The 2023 TEDxUniversityofDelaware event will be held at 5 p.m. on October 6, in Mitchell Hall. The theme for this year’s event is “Hidden Lives, Amazing Stories.” We have selected eight speakers who represent UD faculty, students and alumni. Stay tuned for more details and registration!
Karli George is a senior Accounting and Management Information Systems double-major at the University of Delaware. The theatrical arts have been Karli’s passion since age 11, providing a creative refuge throughout her adolescence and an opportunity to appreciate the world around her. In addition to undertaking two successful assurance internships at BDO USA, Karli is the co-president of the Riot Act Improv Troupe, an alumna of the Blue Hen Leadership Program, and a past Undergraduate Summer Research Fellow. Karli would like to thank her family, friends, colleagues, and mentors for their unwavering support in all her endeavors. She hopes everyone is inspired to IMPROVe after listening to her talk!
Tatiana Gomez is a first-generation Colombian American, certified open-water diver, and plant-based athlete. She did a double major at the University of Delaware in International Business and Marketing with a minor in Italian. In her career, Tatiana spent her time understanding how businesses are run during her time in sales at Salesforce.com. While at Salesforce, she suffered a traumatic brain injury which made Tatiana take a step back and reflect on her life, passions, and purpose in life. As a result, she went on to found Ceres Market, a small business focused on providing a curated set of eco-friendly alternatives to items we use in our day-to-day lives that are sustainably packaged and plant-based. In an effort to make a bigger impact in the fight against climate change, Tatiana took on an additional role in helping to decarbonize people’s homes by pivoting to solar energy through her full-time employment at Sunrun. Her goal is to make a sustainable and planet-friendly lifestyle more accessible to all, especially to those in marginalized communities.
Eric Hastings is an alumnus of the University of Delaware and currently serves as the Chief Policy Advisor for the Delaware Department of Services for Children, Youth and Their Families. There, he crafts DSCYF’s legislative priorities, manages constituent needs, and coordinates internal policy for the four divisions within DSCYF.
Previously, Eric served as the Legislative Director for the Delaware House of Representatives (Majority Caucus) and the Executive Assistant to the Speaker of the House. He is a two-time Legislative Fellow for the House of Representatives Majority Caucus where he worked while earning his Master of Pubic Administration degree from the Joseph R. Biden, Jr. School of Public Policy and Administration. He also holds a B.A in Criminal Justice from UD.
As a graduate student at UD, Eric co-founded the Resident Student Organization: Make It Count Campaign in conjunction with the Biden Institute and Department of Political Communication. In just two years since inception, Make It Count became a nationally recognized voter engagement initiative through TurboVote and Democracy Works.
Eric is also the former Director of Teen and Athletic Programming at the Boys & Girls Clubs of Delaware (Western Sussex Club), where he built and nurtured beneficial programs for youth in his hometown and acted as a consultant for the organization state-wide. There, he sparked a passion for youth services and prevention that guided his public service career thus far.
Eric is a lifelong Delawarean who enjoys all the state has to offer in his free time, from surfing at the beaches, rock climbing at the Delaware Rock Gym, or hiking through the State Parks with his fiancé, Julie.
Michael Lawrence is a sought-after leadership coach and career development expert. He teaches people how to reach maximum performance levels and achieve transformational success in their careers. He believes that everyone has the potential and ability to unleash greatness within themselves. With thirty years’ leadership experience as a global corporate executive, entrepreneur, and higher education professional he has helped countless people transform their personal and professional lives. He has degrees from the University of Delaware (BS, Economics) and Georgia State University (MS, Organizational Behavior).
Monet Lewis-Timmons is an English PhD candidate and an African American Public Humanities Initiative (AAPHI) Fellow at the University of Delaware. In 2018, she received her B.A. in English and African American Studies from Emory University. Monet’s research interests include 19th and 20th Black women’s literature and personal papers with a particular focus on how Black women form their archives. Her dissertation project highlights the archive of writer, educator, and activist Alice Dunbar-Nelson (1875-1935) to understand why and how Dunbar-Nelson crafted her archive throughout her lifetime. Through curation and public speaking, Monet’s work encourages scholars, students, and community members to rethink their understanding of Black women’s history and reflect on their own archive formation.
Catherine Osinubi is a sophomore studying Management Information Systems at the University of Delaware. She is interested in the intersection of business and technology and enjoys networking and public speaking. Some of the programs she is involved with include the UD Honors College, the Delaware African Student Association, Venture On, and she serves as an Assistant VP for Women in Business, an intern for the Cultural Programming Advisory Board, and a campus representative for the NCWIT Aspirations in Computing program.
Susamma Seeley, a certified emergency manager and doctoral student working on her dissertation in disaster science and management, is also an adjunct professor in the leadership program of the Joseph R. Biden, Jr. School of Public Policy & Administration at University of Delaware. Susamma was born in Kerala, India, and raised and educated in the U.S. She is a service-connected, disabled veteran of the U.S. Army, open about her PTSD and her experience as a suicide-loss survivor.
As an educator and practitioner, Susamma specializes in crisis and disaster human services with a focus on social justice and inclusion. She is the United Nations representative for the Malankara Social Service Society, a South Indian NGO with Special Consultative Status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council and a member of Cohort XIV of the National Preparedness Leadership Initiative (NPLI) at Harvard University. Susamma currently serves on the board of 2nd Chance Living PMI, a non-profit that works to improve the lives of justice-involved women in underserved communities.
Lavar Thomas is a UD graduate alumni. He is a Co-founder of Leaders of the Free World, a non-profit organization that provides international experiences and leadership development to young Black men. Currently, Lavar is an Environmental Justice professional with the U.S Environmental Protection Agency in Washington, DC. Before this, he served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Rwanda, East Africa, addressing rural public health challenges and providing youth leadership development. Lavar is a teaching faculty member with the Global Citizenship Alliance in Salzburg Austria and recently selected as an Emerging Leader in the Atlantic Dialogues Emerging Leaders Program in Marrakesh, Morocco.