Circle Leaders are at the heart of CUSA’s work, and centering our 2023 Leadership Conference around the voices of those with lived experiences of poverty is vital. To that end, Circles USA invites Circle Leaders, past or present, to share their stories, testimonials, and messages of inspiration in the form of mini-keynote talks. You can submit yours via video recording, or—for the adventurous spirits in our network—we welcome in-person talks at our leadership conference in Orlando, FL from October 16-19! Your mini-keynote should be 10 minutes or under.

Looking for inspiration? Share how the Circles experience has: 

  • changed your knowledge or perspective of poverty/prosperity, 
  • improved your skills, 
  • helped you reach your personal goals, or 
  • empowered you to share your unique voice. 

Bonus points for using our 2023 theme: Deepening and Expanding!

CUSA is offering $100 gift cards for each recording that we select OR free conference registration if delivered live and in-person at our October event.

To apply, please share a draft* of your video with Kamatara ( by August 31, 2023.

* ”Draft” quality is using your cell phone to share your talk—no concerns about the background, lighting, or audio quality, as long as we can see and hear you. If you are selected, then we may ask you to re-record your talk to improve production quality. We can provide tips to help you record your video to best effect.

What makes a great mini-keynote?

A sincere, engaging talk should be:

  • Natural – Use your own rhythm and language, and don’t be afraid to keep it simple.
  • Concise – This is the “mini” part! Submissions over 10 minutes will not be considered, so use your time wisely.
  • Thoughtful – Take a few moments to reflect on your genuine feelings, ideas, and memories of your CUSA journey. Sometimes big change shows up in tiny ways, so dig deep and remember that we aren’t looking for tales of miraculous wealth and Instagram-worthy perfection. We just want you to speak from your heart. 

Each year, our Lives Transformed featured Circle Leaders embody this courage and vulnerability by sharing unforgettable testimonials of their Circles journeys. Check out their stories in written form; or listen to Yakilin, April, Ashon, and Pam recount their experiences in our new suite of short videos.

Still making plans for our 2023 Leadership Conference? Register today, or contact Administrative Coordinator Gena Atcher at for more information.