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William Kamkwamba

Malawian innovator, engineer, and author. Gained fame in his country when, in 2002, he built a wind turbine to power his village

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 William Kamkwamba Biography

William Kamkwamba was born August 5, 1987 in Dowa, Malawi, and grew up on his family farm in Masitala Village, Wimbe, two and half hours northeast of Malawi’s capital city. The second eldest of Trywell and Agnes Kamkwamba’s seven children, William has six sisters, Annie, Dorris, Rose, Aisha, Mayless, and Tiyamike.

William was educated at Wimbe Primary School, completing 8th grade and was then accepted to Kachokolo secondary school. Due to severe famine in 2001, his family lacked the funds to pay the $80 in annual school fees and William was forced to drop out of school a few months into his freshman year. For five years he was unable to go to school.

Starting at 14, rather than accept his fate, William started borrowing books from a small community lending library located at his former primary school. He borrowed an 8th grade American textbook, Using Energy, which depicted wind turbines on its cover. He decided to build a windmill to power his family’s home and obviate the need for kerosene, which provided only smoky, flickering, distant and expensive light after dark. First he built a prototype using a radio motor, then his initial 5-meter windmill out of a broken bicycle, tractor fan blade, old shock absorber, and blue gum trees. After hooking the windmill to a car battery for storage, William was able to power four light bulbs and charge neighbors’ mobile phones. This system was even equipped with homemade light switches and a circuit breaker made from nails, wire, and magnets. The windmill was later extended to 12 meters to better catch the wind above the trees. A third windmill pumped grey water for irrigation.

Subsequent projects have included clean water, malaria prevention, solar power and lighting for the six homes in his family compound; a deep water well with a solar powered pump for clean water, a drip irrigation system, and the outfitting of the village team Wimbe United with their first ever uniforms and shoes. Since receiving their sun and wind-themed uniforms, the team has been on a winning streak that has brought the village together with pride.

The windmill project drew many visitors from kilometers around, including Dr. Hartford Mchazime, Ph.D., the deputy director of the MTTA, the Malawian NGO responsible for the community library. Mchazime brought press, including The Malawi Daily Times, who wrote a long story. Soyapi Mumba and Mike McKay, engineers at Baobab Health Partnership in Malawi blogged about the article, and news of William’s inventions reached Emeka Okafor, program director for TEDGlobal, a prestigious gathering of thinkers and innovators. Okafor searched quite diligently to find William and invite him to the conference as a fellow. William’s presentation led to additional mentors, donors, and companies supporting his education and further projects.

William graduated from Dartmouth College in 2014 and started his tenure at Ideo.org as a Global Fellow. William's time at Ideo focused on Human Centered Design and sent him around the world working on projects ranging from sanitation in India to gender-based violence prevention in Kenya. He is now working with WiderNet to develop appropriate technology curriculum that will allow people to bridge the gap between "knowing" and "doing". WiderNet will distribute the content through eGranaries around Malawi and across the continent.

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Videos
Books
The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind: Young Readers Edition

The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind: Young Readers Edition

The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind: Picture Book Edition

The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind: Picture Book Edition

The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind: Creating Currents of Electricity and Hope (P.S.)

The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind: Creating Currents of Electricity and Hope (P.S.)

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FAQs
  • HOW TO BOOK William Kamkwamba?

    Our booking agents have successfully helped clients around the world secure talent like William Kamkwamba for speaking engagements, personal appearances, product endorsements, or corporate entertainment for over 15 years. The team at All American Entertainment represents and listens to the needs of organizations and corporations seeking to hire keynote speakers, celebrities or entertainers. Fill out a booking request form for William Kamkwamba, or call our office at 1.800.698.2536 to discuss your upcoming event. One of our experienced agents will be happy to help you get pricing information and check availability for William Kamkwamba or any other celebrity of your choice.
  • HOW MUCH DOES IT COST TO BOOK William Kamkwamba?

    Booking fees for William Kamkwamba, or any other speakers and celebrities, are determined based on a number of factors and may change without notice. Pricing often varies according to the circumstances, including the talent's schedule, market conditions, length of presentation, and the location of the event. Speaker fees listed on this website are intended to serve as a guideline only. In some cases, the actual quote may be above or below the stated range. For the most current fee to hire William Kamkwamba, please fill out the booking request form or call our office at 1.800.698.2536 to speak with an experienced booking agent.
  • WHO IS THE AGENT FOR William Kamkwamba?

    All American Entertainment has successfully secured celebrity talent like William Kamkwamba for clients worldwide for more than 15 years. As a full-service talent booking agency, we have access to virtually any speaker or celebrity in the world. Our agents are happy and able to submit an offer to the speaker or celebrity of your choice, letting you benefit from our reputation and long-standing relationships in the industry. Fill out the booking request form or call our office at 1.800.698.2536, and one of our agents will assist you to book William Kamkwamba for your next private or corporate function.
  • WHAT IS A FULL-SERVICE TALENT BOOKING AGENCY?

    All American Speakers is a "buyers agent" and exclusively represents talent buyers, meeting planners and event professionals, who are looking to secure celebrities and speakers for personal appearances, speaking engagements, corporate entertainment, public relations campaigns, commercials, or endorsements. We do not exclusively represent William Kamkwamba or claim ourselves as the exclusive booking agency, business manager, publicist, speakers bureau or management for William Kamkwamba or any other speaker or celebrity on this website. For more information on how we work and what makes us unique, please read the AAE Advantage.
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All American Entertainment (AAE) exclusively represents the interests of talent buyers, and does not claim to be the agency or management for any speaker or artist on this site. AAE is a talent booking agency for paid events only. We do not handle requests for donation of time or media requests for interviews, and cannot provide celebrity contact information.

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William Kamkwamba

Malawian innovator, engineer, and author. Gained fame in his country when, in 2002, he built a wind turbine to power his village

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William Kamkwamba Biography

William Kamkwamba was born August 5, 1987 in Dowa, Malawi, and grew up on his family farm in Masitala Village, Wimbe, two and half hours northeast of Malawi’s capital city. The second eldest of Trywell and Agnes Kamkwamba’s seven children, William has six sisters, Annie, Dorris, Rose, Aisha, Mayless, and Tiyamike.

William was educated at Wimbe Primary School, completing 8th grade and was then accepted to Kachokolo secondary school. Due to severe famine in 2001, his family lacked the funds to pay the $80 in annual school fees and William was forced to drop out of school a few months into his freshman year. For five years he was unable to go to school.

Starting at 14, rather than accept his fate, William started borrowing books from a small community lending library located at his former primary school. He borrowed an 8th grade American textbook, Using Energy, which depicted wind turbines on its cover. He decided to build a windmill to power his family’s home and obviate the need for kerosene, which provided only smoky, flickering, distant and expensive light after dark. First he built a prototype using a radio motor, then his initial 5-meter windmill out of a broken bicycle, tractor fan blade, old shock absorber, and blue gum trees. After hooking the windmill to a car battery for storage, William was able to power four light bulbs and charge neighbors’ mobile phones. This system was even equipped with homemade light switches and a circuit breaker made from nails, wire, and magnets. The windmill was later extended to 12 meters to better catch the wind above the trees. A third windmill pumped grey water for irrigation.

Subsequent projects have included clean water, malaria prevention, solar power and lighting for the six homes in his family compound; a deep water well with a solar powered pump for clean water, a drip irrigation system, and the outfitting of the village team Wimbe United with their first ever uniforms and shoes. Since receiving their sun and wind-themed uniforms, the team has been on a winning streak that has brought the village together with pride.

The windmill project drew many visitors from kilometers around, including Dr. Hartford Mchazime, Ph.D., the deputy director of the MTTA, the Malawian NGO responsible for the community library. Mchazime brought press, including The Malawi Daily Times, who wrote a long story. Soyapi Mumba and Mike McKay, engineers at Baobab Health Partnership in Malawi blogged about the article, and news of William’s inventions reached Emeka Okafor, program director for TEDGlobal, a prestigious gathering of thinkers and innovators. Okafor searched quite diligently to find William and invite him to the conference as a fellow. William’s presentation led to additional mentors, donors, and companies supporting his education and further projects.

William graduated from Dartmouth College in 2014 and started his tenure at Ideo.org as a Global Fellow. William's time at Ideo focused on Human Centered Design and sent him around the world working on projects ranging from sanitation in India to gender-based violence prevention in Kenya. He is now working with WiderNet to develop appropriate technology curriculum that will allow people to bridge the gap between "knowing" and "doing". WiderNet will distribute the content through eGranaries around Malawi and across the continent.

William Kamkwamba Videos

  • William Kamkwamba: How I built a windmill
    http://www.ted.com When he was just 14 years old, Malawian inventor William Kamkwamba built his family an electricity-generating windmill from spare...
  • Moving Windmills: The William Kamkwamba story - YouTube
  • William Kamkwamba: 'How I Harnessed the Wind' (TED Talks, 2009 ...

William Kamkwamba Books

FAQs on booking William Kamkwamba

  • How to book William Kamkwamba?

    Our booking agents have successfully helped clients around the world secure talent like William Kamkwamba for speaking engagements, personal appearances, product endorsements, or corporate entertainment for over 15 years. The team at All American Entertainment represents and listens to the needs of organizations and corporations seeking to hire keynote speakers, celebrities or entertainers. Fill out a booking request form for William Kamkwamba, or call our office at 1.800.698.2536 to discuss your upcoming event. One of our experienced agents will be happy to help you get pricing information and check availability for William Kamkwamba or any other celebrity of your choice.
  • How much does it cost to book William Kamkwamba?

    Booking fees for William Kamkwamba, or any other speakers and celebrities, are determined based on a number of factors and may change without notice. Pricing often varies according to the circumstances, including the talent's schedule, market conditions, length of presentation, and the location of the event. Speaker fees listed on this website are intended to serve as a guideline only. In some cases, the actual quote may be above or below the stated range. For the most current fee to hire William Kamkwamba, please fill out the booking request form or call our office at 1.800.698.2536 to speak with an experienced booking agent.
  • Who is the agent for William Kamkwamba?

    All American Entertainment has successfully secured celebrity talent like William Kamkwamba for clients worldwide for more than 15 years. As a full-service talent booking agency, we have access to virtually any speaker or celebrity in the world. Our agents are happy and able to submit an offer to the speaker or celebrity of your choice, letting you benefit from our reputation and long-standing relationships in the industry. Fill out the booking request form or call our office at 1.800.698.2536, and one of our agents will assist you to book William Kamkwamba for your next private or corporate function.
  • What is a full-service talent booking agency?

    All American Speakers is a "buyers agent" and exclusively represents talent buyers, meeting planners and event professionals, who are looking to secure celebrities and speakers for personal appearances, speaking engagements, corporate entertainment, public relations campaigns, commercials, or endorsements. We do not exclusively represent William Kamkwamba or claim ourselves as the exclusive booking agency, business manager, publicist, speakers bureau or management for William Kamkwamba or any other speaker or celebrity on this website. For more information on how we work and what makes us unique, please read the AAE Advantage.

William Kamkwamba is a keynote speaker and industry expert who speaks on a wide range of topics . The estimated speaking fee range to book William Kamkwamba for your event is $20,000 - $30,000. William Kamkwamba generally travels from San Francisco, CA, USA and can be booked for (private) corporate events, personal appearances, keynote speeches, or other performances. Similar motivational celebrity speakers are Guy Kawasaki, Seth Godin, Max Levchin, Martin Seligman and Dean Kamen. Contact All American Speakers for ratings, reviews, videos and information on scheduling William Kamkwamba for an upcoming event.

William Kamkwamba Speaker Videos

  • William Kamkwamba: How I built a windmill
    http://www.ted.com When he was just 14 years old, Malawian inventor William Kamkwamba built his family an electricity-generating windmill from spare parts, working from rough plans he found in a...
    Moving Windmills: The William Kamkwamba story - YouTube
  • William Kamkwamba: 'How I Harnessed the Wind' (TED Talks, 2009 ...

William Kamkwamba News

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Speakers Similar to William Kamkwamba

This website is a resource for event professionals and strives to provide the most comprehensive catalog of thought leaders and industry experts to consider for speaking engagements. A listing or profile on this website does not imply an agency affiliation or endorsement by the talent.

All American Entertainment (AAE) exclusively represents the interests of talent buyers, and does not claim to be the agency or management for any speaker or artist on this site. AAE is a talent booking agency for paid events only. We do not handle requests for donation of time or media requests for interviews, and cannot provide celebrity contact information.

If you are the talent, and wish to request removal from this catalog or report an issue with your profile, please click here.

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