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Neal Petersen South Carolina
Neal Petersen

How do you navigate forward, deal with constant wind shifts, sudden storms, conquer fear, isolation, while dealing with an ever present changing world? Neal Petersen will take you on a personal journey around the world and show, by example ~ There are No Barriers - Only Solutions!

World-class, history-making adventurer, Neal completed two amazing journeys in his life: a single-handed yacht race around the world, 27,000 miles, 9 months at sea, alone, around Cape Horn, and in the smallest yacht he designed and built himself. And an even more arduous and eventful trip of overcoming racial prejudice during the harsh Apartheid era in South Africa, poverty, and a childhood physical disability, just to make it to the start line!

Neal's dramatic storytelling ignites and captivates audiences. With high energy and fully engaging presentation style, Neal captures audience's attention from the moment he walks onstage and leaves them with a fresh perspective on turning disadvantages into advantages.

Neal carries a treasure chest on stage, and in it symbols of how he reached his dream by turning set-backs and barriers into opportunities - then into solutions. Neal demonstrates how success is realized through innovation, balancing risk against return and being flexible enough to adapt to constant shifting winds. In these challenging times of uncertainly, fear and insecurity, many feel like solo sailors, adrift, grasping for survival. Neal lays out the importance of a clearly communicated vision, followed by detailed planning, preparation, passion and then execution.

Neal projects stunning images during his keynote and a 1 minute intro and a 4 minute powerful video of Neal rounding Cape Horn solo - his dream! He has thunder built-in and lightning and fog are easy options bringing his story to life for large audiences.

Proving vast international appeal, having lived and traveled in many parts of the world, Neal's Presentation is highly effective for the opening keynote to set a theme and provide a high energy and fascinating story capturing audience's attention and leaving them with a fresh perspective on turning disadvantages into advantages.


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  • There are No Barriers ~ Only Solutions! - In these challenging times of uncertainty, fear and insecurity rise, many feel like solo sailors, adrift, grasping for survival. Neal lays out the importance of a clearly communicated vision and direction, followed by detailed planning, preparation, passion and execution using his riveting personal story. Neal's life-story addresses adversity, diversity, leadership, team work, motivation, crisis, innovation, change, planning and preparation - then execution and the courage to embrace fears.

    Take away values:
    • Neal carries a treasure chest on-stage and in it are examples of how he turned barriers into opportunities to achieve his dream and empowers others to turn baggage into solutions.
    • Innovate - how to capitalize on ever changing winds storms.
    • Change - adapt to wind shifts and stormy seas by knowing when to alter course.
    • Leverage economic challenges to your advantage - keep pumping, choose a winning course and navigate to your advantage.
    • Attitude adjustment - refresh your vision - There are No Barriers ~ Only Solutions!
    • Elements of success include passion, determination, perseverance and hard work.
    • With passion and planning, a dream can become a reality - everything is possible.
    • Life is about choice, with choice are consequences ~ choose your course wisely.

  • The Power of Positive Attitude & How It Affects Performance - Neal has always defined himself by what he can imagine - rather than how others would define him and how he sustained his dream in the face of numerous barriers is compelling.

  • The Importance of Realizing Goals: Perseverance & Determination - Overcoming fear and facing danger and the unknown has been central to how Neal approaches his goals and his life. Audiences will walk away understanding the validity for direct correlations between perseverance, determination, motivation, and dedication to achieve any goal.

  • With Choice There Is Consequence - Neal's impact transcends age, gender, and race to promote the creation of leaders, life-long learners, and individuals who are mindful of the consequences their choices will have on personal, familial, community, and generational levels.

  • Change Is Constant: It's How You Play the Cards - Audiences will understand that you have to address the possibility of failure if one wants to achieve great things. His message will connect with audience members' experience facing challenges - sales quotas for instance - that may seem formidable at first - until imagination, innovation and passion are applied.
Journey of a Hope Merchant
Journey of a Hope Merchant: From Apartheid to the Elite World of Solo Yacht Racing

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