Walnut Street
x = independently organized TED event

This event occurred on
February 24, 2024
Columbia, Missouri
United States

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).

The Blue Note
17 N 9th street
Columbia, Missouri, 65201
United States
Event type:
Standard (What is this?)
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Speakers may not be confirmed. Check event website for more information.

Asia Long

Asia Long Starting out as an activist, Asia became a local inspiration to members of her community and beyond with her series Flowers to the people and For Colored Boys. Tonight she’s going to talk about her life and the use of art to escape poverty. She says her part of her mission in life is to help others on their journey in life by giving them the space to be open with themselves, She is a mother, wife and mentor but we know her as Visual Artist Asia Long. Please welcome Asia to our TED talk stage.

Barbara Buffaloe

Barbara Buffaloe is an American politician. She is serving her first term as the Mayor of Columbia, Missouri and chair of the Columbia City Council. She won the 2022 Columbia, Missouri mayoral election with 43 percent of the vote. Before becoming Mayor she served as the city sustainability manager for eleven years. She is the second female Mayor, and with her election women outnumber men on the city council for the first time in history

Brandi Spurling

Brandi Spurling and her husband, Chris, have called Columbia home for ten years. She's been intrigued by the different perspectives she's experienced in a broad list of industries she's found herself in. So, she let that inspire her Master's in Strategic Leadership studies, where she focused on generational differences in the workplace before graduating in 2017. Now, she's enjoying what a little curiosity, broad industry experience, and an ever-changing working world can do to help people work better together.

Chekaya Glaspie

Chekaya Glaspie, is a Clinical Operations Specialist With over 15 years of collective clinical trial, project management and medical communications experience Previously worked with some of the largest pharmaceutical and medical device companies in the U.S. Trained in GCP and ICH guidelines and requirements. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Cardiorespiratory Science from the University of South Alabama (Mobile, AL) and a Master’s in Business Administration from Webster University (St. Louis, MO). Her goal is to work with and introduce physicians and patients of color to the clinical research industry. Ultimately, she would like to create a research engagement initiative in the St. Louis region making it a major touch point for small to midsize pharmaceutical and biotech companies who are seeking diverse patient data and clinical sites.

Chrystal Graves

Chrystal L. is a dynamic industry leader, shaping every line of business she enters with innovation and heart. With years of experience as an educator, salon owner, and now a tech startup founder, she has established herself as a trailblazer in the field. Chrystal is the founder of Liquid Hair Institute, an empowering community that provides the essential training, tools and support needed to run a profitable, sustainable, and welcoming business and retire on your own terms. Chrystal's consistent dedication to entrepreneurship garnered her the 2021 Modern Salon Top 100 title and the 2019, 2023 Missouri Start-up Weekend winner. In addition to her impressive work in the hair industry, Chrystal L. is a dedicated mother of three and co-founder of The BOLD Academy, a non-profit organization focused on supporting, nurturing, and enhancing the leadership skills of young women. Her commitment to inclusion and passion for empowering others shines through in all aspects of her life, making her a true leader in her field and an inspiration to anyone looking to make their mark on the world.

David Mitchell

S. David Mitchell Is the Ruth L. Hulston Professor of Law and Director of the Michael A. Middleton Center for Race, Citizenship and Justice He earned a JD and a PhD in Sociology from the University of Pennsylvania. and a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and Political Science at Brown University. At the University of Missouri School of Law, he teaches Torts, Law & Society and Collateral Consequences of Sentencing. He is an interdisciplinary scholar whose research focuses on the collateral consequences that attach following a conviction, specifically the legal obstacles that prevent the formerly incarcerated from successfully reintegrating back into society. He has been recognized for his teaching and service as a recipient of the Minority Faculty and Staff Appreciation Award; the Spurgeon Smithson Award from the Missouri Bar Foundation; and the Diversity and Inclusion award from Missouri Lawyers Media; and most recently, he was awarded the William T. Kemper Fellowship for Teaching Excellence. He is a regular teaching visitor at Douglass High School and is a member of the Minority Mens Network. He is a member of Missouri Advisory Committee to the United States Commission on Civil Rights. He has also served as a law clerk to the Honorable Andre M. Davis in the District Court of Maryland and was a Scholar in Residence in the Department of Sociology at the University of Colorado at Boulder. His spouse also teaches at the university, and he has two children.

David Webber

David Webber joined the University of Missouri Political Science Department in 1986 with an academic specialty in American Public Policy. He worked for the U.S. Congress in 1993 and 1995. In 2009, Webber began volunteering at Columbia (Mo) homeless services and has written three plays about homelessness (and one about politics) performed in Columbia. He started writing opinion columns in the Columbia MISSOURIAN in 1994 and often writes about homelessness and related social issues. He has taught at two South Korea universities; he currently teaches in the University of Missouri’s Asian Affairs Center.

Don Carter

Don Carter has spent a lifetime in pursuit of service and protection, previously during a decade in law enforcement and now through working with emerging leaders in business. His relentless journey has led him from healing hearts to radical new starts for black executives and entrepreneurs breaking through to their next levels of growth and success. Don Carter is an author, speaker, business consultant and transformational executive coach who brings a vibe that generates life-shifting insights for his clients’ work and for themselves as human beings. Using principle-driven purpose, he helps high-performing individuals shift the focus from what seems wrong on the outside to everything that is right on the inside. And by embracing transition and change as a necessary experience, helps others grow into deeply authentic, fulfilled and successful business leaders.

Ebonee Shaw

Ebonee Shaw began her career in non-profit development and event management 20 years ago in New Orleans, LA. Her wealth of experience encompasses planning of detailed large scale events for thousands to meetings for a few. She received a B.S. in Finance from Xavier University of Louisiana, a Master’s in Business Administration, with a concentration in Marketing from the University of New Orleans, and a Doctorate in Business Administration with a specialization in Social Impact Management from Walden University.

Josh Runnels

Josh Runnels, creatively known as J. Artiz is an artist and education and one of the founder of the Soul Sessions here in Columbia.

JQ Sirls

JQ Sirls, Founder and CEO of O.R.B.I.T Inc., is a visionary in children's storytelling and educational technology, echoing Willy Wonka's spirit in the digital age. Holding a BFA in Creative Writing and an MBA in Innovation, he artfully blends whimsical creativity with business strategy. His children's books, set in Fantoria, a world he created at age 7, celebrate childlike imagination, make-believe, and wonder, fostering innovation and self-esteem. As an Imagination Architect, Sirls creates experiences that celebrate enchantment and wonder. Through Storytailor, thousands of families around the world, often overlooked by traditional publishing, have found themselves reflected in stories that finally whisper, "You belong.”

Mataka Askari

Mataka Askari is a Certified Peer Specialist, Batterers Intervention Prevention Specialist, Certified Facilitator for Habilitation Empowerment Accountability Therapy (H.E.A.T.),CBT Life Coach, Public Speaker and Group Facilitator. He is a former member of the State Advisory Council for the Missouri Department of Mental Health and is a Hub Team member with the Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes for Peer Specialist. He is currently employed by Connections to Success where he does reentry work and facilitate classes while also doing work with Columbia Public schools.

Syreta Toson

Syreta Toson has a mission to transform and inspire. As a motivational speaker and podcaster she proposes that triumph is always available to us during and after facing life's adversities. her Youtube series is based on mindset change and the ways in which simply changing one's thinking can empower others in ways they may have never thought. After spending more than 14 years in prison she was released in September 2022, and her subsequent success is a story of transformation that she wants to share with others who are facing adversity.

Wendy Moore

Wendy Moore is a founder, social entrepreneur, and technologist passionate about creating work environments so everyone can thrive. Her career has included opportunities to work around the world with top innovation leaders, companies, and entrepreneurial ecosystems. She is the Founder & CEO of Eleve Talent, former COO of Healium, and Advisor to multiple tech startups. A proud Mizzou Tiger, she loves supporting local entrepreneurs and is a founding board member of the CoMo Women's Investment Network for Entrepreneurs.

Organizing team