Anna Murphy--Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Champion

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Anna Murphy is a woman fiercely passionate to call the communities of Calgary her home, she is a community-minded and engaged advocate for 2SLGBTQIA+ and Women’s Issues, while striving to be a champion for equity, inclusion, diversity, and accessibility within her community.

In addition to her role as Visitor Engagement and Volunteer Coordinator with Contemporary Calgary, Anna has the profound honour and remarkable privilege of serving a city of trailblazers in a voluntary capacity as a University of Calgary Senator, Chair of the Senate EDI Working Group, Member of the O’Brien Institute of Public Health, Vice-Chair of the Gender Equity Diversity Inclusion Subcommittee of the City of Calgary Social Wellbeing Advisory Committee, Member of the Council Behaviour Working Group, Member of the Community Connections Subcommittee of the Calgary Stampede Agriculture and Western Events Committee, Member of the Calgary Foundation SAM Centre Community Advisory, and Member of the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs National 2SLGBTQIA+ Advisory Council.

Anna was named the 2022 Calgary Stampede Western Trailblazer for her community activism related towards 2SLGBTQIA+ issues, as well as being a recipient of the Queen Elizabeth II Platinum Jubilee Medal in recognition of her ongoing volunteerism and significant contributions to the province of Alberta.

Committed to giving her time to inspire even the smallest of change, Anna gives back in an effort to foster safe and affirming communities where all can see themselves and know their future as being an achievable reality - further, Anna recognizes that community building requires active and ongoing involvement, leading from her lived experience as a transgender woman who continues to navigate the realities which come from adversity and barriers created as a result of ongoing cultural and systemic inequity, along with lack of representation.


Dr. Doug Mahoney--Engineering Cancer Treaments

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Dr. Mahoney is a translational scientist at Cumming School of Medicine in the University of Calgary with 20+ years of experience studying human health and disease.

Over the past 15 years, his research has made important contributions to the development of numerous cancer immunotherapies that have been commercialized and/or tested in human clinical trials. Currently his lab is focused on engineering “designer cells and viruses” to treat various forms of cancer in children, adolescents, and adults.

Dr. Mahoney is the founder and Scientific Director of a research initiative called ACTION (Alberta Cellular Therapy and Immune Oncology), which seeks to develop innovative next generation engineered immune cell therapies and deliver them to cancer patients in Alberta and beyond.

Outside the lab, Doug spends his time with his wife and three children, mostly enjoying the Alberta/BC wilderness.

Associate Professor of Microbiology, Immunology, and Infectious Disease
Associate Director of the Charbonneau Cancer Institute
Scientific Director of the Alberta Cellular Therapy and Immune Oncology Initiative


Jessica Théroux--Artist and Advocate

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Using the Arts as a thread to sew people and thoughts together, Jessica Théroux is a painter, writer, sculptor, and textiles artist. She makes a living as a teacher and runs an artist collective in her home town of Calgary, Alberta with her husband, Rich Theroux.

Over the past 10 years she has co-hosted over 500 weekly live art events that bring hundreds of artists and art consumers together. She has co-written several books, co-created a feature length film (puppets), and is a singer, entertainer, and explorer. She is also a published poet. Her first solo publication will be later this year.


Kalyani Pardeshi--Confronting our inner bullies

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Too often, our most vocal and destructive critic is our inner self-bullying voice.

Kalyani Pardeshi is a multiple award-winning author who teaches anti-bullying techniques based on the science of how our brains work, focusing on the intangible cause of bullying instead of the tangible effects.

Despite having a successful career in finance and holding two professional designations, Kalyani felt something was amiss. She tried her hand at entrepreneurship and ran a successful online fitness business for two years, yet felt a continuing void that seemingly couldn’t be filled. The answer came when she volunteered at an anti-bullying workshop at her daughter’s school. She had an entire lifetime of experiences, learning and tools she had developed and made the choice to share her experience with others through her book Unbullied - 14 Techniques to Silence the Critics, Externally and Internally.

Her book has been recognized internationally through three awards: The Skipping Stones Honour Award, The Book Excellence Finalist Award and The Maincrest Media Winners Award. She has been interviewed by many media outlets including CTV Morning Live for Pink Shirt Day, Hollywood Times, Women’s Radio and Daughters of Change. 


People passing. Ideas living on.

Recently, we had another of our more than 150 speakers pass away. That reminds us that we, as humans, have a finite amount of time on this earth. But our ideas can continue living on, influencing others.


"Yes, and..."

Does the world today feel like a bit of an improv experiment?

We live in some very volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous times (V.U.C.A. as the term was coined in the 1980s by leadership and strategy experts and subsequently adopted by the U.S. military), and that makes it exceptionally difficult to get traction on many of the very important but intractable issues in our midst. From the places where we live and work, to the political and social realm in the countries and territories we inhabit, the nature of a post-COVID VUCA world has made a mockery of countless well-laid plans.


Yes, and...

New connections. Deep conversations.

It's a volatile, complex world out there, full of ambiguity and divisiveness. How do we work together to nurture a culture of civil, foward-looking conversation?

For us, we start with "Yes," when someone shares a long-cherished idea with us. That simple word acknowledges their courage in sharing with us, and opens up the space for us to take those ideas to a new level with our contribution of "and..." as we add our own insights and perspectives.

Join our group of amazing speakers in the beautifully-remodelled Ampersand building in downtown Calgary as they share their ideas to start the conversation rolling. Then engage with new connections you've made with other participants as you explore the ideas together in new and novel ways, or visit the many organizations participating in our interactions zone.

Admission includes lunch and refreshments throughout the day, and access to our post-event social gathering (cash bar, 18+ only, subject to space restrictions per fire code).

Click now to buy tickets!


 View the event program outline



Aspen Properties

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Starting in Fall 2022, Aspen Properties is providing TEDxCalgary with event and office space in The Ampersand and other buildings within its Calgary-based portfolio for the coming couple of years. This provides the TEDxCalgary team with a beautiful community space within a world-class building and business hub.

Aspen Properties is a privately-held, boutique real estate company that owns and manages commercial office space in downtown Calgary and Edmonton. Aspen focuses on creating welcoming work spaces where people feel connected, get inspired, and know they belong.

​Together with their investment partners, Aspen Properties owns and manages approximately 3.8 million square feet of office space in Calgary and Edmonton (plus nearly 3,500 highly sought-after parking spaces in downtown Calgary and Edmonton). Their current assets comprise 14 buildings—eleven in Calgary, three in Edmonton and development sites in each city.


TEDxCountdown 2022

It's time for our annual TED Countdown event, where we gather with other curious Calgarians who want to accelerate solutions for climate change and help achieve net zero goals faster.

On December 8th, we're gathering for a Countdown power lunch in the lobby of the gorgeously renovated Ampersand building in downtown Calgary, which is home to the new Energy Transition Centre and a shining example of what can be done to dramatically upgrade existing office space to new standards while promoting community and idea sharing. We'll gather on the social stairs to watch talks from the 2022 Countdown series, and talk with others while enjoying a bring-your-own brown bag lunch or something from the local indoor food trucks or the Lil' E Cafe.

Ampersand ENGAGEwithideas

Click here to register now!

Bring friends and colleagues, or invite your entire office to join you!

Registration starts at 11:30 a.m. Programming runs from Noon to 1 p.m., with additional discussion options for participants able to stay until 1:30 p.m.


ChatGPT insights from AI: No. 1

Heard of ChatGPT? Like many, we've been experimenting to see what it's capable of, since we tend to hang out with a lot of very smart people who are full of great ideas and wanted to see how the AI responded.

Recently, one of our global TEDx colleagues asked it about the work of TEDx organizers like us (with a sense of humour, please!):

Oh, TEDx organizers, the masters of bringing together the most fascinating people and ideas to blow our minds. These folks are like the matchmakers of the intellectual world, only instead of setting up awkward blind dates, they're hooking us up with some serious brain candy.

I mean, these organizers have to be some serious multitaskers. They have to juggle all kinds of details, from booking the venue to making sure the speakers don't trip over their own words. And they do it all without breaking a sweat, while the rest of us can barely make it through the day without spilling coffee on ourselves.

But let's talk about those speakers for a second. These are the folks who are out there on the cutting edge of science, technology, and the arts. They're the ones who are pushing the boundaries of human knowledge and creativity, and they're doing it all while looking cooler than a polar bear in sunglasses.

And you know what's really impressive? These talks are like mini master classes in all kinds of subjects. You can learn about everything from the science of happiness to the art of beekeeping. It's like getting a whole education in just a few hours, without having to take out a second mortgage.

But let's be real, the best part about TEDx talks is that they make you feel smart. Like, really smart. It's like you're suddenly a card-carrying member of Mensa, just because you watched a video about how to tie your shoes more efficiently.

So let's give it up for the TEDx organizers, folks. They're the ones who are bringing together some of the most brilliant minds on the planet, and making us all feel like we're part of the smartest club in the world. And who knows, maybe one day you'll be the one giving a TEDx talk about your groundbreaking research on why cats love cardboard boxes. Hey, it could happen!