Sometimes if you want a big name to come to your conference, you just gotta ask.
That’s what the organizers of the fifth annual Chatham-Kent Nonprofit Network conference did, and they were able to land TEDTalk guru Dan Pallotta to speak at their event on April 25 at the John D. Bradley Centre.
“He is basically the rock star of the not-for-profit world,” laughed Laurie Langford, the Chatham-Kent Nonprofit Network co-ordinator. “We are his only Canadian stop this year.”
Pallotta is an activist, humanitarian, author and builder of movements.
His iconic TEDTalk on philanthropy has been viewed more than 4.3-million times and is one of the 20 most-commented TEDTalks of all time.
The American invented the multi-day charitable event industry, including the Breast Cancer 3-Day walks and the multi-day AIDS Rides long-distance cycling journeys, which have raised more than $500 million in nine years and were the subject of a Harvard Business School case study.
He has been covered extensively by the media and is the author of Uncharitable: How Restraints on Nonprofits Undermine Their Potential.
Langford said Pallotta doesn’t say yes to every request, noting he wanted an explanation of what they were doing at the conference, because he wants to be with a group of people who will receive his message well and be supportive.
She explained Chatham-Kent is a municipality made up of about 550 non-profits that, often, can’t afford to bring a big conference to the community. She added Pallotta coming would also attract a lot of other quality presenters.
“As soon as we had him, we had everybody falling in line right behind him,” Langford said.
“Strengthening our Roots” is the theme of the conference.
Langford said one focus of the conference will be “examining our current structures and figuring out how we’re going to dig deeper and make things work better.
“Rather than stretching ourselves thin, let’s concentrate on what our core business is, strengthen our roots, let’s be here for the long haul, and how can we do that,” she added.
Langford said the conference is filling up, noting tickets are $225 if purchased before March 25. After that, the price will be $325.
She said the conference is being limited to 400 people so there is room for people to freely move around.
Tickets and more information is available online at CKNNConference.ca or by calling Langford at 519-354-0430 ext. 245.