2020 GMIS MEETS Keynote Speaker
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Ben Franklin & His Civic Contributions

Brian Patrick Mulligan a.k.a. Benjamin Franklin!

Seasoned television actor Brian Patrick Mulligan is considered to be the country's premiere Benjamin Franklin impersonator. Based in Philadelphia, he has performed in 38 of our 50 states. As "Ben", he has appeared on Jimmy Kimmel Live, The Jay Leno Show, The Game Show Network, Disney's "Kickin' It", Comedy Central's "Workaholics", as well as numerous documentaries & commercials. He is happily celebrating his 30th year portraying Dr. Franklin and honored to speak to GMIS MEETS!

In this keynote, Dr. Franklin will share his many civic contributions, which include improvements on the city of Philadelphia by forming the first hospital, the first volunteer fire department, the first Post Office, and the first lending library. His contributions to science are remarkable! He will reminisce about his first invention of swimming fins at the age of eleven, along with many of his other inventions, including bifocals, the odometer, the Franklin Stove and the Lightning Rod. Ben will also explore his contributions toward the Revolutionary War when he served as the first Ambassador to France.

Philadelphia's favorite Founding Father will deliver all of these topics with his celebrated humor, insightful wisdom, and classic wit! You will leave inspired to continue your own contributions to society as a government IT leader.

DING Happens! How to Quickly Make the Most of Whatever Life Throws at You!

Avish Parashar

Avish grew up in "exotic" Poughkeepsie, NY and now makes his home in Philadelphia, PA. Though he performed all through high school, he decided to stop performing when he went to college to “focus on his studies” (his parents were very proud of this decision).

That resolve lasted only a few months, as the first time he saw an improv comedy show he fell in love (his parents were slightly less proud). One week later he auditioned for the campus improv group, got in, and the rest is history. After graduating, he started Polywumpus Improv Comedy, which performed regularly in and around Philadelphia for seven years. Avish closed up Polywumpus to focus on the speaking and training side of the business – using improv comedy as a tool to teach valuable business skills such as creativity, innovation, and adaptability.

Weaving together humorous stories, jokes, audience interaction, and improv comedy games, Avish keeps the audience engaged while imparting a key lesson: Planning is Important, but Improvising is Essential! No matter how well you plan, things will go wrong, surprises will arise, and the Universe will throw you a curveball. Your success and sanity are directly related to how you respond these challenges. By the end of one of Avish's presentations you will have key tools to flow with all that life throws at you. Avish has spoken to the very creative (actors and directors), the very un-creative (accountants), the very casual (college students), and the very business-like (sales professionals). The end result is always the same - smiles, laughs, and a new way of looking at life and business.

Avish is the author of "Improvise to Success!" and the Amazon best-selling, "Say 'Yes, And!'" (And yes, his parents are once again very proud.)

No matter how well you plan, things will go wrong, unexpected surprises will appear, and the universe will throw you a curve ball. Your level of success is often dictated not by how well you plan, but rather by how quickly and effectively you deal with the unexpected when it happens (and it will!)

In this energetic, fun, motivational, and interactive speech, Avish will demonstrate how the same principles that lead to hilarity on an improv comedy stage can lead to massive success in life. He will cover vital points to help you flow with the unexpected, deal with change, and be more effective.

You will learn how to:
  1. Have fun in the face of adversity (and why this is a critical business skill)
  2. React instantly and powerfully by only controlling the controllable
  3. Simply say "Yes, And" instead of "Yes, But" to instantly improve communication, flexibility, and personal success

Thank you to our 2020 GMIS MEETS Sponsors

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