Surfaces 2011 general session speaker named

HomeNewsSurfaces 2011 general session speaker named

DALLAS—Though the economy seems to be gaining momentum, it is still quite unpredictable, causing industry professionals to reassess how they will meet goals and over- come obstacles. With this in mind, Surfaces and StonExpo/Marmomacc Americas 2011, which will take place at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center from Tuesday to Thursday, Jan. 25 to 27, in Las Vegas, has named mountain climber and author Aron Ralston as its opening speaker at the show’s general session.

Scheduled for Tuesday, Jan. 25, from 8:30 a.m. to 10 a.m., the session will feature a compelling message delivered by Ralston, author of the New York Times best-selling book, “Between a Rock and a Hard Place,” focusing on perseverance, goal-attaining and overcoming adversity.

In 2003, while on a solo rock-climbing excursion, Ralston found himself literally caught “between a rock and a hard place” when his right arm became pinned to a canyon wall by an 800-pound dislodged boulder. Ralston, a mechanical engineer turned professional outdoorsman, survived for five days with little food and less than a liter of water.

Once he realized his fate would be sealed without taking a drastic course of action, he self-amputated his crushed arm to free himself, repelled down a 65-foot face of a cliff and hiked several miles out of the canyon to his awaiting truck, a stick-shift no less.

At the movies

Ralston’s extreme story will be retold by Oscar-winning director Danny Boyle of “Slumdog Millionaire” fame in his film adaptation of Ralston’s book. The film, “127 Hours,” will be released in late 2010.

“Many of us feel we are, or have been, ‘between a rock and a hard place’ the last couple years,” said Gary Distelhorst, executive vice president and CEO of Marble Institute of America (MIA). “His story is a lesson everyone can learn from as we emerge from the worst recession to hit our businesses in recent memory.

For more on Surfaces and StonExpo/Marmomacc Americas, call 800.624.6880.

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