Speakers & Performers

We are so excited to present the speaker lineup for TEDxPhoenix 2015: Press Play. We will continue to add to this list leading up to the event.

  • Bristol Baughan

    Bristol Baughan

    Filmmaker, Author, and Private Coach

    Bristol Baughan is an Emmy-winning and Oscar-Nominated filmmaker, author, and private coach. She is a TED Fellow and served as a delegate for the State Department Documentary Showcase in China.

    Bristol is currently writing a book with her mother about freedom from inter-generational patterning called "Permission", a coffee table memoir called "Judge-a-holic", and facilitating vulnerability workshops at TED and like-minded conferences and retreats.

    She Executive Produced THE OTHER SHORE: The Diana Nyad Story at SXSW in 2013. As Co-Founder of Reason Pictures/GOOD.is, she built a slate of Oscar nominated and Emmy winning documentaries including BY THE PEOPLE: THE ELECTION OF BARACK OBAMA (HBO), WHICH WAY HOME (HBO), SON OF RAMBOW (Paramount) and RACING DREAMS (POV). Dreamworks has optioned the remake rights to RACING DREAMS. Bristol spearheaded GOOD’s online video department in 2006 directing their first web videos and bringing millions of eyeballs to GOOD.

    Bristol holds a B.A. in International Studies from the American University School of International Service and an M.A. in Spiritual Psychology from the University of Santa Monica

    Hey Soulmate / @bristolbaughan

    • Summer Bellessa

      Summer Bellessa

      Actor, Eliza Magazine founder and Girl With Glasses co-founder

      At four years old, Summer Bellessa started her modeling career and by 17 had the opportunity to travel the world living in fashion capitals that include: Paris, Hamburg, New York, Miami, London, and Tokyo. Those experiences as a model, opened her eyes to the world outside her hometown of Chicago Heights, Illinois. Her metamorphosis from model into creator began as she brought talented people together to create content for ELIZA Magazine, Disney, Method, Sony, General Mills, and more. Today, she is one half of the online variety show The Girls With Glasses, and writes fashion content for Babble.com, along with being a wife and mother of two tenacious toddlers.

      The Girls With Glasses / @summerbellessa

    • Rachel Bloom

      Rachael Bloom

      Research Fellow

      Rachael Bloom is a second year graduate student at Duke University, in the University Program for Genetics and Genomics. Before that, she spent four years as a technician studying psychiatric genetics at UNC-CH, where she also acquired her undergrad degree in Biology, Creative Writing, and Chinese, and a daughter.

      Now Rachael is an NSF graduate research fellow. She studies the ecological interactions between bacteria in the human gut, and how they contribute to human health and disease. She's doing this all the while wrangling an amazing seven year old.

    • Esther K. Chae

      Esther K. Chae

      Actress and Playwright

      Esther K. Chae is an award-winning actress, playwright, academic and TED fellow. Her work has been performed in the US, Korea, Scotland, Ireland, Australia, Italy, Nigeria and Russia. Esther has acted in television shows such as NCIS, Law and Order: Criminal Intent, The West Wing, 24, The Shield; and on theatre stages such as Yale Repertory Theater, La Mama, P.S. 122 and Harvard/A.R.T. As a writer, Esther created and performed So the Arrow Flies, her internationally acclaimed solo performance which is archived in the Library of Congress and published by NoPassport Press. Her other plays include Ae-ri in Otherland, featuring Korean percussion music ‘samul-nori’ and Ddan dda ddan!!!, an absurd short play about a superwoman socket puppet and her struggles.

      Chae graduated from the Yale School of Drama (MFA Acting), the University of Michigan (MA in Theater Studies), and Korea University. She served as the Martin Luther King, Jr./Cesar Chavez/Rosa Parks Visiting Professorship (University of Michigan), keynote speaker for the Arts Council of Korea and as a visiting artist at the Institute on the Arts and Civic Dialogue, founded by Anna Deavere Smith, at Harvard University.

      She was born in Eugene, Oregon, grew up in Seoul, Korea and has climbed Machu Picchu, the Indian Himalayas and Mt. Kilimanjaro. She lives with her husband in Santa Monica, CA.

      Esther K Chae / @Chaeful

    • Brandon Gore

      Brandon Gore

      Designer

      Brandon Gore, founder of Gore Design Co., Hard Goods, and The Conservatory of Craft, is an internationally recognized artisan who has revolutionized the use of concrete in furniture. His work has been featured in Dwell, Vogue, Wired and many other design publications and won “Best Furniture Design” at Dwell on Design 2012.

      Brandon is currently serving as a judge in theFramework furniture building competition on Spike. He also teaches his methods in classes at his Tempe, Arizona studio, and throughout the country.

      Gore Design Co / @goredesignco

    • Karen Kosiba

      Karen Kosiba

      Atmospheric Scientist

      Karen Kosiba is an atmospheric scientist at the Center for Severe Weather Research in Boulder, CO. She has always been fascinated by the world around her. As a child she collected caterpillars, built balsa bridges (the prize winning bridge may still be on display at Homer Jr. High School), and stayed up late watching lightning storms. When she began college, she considered careers in architecture, patent law, and veterinary medicine, but ultimately decided that severe weather (somehow) combined all of her interests.

      Her research focuses on the dynamics of convective storms, characterizing the low-level wind structure in tornadoes, and the boundary layer wind structure in hurricanes. Additionally, she is passionate about science education and, recently, has participated in outreach activities at museums, festivals, and in schools across the country.

      A native of the Chicago suburbs, she now resides in Colorado with her husband, cat, and dog. In her free time, she is an avid TV watcher, hiker, traveler, yogi, reader, coffee drinker, and sleeper.

      @karen_kosiba

    • Danny Lobell

      Danny Lobell

      Comedian

      Danny Lobell started out in New York City 12 years ago doing open mics and auditioning at the clubs. He became a headliner and built up a following on his podcast, Comical Radio, which was the first ever podcast to feature interviews with comedians. On it, he interviewed comedians like George Carlin, Chris Rock, and Billy Connolly, along with entertainers such as Larry King and Dick Cavett.

      During this time, he captivated audiences in England, Scotland, Ireland, Wales, Spain, South Africa, France, and Belgium with his surrealist observations and vivid storytelling.

      After relocating from NYC to Los Angeles, Danny started "Modern Day Philosophers," a podcast that partners a modern or ancient philosopher with a comedian. Maria Bamford, Bill Burr, Lewis Black, Carl Reiner, Shelley Berman, Reggie Watts, Aisha Tyler, Andy Kindler, and Marc Maron have appeared on the show. Photo courtesy of 92YTribeca

      Danny Lobell / @dannylobell

    • Macy McKenny

      Macy McKenny

      Sculptor

      It was a circuitous journey that lead to the recognition that Macy McKenny now receives for her unique, tiny clay sculptures. Working as a graphic designer for a tech company, Macy found outlet in pursuing a variety of creative hobbies-- jewelry making, furniture reupholstering, painting, and sketching – just to name a few. She never viewed herself as a serious sculptor but through the beautiful confluence of creative spirit, timing, and internet-borne reach, Macy’s work has found a surprisingly large audience.

      Her experience has helped Macy develop a powerful and useful message for both new and established artists and she looks forward to sharing her insights about leveraging social media, pursuing dreams, and ultimately, how to rid yourself of the emotional chains and self-imposed obstacles that limit growth. Photo byShanyn Nicole Photography

      Simon Says Macy / @simonsaysmacy

    • Kristina Moore

      Kristina Moore (Pageant)

      Musician

      Pageant (formerly Where Are All the Buffalo?) is Kristina Moore with a rotating cast of friends. She is currently recording her first full-length album, which is due to be released late spring 2015.

      Pageant on Soundcloud

    • Camille Seaman

      Camille Seaman

      Photographer and Explorer

      Camille Seaman strongly believes in capturing photographs that articulate that humans are not separate from nature. She is a photographer and explorer for Camille Seaman Photography. Her photographs have been featured in prestigious publications, including National Geographic and TIME magazine. Seaman has a bachelor’s degree in the fine arts photography from the State University of New York at Purchase. She has won several photography awards, including a National Geographic Award and the Critical Mass Top Monograph Award. In 2008, Seaman was honored with a solo exhibit, “The Last Iceberg,” at the National Academy of Sciences. Camille Seaman advocates the importance of recognizing the relationship between humans and their natural surroundings. Camille is a TED Senior Fellow and a Stanford Knight Fellow.

      Camille Seaman / @camilleseaman

    • Eric Stackpole

      Eric Stackpole

      Co-founder OpenROV

      Eric Stackpole is co-founder of OpenROV, Inc., and creator of the OpenROV submarine, an open source, low cost "Remotely Operated Vehicle" (or ROV) underwater robot that can be piloted from the surface and stream live video to its operator. The intention of OpenROV is to democratize underwater exploration by making tools capable of exploring the deep available to anyone. After a very successful initial release of OpenROV kits through the crowdfunding website Kickstarter, OpenROV has grown into a business that distributes kits for the OpenROV submarine to researchers, educators, technology enthusiasts, and explorers across the globe. Stackpole has worked on numerous other projects that utilize telerobotics as a means for exploration, including piloting ROV submarines under the Ross Sea in Antarctica and developing low-cost spacecraft used to carry out scientific missions in low earth orbit.

      OpenROV / @eerrp

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