Ignite Ann Arbor seeks passionate speakers for fast-paced presentations

Local nonprofit A2Geeks is seeking speakers for the 11th Ignite Ann Arbor, which will feature local experts giving fast-paced presentations on a broad range of topics they're passionate about.


Speakers must apply by Sept. 30 to present at the Nov. 2 event at the Ann Arbor District Library's (AADL) downtown location. Ignite events are held across the globe, but always with the same two limitations – presentations cannot exceed five minutes and must include 20 slides auto-rotating every 15 seconds.


"It's a vehicle to get some good public speaking experience," says Ryan Burns, an A2Geeks board member and Ignite Ann Arbor founder. "We partner with Toastmasters and we let the speakers do a run-through (before the event) and get positive feedback."


Ignite Ann Arbor began in 2009 when Burns moved from Chicago to Ann Arbor. He had seen videos of Ignite talks online from around the world and saw Ignite as a good fit for the community.


In past years, speakers have presented on a variety of topics, from commuting to entrepreneurship. As long as politics, religion, and sales pitches are avoided, the subject can be anything the speaker chooses.


A2Geeks' call for applications says the organization is looking for "looking for people we don’t know, people who don’t look like us, don’t act like us, don’t think like us." Burns says he remembers an 11-year-old girl who presented a few years ago about a newspaper she created for her neighborhood.


"It's amazing to see all the different people that live in Ann Arbor that come out of the woodwork," Burns says.


For more information and to sign up, visit A2Geeks' website. A2Geeks will choose 15-16 speakers by Oct. 4. Ignite Ann Arbor will take place on Nov. 2 at 7 p.m. in AADL's lobby.

Emily Benda is a freelance writer based in Ann Arbor. You can contact her at emily@emilybenda.com.

Photo courtesy of A2Geeks.
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