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Jim  Harbaugh

Jim Harbaugh

Leader, Activist & Head Football Coach at the University of Michigan

Biography

Jim Harbaugh’s bold passion, combined with his unique ability to rally a struggling team, and cultivate trusting relationships has made him one of today’s most respected leaders on and off the field. The son of beloved college football coach Jack Harbaugh, Jim comes from a family with a deep tradition of strong leaders and an unprecedented dedication to the game of football. Read More >

Harbaugh attended the University of Michigan where he won Big Ten Conference Player of the Year, started in a Rose Bowl, and finished third in a competitive Heisman Trophy race. After college, he enjoyed a successful 14-year career in the NFL playing for the Chicago Bears, Indianapolis Colts, Baltimore Ravens and the San Diego Chargers. He earned the nickname “Captain Comeback” for his ability to turn around a team with a losing record. This talent made him a highly sought-after coach following his retirement in 2000.

Jim was the quarterback coach for the Oakland Raiders in 2002 and 2003 and mentored starting quarterback Rich Gannon to an appearance at Superbowl XXXVII. In 2004, he joined the University of San Diego for three seasons where he led the Toreros to a 29-6 record during his tenure. Then, Harbaugh became the Head Coach at Stanford University, turning their abysmal 1-11 record in 2006 into a memory of the past when in 2010 he led the Cardinal to a 12-1 record just four seasons later, earning himself the Woody Hayes Coach of the Year award. In 2011, Jim returned to the NFL as Head Coach for the San Francisco 49ers where he became one of their most successful coaches in the league after just four years where he earned multiple NFC championship appearances and was named NFC Coach of the year.

In 2015, Harbaugh made the decision to return to his alma mater as head coach at the University of Michigan. His father Jack, who coached at Michigan from 1973-1979, was brought back on to the staff and continues to serve as an inspiration for Jim’s books, Enthusiasm Unknown to Mankind and Rise Again, each of which is a collection of intimate photos and quotes that have motivated the Harbaugh family and the teams they have led. His popularity within and passion for the game of football prompted Amazon Prime in 2018 to launch a documentary series about Coach Harbaugh and his team, entitled All or Nothing: The Michigan Wolverines.

As head football coach of the University of Michigan, Harbaugh believes in unconventional coaching. He wants to create a family-like atmosphere with his team by instilling stronger chemistry between them. He achieves this unique goal by orchestrating worldly trips for his student-athletes. Their latest newsworthy adventure was to France, where the players visited the Eiffel Tower as well as the American Cemetery and Memorial at Omaha Beach in Normandy, a powerful, prideful experience moving many to tears as a sobering reminder of what it took to fight for their freedom. Previous trips included Rome and a visit to the Vatican, where Coach Harbaugh conversed with Pope Francis and left him an iconic University of Michigan winged helmet. Coach Harbaugh also remains passionate about giving back to the community. A member of the Legal Services Corporation’s Leaders Council, he helped raise money and awareness for legal services for low-income Americans, in addition to receiving a key to Toledo, his birthplace.

Off the field character and portrayal is critical piece to Coach Harbaugh’s team and personal philosophy. Jim is a passionate supporter of equal access to justice. He serves on The Legal Services Corporation’s Leaders Council, which works to increase access to civil legal assistance for low-income Americans. “True leadership is standing up on behalf of the marginalized to always do what is right,” says Harbaugh.

In 1998, he established the Jim Harbaugh Foundation with the mission to support Michigan’s at-risk youth and the organizations that provide them with the aid and support they need to succeed. In 2018, the V Foundation has decided to honor Harbaugh for his commitment to fighting pediatric cancer.

Jim Harbaugh attacks each day with an enthusiasm unknown to mankind. His keynotes will inspire audiences to live boldly, lead authentically, and approach challenges with passion and persistence. Read Less ^

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Speech Topics

An Enthusiasm Unknown to Mankind

Few people possess the enthusiasm and tenacity that Jim Harbaugh brings to each day of his life. His ability to turn a struggling team into fierce competition is rare, and something all professionals, regardless of industry, can learn from. In this riveting keynote, Harbaugh challenges audiences to elevate their own enthusiasm while empowering them with the tools to lead authentically and by example. With antidotal stories from his award-winning career and proven methods of success, Jim will leave your audience motivated and equipped to achieve new heights with tangible tips on improving efficiency, communication, and synergy amongst teams.

The Drive for Justice

In 2017, the Legal Justice Corporation reported that 86% of civil legal problems reported by low-income Americans receive inadequate or no legal help. As a member of LJC’s Leader’s Council, Harbaugh is working to change that. Motivated by the belief that we need to think of our country as a team, he advocates for a “fundamental fairness” across income brackets. In this enlightening presentation, Harbaugh uses real-time facts and case studies to outline the critical need for improved access to justice and the steps we can take as a country to get there.

A Conversation with Jim Harbaugh

In this amusing and enlightening presentation, celebrated football coach Jim Harbaugh shares behind-the-scenes stories and the lessons he’s learned over his impressive career as a college and NFL player and coach. He will certainly leave audiences in stitches, recalling hilarious anecdotes from his childhood and the locker room; but, he also connects with his listeners in ways that get them to think and question the norms. This conversation is the perfect balance of entertainment and inspiration.