Nestor Gomez has faced a variety of mighty challenges in his life—including having to deal with a stuttering problem. He used to be afraid to speak up in public. So, when people hear he has won 66 Moth SLAMS (a storytelling contest that requires quick thinking and fast talking), they are understandably surprised! Gomez says the SLAMS force him to come up with stories under pressure.

Gomez was born in Guatemala and lived in the United States undocumented for years before becoming a citizen, so his life has provided plenty of material to draw upon.

He told his first story at a Chicago Moth SLAM and won. SLAM stories must be based on personal, real-life experiences, are required to fit an assigned theme, and must be developed in a short time before being performed in front of an audience. Through his storytelling, Nestor has learned to draw on personal experiences and speak without the stutter he’s lived with since childhood.

Gomez is also the creator, producer, curator, and host of 80 Minutes Around the World, an immigration storytelling show that features the stories of immigrants and refugees, along with those of their descendants and allies.

In 2018 and 2019, Nestor was nominated by ALTA—The Alliance of Latinx Theater Artists of Chicago, for Outstanding Solo Performance and Storyteller of the Year.

He’s written a collection of heartwarming and hilarious stories about driving for rideshare companies in Chicago entitled, Your Driver Has Arrived. One dollar from every book sold is donated to RAICES—The Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Services, or the Ascend Educational Fund, which enables students of exceptional promise to reach their full potential through higher education.

This is Nestor’s first visit to the Timpanogos Storytelling Festival and to Utah. Join us in welcoming him September 8-10, 2022, at Thanksgiving Point in Lehi.