Sample Keynote Presentation – Lee Ellis, CSP*

Thank you for learning more about speaking opportunities with Lee Ellis. 

Over forty years ago, America welcomed home Col. Lee Ellis and his fellow prisoners of war. When Lee got out of the Hanoi Hilton after 1,955 days of captivity, there was a stark realization that society had shifted while he was away. Honorable values and morals had declined in politics, academia, entertainment, and our homes. This issue has been a burden ever since his return and he has consistently taken a stand for strong personal values such as character, courage, and commitment as a means for building healthy organizations and culture that produce long-lasting results.

With his latest 2016 award-winning release entitled Engage with Honor: Building a Culture of Courageous Accountability, as well as his last award-winning book, Leading with Honor: Leadership Lessons from the Hanoi Hilton, Lee has brought new light to the subject of honor and values. Through his research, writing, and speaking, he now shares his story and leadership wisdom throughout the world.

As one of the only former Vietnam POWs to share about this crucible experience, your audience will hear about his dramatic story and the senior leaders that led them through unbelievable trials. They will be challenged and inspired to lead with selfless honor, integrity, and character as the foundation for their daily decision-making. Breaking free from the shackles of fear, shame, pride, and self-preservation is the key to authentic leadership, and it’s a call to Leading with Honor.

Lee is available to share his 40+ years of experience and expertise, and his biography of experience in a variety of industries provides a well-rounded perspective for your industry or event. Read just a few endorsements below from Lee’s most recent keynote speaking engagements.

To invite him to participate in your next meeting or conference, please contact me at (770)540-4108 or [email protected]. More information is also provided on this page.

I look forward to having the opportunity to speak with you soon!

Best Regards,

Stormie Knight-Ellwanger

Speaking & Publicity Administrator

Leading with Honor

*What is CSP Certification? – Learn More

Lee Ellis Biographical Introduction

Audiences | Venues

– Business/Corporate

– Healthcare

– Military/Government

– IT/Technical

– Innovation/Thought Leadership

– Faith-Based/Non-Profit

– Utilities/Public Safety

His past clients include Fortune 500 senior executives, C-Level leaders, management, and front-line staff in these sectors.

Keynote Presentation Topics

Leading with Honor®: Lee shares his story of being captured and held as a POW in Vietnam for over five years and the leadership principles that helped him and his comrades return home with honor.

Using the POW story as a vehicle, Lee adapts his message to the needs of the client/audience. Recurring themes in all of his presentations are courage, character, commitment, and knowing yourself to be authentic. Typically, he will highlight two or three of the lessons from the fourteen described in his award-winning book, Leading with Honor: Leadership Lessons from the Hanoi Hilton to fit the client’s desires.


Engage with Honor™: In addition to sharing his story of being captured and held as a POW in Vietnam for over five years, he shares the proven Courageous Accountability Model™ based on the core principles of character, courage, and commitment. Also, learn how the 4C’s can provide a tactical plan for increasing performance and getting results with your team or organization. A full-color handout is provided for each participant with the Courageous Accountability Model and 4C’s from his book and training resources.


Additional topics related to his subject matter experience and expertise include –

– Organizational Development

– Behavioral Assessment and Development

– Team Building and Development

– Hiring, Firing, and Retention

– Succession Planning


What Others Are Saying

These are just a few endorsements from our clients. Read more than 60 speaking endorsements here.

“Northwest Battle Buddies had the great honor of having Col Ellis be the guest speaker at our largest fundraiser of the year. The fundraiser was by far our most successful to date, [and] everyone who had the opportunity to listen to Col Ellis got a glimpse of the price of Freedom, a true American Hero and what he endured in the face of adversity.”

      – Shannon Walker – President/Founder Master Dog Trainer at Northwest Battle Buddies 

“Lee Ellis brought great insight to our customers and enthralled them as he related the leadership steps to those he lived as a POW. He was the highlight of our event, and we look forward to introducing him to more of our customers and co-workers in the months to come.”

      – Dan Gastley, Executive Vice President, Control Southern Inc

“Lee Ellis has spoken for us on two different occasions and he’s terrific. He takes the time to understand the audience to whom he’s speaking and delivers an on-target message that is truly phenomenal. His storytelling ability coupled with his lessons on leadership make for a winning combination.  I highly recommend Lee to anyone who is looking for an engaging speaker.”

      – Dan Oswald, Chief Executive Officer, BLR (Business and Legal Resources)

“Recently, Lee Ellis facilitated a leadership training event for 35 rather independent company managers, and I can speak on behalf of all our managers who were present in the meeting that each had a very enriching moment with valuable practical take away in several ways: in a better knowledge of self, in a better understanding of the other managers of the Denis Group and in having a clearer view on how to relate and work best with each other. More importantly, the managers of Denis Group had a clear view that there is no stereotype leader personality, but find that a richness in a diversity of leadership profiles provides opportunities for all as long as the team spirit is encouraged. We were thankful that Lee Ellis was able to share his experience and knowledge in leadership and to relate with our managers in a very meaningful way.”

      – Francois de Moulliac, Managing Director, Denis Asia Pacific Pte Ltd – Singapore, France

“One of the primary objectives of a presenter is to make the event organizer look good. This you did with spades yesterday. I have received numerous thanks and expressions of appreciation for inviting you as a speaker. You spoke from the heart with knowledge and conviction. You were superb.”

       – Dan Davies, Executive Director, National Association of Chief Executive Officers

“Duke Energy and Progress Energy recently merged, bringing two of the best electric utilities in the country into one organization. During this process, it became evident early on that we had an opportunity to establish a new culture for the combined organization. Colonel Ellis spoke to a group of about 140 key leaders within the Power Generation Operations and Central Engineering and Services groups and did a masterful job of relating his experiences in combat and as a prisoner of war in Vietnam to the challenges that Duke Energy is facing as we stitch our two companies together. He has helped us ‘lean into the pain’ and provide clarity as we face our mission head on. His presentation was masterfully done and left a permanent positive impression on those that attended.”

        – Jeffrey J. Lyash, Executive Vice President – Energy Supply (retired), Duke Energy



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