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Storyteller - Keynote Speakers

Peggy Holtman

Margaret (Peggy) Holtman has over 20 years of experience as a leader and developer of leaders in a variety of organizations. She is co-author of Leading at the Edge: Leadership Lessons from the Extraordinary Saga of Shackleton’s Antarctic Expedition, which describes the use of adventure, story, and metaphor (Metaventure® approach) to teach leadership in organizations. The central story is the 1914-16 trans-Antarctic expedition led by Sir Earnest Shackleton, and Peggy's compelling presentation uses actual photographs, drawings, and journal entries from the journey. The audience will feel like they are a part of the crew as the gripping narrative becomes the departure point for an intense and unforgettable experience. In addition to this thrilling adventure story, Peggy shares the ten key strategies for success that emerge as the valuable lessons from Shackleton’s ill-fated voyage. The captain’s approach to leadership, teamwork, and change under extreme conditions provide a compass for today’s leaders. An engaging speaker on the many challenging aspects of leadership, Peggy also draws from her extensive background and years of leadership experience to teach your audience how to bring out the best in themselves and their teams.

Carey Lohrenz

As the first female F-14 Tomcat Fighter Pilot in the U.S. Navy, Carey Lohrenz is used to working in fast moving, dynamic environments, where inconsistent execution can generate catastrophic results. She is a powerhouse in the field of delivering engaging Leadership, High Performing Organizations and Diversity Training that directly impacts a company's ROI. In her motivating and engaging presentations, Carey shares the story of her journey to the cockpit along with her fascinating experiences operating in one of the world's most challenging environments. She is uniquely qualified in the fundamentals of winning under pressure, reducing errors and overcoming obstacles. Her mastery of these fundamentals can help your team triumph in this high-risk, time crunched world and feel inspired to move to higher levels of performance. She uses the processes of Planning, Briefing, Debriefing and Adjusting to help businesses manage risk while becoming High Performing Organizations. In October 2014, Lohrenz released her book, Fearless Leadership: High-Performance Lessons from the Flight Deck. Lohrenz provides bottom-line expertise, clear takeaway items, and an ability to connect with the audience to make her a highly sought after speaker.

Calvin Trillin

Trillin Calvin is acclaimed in fields of writing that are remarkably diverse. He has published pieces in The New Yorker for forty years and his wry commentary on the American scene and his comic novels have earned him renown as "a classic American humorist." His books include three comic novels (most recently, "Tepper Isn't Going Out") and a collection of short stories, a travel book and an account of the desegregation of the University of Georgia. Three of his antic books on eating "American Fried", "Alice, Let's Eat" and "Third Helpings" were compiled in 1994 into a single volume called "The Tummy Trilogy". He lectures widely and has appeared often as a guest on such television programs as "Good Morning America", "The Today Show" and "Latenight with David Letterman". He has written and presented two one man shows at the American Palace Theatre in New York- both of them critically acclaimed and sell-out. In reviewing the second show, The New York Times called Trillin "the Buster Keaton of performance humorists".

Kate Adamson

Author and speaker Kate Adamson shares her unique perspective on the relationship between healthy habits and survival from the most acute medical crisis. Kate recovered from a serious stroke, including a period of hospitalization during which she suffered total paralysis, also known as Locked-in Syndrome. Only able to blink her eyes, she managed to communicate messages through a system of blinking the alphabet, which allowed her to set up a rehabilitation program that almost everyone thought would be impossible. Kate used her training, determination, and persistence to do the impossible. Partially paralyzed as a result of her stroke, Kate has developed her own unique capabilities and has discovered and proven that "paralyzed" does not have to mean "powerless." Kate’s experience will fascinate and inform anyone involved with health care. Her incredible pre-morbid level of fitness and health allowed her to survive one-in-a-million odds. She learned how your health can work for you even in the most severe medical crisis.

Les Brown

As a renowned professional speaker, author and television personality, Les Brown has risen to national prominence by delivering a high energy message which tells people how to shake off mediocrity and live up to their greatness. It is a message Les Brown has learned from his own life and one he is helping others apply to their lives. Les Brown's passion to learn and his hunger to realize greatness in himself and others, ultimately helped him to achieve greatness. He rose from a hip-talkin morning DJ to broadcast manager; from community activist to community leader; from political commentator to three-term legislator; and from a banquet and nightclub emcee to premier keynote speaker. In 1989, Les Brown was the recipient of the National Speakers Association's highest honor: The Council of Peers Award of Excellence (CPAE). In addition, he was selected one of the World's Top Five Speakers for 1992 by Toastmasters International and was a recipient of the Golden Gavel Award. Les Brown is one of the nation's leading authorities in understanding and stimulating human potential. Utilizing powerful delivery and newly emerging insights, Les' customized presentation will teach, inspire, and channel your audience to new levels of achievement.

Jim Abbott

Famed baseball pitcher Jim Abbott uses his past experience of battling the odds to be an inspirational motivational speaker. Born with only one hand, Jim had to adapt to his own style of baseball in order to play. With his determination he was able to exceed by winning the Sullivan Award in 1987; was the pitcher for the Gold Medal Olympic Team in 1988; and threw a 4-0 no-hitter for the New York Yankees versus Cleveland in 1993. Through his stories and anecdotes Jim motivates people with his ADAPT acronym to relate to every type of audience. Jim inspires people to overcome adversity and limitations so they can reach their dreams.

Allan Karl

Allan Karl is a world traveler, adventurer, photographer, author, entrepreneur, and inspirational keynote speaker. He is also a principal of Clearcloud, a digital marketing consultancy that offers brand reengineering and communication and digital marketing communication. With the story of his three-year journey around the world alone on a motorcycle, he inspires people to pursue dreams, overcome challenges, tackle obstacles, and embrace change. His captivating storytelling and award-winning photography creates a truly memorable presentation that people refers to for years to come for further inspiration.

Chris Bashinelli

Chris “Bash” Bashinelli gave up an acting career to exchange with the world. As Host of Bridge the Gap on PBS and the National Geographic Channel, Bash takes us on an introspective adventure- walking in the shoes of people halfway around the world and encouraging us to think differently about our lives. Bash has spoken around the world, from the United Nations General Assembly Hall, to Fortune 500 Companies, to entrepreneur organizations in Saudi Arabia. He is the youngest male ever to singlehandedly moderate the UN International Day of Peace. He is also a contributing writer for Huffington Post, Lonely Planet, Delta Sky and the Daily News Zimbabwe. Bash’s keynotes embody themes of service, productivity and cultural understanding. He helps audiences better realize their potential to become Global Citizens- productive members of their organization, their family, and ultimately- the world!

Bertice Berry

As a sociologist, an award-winning entertainer, comedienne, and lecturer with 20 years of experience, Dr. Bertice Berry has touched the hearts and minds of people from all walks of life. Dr. Berry was the host and co-executive producer of her own nationally syndicated talk show, "The Bertice Berry Show," and hosted "USA Live," a four-hour live interview and entertainment show on the USA Cable Network.
She's been featured on "The Oprah Winfrey Show," "The Tonight Show With Jay Leno," and "BET Live". She is also the author of her best-selling inspirational memoir; I'm On My Way, But Your Foot Is on My Head. Each organization she speaks to is given a tailor-made speech designed to address the specific needs of their group. She takes a humorous approach to serious subjects that have her audiences laughing and thinking at the same time. Topics include: Redefining Diversity, Change & Transformation, Finding Your Purpose, Wellness, Self Esteem and Gender Issues.

Walter Bond

Walter Bond is called “Mr. Accountability” because as a leadership and motivational speaker he forces each of his listeners to learn to be responsible for whatever situation they are in. Through his programs, workshops, and books he teaches that personal accountability, confidence, and success are possible for all who desire it. Walter will captivate your audience through his unique and memorable personal stories, teaching them the lessons learned from his experience in selling, as an entrepreneur, and being an NBA team player. He helps his audience see how they can transform challenges into opportunities, obstacles into testimonies, and that success is a matter of personal choice. In 2013, Walter became the host on the Food Network's Giving You the Business – a new reality show featuring exceptional employees who vie for the chance to win their own food franchise.

Roger Crawford

Roger Crawford impacted the game of tennis and does the same as a motivational speaker when he instills passion into each of his audience members. His compelling storytelling skills tell the journey of becoming an NCAA Division I college athlete despite having four impaired limbs. Sports Illustrated calls Roger one of the most accomplished physically challenged athletes in the world and he holds certification from the United States Tennis Association. Roger’s speaking skills are perfect to motivate and captivate any audience and help them realize they can achieve goals they never thought possible. With Roger as your keynote speaker you have the opportunity to break through your industry’s barriers and revolutionize the way your company does business.

Paul Assaiante

Coach Paul Assaiante knows how to motivate teams for success. As the current coach of the Men’s Squash team at Trinity College and the former Men’s Tennis team coach, Paul has motivated top athletes from around the world. He is known for his unique achievement as the “winningest coach in college sports history”, winner of 16 NCAA Championships titles, and 22-year dedication as squash coach. Paul’s core belief is the need to embrace fear in order to remove obstacles blocking success. He shares his experience and lessons on building teams of champions in his book, Run to the Roar: Coaching to Overcome Fear. Paul brings together the best players from around the world and demonstrates how teammates from diverse cultures, religions, and ethnicities can unite as a winning team year after year. He uses his experiences to help leaders in any field embrace collaboration, cultural diversity, and leadership models that encourage employees to give everything they have- every day, and build winning teams.

Joan Brock

Author of 'More Than Meets the Eye', Joan Brock won the hearts of the insurance industry's 'Million Dollar Round Table' and the NBC 'Today Show' audiences with her heart rendering and uplifting story of courage, perseverance and acceptance. Joan draws parallels between her own story and the challenges which face organizations. Her extraordinary life story moves audiences to accept their own personal and professional hardships with Courage and Humor. As Joan puts it, "Life is full of irreversible opportunities, and you have a choice to see them as assets or obstacles." Urging audiences to "play the hand you're dealt," Joan helps organizations see corporate challenges from a new perspective. In June 2003, a Lifetime Original Movie "More Than Meets the Eye: The Joan Brock Story" premiered to much acclaim.

Larry Brudnicki

Captain Larry Brudnicki was the leader of the US Coast Guard ship that performed two dramatic rescues during the worst storm in over 100 years - the storm that became known as “The Perfect Storm,” inspiring the book and blockbuster movie. As a leadership speaker, Captain Brudnicki reflects on his experience managing teams through challenging circumstances to help organizations become more successful. He delivers steps that can help audiences make decisions under pressure and risk management tactics that help them avoid pitfalls. He has a perfect balance between humor and real-life drama that keeps his audiences intrigued till the end.

Tom Flick

Dynamic leadership expert Tom Flick has garnered a reputation around the world as an authority on developing leaders, leading effective change and accelerating personal, team and organizational performance. Tom has the unique gift to connect with the audience’s heart as well as their head. He understands that people, not programs, help organizations change and grow. Tom has worked with a list of clients that includes Microsoft, Google, American Express, Amazon, NASA and the Pentagon. Tom draws on his leadership experience as a former NFL quarterback for seven seasons, his extensive work in corporate America, and his alliance with leadership guru, Dr. John Kotter. Tom provides actionable solutions to develop leaders, lead change, and drive performance. Tom has an exceptional ability to communicate clear business solutions combined with humor, wit and razor-sharp insight.

Jason Jennings

Jason Jennings has spent the time to research the world’s fastest growing companies to discover what it takes to have an outstanding business. As a leadership speaker he shares his findings and customizes the revolutionary ideas to fit your business needs. Jennings began his career as a radio and television reporter and was the youngest radio station group owner in the nation. Later, he founded Jennings-McGlothlin & Company, a consulting firm that became the world's largest media consultancy, and also authored It’s Not the Big that Eat the Small: It’s the Fast that Eat the Slow. His keynotes expose your company to opportunities and insights that can lead you to a powerful new future.

Dan Clark

When Dan Clark recovered from a paralyzing football injury, he started a Multi-Million Dollar Corporation and became one of the most in-demand motivational speakers in North America. Since 1982, he has been inspiring change in organizations by reinvigorating passion, building strong connections in the workplace, and transforming their workforce into high performance thinkers! His latest book, The Art of Significance, will help you and your organization Achieve The Level Beyond Success by inspiring you to live the Twelve Highest Universal Laws of Life Changing Leadership. With powerful, emotionally stirring, and entertaining illustrations from business, sports, education, and the military, Dan’s speaking eloquence will take you from where you are to where you want to be!

Mike Schlappi

There has never been such a powerful story to change so many people’s perspective on life than when Mike Schlappi is your motivational speaker. Mike shares his jaw-dropping experience of getting shot at point blank range in the chest and becoming paralyzed at the age of 14. His battle through recovery brought him to play basketball from a wheelchair and become a standout athlete. Mike’s thought-provoking keynote presentations challenges individuals of all ages that despite difficult circumstances, you can take response-ability and be empowered. Mike’s mission to help people get through difficult times has inspired thousands to be a stronger and better person and continues to do so.

Wayne Cotter

A hilarious and attention grabbing comedian and emcee, Wayne Cotter brings laughter to all that are around him. Wayne is perfect for any event that is in need of a vivacious entertainer. As said by Jay Leno, Wayne is “one of the funniest comedians working today.” Wayne hosted the Fox series “Comic Strip Live,” was seen in feature films “Spy Hard” and The Aristocrats,” and has countless appearances on David Letterman and Jay Leno. Once you hear Wayne you’ll agree that he is a fresh, smart, funny comedian who brings a vibrant spark to everyone.

Ken Burns

Ken Burns has been making documentary films for over 35 years and as a professional speaker he brings his audience through his experiences to tell astounding stories. He is a sought after public speaker, appearing at colleges, civic organizations and business groups throughout the country. Any audience he speaks to leaves inspired to follow their own creative desires. Ken’s films have won thirteen Emmy Awards and two Oscar nominations, and in September of 2008, at the News & Documentary Emmy Awards, Ken was honored by the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences with a Lifetime Achievement Award. A compelling storyteller, Burns speaks on these topics of his documentaries as well as the creative process.

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