On July 20, 2012, Tom and Caren Teves’ firstborn son, Alex, was murdered in the Aurora theater shooting while heroically shielding his girlfriend from gunfire. In the days immediately following his murder, they founded NoNotoriety, a movement dedicated to reducing rampage mass murders by limiting the name and face of the killers in the media. They also founded the Alexander C. Teves ACT-Foundation.org to provide funding for scholarships, mentor programs, and opportunities for students with special needs. He lives in Arizona & works for Compass Group.

What was the biggest turning point in your life, and why?

    When my son was murdered in the Aurora Theatre shooting, it completely changed my life and my family’s life — unfortunately not for the better. Alex, at the age of 24, had to make the split-second decision to either save himself or his girlfriend. He chose to save her, but lost his life by doing so. No one at that young age should have to be forced to make that type of decision whilst enjoying a movie. The loss of a family member is traumatic to say the least, but when it is something as unnatural as a child that makes it exponentially worse.

    It has been extremely difficult to overcome the fact that it was all due to someone wanting to become infamous by harming the wellbeing of others. Toward that end, our organization — which was founded upon Alex’s death — has worked to dramatically reduce the notoriety that these murderers seek in an attempt to eliminate the motivation that drives the majority of them to perform these horrible acts.

      What are three hobbies / passions/ fun facts about you?

        1. Growing up I was an avid water skier
        2. I have a 16-year-old dog that looks exactly like Benji and today most people still think she is a puppy
        3. I can type 60 words a minute which has helped me on many fronts in this digital age.

      What’s a piece of advice that you live by?

      Stop and make sure that the people you love know that you love them. And as hard as it is to do, try to work to live — not live to work. I can’t say I always have or still follow that advice, but I know it is critical. Life moves too fast, it can change in an instant and once it does, most of the time, you can’t go back and fix it, so enjoy what makes you happy and don’t take it for granted.

      See Tom Speak at TEDxMileHigh: Imagine

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