Why I love TED


If you have never seen a TED talk, then stop right now and get thee to TED.com. Watch any talk that pops up on the home page or do a quick search for your favorite past time and watch a talk about it. I guarantee you will be impressed and might even find a few ideas worth spreading.

TED truly brings innovation and great ideas to the forefront. But even better, it makes thinking and wondering and dreaming and aspiring cool.

TEDx_logo_RGB_2-line_tagline_CS21-300x90That’s why when I was asked to join the planning committee for the first ever TEDx Dayton, I literally jumped at the chance. The idea that we could host a TED-sponsored event here was not new to me. We had been talking about it around the city for years. But this time, it was really happening, and I was pumped!

Last Friday’s event was amazing. When I was asked by a friend of mine to tell her about my favorite talk, I started with one and ended with all of them. I guess you could say I was infused and inspired! I took her through the whole day. She can’t wait for next year and neither can I!

If you asked me to narrow it down, I can probably get to three. So, here are three of my favorite talks from TEDx Dayton.

1. Nathan Klingbeil – While I will probably never put to use the information Nathan shared about the Wright State University engineering program, listening to him talk about how the program is more focused on meeting the needs of the students vs. the needs of the curriculum developers was inspiring. Higher education isn’t always getting the job done any more. We need to be open to finding innovative ways to turn out more and better qualified graduates. Well done, WSU!

2. Rodney Veal – Maybe it’s because I’m a dance mom or maybe it’s all the writing and reviewing I’ve been doing for the Victoria, either way I loved Rodney’s presentation. His teaching and choreography of dancers around our area from Stivers to DCDC has inspired generations of performers and ticket holders. And the dance he developed for TEDx was certainly no different. Hurray to the amazing arts groups in Dayton and all that they do to infuse beauty and wonder in our city!

3. Deondra Parks – This woman’s story was incredible. Her personal journey and unwillingness to think of herself as a victim was beyond inspiring. Her ability to forgive and to find a reason to continue to pursue her dreams makes me want to try harder. We all have barriers to overcome. And if she can get over hers, I know I can get through anything put before me.

But I will feel bad if I also don’t mention Justin Howard of The Black Box Improv Theatre (I laughed so hard!), April Kline who led the entire theatre in song, and Sharon Rab for keeping books alive. There were so many more. I encourage you to check out the videos of the presentations that will come online at TedxDayton.com in the next few months.

I was truly amazed and impressed with the amount of effort that went into making this first ever TEDx Dayton a fantastic event. I hope that I will get to help again next year and look forward to seeing what other great speakers we can drum up right here in Dayton!

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