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The Reluctant Leader: Kevin Challender at TEDxBozeman

Kevin Challender told the audience how he became a reluctant leader.The Montana State freshman decided to come out as gay on a YouTube video and document the process as his senior research project. "I was always in disguise and I could never be myself," Challender said. "There was this pain in my stomach and I couldn't take it." But since coming out, Challender has turned to helping those like him. He is studying psychology at?MSU with the hopes of becoming a couples counselor with an emphasis on homosexual relationships?and has created an advice blog to help other gay and lesbian teens. He urged the crowd to "take a good hard look at your life" and find ways to help others, even if it's just by talking to someone in need. "Talking made all the difference to me," Challender said.Kevin Challender is a freshman studying psychology at Montana State University. He and his twin Ryan were adopted and grew up in Bozeman where he participated in many social political activism events such as the Anti Hate rally, and equal rights rallies. He has also volunteered for many events such as AIDs awareness and the Pride Festival. In 2011, while a senior at Bozeman High School, Kevin created an "It Gets Better" video that describes his experience of coming out as a gay teen and encourages young people to have hope and not resort to suicide. Kevin hopes to obtain a PhD and continue to creatively address LGBT concerns.About TEDx, x = independently organized eventIn the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events are self-organized.* (*Subject to certain rules and regulations)
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