TEDxNewport has announced the speaker line-up and details for its event on Saturday, November 5th at the historic Jane Pickens Theater, 49 Touro St., from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m EST.

The independently organized event, licensed by TED, will feature 13 local voices as well as TED Talk videos under the theme “Tides of Change”. The presentations will explore changes, patterns, and forward-thinking ideas that are present in Newport.

“Newport has always received attention for its storied history, it’s lively guests, its unrivaled sunsets and its natural beauty. However, it’s also a place of great innovation, spirited entrepreneurship, and ceaseless creativity,” said Alyssa Bottone, TEDxNewport Licensee and Organizer. “We want to highlight the brilliant ideas of our friends and neighbors, encourage conversation and debate, promote further discovery, and share our distinctive identity with the world”.

Launched in 2009, TEDx is program of locally organized events that bring the community together to share a TED-like experience. Some of the best talks from TEDx events have gone on to be featured on TED.com and garnered millions of views from audiences across the globe.

“More than 60 people applied or were nominated to speak at the first TEDxNewport and it’s been a refreshing challenge to select speakers amongst such a diverse group of contenders. Proposals covered a diverse range of topics including transportation, environmental protection, hospitality, health and wellness, artistic expression, and social and civil equality,” said Bottone.

In alphabetical order, those invited to speak at TEDxNewport 2016 are;

  1. Sam Birger
  2. Jim Egan
  3. Steve Heath
  4. Kelly Kittel
  5. Valerie Larkin
  6. Kate & Amanda Leese
  7. Dave McLaughlin
  8. Jim Mullowney
  9. Rupert Nesbitt
  10. Sean O’Callaghan
  11. Christopher Reeves
  12. Steve Sabo
  13. Onne van der Wal

“Our subsidiary license from TED states that our live audience cannot not exceed 100 people during our first event. As a result, the event will be invitation only. However, community live-streaming options will be available; please email tedxnpt@gmail.com if you’re interested in hosting a viewing gathering at a non-commercial venue. We’re happy to help extend the reach of this event however we can,” said Bottone.

The TEDxNewport team will be streaming the event to at least one centrally located venue. Information about how to connect to the livestream will be available at www.tedxnewport.com.

Necessary information on how to tune into the webcast, as well as details on the livestream venues are expected to be available on the website by October 14th.

Organizers invite the public to follow TEDxNewport on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter for updates and more information.

TEDxNewport sponsors include: DIF Design, Drupal Connect, Newport Biodiesel, Newport County Development Council, The Fitzpatrick Group and Towerhill Associates.

Businesses and individuals interested in becoming a partner or making a tax-deductible donation to support the event, should visit www.tedxnewport.com.


Full Disclosure: Ryan Belmore and Jillian Tullgren from the What’sUpNewp Crew both volunteer their time on the TEDxNewport committee and are working on this event.

Ryan Belmore is the Owner and Publisher of What'sUpNewp. 
Belmore has been involved with What’sUpNewp since shortly after its launch in 2012, proudly leading it to be named Best Local News Blog in Rhode Island by Rhode Island Monthly readers in 2018, 2019, and 2020 and an honorable mention in the Common Good Awards in 2021.

Born and raised in Rhode Island, Belmore graduated from Coventry High School and the Community College of Rhode Island. In addition to living in Newport for 10 years, he has lived in Portsmouth, Coventry, Providence, Smithfield, Burrillville, and East Greenwich.

Belmore currently serves as Vice President of the Board Of Directors for Fort Adams Trust and on the Board of Directors for Potter League For Animals. He previously served on the Board of Lucy's Hearth and the Arts & Cultural Alliance for Newport County.

Belmore and his wife, Jen, currently live in Alexandria, Virginia, a move they made in 2021. Read more about that here - https://whatsupnewp.com/2021/09/letter-from-the-publisher-some-personal-news/

Belmore visits Newport every couple of weeks to support the 12+ paid contributors What'sUpNewp has on the ground across Rhode Island, a place he called home for 39 years.

Belmore is a member of Local Independent Online News (LION) Publishers, Society of Professional Journalists, and the North American Snowsports Journalists Association.

In 2020, Belmore was named Member of the Year by LION and won the Arts & Cultural Alliance of Newport County's Dominque Award.
Belmore can be contacted at ryan@whatsupnewp.com and 401-662-1653.