Social Entrepreneur & Veteran
Rye Barcott is a veteran and social entrepreneur. While serving as a U.S. Marine, he co-founded the non-governmental organization Carolina For Kibera, which for 15 years has helped break cycles of violence and extreme poverty with innovative, data-driven public health in one of the largest informal settlements in Sub-Saharan Africa. After the Marines, he graduated from Harvard Business School and co-founded with a fellow Marine Double Time Capital, an American clean energy investment firm. Read More >
Listening Well and Asking Better Questions are Crucial Skills
Tabitha's Grassroots Healthcare System
Sustaining a Non-profit
Changes Needs to Come From Within
Leadership When It Matters Most
How do small teams react effectively under extreme duress? What can we learn from effective teams of committed individuals and apply to ordinary situations where leadership matters? This talk focuses on five lessons from the Marine Corps and humanitarian work peace building in one of the world's largest shanty towns. Barcott guides his audience on how they can more effectively lead and make an impact when the going gets tough.
“Many Americans go to the developing world to serve others. A smaller percentage end up being useful,” New York Times columnist David Brooks opined in his column, “The Rugged Altruists.” What differentiates successful social enterprises at home or abroad? As inspiring as it is informative, this presentation reveals the framework of participatory development, focuses on practical lessons learned, and motivates audiences on their own quests to make a difference in the world. Read More >
Barcott wrote his book It Happened on the Way to War specifically for students and has presented to more than 100 schools during first year reading programs, commencements, and other featured presentations. Read Less ^
Specifically designed for healthcare professionals, this presentation focuses on applying the model of participatory development to effect better health outcomes at home and abroad. It examines the motivational story of Tabitha Festo, a widowed nurse and mother of three who started a clinic with a grant for $26 in 2000. Read More >
The Tabitha Clinic is now the base of the largest program the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention operates in informal settlements worldwide. This motivational talk focuses on the model of participatory development and how effective, sustainable change is led from within communities, not imposed from the top down. Read Less ^
It’s relatively easy to start something. The beginning is often exhilarating. It’s the stuff books are made of. But the hardest parts often come in sustaining, building, and growing over years. This talk draws on Barcott’s experiences co-founding a company, a non-profit, and an investment team within a large company. Read More >
It mixes funny anecdotes with inspiring stories of teams and individuals persevering through tough times to accomplish missions, then re-invent themselves toward new goals while often sticking together as teams. It is a motivational talk that gives audiences ideas for how they can be more effective at starting and sustaining new initiatives, whether they are inside a large organization or creating a new one. Read Less ^
"I wanted to let you know how much I enjoyed your talk. I work on 15 events every year with about two guest speakers per conference, and you were by far my favorite speaker we have ever had. It’s two days later and I’m still thinking about your work in Africa, in the Marine Corp., and the impact you have been able to have on countless people and communities. You are truly inspiring and I greatly admire everything you have been able to accomplish."
"In 2007, Rye Barcott, our youngest-ever commencement speaker, electrified the audience. Never have I seen the kind of positive, visceral reaction that Rye created in the audience, young and old alike. They held onto each word, each compelling story, and Rye's message of collaborative leadership and sparking change from within troubled places. They were moved in a way that traditional commencement speakers rarely effect; tears flowed freely. Older faculty members who had questioned my judgment in asking a young man in his late 20s to be commencement speaker came up later and told me how wrong they were and how awed they were by his capacity to transform."
"Rye Barcott is an exceptional public speaker. His 2011 Emerging Issues Forum presentation to an audience of more than 1,000 public and private sector leaders was an inspiring tour de force that concluded with a standing ovation. I recommend him with the highest enthusiasm."
"Barcott is a role model of authentic leadership in action. His leadership is the way of the future, whether in the private, public, or nonprofit sectors, or working collaboratively with multiple sectors to solve the world's greatest problems."
"Whether we are in the slums of the world's biggest cities, in rural Haiti, or on college campuses, we can learn from Tabitha, Salim, and Rye—a nurse, a community organizer, and a young Marine living in urban poverty—about how to fight extreme privation and bring about lasting change."
"This is a must-hear presentation for anyone interested in leadership. The solutions to our greatest challenges will be found by unlocking the potential of communities like Kibera."