2015 Artist

A textile artist working in locally sourced natural dyes who finds inspiration in what most people think of as weeds: indigo, goldenrod and tickseed.

2015 Emcee

An award-winning photographer for National Geographic, this 2014 TEDxCharleston speaker will do about anything to get into a TEDx talk for free.

Navigating From Storm To Agreement

Whether at home, school or in the workplace, John Zinsser observes that most people want to avoid disagreement, but at what cost? Like a summer thunder storm, conflict regularly occurs and has benefit. Zinsser makes the case that it’s the legal-based model of how we react to conflict, which creates the maelstrom. For a more fulfilling path forward, he encourages people to embrace conflict, using three waypoints to negotiate a beneficial outcome.

Entanglement: Aerial Silks Duo

Jordan Anderson and Clayton Woodson elegantly suspend themselves and the audience’s breath. This duo’s performance exhibits strength, flexibility, fearlessness, and trust. With the grace of ballet dancers and the daring of circus performers, they create beauty as they spin through the air supported by silk and their skill.

Guinea Suite

Ushering a colorful, vibrant energy of ancient times, Wona Womalan awakens the collective unconscious. This performance celebrates the seasons and the elements of life. The Charleston-based ensemble is influenced by traditional Guinean rhythms. Celebrating the distinctive style of an all-female Dun-Dun (bass drum) section, they are dedicated to preserving the arts and culture of West African dance, drum, musical and folkloric traditions.

Return From Chaos: Treating PTSD

Peter Tuerk, the director of a VA PTSD program, introduces how we process experiences and trauma. Using examples from his research, he describes how it’s possible to process memories and their associated meanings to overcome a traumatic incident. When active avoidance impedes natural recovery the most effective healing is facilitated through treatment designed to limit avoidance and to assist with the processing of relevant information.

Drawing The Line With Political Cartoons

From the Charlie Hebdo tragedy, Steve Stegelin recognizes the two sides of the same coin – one that provokes to instill fear, and the other to instill awareness and thought. A published satirist since college, Steve Stegelin passionately believes in the power of the pen. This editorial cartoonist in only a few square inches of space and a “deceptively cute” style targets hypocrisy and chaos from his adopted hometown of Charleston, South Carolina.

Finding Home Among The Homeless

Not long after graduating from Furman University, Derek Snook embarked on an unusual career path, and lived at a homeless shelter in his hometown. There he observed first-hand the difficulties for those who were trying to get ahead. Snook shares how he was challenged by someone whom he least expected. From this experience, Snook found the support and courage to write the next chapter of his own story, in order to help others find voice to theirs.

Secrets Of A Wounded Healer

Nancy Simpson describes herself as uniquely positioned to de-stigmatize mental illness because she has been on both sides of the locked door. With great honesty and humor, Dr. Simpson, who is a licensed clinical psychologist, courageously uncovers what can lay behind the milk and honey. Walking the talk, Dr. Simpson offers a personal testimony for the need to de-stigmatize mental illness.

Life Is Full Of Delays: Finding Peace With That

Percussionist Ron Wiltrout and saxophonist Dan Voss transport listeners to a new realm of music. This structured improvisation, titled Life is Full of Delays— Finding Peace reflects the emerging patterns of natural systems, which seek balance. From the field recording of nature sounds, the two performers respond from opposite ends—one simple, the other elaborate, and they subtly begin connecting, as they play towards the other’s direction.