About Us, TEDx, and TED


The individuals involved with TEDxUMN have a passion for bringing together the great thinkers at the University of Minnesota and giving them the opportunity to share their ideas worth spreading and discuss our shared future. We provide these great people the opportunity to share these ideas on a global stage and with an incredibly diverse audience. We believe in the power of ideas to change attitudes, lives and ultimately the world.

TEDxUMN was started January 2011 with the acquisition of a TEDx license from TED.  For more information, please visit TED.com.

The TEDxUMN Leadership Team – 2013/2014

Gabriel Franta (frant243@umn.edu): Coordinator & Organizer

Hanna Hillman (hillm097@umn.edu): Chief Curator

Rachel McGuigan (mcgui276@umn.edu): Community Engagement Director

Vhinasyhah Raja Gopal (rajag025@umn.edu): Community Engagement Director

Thomas Ducastel (ducas001@umn.edu): Production Manager

JD Braun (braun460@umn.edu): Chief People Officer

Aashin Shah (shahx115@umn.edu): Chief Event Manager

Emily Dueker (dueke002@umn.edu): Chief Event Manager

The entire organization is made up of dozens of other experienced, interesting, and passionate individuals.  You will most likely get the chance to meet many of them at events and meetings!  They do incredible work to make this entire event happen.

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, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. 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. Started as a four-day conference in California 25 years ago, TED has grown to support those world-changing ideas with multiple initiatives. The annual TED Conference invites the world’s leading thinkers and doers to speak for 18 minutes. Their talks are then made available, free, at TED.com. TED speakers have included Bill Gates, Al Gore, Jane Goodall, Elizabeth Gilbert, Sir Richard Branson, Nandan Nilekani, Philippe Starck, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Isabel Allende and UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown. The annual TED Conference takes place in Long Beach, California, with simulcast in Palm Springs; TEDGlobal is held each year in Oxford, UK. TED’s media initiatives include TED.com, where new TEDTalks are posted daily, and the Open Translation Project, which provides subtitles and interactive transcripts as well as the ability for any TEDTalk to be translated by volunteers worldwide. TED has established the annual TED Prize, where exceptional individuals with a wish to change the world are given the opportunity to put their wishes into action; TEDx, which offers individuals or groups a way to organize local, independent TED-like events around the world; and the TEDFellows program, helping world-changing innovators from around the globe to become part of the TED community and, with its help, amplify the impact of their remarkable projects and activities.

Follow TED on Twitter at twitter.com/TEDTalks, or on Facebook at facebook.com/TED.

TED2012, “Full Spectrum,” will be held in Long Beach, California, with the TEDActive simulcast in Palm Springs, California.

Comments Closed