x = independently organized TED event

Theme: Intention

This event occurred on
March 2, 2024
Gainesville, Florida
United States

The mission of TEDxGainesville is to highlight local individuals and stories to open minds and transform the Greater Gainesville community. We will be assembling a panel of speakers and performers that embody the spirit of heritage and inspire our audience with new ideas. By unifying our community’s stakeholders in determination and resolve, we seek to strengthen the bonds that will allow our community to thrive and continue to grow.

The Hippodrome Theatre
25 SE 2nd Pl
Gainesville, Florida, 32601
United States
Event type:
Standard (What is this?)
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Speakers may not be confirmed. Check event website for more information.

Adrian Weeks

President and CEO, ASW Capital Solutions
Adrian S. Weeks is a cutting-edge Businessman, Philanthropist, and Mentor to leaders from both for profit companies and non-profit agencies. Over the span of his twenty-year career, he has led and or aided in the reset of several organizations, giving them the tools to maneuver through budget cuts and outdated strategies. He has counseled politicians, athletes, and professionals from all walks of life. He strongly believes that for projects in business and ministry to be successful, there must be collaboration. In 2019 he founded ASW Capital Solutions. A company dedicated to helping business owners structure their business and secure funding. In 2022, he released his first book entitled, The Apostolic You, dedicated to aiding individuals to find their purpose.

Alleah Friedrichs

Entrepreneur & Mentor
In 2013, after obtaining her MBA and working in clean technology, Alleah started Bliss Wine Imports - a company specializing in organic wine. Alleah’s strategy was to dismiss everything she learned while studying business and instead intentionally manage her thoughts and emotions as a way to foster inspired action. After successfully growing her company, in 2017 Alleah started teaching the process to rewire the brain, thoughts and emotions. Today she spends her time teaching her students how to manage emotions and change historical belief systems as a strategy to change their lives.

Bonnie Habyan

Chief Marketing Officer, Speaker, Author
Bonnie Lorber Habyan is an author, speaker, and Chief Marketing Officer. During her 30-year career, Bonnie has been a corporate spokesperson, news reporter, and radio Love Songs DJ. Her passions are marketing, branding, writing, and family. After publishing her first book in 2022, a funny memoir about her mom, she embraced a journey that has led her on a path of connecting and sharing her life’s experiences. In addition to working full time for a rapidly growing commercial real estate finance company, she hosts a podcast series called Brand the Change and is working on her second book, one that will focus on branding and thought leadership. Bonnie lives with her husband of 32 years, former major league pitcher John Habyan, and has a 26-year-old daughter Holly, who she says is her life’s greatest achievement.

E. Stanley Richardson

Poet Laureate, Alachua County, Florida / Founder and Director of ARTSPEAKSgnv Inc
E. STANLEY RICHARDSON is an American Poet, Actor, Playwright and Producer. Founder / Director of ARTSPEAKSgnv Inc. “Bringing Poetry & People Together" a 501(c)(3) nonprofit dedicated to promoting literacy and well-being through poetry, spoken-word, storytelling and other forms of creative expression. Founder of the Bard & Broadside: North Central Florida Poetry Festival. Author of the award winning book of poetry “Hip Hop Is Dead - Long Live Hip Hop: The Birth Death And Resurrection Of Hip Hop Activism (2017). His poems have been published in various publications, including the collections “Local Lives In A Global Pandemic: Stories from North Central Florida (2021) and “In Fullness Of The Word: An Anthology of Black Poet Laureates” (2023). In 2020 E. Stanley Richardson was appointed Alachua County's Inaugural Poet Laureate and is one of five Florida poets selected by the Florida Council on Arts and Culture to be considered by the Governor as Florida's next Poet Laureate.

Gainesville Circus Center

Non-Profit Performing Arts School & Licensed Childcare Facility
Gainesville Circus Center offers aerial and acrobatics classes, camps, workshops, and performances for kids and adults. Our school accepts both recreational and professionally minded practitioners of circus arts. Our mission is to cultivate an inclusive community through the practice of social circus. Our vision is to make circus and movement arts accessible to children and adults of all backgrounds, to promote cultural and generational exchange, to build a thriving artistic community and performing arts economy, and to promote professionalism and professional development in the field of circus arts.

Linda Rocha

Linda Rocha was Director of Development/Marketing for Dance Alive National Ballet, a professional, international touring Ballet company based in Gainesville for 10 years. Always having the desire to be in the real estate industry, Linda is now a Realtor with Keller Williams Gainesville Realty Partners on Team Dynamo. Linda is currently serving as Vice President on the Board for Alachua County Hospitality Council, a Diplomat for the Greater Gainesville Chamber of Commerce, sits on the Board for the County's Tourist Development Council, has received 2023 Community Service Champion Award, has served on the Advisory Board for the Cotton Club Cultural Museum, and is also participating in this year's Leadership Gainesville Program. She has a passion for this community, its rich history, arts and culture.

Maryann Walsh

Registered Dietitian & Consultant
Registered Dietitian and nutrition expert, Maryann Walsh has been featured in numerous publications and media sources including Forbes, Shape, Food Network and Women’s Health. Maryann possesses bachelors degrees in Biology and Dietetics and a masters degree in Food and Nutrition and is currently pursuing her PhD in Psychology. Maryann resides in South Florida and is a mom to a 19 month old baby girl and a maltipoo pup named Cannoli.

Matthew Courtney

Educational Knowledge Broker, Author, Consultant
Dr. Matthew B. Courtney is a passionate advocate for education and a specialist in evidence-informed school improvement. He began his career as a music educator before moving on to leadership roles within the nonprofit, higher education, and state government sectors. Dr. Courtney is a published researcher whose work focuses on school improvement. As the founder of Courtney Consulting LLC, he’s advised schools on leveraging evidence-based decision-making to accelerate student achievement. His impact extends beyond students and schools, influencing state-wide educational policies. Dr. Courtney's expertise and dedication continue to bridge gaps in education, fostering progress and development in diverse communities.

Michael Beard

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Leader
Michael Beard is an energetic and captivating speaker in the Leadership and Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion space. With over 2 decades of leadership experience, he is currently focused on developing new ways to exceed the cultural and community productivity limits of nonprofit community action agencies and all levels of the educational sector. Elevated's platform involves creating meaningful workshops that facilitate safe constructive conversations that promote the development of trust within the organization. As a product of the University of Florida, Michael has had the opportunity to manage corporate and municipal staff. He has been tapped for leadership training at Bloomberg, Head Start Conferences throughout the US, Universities, North Central Florida Center for Community Enrichment, My Village Project, and many more. Michael is also certified by Cornell University as a Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion trainer.

Rebecca Rolland

Speech pathologist, Harvard lecturer, and author
Rebecca Rolland is a Harvard lecturer, speech-language pathologist, and author of The Art of Talking with Children (2022). She focuses on helping adults have great conversations with children, building children's skills and enhancing relationships.

Sriram Natarajan

CTO / Co-founder, AI Startup
Dr. Sriram Natarajan, Founder/CTO of an AI startup and former Engineering Lead at Google, played a pivotal role in developing Google Assistant for cars, significantly enhancing AI's role in automotive technology. He earned his MS and Ph.D. in Computer Engineering from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, holds multiple US patents, and has been honored with an NSF grant and leadership awards for his contributions to Internet security. A strong advocate for responsible AI, Dr. Natarajan is committed to creating AI solutions that are not only efficient but also ethically sound, enhancing lives while upholding ethical standards. As a TEDx speaker, he shares his extensive AI knowledge, inspiring audiences to recognize and embrace AI's transformative power. He is also dedicated to fostering diversity and inclusivity in the tech industry, actively mentoring engineers and underrepresented groups to guide them towards successful careers in software engineering.

Stephen Courson

Entrepreneur, Speaker
After retiring at 34 and leaving the corporate world, Stephen founded the True Wealth Experience to promote financial wellness and lifestyle design. With a focus on the 4 Types of Wealth and finding your WHY, his unique perspectives on wealth-building and investing your time, energy and money will spice up conversations. He has a wonderful wife, Lindsay and 3 crazy kids (Drake + twins Reese and Scarlett). A lover of sports, geeky stuff and anything that gets his adrenaline going, he brings an infectious energy to every stage he's on: virtual or live.

Organizing team


Gainesville, FL, United States


Gainesville, FL, United States