Category Archives: Perfomances

Leila Chirayath Janah to Speak on “Ending Poverty in the Digital Age” at TEDx Silicon Valley

The aid industry, ranging from multilateral banks and financial institutions to large NGOs, has come under fire for pumping billions into fragile economies in poor countries with few results. Despite this surge in aid, many of the world’s poor are worse off than they were 20 years ago. 1.4 billion people get by on less than $1 a day in income. At the same time, human capacity is expanding dramatically — the world has seen a surge in literacy and public schooling, and a reduction in infant mortality and premature death.

In this context, the world’s poorest people don’t need our good intentions — they need new ways to earn money.

TEDxSV speaker Leila Chirayath Janah will describe her experiences becoming a social entrepreneur and her vision of changing the world with greater access to dignified work. She will present research and stories on how the aid industry has created a culture of handouts, and how the Internet can help end poverty by expanding economic opportunity.

Janah followed an unusual path; at age 16, she used a scholarship from the Lorillard Tobacco Company to move to Ghana and teach English in a rural school.

After 10 years navigating the development industry as a consultant to NGOs and at the World Bank, Janah founded Samasource, a nonprofit that connects women, youth, and refugees to digital work. Samasource began with an initial investment of $35K, a couple of sympathetic friends with couches, and heaps of “Jugaad” (a Hindi term for doing more with less, MacGyver-style).

In just over a year, Samasource has provided work benefiting over 550 people through innovative uses of technology. The company’s “Give Work” iPhone application, launched in partnership with CrowdFlower, was hailed as “one of the best and most useful iPhone applications around today” by Mashable.

Here how Leila Chirayath Janah became interested in socially responsible outsourcing and why she set up shop in the Bay Area

TEDx Silcion Vallety Annouces Robert Strong the Magician to Perform at TEDxSV!

TEDx Silicon Valley’s last and final announcement is very special guest and magician Robert Strong who will be doing a special performance for TEDxSV!

Robert has been crisscrossing the world since 1985 entertaining audiences large and small, young and old, formal and casual, and everything in between! Recently voted “San Francisco’s Funniest Prop Comedian,” “The Bay Area’s Best Performer,” and “San Francisco’s Best Comedian,” Robert has appeared on CBS This Morning, performed for the United States Congress, and taken his act to more than 30 different countries. Although Robert specializes as a corporate entertainer, he regularly appears at a broad range of events: Corporate trainings, business retreats, trade shows, conventions, conferences, product launches, sales seminars, awards ceremonies, banquets & galas, cruise ships, colleges & universities, comedy clubs, festivals, theaters, private parties, political events, non-profit organizations, and much more.

No two Robert Strong shows are ever the same! He believes in creating a unique theatrical experience for each audience that is both interactive and simply magical. Robert’s contagious enthusiasm and engaging charisma invariably leave audiences buzzing with excitement and with memories that will last a lifetime!

Sekou Andrews to Preform at TEDx Silicon Valley

Motivational Poet & Strategic Presenter Sekou Andrews is inspiring the business world one poem at a time with The Sekou Effect. As an award-winning and internationally acclaimed spoken word artist, playwright, actor and musician, Sekou has mastered the art and business of creating original, custom-written spoken word pieces that electrify the messages and accelerate the missions of corporations and non-profits worldwide. Sekou does not inspire you with his story, he inspires you with your story.

An ex-elementary schoolteacher turned national poetry slam champion, any given day may now find Sekou presenting an original piece for European marketing executives, giving a keynote speech at a healthcare conference, or presenting passionate poems for Barack Obama at a party in Oprah’s backyard. His work has been featured on such diverse media outlets as ABC, MSNBC, HBO, Showtime, MTV and BET, and he has performed privately for such prominent individuals as Quincy Jones, Maya Angelou, Norman Lear, Hillary Clinton, P-Diddy, and Coretta Scott King and family. Companies that have experienced “The Sekou Effect” include Kraft Foods, Kaiser Permanente, Nike, Time Warner, eBay, Microsoft, ACLU, Waggener Edstrom Worldwide, Wieden-Kennedy, NBA, Eliza Corp, Global Green, NCAA, and Ferrazzi Greenlight to name but a few.

With inspired audiences from the HBO US Comedy Arts to The Pasadena Pops Orchestra under his belt, Sekou is now emerging as a powerful voice for healthcare, routinely evoking tears, cheers, and standing ovations at multiple cutting edge conferences, including TEDMED, IHI Forum, Big Task Weekend, and Health 2.0. With impressive versatility, and inspiring insightfulness, Sekou Andrews is a powerful storyteller telling your powerful your stories.


Victor Tsaran to Speak at TEDx Silicon Valley

TEDxSV is excited to announce  Victor Tsaran to preform and speak at TEDx Silicon Valley!

Victor will be speaking about his journey from making brushes to making music and playing with computers. Oftentimes, when we talk about innovation and social change, we rarely include or consider the needs of certain large segments of the society, e.g. people with disabilities, of whom there are approximately 650 millions around the world. While we do believe in numbers and readily trust statistics to justify our business decisions, we just as readily close our eyes to the opportunities presented by this unexplored audience of contemporary and demanding consumers.

Victor is one of the most amazing people I have ever met. He grew up in a Ukrainian orphanage and is now a talented computer engineer in the U.S. He’s an accomplished musician and songwriter. And he also happens to be blind. Victor runs Yahoo!’s accessibility program and he made it his mission to educate our designers and engineers, helping change their assumptions that accessibility somehow requires sacrifice or compromise.