Jacob "TEN20" Thompson
Jacob “TEN20” Thompson
Inspirational Speaker, Spoken Word and Music Artist
Jacob Thompson (TEN20) has gone from diagnosis to destiny. His childhood dream was to be a professional athlete. He would tell you that, sometimes, our dreams for our lives need to die before we can live the true dreams and purpose that we were created for. He wouldn’t only say this; he lives it every day.
In his late teens, Jacob started having trouble performing athletically at a high level. Throughout college and after graduation he had not been feeling right physically for a long time and finally decided to see a doctor. After a series of tests he was diagnosed with a rare, genetic condition known as Friedreich’s Ataxia (FA). FA causes progressive damage to the cerebral cortex, causing difficulties in balance, coordination, and energy production, leading patients into a wheelchair and a shortened life expectancy.
This diagnosis was an opportunity for Jacob to give up on his life and his faith. Instead, he chooses daily to make the most out of his situation. He uses his story and his art as a way to inspire others, helping them persevere through their challenges and find their purpose. He has spoken and shared his art for over 10,000 people and counting, and is now working on his first book.
Aside from speaking, spoken word, and hip-hop, Jacob, better known as JT, runs a high school mentoring program in Minneapolis and coaches football and basketball. He has a Master’s degree from Bethel Seminary, is married to his beautiful wife, Abigail Thompson, and together they are raising their son, Titus.
Jacob “TEN20” Thompson
"Jacob Thompson is a breath of fresh air. His deeply moving personal testimony reminds us that, while God doesn’t always change our circumstances, He is always present in them. Jacob spoke with such tenderness and authenticity. His spoken word elements added to his story and took us on a journey to realize that God meets us in our pain and brings about His glory and our growth. Jacob’s message really resonated with our students. In fact, following his chapel I had numerous students approach me to say they were touched and challenged by his words. I would recommend Jacob to any community that desires to be strengthened in their faith."
Shawn Holtgren, Ph.D.
Vice President for Student Development – Bethel University
"I have known JT for over fifteen years. He is a very gifted speaker, especially when it comes to spoken word. What makes his spoken word so impactful is his ability to be transparent and relatable with his audience. The trials in his own life have given him a unique platform for the truth that he speaks. He can relate, challenge, speak truth and bring hope to both young and old alike!"
Varsity Basketball Coach & Team Chaplain, Hope Academy
"JT is confident, engaging, and creative. I’ve always thought his lyrics are some of the most thoughtful and relevant. He has a message that the world needs to hear; it’s a message I believe in! He even wrote a special spoken word to go with the theme of my event and knocked it out of the park!"
Event Director, Pulse
"Jacob Thompson exceeded all expectations. He did a phenomenal job being real and authentic with our students. He spoke straight from the heart and was so engaging."
Head Football Coach, Mounds View High School
"I have been able to personally observe JT’s work ethic, maturity, and heart for urban youth. He has been properly trained, graduating from Bethel Seminary with a master’s degree in ministry. He is not a quitter. JT has overcome tremendous obstacles in his life and continues to be an inspiration to many. He is a godly example to young people. I have known him for four years now, and it has been an absolute joy to have JT and his family at Cityview Church."
Senior Pastor, CityView Church
"We have always looked forward to having JT at our events. He comes prepared, prayed up, rehearsed but comfortable and flexible. His spoken word, music and merch have always enhanced our events, and he is always willing to work with us to make the event the best it can be. He has a powerful story that many can relate with."
Youth Pastor, Oak Hills Church
"JT brought honesty, skill, and a presence to our event that drew in the students. I strongly recommend him as a speaker and artist. His positivity despite life's obstacles is inspiring."
Area Director, TreeHouse