On a regular basis, Robyn Benincasa inspires people to live beyond expectations. In some instances, this leads to climbing Mount Kilimanjaro or creating an adventure racing team, in others, starting an independent business.
Benincasa, a CNN Hero, three-time Guinness World Record Distance Paddler and Founder of Project Athena Foundation (Survivors to Athletes!) shared her energy as keynote speaker at a reunion of 31 pioneers of their profession and a celebration for several hundred women in dentistry.
“I find it really inspiring. Everyone in the room [at events where I speak] is lucky enough to have been born at a time when there is, in essence, equal opportunity if you have the drive and the desire, and work hard. But the endurance it took [for Lucy Hobbs] to bust the system, to be that breakthrough–she saw what she wanted to do and wasn’t willing to accept anything else. That’s a great example for all of us,” said Benincasa, referencing the Project’s namesake and the first woman to earn a degree in dentistry.
“We should honor these people who, against all odds, said ‘I’m gonna do this, I’m gonna break this barrier.’ It is neat to be in a business environment where it doesn’t matter what your gender is; it matters what your skills are and what your drive is.”