Speaker Spotlight: Eddie Ndopu
It is difficult to describe the full spectrum of all that EDDIE NDOPU encompasses. He describes himself as a queer, Black, disabled individual, fighting for social equity and the environment. He’s a renowned disability justice practitioner; on the board of Imagine, an organization helping businesses contribute net positively to the environment and social justice issues; a member of the United Nations Sustained Development Goal committee; Founder of A Billion Reasons in partnership with the World Economic Forum; and now writing his first book, a memoir, titled “Sipping Dom Perignon Through a Straw.” He has thrived in the face of a diagnosis of spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) at two years old, at which time his family was told he only had a few years left to live. As an adult living a full, purpose-driven life, Ndopu inspires us to reach beyond the limitations others may see in us and live boldly and joyously.
Ndopu always receives rave reviews after his speaking events, such as Facebook who called him “the most extraordinary speaker,” Amazon who shared that he was “mind-blowingly amazing,” at Salesforce’s Dreamforce event he was described as “one of the most powerful voices on the planet right now,” Discovery Health called him “a paradigm shift,” and he’s spoken at the COP26 Climate Change Summit, Davos for the World Economic Forum, the GlobalCitizen Summit, and elsewhere. He’s been called “an icon in the making” by President Barack Obama and “one of the most gifted speakers in the world” by Her Highness Sheikha Moza bint Nasser. Ndopu is an animated, dynamic speaker audiences never forget.
Eddie Ndopu (pronounced en-dough-poo) is an award-winning, internationally acclaimed humanitarian, storyteller, public intellectual, and disability justice practitioner. In recognition of Eddie’s influence as a global changemaker, Antonio Guterres, the current Secretary-General of the United Nations, recently appointed him as one of the UN’s official Advocates for the 17 Sustainable Development Goals.
Eddie is the Founder of A BILLION REASONS, a groundbreaking social impact incubator established in partnership with the World Economic Forum to tackle the Sustainable Development Goals through the lens of universal design and disability-based innovation.
Eddie sits on the Boards of IMAGINE and The Valuable 500. He also serves as a member of the World Economic Forum’s Global Future Council for Social Justice, and Verizon’s high-level Advisory Board for Disability and Accessibility.
An African Leadership Academy alumnus, Eddie made history in 2017 by becoming the first disabled Black man to graduate from Oxford with a Masters Degree in Public Policy. He also graduated summa cum laude from Carleton University, with a Bachelors in Human Rights.
Eddie is currently working on his debut memoir, Sipping Dom Perignon Through a Straw.