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Keynote speaker Doc Hendley did something extraordinary when he set out to raise money and bring awareness to the world’s freshwater crisis. He has, since 2004, built up an organization that helps vulnerable areas gain access to clean water. Doc has the ability to instill hope and encourage effective transformations. His story is inspirational and touching and contains valuable lessons for any type of audience.
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Doc Hendley never set out to be a hero.
In 2004, Hendley – a small-town bartender – launched a series of wine-tasting events to raise funds for clean-water projects and to bring awareness to the world’s freshwater crisis. His intention was to donate the proceeds through traditional channels bur soon he found himself travelling to one of the world’s most dangerous hot spots: Darfur, Sudan.
In Darfur, Doc witnessed a government-sponsored genocide where the number-one weapon wasn’t bullets-it was water. With his limited funds, Doc quickly realized that building new wells at $10,000 a pop was impossible, but hiring local workers to restore a damaged well for a mere $50 each was the ideal solution.
He’d found his mission. Today, Doc and Wine to Water continue to help remote and stricken areas repair and maintain water- containment systems. He has helped improve the water situation for people in areas such as Darfur, Cambodia, Uganda, and Haiti.
Doc is a regular, rough-and-tumble guy who loves booze, music, and his Harley. Doc realized he “didn’t have to be a perfect do-gooder to actually do some good in this world.”
His book, “Wine to Water: A Bartender’s Quest to Bring Clean Water to the World” (Avery:Penguin, Jan 2012), is a compelling story of an ordinary bartender who’s changing the world through clean water.