10 of the Best Quotes from TEDxDayton 2016

BY: Lauren Rinehart
last updated 10/20/2016
10 of the Best Quotes from TEDxDayton 2016

In its fourth year, TEDxDayton has once again delivered an impactful, thought-provoking event full of incredible ideas worth sharing.

10 of the Best Quotes from TEDxDayton 2016

TED talks are short presentations delivered by someone with experience in the subject that help the audience to consider a normal thing in a new way, learn about something entirely new, or break down a complex subject into easier to understand concepts.  This year the theme was “Search” and the talks dealt with a diverse list of topics including gender, prejudice, privacy, musicals, hospitality, “space junk,” burlesque, and many more.

Audience members left Victoria Theatre on October 14 brimming with inspiration and insights.  If you weren’t able to make it to the event, or if you just want to reflect on some of the talks you experienced that day, here are ten of the best quotes heard at TEDxDayton 2016.

1.  “Terrorism has never had a religion.”

– Salma Albezreh 

Salma Albezreh is a Muslim, a spoken word artist, an activist, and a middle-school student who gave an absolutely brilliant talk about Islamophobia at TEDxDayton this year.  

2.  “Trans people are a part of the natural spectrum of human diversity and diversity makes us all stronger.”

– Jonah Yokoyama 

Transgender advocate Jonah Yokoyama is the executive director of Heartland Trans Wellness Group and delivered an outstanding and timely talk on the spectrum of gender and issues trans people encounter when obtaining medical services.

3.  “Revolution in art is almost always evolution.”

– Joe Deer

Wright State University professor, Joe Deer, gave a thought-provoking talk on the tendency of ground breaking musicals to set a new benchmark of where society is heading.  He focused on Hamilton, a show with a diverse cast that has changed the game for popular musicals from now on.  He described Hamilton as a musical set in America’s past, with a hip hop score that sounds like America’s present, and a cast that looks like America’s future.

4.  “Being connected [to the Internet] is no longer a luxury, but a right.”

– Tyler Back

Technology entrepreneur of Mitosis Creative, Tyler Back, explained that access to the Internet is now considered internationally to be a right.  He also mentioned that we create 2.5 quintillion bites of data per day!

5.  “Keep breathing, smile, and improvise.”

– Linda Jones

Linda Jones is anorganizer and planner who uses a vintage Betty Crocker guide to entertaining to explain how to throw a party without fear and finds wisdom that is as valuable today as it was in the 1950s (even if the suggested snacks aren't exactly palatable by today's standards).  

6.  "Without purpose, success is virtually impossible."

– Robert Owens

Education consultant Robert Owens explained his three rules for success in his talk, which included having purpose, showing gratitude, and practicing self-discipline.  He uses these rules to help at risk students and has benefitted from following them himself.

7.  "You can be anyone you want to be in burlesque as long as you're entertaining."

– Cassie Guard

Owner of Femme Fatale Fitness and burlesque performer Cassie Guard delivered a memorable performance and talk at TEDxDayton this year.  She explains that sometimes the things that start out as hobbies can change your life in meaningful ways.

8.  "Time is human potential."

– Darren Kall 

Darren Kall started out as a child who would tear electronics apart to make improvements.  As an adult, his career as a user experience expert has involved making small, almost undetectable changes to products and technology we use every day to make these things faster and easier to use.

9.  "How do we prepare our kids to be global citizens without neighbors?"

– Jo'el Thomas-Jones

Activist Jo'el Thomas-Jones is a member of Neighborhoods Over Politics, a non-profit that works to build up the underserved neighborhoods in the Dayton area.  She explains that bulldozers are a virus in these urban communities – tearing down neglected properties rather than working to rebuild them.

10.  "Do the thing in front of you."

– Mother Teresa via Ambassador Tony Hall

Global hunger relief advocate Ambassador Tony Hall gave a motivating and inspirational talk about his work to end world hunger.  When he worked alongside Mother Teresa for a time, she encouraged him to do the thing in front of him rather than feel overwhelmed by the enormous need in the world.  He urged the audience to take these words to heart because if we all do the thing in front of us, there would be less suffering in the world.

One of the best quotes of the day came not from a speaker, but from Doug Fecher, CEO of Wright-Patt Credit Union - presenting sponsor of TEDxDayton.  He described TEDxDayton as a "defining event for Dayton," which sums up the event perfectly.  Dayton is most certainly defined by its curiosity, innovation, and diversity.  TEDxDayton 2017 will be the fifth year of this event in Dayton and many are already looking forward to what new insights will be presented next year.

For more information about TEDxDayton, visit their website http://www.tedxdayton.com/.  If you missed TEDxDayton, watch this space for videos of the presentations.


TEDxDayton - TEDxDayton is organized by local volunteers who gather talented storytellers to inspire attendees of these events and others around the world.

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