x = independently organized TED event

Theme: Resilience: Bridging Divides

This event occurred on
June 30, 2021
7:00pm - 9:00pm CDT
(UTC -5hrs)
Nashville, Tennessee
United States

In a special TEDxNashville series, hosted at different, local venues throughout 2021, we want to shine a light on the human instinct to pick up the pieces and push forward. We’ll explore — and celebrate — our relationship with the root of all survival: resilience.

How do we find strength when we’re up against insurmountable odds? How do we walk back from a suicide plan put into motion? How do we recover and build a bridge after parents reject us? And what comes after we’ve risen to the occasion and succeeded?

These questions are at the heart of the human experience, and they’re at the heart of some of our talks this year, as we celebrate our connection with the hope, joy, determination, and belonging that keeps us all going.

City Winery
609 Lafayette Street
Nashville, Tennessee, 37203
United States
Event type:
Salon (What is this?)
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Speakers may not be confirmed. Check event website for more information.

Allison Russell

Artist, Activist, Songwriter and Multi-instrumentalist
Allison Russell is an artist, activist, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist of extraordinary power, talent and grace. A founding member of the acclaimed groups Our Native Daughters and Birds of Chicago (with her husband/musical partner JT Nero), the Montreal native has begun to emerge as a potent force among creative circles worldwide. On her debut solo album Outside Child (Fantasy Records / Concord), Allison unpacks the story of her traumatic childhood in a deeply moving, unforgettable song-cycle of courage, empathy, and love. Outside Child is a powerful and warm statement of hope, resilience and the redemptive power of art – asserted from a place of healing, of motherhood, of partnership – and from a new home made in Nashville. Allison has been nominated as Emerging Act of the Year by the Americana Music Association, has been named one of the top artists to watch in 2021 by Rolling Stone, and her debut album was recently placed on the long-list for the prestigious Polaris Prize.

Elizabeth Zechmeister

Cornelius Vanderbilt Professor of Political Science
Dr. Elizabeth “Liz” Zechmeister is the Cornelius Vanderbilt Professor of Political Science at Vanderbilt University. Professor Zechmeister received her Ph.D. from Duke University in 2003. Her research focuses on comparative political behavior and public opinion, in particular in Latin America. Her work includes studies of voting, ideology, political parties, representation, charisma, and crisis. Zechmeister has received support from the National Science Foundation for investigations into the public opinion consequences of terrorist threats and natural disasters.

Katie Pruitt

Katie Pruitt is a Nashville transplant from the suburbs of Atlanta, Georgia. Pruitt tackles human topics such as religion, mental health, and contemporary love songs with a modern twist. Her passionate delivery and powerful message brought her to a CBS This Morning performance and are the reason her name has graced bills like Pilgrimage Festival, sharing a stage with Bob Weir, and opening for Neil Young. After the 2020 release of her album, Expectations, Pruitt was named one of Rolling Stone’s “Artists You Need to Know” and was featured on NPR’s All Songs Considered for her song "Grace Has A Gun." Not long after that Expectations appeared at 16th on NPR’s best albums of 2020 list, and ranked third in Rolling Stone’s “30 Best Country and Americana Albums of 2020.” Katie was nominated for both a Grammy (Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical), and American Songwriter’s Best Emerging Artist.

Zulfat Suara

Nashville Metro Council Member At Large
Zulfat was elected as an at large council member in 2019. With over 34,000 votes from a very diverse population she became the first Muslim elected to the Metropolitan Govt. of Nashville and Davidson County and the first immigrant elected to an at-large position. She is the first Muslim woman elected in the State of Tennessee and first Nigerian woman elected to any office in the US. She started the Hardeman County Junior Achievement and continues to advocate for children as a board member of the PENCIL Foundation. Zulfat has served in a number of leadership positions, including Chair of the American Muslim Advisory Council and State President of the Business and Professional Women. She is active politically as treasurer of the National Women’s Political Caucus and chair of the TN Women’s Day on the Hill. Zulfat is a CPA and Asst. Controller at Meharry Medical College. She is married to her wonderful husband of 29 years- Dr. Rahaman Suara. They are blessed with five amazing children.

Organizing team


Nashville, TN, United States


Nashville, TN, United States
  • Jon Shearer