TEDxDetroit returns with inspirational insights from Michigan


TEDxDetroit returns on Wednesday, ready to inspire the region with 30 speakers who have Michigan ties. The annual event is an independently organized subgroup of the national TED conference, which localizes the sharing of ideas about technology, entertainment and design.

“It’s technology, it’s business, it’s art,” said Charlie Wollborg, executive producer and curator of TEDxDetroit. “It all comes together to kind of put new ideas in your head and rekindle the fire in your belly.”

Wollborg said “bridges” are one of this year’s dominant themes.

Renée Walker, president of Renée Walker and Associates in West Bloomfield, will talk about the value of burning bridges, while Justin Turk, CEO and founder of Livegistics in Detroit, a technology platform for entrepreneurs, will discuss the bridges between construction and technology.

Benji Rosenzweig will give a talk on communication without traditional bridges. Rosenzweig’s daughter lives with Coffin-Siris syndrome, a rare condition where a missing “bridge” between her two cerebral hemispheres limits her ability to speak.

“Communication challenges do not mean a lack of ability to communicate,” he said. “And people with communication problems often understand a lot more than we give them credit for.”

Among other speakers, Stefan Tongur, Vice President of Business Development at Electreon, will discuss the latest developments in self-charging roads for electric cars.

Sarah Welch, culinary director and partner at Detroit-based restaurant Marrow, will ask people to re-examine their outlook on food waste.

Detroit chef Sarah Welch takes part in the new season of

“I want people, basically, every time they open their trash can to think, ‘Is this a trash can? “, She said. “(I want them) to really think about whether or not what they are throwing away is garbage or something that could be tomorrow’s dinner, or an inspiration for the dinner of the next week or stock in a month.”

Huel Perkins

The full list of speakers includes:

  • Huel Perkins, Retired Anchor, Fox 2 Detroit
  • Sarah Welch, Culinary Director and Partner at Marrow Restaurant
  • Mujeeb Ijaz, CEO and Founder, Our Next Energy
  • Roop Raj, News Anchor, Fox 2
  • Princess Castleberry, CEO, Castle Risk Management and HR Consulting; Founder, Cibeles Beauty
  • Stefan Tongur, Vice President of Business Development, Electreon
  • Daniel Martin, magician, animator, creative entrepreneur
  • Rochelle Riley, Author, Director of Arts and Culture for the City of Detroit
  • Dion Walcott, Director of Partnerships, Pensole Lewis College
  • Gail Perry-Mason, Founder, Money Matters for Youth
  • Steve Lowisz, CEO of Qualigence International, Speaker, Investor
  • Andy Didorosi, founder of Detroit Bus Company and EV Startup Mutiny
  • Sydney Davis, Founder and CEO, NixCode
  • Tim Finkel, actor, educator
  • Renée T. Walker, President of Renée Walker and Associates
  • Kwaku Osei, Co-Founder and CEO, Farmacy Food
  • Dr. Paula Ruffin, Chiropractor and Nutritionist, New Hudson Chiropractic
  • Jacob Barr, actor
  • Mike Geeter, comedian, actor, writer
  • Michael Angelo Caruso, Presentation Coach, Edison House
  • Jenny Feterovich, Entrepreneur/Film and TV Producer, Parliament Studios Inc.
  • Justin W. Turk, CEO and Founder, Livegistics
  • Ian Prukner, President/Co-CEO, E-Commerce Champion
  • Aya M. Waller-Bey, Ph.D. Candidate in Sociology, University of Michigan
  • Vincent Paul, President and Artistic Director, Music Hall Center
  • Craig Degenfelder, Executive Director, Gas Strategy, Consumers Energy
  • Quinton Robinson, Multidisciplinary Performance Artist, Flint Steam Society
  • Benji Rosenzweig, Vice President, Colliers International Detroit, Founding Board Member, Coffin Siris Syndrome Foundation
  • Neal Dreisig, Head of Gas Strategy, Consumers Energy
  • Deon Forrest, Greektown Hotbox, drummer

In addition to discussions, the day will also include TEDxLabs and TEDxMarketplace which will showcase local technology, art and small businesses.

The event will also feature a variety of performers, including an illusionist, comedians, a roller-skating troupe and percussionists.

Wollborg said the event will not only be fun, but a way to improve your life and the lives of others.

“You can either drive change or you can sink,” he said. “It’s a way to evolve your work, yourself and all of us.”

TEDxDetroit 2022

8:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. Wednesday, October 26

Music Hall Center for the Performing Arts

350 Madison Street, Detroit

Tickets are $100. Visit www.tedxdetroit.com.


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