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Courtney  Clark

Courtney Clark

Entrepreneur & Cancer Survivor

Courtney Clark

Entrepreneur & Cancer Survivor


With two successful businesses, four rounds of cancer (so far!), and one brain aneurysm under her belt, Courtney Clark is the luckiest unlucky person in the world. Diagnosed with cancer for the first time at age 26, Courtney went to work for several cancer nonprofits. At age 29, Courtney founded the nonprofit Austin Involved, creating programs to engage young professionals in philanthropy in simple, affordable ways. In the first year of operating Austin Involved, Courtney was diagnosed with a brain aneurysm and underwent three brain surgeries.

Today, Courtney is an in-demand Keynote Speaker who presents internationally to organizations on how to adapt faster and achieve more by developing Accelerated Resilience ™. Organizations hire Courtney to speak at their conferences and events because of her unique blend of what she calls “content-based motivation.” Her presentations balance left brain strategies with right brain storytelling, so every single member of the audience walks away feeling primed for success, no matter their personality or learning style. She works with teams who need to succeed during stress and change without burning out, lashing out, or giving up. 

Courtney’s resilience work has been featured in Forbes, Psychology Today, USA Today, and The Chicago Tribune. Her two books on resilience, The Giving Prescription and The Successful Struggle, have been called “practical,” “powerful,” and “empowering” by industry leaders.

In her free time, Courtney serves on the board of directors of the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society and the Junior League of Austin. With the Junior League, Courtney has chaired the annual Coats for Kids event, and is currently piloting a new program called Kids in Cool Shoes (KICS), where children in need will receive a pair of free athletic sneakers.

Courtney’s work on behalf of others has earned her several honors. She has been recognized with the Leadership Austin Ascendant Award, as well as her high school’s Distinguished Alumnae Award. In 2013, Courtney was a candidate for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s Woman of the Year. She has been recognized by Austin Monthly magazine as one of “20 in their 30s,” and by GivingCity magazine as one of 2012’s “New Philanthropists.” She has her Masters Degree in Philanthropy from Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota, where her graduate research focused on the role of philanthropy in helping people heal from traumatic life events. Her research, which became the basis of her first book, was honored with the University’s Outstanding Graduate Research award.  

Courtney’s experience in the community has also helped her grow her family. Soon after launching Austin Involved, Courtney and her husband, Jamie, were at an Austin Involved volunteer day when they met a young high school student with dreams of college and success as a musician. Today, Courtney and Jamie have welcomed Anthony into their family, and Courtney can often be seen proudly wearing her “UNT Mom” t-shirt around town. Courtney and her family live in Austin, TX with so many rescue animals that they have lost count.

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Detour: Winning When Life Doesn’t Go According to Plan

Hard work usually pays off. But sometimes, no matter how hard you work, your plans just… DON’T work. Resilience researcher Courtney Clark helps teams adapt to change and crisis when the stakes are high, and she has proven techniques to help you deal with life’s detours with humor, resilience, and tenacity. In this inspiring and interactive presentation, you’ll learn a multi-step framework for creating optimal outcomes in uncontrollable situations.

ReVisionary Thinking™: The Science and Strategy of Adapting to Change

Why do some people adapt quickly to life’s roadblocks, while others struggle? The answer lies in how committed we are to “the plan”, and how willing and able we are to rewrite a new plan. Courtney Clark will give your team the tools of ReVisionary Thinking™, an evidence-based practice to survive challenges with more than just a positive attitude. Courtney’s research, strategies, case studies, humor, and stories help build employee agility and resilience, and create ReVisionary Thinkers at every level of your organization (and in their home lives!)

At the end of this session, participants will be able to…

  • Avoid the typical mistakes people make when confronted with change
  • Improve mental flexibility as individuals and teams
  • Understand why common change management strategies can DECREASE resilience (and what to do instead)
  • Generate more (and more innovative!) ideas when solving problems

The Art of Accelerated Resilience: Adapt Faster and Achieve More

In today’s competitive world, there’s no time to recover from our setbacks slowly. The research-based strategies from Courtney’s new book, The Successful Struggle, will have your team managing change, chaos, conflict, and life’s other challenges in the fastest, most productive way possible. Building resilience means developing new behavior patterns in tough times, and Courtney will show you the research behind the quickest ways to get back on track and be successful, no matter the challenges you face in life and work.

At the end of this session, participants will be able to…

  • Recognize the benefits of connecting with the purpose of change
  • Develop new strategies to maintain personal power and a sense of control during times of change and chaos
  • Apply the “Stop, Drop, and Roll” technique for chaos management

Be On Fire, Not Burned Out!: Strategies for Engagement and Enjoyment in Challenging Times

Resilient employees know how to handle stress without burning out. Courtney’s Accelerated ResilienceTM strategies lead to greater employee engagement, reduced turnover, and less stress at the office. If you need more innovation, more profit, less frustration, and less burnout, then you need a team that’s On Fire!

At the end of this session, participants will be able to…

  • Identify how change and chaos contribute to employee burnout
  • Discover why staying engaged in change is important, and the best tactics to keep you engaged
  • Construct new strategies for managing stress without the threat of burnout