TEDxZumbroRiver 2017 Speaker Lineup Announced!

Once again, the entries for the TEDxZumbroRiver event were impressive. From the initial submissions, to the pitch night event, to the final selection, the curation team has diligently selected local and national speakers to engage this year’s crowd and they are excited to announce the speaker lineup for this year’s TEDx event.

The 10 selected speakers – six of which are local and four of which are national – will have between 8-15 minutes to give their interpretation of this year’s theme, “What’s Possible.”  With a variety of backgrounds, experience, and interests, the speakers are preparing thought-provoking, original ideas that are guaranteed to spark engagement and inspiration.

Meet the 2017 TEDxZumbroRiver Local Speakers


Ayodeji Awosika

Ayodeji Awoskia

Ayodeji Awoskia is an author, speaker, and creative consultant who is passionate about finding one’s true definition of success.


Nicholas Dibble

During the day, Nicholas Dibble is a Principal Information Security Engineer at Mayo Clinic, but in his free time, he conducts independent research in his home lab in the areas of emerging technology, Internet of Things, cloud computing, and security.


Aaron Leppin, M.D.

Aaron Leppin, M.D., is an implementation scientist in the Knowledge and Evaluation Research Unit at Mayo Clinic and an Assistant Professor in its Division of Health Care and Policy Research.


Doug Scholz-Carlson

Doug Scholz-Carlson is Artistic Director of the Great River Shakespeare Festival in Winona, Minnesota where he will direct Richard III this summer. His work as a director, fight choreographer, and actor has appeared in theaters across the country.

Doug Scholz-Carlson


Becca Stiles-Nogosek

Becca is the Development Events and Volunteer Manager at the Minnesota Children’s Museum Rochester. She is passionate about her community, building connections, sharing stories, and being inspired by brilliant ideas.


Kim Van Brunt

Kim Van Brunt is a poet and nonfiction writer. Becoming a transracial adoptive parent opened her eyes in a much more personal way to the depth of her own white privilege. Now, she uses her story and her creative work to help others recognize systems of inequality and their power to affect change for the common good.

Kim Van Brunt



Meet the 2017 TEDxZumbroRiver National Speakers


Vivian Barad

Vivian Barad is a Senior Portfolio Director at IDEO. She has a passion for designing a better food system and spends a lot of time thinking about the intersection of food and health – from personal health to the health of the planet.


Scott Barry Kaufman

Scott Barry Kaufman is the scientific director of the Imagination Institute and conducts research in the Positive Psychology Center at the University of Pennsylvania. He is deeply interested in using psychological science to help everyone– all kinds of minds— live a creative, fulfilling, and meaningful life.

His writing has appeared in The Atlantic, Scientific American, Psychology Today, and Harvard Business Review. His latest book is Wired to Create: Unraveling the Mysteries of the Creative Mind.


Jimmy Chen

Jimmy Chen is the founder and CEO of Propel. Through Propel, Jimmy aims to use Silicon Valley’s technology playbook to fight poverty by building world-class software for low-income Americans.


Alfredo Quiñones-Hinojosa, M.D.

Alfredo Quiñones-Hinojosa, M.D., is chair of the Department of Neurologic Surgery at Mayo Clinic in Florida. Dr. Quiñones-Hinojosa has received many awards and honors, including being named as one of the 100 most influential Hispanics in 2008 and 2015 Forbes Magazine as one of Mexico’s most brilliant minds in the world.

His autobiography, “Becoming Dr. Q,” is about his journey from migrant farm worker to neurosurgeon. Recently, Disney with Plan B Entertainment announced that his inspirational life story will be featured in a movie.


Tickets on Sale for the May 18th Event – Reserve your Spot

Tickets are on sale (and going quickly) for the 2017 TEDxZumbroRiver event. The event will take place on Thursday, May 18, 2017, from 4:00 – 8:00 PM at Autumn Ridge Church in Rochester, MN.

For more information about the event, visit TEDxZumbroRiver.com/event/