Nyle DiMarco, the winner of Dancing with the Stars and America’s Next Top Model, will give a talk titled “Living Out Loud with Nyle DiMarco” for Illinois State University’s Student Access and Accommodation Services.

An ambassador for the deaf community, DiMarco will address the audience at 6 p.m. Thursday, March 29, in the Brown Ballroom of the Bone Student Center. DiMarco, winner of Dancing with the Stars and America’s Next Top Model, empowers audiences to believe they can do and be anything they want in life, no matter the obstacle. The talk, part of the Illinois State University Speaker Series, is free and open to the public.

DiMarco won the mirror ball trophy on ABC’s Dancing with the Stars (season 22) and was the last model standing on The CW’s America’s Next Top Model (cycle 22). Now Nyle is winning over audiences as an influential leader and ambassador. Born into a multi-generational, deaf family, he is an honorary spokesperson for Language Equality and Acquisition for Deaf Kids (LEAD-K) and founder of the Nyle DiMarco Foundation, which works to improve the lives of deaf people around the world. DiMarco was also a creative collaborator on The ASL App, created by native deaf signers to teach conversational American Sign Language.

Recently, DiMarco was honored by The National Business Inclusion Consortium with The NBIC Hero Award for using his fame to raise the visibility for those succeeding with a disability.

With a passion for language, literacy, and advocacy within the deaf community and beyond, DiMarco shares his barrier-breaking story as a deaf man who has risen above stereotypes to take the world by storm. Believing that his deafness is “an asset rather than a limitation,” he builds a bridge between the deaf and hearing by shining a light on not only the struggles, but also the triumphs of the deaf culture. Above all, DiMarco shows audiences that with a sense of community, commitment to your goals, and belief in yourself, you can accomplish anything.

The Illinois State University Speaker Series seeks to bring innovative and enlightening speakers to the campus with the aim of providing the community with a platform to foster dialogue, cultivate enriching ideas, and continue an appreciation of learning as an active and lifelong process. All talks are free and open to the public.