Joan Lunden Profile

  • One of the most recognizable faces in journalism, Lunden was the host of Good Morning America for almost 2 decades.

  • Lunden documented her journey with triple-negative breast cancer raising awareness about early detection and wellness via national television, social media, and her site

  • Lunden is a prominent speaker on care giving and healthy aging, drawing from her experience as a caretaker for her late mother.
  • Award-winning journalist and breast cancer survivor, Joan Lunden has been one of the nation’s most trusted voices and personalities for over 30 years. The author of 8 books, the former Good Morning America anchor has used her visible career to raise awareness and build supportive networks for cancer patients and working women balancing their careers with family. Through her speaking, online presence, and advocacy she continues to bring the latest tips and findings to the general public so that they can create a healthy lifestyle for a better tomorrow.

    As host of Good Morning America for nearly 2 decades, Lunden brought insight to top issues for millions of Americans each day. The longest running host ever on early morning television, she reported from 26 countries, covered 4 presidents, 5 Olympics, and kept Americans up-to-date on how to care for their health, their families, and their homes.

    In 2014 Lunden publicly announced her battle with triple-negative breast cancer and documented her treatment on her video blog on Declared cancer free in 2015, she has made it her mission to share her battle and the transformative effect it has had on her life, in her book Had I Known and through her online channel ALIVE with Joan, a resource and platform for women surviving and living with breast cancer. Every day, women visit Lunden’s website for helpful information about cancer, health, wellness, lifestyle tips, family and boomer information.

    Being a part of the sandwich generation Lunden’s demographic is far-reaching. She, like many Boomers in America is a working mother (of 7 including two young sets of twins, ages 9 & 11), and has cared for an aging parent; so she truly understands the stresses women face today. Lunden brings that experience to all her projects, whether they focus on parenting, healthy aging, family caregiving, or health & wellness. She is the spokesperson for the nation’s leading senior referral service, A Place for Mom and in the past has served as spokesperson for several other organizations including The American Heart Association, Mothers Against Drunk Driving, and The American Lung Association.

    • View Extended/Alternate Bio

      An award-winning journalist, bestselling author, television host, and motivational speaker, Joan Lunden has been a trusted voice in American homes for more than 40 years. For nearly two decades, Lunden greeted viewers each morning on Good Morning America making her the longest running female host ever on early morning television.

      Lunden continues to be one of America’s most recognized and trusted personalities which has made her a sought-after speaker for events across the country. As an ardent health & senior advocate, Lunden has testified before the Food and Drug Administration advocating mandatory mammogram reporting and the Congressional House Ways and Means Committee advocating for the Family and Medical Leave Act.

      Lunden is the host of the host the PBS television series, Second Opinion with Joan Lunden and the Washington Post Podcast series, Caring for Tomorrow on the future of healthcare. Lunden is also the ambassador to the Poynter Institute’s MediaWise for Seniors program which educates individuals over 50 on media literacy – separating fact from fiction online.

      As a part of the sandwich generation, Lunden’s demographic is far-reaching. She is a mother of 7 including two sets of teenage twins. Like many Boomers in America, she has juggled being a working mom while caring for an aging parent and brings this experience to her role as an active advocate for seniors.

      One of the most visible women in America, Lunden has graced the covers of more than 60 magazines and book covers. Lunden’s newest book, Why Did I Come into This Room: A Candid Conversation About Aging quickly became a New York Times Best Seller.

      In June of 2014, Lunden was diagnosed with triple negative breast cancer. An eternal optimist, she turned her diagnosis into an opportunity to become an advocate and help others. She chronicled her experience in her memoir Had I Known. Lunden continues to interact with American’s daily on her website, as well as her social media platforms. Lunden has served as national spokesperson for various organizations such as the American Heart Association, Mothers Against Drunk Driving, American Lung Association, American Red Cross, American Academy of Pediatrics, and the Colon Cancer Alliance.

      Joan Lunden’s books include Why Did I Come into This Room: A Candid Conversation About Aging; Had I Known; Chicken Soup for the Soul: Family Caregiving; Growing Up Healthy: Protecting Your Child from Diseases Now Through Adulthood; Wake-Up Calls; A Bend in the Road is Not the End of the Road; Joan Lunden’s Healthy Living; Joan Lunden’s Healthy Cooking; Mother’s Minutes; Your Newborn Baby; and Good Morning, I’m Joan Lunden.

      Joan Lunden truly exemplifies today’s modern working woman.

    Joan Lunden Speaking Videos

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    Joan Lunden's Speech Descriptions

    In her refreshingly straightforward but warm style, Joan Lunden shares the candid advice that has motivated her throughout her career, inspiring audiences to take charge of their health, their happiness, and their success. Known best as one the nation’s most trusted reporters, Joan is also a breast care survivor, a former caregiver to her late mother, and a woman who has balanced a high profile career with raising a family of seven children. She offers realistic insights and memorable advice on how to live a full and vibrant life while meeting the challenges that arise in professional life, family life, and often our own health and wellbeing.

    A Bend in the Road is not the End of the Road

    Joan speaks frequently on the topics of motivation, inspiration and change. Leaving her seat on Good Morning America after two decades, making her the longest-running morning show host ever, Joan had to deal with reinventing herself in front of millions of Americans. She has toured with Tony Robbins sharing her "10 Positive Principles for Dealing with Change."
    The Ten Best Secrets to Success

    Joan shares her personal story of making it to the top of the tough television news business as well as how she reinvented herself launching her own Smart&Simple Solution brand on QVC. Joan also discusses what she’s learned from highly successful business tycoons to U.S. Presidents that she’s interviewed over her three decades as a journalist. As one of the most well-known working moms in the country, Joan also talks about balancing home and family: how to keep your family values, still have dinner together and have “non-texting” family time all the while being a successful working woman.

    The Secrets To Living Younger Longer

    With three best-selling books on health; Healthy Cooking, Healthy Living and Growing up Healthy, Joan is constantly asked how she remains so young and vibrant. In this personal and motivational talk, Joan shares what she’s learned from the experts she’s interviewed and how she stays at the top of her game.

    Now That We Have It All, How Do We Do it All?

    On the topic of women′s changing roles and balancing work and family, Joan shares her personal story as one of the first women in America to bring her baby to work when she became the host of Good Morning America, setting a trend for corporations across the country. Joan takes a historical look at how life has changed dramatically for women in America over the past few decades, from her interviews with women’s activist Gloria Steinem to Betty Freidan on her social-changing book The Feminine Mystique to Gail Sheehy on the passages of women’s lives. Joan explores some of the new challenges women face holding down jobs outside the home while caring for their families, in this national debate about women′s roles that is still going strong today.

    America’s Next Health Crisis; Caring for Our Aging Parents as People Live Longer Than Ever Before

    66 million Americans are caregivers for someone they love, and that is 30% of the U.S. population. Some experts are predicting that figure will triple over the next decade. A longer life expectancy has led to an increased demand for family members to serve as caregivers. Caregiving can be a demanding, stressful and seemingly thankless job and often devastates families economically. It is without doubt this is the next health crisis facing our country.

    Joan shares her personal experience of caring for her 93 year old mother while still working and raising young children. We all know that the day will come when we have to deal with the demise of parent, a spouse or another family member. There is no escaping this aspect of life; however many find it difficult to discuss end-of-life issues. However Joan does just that as host of RLTV’s Taking Care with Joan Lunden, a program about family caregiving, and also as co-author of the soon-to-be-released Chicken Soup for the Soul; Family Caregivers. Joan discusses her seven secrets to success for caregivers.

    I Was Not Born Blonde or Jewish

    A personal account of moving East to the Big Apple, making it in the media and converting to Judaism, all choices that played a part in shaping Joan’s life. This is a humorous yet inspirational discussion about how one’s life choices can bring them happiness.

    Had I Known

    Former host of Good Morning America, health advocate, international speaker, mother of seven, grandmother of one and New York Times bestselling author, Joan Lunden, speaks candidly about her battle against breast cancer and her quest to learn about it and teach others, and the transformative effect it has had on her life.

    With a large extended family counting on her, giving up was not an option. After announcing her diagnosis of Stage 2 Triple Negative Breast Cancer on Good Morning America,, people all over the country rallied around Joan as she went into warrior mode. Joan appeared on the cover of People Magazine bald, showing the world her brave resolve and that breast cancer does not need to define you.

    Joan’s illness has changed her in profoundly unexpected ways and has redefined her values and most of all, her health. Following a new clean and healthy way of eating, Joan became her best advocate by taking control of her nutrition, which helped combat the adverse side effects of chemotherapy like a warrior.

    Uncharacteristically vulnerable, irreverent and straight from the heart, this presentation is a deeply personal and powerful story of pain, persistence, and perseverance in which Joan openly evaluates her decision to go public with her battle, shaving her head, wig shopping, re-connecting with her viewers, rediscovering her purpose, and ultimately realizing that sometimes you have to look back to move forward.

    Joan also speaks on:

    • My Breast Cancer Journey.
    • From Career to Caregiving and Everything in Between
    • Embracing Change: The New Reality for Your Family's Future
    • Fostering Leadership and Achieving Dreams
    • My Journey From Small Town Sacramento to The Big Apple

    Joan Lunden on Speaking

    I’m probably the best living example that you can turn a complete total fear into a complete total passion, because that’s what’s happened to my life.

    SPEAKING.COM:: What inspired you to start doing speaking engagements?

    LUNDEN: It’s so funny that I ended up with speaking being such a huge part of my career today because when I was hosting Good Morning America, I used to get asked all the time to speak. Usually we had to go to accept an award and of course, there’s an acceptance speech. I was always looking to get out of it because I used to be really terrified of getting up in front of an audience.

    My friends used to say, “Wait a minute. How can that be? Millions and millions of people see you everyday. How can you be frightened from just a few hundred or a few thousand?”

    To which I always answered, “But I don’t see any of them. It’s just you and the camera and your stage director.”

    So when I left Good Morning America, I decided that I needed to get over this fear. I signed up to go on tour with Tony Robbins for two years. The first speech we went to, there was probably 22,000 people in the audience in a big arena in Detroit where they play basketball. It was almost surreal for me walking out on the stage, but little by little, I got more comfortable with it. I’m probably the best living example that you can turn a complete total fear into a complete total passion, because that’s what’s happened to my life; today, I give 30 to 40 speeches a year. I don’t get nervous for them, I love writing them and I love giving them. I love every aspect of it.

    SPEAKING.COM: What is some advice you have for people who are nervous about speaking?

    LUNDEN: “Take a big deep breath and think low and slow.” That’s actually some advice I received from an anchor when I started out my career doing the weather in the 1970s. After one of my very first appearances, the anchor said, “You get so nervous that it’s like somebody wound you up in the back like a little doll and your voice goes up high and you’re talking so fast. Just keep thinking low and slow.” I share this with people sometimes because they can get nervous just going into a board meeting or having to give a presentation.

    The other thing is that I’m a homework junkie; every time I’m going to go to give a speech or to make an appearance, I go online and I study about that organization and I study anything that will help me understand so that I’ll never get caught short. Once you feel totally comfortable like that, it kinda takes away all the nervousness.

    When I do commencement speeches at colleges, I tell graduates that they live in this time of incredible information and if they’re going to go on a job interview, they have no excuse not to look up that company and find out what they’ve been doing, what their programs are, any issues they’re having, etc. Today a young person has the ability to walk into an interview and give all kinds of ideas of how they think they could be helpful to a company. It’s about being prepared and really being passionate about what you’re going to be talking about.

    I speak in areas that are authentic to me, like care giving and care taking for instance, because after going through that with mother and making a lot of mistakes along the way, I felt, “Other people shouldn’t have to make these mistakes, everybody should have a plan and I’m gonna help them make a plan”.

    SPEAKING.COM: What do you want people to learn and take away from your presentations?

    LUNDEN: After speeches or at book signings, women come up to me and they tell me that I inspired them to get a mammogram or to lose weight or push through whatever it was that they were kind of stuck in.

    Women on social media sometimes say, “I heard you speak and thank goodness I saw you that day, I went and got a mammogram and I got diagnosed with cancer, but it’s early enough that we caught it and I have a good prognosis.”

    To me that means that I’m making my mark on this world, and I think that, it kind of puts the gas in my tank to go on to the next speech. I speak in areas that are authentic to me, like care giving and care taking for instance, because after going through that with mother and making a lot of mistakes along the way, I felt, “Other people shouldn’t have to make these mistakes, everybody should have a plan and I’m gonna help them make a plan”.

    Sometimes too, I just enjoy sharing my career with audiences. I’m one of those people that’s really good at a cocktail party, because after having three decades of going live from 27 countries and covering five presidents, I have a lot of behind-the-scene stories to tell and it’s fun for me to be able to entertain an audience.

    SPEAKING.COM: What types of audiences do you think would most benefit from your message?

    LUNDEN: Quite honestly, I think any audience, because I tailor my speeches to fit the audience at any given event, just to make sure that my messaging is specific and meaningful to them. Overall, my message is always inspirational and empowering.

    I’ve also spoken to many business events, talking about all of the secrets of success that I’ve learned from people along the way, because in my profession you get the opportunity to interview anybody who is anybody, from world leaders to sports stars, from entertainment celebrities to amazing business tycoons that founded iconic companies. I’ve gone back through all those interviews and I’ve looked for those little gems that come from their knowledge and their experience of building a business, a huge business out of nothing. I have fun talking about seizing opportunities, a willingness to take risks, finding good mentors, staying motivated, re-inventing yourself, and just the power of saying, “Yes” – which is actually a page from my playbook.

    People often say, “Gosh you had such an incredible life. How did that happen?” It happened because when people ask me if I can do something I just say “yes”, and then I go figure out how to do it. That’s how I have built this amazing career. Exclusive Interview with Joan Lunden
    How to Live a Happy and Healthy Life, with Joan Lunden
    In this exclusive interview with SPEAKING.COM, Joan Lunden discusses:
  • How longer life expectancy is causing the Baby Boomers to reinvent themselves.
  • What you need to know and understand to make your later years healthy years.
  • Taking care of aging parents. Read the Full Interview
  • "The 76 million boomers out there like me, have to start planning for the kind of future we want because otherwise, someone else will decide what we get. "
    - Joan Lunden

    What People are Saying about Seeing Joan Speak

    Rating Entries

    “Joan was a true professional, but very accommodating. She was considering changing her flight to ensure that she greeted and signed every book for each person that was waiting in line. She even took photographs with each person – out attendees loved her!”
    Illinois Association of School Boards (Engagement booked through

    “Joan is a perfect mix of intelligence, thoughtful advice, and inspiration mixed with great humor!”
    Ann Cameron, Girl Scouts of Western Oklahoma (Engagement booked through

    “We received a lot of positive feedback from everyone in attendance and we were absolutely thrilled with how the session went. You were a truly captivating speaker and provided us all with a lot of life lessons and advice that will stick with us for life.”
    Abigail Flora, Stanford GSB Women in Management MBA Candidate (Engagement booked through

    “Joan was wonderful – her presentation was very well received and the entire audience was moved by her words of encouragement, experience and wisdom.”
    National Breast Cancer Foundation (Engagement booked through

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    Books by Joan Lunden:

    Why Did I Come into This Room?: A Candid Conversation about Aging

    Why Did I Come into This Room? is a funny “What to Expect When You’re Expecting” for the aging woman.

    “I’m too old for Snapchat, but too young for Life Alert.”

    In her most candid and revealing book yet, acclaimed broadcast journalist and Baby Boomer Joan Lunden delves into the various phases of aging that leave many feeling uncomfortable, confused, and on edge. In her hilarious book, Lunden takes the dull and depressing out of aging, replacing it with wit and humor. After all, laughing is better than crying—unless it makes you pee! Whether you’re in your 40s, 50s, 60s, or more, this book is full of helpful information to embrace—or at least prepare for—the inevitable.

    Funny, captivating, and raw, no topic is off limits. Lunden goes where others fear to tread, openly talking about wrinkles and age spots (which Lunden insists are sunspots), expanding waistlines (no, you didn’t shrink your jeans), diminished energy (my get-up-and-go got up and went), weak pelvic floors (yes, we’re talking about leaking), hot flashes (they suck), disrupted sleep (the morning host is an expert on lack of sleep), changes in sex drive (oh yeah, she goes there), ageism (it exists and it pisses us off), and yes, the real reasons we suddenly find ourselves always searching for those car keys!

    Through her poignant and often laugh out loud funny personal experiences, Lunden candidly shares her anxieties and breakthroughs and how she’s coping with the realities of aging. She’s talking about the good, the bad and the ugly, elevating the conversation on topics often considered “taboo.”

    Why Did I Come into This Room? also explores the science of aging, including how it impacts the body and brain, while dispelling myths and revealing useful options to stave off the aging process as long as possible.

    Even more importantly, Lunden goes beyond the physical aspects of aging by closely examining the mental and emotional minefields that come with our advancing years. As she explores the value of asking ourselves important questions including, “Am I still relevant?”, “Do I have meaningful friendships?”, and “Am I leaving an impactful legacy?” Lunden also examines the freedom in “letting go,” the importance of managing stress, and how joy and a sense of purpose all play an impactful role in slowing the aging process.

    In a society where youth is revered and aging feared, Why Did I Come into This Room? is the long-awaited tell-it-like-it-is guide for women of all ages. As Lunden says, “Aging ain’t for sissies…you better be prepared.”

    Chicken Soup for the Soul: Family Caregivers: 101 Stories of Love, Sacrifice, and Bonding

    Do you have a family member who requires constant care? You are not alone. This collection offers support and encouragement in its 101 stories for family caregivers of all ages, including the “sandwich” generation caring for a family member while raising their children. With stories by those on the receiving end of the care too. These stories of love, sacrifice, and lessons will inspire and uplift family members making sacrifices to make sure their loved ones are well cared for, whether in their own homes or elsewhere.

    Order Here

    Growing Up Healthy

    Whether you′re expecting a child, are the parent of a newborn, a toddler, a school-aged child, or an adolescent…if they′re under your guidance you still have a chance to offer them the gift of a healthy, disease-free life.

    We as parents have it within our power to help protect our children from disease and very possibly lengthen their lives. By paying careful attention to the foods our children are eating, by teaching them about nutrition and making some important alterations in their diets, we can become take-action parents on the front lines against future illness.

    Growing Up Healthy contains the lifesaving knowledge we all need to shield our children from disease and help them grow into strong, fit adults. Based on groundbreaking research that shows the link between childhood nutrition and chronic illness in later years, this landmark book shows how feeding our children right during the years when their young bodies are growing can lessen and even prevent their risk of developing many debilitating and deadly chronic adult diseases — obesity, heart disease and stroke, high blood pressure, Type II diabetes, osteoporosis, and cancer.

    In Growing Up Healthy, Joan Lunden, one of America′s most trusted journalists and most visible working moms, teams up with Dr. Myron Winick, a leading expert in childhood nutrition, to produce a guide that shows how to feed our children from birth through adolescence; how to teach our children good health and eating habits; how to protect them from the ravages of so-called “adult diseases”; and how to add quality years to our children′s life span.

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