NRPA Opening General Session Featuring Cal Ripken, Jr.

Tuesday, September 24  |  9:00 a.m. - 10:30 a.m. 

Cal Ripken Jr

Baseball legend, Cal Ripken, Jr. is the keynote speaker for the 2019 NRPA Annual Conference. An inspirational speaker, Ripken, is the personification of leadership, commitment and excellence. From his own philanthropy with the Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation and his dedication to helping children around the country, Ripken showcases how individuals can give back and create new opportunities for others. One of the most popular athletes of his generation, Ripken’s example inspires audience members of all ages to achieve their own brand of success.

Baseball’s “Iron Man,” Ripken broke several professional baseball records during his 21 seasons, but none is as sacred as his consecutive-games-played record. Shattering Lou Gehrig’s streak of 2,131 games by more than 500, Ripken displayed perseverance, endurance, and an everyday work ethic that endeared him to fans, transformed him into a national icon — and some argue, even saved baseball at its darkest moment.

Founded in 2001, Ripken Baseball aims to inspire athletes through remarkable experiences. Ripken Baseball currently owns multiple Minor League Baseball teams and hosts numerous youth tournaments, camps and clinics at The Ripken Experience baseball complexes in Aberdeen, Maryland, Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, and Disney Experience, starting in 2020.  

In 2011, Ripken was named as a special envoy for the U.S. State Department, promoting teamwork and cross-cultural communication to Japan. Working with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to fulfill her mission of diplomacy and unity through sports, Ripken has among his responsibilities visiting tsunami- and earthquake-ravaged towns and running baseball camps.

Ripken is the author of numerous books on sports and parenting, and he is currently writing a children book series with ESPN Radio’s Colin Cowherd. Ripken’s autobiography The Only Way I Know is a New York Times bestseller. 


NRPA Closing General Session Featuring Haben Girma and A1 Chops

Thursday. September 26, 2019 | 4:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.

There will be a lot to soak in all week at the NRPA Annual Conference, but the Closing General Session will cap off your experience with a presentation by Haben Girma, one of the most determined and inspirational people you will ever meet, and an energetic performance by A1 Chops – a renowned drumming duo.

Haben GirmaHaben Girma

First Deafblind Graduate of Harvard Law School; Disability rights lawyer, author, and speaker.

The first Deafblind person to graduate from Harvard Law School, Haben Girma advocates for equal opportunities for people with disabilities. President Obama named her a White House Champion of Change. She received the Helen Keller Achievement Award, and a spot on the Forbes 30 Under 30 list. President Bill Clinton, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, and Chancellor Angela Merkel have all honored Haben. Haben believes disability is an opportunity for innovation. She travels the world teaching the benefits of choosing inclusion.








A1 ChopsA1 Chops

Renowned Drumming Duo from Baltimore

A1 Chops is a drumming duo from Baltimore, MD founded by Malik Perry and Timothy Fletcher. Since forming their group in 2014, they have performed for the NFL, with rapper Young Dolph and opened for rapper Tory Lanez. The duo have been on The Ellen Show three times where they showed off their drumming skills for music legend Pharrell Williams. A1 Chops received mention on singer Ciara’s Instagram for their “Level Up Challenge”, and they have an exceptional following on social media they use to influence and inspire thousands! The two rising stars also regularly visit local Baltimore schools to encourage and inspire youth to follow their dreams and make them a reality!