Eleven-year-old Orion Jean, TIME’s Kid of the Year for 2021, will be the closing keynote speaker at the 37th Annual R.T. Garcia Early Childhood Winter Conference on Saturday, January 28, 2023.
After winning the National Kindness Speech Contest, Jean used his prize money to start the “Race to Kindness” campaign, an initiative to support kindness projects in his community. His initiatives include the “Race to 500 Toys,” “Race to 100,000 Meals,” and “Race to 500,000 Books.”
Jean is the author of “A Kids Book About Leadership,” a book focused on inspiring the young and young-at-heart to develop the leader inside them. He is also the host of an upcoming podcast, “Growing up with Orion Jean,” focused on asking icons, legends, and changemakers about the one thing they wish they knew at his age.
He has been featured on “Ellen,” “Good Morning America,” “CBS Evening News,” “The Kelly Clarkson Show,” and numerous local, national, and international media outlets.
Other confirmed speakers include educational consultant Dan St. Romain and storyteller Mary Jo Huff.
The conference, which typically draws more than 1,000 attendees, will take place from 8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. on Saturday, January 28, at the Kingdom Builders’ Center (6011 W. Orem Drive, Houston, Texas 77085).