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Executive Committee

Julianne Wurm - Founder/Curator TEDxEast
Julianne founded TEDxEast in May 2009.  She has attended TED and TEDGlobal conferences and as an educator and a writer, finds the intersection of ideas, inspiration, action and community that TED and the TEDx program offer to be a compelling experience.  Julianne is a best-selling author and published her first book in 2005.  Her second book is slated for publication in Summer 2011 and Julianne will also graduate with her doctorate from Columbia University in May 2011.  She is quite taken with learning, the social construction of knowledge and interesting people- all of which she actively engages.  Julianne travels around N. America speaking to sold out venues of educators working to innovate conceptions of learning and schooling.  Julianne is also dedicated to bikram yoga and her bicycle, in addition to her hobby-job, TEDxEast.

Marisa Farina - Sponsorship/In-kind partnerships
Ms. Fariña is the EVP/Group Publisher for Time Out North America and has been with the international company since its North American launch in 1995.  Ms. Fariña was responsible for the brand's marketing initiatives for the first 10 years of her tenure and her marketing strategies won her a Folio: Magazine's 30-Under-30-To-Watch award.  During Ms. Fariña's 15 years at Time Out, she has been responsible for launching various magazines, websites, books, services and departments in her numerous positions as Marketing Director, Publisher and finally as EVP/Group Publisher.  Beyond Ms. Fariña's work at Time Out, she sits on the Marketing Advisory Board for Food Bank For New York City, is a founding member of the Executive Committee of TEDxEast.

Connie Frances Avila - Event production
Connie is a founding member of the Executive Committee of TEDxEast.  With over two decades of marketing experience and the management of complex, high-level accounts for some of the most iconic brands and high-profile agencies, she is currently Vice President/Account Director at CO-OP branding and marketing agency in NYC.   She earned both a B.A. in Organizational Behavior and Communication and a Professional Certificate in Coaching from New York University, as well as being an Executive Coach. Connie also has a diversified set of interests  —  she loves hiking, dancing, Medieval literature, and cooking .

Vico  Sharabani - Technology
An award-winning creative-director, visual-effects artist, and producer. Vico’s portfolio includes a wide range of commercials for Fortune 500 companies such as Mercedes, Nike, and at&t, Music-videos for KanYe West, and work for Sex & The City to name a few projects.  Servicing the advertising and entertainment industries for over 20 years, Vico is heavily involved in the management of projects across creative, production and technical endeavors.

Susanna Pollack - Strategic partnerships
Susanna is responsible for creating Strategic Partnerships for TEDxEast.  Susanna comes from a 15 year career of creating partnerships within the media space, specializing in children's content, transmedia production, and international program financing.  Past and current clients include international organizations such as BBC Worldwide, Rose D'Or Festival in Lucerne Switzerland and Sandbox Summit@MIT as well as working with start-ups Massiverse and Star Farm Productions.  She is a bourgeoning “idea” junkie and is thoroughly enjoying supporting this amazing organization and meeting incredible people.  Susanna lives in Fairfield, CT with her husband and her sources of creative inspiration, son’s Isaac and Ian.

Event Committee

Lucy Ross Flores - Event production
Lucy Flores is member of the TEDxEast event committee, having collaborated with the dynamic TEDxEast team in a number of roles for the past couple of events. Passionate about the power of storytelling, Lucy works as an outreach and community screenings producer with Film Sprout, a film distribution company that develops grassroots screening campaigns for independent documentaries. In all of her projects, she looks to share stories that bring communities together, inspire new thinking and contribute to social change. She also loves Sahadi's and Hitchcock films.

Chip Carroll - Collateral execution
Chip does some graphic work for TEDx East, and Animations for TEDx. He is a 3d Info-graphic designer/animator for Thomas F. McCall Jr.’s studio in New York City. In the past Chip ran a recording studio, played in a touring band before ending up going back to school to learn 3d graphics.  To see some of the work Chip has created

Ofelia Mangen - Stage design
Ofelia Mangen is TEDxEast Ms. Miscellany—social media, November 2010 and stage design, May 2011. She is a Gates Millennium Scholar, a Steinhardt Fellow, and a doctoral candidate in Educational Communication + Technology at New York University. Ofelia has held various positions on projects for organizations such as Backlight Media Group, National Geographic, the International Center of Photography, The Raw File, Against All Odds Productions, the Moth, MediaStorm, and the Ushahidi Standby Task Force. She earned a MA in Media Ecology from New York University in 2007 and a BS in Visual Communication from Ohio University in 2004.

Sachit Gupta - Social Media
Sachit works in the IMLP program at GE Capital and manages the social media strategy for TEDxEast. Before joining the team, he graduated from Carnegie Mellon University where he co-founded TEDxCMU. In his free time, he enjoys reading, exploring New York City, watching Manchester United dominate in fútbol and spending time on Twitter at @SachitGupta.

Samantha Fair - Speaker liaison
Samantha Fair is a native New Yorker. She received her M.A. in Early Childhood Education from Teachers College, Columbia University and currently teaches preschool in Red Hook, Brooklyn. Samantha is also the campaign analyst for a non-profit fundraising consulting group. In 2009, Samantha volunteered with TEDxEast and has been hooked ever since. Samantha noodles & obsesses about gender construction in young children, the relationship between brain development & learning and of course, trashy reality TV.

Courtney Allison Horowitz - Speaker coaching
Courtney has been working, playing, and learning in New York City since the mid-90's. A former classroom teacher and school leader, Courtney has worked with children from preschool through high school in both public and private settings. Courtney's work now focuses on teacher teams and school-wide curriculum development in public middle and high schools across the city as a consultant and coach.  Courtney helped with speaker coaching for the Fall 2010 TEDxEast Conference. 

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About TEDxEast
TEDxEast seeks to develop and leverage the TED experience at a regional level, bringing together innovative thinkers to connect and discuss great ideas. TEDxEast works to share the voices of thinkers, innovaters, and performers who will delight and inspire. TEDxEast is a collaborative effort on the part of many individuals. The founding committee members Marisa Farina, Julianne Wurm and Connie Frances Avila have expanded the event and the committee as the TEDxEast community continues to grow.

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