TEDx inspires, elevates Huntsville

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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) -  Elevating and lifting ideas higher. That was the motivation behind this years TEDx Talks in Hunstsville.

Sunday's event was one of the largest turnouts, with lines to register out the door and almost every seat filled.

Innovators, thinkers, entrepreneurs and leaders came together with a common theme.

Lisa Williams is an entrepreneur herself. She was a speaker in last year's Ted Talks. This year, she was a host along side Dwight Pope. Pope also spoke at last year's event.

"What we have here is just amazing ideas, amazing things to share," Williams said.

"It's been a really interesting day," Pope added. "It's funny, because the common thread has been a matter of choice."

All 13 speakers came to share a message of their own, and they've all made a choice that led them to the TEDxHSV stage.

Don Wilcher is an electrical engineer.  After sitting through college courses with complicated learning techniques, he figured out a way to convey complex subjects to where anyone could understand them.

"It's really the new generation of engineers, scientists, technicians and artists, Wilcher said. "It's about the 'Make' connecting with students."

Stephen Black helps students make ethical choices.  He founded Impact Alabama: A Student Service Initiative; he currently serves as its President and Board Chairman.

"The challenge that continues to grow over the last 40, now 45 years, is what to do as a civilized people when, culturally speaking, we continue to fragment apart from ourselves," Black discussed.

He helped students from colleges all over Alabama help others, like impoverished kids who need their vision corrected in order to read properly. Black also organized a free online tax service for the state's poorest families, all run by college students who want to make a difference.

Niki Werkheiser also spoke at TedxHSV. She referred to herself as, "a long-time NASA nerd". She is the project manager for 3-D Printing in Zero-Gravity.  They are working to send a 3-D printer to space.

"This is where it goes from being novel, or nice to have, to being an absolute beyond the shadow of a doubt game-changer," she said.

And Kisha Freed shared a message in a unique way, she's a conscious artist. She was there to help everyone find their "inner superhero."

"See! I told you! You are a superhero, too," she said. "So, take off your cape, relax in this chair and prop your feet up. And always, always remember your super power to choose!"

These passionate speakers reminded us and 1.5 million others, of one solid thing.

"We are a town of people who are exercising their choice," he explained. "As a result of us exercising our choice, we're sort of elevating the spirit of this city."

TED stands for Technology Entertainment Design. That's something we cherish here in the Tennessee Valley.

The talks are shared every weekday for free if you want to check them out. To learn more about this year's TEDx speakers, click here.