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Stubborn to Succeed

Leslie Brown

Being stubborn can be a good thing, in the form of tenacity. In the form of refusing to concede despite evidence, to the contrary; not so much.

Tenacity says, “I’m going to do it anyway” when you know in your heart of hearts that a task is achievable. What if you had no legs? Would you just sit around? That would be the easiest thing to do, however not the best for you, or the ones around you.

Spencer West was born with legs that were useless and were later amputated. Attempts to use prosthetic legs were not successful. Spencer was told he would never sit up, never be able to walk or be a functioning member of society. That didn’t stop Spencer though; in high school, he became a cheerleader.

More recently, he climbed Mount Kilimanjaro; one of many “climbs” in his life. When we get down, and think the odds are against us, look to others for inspiration. Spencer West is a great place to start.

Spencer’s journey was featured in the documentary Redefine Possible: The Story of Spencer West, which debuted at the Toronto International Film Festival in 2012. He is also the author of Standing Tall: My Journey, in which he shares his incredible story with the world.

As a global speaker, Spencer has captivated hundreds of thousands with his keynote addresses on Redefining Possible. He has appeared countless times in the media (ABC News, 60 Minutes, CTV, BBC, TMZ and CNN) and shared the stage with luminaries such as former U.S. Vice-President Al Gore, Dr. Jane Goodall, Rick Hansen, Mia Farrow, Martin Sheen and Nobel Peace Laureate Betty Williams, Martin Luther King III, Ex-President Gorbachev, General Romeo Dallaire, Justin Trudeau, JR Martinez and musicians such as Macklemore, Jason Mraz, Hedley, the Kenyan Boys Choir, Jennifer Hudson and Nelly Furtado.

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