It’s about time. This past weekend was the third TEDxMileHighWomen’s conference in Denver. TEDx are independently organized conferences that follow the format of the well-known and respected TED conferences. This conference featured fabulous women of Colorado who spoke on topics ranging from saving the bees to the Black Lives Matter movement.
This year’s conference had the highest turnout of all of the MileHighWomen event with over 2,800 people in attendance. The crowded Buell Theater was packed with excited listeners, speakers and performers. In the time between speeches, there were empowering exhibits, a kickass “Girl Power” playlist and healthy snacks provided by Whole Foods.
Our emcee for the day, Lauren Casteel, took us on the journey of what it is to be empowered as a woman. She introduced speakers that pushed the audience into uncomfortable spaces, into places of laughter and often to tears. We listened to the String Quartet OCD by Loretta Notareschi and the Playground Ensemble, a touching tribute to postpartum OCD. Amal Kassar elicited a powerful response with her inspiring poetry. The day ended with Betsy Cairo telling us that she is not a feminist, that it is time to update our vocabularies and become gender equalists as well. All of the speakers reminded us of the power of women.
Caroline Araiza, a global tourism major at Colorado State University also attended the conference. “For me it was incredibly inspiring and invigorating to hear women speak from the heart about such diverse and interesting topics,”Araiza said. “A lot of the talks were very eye-opening. I always thought I was an open-minded person but hearing talks like these always remind me how much more there is to think about and know.”
Over 11 inspiring women took the stage to speak at the conference. For the second of the three sessions, the event producers simulcasted the TEDWomen conference being held simultaneously in San Francisco. Through the simulcast, we were able to listen to Alicia Garza, Opal Tometi and Patrisse Cullors, the founders of the Black Lives Matter movement.
The TEDxMileHighWomen’s conference was a beautiful joining of many inspiring women of Colorado and a chance to open minds to new ideas.
Meghan Sobel, human rights advocate
Jordan Wirfs-Brock, energy storyteller
Amal Kassir, poet and activist
Assetou Xango, performance poet
Carrie Roy, data artist
Christen Reighter, women’s rights leader
Betsy Cairo, gender equalist
Danielle Bilot, natural designer
Erica Stone, intellectual access advocate
Loretta Notareschi, composer
Teva Sienicki, impact pioneer
Lauren Y. Casteel, MC
TEDWomen Conference Speakers Simulcasted:
Alicia Garza, Black Lives Matter founder
Opal Tometi, Black Lives Matter founder
Patrisse Cullors, Black Lives Matter founder
Kimberlé Crenshaw, law professor
C. Nicole Mason, author and researcher
Miriam Zoila Pérez, activist and doula