Welcome to TEDxSantaCruz
Santa Cruz is a place where ideas incubate, collide, and ignite. It is this pulsing of the ideas, creativity, and diversity of Santa Cruz County that forms the heart of TEDxSantaCruz. Our fifth all-day live event TEDxSantaCruz 2019 ART OF HOPE is happening, Saturday, December 7, 2019, at the Rio Theatre.
Join our team! We’re looking for friendly, curious, detail-oriented problem-solvers to join our small, radically collaborative team. All roles are volunteer positions. We are taking applications for volunteers.
TEDx is a platform for ideas worth sharing.
This Year’s Featured Speakers
Featured Talks From Past Events
Our fourth all-day live event TEDxSantaCruz 2015 RADICAL COLLABORATION was a rousing success that happened Friday, April 24, 2015, to a sold-out and filled to the brim Rio Theatre.
You can see the videos of all our 23 speakers and performers who explored Radical Collaboration from nearly every angle, from civic engagement to climate change, from space exploration to self-exploration.
Coach and Organizer of Aztecas Soccer Program
As an adolescent, Gina Castaneda experienced intervals of homelessness and even lived in a car for a period of time with her mother. Despite the adversities of growing up in a violent neighborhood and a violent home, Gina avoided gang entrenchment. In April 2008, Gina founded the Aztecas Soccer Program for Latino juvenile probationers who affiliate with both Norteño and Sureño gangs. As the coach and organizer, Gina has successfully managed to assimilate these opposing gangs into teammates, on and off the field.
Associated Press Writer
Martha Mendoza is an Associated Press Writer whose reports have won numerous awards and prompted Congressional hearings, Pentagon investigations and White House responses. She won a 2000 Pulitzer Prize and George Polk Award for Investigative Reporting as part of a team that revealed, with extensive documentation, the decades-old secret of how American soldiers early in the Korean War killed hundreds of civilians at the No Gun Ri bridge. Mendoza is the recipient of numerous other state, regional, national and international journalism awards, including the Overseas Press Club's Madeline Dane Ross Award, the National Science Writers Association Award, California First Amendment Coalition Beacon Award for Freedom of Information, and repeated AP Managing Editors honors. She has reported for the AP since 1997, in Albuquerque, N.M., New York and Mexico City. She was a 2001 Knight Fellow at Stanford University and a 2007 Ferris Professor for Humanities at Princeton University. She lives in Santa Cruz, Calif. with her husband and four children.
Executive Director of the Santa Cruz Museum of Art & History (MAH)
Simon teaches radical exhibition design in the University of Washington Museology graduate program and writes the popular blog Museum 2.0. Her 2010 book, The Participatory Museum, was named "a future classic of museology" and is used as a text in cultural organizations and graduate programs internationally. Previously, Simon worked as an independent consultant to over 100 museums and cultural centers around the world, focusing on participatory community engagement. She served as curator at The Tech Museum of Innovation in San Jose, Calif., and was the Experience Development Specialist at the International Spy Museum in Washington, D.C.
urban designer, social catalyst, and a place making pioneer
Mark Lakeman is an unusual urban designer, social catalyst, and a place making pioneer. As founder of the design activist cultures of the City Repair Project, communitecture design collaborative, and Planet Repair Institute, Mark's work challenges conventions of thought and action, and even dares to suggest that much of history, that seems long past, may not yet be settled. His work to transform the American colonial grid into a network of intersections of convergence and cultural expression has become a movement that spans the continent. With more than 350 projects in Portland, Oregon alone, the projects emerge from communities as outrageous fusions of unheard of functions and irrepressible forms, in which design is employed as a means to bring people together. As a son of Portland, Oregon's visionary culture of design activism, Mark helps keep his city on the edge.
Alternate Public Defender in Santa Clara County
Jessica Delgado, a public defender for sixteen years, works at the Law Offices of the Alternate Public Defender in Santa Clara County. After the 2012 election, Jessica was assigned to work on the Three Strikes Reform Project. She has secured the release of fifteen people serving life sentences for non-violent, non-serious offenses. Dave Gomez was sentenced to life in prison for car theft. He served eighteen years in state prison prior to his release in June of 2013. Dave is currently enrolled in school and mentors several other men who are putting their lives back together. Bilal Chatman was sentenced to life in prison for selling drugs. He served ten years in state prison prior to his release in June of 2013. He is currently working full time, plays softball and serves as a sponsor to five people working through their own recovery issues. Jessica, Dave, and Bilal extend their deep gratitude to the Stanford Three Strikes Project and the NAACP Legal Defense Fund for all of their hard work in securing justice on many fronts.
writer and evolutionary biologist
Rob Dunn is a writer and evolutionary biologist who studies the life inhabiting what he considers to be one of many last frontiers, human backyards, bedrooms and bodies. He does this work by engaging the public in the study of their own homes and bodies through the yourwildlife.org project. Dunn leads projects on the mites found on adult humans, bacteria in belly buttons and guts, fungi in houses, and ants in backyards. Dunn has written three books, Every Living Thing, The Wild Life of Our Bodies, and The Man Who Touched his Own Heart (2015). In addition, he has worked with the public to publish three books based on studies based on public science, Dr. Eleanor's Book of Common Ants, Dr. Eleanor's Book of Common Ants of New York City and The Book of Invisible Life (2015).
In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TED has created a program called TEDx. TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. Our event is called TEDxSantaCruz, where x = independently organized TED event. At our TEDxSantaCruz event, TEDTalks video and live speakers will combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events, including ours, are self-organized.