Our 2016 theme is 'Breaking Barriers.’ TEDxTownsville 2016 is about overcoming all obstacles and shining a light on what is holding our community back. This year we will look forward to ideas about rising from the ashes, tackling difficulties, turning problems into catalysts and breaking the barriers to creating, innovating and changing for the better.
Dr Joann Lukins spends her day inside the heads of individuals, teams and organisations – seeking to understand what makes them tick and assisting them to reach their potential. A psychological Indiana Jones, she describes it as a truly fascinating career that she reflects upon and is grateful for every day. She holds a PhD in Psychology, has over 25 years experience, and a breadth of knowledge in the sport, organizational and educational domains. She has worked with elite athletes and outstanding professionals throughout her career, giving her a unique insight into the world of success. Dr Lukins is sought after as a presenter, interventionist and for her opinion in the media space. Knowing that she has made a difference in the lives of others is the ‘why’ of her work and the most satisfying element of her career. When not at work she most appreciates time with her family, is Personal Assistant to her two rascal sons and occasionally splashes about at the pool, rides her bike, takes photographs, and reads the odd book.
Andrea has enjoyed a diverse business and senior management career. She has owned and operated small businesses, worked as a Project Director with Lend Lease and held economic and business development roles with non-government organisations. She is currently a business adviser with AiGroup and a creative strategist. Andrea is on a mission to help small businesses become more innovative. She is fascinated by neuroscience, creativity and all things innovative. Andrea spends much of her spare time researching her favourite topics to better understand how creative insights happen and how we can foster a thriving, innovative small business culture.
Chris Quin is committed to enabling communities to prepare for and recover from natural disasters, and ensuring that critical infrastructures society needs are available rapidly after disaster impact. Chris holds a Masters in Disaster Preparedness and Reconstruction, is a Certified Practicing Project Director with the Australian Institute of Project Management, works as a Project Sponsor for Queensland’s electricity distributor, and is a Deputy Group Leader with the Townsville / Thuringowa State Emergency Service. Chris has responded to emergencies and disasters such as cyclones, severe storms, flooding, search and rescue, bomb evacuations, and getting three young children to school on time.
Karen Weynberg is a Postdoctoral Researcher based in Townsville, Queensland, specialising in marine virology with 12 years’ experience researching viruses in the oceans. Karen was awarded a PhD from the University of Warwick, U.K., in 2009, for which she researched viruses that infect tiny oceanic plants called phytoplankton. In 2011, Karen joined the Australian Institute of Marine Science (AIMS) in Townsville, as an Australian Research Council Super Science Fellow. Her research has begun to reveal the roles viruses play in coral health, coral bleaching and the adaptation of corals to climate change. Karen is the proud mum of three amazing teenage children and enjoys exploring Far North Queensland with them, when she isn’t pursuing her passion for viruses on the Great Barrier Reef.
Kris is in his final year of a BA in International Relations with a BSc in Geography at Macquarie University. He is curious about people and wants to understand the ways we interact with each other around the world. Kris wants to find the answers to questions like; what impact public spaces have on our behaviour? Why do we fear what we don’t understand? How do we design cities to encourage trust and social well being? Having studied abroad in India, France and the Czech Republic where he has gathered observations about how culture is created, Kris sees that the world is moving away from nationhood and that we need to learn the power we can muster when we work for diversity. Kris is keen to contribute to the world in a way that celebrates intercultural community building through education, planning and innovation.
Dr Connar McShane was born and raised on a family farm in North Queensland. Her passion for improving the quality of life of farming families became the focal point of her Psychology Honours research thesis. From there Connar was hooked and in 2012 completed her PhD in Psychology exploring the unique work dynamics of the family farm. Connar’s research and community engagement interests have continued along this path working with farmers, industry and regional development groups to identify determinants of and strategies to enhance social and economic growth within rural farming communities.
Dr Adam Smith is passionate about sustainability of our blue planet and particularly the oceans. From a young age he has been fascinated with fish, sharks, coral reefs and humans relationship with our oceans. Adam is an expert free diver, scientist and environmental manager. As Director of Reef Ecologic Pty Ltd, Adam participates in underwater survey, consults communities, and provides trusted expert advice and training on reef management issues and solutions. Adam’s personal leadership vision is to share knowledge to empower people to protect and restore the health of the reef. He will share an embryonic idea for a Reef Revolution.
Fiona Quin is a computer programmer, registered teacher, writer, and mum to three wonderful children. Fiona has worked in the Information Technology industry as a computer programmer and test quality engineer, a Teacher in both High School and Primary School settings, and is currently the owner/operator of Stories Galore where she runs both adult and kids workshops. Fiona holds a Bachelor of Science with Honours in Computer Science and a Bachelor of Education. Fiona aims to develop creativity, imagination, problem-solving, and design skills in people through combining literacy and information technology. She is an advocate of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) education and how we can show kids and adults the fun that can be had with STEM projects.
Trisha was born in and spent the first sixteen years of her life in India. As a little girl, Trisha was always burdened by the stark differences in living standards between the ‘rich’ and ‘poor’ and the ill treatment of the most vulnerable in society. This burden only grew as she became more aware of the world and its many problems until finally, she decided to leave India in search of answers. Armed with the desire to understand the world and the determination to develop the knowledge and skills needed to be a part of the solution, she came to Australia in 2004. Trisha is passionate about culture, education, freedom and equality. She is also passionate about finding smart, inclusive, culturally sensitive and sustainable answers to big issues such as gender inequality, poverty, education and exploitation. It was in pursuit of these goals that she began studying Economics at James Cook University, a decision that continually challenges her and broadens her mind. She hopes to further her studies in sociocultural anthropology and governance in order to better equip herself to make a positive impact on the Australian and worldwide community.
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