Organizers of TEDxIndianapolis 2013 are set to unveil the full speaker lineup Thursday. The first six presenters for the October event have already been announced.

August 6, 2013

News Release

Indianapolis, Ind. — Too often, conferences and big events focus one industry and attract people from the same profession, with the same interests and tastes. TEDxIndianapolis, at Hilbert Circle Theatre, will feature more than 20 speakers who plan to do the exact opposite.

“It is important to stretch your comfort zone and seek inspiration from unlikely sources,” said Jim Walker, executive director of Big Car and the TEDxIndianapolis license holder. “TEDxIndianapolis 2013 will be an opportunity to try on new perspectives, play with the possibilities and connect with people you may not otherwise meet.”

The first six speakers announced today live up to the Mix It Up theme of the event, combining views on literacy, hip-hop, healthcare, art and design, refugees, whimsy and technology in their Big Idea presentations. On October 22, they will come to Monument Circle from across the globe and across the street to provide both local and international perspectives on innovation across disciplines.

Speakers announced today include:

• John C. Havens, New York, NY; founder of H(app)athon Project and contributor to Mashable

Big Idea: Shift the Impact of Modern Technology

There are four technologies transforming our culture and business faster than we can catch up. We have two choices in the wake of this information explosion; struggle and become lost trying to identify every piece of data and tech platform coming our way, or, pause and reflect. It is time to regain control.

• Steven M. Johnson, Carmichael, Calif.; inventor, cartoonist, author

Big Idea: Mental Mixers for Imagining Future Product and Scenarios

Inventor/cartoonist Steven M. Johnson, born in 1938, has created a “line” of alternative products and systems, including cars with closets and chaise lounge lawn mowers. His talk centers on his creative technique of “thought-spinning”, a process of speeding up normal perception of everyday visible things. This mental mixer has resulted in a lifetime of unplanned forays into imagining the future.

• Florian Rivi?ire, Paris, France; urban hacker

Big Idea: Open Your World

Inspired by hacker and do-it-yourself culture, Florian reinvents and diverts public space to allow citizens to reclaim their urban environment. He says it is time to reclaim our senses and our imagination to create a world beyond definitions and predefined paths conditioned by our education. Shaping our world, our surroundings is a means to repossess our autonomy and freedom to create our own lives.

• Tasha Jones, Indianapolis, Ind., and Atlanta, Ga.; poet, hip-hop artist and educator

Big Idea: Poetically Remixing Classic Literature

When the DJ mixes two genres of music, an altogether new sound is created. How does one recognize the old while creating the new? Because life redirected my path, the classroom became a mixing board. And like a DJ, learning the modality of today's student totally transformed the classroom(s). Students who were resistant to reading and/or totally unattached to classic literature transitioned into students that read classic novels and aspired not only graduation but secondary education.

• Chad Priest, Indianapolis, Ind.; Air Force veteran and CEO of the MESH Coalition

Big Idea: Transdisciplinary Design, Creative Health

Chad has served as a military nurse, a healthcare lawyer, a university faculty member and most recently as the CEO of a non-profit crisis management organization. Through these experiences he has learned that creating health requires mixing up professions and interactions. This kind of transdisciplinary thinking often results in significant breakthroughs.

• Kristin Wright, Indianapolis, Ind.; journalist and director of development, Exodus Refugee Immigration

Big Idea: The Power of Welcome

When people of different cultures are welcomed and encouraged to contribute ideas, perspective and artistic vision, the result is an infusion of innovation. As a city, our greatest asset – and the need for our most tremendous investment – are the people our city welcomes. How can we welcome refugees, courageous people from diverse backgrounds, in a way that supports and celebrates cultural contribution?

TEDxIndianapolis will take place on Tuesday, October 22, 2013, at the Hilbert Circle Theatre. Tickets go on sale Thursday, August 15, at 5:30 p.m.

Discounted pre-sale tickets to TEDxIndianapolis are available only at Mix for Tix on Thursday, August 15, 5:30 – 8 p.m., at Well Done Marketing located at 1043 Virginia Ave. in Fountain Square. The Mix for Tix event, sponsored by Lumina Foundation, is free and open to the public but limited to the first 300. RSVP through Eventbrite here.

The complete speaker line-up will be announced at Mix for Tix. Local speakers will attend the event and will be available to offer a sneak peak at the Big Ideas they’ll share at TEDxIndianapolis.

TEDxIndianapolis 2013 producing partners are Big Car, Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, International School of Indiana, and Indiana Humanities. The event is sponsored by Wayne Zink, title sponsor; Lumina Foundation, mixer sponsor, and visionary sponsors The Heritage Group, CICF, Indy Chamber, NUVO Newsweekly, Efroymson Family Fund, a CICF Fund, and Well Done Marketing. Additional support is provided by the Indiana Historical Society, Gracie Communications, Green BEAN Delivery, Apparatus, The Strategy Forums, Rainmaker Sparks, Sycamore School, Bohlsen Group, Netlogx, Centric, KA+A, Midwest Language Services, SmallBox, and The Learning Architect Group.


Speaker line-up and presentation titles subject to change.

About TEDx

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 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).

About TED

TED is a nonprofit organization devoted to Ideas Worth Spreading. Started as a four-day conference in California 26 years ago, TED has grown to support those world-changing ideas with multiple initiatives. At TED, the world’s leading thinkers and doers are asked to give the talk of their lives in 18 minutes. Talks are then made available, free, at

Source: TEDx

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