x = independently organized TED event


This event occurred on
October 13, 2023
Hagerstown, Maryland
United States

There is still much work to be done regarding global gender equality. Mirroring the theme of TEDWomen 2023, TEDxHagerstownWomen will gather women across the tri-state area to amplify and accelerate ideas that inspire women to walk forward with confidence. We'll joyfully celebrate those taking bold strides into the future and those working unapologetically to make big dreams become reality. We will set the stage for speakers to demonstrate luminous new thinking and ideas designed to uplift and inspire us all.

Kepler Performing & Visual Arts Center
11512 Kepler Drive
Hagerstown, Maryland, 21742
United States
Event type:
TEDxWomen (What is this?)
See more ­T­E­Dx­Hagerstown­Women events


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

Chekesha “Kay” Ellis

Recovery Activist
Kay is a Certified Peer and Founder of Chase No More Recovery Group, an organization that provides support, and community outreach to individuals suffering with substance use disorder. Her own recovery journey began 13 years ago after a nine-year addiction to prescribed opioids. She has a passion for helping others suffering with substance use disorder. Kay is the Author of A Life Of Kayos-My Opioid Journey through Hell Hope and Healing. Kay has been featured in print and broadcast media outlets including Google, YouTube, KYW News radio, Recovery Today Magazine, and Jersey's Best magazine. She has been a guest on Podcasts, including The Bubble Hour, The Numinous, Sober Curious, and Sober as a Mother. She is featured in an ABC documentary titled "Listen to the Silence, Women Trapped in the Opioid Epidemic." Kay lives in New Jersey with her son, who was born at 24 weeks and weighed one pound and ten ounces, now 11 years old.

Cherish McMillan

Author and Certified Life Coach
Best selling author, certified life coach, professional development trainer, college and career readiness coach and entrepreneur, Cherish is known as “The F.O.C.U.S Trainer” and teaches students and professionals how to excel in school and at work. She has over a decade of experience in communications and education. Cherish has worked as a communications professional in government, nonprofit, education and travel. She has taught middle school and high school students, she currently teaches students at Hagerstown Community College. Cherish has always been passionate about public service. She created and curates the Washington County Juneteenth Author Showcase which is a platform that celebrates local Black authors. Loyal to her roots, Cherish has put the principles she was taught by her family at the forefront of her life’s choices. Her family honors hard work and she continues to respect that pillar by pursuing success and helping others succeed as well.

Dr. Gloria Hill Murray

Speaker + Counselor + Host of transformative Women's events
Dr. Gloria Hill-Murray and her spouse have seven adult children and four grandchildren and currently reside in Hagerstown Maryland. Gloria has a Doctor of Education Degree in Community Care and Counseling with an emphasis in Marriage and Family from Liberty University and she is an ordain Pastor. Dr. Gloria identifies herself as a “country girl with a city flair” and is the founder of Flair Now Inc. a non-profit organization establish to help women identified their passion, in their “now” season by collaborating with resources in the community to assist with their endeavors. She is an American Inspirational Speaker, Counselor, Life Coach, and Conference Host of Women’s events. She is known primarily for her work in helping youth overcome challenges with their families and communities. She inspires women to connect with their passion for life, by overcoming life’s struggles. She is a writer of poetic affirmations, inspiring women through daily motivational poems.

Ellie Harvey

Ellie is developing skills as an athlete, musician, singer/songwriter, big sister and friend. In 2020 Ellie started a girl’s business club with the mission to empower, develop skills and build relationships among young girls. She connected girls from all over the country with newsletters, Zoom calls, and service projects. Her love of music and singing is shared with just about everyone she meets. Developing and sharing this talent has led her to realize how each person has unique talents that are important to recognize, uncover and entertain. She loves music, art, horseback riding, softball and traveling, especially if it is to a beach! Her career aspiration is in property development.

Melissa Drew

Digital Transformation Executive
Melissa Drew is a Digital Transformation Executive and a Hagerstown resident with 29+ years of procurement and supply chain experience. She creates innovative strategies by connecting the dots between data, technology, automation, process, and culture combined with the end user experience to create proven, value-driven results. Melissa is a visionary, board member, mentor, author, and cancer warrior. A founding member of Women Leaders in Data and AI, she has been recognized as a Leading Data Consultant & a Top 25 Global Consultant. This year Melissa was awarded Top 50 Thought Leaders and Influencers to Work with in 2023 and received #34 on the Top 100 Global Women in Supply Chain. Melissa serves as president of the non-profit Blended Pledge, supporting educational grants to women and underrepresented minorities to participate or speak at industry conferences.

Melissa Noel

Business Owner + CEO
Melissa Noel owns five businesses and is the CEO of Noel’s Fire Protection LLC. She represents women in the male-dominated construction arena and will bring an amazing idea to the stage: How to Use Your Nurturing Side as Superpower. Melissa serves on multiple boards and belongs to several local community organizations. She has been married to her husband, Brian, for 31 years and has been self-employed for almost 20 years. A mom of three and grandma to one, she is currently pursuing her degree in Political Science at University of Maryland Global Campus.

Naimah Khalifa Bhuruku

Speaker, Facilitator, and Empathic Leadership Advocate
Naimah is a passionate diversity, equity, inclusion and accessibility practitioner, a trained facilitator, speaker, and a creative enthusiast. Her own journey of seeking a sense of belongingness, connection and acceptance while navigating through grief and loss, deepened her curiosity of self and others. What she discovered on that journey is both the absence and value of empathy. Naimah challenges individuals to unveil the many layers they hide behind, to uncover the priceless gift of knowing the beauty, essence, and power of their foundational selves. Her own journey as a cancer survivor/thriver and grief has propelled her to live a life aligned and steeped in purposeful presence, with balance and unapologetic radical joy. To Naimah, there is nothing more to life than living and no purpose without giving. Her life mantra is to live the heavenliness out of life, and she seeks every opportunity to do just that.

Organizing team


Hagerstown, MD, United States


Hagerstown, MD, United States
  • Dani Sweeney
  • Jessica Scott