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TEDxYDL 2018: MobilityEleven local speakers will take the stage at TEDxYDL, presenting some of our community’s next big ideas in ten compelling 8-minute talks. TEDxYDL is organized by the Ypsilanti District Library and will take place at Riverside Art Center on Thursday, September 27 at 7 pm. In addition to the talks, the event will feature musical performances and videos of selected TED talks.

TEDxYDL will present a diverse array disciplines, interests, and organizations across Washtenaw County. Though the talk topics will differ greatly, they will all address the theme, “mobility.” Each talk will explore various ways people move about in life.

See all event details at Tickets are free, and holders receive priority seating, but seating will be opened to the public ten minutes before the event begins. Anyone who doesn’t get seated in the main auditorium may watch the livestream in an overflow room on site, and all may attend the reception after the event and meet and mingle with our speakers.

Thursday, September 27, 7-9pm
Riverside Arts Center
76 N. Huron

Speakers for the third annual TEDxYDL include:

Yodit Mesfin Johnson, Emcee

Chief Operating Officer, Nonprofit Enterprise at Work (NEW)

Yodit has been addressing issues of diversity and social justice for nearly two decades first as an activist and more recently as a trainer, consultant, facilitator, and speaker.

Zahra Bahrani Fard

Transformation Systems Analyst at the Center of Automotive Research

Zahra will give an overview of the new technologies that can change the way people mobilize in their communities.

Jamie Cornelius

Assistant Professor in the Biology Department at Eastern Michigan University and Bird Watching Expert

Jamie will dive into the life of migratory birds, and how they navigate for resources in order to survive.

Nathalie Estiverne

Competitive Public Speaker and Theatre Major at Eastern Michigan University

Nathalie will use slam poetry to compare the mistreatment of the environment to the subjugation of black women in society.

Alison Foreman

Executive Director of Ypsilanti Meals on Wheels

Alison will discuss CAPABLE, a program that helps senior citizens live independent lives in their homes and communities.

Kelsey Kleimola

Advocate for the Disabled, and Ms. Wheelchair Michigan 2014

Kelsey will discuss living with cerebral palsy how she, and others who are disabled, can mobilize in their communities and live happy, productive lives.

Dan LaBruna

Software Engineer and Engineering Manager at M City

Dan will touch on the future of mobilization for the disabled and the elderly, including artificial intelligence and self-driving vehicles.

Zereth Bustamente Luevano & Pamela Mercado Garcia

President and Vice President of the Latinx Student Association at Eastern Michigan University

In a tandem talk, Zereth and Pam will share their experiences of coming to America while receiving an education, along with the hardships that other Latinx people face as immigrant children.

Victoria Shields

Doctoral Student studying Urban Education at EMU

Victoria will discuss how American music has mobilized geographically from West Africa, to America, and to England, along with the social movements behind it, which comes from the African American Cultural Humanities (AC) curriculum.

Gina Thompson

Professional dancer and Dance Director of the Hocketts Synchronized Skating Team

Gina will show the impact of dance and movement for all walks of life in everyday society, and will perform as part of her talk.

Jacqueline Williams

Co-Founder and Development Director of the Michigan Prison Doula Initiative

Jacqueline will discuss the physical and psychological challenges pregnant women face while incarcerated, and what can be done to help them.

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Gillian Ream Gainsley
Communications Coordinator
Ypsilanti District Library
(734) 879-1303

About the Ypsilanti District Library

As a community resource, the Ypsilanti District Library’s mission is to enrich life, stimulate intellectual curiosity, foster literacy, and encourage an informed citizenry.


About TEDx, x = independently organized event

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, TED Talks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection. 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.)

About TED

TED is a nonprofit organization devoted to Ideas Worth Spreading, usually in the form of short, powerful talks (18 minutes or fewer) delivered by today’s leading thinkers and doers. Many of these talks are given at TED’s annual conference in Vancouver, British Columbia, and made available, free, on TED speakers have included Bill Gates, Jane Goodall, Elizabeth Gilbert, Sir Richard Branson, Nandan Nilekani, Philippe Starck, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Sal Khan and Daniel Kahneman.

TED’s open and free initiatives for spreading ideas include, where new TED Talk videos are posted daily; the Open Translation Project, which provides subtitles and interactive transcripts as well as translations from thousands of volunteers worldwide; the educational initiative TED-Ed; the annual million-dollar TED Prize, which funds exceptional individuals with a “wish,” or idea, to create change in the world; TEDx, which provides licenses to thousands of individuals and groups who host local, self-organized TED-style events around the world; and the TED Fellows program, which selects innovators from around the globe to amplify the impact of their remarkable projects and activities.

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