John O'Leary

  • Award-Winning Motivational Speaker, Burn Survivor & Author of On Fire: The 7 Choices to Ignite a Radically Inspired Life

John O'Leary was nine years old when he accidentally set a massive explosion in his home and was only given a one percent chance to live. Today, he is an award-winning motivational speaker. He is consistently given industry-defying gold stars across the board for his emotional storytelling, genuine humor and ability to empower his audiences to take back their lives and change their world. John intimately illustrates how the greatest challenges can be transformed into outstanding growth. His presentations are described as “captivating, amazing and life-changing.” 

 
  

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I wanted to thank you again for speaking to us. More than two months after your speech we are still talking about you and how wonderful your speech was.

A Sample of the Groups That Have Hosted John O'Leary
  • Emergency Nurses Association (ENA)
  • Midland National Life Insurance Company
  • West County Chamber of Commerce
  • Northern Illinois University
  • Pricewaterhouse Coopers
  • Accenture
  • Delta Gamma Center for the Blind
  • Blevins School
  • Federal Reserve Bank
  • Bestway Travel
John O'Leary's Keynote: The Power of One - Get Sharable Link
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Ignite Your Life

In this presentation, John inspires audiences to look deeply within themselves, discover who they are, the talents they possess, the challenges they’ve endured, and their ability to grow through adversity. Through this program, audiences are ignited with a life full of possibility not yet even ...

In this presentation, John inspires audiences to look deeply within themselves, discover who they are, the talents they possess, the challenges they’ve endured, and their ability to grow through adversity. Through this program, audiences are ignited with a life full of possibility not yet even imagined! 

What might happen if you embraced your scars, mistakes, and missteps —and utilized the lessons learned to propel you forward? What impact could you have if you worked in perfect symphony with your team — and created an impact far greater than any single individual? How significant would your life be if you discovered passion and meaning in your life — and tapped into the resulting increase in energy, persistence and creativity?

John O’Leary powerfully reveals how our greatest challenges can be transformed into the foundation for outstanding growth. Through emotional story-telling and great humor, John empowers audiences to carefully consider how they can author a legacy of significance. The three critical components include:

Personal Awareness: Identify who I am, strengths and weaknesses, and roles I’ve accepted

Clarity of Purpose: Discover personal mission; then inspire others toward excellence

Personal Mastery: Freedom to choose the pathway which leads to significance

The Power of One

Journey with John O’Leary as he powerfully celebrates the possibility of how you can serve, love and impact more profoundly in your own life. Personal accountability involves every aspect of our lives—our thoughts, actions, behaviors, and values. John reveals how pride in one’s ow ...

Journey with John O’Leary as he powerfully celebrates the possibility of how you can serve, love and impact more profoundly in your own life. 

Personal accountability involves every aspect of our lives — our thoughts, actions, behaviors, and values. John reveals how pride in one’s own life wildly impacts others personally and professionally. Of critical importance here is discovering that personal accountability and significant results in life don’t come from a better spouse, different job, or new manager — they are only realized from within.

Be Light: Shining with Faith

Today’s world can seem so dark. We are too often reminded of the pain and disappointment in our everyday lives. Health, financial, and relational challenges impact all who live in this imperfect, fallen world Our faith doesn’t offer the guarantee of avoiding adversity, but instead the p ...

Today’s world can seem so dark. We are too often reminded of the pain and disappointment in our everyday lives. Health, financial, and relational challenges impact all who live in this imperfect, fallen world

Our faith doesn’t offer the guarantee of avoiding adversity, but instead the promise of a loving God who suffers with us in our pain, celebrates with us in our joy, and invites us into an eternal relationship with Him.

In this presentation, John O’Leary illustrates the incredible power of love, gratitude, forgiveness, purpose, courage and resilience. John reminds us that Jesus Christ calls us to be his living presence — to bring light to this dark world. This program will empower you to shine your light of faith for all to see!

Healthcare

As a former trauma patient and hospital chaplain, John O’Leary is a popular speaker choice for hospital systems, healthcare associations and medical/EMS conferences around the world. John understands the healthcare profession demands quality individuals dedicated to the service of patients an ...

As a former trauma patient and hospital chaplain, John O’Leary is a popular speaker choice for hospital systems, healthcare associations and medical/EMS conferences around the world. 

John understands the healthcare profession demands quality individuals dedicated to the service of patients and families — in an environment often filled with limited resources and exhaustive schedules. Sharing from his personal experience as a burn victim, John reveals the difference between curing and healing patients. In addition, John will reignite participants’ passion for their healthcare careers — illustrating the crucial role they have in the patients they serve and the departments they work with.

For Students and Schools

From student assemblies to faculty in-service retreats, John inspires audiences to fully realize the possibility of how one can serve, love and impact more profoundly. John’s youth presentations focuses on celebrating individual uniqueness, the power of everyday heroes, and developing strong ...

From student assemblies to faculty in-service retreats, John inspires audiences to fully realize the possibility of how one can serve, love and impact more profoundly. 

John’s youth presentations focuses on celebrating individual uniqueness, the power of everyday heroes, and developing strong character. John’s humor and story-telling mesmerizes student audiences and empowers them to make a positive difference in the lives they lead at school and at home. This one program may be the most important gift you provide your students, your staff, and yourself this year!

Safety

As John O’Leary so intimately knows, one poor decision can dramatically affect the rest of your life. This poor decision not only impacts the life of the individual injured, it also impacts their entire family, organization and community. Leading the mission to eliminate all employee accident ...

As John O’Leary so intimately knows, one poor decision can dramatically affect the rest of your life. This poor decision not only impacts the life of the individual injured, it also impacts their entire family, organization and community. 

Leading the mission to eliminate all employee accidents, John challenges audiences in manufacturing and utilities to improve their safety by personal accountability — one employee, one decision at a time. While many safety programs focus on what not to do in order to not get injured, John O’Leary focuses on what to do in order to work safe, lead others, and thrive in life.

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Biography

In 1987, John was a curious nine-year-old boy. Playing with fire and gasoline, John created a massive explosion in his home and was burned on 98% of his body. He was given one percent chance to survive.

John’s experience, previously kept private, was showcased when his parents wrote the book, Overwhelming Odds, to share with family and friends as a thank you for their support during this journey. The book led to organizations around the world requesting to hear first-hand from John how he defied the odds. A movement began.

John, recognizing his calling to be a change agent of hope and overcoming adversity, continues to ignite life – and the world around him – with possibility.

John is consistently given industry-defying gold stars across the board for his emotional storytelling, genuine humor and ability to empower his audiences to take back their lives and change their world. John intimately illustrates how the greatest challenges can be transformed into outstanding growth. His presentations are described as “captivating, amazing and life-changing.” John was honored with the Members’ Choice Speaker Award, 2011 from Vistage International.

John is a business owner, writer, international speaker, husband and father of four. Every year, John shares his message with more than 120 organizations in healthcare, sales, marketing, financial services, education and safety. John provides keynote presentations, breakout sessions, half, full-day and online workshops and weekend retreats.