Nov 18, 2011

Dr. David Ross gives his opening remarks Doug Burgoyne Sam Sullivan

Dr. David Ross Doug Burgoyne Sam Sullivan


Vancouver, BC, November 18, 2011 - A collection of Vancouver’s most inspiring personalities gathered at Langara College today to speak about “Leadership Inspiring Our World” at the College’s first ever TEDx event. The student-led symposium featured eight speakers, including a philanthropist, an eco-entrepreneur, marketing specialist, and a top civil servant.  

Former mayor and Paralympics Ambassador Sam Sullivan, who delivered a talk at the event, took the opportunity to speak about difficulties in Canadian civic politics on the eve of Vancouver’s mayoral election. The Langara alum said, “I do have the sense that I’m with some of the future leaders of this community, and I’m hoping to insert a few subversive ideas. This is where I learned my first lessons on leadership.”  

Sullivan went on to deliver a fascinating presentation on three issues affecting city politics: drugs, density, and democracy. He declared, “we are ready for a revolution”, citing the need for the public to embrace a sense of a true leader as having the courage to stand up for what is right, not necessarily what is popular. He said, “If you really are just going to do what the people want, then you are a coordinator – not a leader.”  

Faye Wightman, President and CEO of the Vancouver Foundation, delivered a stimulating talk on different styles of leadership in business, including her own brand of “leadership from behind.” She said, “Hire good people, encourage them, and then get out of the way so that they can do the job that you hired them to do.”  

Wightman was joined by Iain Black, the President and CEO of The Vancouver Board of Trade, who delivered his persuasive take on the realities of changing demographics and their effect on the future.  

Those also featured at the symposium included Co-founder/CEO of Nettwerk Music Group and YYoga Terry McBride, who delivered an uplifting speech on intuition and imagination in leadership, and Assistant Deputy Minister for the BC Ministry of Social Development Allison Bond, who talked about “thinking in systems” and working in public service.  

Beverly Behan, the President of Board Advisor LLC, Langara alum Ron Kubara, a global spokesman for photo-imaging giant Noritsu, and Doug Burgoyne, the Co-founder and President of sustainable moving company Frogbox, gave insightful talks on their experiences in business.  

About Langara College
Langara College, located in beautiful Vancouver, BC, Canada, provides University, Career, and Continuing Studies programs and courses to more than 23,000 students annually. The College's expansive academic breadth and depth allows students to choose their own educational path.  

About TEDx, x = independently organized event
In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection within a small group. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events are self-organized.  

About TED
TED is a non-profit organization devoted to Ideas Worth Spreading. Started as a four-day conference in California 26 years ago, TED has grown to support those world-changing ideas with multiple initiatives. At TED, the world's leading thinkers and doers are asked to give the talk of their lives in 18 minutes. Talks are then made available, free, at TED speakers have included Bill Gates, Jane Goodall, Elizabeth Gilbert, Sir Richard Branson, Benoit Mandelbrot, Philippe Starck, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Isabel Allende and former UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown. Two major TED events are held each year: the TED Conference takes place every spring in Long Beach, California (along with a parallel conference, TEDActive, in Palm Springs), and TEDGlobal is held each summer in Edinburgh, Scotland.

TED’s media initiatives include, where new TEDTalks are posted daily; the new TED Conversations, enabling broad conversations among TED fans; and the Open Translation Project, which provides subtitles and interactive transcripts as well as the ability for any TEDTalk to be translated by volunteers worldwide.

TED has established the annual TED Prize, where exceptional individuals with a wish to change the world are given the opportunity to put their wishes into action; TEDx, which offers individuals or groups a way to host local, self-organized events around the world; and the TED Fellows program, which helps world-changing innovators from around the globe become part of the TED community and, with its help, amplify the impact of their remarkable projects and activities.

Media Contact:
Annie Mullins
Communications Officer