Memories of Ken Low

When Rahim Sajan and Jonathan Perkins met at a Leadership Calgary/Human Venture book club event in 2009, little did we know that it would result in a collaboration and deep friendship of more than 14 years. 

Both of us were proud graduates of the Leadership Calgary program led by Ken Low and his Action Studies Institute, which later would morph into the Human Venture team.

Ken's wisdom had a profound influence on each of our outlooks, as it probably has had for most of the graduates of Ken's various programs. Although Jonathan and Rahim came from different program years separated by almost a half decade, the common thread of Ken's frameworks provided an instant language for our intellectual connection. It also inspired us to use the TEDx platform to share wisdom like Ken's with others across our community. That journey has spanned more than a decade and involved more than 150 speakers and tens of thousands of people who have attended our events or watched the talks online.

Ken appeared on our stage twice over the last decade.

His first appearance was at our Humanity 3.0: Leadership The World Needs Now event in April 2010. Anyone who knows Ken would chuckle knowingly at his initial reluctance to try and distill any part of his wisdom down to the mere 18 minutes (maximum) that we give to any speaker under the TED/TEDx formula. Yet Ken rose to the challenge, and his talk led us to the realization that talks like this are meant simply to be trailheads on a bigger journey of exploration.

His second appearance was at our 2017 Origins Salon, where he was able to move the needle once again, reflecting on the evolution of his research and his teaching style over the intervening years. In both cases, we know that Ken influenced the outlooks of many people who saw the talks, and his reach has gone into the thousands with the talk views via the TEDx YouTube channel.

We hpoe that Ken's wisdom and passion for learning will continue to spread, both through the ongoing efforts of those at the Human Venture team, and hopefully through the ongoing sharing of his ideas via the talks we recorded.