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From opera singer to climate tech innovator, AI ethics disruptor to curiosity expert, TEDxMiami returns to the New World Center with stories of resilience to ignite community passion for positive change


Andrew Parker, founder of Papa, tackles loneliness among older adults. Beena Ammanath charts new paths to ethical AI. Daniel Betts, a climate tech innovator, revolutionizes cooling systems at Blue Frontier. Kunya Rowley, an opera singer and performer, explores belonging through the lens of Black music and arts. Dr. Leila Allen transforms behavioral neuroscience at Florida International University. Mike Pell, who self-describes as an unapologetic disrupter, pushes creative boundaries in tech and design. Scott Shigeoka changes lives through curiosity. Victoria Pelletier demonstrates unstoppable leadership and breaks pre-conceived limitations. 


On May 15, this diverse group of leaders, likely unfamiliar with each other before, will take the New World Center stage to share their resilience stories and the lessons learned from breakthroughs made along challenging journeys.


“The speaker selection process for TEDxMiami is a rigorous and thoughtful one. We consider a variety of criteria, including the speaker’s expertise, passion, unique perspective, and ability to articulate their story in a compelling and engaging way, but most importantly was their idea worth spreading?” says Jessica Wade Pfeffer, TEDxMiami Volunteer PR Director and President of JWI PR.


In 2023, TEDxMiami curated talks on the promise of tomorrow. This year, they invite everyone to reflect on personal accomplishments and what we have learned to reinvent ourselves, bounce back from setbacks, and thrive despite adversity.


“Our goal is for attendees to leave feeling empowered to navigate their own challenges with resilience and determination and inspire their communities to do the same,” continues Jessica. “While these stories are told by individuals, the ideas are about resilient communities coming together for the better.”


TEDxMiami Team (Left to Right): Nev Terzieva, Flavia Da Matta, Arianne Traverso, Vanitha Preston, & Jessica Wade Pfeffer Photo Courtesy of TEDxMiami

A good story about our challenges and hard-won perspective can be a cathartic release and a healing secret to lasting resilience. According to multiple studies, the positive pieces of an otherwise negative experience are encoded in our memory when we tell that story. Through that, we cultivate perseverance and celebrate hardiness.


“We hope TEDxMiami will have a profound impact on the local community and beyond by sparking meaningful conversations, fostering connections, and inspiring positive change,” says Jessica. “Through the sharing of powerful stories and ideas, we aim to ignite a ripple effect of resilience and empowerment that resonates far beyond the confines of the event venue.”


Human resilience is an incredible force that transcends the boundaries of our individual experiences. It can be passed on. We all face challenges, but it’s in the facing, surviving, and learning from them that we discover the scope of our strength. 

Sharing our personal stories is not just about recounting events; it's about forming connections and building supportive networks that drive us forward. Through our narratives, we find common ground with others, forging bonds that uplift and inspire. And in moments of reflection, we unearth extraordinary capabilities we may not have realized we possessed.


What’s your story of resilience?


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