TEDx organizers plan for April 6 conference

TEDx is returning to the College of William and Mary April 6 for an afternoon’s worth of Forward” themed talks.

The second annual event will take place in Colonial Williamsburg’s Kimball Theatre at 1 p.m. Eight different speakers will attend, including: Peter Atwater ’83, founder of Financial Insyghts; Karen Catlin, former vice president of Adobe Systems and former CEO of Athentica; Paul Dommel ’86, global Health and Human Services sales leader for the IBM Government Industry; John Glick ’74, co-creator of the Gesundheit Institute; Tara Grove, an associate professor of law at William and Mary; Dan Murray, founder of WebFilings/WDesk; John Elder Robison, nationally renown author and speaker on neurodiversity and scholar-in-residence at the College; and Christopher Sprigman, professor of law at New York University.

TEDx events are independently organized, yet linked to the flagship TED foundation, whose mission is to “make great ideas accessible and spark conversation.” This year’s talks will be geared towards varying views on global progress.

The lectures discuss “what is happening in the world today, what forces are changing our future, and how social media has particularly changed the way we relate to one another,” Alyssa Zhu ’14, publicity chair of the College’s TEDx conference, said.

The effects of last year’s inaugural event can be seen through the University of South Carolina’s Page Prize winning course in sustainability that Mason School of Business professor Michael Luchs created and spoke about at the College’s March 2013 TEDx gathering. His talk serves as a precursor to topics that will be discussed next month.

TEDx volunteers have swathed the campus with flyers; newly designed ones will begin to surface as April 6 approaches. The campaign also has a growing presence on the Internet, including a Facebook event page and an upcoming Instagram contest featuring unrevealed incentives for participants.

“We want there to be some mystery around TEDx to stir excitement, because each event is completely different,” Rebecca Silverstein ’14, TEDxCollegeofWilliamandMary’s curator, said in an email.

The TED Confernce provides guidelines for how TEDx conferences are to be organized, but all TEDx conferences are independent, self-organized and run. Tickets to TEDx will be sold exclusively in the Sadler Center beginning Wednesday, March 19, from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. and 5-8 p.m. They are $10 for students, $15 for faculty and staff, and $35 for the general public.


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