For Immediate Release

October 20, 2016

Contact: Christine Stone, 412-559-1425 cstone@stones2.com

Winchester Thurston Upper School Students Hosting TEDxYouth Event on October 22, 2016

PITTSBURGH -- In the spirit of "ideas worth spreading," upper school students from Winchester Thurston School will host their first TEDxYouth@SquirrelHill event at the Kresge Theatre at Carnegie Mellon University on Saturday, October 22, 2016, from 10 AM to 5 PM.

Through the recognition of TED talks - short, powerful talks (18 minutes or fewer) delivered by leading thinkers and doers - this event will bring together students, educators and leaders in the Pittsburgh region to hear from dynamic speakers under the common theme of Ability.

“As Winchester students, we recognize the city is our campus, that our high school isn’t the only center for learning. We’re excited to have this event at CMU, located between the Shadyside, Oakland and Squirrel Hill neighborhoods. CMU is a global research university known for its world-class programs. I can’t think of a more inspiring location and it’s right in our backyard,” said Sophia Stone, co-founder of TEDxYouth@SquirrelHill. 

Eleven speakers of diverse backgrounds and subject areas will speak to the theme of ability, each presenting their own distinct idea. As the audience is presented with these series of ideas, they will form their own connections to the theme Ability, making for an engaging and thought provoking experience.  

 “When we were completing the application last winter, sitting in a coffee shop and hoping for the best, we were just two sophomores with a vision. I’d like to think that this process has allowed us to grow as people and as leaders in our community. When we initially decided to create TedxYouth@SquirrelHill, we were inspired by another event. Now, we want to provide that same inspiration to others,” said Ross Tedder, co-organizer.

Tedder continued, “organizing this event has felt like a roller-coaster at times, but this experience has been every bit worth the ride. I’m incredibly grateful for my friend and co-organizer, Sophia and the rest of the team. They’ve worked hard, and are a large part of why this event will be a success. I’m extremely excited.”

Student team leaders include: Hanna Riley and Chris Uribe, high school juniors who worked to secure funding and oversaw the budget. Isana Raja, a sophomore, led the curation efforts and secured the speakers. Anatea Einhorn, a junior, led the PR efforts. The event will be emceed by Winchester Thurston senior, Josh Brelsford.

Speakers include:

   Emmai Alaquiva. Emmy® Award-winning film director, composer and mentor, known for his impact across mix-media art platforms.

   Gregg Behr. Executive Director of Grable Foundation, recently recognized by the White House as a “Champion of Change” in the area of learning through technology and other advances in education.

   Maria Caruso. Founder of Bodiography + Director, Department of Dance, Performing Arts at LaRoche College.

   Grant Charney. A senior at Winchester Thurston School, visual artist + musician with the band Johnny Hates 45’s.

   Simin Yazdgerdi Curtis. President, CEO + Founder of the American Middle East Institute (AMEI).

   Janet Gerster. A visually impaired HR Recruiter at the University of Pittsburgh.

   JasiriX. A hip hop artist + social activist who speaks to race, privilege and politics.

   Dr. John Archie Pollock. Professor of neuroscience in the Department of Biological Sciences at Duquesne University + co-Director of the Chronic Pain Research Consortium. Emmy® Award winner.

   D Raja. Co-founder of CEI (Computer Enterprises, Inc.) + founding chair of the University of Pittsburgh’s Computer Science Industry Board.

   Dr. Michelle Ultmann. Physician, Pediatric Community Medicine

   Melissa Felder Zappala, Esquire. Washington DC based attorney with a hearing disability. Partner at the high-profile litigation law firm of Boies Schiller & Flexner.

Tickets can be found at www.tedxyouthsquirrelhill.com/tickets

Additional information and the rest of the speakers can be found on TEDxYouth@SquirrelHill’s website www.tedxyouthsquirrelhill.com

Sponsors of the event: Howard Hanna Real Estate, Charles J. Hilton & Associates, Stone Global Initiative, Winchester Thurston School, Schell Games, Goldberg, Kamin & Garvin Law Firm, and Dr. & Mrs. John Uribe.


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, TED Talks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection. 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, usually in the form of short, powerful talks (18 minutes or fewer) delivered by today's leading thinkers and doers. Many of these talks are given at TED's annual conference in Vancouver, British Columbia, and made available, free, on TED.com. TED speakers have included Bill Gates, Jane Goodall, Elizabeth Gilbert, Sir Richard Branson, Nandan Nilekani, Philippe Starck, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Sal Khan and Daniel Kahneman.


TED's open and free initiatives for spreading ideas include TED.com, where new TED Talk videos are posted daily and TEDx, which provides licenses to thousands of individuals and groups who host local, self-organized TED-style events around the world; and the TED Fellows program, which selects innovators from around the globe to amplify the impact of their remarkable projects and activities.


Follow TED on Twitter at http://twitter.com/TEDTalks, Facebook at (http://www.facebook.com/TED) or, Instagram at (https://instagram.com/ted)