One of my favorite parts about being an Ignite Denver organizer is getting to know all of the speakers. While I love Ignite Denver events, my favorite part is actually the run throughs before the event. It’s there that we get to know our speakers a little better and we form an eclectic little community, if only for a few weeks.

Everybody helps everyone out. We all give each other feedback and lean on one another for guidance. It’s a thing of beauty.

For this Ignite Denver, I wanted to give you just the littlest peep into the people that I get to meet as an organizer. You’ll see them all on stage on Friday night (if you haven’t purchased tickets yet, you really should get on that), but here, you can find out more about them, their lives, their passions and, of course, their contact information should you want to hit them up.

Aurora Arlet: The Creativity Crisis: Why we need more sandboxes and less Xboxes

As an accomplished communications professional at Edelman PR, with more than a decade of expertise developing and executing all aspects of public outreach campaigns, Aurora is on top of all the industry trends and knows exactly where her clients will be successful. Aurora is a member of Edelman’s corporate and technology team and has worked with an extensive list of technology and clean tech companies and organizations.

Paula Stephens: How A Recycling Program Lead To My Discovery Of An Unidentified Stage of Grief

Paula has her masters degree in exercise physiology and teaches part time at Metro State University. Through the loss of her oldest son in 2010 Paula realized the need to use her experience in Wellness to change the way we recovery from grief. She developed Crazy Good Grief which recognizes that we can’t simply move on from loss, but we can simply move.

Mary Kuehner: You’re not OCD, you’re just anal retentive

Mary has been a children’s librarian for almost 16 years. She plays a little ukulele, harbors a grumpy three-legged cat, and knows a lot about how to get little kids to love books and reading (it mostly involves making a fool of yourself). None of this has anything to do with what she’s going to talk about at Ignite, and yet she is still MADE OF AWESOME.

Aaron Templer: When good things happen to good people

Aaron (AT) is a self-employed marketing consultant. He hits drums, too. Some call him The Gora Dhol Wallah: The White Dhol (a drum from North India) Guy/Player. Connect with him on social media via either Twitter or Facebook.

Keith Hagen: Clarity trumps Persuasion.

Keith, of Conversion IQ, knows nothing about improving websites, and its taken 16 years of trying to realize it.  But he does gain insight into what is and isn’t working for site visitors, and then makes and tests site optimizations.  He’s worked on over 1500 sites the past couple of years.

Scott Rohrig: Humanize Yourself

Scott’s not intimidated by large crowds and includes people, relationships, social media and connecting with like-minded individuals a few of his favorite things.  He is a passionate dad and husband and lover of backpacking, skiing, soccer, scotch and fun people, but not necessarily in that order.

Nathan Hildreth: Flow ain’t just the Aunt of unwelcomed visits!

Prior to co-founding Fluo Apparel, Nathan played a significant role in the cannabis movement for four years.  Before this he was directing communications for a congressional candidate, and going back 12 years further, Nathan launched his professional career in real estate development, which led to him starting his own real estate company.  Follow the man and the brand on Facebook and Twitter.

Erik Wolf: Marketing & Testicles: They Have More In Common Than You Think

Erik Wolf is the founder of ORBTR.net, the first marketing automation suite for WordPress. He’s been a marketer, consultant, creative director and designer for more than 18 years and has written two books about small business marketing.

Khalana Gocken: Nature Is Our Weapon

Khalana grew up on a small farm along the northern Front Range. She is the founder of Ethos Landscape & Design where she leads a team that is passionate about sustainability. In her spare time she can be found in her garden teaching her kids weedy plant ID (and pulling techniques).

Jeff Macco: What if colleges were treated like a business?

Jeff is a serial entrepreneur and the founder of SeedPaths, which teaches young adults the professional and technical skills required to gain meaningful employment in the IT industry. Appointed by Governor Hickenlooper, Jeff is a member of the Colorado Workforce Development Council, which exists to create a business-focused workforce system that effectively helps to prepare Coloradans for the jobs of today and tomorrow.

Natalie Plowman: The Art of Puppy-Raising

Natalie is a high school English teacher who spent her first three years of teaching in Turkey, and self-published a book with stories and photos from her first year of travels. She’s also takes and sells photos in here “spare” time. She also maintains a hiking blog for predominantly dog-friendly hikes around Colorado.

Pete WinterScheidtShitty meeting syndrome, your office has it, here is how to fix it.

Pete is an enthusiastic software engineer for ReadyTalk, an audio and web conferencing provider. He is keen on leveraging technology so you can enjoy more time outside. When not in the office you can find Pete playing lawn games or working on an Alfa Romeo.

I’m just pleased as punch with the diversity of our group and the all out smarty pants that I’ve been able to hang out with for the past few weeks. I highly suggest you find them and say hi on Friday night.