Valaida Fullwood – Author, “Giving Back” and Charles Thomas – Photographer, “Giving Back” Valaida Fullwood is a true multi-hyphenate: writer, project strategist, and award-winning author who together with Photographer Charles Thomas, created “Giving Back,” a book of stories and images that reframe portraits of philanthropy, which won the McAdam Book Award in 2012. The two have known each other for five years and speak together around the country. In addition to being the Photographer of “Giving Back,” Charles Thomas is the Executive Director of Queen City Forward, which works to help socially conscious entrepreneurs meet what he calls their triple bottom line: people, planning, and profit. TheRead More →

It’s a rare opportunity to get the story of the “snappy” lady behind the lens. Deborah Triplett is not only a TEDxCharlotte organizer several years going, she’s also been documenting and capturing all the happenings before, during and after the TEDxCharlotte event as one of our principal photographers.  Through her lens, we see the story of the TEDxCharlotte journey- past, present and future. Learn a thing or two about the gifted and fun Deborah Triplett in our interview below. What do you love about TEDx? The diversity of ideas that are shared. The intellect involved – creativity – heart & hope. It does a body good.Read More →

Manny Ohonme, Samaritan’s Feet International Manny Ohonme was inspired to start Samaritan’s Feet International after his difficult childhood in Lagos, Nigeria. Growing up, he didn’t even have shoes. His life changed when a stranger from Wisconsin gave him his first pair of shoes. He went on to get a full basketball scholarship in the U.S. and eventually earned a Master’s degree in International Business. Although he became successful, he never forgot his home country and has been giving back since the founding of his nonprofit in 2003. Here, Ohonme reveals what he’ll discuss at TEDxCharlotte on Feb. 15! TEDxCharlotte: What do you plan to talk about atRead More →

Though Dale describes himself as “someone who is not all that comfortable describing himself,” his many achievements in social justice entrepreneurship around the Charlotte area paint an admirable and fascinating picture. From helping to bring Habitat for Humanity to Charlotte, along with a small group of pastors, to creating the Share-a-Home of Charlotte program, Dale has continually demonstrated that an individual’s passion truly can create significant, positive change. In his current position as Executive Director of the Urban Ministry Center of Charlotte, Dale and his community partners have been working to end local homelessness, with “efforts known for their innovation and reliance on talented, compassionateRead More →

Jackson Lewis, of the Twelve in Twelve Foundation has accomplished so much, and done so much good in the world, particularly for his age.  He has traveled the world with his family and touched the lives of others internationally.  He has documented it all in his blog,, has done what many of us can only dream to do and seen places most of us can only dream to see. Yet many of us do dream to see the world to the same extent as Jackson.  All of us have causes for which we hope to contribute our time and efforts towards, to the same extent thatRead More →

  We caught up with Mike Watson, TEDxCharlotte’s emcee extraordinaire, this week and got the inside scoop on the man behind the mic.   Q: What do you love about TEDx? A: I love that TEDx provides a space where individuals can connect and inspire each other through face to face engagement, where barriers have been stripped allowing honest commentary in a way that is fundamental to personal growth.   Q: What excites you about what you do as Emcee extraordinaire? A: As emcee I have access to all the speakers and planners, which in essence provides me with an ongoing opportunity to see andRead More →

Karla Williams is a principal of The Williams Group and has 15 years of experience with assisting over 200 nonprofit entities. Here, she reveals what she’ll be discussing at TEDxCharlotte on February 15! TEDxCharlotte: What will you be talking about at TEDxCharlotte? Karla Williams: The role that civic engagement plays in a community’s culture and quality of life. The back story of the spirit of democracy in American and Charlotte. How Charlotte differs from other communities and what that means for philanthropy. TEDxCharlotte: How can people make a difference in non-profits if they can’t afford to give money? KW: Ironically, and in the recent decade, Americans focusedRead More →

Farmer and chef Cassie Parsons has been a leader in Charlotte’s local food movement. In 2009, she ran the city’s first upscale food truck. The following year, she opened her brick and mortar restaurant Harvest Moon Grille. Every item on the menu is grown or raised on her property, Grateful Growers Farm, in Denver, North Carolina. Parsons gives us a preview of her presentation on Feb. 15! TEDxCharlotte: What will you be talking about at TEDxCharlotte? Cassie Parsons: The future of food as both a farmer and as a chef. I will share both perspectives. TEDxCharlotte: Why is locally grown food so important to Charlotte? CP: EconomicallyRead More →

As the head brewer at NoDa Brewing Company in Charlotte, Chad Henderson has a passion for local beer. He’s hoping to inspire other people to follow their own dreams when he speaks at TEDxCharlotte on February 15. Here’s a sneak peek of what you can expect from his discussion. TEDxCharlotte: What will you be talking about at TEDxCharlotte? Chad Henderson: I will be discussing how I have developed a career out of a passion in craft beer and how much of my personal success and the company’s success has been due to us not limiting ourselves and our product to expectations from the general industry.  ByRead More →