Speaking to the World
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Adventurer & Best-Selling Author
Chris Bertish is a man of many passions. He has set world records, stand-up paddled solo across the Atlantic, surfed monster waves, written best-selling books, presented keynote talks to hundreds of thousands across the globe and he has directed motion picture documentaries. Somehow, he has still managed to grow multiple entrepreneurial businesses in South Africa and across the world, and to fight for our youth, our planet and our future. Read More >
In 2010, Chris made headlines when he won the Mavericks Big Wave Invitational, a surfing competition without rival. Born a skinny kid in Kenilworth, Cape Town, Chris found a way to travel across the world and outwit, outsmart and outperform the world’s best-paid professional athletes – and forever change the face of big-wave surfing.
Six years later, after half a decade of intense training, Chris set out from Morocco, alone, on a stand-up paddleboard, with his sights set on the shores of Antigua in the Caribbean. 93 days, 7500 kilometers and uncountable challenges, terrors, self-doubts and trials later, he crossed the Atlantic Ocean and entered, tanned and bearded, into the Guinness Book of World Records. What is perhaps most inspiring about this tale is not the work of Chris himself, but the 1000 children of the Lunchbox Fund and Operation Smile that he did all of this for. 1000 kids who had been born with cleft palates, but who now have had their futures returned to them. He continues to use his adventures to support charities in the humanitarian, educational, sustainability and environmental realms, to bring about tangible positive change, and to inspire us all to be better human beings.
Both of these adventures have since been told through award-winning films and best-selling books. Red Bull Adventure has touted him as the one who “redefined the concept of extreme adventure.” He has become renowned for his dynamic and inspiring keynote addresses delivered to all areas of the globe, which move audiences to tears, to laughter, and to change, with a powerful narrative and audio-visual overload that keeps people on the edge of their seats from start to finish.
In the last few years Chris has shared the stage with Bill Clinton and George W Bush, has spoken at multiple global TEDx events, the World Economic Forum and the World Wildlife Fund, and has shared his insights with companies like Google, NASA, Cisco, Schneider Electric, Southern Wine & Glazer, Coca-Cola, Mercedes Benz and SAP.
Chris recently finished his new feature film documentary called Last known Co-ordinates, and is currently working on his second book, All in!, both of which tell the story of his trans-Atlantic journey. Read Less ^
I Believed in Myself and I Believed in my Dream
Ocean Drive Trailer
“Chris is an amazing human!! Hearing how he maintained his positivity and mental health through his incredible voyage is amazingly inspirational. His talk was very timely; reminding us of the essential elements and tools required to maintain a positive outlook during these trying times. Chris's authentic delivery and positive energy left our team uplifted and inspired!”
“If you're looking for a motivational speaker to capture every last bit of your attention from beginning to end, Chris delivers a uniquely stand-out engaging narrative. He invited listeners along his journey (and wow what a journey he has had!) to vicariously experience how he epically surmounted countless challenges through his resilience and unfailing positivity. I felt like I was right there in the water, learning to surf the waves of change and uncertainty along with him. He backed up his motivational talk with action - he's one who totally walks the talk, and motivates his listeners to boldly do just the same. This was one of our most successful talks at Salesforce.”
“I was not prepared for the level of determination, passion, intelligence, and insight Chris was able to convey about his life, undertakings, and crazy beyond-the-pale adventure accomplishments. Here at Jet Propulsion Laboratory we “Dare Mighty Things” in space exploration, and I could see how Chris’ story was resonating with the audience. Going beyond the extraordinary for the benefit of others, and humanity – that’s what we both are doing. I take my hat off to Chris and thank him for the gift of his boggling and articulate story of how far beyond the place where we usually stop in life, we really can go.”
“We were very fortunate to have Chris Bertish come to speak with our Cisco teams last week on the 10 Tools for Isolation and Lockdown Success. His session was incredibly insightful and touched on many aspects of how to best approach the current lockdown situation, both physically and mentally. Chris provided us with an authentic view of his own isolation experiences and shared top tips that were easy to incorporate into daily life to help us navigate through this crisis and even beyond. I believe anyone could benefit from learning and applying these tools in their life. Extremely grateful to have been a part of this session and to have shared in the wisdom of Chris’s insights.”
"Chris delivered his new virtual talk: “Thrive! Through Change, Challenge and Turbulent Times!” Chris’ story is one of powerful and lasting self-determination which was perfectly timed given the personal and professional challenges we are all facing during the global lock-down. I recommend this talk for those who work remotely, who need to adapt to increased isolation and who need to develop new methods of prioritization and strategic thinking. Chris will entertain and inspire but he will also help you to stay positive, be effective and thrive while keeping things in perspective. In this difficult and challenging time, I can’t recommend this man highly enough."
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