TEDxSitka this Sunday!

We’re just a few days away from TEDxSitka, which takes place in Odess Theater (inside Allen Hall) on the SJ Campus here in Sitka. The evening features six talks – all under 18 minutes – centering around the theme Radical Imagining. Tickets are $25, and are available at Old Harbor Books. Any tickets remaining will be available at the door. 

Luis Urrea’s talk will draw on his many years living around, researching, and writing about the people of the Mexican-American borderlands.

Alan Weisman will talk about history’s most influential invention (which you may have never heard of) and how we can solve the mess it made.

Solomon Endlich will talk about recent observations of other solar systems and their exoplanets, and the way that those recent discoveries confront us with a reality that we could not have possibly imagined.

Winona LaDuke will draw on her experience as a leading Native-American activist in her talk about indigenous economic thinking for the 7th generation. 

Skyler Wright will be exploring the effects of growing up in an online world without clear social norms for behavior.

WT McRae and Andrew Hames will discuss the process of putting on a fully staged musical in two weeks with the Sitka Fine Arts Camp musical theatre program. The talk will feature student performances. 

2014 Speakers Announced!

We’re excited to announce our 2014 TEDxSitka speakers!  This is an incredible and inspiring group of people, and we hope to see you at the event on July 20th in Odess Theater. Refreshments will be available when doors open at 6:30, with talks beginning at 7pm. 

Solomon Endlich is a passionate physicist who, through his research, has journeyed from the beginning of the universe to the swirl in a toilet bowl. Born and raised in Northern California, he exchanged the sun and his surfboard for a PhD in theoretical physics at Columbia University as a National Science Foundation Fellow. Now, as a research scientist in Switzerland at the École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne, he is using the modern mathematical tool set of quantum field theory (which is the natural language of particle physics) on a broad set of physical systems. When not exploring the world mathematically, he does so in person. Highlights include hiking up volcanoes, skiing across glaciers, climbing sheer cliff faces, swimming with hammerhead sharks, and fishing for wild steelhead.

Winona LaDuke is an Anishinaabekwe (Ojibwe) enrolled member of the Mississippi Band Anishinaabeg who lives and works on the White Earth Reservations, and is the mother of three children. She is also the Executive Director of Honor the Earth, where she works on a national level to advocate, raise public support, and create funding for frontline native environmental groups. 

A graduate of Harvard and Antioch Universities, she has written extensively on Native American and environmental issues. Author of now six books, including The Militarization of Indian Country (2011), Recovering the Sacred: the Power of Naming and Claiming (2005), the non-fiction book All our Relations: Native Struggles for Land and Life (1999, South End Press), and a novel - Last Standing Woman (1997, Voyager Press).  She is a former board member of Greenpeace USA and serves, as co-chair of the Indigenous Women’s Network, a North American and Pacific indigenous women’s organization. In 1994, Winona was nominated by Time magazine as one of America’s fifty most promising leaders under forty years of age, and in 1998, Ms. Magazine named her Woman of the Year for her work with Honor the Earth.

Skyler is a Pacific High School student here in Sitka, and will be exploring the effects of growing up in an online world without social norms for behavior online, and will touch on cyber bullying and other online issues. Skyler yearns for the development of online social constructs that will help youth grow up in both the physical world and the online world. 

Alan Weisman has written several books and won numerous international awards for his work in journalism and literature, including the critically acclaimedThe World Without Us, which describes a post-human scenario of the planet. His next book, Countdown: Our Last, Best Hope for a Future on Earth? was released in September 2013 by Little, Brown and Co. Among his other works are Gaviotas: A Village to Reinvent the World (1998), winner of the Social Inventions Award from the Global Ideas Bank, An Echo In My Blood (1999), La Frontera: The United States Border With Mexico, and We, Immortals (1979). His reports from around the world have appeared in Harper’s, The New York Times Magazine, the Los Angeles Times magazine, the Atlantic Monthly, Orion,Audubon, Mother Jones, Discover, Condé Nast Traveler, Resurgence, and several anthologies, including The Best American Science Writing 2006.

Luis Alberto Urrea, 2005 Pulitzer Prize finalist for nonfiction and member of the Latino Literature Hall of Fame, is a prolific and acclaimed writer who uses his dual-culture life experiences to explore greater themes of love, loss and triumph. Born in Tijuana, Mexico to a Mexican father and an American mother, Urrea has published extensively in all the major genres. The critically acclaimed and best-selling author of 13 books, Urrea has won numerous awards for his poetry, fiction and essays. The Devil’s Highway, his 2004 non-fiction account of a group of Mexican immigrants lost in the Arizona desert, won the Lannan Literary Award and was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize and the Pacific Rim Kiriyama Prize.

WT McRae and Andrew Hames will present a talk about and a performance by the Sitka Fine Arts Camp’s Musical Theater Program, an intensive and remarkable camp that stages a broadway style musical from start to finish in just two weeks. 

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