Marriage and Relationship Educators of Australia and has 15 years experience as relationship counsellor and clinical supervisor. She has an education background in Health Sciences and Ethics and Masters Degrees in Counselling and Forensic Sexology.

Ben McAllister

Quantum physicist
Ben McAllister is a researcher and passionate science communicator hailing from an independent theatre background, driven to share the wonder and importance of science with the world. He was a Finalist at the British Council’s 2018 FameLab Australia and the Asia-Pacific Trans-Tasman 3 Minute Thesis competition. Ben is a final year PhD Student with the ARC Centre of Excellence for Engineered Quantum Systems (EQUS).

Charlie Mgee

Permaculture Troubadour
Charlie Mgee is a ukulele-strumming troubadour who combines a love of music with a passion for sustainability. As founding member and leader of the world’s first ecological electroswing band, Charlie uses music to promote permaculture (a system of ecologically resilient design). His band, Formidable Vegetable, are pioneers of several new genres of music for change, including chook-hop, green-house, compostable-apocalypso and dungstep.

Damien Norris

Natural movement specialist
Damien has led an unconventional life. At 16 he left school to be a gymnast, but in his early 20s that dream was cut short through injury. With no secondary qualifications, Damien traveled and later returned to school as a mature-age student. After completing a range of degrees he was a human rights campaigner and aid worker in East Timor, a philosopher, university lecturer, civil and criminal lawyer and public guardian. In 2016 Damien discovered he was going to be a mature-age, first-time father. He challenged himself to get back into shape and in doing so discovered a whole new perspective on life and wellness. He is the founder of the 'Wilding Project' in Perth, Western Australia.

Drisana Levitzke-Gray

Hearing diversity activist
Drisana is the embodiment of the concept of ‘deaf gain’, not ‘hearing loss’. She cares deeply about encouraging the wider community to accept diversity. Drisana was the first deaf Auslan-user to fulfil her civic duty as a juror, deliver a TEDx talk in Auslan and consistently promotes a positive image of deafness, which states loudly and proudly: “It’s OK to be deaf”. Drisana was the 2015 Young Australian of the Year and West Australian Young Person of the Year in recognition of her passion and dedication in advocating for the human rights of deaf people.

Elise Reitze

Music producer
Elise and Rosie met when they were 14 years old at an afterschool percussion program at the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts (WAAPA). When the opportunity came, they gave each other the nod of respect at how great they thought each other’s solos were. Elise and Rosie continued to make music together, later studying music at WAAPA and UWA, majoring in Percussion and Composition. As they began performing as “Feels”, Elise and Rosie saw that female, trans and non-binary electronic artists were underrepresented as music producers. To this end, Elise and Rosie co-founded music community WOMPP (Women of Music Production Perth) to help improve equal gender representation within the Perth music scene. WOMPP inspires and nurtures diversity in Australia’s electronic music culture and provides a safe place for learning and growth. In 2018, WOMPP won a WAM Award for Label of the Year.

Glenn Murray

Cyber security expert
Glenn is the Chief Executive and Managing Director of Sapien cyber, the creators of sophisticated systems designed to detect cyber-attacks before they make impact.

Hannah Moore

Childhood disease researcher
Hannah Moore is an epidemiologist specialising in infectious disease. As a researcher, she has deep understanding about the power of data collection, interpretation, synthesis and analysis to identify and help solve disease. Hannah is particularly interested in how data can be used to help solve diseases that affect children. Her work on Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV), one of the most common viruses that affects the lungs of babies and young children, has helped estimate burden, risk factors and seasonal patterns in different populations. This understanding can be used for establishing the need for an RSV vaccination program. Hannah is also a tireless advocate for women in science and for addressing the unique challenges that women face in science. Hannah is Head of the Infections and Vaccines Program and Infectious Disease Epidemiology Team within the Wesfarmers Centre of Vaccines and Infectious Diseases at the Telethon Kids Institute.

Helen Street

Social wellbeing researcher
Helen believes that the way children are raised and taught affects their lifelong vulnerability to depression and anxiety. Helen and her partner, Neil Porter, developed the Positive Schools Initiative to support equity, motivation and wellbeing in young people. In 2018 the Positive Schools conferences celebrated their tenth anniversary across four states in Australia. Helen is a regular advisor to Western Australia's Centre for Clinical Interventions and Association of Mental Health. She writes regularly and presents often on TV, radio and in other media, including a year as Channel Ten morning show The Circle’s resident psychologist. Helen is an honorary Associate Professor in the graduate school of education at UWA, the chair of Positive Schools with Neil and, most importantly of all, a besotted mother of three beautiful girls. In her spare time, she loves to paint and is thrilled to have a portrait of her youngest daughter accepted for the Black Swan 2018 Salon des Refuses.

Joshua Portlock

Aviation designer
A pioneer in the electric drone industry, Joshua Portlock realised the principles of drone flight could be scaled up to make human transportation viable. Today, Joshua designs and manufactures propulsion systems that will usher in the era of electric aviation. Understanding that electric power has significant technical and operational advantages over internal combustion engines used in aviation, Joshua’s mission is to disrupt the general aviation industry. He envisions a near future of vertical take off and landing air taxis and electric fixed wing aircraft powered by renewable energy.

Kai Lovel

Young entrepreneur
Kai is a 14-year-old radio broadcaster, writer, and speaker and entrepreneur, motivated by social justice and a passion for content creation. At age 12, he established The Tech Thread Co, his first e-commerce enterprise, immersing himself in the realities of business. He went on to start Millennial Studios, a media incubator for young people with the vision of creating a platform for impactful content. Now focusing on his main venture, peer-to-peer tutoring agency Student Tutors United, Kai continues to advocate for young people’s potential.

Kate McIvor

Community builder
While Perth will always be home, Kate's work in the travel industry has allowed her to meet people from all over the world. She is the co-owner and Director of Travel Execs, a mobile travel agency that allows people to work from anywhere in the world. She is a business coach and trainer, a marriage celebrant, and a believer in the power of education, understanding and action to help create a better world.


Perth rapper Mathas is a multi-faceted artist, difficult to pin down with any rigid genre boundaries. The themes woven into his music challenge status quo politics and business-as-usual, revealing a keen social conscience. A ferociously talented songwriter, producer, poet and performer, he was the first rap or electronic artist to win the WA Music Industry’s coveted Song of the Year award and is also a three-time winner of WAM Urban Act of the Year.

Pete Byfield

Pete Byfield's musical origins began in his teens when the only music teacher in town taught his mates, who in turn taught him to play guitar. The teacher was a post-war immigrant, one of many who shaped Pete’s town, and him. Over the next 40 years, Pete played in cover bands across the Western Australian wheatbelt. In 2014 Pete began writing original music. His first recorded song, Wialki, was picked up by Western Australian Music’s Sounds of the Wheatbelt project. Encouraged, he wrote a further sixteen songs and released an album, "ONE". He won WA Country Music Awards' Album of the Year (2016) and was nominated for Male Artist of the Year (2016, 2017). He was also nominated for Country Song of the Year (2016) and for Best Regional Act (2017) at the WAM Awards. Pete continued recording singles and is working on a new album. He will be touring Australia from January to June 2019 on his Back to the Garden Tour at venues including farm gates, community gardens and bush tucker trails.

Rory Moke

Maori cultural ambassador

Rosie Taylor

Music producer

Simone Pettigrew

Behavioural change researcher
Simone develops behaviour change campaigns to encourage health and wellbeing. Her work has involved varied issues including tobacco and alcohol consumption, nutrition, physical activity, ageing and mental health. Her current research focus is on autonomous vehicles and their potential to make people happier and healthier. Simone is eager to ensure that the benefits of driverless vehicles become realised by all. As a self-confessed workaholic, she’s looking forward to the day when she can get more done on the way to work in a driverless vehicle. Simone is a Research Professor in the School of Psychology at Curtin University. She holds a Bachelor of Economics, a Master of Commerce, and a PhD in Consumer Research.

Simone Vitali

Zoo veterinarian
Simone believes zoos have an important role to play in species conservation, and that species conservation is indeed a worthy cause. She helps develop the veterinary conservation expertise in Perth Zoo and is interested in the ethical and welfare aspects of keeping animals in zoos. As Senior Veterinarian, Simone oversees all veterinary clinical work, research and education that takes place in Perth Zoo’s Veterinary Department. Simone is also an Adjunct Associate Professor and collaborative partner for the Conservation Medicine program run by the College of Veterinary Medicine at Murdoch University.

Zena Ibrahim

Diversity advocate
Zena is a member of the Access Department at UWA, advocating and representing students with chronic illness, disability and mental illness. She is also volunteer with PennyAppeal Australia, a not-for-profit organisation working in over 30 crisis-hit countries worldwide, and a speaker with BeyondBlue sharing her own personal story about mental illness. Zena recently returned to her birth religion (Islam) as a revert and is a vocal activist and advocate for women in Islam and mental health within the Muslim community. She is a postgraduate dental student at the University of Western Australia.

Organizing team


Perth, Western Australia, Australia


Perth, Australia
  • Richard Watson
    Post production
  • Rob Lines