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On Wednesday, March 4, 2020, Phoenix College proudly hosted its second annual TEDx Event.

About TEDx Phoenix College

TEDx Phoenix College’s theme for 2020 was “Traditions: Looking Forward/Looking Back".

The topic was chosen to showcase how historic customs and patterns have shaped, and continue to shape, our world. Each speaker presented unique topics, facilitating innovative conversation about tradition. Our goal was to stimulate thought, create change, and influence the greater community around us.

Please view a recording of our event, which is available on the Phoenix College YouTube Channel

About TEDx

The “x” in TEDx signifies that this is an independently organized event under the TED Talk brand, organization, and conference.

In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED Talk experience at a more intimate, community level. At a TEDx event, a TED Talk video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group setting. 

Visit TED at

Schedule of Events

6 p.m. - 6:20 p.m. - Pre-Event Check-In

6:20p.m. - 7 p.m. - Speaker Session 1

  • Welcome - Dr. Larry Johnson, President, Phoenix College
  • Orientation Norms - Rowdy Duncan
  • Video #1
  • Discussion - Julie Myers
  • Speaker #1 - Katie Hess "The Secret Language You Already Speak: Flowers"
  • Discussion - Amy MacPherson
  • Video #2

7 p.m. - 7:20 p.m. - Intermission

7:20 p.m. - 8:30 p.m. - Speaker Session 2

  • Speaker - Charles Matheus “Redefining Strength for the 21st Century”
  • Discussion - Rody Randon
  • Video #3
  • Discussion - Julie Myers
  • Speaker #3 - Colby Martin “The Forgotten Tradition of Sin”
  • Debrief - Rowdy Duncan



Learn About Our Speakers

We were pleased to feature three incredible speakers this year. Our honored guests, in no particular order, were:

Katie Hess
Katie Hess, Speaking on “The Secret Language You Already Speak: Flowers”

Katie Hess is an expert of flower alchemy, the author of Flowerevolution and founder of LOTUSWEI, a leading flower elixir apothecary. Katie created and hosts Flowerlounge events around the world, alongside the Flowerlounge Podcast, and is the founder of the Self-Arising Nature Center in Phoenix. Whether it’s hosting retreats, leading meditations, or traveling to find the planet’s most powerful flowers, the essence of Katie’s work is to awaken people to their own inner wisdom.

Charles Matheus
Charles Matheus, Speaking on “Redefining Strength for the 21st Century”

Charles Matheus is an Arizona native with thirty-five years of experience as an educator, wilderness guide, and nonprofit leader. Charles has utilized podcasting, writing, and public speaking to make an impact in society by redefining the concept of strength. He believes that what constitutes strength has shifted over thousands of years and he has developed what he calls “Four Gifts” to better define strength in our current society.

Colby Martin
Colby Martin, Speaking on “Progressive Christianity and Rethinking the Tradition of Sin”

As an author and pastor, Colby Martin is passionate about carving out a space within Christianity that includes a whole-hearted, affirming posture toward LGBTQ individuals, a broader acceptance of spiritual practices and religious perspectives, and an agreeableness toward all that science can teach. He believes that when people know their true identity (loved children of God) they can live from a place of freedom. Colby remains obstinately hopeful that the church can change the world.


For questions about TEDx Phoenix College, please contact co-organizer, Rowdy Duncan: