2010 “Be the Solution”

The first ever TEDxMonterey took place on April 16th, 2010 and enjoyed participation from over 400 people both in person and online. Community leaders and innovators all assembled around the theme: “Be the Solution”, exploring new solutions, possibilities and technologies while also understanding the trap of the easy solutions. Speakers and performers dazzled the audience during the three sessions which corresponded to a sub-theme of possibility, perseverance and hope. Needed breaks provided participants with an opportunity to connect and explore the artwork and native plants on display. In the end, wine was drank, ideas discussed and possibilities created.

The event itself was meant to be part of the solution: a zero-waste affair. Did we accomplish no waste at all? Not really…did we get close? YES!  Every part of this experience was analyzed for waste and every known effort was made to reduce it. The name tags were made from puzzle pieces, yarn and clothespins – all reusable. The programs were printed on seeded paper to be planted and nurtured into flowers. The pre-event food waste went to a local sustainable pig farm and the post-event food and other waste was brought by the curator herself, Lynn McDonald, to the Monterey County Waste Management District for composting (She loves dirt!). Decorations were made by items the organizing team had at their homes along with artwork donated by two local youth non-profit organizations, native live plants from the Hilton Bialak Habitat and rocks found in local rivers. The caterer brought all the food in reusable containers and used local, organic items such as artichokes, strawberries and sustainable seafood. These efforts made the event better – no waste needed and should serve as a model for future events at the Monterey Institute.

Another significant innovation was the live audio in 8 different languages during the livestream of the event developed and supported in collaboration with the staff of the Digital Learning Commons at the Monterey Institute. An average of 50 people joined each audio stream and enjoyed the TEDxMonterey talks in Spanish, Russian, Chinese, Japanese, Russian, French, German and Korean. This brought a unique spin to our event, since our partner host has the only translation and interpretation school in the United States. Language and understanding language was a large theme running through many of the talks and the event as a whole. The student interpreters deserve tons of thanks for the tireless participation.

Amazing night at #TEDxmonterey last night. Who knew so many amazing people could fit into one room? Tweet from @kelleycalvert

Our sentiments exactly! We had a great group of people in attendance and the audience seemed ready to connect. The first session on possibility started with the magic of possibility and the exploration of the word solution and ended with music videos about food coops, solutions for using less water and a story on using your own “water” as a solution. The second session focused on perseverance hearing about technology to improve education results, art to save the climate, nuking boredom through teaching practices, and ended with a beautiful dance interpretation of our local agriculture movement. Dr. Ramon Resa typified the perseverance theme with his personal story of triumph from farmer worker to pediatrician against all odds. Our final session focused on hope and looked at getting dirty, how we have saved Monterey Bay, young musicians and their potential, crazy new computers you can play with and the lessons from a tortured writer on a bio-diesel road trip looking for hope and change.

It’s impossible to summarize this day in this short (or not so short) blog post! Monterey was the home to TED for many years and now has a new event in TEDx to inspire and connect the community. We are so thankful for all the support we received from our sponsors, impressed with our speakers and inspired by our community.  Thanks so much for helping us, in the words of TED presenter Jane McGonigal, realize our epic win.

To stay in touch with TEDxMonterey and hear when videos and photos are available, follow us on twitter, like us on facebook or subscribe to our blog feed.

Learn more about the wonderful presenters who took to the stage:

Kelley Calvert

Kelley CalvertAs a connoisseur of the written word and a lover of wordplay, Kelley Calvert entitled her most recent project Hope Walks into a Bar Looking for Change, a three-month journey around the United States in search of two elusive things: hope and change. Her 17-year-old car was powered by biodiesel, but in the borderlands, she saw migrants coming to the U.S. driven by hope. In New Mexico, scientists scoured the sky with telescopes in search of hope. Folks relied on crystals and numerology to provide hopeful insights in Sedona. From Santa Barbara to Oberlin, entrepreneurs converted used vegetable oil into fuel, hoping to scavenge profit from waste. Somewhere along the way, it occurred to the wandering spirit behind the wheel that hope and change are not nouns, distant concepts, or even metaphors…

In a previous life, Kelley Calvert was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Benin. Her current incarnation has placed her as Assistant Professor of English for Academic and Professional Purposes at the Monterey Institute of International Studies. She is currently writing her first book Hope Walks into a Bar Looking for Change and advocating Hope the Verb.

Watch Kelley’s video

Kateri Carmola

Kateri CarmolaA native of St. Albans, Vermont, Kateri Carmola is an Assistant Professor of Political Science at Middlebury College, in Middlebury, Vermont. She received her Ph.D. from the University of California, Berkeley, in 1999 and did her undergraduate work at the University of Chicago.

Since receiving her Ph.D. she has been teaching and writing about contemporary issues in the ethics and laws of war. Her new book, Private Security Contractors in the Age of New Wars: Risk, Law, & Ethics (Routledge), will be available in April 2010. It analyzes the legal, ethical, and sociological issues surrounding the use of private military contractors worldwide.  Her next project will focus on the legal and ethical challenges of counterinsurgency operations.

She has participated in numerous forums and events on private security contracting, the issues of the laws and ethics of war, including events hosted by the American Bar Association, the Princeton Project on National Security, and Harvard University Law School.  In September 2008 she provided expert testimony for the UN Working Group on Mercenaries, and in January 2010 was interviewed on NPR’s “On Point” with Tom Ashbrook. Watch Kateri’s video

K.A. Colorado

K.A. ColoradoInternational artist and sculptor K.A. Colorado has spent the last two decades working in various climatic conditions throughout the world, using ice and snow as both a medium and a subject.

Invited by the Arctic Scientific Research Library at CADIC-CONICET in Ushuaia, Argentina, at the Tierra Del Fuego by noted geologist and glaciologist Dr. Jorge Rabassa, K.A. Colorado has studied and visually captured icebergs in his paintings and sculptures to depict the changing glacial conditions in the Antarctic.

As the only artist invited among a group of renowned scientists and climatologists from around the world, K.A. Colorado participated in the International Conference on Hydrometeorological Security held in Moscow, Russia in September 2006. His paper on “Aesthetic Considerations and Implications of Snow Mass and Texture Changes” was published and posted at the Conference, which was attended by climatologists and geologists whose areas of expertise include the Polar and Arctic regions.

Recipient of the Los Angeles Contemporary Art Museum LA Artcore Award in 2008, K.A. Colorado’s work has joined science and art together aesthetically, conceptually, and intellectually, and explored the historical and human ramifications of our changing climate and environment.  Read a transcript of K.A. Colorado’s full TEDxMonterey talk

Lakhpreet Kaur Dhariwal

Lahkpreet Kaur DhariwalThe winner of the TEDx student speaker contest at the Monterey Institute, Lakhpreet is pursuing a Master’s degree in International Environmental Policy.

After graduating with a degree in political science from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Lakhpreet’s affinity for human rights and environmental stewardship inspired her current path of study. She feels that human rights issues can be addressed from a resource and environmental angle, as livelihoods and quality of life are intimately connected to nature.

Lakhpreet likes climbing, making music, camping, good conversations, and being underwater. She hopes to contribute to creating a more just and compassionate world. Ultimately, Lakhpreet intends to pursue a Ph.D. in the area of resource security and environmental justice.


Raphael Garcia

Raphael GarciaWith over 10 years of biology-based work experience spanning North America Raphael brings a unique set of skills and experience to his position as Design Associate for Rana Creek’s Living Architecture Department.

Recognizing the need to preserve wildlife and endangered species, Raphael has worked in a broad range of habitat restoration and wildlife management projects. Studying species such as the Steelhead Trout, Pacific Salmon, Mission Blue Butterfly, Snowy Plover, and California Red Legged Frog he has played a role in the design and implementation of projects intended to protect existing sanctuaries as well as establish healthy environments intended to support continued species preservation and development Raphael’s work has evolved to include matters relating to the efficient use of water resources, including stormwater and greywater. He was contributing author for the book“Managing Water: Avoiding Crisis in California” and is also assisting with the establishment of California’s new laws concerning the use of greywater.

Raphael’s professional expertise concerning wildland restoration, habitat design, and stormwater management have honed his abilities in managing the design, presentation, and implementation of construction projects with a unique balance between sustainability and function. Watch Rafael’s video

Laura Lee Lienk

Laura Lee LienkLaura Lee Lienk is a science and environmental/watershed education specialist. She brings thirty-four years of leadership and involvement with environmental, science education, and service learning programs kindergarten through university levels to her community and academia. She is currently serving in three position with CSU Monterey Bay. She is the Director of the Return of the Natives Restoration Education Project, Co-Director of the Watershed Institute and also the Applied Science and Technology Coordinator for the Service Learning Institute.

Laura Lee served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Argentina and completed her undergraduate BS in Science from the College of William and Mary and her Masters in Science from Cornell University. Watch Laura Lee’s video



David Merrill

David MerrillDavid Merrill is co-founder and president of Sifteo, a company based in San Francisco building the future of play. Sifteo’s first product is Siftables: a tabletop game console made of smart tiles that combines the social and physical play patterns of classic games with the interactive potential of video games.

David is a graduate of the Fluid Interfaces Group at the MIT Media Lab, where he studied with professor Pattie Maes and developed the first prototype of Siftables. Throughout his career his work has explored how human interactions with computers can leave the limitations of the desktop interface behind. His hand-tools for the digital age enable new forms of play, expressivity, problem-solving and collaboration. David’s background includes human-computer interaction research, design and implementation. He has lectured in computer science at Stanford University and led electronic music instrument design workshops at the MIT Media Lab.

David holds a Ph.D. and MS from the MIT Media Lab, and an MS in Computer Science and BS in Symbolic Systems from Stanford University. Watch David’s video

Monterey Jazz Festival

The education mission of the non-profit Monterey Jazz Festival is to perpetuate the uniquely American form of music known as jazz by presenting year-round local, regional, national, and international jazz performance and education programs. These hands-on, cutting-edge educational components include the Traveling Clinician and Latin Jazz Programs, with professional musicians visiting Monterey County schools to teach students how to play and improvise in jazz and Latin styles; the Artist-In-Residence Program, which brings a leading jazz performer to work with students throughout the year; the MJF Summer Jazz Camp, the MJF Instrument and Sheet Music Library, the MJF Digital Music Education Project, the Next Generation Festival, the Monterey County High School All-Star Band, the MJF Middle School Honor Band and MJF Vocal Jazz Ensemble, and the Next Generation Jazz Orchestra.

Rob Klevan

Rob KlevanDr. Rob Klevan has been the Education Director of the Monterey Jazz Festival since 2002. He earned his Ph.D. at the University of Texas in Austin, was a twenty-seven year music director and director of fine arts at the Stevenson School in Pebble Beach, and is also Director of UCSC’s Wind Ensemble and Large Jazz Ensemble. Among his many awards are the California Music Educators Association Educator of the Year in 1992, and a DownBeat Magazine Educator Award in 2009.





Patrick Hogan

Patrick HoganPatrick Hogan is an 8th grader attending the Kolbe Academy. A phenomenal young jazz pianist, Patrick has participated in the Monterey Jazz Festival’s Traveling Clinician Program, Summer Jazz Camp, and has been selected to the 2010 MJF Middle School Honor Band, in which he will be a featured performer at the Next Generation Festival on April 10, 2010, at the Monterey Conference Center. Patrick also performs with the Pacific Grove High School Jazz Club Band.





Stephen Palumbi

Stephen PalumbiSteve is the Harold A. Miller Professor of Marine Sciences and Director, Hopkins Marine Station at Stanford University.

Steve has lectured extensively on human-induced evolutionary change, has used genetic detective work to identify whales for sale in retail markets, and is working on new methods to help design marine parks for conservation. Steve’s first book for non-scientists documents the impact of humans on evolution (The Evolution Explosion WW Norton, NY). The next one, due out by Island Press in 2010, is an unusual environmental success story called Monterey Bay Reborn. Major work continues on the microdocumentary project, the Short Attention Span Science Theater. The series website http://microdocs.org received a million hits last year. Steve’s band Sustainable Soul has several songs out, including Crab Love and The Last Fish Left.

Steve holds a Ph.D. from the University of Washington, and a BA from The Johns Hopkins University. He has received numerous awards for research and conservation, including a Pew Fellowship in Marine Conservation.  He lives in Pacific Grove, CA with his family and is based at Stanford’s Hopkins Marine Station. Watch Steve’s video

“Magic Seth” Raphael

Seth Raphael "Magic Seth"With a Bachelors in Magic and Technology and a Masters in Wonder from MIT, Seth Raphael is doing what he loves, and blowing people’s minds. His childhood passion of magic had to compete with his love of computers. At times one threatened to eclipse the other as he alternatively wrote off magic as foolish, and technology as soul-less.

At last he reconciled his two obsessions, creating a cutting-edge form of entertainment. He studied technology and magic at Hampshire College, and the emotion of Wonder at the MIT Media Lab.  He was a TED Fellow in 2009.

Now he travels the world teaching organizations how to achieve things they never thought possible. Watch Seth Raphael’s video




Dr. Ramon Resa

Ramon ResaGrowing up as a child farm worker in a family of 15, Dr. Resa never imagined he could become a doctor. Abandoned by his single mother, who had 5 kids before she turned 20, he grew up in an environment of severe poverty, neglect, and a total disregard for education. Abuse, alcohol, and drugs were all around him.

It was his elementary-school teachers who opened his eyes to the idea of education and awakened in him the dream of going to college and becoming a doctor.

It wasn’t easy. He had to overcome low self-esteem, a speech impediment, isolation and recurring depression, prejudice, discouragement, and even opposition from his legal guardians.

For the past 25 years, he has been a pediatrician in the same rural area where he grew up. He cares for children who remind him of the child he was, and he tries to be a role model who cares for their minds and spirits as well as their bodies. Watch Ramon’s video

Nina Rosete

Nina RoseteNina is a business and social entrepreneur.  She is Vice President of Dare to Dream Fund, a 501(c)(3) organization that develops web-based tools to be used in conjunction with on-site student advocacy programming.  Dare to Dream Fund uses Web 2.0 best practices geared towards academic success, high school graduation and access to higher education.

Prior to joining Dare to Dream Fund, she was the President & CEO of JesMag Development, a real estate development company dedicated to responsible & sustainable development. Nina also coordinated leadership development programs at ChoiceCenter Worldwide in Las Vegas, where she was responsible for executing and developing curriculum for high-performance leadership programs.  Prior to founding JesMag, Nina spent seven years in investment banking at Deutsche Banc Alex. Brown and Banc of America Securities, where she closed over $3 billion worth of transactions.

Nina graduated with a B.A. in Economics and Mathematics in 2000 from Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois. Watch Nina’s video

Peter Shaw

Peter ShawPeter A. Shaw has relentlessly pursued pedagogical magic with students of English, French and Spanish, and facilitated the professional development of language teachers in Europe, Africa and Latin America. He is currently professor of Educational Linguistics in the Graduate School of Translation, Interpretation and Language Education at the Monterey Institute of International Studies. His interest in collaborative solutions in learning-centred pedagogy and faculty development complements his academic and professional work in learning, instruction, curriculum and assessment in language education.

Peter has a PhD in Linguistics from University of Southern California, an MA in Philosophy, Politics and Economics from Oxford University and an MA in Linguistics from University of Reading, England.



Fran Spector Atkins & SpectorDance

Spector DanceFran Spector Atkins is the Artistic Director of SpectorDance School, Company, Community Outreach, Creative Projects, and The Emerging Choreographers Showcase.

Academically, her credits include a B. S. in Occupational Therapy from Boston University, an M.F.A. from Mills College in Dance and Choreography and Certification in Laban Movement Analysis from the Laban/Bartenieff Institute of Movement Studies (New York City). She directed her own schools in NYC, Cleveland, and Monterey. She has been invited to guest teach, choreograph and perform throughout the United States and abroad. Some of her outstanding experiences include guest teaching and presenting her choreography at Oberlin College, Brown University and in Denmark, Egypt, England, Israel, the Island of Guam and Taiwan.

Spector Atkins has received numerous awards for excellence including the prestigious Dewar’s Young Artist Recognition Award for the State of California. Fran was featured in Carmel Magazine as one of 10 individuals making “altruistic contributions to the community.” SpectorDance was selected by The Arts Council for Monterey County as the “Outstanding Arts Organization in Monterey County.” In 2008, SpectorDance was selected as a national finalist for the Ovations TV award for “Excellence in the Performing Arts.”

Fred Wehling

Fred WehlingFred Wehling is Director of Educational Programs at the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies and Associate Professor in the Graduate School of International Policy and Management at the Monterey Institute of International Studies.

Wehling received his A.B. in International Relations, Political Science, and Russian from the University of Southern California in 1985, an M.A. in Political Science from the University of California, Los Angeles in 1987, a Ph.D. in Political Science, from UCLA in 1992, and a Masters of Instructional Science and Technology from California State University Monterey Bay in 2006. Before coming to the Monterey Institute in 1998, Wehling was a consultant at RAND, Coordinator of Policy Research for the University of California’s Institute on Global Conflict and Cooperation (IGCC), and a researcher at the Cooperative Monitoring Center (CMC) at Sandia National Laboratories.

In addition to teaching courses on policy analysis, nuclear nonproliferation, terrorism, and other topics, Wehling develops online courses and instructional materials and conducts research on terrorism with chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear materials (CBRN). He is contributor of The Four Faces of Nuclear Terrorism (2005) and World Politics in a New Era, 3rd ed. (2003) and author of various other books, articles, and reports. Watch Fred’s video