The people behind the curtain.

As I wrote last week, being Chair of TEDxManitoba gives me the opportunity to see the big picture of what’s going on as our crew of 30 or so organize an amazing TEDx event. Today, I wanted to give you a bit more of a peek at the people behind TEDxManitoba and share just a tiny bit of what they’re up to.

Our Guest Selection Crew led by Michelle O’Keefe ran our guest application process from OCT18 through NOV27. Now their work is cut out for them, reviewing all of the passionate answers and trying to narrow them down to the 100 who will attend. Of course, we wish every single applicant could be there in person, but TEDx has its guidelines. We’re limited to 100 guests, and so our challenge begins. Remember though, even if you can’t make it in person, we are certain to have an excellent live stream to follow along at home, at the office or at school.

Kerry Stevenson is leading the Speakers Committee. If you’ve been following along, you’ll already know that they have put together an amazing mix of Technology, Entertainment and Design, with a focus on local speakers. With its live stream component, and with all of our talks ultimately uploaded to the main TED site, TEDxManitoba gives our local speakers a platform to share their idea—and we are particularly excited to promote home grown, Manitoban passion and ideas.

The size of your wallet isn’t a good measure of your passion or ideas— and it shouldn’t be a barrier to attendance. While charging for the event would make life easier on us, we want TEDxManitoba to be free. That leaves our Sponsorship Committee and its Lead Rachelle Thibodeau, the hefty task of finding enough cash and in-kind donations to make the event happen. As you can imagine, everything costs money; our amazing venue and its labour costs, the technical crew for the live stream, the food at lunch and during breaks, hotel accommodations for out of town speakers, the photographer, printing costs for our program and marketing materials – it all adds up (quickly!). We are incredibly grateful to our Partners. They believe in what TEDxManitoba is about and want to support it. We are still covering our costs and invite any organizations who want to be a part of bringing this event to life to contact Rachelle.

Nicole Jensen is leading up our Venue Committee. Nicole and her crew had a long list of requirements for the “perfect” TEDxManitoba venue, and after investigating several options, they found us the MTC Warehouse. They are certainly in for a busy two months designing and building our set, working through the minute by minute schedule from when we get access to the MTC Warehouse right through to the morning after cleanup. They’ll be making sure the whole thing runs smoothly.

Marketing and Communications has been led by David Pensato and is now in full swing. Between blog posts, social media, branding, and event-day materials, they’ve been quite busy. On the site, they’ve been coordinating and posting our speaker profiles, posting some of our favourite TED talks (reconsidered according to this year’s theme) and keeping things up to date. And this year…we even have TEDxManitoba business cards! The marketing team will continue to keep you up to date on what we’re up to and how you can participate—even if you’re just taking in our live stream.

Our Technical Committee, aka “the Committee that takes care of anything that gets plugged in” has been working to make sure we avoid glitches and gremlins. Michael Anderson led the crew for the past six months and has since passed the torch onto venue committee member Brent Toderash to get us to the finish line. Under Michael’s direction we secured a live stream provider via a robust RFP process, found a photographer, began working with the MTC Warehouse Technical Crew and generally got our technical infrastructure well sorted out. With that work done, the focus becomes much more on integrating that infrastructure with the venue setup. Michael remains a part of the Technical Crew while Brent now leads it while remaining part of the Venue Committee. It works really well!

February 9th, 2012 is certain to be an incredible event, and it wouldn’t be possible without all of the people pulling levers and hoisting pulleys behind the curtain.

One thought on “The people behind the curtain.

  1. Pingback: Eventful time ahead | David Pensato

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