November 28-30 · Palm Springs, CA


Pat Mitchell

Curator, connector, convener and advocate for women's leadership
Pat Mitchell is a lifelong advocate for women and girls, known for her work as a journalist, producer, television executive and curator.

Pat Mitchell began her media career in print (at LOOK) and transitioned to television as opportunities opened up for women in the early 1970s. She was among the first women to anchor the news (WBZ-TV Boston) and host a morning talk show (Woman 74). She was the first woman to own, produce and host a national talk show, the Emmy-winning Woman to Woman, which also became the first television series to be placed in the archives of the Harvard-Radcliffe Schlesinger Library on the History of Women.

As the head of Ted Turner's documentary division, the programs she commissioned garnered 37 Emmys, five Peabodys and two Academy Award nominations. In 2000, she became the first woman President and CEO of the Public Broadcasting System. She led PBS through the transition to digital broadcasting, sustained government funding and added many new original series to the national schedule. As head of the Paley Center for Media in New York and Los Angeles, she guided an institution that leads discussion about the cultural, creative and social significance of media. Now as an independent consultant and curator, Mitchell advises foundations and corporations on issues of women’s empowerment and leadership development as well as media relations and governance. Mitchell is a trustee of the Skoll Foundation and Participant Media; chair of the Sundance Institute Board and Women's Media Center and a board member of the Acumen Fund.

In 2010, Mitchell launched and co-hosted the first TEDWomen and for the succeeding seven years, in partnership with the TED organization, Mitchell has curated and hosted TEDxWomen and TEDWomen conferences.


Kelly Stoetzel

Experience creator
As TED's Head of Conferences, Kelly works with her team to create an experience that connects participants deeply to ideas and to each other.
At TED, Kelly Stoetzel provides leadership and strategic guidance around all pieces of the conference experience, beginning with registration and extending to the stage programming, covering all the elements in between. She also serves as a member of TED's executive leadership team.

Prior to this role (and for most of her 14 years at TED) Kelly was TED’s Content Director, assembling speaker programming for TED events and working with the speakers to develop their talks.

Before TED, she was the Director of Mixed Greens, a contemporary art gallery with the goal of making contemporary art a little more accessible. Most of her career before that was spent in the art world in one way or another (aside from a stint producing multimedia presentations of demonstrative evidence for courtroom trials), but the job that had probably the most influence on who she is and how she works today was camp counselor.

Hank Willis Thomas

Hank Willis Thomas is a conceptual artist working primarily with themes related to identity, history and popular culture.

Hank Willis Thomas's work has been exhibited throughout the U.S. and abroad including, the International Center of Photography, Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, Musée du quai Branly, and the Cleveland Museum of Art. His work is in numerous public collections including the Museum of Modern Art New York, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Brooklyn Museum, the High Museum of Art and the National Gallery of Art in Washington DC, among others.

Thomas's collaborative projects include Question Bridge: Black MalesIn Search Of The Truth (The Truth Booth), and For Freedoms. For Freedoms was recently awarded the 2017 ICP Infinity Award for New Media and Online Platform. Thomas is also the recipient of the 2017 Soros Equality Fellowship and the 2017 AIMIA | AGO Photography Prize. Current exhibitions include Prospect 4: The Lotus in Spite of the Swamp in New Orleans and All Things Being Equal at Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa. In 2017, Thomas also unveiled his permanent public artwork "Love Over Rules" in San Francisco and "All Power to All People" in Opa Locka, Florida. Thomas is a member of the Public Design Commission for the City of New York. He received a BFA in Photography and Africana studies from New York University and an MFA/MA in Photography and Visual Criticism from the California College of Arts. He has also received honorary doctorates from the Maryland Institute of Art and the Institute for Doctoral Studies in the Visual Arts. He lives and works in New York City.


Helen Walters

Helen Walters is the head of curation at TED, where she has the immense privilege of overseeing the work of an absurdly talented group of specialist curators and deep thinkers to bring the very sharpest minds and ideas to the TED stage.
Helen Walters first attended TED in Monterey in 2008. Back then, she came as a journalist, reporting on the ideas and speakers as the editor of innovation and design at BusinessWeek. Later, she came in-house to help write and produce TED's own coverage of the conference. Later still, in 2013, she went all in and joined the organization full-time, first as the ideas editor, launching and running TED's ideas blog, then as editorial director, working to help translate stage talks into wildly successful online videos, and now helping speakers at all major TED events. She also serves as a meber of TED's leadership team.

In her previous life as a writer and editor, she wrote about everything from high technology to low culture, including writing one book on experimental animation and three books (yes, really) on T-shirt graphics. She still likes nothing more than to talk to interesting people about the ideas that fuel them, and that's why she argues that hers is essentially the best job in the world. ×

Deb Willis

Curator, photographer
Deb Willis is a photographer and writer in search of beauty.

As an author and curator, Deb Willis's pioneering research has focused on cultural histories envisioning the black body, women and gender. She is a celebrated photographer, acclaimed historian of photography, MacArthur and Guggenheim Fellow, and University Professor and Chair of the Department of Photography & Imaging at the Tisch School of the Arts at New York University.

Willis received the NAACP Image Award in 2014 for her co-authored book Envisioning Emancipation: Black Americans and the End of Slavery (with Barbara Krauthamer) and in 2015 for the documentary Through a Lens Darkly, inspired by her book Reflections in Black: A History of Black Photographers 1840 to the Present.   ·   @drdebwillis ×

Manoush Zomorodi

Tech podcaster
Every week on her podcast "Note to Self," Manoush Zomorodi searches for answers to life’s digital quandaries.

Manoush Zomorodi is the host and managing editor of Note to Self, “the tech show about being human,” from WNYC Studios. Through experiments and conversations with listeners and experts, she examines the new questions tech has brought into our lives. Topics include information overload, digital clutter, sexting “scandals" and the eavesdropping capabilities of our gadgets.

In January 2017, Manoush and Note to Self launched "The Privacy Paradox," a 5-part plan to help people take back control over their digital identity. Tens of thousands of listeners have completed the 5-part plan so far, which Fast Company calls Manoush's "challenge to us to stick up for our internet rights." Her book exploring how boredom can ignite original thinking, Bored and Brilliant: Rediscovering the Lost Art of Spacing Out, comes out in September 2017.   ·   @manoushz ×
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