It is amazing how the past can come full circle at a single speaking event! CGK President Jason Dorsey experienced this recently when he received hugs, high-fives, and a great standing ovation at his presentation for Visit Austin this December. His experience speaking for this wonderful group at the Austin Convention Center inspired a great memory from his first speech at a corporate event in downtown Austin when he was just 18 years old…
Back then, Jason was invited to speak at a business luncheon held at a large hotel in downtown Austin. He was still wearing braces, and excitedly nervous about the speech. His mom even showed up to see what this “speaking” business was all about! The talk was a big hit, he signed a lot of books, and received a free lunch—which was a plus because at the time he was completely broke! It was through this first corporate speaking experience that he got to go inside one of the big Austin hotels for the first time.
Jason would never have imagined that all these years later that he would have the honor of keynoting the Visit Austin annual meeting—for all the hotel, tourism, hospitality, music, and regional executives who make the meetings, festivals, and events possible. These are the people and the industry that have enabled his career and life adventure.
Jason has now given well over 2,000 speeches, but this one was unique because the audience was his home crowd, literally. In the audience, Jason saw neighbors, speaking clients from more than 15 years ago, one of the first professional speakers he met when he was 18 (when he didn’t know that speaking was a career option), and many community leaders he respects and admires.
In case you are unfamiliar, Visit Austin is the organization that promotes and supports all the amazing events, artists, music, food, experiences, culture, and so much more that make Austin a one-of-a-kind destination for meetings, travel, and leisure experiences.
“Visit Austin has a huge impact on Austin economically, artistically, and socially. My favorite part of the event: I got to thank all the hotel, hospitality, restaurant, event, music, and event leaders that bring so much vibrancy, joy, learning, and unique memories to Austinites and the visitors who enjoy our city every year.”
Thank you, Visit Austin, your board, and all your stakeholders who help to make Austin such a wonderful play to visit, play, laugh, learn, do business, and live. We are grateful to you, and our region is better because of you!