TED is coming to the Bronx on May 6, which will be the first boroughwide-themed TEDx event.
TED is a nonprofit organization that hosts talks and conferences dedicated to spreading ideas. TEDx provides opportunities for independent organizers to get licenses to host their own TED events around the world, showcasing a variety of speakers.
The TED talk was created in 1984 to highlight the intersection of design, technology and entertainment. Over the years, TED expanded with conferences that showcased, according to the organization’s website, “the most interesting people on earth” and their passions. Through podcast and video series, the organization has given a platform for leaders and thinkers to communicate ideas on a global scale.
Danielle Nicholson, one of the TEDxBronx event organizers, described TED talks as “a short powerful talk meant to spread a new idea.”
George Nunez, the executive producer of TEDxBronx, who is also one of seven speakers, said TED speeches break ideas down so a fifth grader could understand them.
“When I think of TED, I think of intellectual curiosity,” he said. “I think of going to a TED event or TED conference and being enlightened or informed on something.”
There have been niche TEDx events at Fordham University, Manhattan College, Riverdale Country School, Horace Mann, and in Grand Concourse and Wakefield, but this is the first TED event with a Bronx-wide theme. A license was obtained by Majora Carter for a TEDxBronx event in 2011, but the event never happened.
Now, Carter, a developer who founded the Boogie Down Grind cafe, is making the event come to life with co-organizer and fellow Bronx native Nicholson, an attorney.
The event will take place at Bronxlandia, the former Hunts Point Rail Station at 910 Hunts Point Ave., which Carter also owns with James Chase. They are donating the venue for the event, which can hold 150 attendees.
The inaugural TEDxBronx has an Ignited theme, which is meant to flip the script from the “Bronx is burning” era and give a positive connotation to the borough, according to organizers.
“We can show people that yes, although everyone from the Bronx feels like they’ve got a chip on their shoulder, we want to make sure that everyone is aware of the Bronx and where it’s heading, and this is what is going to spark that or ‘ignite that,'” Nunez said.
The seven speakers all grew up in the Bronx and have a diverse set of ideas to share, organizers said in an interview with the Bronx Times.
“A lot of times the news that comes out of the Bronx is not always the most positive, but we know that there are amazing people doing amazing things that are from the Bronx and still in the Bronx and that’s what we wanted to highlight,” said Nicholson, the co-organizer of the event.
In order of appearance, the speakers will be: Gianna Valintina, the global director of marketing and partnerships at Spatial.IO; Nunez, the executive producer of the event who is a tech enthusiast; Ivelyse Andino, CEO and founder of Radical Health; Coviello Salines, founder of Amour Genieve; Avery Watson, a publicist, dancer and entrepreneur; Aura Martinez, a self-discovery and empowerment coach; and Luis Torres, an educator, school leader, military veteran and artist. The topics range from self empowerment to healthcare transformation, Web3, community and mentoring.
The event is sponsored by BronxNet, Amazon, AmourGeneve and Gun Hill Brewing Company.
The organizers hope to bring TED back to the Bronx in the coming years.
“As long as we can keep it going, we will,” Nicholson said.
Tickets for the event are available here.
Reach Aliya Schneider at [email protected] or (718) 260-4597. For more coverage, follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram @bronxtimes