TEDxPhiladelphia 2019: Unintended Consequences

By TEDxPhiladelphia (other events)

Wednesday, May 15 2019 8:00 AM 6:30 PM EDT

The moment that we recognize the impact of an unintended consequence, a new story unfolds. Ideas that arise from unintended consequences are deeply personal. An unintended consequence forces us to reassess our assumptions and challenge our narratives. 

Unintended Consequences is the official theme for TEDxPhiladelphia 2019

The daylong multidisciplinary conference will bring together engaging speakers, performers, and participants to share their stories and experiences of unanticipated moments, their challenges and unexpected opportunities that arose from this, and how it's shaped who they are and what they do today. 

Schedule Overview: 
8-9am Registration
9am-12:10pm Session 1 & 2
12:10-1:40pm Lunch
1:40-4:30pm Session 3 & 4
4:30-6:30pm Reception 

Live Streaming and Scholarships
is committed to making our conferences and salons accessible for everyone. For those who are interested in seeing a talk but unable to attend in person, the entire event will be live streamed at no cost. If you would like to attend Unintended Consequences but are unable to afford the full ticket price, a limited number of scholarships will be made available. To apply for a scholarship, please fill out this form. While scholarships will be reviewed on a rolling basis, please note that regular conference tickets may sell out before all scholarship recipients are selected. Finally, all of the talks will be posted to YouTube after the conference.


The TEDxPhiladelphia 2019 speaker roster includes:

  • Aïcha Ly
    Aïcha Ly is an intelligence and strategy professional on the Corporate Strategy and Planning team at Independence Blue Cross, where she specializes in delivering actionable insights to leaders across the largest insurer in southeastern PA to drive growth. Her passion lies in sharing knowledge and ideas, and in her current role, provides thought leadership on strategies to understand drivers of consumer behavior.

    Aïcha has an MBA from Drexel University and is a seasoned presenter at conferences throughout the United States.  She has shared knowledge on a wide range of topics including scenario planning, the importance of human-centered design, and leveraging digital technology to better understand evolving consumer needs.

    Aïcha is also an avid supporter of and strong contributor to organizations geared towards the economic and civic empowerment of underserved communities. Drawing from her history as a Senegalese immigrant growing up in the U.S., Aïcha has shared insights related to her own experiences navigating the complexities of race and identity and the transition from blue collar to white collar work settings.  Aïcha is passionate about challenging conventional ideas and promoting progressive and inclusive dialogue.

  • Annalicia Geeter
    Annalicia Geeter is a Design Strategy Consultant and Entrepreneur with 5+ years of consulting and industry experience leading software implementations. She is a conceptual thinker who helps drive transformative change for her clients through a human centered and empathy led approach.

    Annalicia has an M.B.A in Strategic Design Thinking at Thomas Jefferson University and has a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Widener University.  Her purpose and mission is to develop programs, services and frameworks that inspire and motivate people to participate in their communities and fuel a more sustainable future.

  • Gabriella A. Nelson
    Gabriella A. Nelson is a city planner, possessing a strong affinity for issues at the confluence of urban development and public health. She currently works as a Project Analyst with the Philadelphia Housing Authority to help house some of the city’s most vulnerable residents and maintain a much needed level of affordability as the city resurges. She believes the city is for everyone, especially for those who wish to remain after bearing decades of disinvestment and devastation. Gabriella identifies as a problem-solver, an inquisitive thinker, and a creative whose experiences and opinions are deeply rooted in her Blackness, womanhood, and humanness.

  • Graham Quinn
    Graham Quinn currently serves as the Executive Director to the City of Philadelphia’s Philly311. He graduated with a BA in Economics and minor in Business from the University of Colorado of Boulder. He went on to receive his MBA from The George Washington University and was selected for the Potomac Fellowship award. Graham's professional background is in Finance and Strategy. He brings over 10 years of experience managing teams for Fortune 100 companies as well as several start-ups and joined Philly311 in 2012. He was given the Customer Engagement Award by the Managing Director's office of the City of Philadelphia for his work on the Philly311 Mobile Application.

  • Kyle Shenandoah
    A lifelong Philadelphia resident, Kyle Shenandoah is an avid community advocate striving towards equitable urban development, improved transportation infrastructure, and economic empowerment. As Vice President of the Grays Ferry Civic Association, he has spearheaded several successful large-scale job fairs in partnership with multiple organizations in South Philadelphia and dedicated his social media presence to share employment opportunities & job readiness programs throughout the city. In 2017, he co-founded The Tasker Morris Neighbors Association to share with residents about ongoing urban development projects and educate his community about local zoning & housing issues. In June 2018, Kyle along with residents from the community were successful in advocating the new SEPTA Bus Route 49 which would connect his South Philadelphia community to job hubs and health resources in University City and Suburban Station; a historical first for the residents of Grays Ferry. With input from his neighbors, communication with local nonprofits, and outside independent study, Kyle compiled a list of recommendations addressing gaps of need, effective urban development, and active resource allocation for the community in a plan called Grays Ferry 2022. For his work, he received notable accolades including a mayoral citation, several city council citations, congressional recognition, and a gubernatorial commendation from PA Governor Tom Wolf.

    Officially, Kyle sits on the board of multiple organizations in Philadelphia including: NExT Philadelphia of The Urban League of Philadelphia, SEPTA Citizen Advisory Committee, SPECTRUM Health Services Inc, DVRPC Public Participation Taskforce, and Keep Philadelphia Beautiful. His leadership and advocacy also earned him a two-year appointment on the Mayor's Philadelphia Millennial Advisory Committee.  In May 2018, Kyle was elected as a 4-year terms as a member of The Democratic State Committee in the 8th Senatorial District and Committeeperson in the 36th ward.

    Recently, Kyle has been nominated as a finalist for the 2019 Philadelphia Social Innovations Awards in Policy & Systems Change for his leadership and work towards urban infrastructure and transportation.

  • Meghan Talarowski
    Meghan Talarowski is the founder and director of Studio Ludo, a non-profit dedicated to building better play through research, design, and advocacy. She has degrees in architecture and landscape architecture, over 15 years of experience in the design field, and is a certified playground safety inspector. Her research focuses on how the design of play environments impacts physical health and social behavior, and has been presented at conferences worldwide. Her work has been featured by The New York Times, The Atlantic, NPR, Medium, Next City, Landscape Architecture Magazine, and World Landscape Architecture Magazine.

  • Nydia Han
    Nydia Han is an Emmy award winning news journalist specializing in consumer investigations and the creator of #ThisIsAmerica.

    Most of Nydia’s career as a journalist has been dedicated to exposing scams, helping viewers save money, and troubleshooting consumer-related complaints and disputes.   

    In her work related to #ThisIsAmerica, Nydia hopes to inspire all of us to get to know each other’s unique American stories, check our own biases, and act as positive agents of change and unity in our communities.  

    Nydia is dedicated to helping the community in a myriad of ways. She is on the community advisory board for the Asian American Women's Coalition and volunteers her time for a number of other organizations.  She is especially passionate about raising awareness and desperately needed funds for lung cancer research after the passing of her mother in 2009. Nydia also enjoys mentoring aspiring journalists.

    Nydia received a Bachelor of Science in Journalism with a focus on International Studies from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University.

    Nydia is a mom to two young children, a wife and a friend.  She enjoys good food, wine, and conversation, but, most of all, a good laugh.

  • Sara Goldrick-Rab
    Sara Goldrick-Rab is Professor of Higher Education Policy & Sociology at Temple University, and Founder of the Hope Center for College, Community, and Justice in Philadelphia, as well as the Wisconsin HOPE Lab. She is best known for her innovative research on food and housing insecurity in higher education, having led the largest national studies on the subject, and for her work on making public higher education free. She is the recipient of the William T. Grant Foundation’s Faculty Scholars Award and the American Educational Research Association’s Early Career Award, and in 2016 POLITICO named her one of the top 50 people shaping American politics. Her latest book, Paying the Price: College Costs, Financial Aid, and the Betrayal of the American Dream (University of Chicago, 2016), is an Amazon best-seller and a 2018 winner of the Grawemeyer Award, and has been featured on The Daily Show with Trevor Noah. The Chronicle of Higher Education calls her “a defender of impoverished students and a scholar of their struggles,” she is ranked 7th in the nation among education scholars according to Education Week, and in April 2018 the Carnegie Corporation awarded Dr. Goldrick-Rab the Carnegie Fellowship.

  • Stephanie Sena
    Stephanie Sena is the founder and executive director of the Student-Run Emergency Housing Unit of Philadelphia (SREHUP) - a non-profit homeless shelter operating since 2011, where students provide shelter, food, and community to individuals experiencing homelessness in Philadelphia. She and her organization spearheaded The Piece Project, which promotes economic justice and food security through a variety of programs, and The Breaking Bread Village - a community of tiny homes and services for people and their pets who are experiencing homelessness. The project houses people and works to get them back on their feet while also increasing the inventory of affordable housing through client/volunteer rehabbing of vacant homes. In addition, Stephanie works to increase the services available to people who are homeless and low income, and advocates for policy changes needed to create a more just and equitable community where more people have access to the resources they need to thrive. Stephanie teaches history of poverty, homelessness, and resistance movements in the Center for Peace and Justice at Villanova University. She trains her students to be critical thinkers capable of being good stewards of the world’s resources, and compassionate citizens who advocate for a more just society.

  • Youngmoo Kim
    Youngmoo Kim is Director of the ExCITe (Expressive and Creative Interaction Technologies) Center, an institute at Drexel University for transdisciplinary research and discovery connecting technology and communities, and Professor of Electrical & Computer Engineering. His research group, the Music & Entertainment Technology Laboratory pursues AI for music and sound, human-machine interfaces and robotics for expressive interaction, and K-12 outreach for maker and STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts & Design, and Mathematics) education. Youngmoo has also served as Resident Technologist for Opera Philadelphia, developed LiveNote with the Philadelphia Orchestra, and is an advisor for the Philadelphia Museum of Art, and the Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance.

    In 2018, he co-organized the National Convening of Education Innovation Clusters in Philadelphia with Digital Promise and co-authored the Making Culture, a national study of education makerspaces. He is co-author of the National Academies report “Branches from the Same Tree” on the integration of the Humanities & Arts with Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine in Higher Education, released May 2018, and recently co-edited a special issue of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences focusing on creativity and collaboration. He received Drexel's 2012 Christian R. and Mary F. Lindback Award for Distinguished Teaching, took “Scientist of the Year” honors at the 2012 Philadelphia Geek Awards, and is a member of the Apple Distinguished Educator class of 2013. His research has been supported by the National Science Foundation, the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, and the NAMM Foundation, among others.

    Youngmoo received his Ph.D. from the MIT Media Lab and holds Master's degrees in Electrical Engineering and Music (Vocal Performance Practice) from Stanford University as well as Engineering and Music degrees from Swarthmore College. He has extensive experience in music performance, including 8 years as a member of the Tanglewood Festival Chorus and as part of productions with American Musical Theater of San Jose and SpeakEasy Stage Company (Boston).

  • Michelle Angela Ortiz
    Michelle Angela Ortiz is a visual artist/ skilled muralist/ community arts educator who uses her art as a vehicle to represent people and communities whose histories are often lost or co-opted. Through community arts practices, painting, and public art installations, she creates a safe space for dialogue around some of the most profound issues communities and individuals may face. Her work tells stories using richly crafted and emotive imagery to claim and transform spaces into a visual affirmation that reveals the strength and spirit of the community.

    For over eighteen years, Ortiz has designed and created over 50 large-scale public works nationally and internationally. Since 2008, Ortiz has led art for social change public art projects in Costa Rica & Ecuador and through the US Embassy in Fiji, Mexico, Argentina, Spain, Venezuela, Honduras, and Cuba.

    Ortiz is a 2018 Pew Fellow, a Rauschenberg Foundation Artist as Activist Fellow, a Kennedy Center Citizen Artist National Fellow, and a Santa Fe Art Institute Equal Justice Resident Artist. In 2016, she received the Americans for the Arts' Public Art Year in Review Award which honors outstanding public art projects in the nation.

  • Mouaz Moustafa
    Mouaz was born and raised in Damascus, Syria before moving to the US as a teenager. he is the current Executive Director for The Syrian Emergency Task Force (SETF). As former staffer for Congressman Vic Snyder and Senator Blanche Lincoln, Mr. Mouaz Moustafa spent a few years on Capitol Hill before joining SETF in the fall of 2011 to help advocate on behalf of the pro-democracy movement in his native Syria. He regularly travels to Turkey, Syria, and Jordan. He has organized many staff and congressional delegations to Turkey and Jordan including Senator McCain's trip to northern Syria in 2013. He worked closely with the Defector Caesar, bringing him to testify in front of the House Foreign Affairs Committee in the US House of Representatives. Mouaz has also worked closely with the US Holocaust Memorial Museum to bring awareness to the atrocities taking place in Syria including a continuing exhibit of the Caesar photos currently at the Museum. 

  • Keith Green
    Keith directs the development of new initiatives and the expansion of the LandCare program at Philadelphia Horticultural Society, which is recognized as a national model for reversing the ravages of blight in many cities through its “clean and green” treatment of vacant land. Keith has extensive experience in construction management and landscape installation projects. He currently oversees the long-range planning process for the program, determines the scale of the work to be performed each season, and cultivates key partnerships to ensure the successful delivery of the program. Keith’s expertise is in vacant land stabilization and management, capacity building for small business contractors, community engagement, and landscape construction.

TEDxPhiladelphia is a volunteer-driven, not-for-profit initiative, licensed by TED and created in the spirit of the TED conference and its mission, “ideas worth spreading." TEDxPhiladelphia offers interactive, immersive experiences for all participants, from speakers to attendees. TEDxPhiladelphia is a program of CultureTrust Greater Philadelphia.