TEDx: It Takes a Village

Getting Down to Business with the OPRF Chamber

Share on Facebook
Share on Twitter

By Cathy Yen

Executive Director OPRF Chamber of Commerce

I was on hand last week when Dan Haley, Editor and Publisher of the Wednesday Journal, had to change a light bulb.  Before you even ask, the answer is seven.

But it reminds me of how many people contribute to a successful undertaking.

This past week, I gave a TEDx talk at the Nineteenth Century Club in Oak Park.  It was a dream come true, lots of work and a challenging process.  I spoke about "outrage" and how it has the power to destroy our community – but also has the power to change the world for the better, when channeled appropriately.  Thrilled to report that it was favorably received.

Just like the light bulb joke, my TEDx talk resulted from many people.  It may have been me on stage, but I had loads of help.

TEDxOakParkWomen is powered by volunteers committed to creating a local TED experience.  Thank you to leaders Tania Haig and Janna Fiester and the countless volunteers who procured sponsors, arranged for production, helped the speakers and took care of all the little details.  Huge shout out to the sponsors (too many to list; find them at tedxoakparkwoment.com) who made the event possible.

My own preparations involved people across the Village.  Countless friends and colleagues offered feedback on early drafts.  I especially appreciate the Huskie Wrestling Family (and that wrestling credo of "you're great, now get better!"), my Chamber team who gave me insightful comments, Team Blonde and Nora's Shoes who outfitted me, Constance and Kevin Barker who helped me get in shape, my New Jersey family who constantly texted inspiration and my dear friends Kim, Adrienne, Mary, Dawn, Tammie and Lisa who kept me authentic.

Finally, thanks to my family.  Erin traveled in from Columbus to help edit, Chris provided constant encouragement and Scott stood by me through the three months of prep work.

Most importantly, I want to give a nod to the people who inspired my talk.  I spoke about outrage and how incredibly hard-working, diligent people are ostracized for speaking out on controversial issues.  You know who you are.  Thank you for working so hard to make our community a better place.


Email: cyen@oprfchamber.org Twitter: @OPRFChamber

Love the Journal?

Become our partner in independent community journalism

Thanks for turning to Wednesday Journal and OakPark.com. We love our thousands of digital-only readers. Now though we're asking you to partner up in paying for our reporters and photographers who report this news. It had to happen, right?

On the plus side, we're giving you a simple way, and a better reason, to join in. We're now a non-profit -- Growing Community Media -- so your donation is tax deductible. And signing up for a monthly donation, or making a one-time donation, is fast and easy.

No threats from us. The news will be here. No paywalls or article countdowns. We're counting on an exquisite mix of civic enlightenment and mild shaming. Sort of like public radio.

Claim your bragging rights. Become a digital member.

Donate Now

Reader Comments

No Comments - Add Your Comment

Note: This page requires you to login with Facebook to comment.

Comment Policy

Facebook Connect

Answer Book 2019

To view the full print edition of the Wednesday Journal 2019 Answer Book, please click here.

Quick Links

Sign-up to get the latest news updates for Oak Park and River Forest.

MultimediaContact us
Submit Letter To The Editor
Place a Classified Ad

Classified Ad

Latest Comments