Healthy Living

Bethany Hamilton

Bethany Hamilton, at the age of 13 survived a 14-foot tiger shark attack off the shores of her hometown Hawaii was left with one arm and only 26 days later she courageously overcame all odds and began surfing again. In the wake of this life-changing event that took her arm and nearly her life, Bethany’s feisty determination and steadfast faith spurred her toward an adventurous comeback that gave her the grit to turn her loss into a gift for others. Bethany is a true champion who inspiring millions worldwide through the love of her family, her sheer determination, and her unwavering faith.

Bethany wrote about her experience in the 2004 autobiography Soul Surfer: A True Story of Faith, Family, and Fighting to Get Back on the Board. Bethany’s story has touched the hearts of everyone and her inspirational message, charitable efforts, and overall spirit. In April 2011, the feature film Soul Surfer was released, based on the book and additional interviews. She has appeared on many television shows since the loss of her arm.

Known most notably for one of the biggest comeback stories of our era, Bethany Hamilton has since become synonymous with inspiration. New York Times Best Selling Author, life who’s been featured in a Hollywood movie, professional surfer, and spiritual icon, Bethany is a sought after public speaker. She is motivating audiences worldwide to live their life with more tenacity, courage and faith.

 

 

POPULAR PROGRAM TOPICS
(Bethany’s programs are frequently conducted in an interview style)

Fighting to Get Back on the Board
Bethany has already lived more than a lifetimes worth of triumph and tragedy, and she shares every poignant moment. Audiences learn how she rose once again to the challenges of competition after a life-changing event, how she dealt with the maelstrom of media attention, and how she relied on her faith and innate positive thinking to embrace changes that would undo most people. Bethany’s passion and insight, and filled with thrilling moments of the sport personify, a portrait of American heroism that will captivate audiences of all ages.

Rise Above
Bethany shares her courage and enthusiasm, inspiring audiences to face life head on and stand strong in their faith. Since losing her arm, Bethany has chosen to use her experience to become an inspiration and help others to overcome adversity, no matter how great. Bethany will inspire your audience to believe that you can do whatever they want if you just set your heart to it, and just never give up, and just go out there and do it.

Full Biography

Bethany Hamilton has become a source of inspiration to millions through her story of faith, determination, and hope. Born into a family of surfers on February 8, 1990, on the island of Kauai, Hawaii, Bethany began surfing at a young age.

At the age of thirteen, on October 31, 2003, Bethany was attacked by a 14-foot tiger shark while surfing off Kauai’s North Shore. The attack left Bethany with a severed left arm. After losing over 60% of her blood, and making it through several surgeries without infection, Bethany was on her way to recovery with an unbelievably positive attitude. Lifeguards and doctors believe her strong water sense and faith in God helped get her through the traumatic ordeal.

Miraculously, just one month after the attack, Bethany returned to the water to continue pursuing her goal to become a professional surfer. In January of 2004, Bethany made her return to surf competition; placing 5th in the Open Women’s division of that contest. With no intention of stopping, Bethany continued to enter and excel in competition. Just over a year after the attack she took 1st place in the Explorer Women’s division of the 2005 NSSA National Championships – winning her first National Title.

In 2007, Bethany realized her dream and turned pro. Bethany has since participated in numerous ASP and World Tour Events with her major highlight being a second place finish in the ASP 2009 World Junior Championships.

Since losing her arm, Bethany’s story has been told in hundreds of media outlets and she has been recognized with numerous awards, public appearances, and various speaking engagements.

In October 2004, Bethany shared her life story in her autobiography entitled Soul Surfer. Seven years later, the book was made into a major motion picture bearing the same title which released theatrically in April, and for home entertainment in August, 2011. Other books Bethany has written include “Devotions for the Soul Surfer,” “Rise Above,” A “Soul Surfer” Bible, “Ask Bethany,” and “Clash,” “Burned,” “Storm,” and “Crunch.”

Out of the water, Bethany has grown from a young teenage girl with aspirations of becoming a professional surfer into a twenty-year old professional surfer with aspirations of becoming a beacon of inspiration and hope. Through the platform of professional sport, Bethany has been able to touch a large number of people with her message, charitable efforts, and overall spirit. Bethany just launched her own foundation, Friends of Bethany, which supports shark attack survivors, traumatic amputees, and serves to inspire others through her life story, and is involved in numerous other charitable efforts.

Mallory Weggemann

2012 Paralympian Mallory Weggemann had her life changed on January 21, 2008. A routine epidural to help treat back pain left the college freshman paralyzed from the waist down. Having been a competitive swimmer since the age of seven, and still coping with her new disability, she found one thing unchanged – her love for swimming. On April 8, 2008, Mallory returned to the pool, and has been breaking national and world records ever since. Mallory is currently ranked first in six of the seven Paralympic events and has her eyes set on nine gold medals in London.

Swimming Career:

Current member of the US Paralympics National Team;
2009, 2010 and 2011 USA Swimming Disabled Swimmer of the Year (Trischa L. Zorn Award);
2009 and 2010 Swimming World Magazine Female Disabled Swimmer of the Year;
Five gold medals 2009 IPC Swimming World Championships 25m in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil;
Eight gold medals and one silver medal 2010 IPC Swimming World Championships in Eindhoven, Netherlands;
2011 ESPN ESPY winner – Best Female Athlete with a Disability;
USA Swimming Central Zone Athlete Representative;
USA Swimming Disability Committee;
USA Swimming Athlete Executive Committee;
Currently holds 34 American Records; and
Currently holds 15 World Records:

Personal Story:
Everything Happens for a Reason. (Includes moving anecdotes from personal journal).

You’re the Best, you can make a Difference, and you can Change the World.

Full Biography

On January 21, 2008, Mallory Weggemann received an epidural injection to help treat back pain; however by the time it was finished she was forever changed. Complications with the procedure left the college freshman paralyzed from the waist down.

Weggemann has been a competitive swimmer since the age of seven. After her injury at the age of 18, Weggemann chose to return to the pool. In April 2008, her older sister found an article in the local newspaper discussing the Paralympic Swimming Trials. The meet was being held at the University of Minnesota Aquatics Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Still coping with her new disability, Weggemann found one thing unchanged, her love for swimming.

While attending the meet as a spectator with her sister, she met several of the US National Team coaches as well as her current coach, Jim Anderson. The following Monday, Weggemann returned to the pool and has been swimming since. She touts her Paralympic trials experience as life changing. “I have always loved the sport but when this happened I thought my days of swimming were over and when I realized I could still do it, well I will never forget that moment.”

Weggemann broke her first set of world records at the Can Am Speedo Para Swim Meet held in Edmonton, Alberta Canada in July 2009. Weggemann set world records in the 50m freestyle, 400m freestyle, and 100m butterfly.

At the 2009 Short Course IPC Swimming World Championships in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in November 2009, Weggemann broke six more world records (50m freestyle, 100m freestyle, 200m freestyle, 400m freestyle, 50m butterfly and 20 point 4x50m freestyle relay) and took home five gold medals.

In August 2010 at the Long Course IPC Swimming World Championships in Eindhoven, Netherlands, Weggemann proved herself again in the pool by taking home eight gold medals (50m freestyle, 100m freestyle, 400m freestyle, 100m breaststroke, 50m butterfly, 200m individual medley, 400m freestyle relay, 400m medley relay) and one silver (100m backstroke). Weggemann finished the meet with nine World Records. The IPC wrote the following regarding Weggemann’s performance. “USA’s Mallory Weggemann (S7) was the most successful athlete of these World Championships, winning eight gold medals and breaking nine world records“.

Weggemann was ranked number one in the world in six of the seven paralympic events.

Weggemann is currently on leave from the University of Minnesota – School of Journalism until after the 2012 Paralympic Games in London, UK

Naomi Judd

Grammy Award winning singer Naomi Judd makes up half of country music’s most famous mother/daughter duo, The Judds. Over the course of her stunning career, Naomi won 5 Grammy Awards and an array other music awards and honors. After receiving Hepatitis C diagnosis, Naomi retired from music, but continues to inspire others through humanitarian activities and awareness campaigns. Naomi’s meteoric rise to country music superstar and American icon – from her humble beginnings as a single mom in a small Kentucky town – is an inspiring story of overcoming the odds through optimism and hard work. Read more

Naomi Rhode

Naomi Rhode

Award winning, dynamic, inspiring, international speaker Naomi Rhode, RDH, CSP, CPAE shares her expertise on team building, interpersonal communication and motivation. As part of the Speakers’ Hall of Fame she has spoken before thousands of people in all 50 states and 15 countries, sharing her expertise on insights and techniques on leadership, personal and corporate empowerment, successful team development, motivation and interpersonal communication skills, and change and growth. For the multitudes that have heard her, Naomi’s warmth, enthusiasm and unique insight into the dynamics of person-to-person relationships have made her a “Remembered Experience”.
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Ken Dychtwald

Ken Dychtwald

Ken Dychtwald, Ph.D. is the nation’s foremost thought leader on population aging and its profound business, social, healthcare, financial, workforce and cultural implications. Over the next decade, leading industries, companies, governments, and major institutions will be challenged to transform their strategies, marketing, branding, distribution, product development, and workforce management to fully prepare for and capitalize on key trends created by a rapidly aging population.
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John Anderson

John Anderson

Four women in John W. Anderson’s life were diagnosed with breast cancer – his wife, his mother, his sister, and his mom’s best friend. John realized that the experiences he had and the strategies that he developed as a caregiver, which he writes about in his account Stand by Her: A Breast Cancer Guide for Men (selected by The Wall Street Journal as one of the best health books of 2009), would be beneficial to all caregivers facing any life-threatening disease with their loved ones, as well as the medical community treating those patients. Read more

Mitch Gaylord

Mitch Gaylord

Mitch Gaylord first thrilled the world in 1984 when he led the United States Olympic gymnastics team to its Gold Medal victory. In addition to being the first American Gymnast in history to score a Perfect “10”, Mitch went on to capture a Silver medal for Vaulting and two Bronze medals for Rings and Parallel Bars. As the number one ranked gymnast in 1983 and 1984, Mitch invented two skills now named internationally after him. To this day, the Gaylord Flip and the Gaylord Two are considered among the most difficult and spectacular feats in gymnastics. Read more

Harley Pasternak

Harley Pasternak

Celebrity trainer, renowned fitness and nutrition expert Harley Pasternak, co-host of ABC’s The Revolution, shares his ‘make it count’ tips on how to make healthy choices and incorporate healthy eating and fitness into everyday life. Pasternak doesn’t believe in spending hours in the gym, and realizes everyone has limited time. His best-selling books, 5-Factor Fitness and 5-Factor Diet, have been published in international markets in seven different languages. As a renowned fitness and nutrition expert, Pasternak is responsible for getting many of Hollywood’s most recognized celebrities into the best shape of their lives. Read more

Todd Whitthorne

Todd is a seasoned health and wellness speaker and a gifted communicator. He regularly presents keynotes and breakouts at conferences and events of varying size nationwide. He also is an expert in corporate wellness programs for companies and groups including schools, non-profits, professional associations and other organizations. His expertise includes a wide variety of health and wellness related topic Read more

Mac Gray

“Motivating Attitudes for Change” – Mac Gray talks to young people on the dangers of underage drinking, drugs both recreational and prescription, driving under the influence and how “It could happen to you!” Mac’s speaking is far reaching. He continues to touch the hearts and minds of thousands of teens and young adults, with sobering warnings about the dangers alcohol, drugs, and driving. He also offers words of wisdom and encouragement to others who are living with physical disabilities. While Mac has gained recognition through his role in the disability awareness videos, it’s his role in life that continues to make him a star!

PROGRAMS

  • Decisions & Consequences ~ is a program designed to impress upon teens and young adults that with every Decision there will be a Consequences that they will have to live with for the rest of their lives. Underage drinking and drug usage lead Mac to believe he was invincible and nothing like this would ever happen to him. With his powerful message he brings to reality just how fragile life really is and how it can happen to anyone at any time.
  • Dealing with Adversity ~ Mac Gray knows all too well what life is like after a devastating accident. “You either live or you die but how you live your life is up to you!” It is not an easy thing to do and there were times when he felt like giving up. Each and every day brings a new challenge and Mac is up for that, he enjoys speaking with anyone who has been through a similar situation to give them hope. “I would like to speak to Veterans who have served our country and come home with a disability to encourage them.” Mac chose to move on with his life, he has inspired many folks along his journey to live life to the fullest.
  • My Faith ~ Mac is a man with a strong spiritual values. He believes that everything happens for a reason and that bad things do happen to good people. He talks about how he struggled with his faith before and right after his accident. “I thought why did this happen to have it happen to me?” Hear how his Christian back ground helped him to turn his life around. “It is only by the Grace of God that I am still alive today!”

In addition, Mac advocates for people with disabilities and works to educate others on what it is like to live with a disability. Mac has played in intricate role in the following videos:

“The Ten Commandments of Communicating with People with Disabilities,” which is an internationally distributed training video. Produced by Irene Ward and Associates.

Wendy’s and the Americans with Disabilities Act,” an internationally distributed training video. Produced by Wendy’s International, Inc.

“Meet the Challenge,” an internationally distributed training video. Produced by Matol Botanical International Inc.

While Mac has gained recognition through his roles in disability awareness videos, it’s his role in LIFE that makes him a star!

Full Biography

Biography

The first 25 years of Mac Gray’s life were like that of any other active young man. He was outgoing and involved with sports, social functions and extracurricular activities. “He thought he had the world in the palm of his hands.” In September 1984, everything changed. Mac had a motorcycle accident that left him a quadriplegic. However, it did not leave him hopeless.

The years that have followed Mac’s accident have been full of life, more than most of us could ever imagine. Mac’s story, powerfully told through his award winning “Decisions & Consequences” program, is one from which all can benefit. Everyone should hear his message, especially teenagers who have been handed the keys to the family car.

Mac’s motivational speaking experience is far reaching. He continues to touch the hearts and minds of thousands of teens and young adults, with sobering warnings about the dangers of alcohol, drugs, and driving. Mac is also a strong proponent against underage drinking and parents that purchase liquor for their children, especially around graduation. Mac uses a powerful PowerPoint slide presentation of photos prior to his accident, during his hospital stay, his time at Dodd Hall Rehabilitation and life after a devastating accident.

In addition, Mac advocates for people with disabilities and works to educate others on what it is like to live with a disability. Mac has played in intricate role in the following videos:

“The Ten Commandments of Communicating with People with Disabilities,” which is an internationally distributed training video. Produced by Irene Ward and Associates.

Wendy’s and the Americans with Disabilities Act,” an internationally distributed training video. Produced by Wendy’s International, Inc.

“Meet the Challenge,” an internationally distributed training video. Produced by Matol Botanical International Inc.

While Mac has gained recognition through his roles in disability awareness videos, it’s his role in LIFE that makes him a star!