Sharon Dowell is a painter, public art commissioned artist, and Rowe Galleries Coordinator and Adjunct Professor at UNC Charlotte. She exhibits nationally and her work is in the collections of The Federal Reserve Bank, SPX, Renaissance Hotel, Ritz Carlton, Pricewaterhousecoopers, Fidelity Investments, and Duke Energy, among others. She kicked off her public art career in 2008 with a mural through The Arts and Science Council and in 2013, murals for The City of Concord, NC. Currently she is underway on a CATS Transit Blue Line light rail extension station, bus shelters for Durham’s Bull City Connector bus line, and an Elizabeth neighborhood public art projectRead More →

  CarlosAlexis Cruz is currently an assistant professor of voice and movement at UNC Charlotte and a recent winner of the McColl Award for the project “Nouveau Sud, Nouveau Cirque,” which translates to “New South, New Circus.”   He holds an MFA from the Dell’Arte International School of Physical Theatre where he studied a range of movement techniques. For his thesis project, Carlos developed a study on the convergence of circus and theater, during which he trained under the tutelage of Master Coach Lu Yi at the San Francisco Circus Center, specializing in the disciplines of aerial straps and acrobatic rope. He was a full-timeRead More →

Chuck Hawks CEO, Teen Driving Solutions Role:  Chuck co-leads curriculum development with our President, Dan Wagner, and is our primary classroom instructor and presenter for our teen driving classroom sessions.  His focus is on the overall leadership and guidance of our organization, and how we show up in the community. Qualifications and Expertise:  30+ years as a highly trained and skilled professional driver, involved in all types of driving instruction of all forms from teens, to racing, to diplomat protection. He has also performed almost a decade of research on how the various generations interface and work with one another, and has served as an expertRead More →

Chris McLeod is a licensed attorney with more than 20 years of fundraising experience. She is the President and Founder of Giving Matters, Inc., an intentionally small consulting firm focused on providing counsel to individuals, families, private foundations, donor-advised funds and businesses that want to make a difference with their charitable giving. Prior to founding Giving Matters, Chris McLeod held leadership roles at Habitat for Humanity, UNC Chapel Hill’s Kenan-Flagler Business School and Foundation For The Carolinas, one of the 10 largest community foundations in the country with over $1 billion in assets. Chris is the co-founder of The Institute for Philanthropic Leadership and itsRead More →

  Audrey Baran is the founder and Artistic Director of Baran Dance, a contemporary dance company which seeks to make dance more accessible and inspiring in the Charlotte area. After graduating Magna cum Laude from UNC Charlotte with a BA in Dance, Audrey went on to perform with a variety of dance companies and at numerous events, teach at Open Door Studios and Charlotte Ballet Academy, and serve as an Adjunct Lecturer in Dance at her alma mater. Her impressive portfolio does not end there! Her dance film, “Arms,” was awarded an honorable mention at the Movies by Movers Festival in 2013, her choreography workRead More →

Herrison Chicas is a professional Spoken Word Artist from Uniondale, New York. He is currently the Champion of the TEDxUNC Spoken Word Slam, and has been a Finalist in the Slam Charlotte, as well as the Bull City Slam. He was also a semi-finalist in the 2010 Brave New Voices Poetry Slam, and has been a two-time invitee to perform spoken word at TEDx-Charlotte. Throughout his career, Herrison has performed, collaborated, and competed with renowned artists such as Ed Mabrey, Bluz, Kane Smego, G Yamazawa, Dasan Ahau, and Ernie G. He has also performed at some of the most prestigious universities and poetry venues nationwide,Read More →

Chip Edens is the rector of Christ Episcopal Church, a 5600 member congregation in Charlotte, North Carolina. Chip is the moderator of the Faith Forum – a conversation about issues of faith and culture. Over the last number of years he has led conversations with thought leaders – New York Times bestselling authors, theologians, artists, business leaders, and politicians – exploring subjects ranging from civic leadership, to health and wellness. These events draw an audience from around the region with between 400 to 1500 in attendance and are watched on the internet around the world. In addition to his work in the church, Chip isRead More →

  Douglas Rader advises EDF leadership on the scientific aspects of policies and programs affecting oceans. He works with national and regional teams to leverage cutting-edge science in current Oceans Program projects and emerging ocean issues. His efforts include stronger fisheries management policies and programs that align conservation with the business of fishing, improved coastal habitat protection programs, and science-based networks of marine protected areas. Read more about Doug and see blogs he’s written here.Read More →

  Patricia Shafer is the founder and “Chief Catalyst” of Mothering Across Continents, a nonprofit organization where volunteer catalysts — people who work together to create change in the world — receive consulting, coaching and mentoring to make dream ventures a reality. Projects have been launched on four continents.   “We’re all on this planet together,” said Shafer. “We need to help our tribe.”   The former corporate strategist sees numerous opportunities for people to be engaged with global issues, one being service to orphans and vulnerable children. In late 2005, she wrote an op-ed piece for The Charlotte Observer encouraging metro Charlotte residents 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 →