James Russell

Predator Free New Zealand’s bold plan to restore birdsong to Aotearoa

Meet James Russell: rat trapper and a world leading island conservationist.

James’ work brings together a variety of scientific methods to solve contemporary conservation problems, and he is currently on a quest to eradicate introduced mammal predators from all of New Zealand. More recently, James has been researching the social implications of pest control and the dynamics between humans and conservation.

Dr Russell is an Associate Professor at the University of Auckland and Strategic Advisor to the Predator Free NZ Trust.

Kat Clarke

Your Words have the Power to end suffering of LGBTQ youth

Adopted from Russia as a young child and overcoming adversity as a teenager, Katerina (Kat) Clark was motivated to make a difference for other young people in the Bay of Plenty.

Kat established Tauranga Pryde and continues to provide ongoing support as a student advocate at the University of Waikato.

In recognition of Kat’s work on behalf of the LGBTQ community she was presented with two Youth Week awards and is a Local Hero New Zealander of the Year.

Rob Weinkove

CAR T-cell therapy: Reprogramming the immune system to treat Cancer

Dr Robert Weinkove is Clinical Director of the Malaghan Institute, a biomedical research institute in Wellington, NZ.

Rob is a blood specialist researching a cutting edge, personalised, cancer treatment known as Chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cell therapy. CAR T- cell therapy is a treatment, which involves taking a patient’s own immune cells, reprogramming them and returning them back to the patient to fight the cancer.

Rob and his team are developing a clinical trial to evaluate a “third generation” CAR T-cell therapy.  He hopes that this will present a paradigm shift for treatment of lymphoma, and possibly for other cancers, in the future.

David Downs

Don't Humour the Tumour

David is a published author on New Zealand Innovation, with two highly successful books – No.8 Re-wired, and No.8 Recharged.

He’s an ex-comedian, TV and Radio actor, and a genetically modified organism who documented his battle with cancer in the book A Mild Touch of the Cancer. David regularly presents and gives talks on his cancer journey and on the power of positive thinking and optimism.

Alex Hotere-Barnes

Beyond Cultural Paralysis: a path towards just relationships

Alex is a Pākehā product of the Kaupapa Māori educational movement. He works closely with teachers, school leaders and community members to help create relationships that are culturally and socially just.

As an educator and researcher with affiliations to Mātaatua, Tainui and Te Tai Tokerau areas, he is fascinated by what supports and gets in the way of mutually advantageous relationships between Tāngata whenua and Non-Māori. Alex is interested in bilingual schooling, philosophy, hip hop, tikanga Māori revitalisation, and having a laugh!

Olly Hills

The Adventures of a 12 year old Cicada hunter

Olly Hills is a 12-year-old entomologist from Hamilton who wrote a field guide to the New Zealand cicadas when he was just 10 years old. He has appeared in a season of “Fanimals” television shows on TV2 in a special segment called “Bugs with Olly” and was an invited speaker at the 2018 Entomological Society of New Zealand conference. Olly has an infectious love of all insects and nature that he loves to share with others.

Stacey Sims

Women are Not Small Men: A paradigm shift in the Science of Nutrition

Stacy Sims is a question-asker and boat rocker (disruptor) when it comes to human performance and physiology. She has asked the questions her academic predecessors said were too difficult to answer and gone after those answers.

Stacy has been widely recognized as a visionary for her thought leadership across the sports performance industry and will leave our audience with new insights into how to better understand themselves and biohack their routines for better performance.

email: ssims@waikato.ac.nz

Danielle Appleton

Is New Zealand Dairy in danger of being milked out of existence?

Danielle Appleton is helping emerging food technology companies carve out a better future for Aotearoa New Zealand. Danielle used a decade of experience improving processes in the dairy industry to co-found dairy and alternative-dairy startups KiaOra Milk and Evolution Meadows.

She currently works out of Level Two Innovation Hub, NZ’s most successful deep-tech incubator, and is incredibly passionate about the Future of Food. She’s pushing NZ to adopt new food technologies, but not for the reasons you might think.

Nick Bowers

Nick Bowers’ is an American entrepreneur, designer, and creator whose drone design helped Emirates Team New Zealand win the 36th America’s Cup. Underneath it all, he is a dreamer.

From building wood boats and airplanes as a child, to his current positions as Lead Designer at Periscope Aerospace and CEO of Kodiak Aerospace & Founder of Kettle Cinema, the secrets behind his revolutionary drone designs might surprise, and will certainly inspire.

email: nicholasbowersmail@gmail.com

Kathryn Berkett

Neuroscience of Device Zombies

Mother to two adolescent children, Kathryn has dedicated 22 years to understanding how extreme trauma impacts the developing brain. Holding a Masters in Educational Psychology and certification as a Neurosequential Model of Therapeutics Practitioner, she now uses her skills to train others and to develop interventions that assist reparation of the physical and psychological aspects of impacted brains.

Armed with the knowledge that trauma can have huge emotional, behavioural and physical outcomes, Kathryn is passionate about sharing information with the wider community through her work.

Leo Murray

Living with less is living with more: Co-creating a new story for Humanity

Changemaker and thought leader, Leo Murray, cares deeply about the survival of our species and our planet. Catalysing a necessary paradigm shift for people to make changes out of love for the natural world rather than fear of what they stand to lose.

Specialising in regenerative sustainability, behaviour change and civil disobedience, Leo’s company Why Waste is reducing negatives impacts through waste minimisation. Local to Tauranga Moana, this conscious activist is seeking to improve the current system by co-creating a new story for humanity.

email: leo@whywaste.co.nz; phone: 022 066 4869

Sam Sheaff

Entertainment / Performance.

Sam performed Flyaway, his piece of slam poetry. This is a type of spoken word performance that is often presented in a competition style. Sam was competing against nothing but our ability to keep up with his flow (*cringe* do the youths even use the word flow?).

His piece was a reflection the apprehensive time between high school and University, which, oof. He concluded “Exams are hard, but it’s harder combatting the fear”. Truer words never flowed.

Austin Taylor

Entertainment / Performance.

Austin’s dance rendition of Crazy Little Thing Called Love made it difficult to tell his legs from his arms, such were his contortions.

I can tell you he wore the nattiest powder-blue two-piece suit (short-sleeved! Chic!) with contrasting sparkly pink tie which made my own outfit of red tartan and leopard print feel glum. I can also tell you at one point he used his extended leg as a guitar which is how I knew for sure we were all having a great time.


Entertainment / Performance.

Our final entertainment gift was from the Sia’amelie Tongan Dance Group who embodied the fluid elegance of the Tongan surf in dance form.

I had less Pakeha Paralysis and more Pakeha Wistfulness watching the dancers’ fluid elegance teach us about the Tongan way of life. I feel fortunate to witness the fruits of these dancers’ efforts to nurture the gifts if their Tongan culture. May we consider to honour these gifts.

Will Johnston

Our beloved Emcee.

Over 1 million views on a TEDxTauranga Talk

In 2021 Angela Loucks Alexander spoke on Escaping the Hidden Prison of Auditory Processing Disorder. If your auditory system works like a computer, your ears are the hardware and your brain is theRead more

Latest News Jan 2023

Date – Saturday 16th September 2023 Venue – Bay Arena, Mount Maunganui We’re taking speaker applications and nominations now. We're looking for ideas worth spreading -  New twists on old /Read more

Latest News Dec 2022

After our small 2021 event which provided a unique opportunity to be in the intimate, stunning surroundings of the UoW,  the team has decided to go BIG in 2023.  The venue is secured and we’reRead more

Our final talk is here!

Kia ora koutou! Dr Sandra Clair’s talk is here for your viewing (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JMuVP6EDdDw). Her game-changing perspective on how Aotearoa could provide an integrated healthcareRead more

We’ve got more talks!

Kia ora koutou! Another week – more recordings! How sweet! We are excited to share Meng Foon’s talk with you (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FMVcHOJ0sik) and Angela Loucks Alexander’s talkRead more

TEDxTauranga 2021 speaker videos

We know it’s been a minute since we posted an update. We have some exciting news – some of the recordings are up on YouTube. Check them out and be sure to share it around: Vitale LafaeleRead more

A recount of TEDxTauranga 2021 – RE:Imagine

by Carly Shorter After a long wait, the big day finally arrived. TEDxTauranga has transformed the auditorium of the University of Waikato’s Tauranga campus. With the bright red X standing tall asRead more

Matt Watkins – TEDxTauranga 2021 Speaker

Let’s welcome Matt – another innovative speaker joining our distinguished group! Matt Watkins is the founder of One Earth Technologies, a nascent startup combining 3D printing and recycled materiRead more

Akash Dutta – TEDxTauranga 2021 Entertainer

Aside from all the speakers, we are as excited for the entertainment for our evening – Akash Dutta! Akash is a jazz pianist/composer based in Wellington. He is currently in his first year ofRead more

Meng Foon – TEDxTauranga 2021 Speaker

Made in Hong Kong – born in Gisborne – working for Aotearoa Meng Foon was born in Tairāwhiti to working class migrant parents but soon immersed himself in a community that didn’t look or soundRead more

Dr. Angela Loucks Alexander – TEDxTauranga 2021 Speaker

Our next speaker is as excited as we are for her to be speaking at TEDxTauranga 2021! Dr. Angela Loucks Alexander, Audiologist, has spent 15 years specializing in diagnosing and treating AuditoryRead more

Vitale Lafaele – TEDxTauranga 2021 Speaker

We are thrilled to announce Vitale Lafaele as another speaker at TEDxTauranga 2021! Vitale served in the NZ Army for seven years and the Tamaki Makaurau Police for 30. He rose through the ranks toRead more

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