Ajit George has had an interesting career.
He worked in tourism for 25 years as the managing director of Nail Bay Resort in the sunny British Virgin Islands. After that, it was marketing and business development for Strongpoint in Delaware. Way back in 1980 he led member services for public broadcaster WHYY.
But for the past five years he’s spent a lot of time bringing a wealth of thought-leaders to Delaware. He’s the organizer of TEDxWilmington.
George sees it as a “chance to live an unboring life.” On that front, he seems to be an expert.
For a TEDx of its size, George’s output seems to be quite prolific. TEDxWilmington events take place at the Wilmington Public Library, A.I. DuPont Hospital and World Cafe Live at the Queen. They routinely involve many community partners.
Why does he do it?
“I do it because at age 62 I meet the most interesting people in the world and I get to show them off,” George said in an interview. “There’s no other way I would have met these amazing people with amazing people in Wilmington. People who are famous, and ordinary people who would’ve had no chance to showcase their ideas.”
On the speaking side, George says the process is fairly rigorous. Out of every four speakers, the TEDxWilmington team accepts only one. The formula? “We have a ratio of roughly 50 percent local speakers and the rest come from out of town,” George said. This gives local thought-leaders — some of which are first-time speakers coached by George and his team of volunteers — the chance to network with big names from out of town.
“I draw attention to the city,” George said. “It puts us on the world map as thought-leaders.”
George will be hosting another TEDxWilmington event called “Information is Power” during Delaware Innovation Week 2016 presented by 1313 Innovation. The “ideas worth spreading” start flowing Nov. 17 at 10 a.m. at the Wilmington Public Library. Entry is free, but it’s limited to the first 100 applicants.
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