2015 TEDxKC Power Rankings

This was my second year attending TEDxKC the theme this year was REIMAGINE, and it did not disappoint. All the talks were great but the three that made the biggest impression on me were the following:

  1. Tommy Caldwell

el capitan

Tommy kept me on the edge of my seat, hanging onto ever last word he spoke. From his story of being held hostage in Kyrgyzstan and pushing his captor off a ledge in order to survive, to dedicating over half a decade to studying and finally free climbing Dawn Wall of El Captain in Yosemite National Park.

His talk reminded me what true grit is really about.


2. Martin Pistourius


Martin developed locked-in syndrome at 12 where he began losing voluntary motor control and eventually fell into a coma for three years. He began regaining consciousness around age 16, unfortunately Martin could not inform anyone that had become conscious again and was trapped in his own body. The story was very tense and sad in the beginning, but turned inspirational in the end.

Martin’s talk was given through a speech synthesis, the audience only saw his facial expressions.

3. Terri Trespicio


Terri was the first speaker of the night, when she began I wasn’t sure if I was watching stand up comedy or a ted talks, (which is a good thing). During her talk she iterated that we should not turn down opportunities because we are waiting out for something better. What I got from Terri’s talk was to throw yourself through ever door and she also gave one of the best quotes of the night.

“You don’t follow your passion, your passions follow you.” She mocks the idea of finding a passion and dedicating ones life to that subject. As we change our passions change too.


Below is my favorite TEDxKC talk from 2014, I may be a bit biased though.

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