Chicago Salon
x = independently organized TED event


May 10, 2024
2:30pm - 6:30pm CDT
(UTC -5hrs)
Chicago, Illinois
United States
This event is open to the public.
Tickets are available.

TEDxChicago dives into the world of design, engaging exciting Chicago visionaries and designers who are creating our future. Join speakers, artists, peformers, collaborators, the design community, and many others for a thrilling event.

More to be announced in early 2024.

The Merchandise Mart
222 W Merchandise Mart Plaza
Chicago, Illinois, 60654
United States
Event type:
Salon (What is this?)
See more ­T­E­Dx­Chicago ­Salon events


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

Douglas Farr

Douglas Farr FAIA serves as the President of Farr Associates, a pioneering architecture and urban design firm based in Chicago, recognized by the New York Times for its leadership in ecologically sensitive architecture. Listed among Planetizen's 100 Most Influential Urbanists, Farr is a prominent architect, urbanist, and author, delivering keynote speeches across 37 states to inspire and shape sustainable urban practices. His contributions include founding Carbon Free Chicago, co-curating the ENERGY REVOLUTION exhibit, and establishing Chicago’s Climate Action Museum. Doug Farr's work in high-performance buildings and walkable urbanism solidifies his position as a driving force in the future of sustainable design and urban innovation.

Ernie Wong

Ernie Wong, Founder and Principal of site design group, ltd., has been a leader in landscape architecture for over 33 years. Under his leadership, site design group, ltd. has become known for their creation of creative urban spaces, including Riverwalk East, Pioneer Court, Mary Bartelme Park and Henry Palmisano Park (Stearns Quarry). Wong, a Fellow of the ASLA and Chairman of the Chicago Landmarks Commission, seamlessly blends design excellence with a unique dedication to civic engagement. Through his innovative leadership at site design group, ltd. and numerous not-for-profit organizations, Wong continues to innovate, further shaping the landscape architecture profession while receiving recognition through awards such as the Chicago Tribune's “2010 Chicagoan of the Year”, the 2021 LAI Burnham Award, the 2021 Nat’l ASLA Community Service Award, and the 2022 March of Dimes Professional Services Award.

Maria Pinto

Maria Pinto, a trailblazing fashion futurist, is dedicated to redefining and democratizing fashion through her timeless, ready-to-wear collection. With a focus on empowering women to exude confidence and style from day to night, Pinto’s innovative "deconstructed couture" method combines luxury with comfort and functionality. With notable achievements such as dressing Michelle Obama in 2007, being awarded both an honorary doctorate and the Legends of Fashion award from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, as well as launching M2057 by Maria Pinto, Pinto continues to shape the fashion landscape. Her craftsmanship continues to explore new boundaries every year while upholding her vision of helping women build smart, effortless style systems that allow their individuality to shine.

Paola Aguirre Serrano

Paola Aguirre Serrano, a native of the US-Mexico border region, urban designer and partner at Borderless Studio in Chicago and San Antonio, leads innovative and collaborative projects promoting spatial justice and equitable design. Recognized for her contributions, she received the Emerging Voices Award (2022) from The Architecture League of New York, the Perez Prize in Public Art and Civic Design by Americans for the Arts (2022), and the Creative Placemaking Award (2022) from the John and Catherine MacArthur Foundation. Paola, a civic design steward, previously served as Commissioner of Chicago Landmarks and currently advises the Smithsonian's National Museum of the American Latino. She holds a Master of Architecture in Urban Design from Harvard Graduate School of Design.

Sally Augustin

Dr. Sally Augustin, a leading design neuroscientist, develops evidence-based strategies for fostering environments that support human flourishing. Dr. Sally has a diverse background in psychology, management, and economics. She blends rigorous study with real-world experience to empower organizations and individuals all around the world. She uses neuroscience as Principal of Design With Science to align in-use goals and achieve measurable outcomes. Sally's position as a thought leader at the intersection of science and design has been cemented by the widespread publishing and media coverage of her impactful work.

Organizing team


Chicago, IL, United States