Student Leaders and Celebrity Supporters From Around the Word to Virtually Unite at the 2020 Best Buddies Leadership Conference
More than 4,300 Student Leaders from 35 Countries to Unite for Inclusion
July 16, 2020 — Best Buddies International, a groundbreaking nonprofit founded in 1989 by Anthony K. Shriver to establish a global volunteer movement that creates opportunities for one-to-one friendships, integrated employment, leadership development and inclusive living for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD), is excited to announce its virtual 2020 Best Buddies Leadership Conference, July 16-17.
Over the past 30 years, the Best Buddies Leadership Conference (BBLC) has inspired thousands of leaders to be Best Buddies advocates and to bring about social change in their communities. BBLC is a once in a lifetime experience that unites Best Buddies leaders, volunteers, and community advocates from around the globe.
This year, more than 4,300 student leaders, 350 Best Buddies staff, and special celebrity guests including: Voices of Inclusion from Hollywood, NFL superstar Tom Brady, NBA star Andre Drummond, Broadway sensation Lea Salonga, Pop-stars Rebecca Black and Quincy Brown, Actor Jason Lewis, and Miss USA Cheslie Kryst, among others. Participants from 35 following countries, including Bolivia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Egypt, England, Greece, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Ireland, Macau, Malaysia, Mexico, Mongolia, Nigeria, Northern Ireland, Panama, Peru, Philippines, Qatar, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Serbia, South Korea, Spain, Uganda, Ukraine, and the United Arab Emirates will be attending virtually.
Conference attendees will gain knowledge to effectively take action for a common cause while discovering the importance of their leadership, influence, and responsibilities. This year, Best Buddies will be offering a virtual conference experience so that our worldwide leaders can gather, learn, and engage while safely participating in this incredible event. Using an interactive digital platform that easily engages our attendees, this virtual conference will offer opportunities to learn from professional presenters, participate in small group discussions, engage with experts, and choose from a diverse variety of education sessions that will inform, inspire, and advance their role in the disability rights movement.
“Best Buddies empowers the special abilities of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities by helping them form meaningful friendships with their peers, secure successful jobs, live independently, and feel valued by society,” said David Quilleon, Senior Vice President, Global Mission, State Development & Operations. “This global volunteer movement is all about changing the world for people with IDD and our student leaders attending Leadership Conference this weekend are the catalyst for all our programs.”
Voices of Inclusion Kickoff
July 16 @ 8:00 pm ET
Leadership Conference Training
July 17 @ 11 am–6 pm ET
Open to registered attendees only
July 17 @ 7:00 pm ET
In addition to instructional sessions and workshops, attendees will also have the opportunity to participate in many interactive activities, such as leadership development classes and roundtable sessions with global leaders, educational panels comprised of professionals engaged in the disability rights community as they connect with experienced student leaders to share tools and techniques for success.
The opening ceremonies will kick off Thursday, July 16 with Voices of Inclusion and will include a welcome address from Anthony K. Shriver, inspiring speeches and live performances from Best Buddies participants.
The weekend’s festivities will conclude at closing ceremonies and Speaker WOWcase, 7:00 p.m. on Friday, July 17. The opening and closing ceremonies will be streamed on Facebook Live!
Attendees will return from BBLC inspired, motivated and prepared to change the world!
For media inquiries (including requests for credentials):
Nicole Maddox, Director of Communications
Best Buddies International
ABOUT BEST BUDDIES INTERNATIONAL:
Best Buddies® is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to establishing a global volunteer movement that creates opportunities for one-to-one friendships, integrated employment, leadership development and inclusive living for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Founded in 1989 by Anthony K. Shriver, Best Buddies is a vibrant organization that has grown from one original chapter to nearly 3,000 elementary school, middle school, high school, and college Friendship and Promoter chapters worldwide. Today, Best Buddies programs engage participants in each of the 50 states and in 56 countries and territories, positively impacting the lives of over 1.3 million people with and without disabilities around the world. In many cases, as a result of their involvement with Best Buddies, people with intellectual and developmental disabilities secure rewarding jobs, live independently, become inspirational leaders and build lifelong friendships. For more information, please visit www.bestbuddies.org or connect with us via Facebook, Instagram or Twitter.