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    #1 New York Times Best Seller List and #1 International Best Selling Author, Recipient of The National Jefferson Award

    In a word, Dave Pelzer embodies Esprit: Spirit, Humor & Wit. As a child his resilience enabled him to overcome extreme life-threatening obstacles. As an adult, for over 25 years, Dave’s inspirational work has encouraged countless organizations and millions of individuals to recommit their efforts and remain steadfast to their personal convictions.

    As an adult, Dave’s inspirational work has encouraged countless individuals to recommit their efforts and remain steadfast to their personal convictions.

    Dave has experienced a truly extraordinary life. He nearly died several times by the hands of his mentally disturbed alcoholic mother. Years later it was determined that Dave’s case was identified as one of the most gruesome and extreme cases of child abuse in California ’s then history.

    At age 12 Dave was finally rescued and placed in a series of foster homes until he enlisted in the U.S. Air Force at age 18. Even with all that was against him, Dave was determined to better himself – no matter what the odds.

    As a member of the Armed Forces, Dave was hand-picked to midair refuel the highly secretive SR-71 Blackbird and the F-117 Stealth Fighter, which played a major role in Operations Just Cause, Desert Shield and Desert Storm. While serving on active duty and maintaining a rigorous flight schedule, Dave made time to give of himself. In 1990, Dave was the recipient of the JC Penney Golden Rule Award, making him the California Volunteer of the Year.

    Some of Dave’s distinctive accomplishments have been recognized through a number of prestigious awards, as well as personal commendations from Presidents Reagan, Bush, Clinton and George W. Bush. In 1993, Dave was honored as one of the Ten Outstanding Young Americans. He joins a distinguished group including: John F. Kennedy, Anne Bancroft and Christopher Reeves. In 1994, Dave was the only American to be honored as The Outstanding Young Person of the World! In 1996, he carried the coveted Centennial flame for the Olympic Games. Dave was paid tribute as the recipient of the 2005 National Jefferson Award. Other alumni of this award include Colin Powell, Sandra Day O’Connor and Bob Hope.

    Dave is the author of seven inspirational books. Dave’s latest book, Moving Forward deals with helping people take the lead in their lives. Dave’s first book, A Child Called “It”, was on the New York Times Best Sellers List for over 6 years and Dave’s books have been on the same Best Sellers List approaching 13 years combined. As an author Dave is the first to have four # 1 International Best Sellers and to have four books simultaneously on the New York Times Best Sellers List.

    Dave is a living testament of a self-made man, who as an optimist strongly exudes resilience, service to mankind, personal responsibility and faith in humanity. Dave’s unique and intriguing outlook on life, coupled with his “Robin Williams” like wit and sense of humor entertain and encourage all of us to truly commit to overcome any challenge, while living life to its fullest.

    For over two decades, Dave has dedicated his life helping others . . . to help themselves. While many make excuses and seem pessimistic, Dave carries the banner in a nation where opportunities are endless in what he calls “The Greatness of America.” And through his work, you will too.


Dave Pelzer Speaker Videos Back to top

Do Not Live in Fear


Dave Pelzer Interview on Larry King Live



Speeches / Speaking Engagements Back to top


    Help Yourself:
    Take the Time and Energy to Truly Invest in Your Most Important Asset: Yourself

    Help Yourself is based on the New York Times Business Best Seller and international best-selling book. By taking control, being accountable and having the courage to follow through with a sense of dignity on a daily basis, Help Yourself places a strong emphasis on moving beyond a painful history and innumerable setbacks.

    Having survived a life-threatening childhood, Dave developed a strategy of turning adversity into triumph. Harnessing his adapted skills from his past, Dave teaches these techniques that have helped him to become the acclaimed self-made businessman and humanitarian he is today.

    A majority of individuals have no idea why life has not “provided” for them or that they have little to no idea of what they desire out of life. Dave stresses getting rid of life’s garbage and developing clear obtainable objectives, while maintaining a realistic sense of fulfillment.

    When it comes to conquering insurmountable odds and becoming stronger from the challenge, no one knows more than Dave Pelzer. While interweaving a careful balance of imperative “real life” information and a captivating sense of humor in a storytelling forum, Dave reenergizes the heart and challenges the human spirit in the unique presentation of Help Yourself.

    Suggested Program Length (45 min – 2 hours)

    The Real Heroes
    Purpose: This rare heart-felt program is given by a man whose life was saved by a system that many ridicule as being useless and incompetent. This highly emotional presentation pays tribute to those who have dedicated their lives to making a difference in the life of a child, while at the same time educating the general public of the challenges faced by those in their chosen field.

    Dave carefully weaves the story of how his life was saved by teachers, a school nurse, the police department, social servies and the foster care system. This is the perfect keynote for those within the system who are in need of a positive shot in the arm from a man who, too, has dedicated his life to helping others.

    Throughout the presentation, Dave laces a significant amount of relevant humor to help put the audience at ease, but also stresses the vital importance of advising those at-risk on becoming resilient and being accountable.

    In addition, Dave advises those working in their perspective fields not to become overwhelmed. It is important for them to care for themselves, so they in turn can continue to be a savior and champion of children of our countries: The Real Heroes.

    Objectives:

    • Pay homage to the countless individuals who are on the front lines in their battle to save the children.
    • To instill a sense of pride and positive expectations of those who have suffered, rather than live out a life of despair and negativity.

    (Presentation Length: 1 hour - 1hour 30 minutes)

    Help Yourself for Teens
    For well over ten years and thousands of presentations to various middle schools, high schools and juvenile detention facilities throughout the nation, Dave Pelzer has emphasized a message of accountability and resilience to young adults no matter their past or hardships.

    Having endured one of the worst cases of child abuse in California’s then history and placed in foster care before becoming a counselor at juvenile hall years later, Dave knows all too well the troubles and temptations facing teens today.

    Help Yourself for Teens is a presentation based on a self -titled book which places a strong focus on a pyramid strategy of: developing the habit of addressing one’s problems, identifying the critical importance of decisions made now and where they can lead to in the future and for young adults to aspire on bettering themselves.

    Throughout the presentation Dave incorporates a “Robin Williams” like wit and fast paced sense of humor. While Dave’s program at times is entertaining, his premise is to educate and inspire young adults to become more productive, proactive, and responsible for their own lives.

    Suggested Program Length (45-90 minutes)

    Writers Studio Session
    Overview: As the author of the #1 world-wide best selling book, A Child Called “It”, that was on the New York Times Best Sellers List for well over 6 years, and one of a few authors to have 4 books simultaneously on the New York Times Best Sellers List, Dave knows something about the expansive field of publishing.

    For well over 15 years, Dave has given countless workshops not only on his writing process, but has also revealed the ups and downs of his distinctive publishing career.

    With his own brand of unrivaled humor and his at times serious “see straight though to the end” business like attitude, Dave enthralls writers of all levels.

    Objective: Educate writers on realistic expectations and the pitfalls of the publishing world, as well as, how to best navigate and enhance their own projects when it comes to dealing with agents, working with publishers, editors, and the marketing of their works.





* Please note that while this speaker’s specific speaking fee falls within the range posted above (for Continental U.S. based events), fees are subject to change. For current fee information or international event fees (which are generally 50-75% more than U.S based event fees), please contact us.

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    A Child Called "It": One Child′s Courage to Survive
    by Dave Pelzer
    This book chronicles the unforgettable account of one of the most severe child abuse cases in California history. It is the story of Dave Pelzer, who was brutally beaten and starved by his emotionally unstable, alcoholic mother: a mother who played tortuous, unpredictable games--games that left him nearly dead. He had to learn how to play his mother′s games in order to survive because she no longer considered him a son, but a slave; and no longer a boy, but an "it." Dave′s bed was an old army cot in the basement, and his clothes were torn and raunchy. When his mother allowed him the luxury of food, it was nothing more than spoiled scraps that even the dogs refused to eat. The outside world knew nothing of his living nightmare. He had nothing or no one to turn to, but his dreams kept him alive--dreams of someone taking care of him, loving him and calling him their son.

    Order Here


    A Man Named Dave: A Story of Triumph and Forgiveness
    by Dave Pelzer
    The inspiring conclusion to A Child Called "It" and The Lost Boy.

    "All those years you tried your best to break me, and I′m still here. One day you′ll see, I′m going to make something of myself."--Dave Pelzer, from A Man Named Dave.

    These words were Dave Pelzer′s declaration of independence to his mother, and they represented the ultimate act of self-reliance. Dave′s father never intervened as his mother abused him with shocking brutality, denying him food and clothing, torturing him in any way she could imagine. This was the woman who told her son she could kill him any time she wanted to-and nearly did. The more than two million readers of Pelzer′s previous international bestsellers, A Child Called "It" and The Lost Boy, know that he lived to tell his courageous story. A Man Named Dave is the gripping conclusion to his inspirational trilogy. With stunning generosity of spirit, Dave Pelzer invites readers on his journey to discover how he turned shame into pride and rejection into acceptance.

    Order Here

    The Privilege of Youth: A Teenager′s Story of Longing for Acceptance and Friendship
    by Dave Pelzer
    In The Privilege of Youth, he shares the missing chapter of his life: as a boy on the threshold of adulthood. With sensitivity and insight, he recounts the relentless taunting he endured from bullies; but he also describes the thrill of making his first real friends—some of whom he still shares close relationships with today. He writes about the simple pleasures of exploring his neighborhood, while trying to forget the hell waiting for him at home.

    From high school to a world beyond the four walls that were his prison for so many years, The Privilege of Youth bravely and compassionately charts this crucial turning point in Dave Pelzer’s life and will inspire a whole new generation of readers.

    Order Here

    Help Yourself: Celebrating the Rewards of Resilience and Gratitude
    by Dave Pelzer
    In Help Yourself, Dave Pelzer explains how to move beyond a painful history, harmful negative thoughts, and innumerable setbacks by urging readers to take control and be accountable for their lives. Filled with his own history, as well as the personal struggles of others who have learned how to turn adversity into triumph, Help Yourself is a rousing call to readers who want real answers to real problems..

    Order Here


    Help Yourself:
    Take the Time and Energy to Truly Invest in Your Most Important Asset: Yourself

    Help Yourself is based on the New York Times Business Best Seller and international best-selling book. By taking control, being accountable and having the courage to follow through with a sense of dignity on a daily basis, Help Yourself places a strong emphasis on moving beyond a painful history and innumerable setbacks.

    Having survived a life-threatening childhood, Dave developed a strategy of turning adversity into triumph. Harnessing his adapted skills from his past, Dave teaches these techniques that have helped him to become the acclaimed self-made businessman and humanitarian he is today.

    A majority of individuals have no idea why life has not “provided” for them or that they have little to no idea of what they desire out of life. Dave stresses getting rid of life’s garbage and developing clear obtainable objectives, while maintaining a realistic sense of fulfillment.

    When it comes to conquering insurmountable odds and becoming stronger from the challenge, no one knows more than Dave Pelzer. While interweaving a careful balance of imperative “real life” information and a captivating sense of humor in a storytelling forum, Dave reenergizes the heart and challenges the human spirit in the unique presentation of Help Yourself.

    Suggested Program Length (45 min – 2 hours)

    The Real Heroes
    Purpose: This rare heart-felt program is given by a man whose life was saved by a system that many ridicule as being useless and incompetent. This highly emotional presentation pays tribute to those who have dedicated their lives to making a difference in the life of a child, while at the same time educating the general public of the challenges faced by those in their chosen field.

    Dave carefully weaves the story of how his life was saved by teachers, a school nurse, the police department, social servies and the foster care system. This is the perfect keynote for those within the system who are in need of a positive shot in the arm from a man who, too, has dedicated his life to helping others.

    Throughout the presentation, Dave laces a significant amount of relevant humor to help put the audience at ease, but also stresses the vital importance of advising those at-risk on becoming resilient and being accountable.

    In addition, Dave advises those working in their perspective fields not to become overwhelmed. It is important for them to care for themselves, so they in turn can continue to be a savior and champion of children of our countries: The Real Heroes.

    Objectives:

    • Pay homage to the countless individuals who are on the front lines in their battle to save the children.
    • To instill a sense of pride and positive expectations of those who have suffered, rather than live out a life of despair and negativity.

    (Presentation Length: 1 hour - 1hour 30 minutes)

    Help Yourself for Teens
    For well over ten years and thousands of presentations to various middle schools, high schools and juvenile detention facilities throughout the nation, Dave Pelzer has emphasized a message of accountability and resilience to young adults no matter their past or hardships.

    Having endured one of the worst cases of child abuse in California’s then history and placed in foster care before becoming a counselor at juvenile hall years later, Dave knows all too well the troubles and temptations facing teens today.

    Help Yourself for Teens is a presentation based on a self -titled book which places a strong focus on a pyramid strategy of: developing the habit of addressing one’s problems, identifying the critical importance of decisions made now and where they can lead to in the future and for young adults to aspire on bettering themselves.

    Throughout the presentation Dave incorporates a “Robin Williams” like wit and fast paced sense of humor. While Dave’s program at times is entertaining, his premise is to educate and inspire young adults to become more productive, proactive, and responsible for their own lives.

    Suggested Program Length (45-90 minutes)

    Writers Studio Session
    Overview: As the author of the #1 world-wide best selling book, A Child Called “It”, that was on the New York Times Best Sellers List for well over 6 years, and one of a few authors to have 4 books simultaneously on the New York Times Best Sellers List, Dave knows something about the expansive field of publishing.

    For well over 15 years, Dave has given countless workshops not only on his writing process, but has also revealed the ups and downs of his distinctive publishing career.

    With his own brand of unrivaled humor and his at times serious “see straight though to the end” business like attitude, Dave enthralls writers of all levels.

    Objective: Educate writers on realistic expectations and the pitfalls of the publishing world, as well as, how to best navigate and enhance their own projects when it comes to dealing with agents, working with publishers, editors, and the marketing of their works.



Do Not Live in Fear


Dave Pelzer Interview on Larry King Live