Creating Home: A Conversation at Mary's Place

Join us at Mary's Place for a unique tour and conversation.

Mary's Place is a nonprofit organization operating in King County to addressing homelessness and empower homeless women, children, and families to reclaim their lives by providing emergency shelter, nourishment, housing & employment resources. Listen and participate in a community conversation on family homelessness and policy reform in Seattle/King County. We will share a spectrum of viewpoints - including those from Mary’s Place, the City of Seattle, Seattle Public Schools, and families experiencing homelessness - to develop, analyze, and suggest policy solutions that address homelessness.


Playing a Violin Outside the Box

Geoffrey Castle aims to shatter people’s preconceived notions of what is possible on a violin.

With a strong interest in community outreach, Castle is thrilled to give back through performances at schools from kindergarten to college. When playing for schools, Castle loves inspiring kids— first to pick up a stringed instrument, and then to learn to “play outside the box”.


Setting scientific research free

The results from taxpayer-funded, scientific research are often locked behind a paywall.

Jennifer Hansen, a senior officer in Knowledge and Research at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, says the cost of accessing that data is too high. Limiting access to the research results in social inequity and puts human lives at risk. She argues that the current model of research distribution is overdue for disruption. Hansen says it’s time to foster a scientific revolution through open access to data. Jennifer Hansen is an equity advocate with a fierce dedication to ensuring information and scientific knowledge is free and available to all. Her professional career has revolved around closing the digital divide and inspiring others to believe in the power of knowledge to shape their world. Ms. Hansen currently works at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation as the Senior Officer for Knowledge & Research. She drives the strategy development and management of the foundation’s research outputs and is an influencer in shaping the future of scholarly communication. She championed and led the implementation of the Foundation’s groundbreaking Open Access Policy – a policy requiring that all its funded published research be immediately available to everyone, everywhere without barrier or restriction. Nature called the bold action to open up scholarly research the”world’s strongest policy on open access research.” And, The Economist described it as “something that may help to change the practice of science.”


Everyone has a song - welcoming refugees through music

What started as a place to sing became a refuge.

Founded by Erin Guinup, just as the U.S. was closing its borders to citizens from select countries, the Tacoma Refugee Choir was determined to turn its musical practice into a celebration of human connection by welcoming voices from around the world. The Choir has created an original song to showcase the idea that it takes diversity to create true harmony. Featuring vocals by Wanz, QDot and Stephanie Anne Johnson.


Northwest Tap Connection on the TEDxSeattle 2017 stage

Dance as protest; say their names see their names feel their names

Using a combination of live performance and their viral-sensation video of the protest dance “Hell You Talmbout”, these Northwest Tap Connection students work to heighten awareness about black individuals killed by police.  Movement is power and these young people have the power to move us all.


A powerful strategy for disrupting child trafficking

Patty Haven Fleischmann is successfully combating child trafficking in Seattle and catalyzing similar nationwide efforts.

As a therapist, child of a Holocaust survivor, and “kid advocate,” Fleischmann uses her ability to hold two opposing truths to attract a diverse and committed community and disrupt a seemingly insurmountable problem. Launching a Seattle-based non-profit which has raised $4.5 million to fund local organizations that combat both supply and demand, Fleischmann is galvanizing the community and driving a national conversation.   A licensed marriage and family therapist of 25+ years, Patty is the co-founder and President of the StolenYouth board. StolenYouth’s mission is to support the rescue and recovery of our community’s sexually exploited youth. Patty and StolenYouth have worked tirelessly to build a unique coalition of organizations fighting trafficking on all fronts. Since then, these organizations have pioneered new ways to disrupt the scope and nature of child trafficking. This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community.


Ending homelessness, block by block

Architects Rex Hohlbein and Jenn LaFrenier ask us to consider “Yes in my backyard” as an answer to homelessness.

This father-daughter duo has an idea: let's reimagine our personal space by inviting homeless residents to move into beautifully designed, off-grid, homes built in residential backyards. Called “The Block Project” these tiny homes — built with neighborhood support and community volunteers— provides a path out of homelessness that encourages neighbors to come together as advocates, mentors and friends to those currently living on our streets. A Seattle native, Rex ran a successful residential architectural firm for 30 years. Seven years ago, after befriending several men experiencing homelessness along the Fremont canal, Rex started a Facebook page to raise awareness for those living unsheltered through the sharing of photos and personal stories. Today, that Facebook page has over 46,000 followers, becoming a thriving and inspirational non-profit, Facing Homelessness. This year begins a new chapter, as Rex combines both architecture and community outreach in starting a social justice architecture firm, BLOCK Architects, with his daughter Jenn LaFreniere. Jenn spent a little over five years working at Graham Baba Architects on an array of projects from small remodels to large commercial buildings. Discussions about starting a firm with her father, BLOCK Architects, sparked conversations about the ties between architecture and social justice, ultimately leading to the formation of the BLOCK Project, the first endeavor for their architectural firm


Disease eradication is within reach

Steve Davis is working to bring an extraordinary vision to reality—the global elimination of some of the world’s most deadly and debilitating diseases.

Davis is the president and CEO of PATH, a 40-year-old, Seattle-based, global health-focused, non-governmental organization which works on vaccines, drugs, diagnostics, devices, and system/service innovations. In this talk, Davis lays out the “how to” of disease elimination calling on his diverse experience as a former human-rights lawyer, a nationally-recognized technology business innovator and social activist. Steve Davis, president and CEO of PATH, combines extensive experience as a technology business leader, global health advocate, and social innovator to accelerate great ideas and bring lifesaving solutions to scale. Prior to joining PATH in 2012, he served as director of Social Innovation at McKinsey & Company, CEO of the global digital media firm, Corbis, interim director of the Infectious Disease Research Institute, and he practiced law at the international law firm K&L Gates. Earlier, he worked extensively on refugee programs and policies, and Chinese politics and law. Mr. Davis is a lecturer on social innovation at the Stanford Graduate School of Business. He currently is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, serves on the board of InterAction, and sits on several advisory groups, including the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on Social Innovation and the Clinton Global Initiative’s Global Health Advisory Board. He also serves as a trustee of the World Economic Forum’s Global Health Challenge. Mr. Davis earned his BA from Princeton University, his MA in Chinese studies from the University of Washington, and his law degree from Columbia University. He also studied at Beijing University.


Use the power of your diversity

As Vice President of Marketing for Boeing, Fariba Alamdari is the picture of success.

But the hurdles to achieve this have been many: being raised in a culture that prizes males, being an Iranian in Western society, and one of few women in the aerospace field. Despite the naysayers, Alamdari has continued to believe that being a woman and immigrant makes her a major asset — a belief affirmed when Boeing promoted her twice before she had even accepted their offer. For Alamdari, success starts with embracing your own diversity, and knowing the value you bring to your organization and community. Fariba Alamdari is Vice president, Marketing at the Boeing Commercial Airplanes. She joined Boeing from Cranfield University in the United Kingdom, where she served as chair of the university’s Department of Air Transport, and Dean of the Faculty of Engineering, Manufacturing and Science. She has published extensively on aviation-related issues. Fariba is a strong advocate of diversity and is a speaker at diversity forums. She believes in a compassionate leadership style focused on achieving results based on trust and respect for all. She is the recipient of several awards including: “Woman of the Year” by Air Transport News in 2016, “Ellis Island Medal of Honor” from The National Ethnic Coalition of Organizations (NECO) in 2016, “Leadership Award” from the Centre for Women & Democracy in 2015, the “Professional Award” from Career Communication Group, Inc in 2011. She is married, and has a son and a daughter. This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community.