TEDxDayton 2017 Speakers and Performers
After an open call for auditions earlier in the year, the speakers committee chose 21 individuals to present on this year’s theme—CURRENT. “’Current’ evokes energy, movement, and the pursuit of knowledge, and it also holds great significance for the history and landscape of our community,” said TEDxDayton Co-chair Diane Farrell. “Every year, we look for a theme that carries layers of meaning. We want the audience to come into the experience with their own ideas and their wheels already turning, and then we want them to encounter something unexpected. This year’s speakers are ready to deliver.”
Director of the American negotiation Institute, Kwame teaches us about an alternative way to resolve conflict. Kwame Christian is a business lawyer and the director of the American Negotiation Institute. In this role, he serves as a negotiation consultant for attorneys and for companies closing large business deals. He also conducts live training sessions for organizations. Kwame hosts the podcast “Negotiate Anything,” where he interviews successful professionals and shares powerful persuasion techniques.
Jonathan Luo is a 12-year-old seventh-grader at Mason Middle School. He began his musical studies at the age of 6 at Leung Studios and still studies with Dr. Benita Leung. Jonathan Luo is a 12-year-old seventh-grader at Mason Middle School. He began his musical studies at the age of 6 at Leung Studios and still studies with Dr. Benita Leung. Despite his young age, Jonathan has already been recognized with many top prizes. His first-place accolades include the Carmel Klavier International Piano Competition, The Nathaniel Patch Elementary Division and overall Grand Prize Winner, OMTA Graves Piano Competition (in both solo and duet), 88-Tri-State Concerto Competition, Dayton Public Radio Young Talent Search (in which he was the youngest winner), OMTA Buckeye State Winner, and The International Young Artist Piano Competition in Washington, D.C. Jonathan was also one of two featured young artists at the 2017 WDPR Catch a Rising Star Gala in Dayton. Aside from music, Jonathan likes reading, jumping rope and swimming, and his favorite subject in school is math.
Two people from wildly different backgrounds challenge each other–and you–to examine biases, to share personal traumas and triumphs, and to take responsibility. Dr. Julie Williams is a professor in the School of Professional Psychology at Wright State University. As a professor of clinical psychology and member of the disability community, she teaches and encourages her doctoral psychology students and colleagues to locate themselves at the source of suffering in society. Julie is known for saying two things to the difficult dialogues around privilege, power and oppression: “speak your truths” and “lean in.” She has received several local and national awards for her work in these areas, particularly the advancement of disability issues. Julie’s mission is to promote inclusion and solidarity. Dr. Steven Kniffley is an assistant professor at Wright State University in the School of Professional Psychology. He is also a board-certified licensed child psychologist in the State of Ohio. Steven’s area of expertise is research and clinical work with Black males. Specifically, his work focuses on understanding and developing culturally appropriate interventions for Black male psychopathology as well as barriers to academic success for this population. Steven has written four books on Black male mental health, Black males and the criminal justice system, and academic achievement. This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at
The Conductor of the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra talks about the importance of silence – in music, as well as in our lives. Neal Gittleman has been a professional conductor for 35 years. This is his 23rd season as conductor of the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra. His passion is music and bringing that music to life through history as well as sound. For decades, he has been talking to his concert audiences to give greater understanding of the music he loves. Speaking in front of an audience at TEDxDayton, however, is a first for Neal! Hopefully, the music will carry him along.
The Dayton Gay Men’s Chorus (DGMC) is proud to have its premier TEDxDayton performance. DGMC, now in its 15th season, sings a broad range of musical styles from serious to sublime and from heavy to hysterical. The Dayton Gay Men’s Chorus (DGMC) is proud to have its premier TEDxDayton performance. DGMC, now in its 15th season, sings a broad range of musical styles from serious to sublime and from heavy to hysterical. The mission of DGMC is to sing to inspire, encourage and sustain excellence in the choral arts and to achieve a gay-affirming presence in the greater Miami Valley. The DGMC is proud to take its audience back to school with “School Daze,” a concert series and special LGBTQ youth outreach program. For more information on DGMC outreach and concerts, please visit www.daytongaymenschorus.org
An OB/GYN for over 18 years, “Dr. Roz” explains that menopause is more than night-sweats and hot flashes. Dr. Roz Jackson promotes wellness for women at Total Health & Wellness OBGYN LLC. She has practiced women’s healthcare for more than 18 years. She is a board-certified obstetrician and gynecologist. She completed her medical training at Wright State School of Medicine, her residency at Miami Valley Hospital and Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, and her undergraduate courses at Tennessee State University. She is the recipient of numerous awards, including the National Conference for Community and Justice of Greater Dayton Humanitarian Award for 2014. Dr. Roz was named one of Dayton’s Top 25 Women to Watch in 2015.
David Baugham is a finger-style acoustic slap-guitarist and native of Dayton. He attends Wright State University and is a senior in the supply chain management program. He also serves as the student body president of WSU. David Baugham is a finger-style acoustic slap-guitarist and native of Dayton. He attends Wright State University and is a senior in the supply chain management program. He also serves as the student body president of WSU. David’s musical accomplishments include winning first place in the region-wide talent competition “So You Think You Can Play the Schuster,” which was held in 2013 at the Benjamin and Marian Schuster Performing Arts Center. David also opened for the internationally acclaimed fingerstyle artist Stefano Barone at the International Center for Creativity. After finishing his bachelor’s degree, David plans to pursue a graduate degree in public health and work in international emergency relief.
It’s been said that seniors go through a “second childhood”, but instead, what if they go through a “second adolescence”? Kathy Druffner is the owner of Druffner Professional Organizing. She is a 1989 graduate of the University of Dayton with a bachelor of science degree in criminal justice and a minor in psychology. Kathy has always been fascinated by human behavior and how participants can experience the same event and have vastly different recollections and interpretations. She has found that the simple act of listening can foster mutual respect, dispel misconceptions, and bridge gaps of disagreement. She enjoys meeting new people and listening to their personal stories and life experiences.
The Assistant Director of Student Conduct and Community Standards at Central State University advocates for forgiveness, if only for yourself. Ken Goodrum was raised in Cleveland, and is the assistant director of student conduct and community standards at Central State University in Wilberforce. He holds a bachelor of arts degree in history from Central State and spent half of his life as an advocate for students, especially students who will be the first to go to college in their families – or “first generation” college students. Ken’s devotion to students has allowed him to serve in different capacities, such as corrections officer, football coach, residence hall coordinator, and with programs, such as Upward Bound and Educational Talent Search. Ken is married and has four sons.
Trey Stone is very proud to add TEDxDayton to his long list of accomplishments in the music and entertainment world. For 15 years, Trey served as music director at The Second City, the famed comedy institution in Chicago. There, he collaborated with many of the nation’s top names in comedy, theater, television and film. He currently leads his own group, Trey Stone and the Ringers, and is a founding member of the tango ensemble Tiempo Perdido. Trey also tours nationally and internationally with Jim Belushi and the Board of Comedy and is music director at Dayton’s Black Box Improv Theater. Trey Stone is very proud to add TEDxDayton to his long list of accomplishments in the music and entertainment world. For 15 years, Trey served as music director at The Second City, the famed comedy institution in Chicago. There, he collaborated with many of the nation’s top names in comedy, theater, television and film. He currently leads his own group, Trey Stone and the Ringers, and is a founding member of the tango ensemble Tiempo Perdido. Trey also tours nationally and internationally with Jim Belushi and the Board of Comedy and is music director at Dayton’s Black Box Improv Theater.
As a college professor, Corey noticed a change in her newest college students–Generation Z. Her research has led her to uncover how this generation challenges the norms of our current society, and what promises that might hold for the future. Corey Seemiller is an educator, researcher and author on issues related to leadership and civic engagement. Corey received her Ph.D. in higher education and serves as a faculty member in the Department of Leadership Studies in Education and Organizations at Wright State University. She has worked in higher education for more than 20 years, fueling her passion for developing the leadership capacity of college students. Corey is the author of The Student Leadership Competencies Guidebook, which helps educators develop intentional leadership curricula, and Generation Z Goes to College, which prepares educators to best serve and develop Generation Z students.
Terry explains how his own fond memories of rain led him to create one of his most recognizable sculptures and he gives us permission to use our own memories to experience art on our own terms. Terry Welker is a sculptor/architect and distinguished Fellow of the American Institute of Architects. He creates lightweight, suspended and kinetic sculptures that come from his passion for architecture, poetic space and meaningful places. Influenced largely by modern sculptors like Calder and Bertoia, Terry works to extend visual languages by animating form, space and surface with motion. His goal is to find shared identification of memorable forms, associations, multiple meanings, and the simple enjoyment of being lost in the moment. Terry’s sculptures are in multiple public and private collections in the United States, Canada and Mexico.
Technology is changing at a rapid pace, but can it evolve with a characteristic humans crave: trust? Dick Hattershire is a part-time consultant to Leidos, a large science and technology company. He is retired Air Force with bachelor’s and master’s degrees in psychology (clinical orientation) with experience in research and development, including human factors experimentation, and he is co-author on two Air Force technical reports. He is deeply engaged in Dayton’s arts community and is the past board chair for Discover Classical, WDPR/WDPG, Dayton’s 24-hour classical radio station. He is also a founding father of, past board president for, and a singer in the Bach Society of Dayton – the area’s leading performer of classical choral music.
Do you realize how many written words you process each day? Bridget shows us how often we take literacy for granted and how the power to read can change a life. As a graduate of the University of Dayton in 2011 and 2016, Bridget Shingleton has had the joy of teaching students of many ages, ability levels, and native languages. She taught creative writing at Stivers School for the Arts for two years before teaching English as a Second Language at an after-school academy in South Korea for one year. Following that, Bridget taught her way through a master’s degree in English at UD, while coaching student writing in The Write Place. Today, she manages marketing and communications for the Brunner Literacy Center. Bridget believes in literacy’s power to improve lives.
Adrian has the unique perspective of growing up in the foster care system and later providing kinship care to his niece and nephew. He shares his experiences with both systems and explains why he believes kinship care is the better option. Adrian McLemore works for the Annie E. Casey Foundation in Baltimore, Maryland. Before moving to Baltimore in 2016, he spent his career working in the public and non-profit sectors in Dayton. Adrian’s true passion is serving children and families. Having emancipated from foster care at the age of 18, Adrian has dedicated his life to serving others. He is the co-founder of numerous organizations, initiatives and programs dedicated to improving the lives of children and families across Ohio and throughout the country. Adrian attended Wright State University and holds a degree in political science.
What happens when you call 911 in a developing nation? Steve proposes we look back on our own history to ensure everyone around the world has access to dependable emergency services. Steve Schwartz is chief executive officer of Lion Group Inc., a 118-year-old global family business that is based in Dayton and is a leader in its three business sectors: first-responder protective equipment, fire-training equipment, and equipment lifecycle management. Steve earned progressively greater responsibilities as a fourth-generation family owner since he started his career in 1989. During his tenure, he has led the company’s development of many innovations and has led it into international markets, joint ventures, acquisitions and divestitures. Steve is passionate about the role of the first responder as a key pillar of civil society and the role his company plays in keeping them safe.
Crystal Michelle Perkins finds inspiration in the void left within herself from never performing the first dance she ever choreographed. That feeling of non-completion has become her motivation and starting point to continue creating more dances, including this beautifully choreographed performance. Crystal Michelle Perkins is a choreographer from Dayton. She is an assistant professor in the Department of Dance at Ohio State University. She also serves as rehearsal director for the Dayton Contemporary Dance Company (DCDC). Crystal Michelle has traveled internationally for choreographic research and performance to Burkina Faso and Port of Spain, Trinidad. She has collaborated with Dayton’s Blackbird String Quartet, The University of Dayton’s Department of Music and, most recently, the Khalid Moss Jazz Trio for the creation of “Unrested and Unfaithful” – her second commission for DCDC’s permanent repertoire. Her current work, “The Beautiful Archive Project,” investigates body images of women of color through contemporary dance choreography. Crystal is joined on stage by Jaelyn Blake, Alexandra Dyer, Alexandria Flewellen and Jasmin Hines.
The Director of the Packard Museum in Dayton, Daniel advocates for skilled trades to be something “strived for”, rather than “settled for”. Dan Badger has a passion for building and restoring cars and airplanes and loves sharing that passion with others. He firmly believes that hands-on exposure to trade skills is an incredibly important component in a well-rounded education. In his role as director at America’s Packard Museum in Dayton, he works with local schools and youth organizations to give students hands-on experience repairing and restoring antique cars. Dan also consults for local manufacturers to assist in integrating 3D printing technologies into their development and prototyping workflows.
How many people talk with their aging parents about safe sex? LaFleur details the rise of HIV in older adults and explains how turning “the talk” back around on our parents may help save their lives. Dr. La Fleur F. Small is a professor of sociology at Wright State University. She is the director of the applied behavioral science master’s program and holds a joint appointment with the Boonshoft Medical School. La Fleur holds several appointments on editorial boards of social science and health journals, including the Journal of the Association of Nurses in AIDS Care. She has served as a grant reviewer for numerous agencies, including the Ford Foundation Pre-doctoral, Doctoral and Post-doctoral Fellowships. La Fleur enjoys teaching both undergraduate and graduate courses that focus on her areas of specialty, including medical sociology and epidemiology.
In a world filled with texts, tweets, and likes, Olive knows the power of something a little more personal: a handwritten card. Through her stories, she shares the tremendous impact you can have on someone’s life for just the price of a postage stamp. Olive Wagar, owner of Organized by Olive LLC, helps overwhelmed people discover the less cluttered side of life. She writes a weekly blog at www.organizedbyolive.com. Olive is a member of the National Association of Professional Organizers and is secretary for the Ohio chapter. She is a member of Miami County Toastmasters and Vandalia Toastmasters. She has served as charter president and currently serves as the District 40 Area 5 director. Olive volunteers her time in church ministries for women and children. She enjoys sending cards, playing classic games, listening to piano music and visiting libraries. She lives in Troy.
Signature Event Co-Chairs
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Karen Maner, Co-Chair
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Lisa Von De Linde
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Speakers & Performers
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Shaun Yu, Co-Chair
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TEDxDayton Leadership Committee
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