It’s almost here! TEDxNashville 2017 is just weeks away and our team is busy behind the scenes, preparing for what we are proud to consider a world-class event. So many dedicated team members have given their time and talents to pull it off, but of course, the focus and anticipation revolves around our list of brilliant 2017 speakers!

Judge Sheila Calloway is one such speaker. She was elected Juvenile Court Judge in August, 2014, and also serves as Adjunct Professor at Vanderbilt University, both in the Undergraduate and Law Schools. Recently, Judge Calloway took some time to answer some questions from the TEDxNashville Blog staff.

“I never thought I would have the opportunity to participate as a [TEDxNashville] speaker myself,” she told us. “So, when I got the call, I jumped at the opportunity.”

We wondered what was going through her mind. It’s an exciting stage and audience members have high expectations. “I was very excited and a bit overwhelmed,” said Calloway. “Knowing the caliber of the TEDx speakers and the crowds that attend the shows, I began to wonder if I would be able to present something at the same level.”

Given that sentiment, and without revealing too much ahead of the event, we wanted to know what inspired Judge Calloway with enough passion to present on the TEDxNashville stage. Her topic? “Restorative Justice.”

“I want more people to understand the importance of the need to restructure our justice system, especially the juvenile justice system,” she explained, and evidently, that’s what drew her to TED Talks before. “I’ve seen a few on educating youth which truly inspired me. They inspired me because of the topic and they way the speakers did their presentation…very dynamic.”


Our questions for Judge Calloway weren’t all business. She also had some good suggestions for attendees coming from out of town. “There are so many great places around town now,” she said. “I would definitely get some “real” barbecue from Martin’s. I would try out Pinewood Social as well. I would also recommend the Gerst Haus for some genuine German food.”

This will be both Judge Calloway’s first presentation on the TEDxNashville stage, but also the first time she has ever been to a live TED or TEDx event.

So thank you and welcome to the family, Judge Calloway. We are excited to hear more from one of Nashville’s finest!