The original inspiration for TEDxLivermore came out of a year-long Livermore Leadership Seminar in 2011-2012. Rosalind Hamar, then Head of School at Valley Montessori School, was a participant in the Seminar and thought it would be a wonderful undertaking if a small group could institute a TEDx project that would highlight and explore “ideas worth sharing” from the Tri-Valley area. Others agreed and more talented people were drawn to the idea and so TEDxLivermore was born.
The first TEDxLivermore conference focused on the theme: Innovate+Educate! Our licensee was Dominique Piotet, long time TED aficionado and CEO of Rebellion Labs. The event was held at Las Positas College in the Mertes Center for the Performing Arts and attracted over 250 people. Other lead members of our amazing team included Dale Kaye, CEO of the Livermore Chamber of Commerce and Innovation Tri-Valley, Kennan Salinero, Founder and Director of Yamana Science & Technology, Stacy Drury, Michele Block, Margaret Drechsel, Jill Miller, Caren Holmes and Tonya Clenney. Lead sponsors included Fremont Bank, Courtyard Marriott Livermore, and Workday. TEDxLivermore 2013 was so successful that the team decided we should definitely do another one.
For TEDxLivermore 2014 we selected a theme that reflected two of the foundations of the Livermore region – viticulture and high technology. We invited people to join us to “Uncork your Creativity!” We also chose, for licensing reasons, a smaller and more intimate setting, the Black Box Theater at Las Positas. Our audience was sold out at 100! The original team led the way planning the event, most of our sponsors continued to support our work and a few new ones were added, most notably East Bay Community Foundation and i-Gate/City of Livermore. We also chose to add a design lab to the program to actually engage our group in creative problem solving! Again, we hosted a very successful event that inspired us to keep going.
In March 2015 three TEDxLivermore team leaders attended TED Active in Vancouver BC and came back doubly committed and excited about all that we could do to expand the footprint of our conference. Our first added event was a day-long live screening of TEDxWomen in May at i-Gate! This event drew a crowd of dynamic women who are already engaged in creative and leadership work in our area. Breaks in the day allowed us to take inspiration from the speakers and commit to action we would take in our own work and lives to further the role and work of women!