12:30-2 p.m.

Opening Keynote: Handle with CARE

The number one way to mitigate/reduce the long-term impacts of trauma and adversity is through the presence of an empathetic witness. But practically, what does that look like? Through Gaelin’s 10+ years in the foster care system, he experienced complex trauma on severe levels. Nonetheless, Gaelin also experienced the transformative power of adults who were empathetic witnesses at some of his lowest moments. In this presentation, Gaelin’s goal is to equip you with inspiration and application. Utilizing his story, perspective, and the CARE acronym, Gaelin will share with you what empathetic witnessing practically looked like in his life while also sharing what you can do to live a life of empathetic witnessing for those you serve.

 

Presenter: Gaelin Elmore is a national speaker and facilitator, lived experience expert, and belonging champion. His childhood fuels his work and story. Gaelin spent over ten years of his life in the foster care system, where he experienced many forms of trauma. Despite it all, Gaelin found his life shaped by the brief experiences of belonging in some of his darkest moments.

After playing college football at the University of Minnesota and East Carolina University and receiving his bachelor’s degree, Gaelin achieved a lifelong dream when he signed an NFL contract. Very quickly, Gaelin decided that he wanted to use his life, knowledge, and experiences to help others walking similar paths. For the past five years, Gaelin has dedicated his time and career to vulnerable populations, disadvantaged communities, and youth with adverse backgrounds through service, advocacy, and speaking. When not working, Gaelin enjoys watching sports, quoting his favorite movies, and doing anything competitive. But what Gaelin enjoys most is being a husband to his wife Micaela and #GirlDad to his two daughters Laniah and Taytum