208 Seconds: A Lifetime of Lessons
Capt. Sully's story is one of dedication, hope, and preparedness, revealing the important lessons he learned through his life, in his military service, and in his work as an airline pilot. In this riveting presentation, he shares details from the 208 seconds that put his entire career on the line. He reminds audiences, even in these days of conflict, tragedy and uncertainty, there are values still worth fighting for—that life's challenges can be met if we're ready for them. Are you ready to aspire to new levels of excellence in life and business?
Leading Your Team to Success
How you prepare, train and lead make all the difference when you are confronted with a challenge. Capt. Sully’s life-long pursuit of learning and investing in himself shows the importance of education and preparedness, and illustrates that true leaders must always lead by example. In this presentation, Capt. Sully will challenge and inspire teams to establish a foundation of passion for their work, build trust in each other, and commit to always reaching for the highest standards.
Making A Difference
Capt. Sully's stellar reputation as a leader was built over many years - one interaction, one person, one day at a time. In this presentation he shares how each of us has an opportunity to "make a difference," and that every day offers us numerous opportunities to be better and do better.
Captain Sullenberger garners tweets of praise at back-to-back events
Famed pilot CAPTAIN SULLY SULLENBERGER, who became an international hero after the emergency landing of Flight 1549 on the Hudson River, is in-demand and wowing audiences worldwide. He recently addressed 10,000 attendees at the Fundacion Telemex and 750 attendees at the Missouri Hospital Association's Annual Convention, delivering powerful insights on leadership, preparedness, and leading a life of excellence. Audiences at both events kept the tweets of praise rolling in, such as: "Very inspired by @CaptSully at the #MHA conference today!"; "Highly inspiring presentation by @CaptSully at #MSXXI. History of heroism and humanity"; "A hero! Chesley Sullenberger at #MSXXI. What a great speech!" A smash hit at each of his engagements, Captain Sullenberger is heralded for captivating keynotes that are as informative as they are riveting. One of the most compelling heroes of our time, Sullenberger lives by the credo "leadership by personal example," using his position to foster change and meaningful dialogue. Just recently he penned a moving op-ed in The Washington Post and made headlines in the Associated Press in anticipation of "The Miracle on the Hudson's" 10th anniversary on January 15, 2019.
Captain Sullenberger delivers a powerful call to action in crucial Washington Post op-ed
CAPTAIN SULLY SULLENBERGER, the famed pilot who became an international hero after the emergency landing of Flight 1549 on the Hudson River, wrote an urgent and moving must-read op-ed in The Washington Post. Entitled “We saved 155 lives on the Hudson. Now let’s vote for leaders who’ll protect us all.” Captain Sullenberger reflects on the lessons he learned as captain of the “Miracle on the Hudson,” and how they apply to our democracy today. As Captain Sullenberger writes: “To navigate complex challenges, all leaders must take responsibility and have a moral compass grounded in competence, integrity and concern for the greater good.” A unifying call to action, Captain Sullenberger underscores the shared facts, humanity and ideals that bind us together as a nation. He condemns the current toxic political environment and inspires all of us to put country over party. “We cannot wait for someone to save us. We must do it ourselves,” Sullenberger writes, “This Election Day is a crucial opportunity to again demonstrate the best in each of us by doing our duty and voting for leaders who are committed to the values that will unite and protect us.” Sullenberger’s empowering message resonates. His op-ed instantly became a “Most-Read” and racked up over 1,000 comments of praise such as: “Facil with flight and with words. This is such a wise, seasoned and mature call to action. Thank you,” and “This piece is about the only thing that brought (positive) tears to my eyes in the last two years.”
Read Captain Sullenberger's Washington Post op-ed >>
Captain Sullenberger is a leading public safety expert
A highly in-demand speaker thanks to his captivating messages on leadership, preparedness, and decision-making in times of crisis, Captain Sullenberger is a leading public safety expert who uses his position to foster change and meaningful dialogue. Captain Sullenberger has been dedicated to the pursuit of safety for his entire adult life, and while he is internationally renowned for serving as captain during “The Miracle on The Hudson,” his lessons on leadership, preparation, and safety extend far beyond the world of aviation. Following the tragic Las Vegas shooting, Captain Sullenberger posted a moving op-ed, “We Must Do More Than Grieve,” urging for concrete and common-sense political action. Another one of his posts, "We Are at a Crossroads; Will We Choose Safety?," highlights the importance of maintaining current regulations in order to save human lives. Named to the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Advisory Committee, Captain Sullenberger has been sought-out as an expert to ensure public safety in the age of technological advancements such as autonomous vehicles. The recipient of countless awards—he was ranked second in TIME's "Top 100 Most Influential Heroes and Icons of 2009” and was awarded the French Legion of Honour—Captain Sullenberger channels his expertise and passion into powerful keynotes that reveal how to achieve the highest levels of safety through effective crisis management, and continuous learning, leadership, and culture. Earning stellar reviews at each of his engagements, recent feedback from Captain Sullenberger’s keynotes include the following: “There was not one sound in the room the entire time that he spoke... When you book a speaking engagement with Captain Sullenberger, you will definitely get more than your money’s worth" (Cox Media Group); "Rave reviews from audience members included: 'So timely, so powerful, so authentic.;' 'Great work. This will leave a mark!’; 'We more than loved him. He speaks our language’" (Boston Children’s Hospital).
Captain Sullenberger keeps the tweets of praise rolling in at Commvault GO
Captain SULLY SULLENBERGER captivated an audience of some 1,500 industry thought leaders and executives with his information-packed and riveting keynote at Commvault GO, a leading digital transformation conference that focused on the power of data. Drawing on his experience conducting an emergency landing of US Airways Flight 1549, Captain Sullenberger revealed how data was key in framing his decision-making, translating his thought-process and expertise into life lessons for all audience-members regardless of their situation or occupation. Captain Sullenberger’s presentation was so impactful, it inspired many in the audience to take to Twitter to share their motivation and praise, such as: “Been fortunate to hear many great and inspirational speakers over the years, but this may be the best one”; “I have the opportunity to hear @CaptSully speak, and to say that he is an inspiration wouldn’t even begin to cover it…”; “@CaptSully illustrated his #EverydayRemarkable at #CommvaultGO. Truly remarkable and an honor to hear his story”; “Well @CaptSully just gave one of the best keynotes I have ever heard”; “The @CaptSully keynote ends with a well-deserved standing ovation. Polished, informative, and engaging”; “Well there’s a reason @CaptSully was up last. No one can follow that.”
Captain Sullenberger brings the house down with inspiring Smartsheet Engage keynote
As the keynote of Smartsheet’s inaugural global customer conference—Smartsheet Engage 2017—Capt. SULLY SULLENBERGER addressed a standing room only crowd of over 1,000 attendees, sharing insights on leadership, decision-making, teamwork, and more. Highlights from Captain Sullenberger’s smash hit speech, which drew multiple standing ovations, were showcased in a GeekWire article, including his thoughts on innovation, the importance of critical thinking, and his unique, personal insights into his miraculous emergency landing of US Airways Flight 1549 on the Hudson River. As the article started, “Just a second while I pick my jaw up off the floor.” Captain Sullenberger’s keynote also received lots of praise on Twitter, inspiring tweets like: “Thank you to @Captsully for delivering such a moving and inspiring keynote at #SmartsheetENGAGE this morning”; “@Captsully Thank you for speaking at @Smartsheet #SmartsheetENGAGE One of those experiences in my life/career I'll never forget”; “A privilege to hear @Captsully at #SmartsheetENGAGE talking preparedness and what is really important in life”; “Standing ovation for @Captsully before delivering most amazing and inspiring keynote @Smartsheet.” Sought-out by companies and organizations of all industries for his transformative advice, Captain Sullenberger frequently makes headlines for his expertise in the areas of leadership, safety, crisis management, and more. Just recently, Media Planet highlighted Captain Sullenberger’s work as a thought leader and advocate for issues related to safety within the aviation industry, and BBC Radio conducted an in-depth, fascinating interview with him on the “Miracle on the Hudson.”
Captain Sullenberger surprises doctor and patient in remarkable ABC 20/20 recovery story
In an inspiring ABC 20/20 episode that chronicles the remarkable story of how a Hollywood mogul battles back from the brink of death, Captain SULLY SULLENBERGER makes a unique surprise appearance. The 20/20 episode tells the story of Jonathan Koch, a reality TV executive who after falling unexpectedly ill, suffers irreversible damage to his limbs resulting in several amputations. It is unclear if Koch will ever retain his previous quality of life, until hope comes in the form of Dr. Kodi Azari, one of the world’s leading hand transplant pioneers, who sees promise in Koch’s case for a new kind of hand transplant. In a series of fascinating interviews for the episode, Dr. Azari shares how he’s watched the movie Sully repeatedly as a source of inspiration and how he considers Captain Sullenberger a personal hero. Watching and re-watching the film portrayal of Captain Sullenberger conduct an emergency landing of US Airways Flight 1549, saving the lives of all 155 people on board, Dr. Azari is struck by the parallels between his and Captain Sullenberger’s work. “You’re expected to do the operations perfectly, every single time, and yet the human body throws curve balls our way and when that happens you’ve got to have the composure to do what’s right, to do what’s best, and you have to make judgments at very critical times,” Dr. Azari says. “…The movie really resonated with me.” “In many ways, Sully’s like a hero to you,” ABC’s Juju Chang suggests. “I think he’s a hero to many people,” Dr. Azari replies.
After Dr. Azari successfully completes Koch’s first-of-its-kind, 18-hour hand transplant, both doctor and patient are in for an incredible surprise. The ABC cameras are rolling as Captain Sullenberger unexpectedly walks through the door, meeting both Koch and Dr. Azari, who thanks him for his inspiration. A renowned patient safety advocate, this is not the first time Captain Sullenberer has made headlines for his work in the field of health care. He co-authored a crucial article on “avoidable health-care” harm, resulting in a keynote at the Forum on Emerging Topics in Patient Safety and an informative interview on applying the lessons of airline safety to health care practices with Stanford Medical School. A trusted and sought-out expert on safety, leadership, and decision-making in times of crisis, Captain Sullenberger’s appearance on ABC’s 20/20 is a testament to the continued lessons and inspiration “The Miracle on the Hudson” provides for individuals of all professions.Watch Captain Sullenberger on ABC 20/20 >>
Captain Sullenberger leaves audience “awestruck” at Infosys Confluence 2017
Delivering a keynote at Infosys Confluence 2017, a thought leadership summit attended by over 1,600 leaders and visionaries, Captain SULLY SULLENBERGER left audiences “awestruck” “impressed” and “inspired.” Sharing both lessons learned as Captain of US Airways Flight 1549—known as the “Miracle on the Hudson” — and insights into transformative leadership and the impact of technology on human performance, Sullenberger had the audience tweeting praise before, during and after his speech: “Awestruck watching and listening to @Captsully at #InfosysConfluence”; “An inspiring talk. Leadership fundamentals redefined. Awesome to hear it first hand. @InfyConfluence @Captsully”; “Always admired @Captsully for his bravery but I'm more impressed by his humility and his humanity. What an amazing role model! “; “Perhaps the deepest, most professionally relevant, most surprising, best conference keynote I've seen. THANKS @Captsully #InfosysConfluence”.
Captain Sullenberger’s game-changing lessons featured in Forbes
CAPTAIN SULLY SULLENBERGER, the famed pilot who became an international hero after the emergency landing of Flight 1549 on the Hudson River, shared key insights on risk management and leadership with The Forbes Interview podcast. In a fascinating and informative one hour interview, Captain Sullenberger dives into the crux of an issue facing individuals and organizations across industries: “What we’re all trying to do ultimately is find ways to improve human performance in complicated systems that all involve inherent risk.” Drawing on his experience during the “Miracle on the Hudson,” as well as the wide range of roles he’s held as a trusted safety and risk-management expert since, Captain Sullenberger provides game-changing takeaways on what it takes to thrive under pressure both in business and life, how to build a team that can manage risk, and how to lead by example. It’s a message he’s shared with audiences worldwide, always receiving rave reviews: “There was not one sound in the room the entire time that he spoke... When you book a speaking engagement with Captain Sullenberger, you will definitely get more than your money’s worth" (Cox Media Group).
Captain Sullenberger honored at 2017 Endeavor Awards
Captain SULLY SULLENBERGER, internationally renowned for his 2009 emergency landing of Flight 1549 on the Hudson River, was celebrated as the 2017 Inspiration Award Winner at the Endeavor Awards. A major event that honors and recognizes the awe-inspiring pilots and organizations that have contributed to public benefit aviation, Captain Sullenberger was not only applauded for serving as Captain during the “Miracle on the Hudson,” but also as an expert who has helped shape the public conversation on a wide range of safety issues. Currently serving on the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Advisory Committee for Automation in Transportation, Captain Sullenberger is a trusted expert and national leader on top safety concerns, such as the challenges and opportunities of driverless cars and the risks of drone proliferation. Addressing a rapt audience during his award acceptance, Captain Sullenberger praised the unsung heroes and volunteer pilots making a difference.Watch Captain Sullenberger speak at the Endeavor Awards >>
Captain Sullenberger delivers powerful message on leadership at SAS Global Forum
Famed “Miracle on the Hudson” pilot Capt. SULLY SULLENBERGER kicked off the SAS Global Forum with a “rousing” keynote on innovation and true leadership. A premier multinational workplace, SAS’ annual Global Forum attracts over 1,200 executive level customers from across industries, offering transformative insights and leadership strategies with a focus on the power of data and analytics to drive decision making. As the opening keynote, Captain Sullenberger set the bar high, encouraging rapt audience members to lead by example: “You have to be willing and able to check your ego at the door.” Sullenberger also stressed the importance of innovation and adaptability— “Change before you’re forced to, by competition, by regulation, or by circumstance, and the more and quicker that you’re able to change the more it can become a competitive advantage”—delivering countless memorable lines and takeaways. The informative and inspiring speech came just days after Sullenberger delivered another powerful keynote at the Cox Media Group Leadership Conference, and both appearances had the tweets pouring in: “Goosebumps. We just heard from Capt. "Sully" Sullenberger at #CMGLC2017. Now that is leadership in crisis.”Learn more about Captain Sullenberger’s SAS Global Forum Keynote >>
Captain Sullenberger's lessons on leadership and decision-making keep audiences riveted to seat
A highly in-demand speaker for his captivating message on leadership, preparedness, and decision-making— particularly in times of crisis— Capt. SULLY SULLENBERGER receives overwhelming ovations after each one of his speaking engagements. "Captain Sullenberger had everyone riveted to their seat. You could hear a pin drop in the room" (Toronto Community Forum); "Rave reviews from audience members included:'So timely, so powerful, so authentic'...This will leave a mark!" (Boston Children's Hospital); "Within minutes after Captain Sullenberger concluded his presentation, we have been barraged by amazing positive feedback from our dignitaries, sponsors & chamber members all echoing that he's the best speaker they've ever had the pleasure of hearing" (Danville Chamber of Congress). Beyond Captain Sullenberg's power with audiences, he also generates media attention before and after an event. Following a recent speaking engagement in Florida, an attendee and survivor of Flight 1549— the "Miracle on the Hudson" flight that brought Sullenberger fame— told local news: "I'm so grateful he's here standing with us."Watch one of Captain Sullenberger's recent presentations >>
Sully Sullenberger: A first person account
Capt. CHESLEY "SULLY" SULLENBERGER, the man responsible for safely landing U.S. Airways flight 1549 in the Hudson River after complete engine failure, gives a first person account of himself, his origins, and his mettle in this Wall Street Journal article.Read the article here > >
Candid Q&A with Miracle On The Hudson Captain Sullenberger and wife Lorrie
Miracle On The Hudson pilot CHESLEY "SULLY" SULLENBERGER and his wife Lorrie take time for a deep Q&A with Diablo Magazine. The two go beyond the heroic events of that fateful day and share a rich back story to the blockbuster movie and their roles in a life-affirming story.Read the article here > >
Sully movie book tie-in hits The New York Times betseller list
The untold story that inspired the film Sully is an NYT bestseller. The media praised CAPTAIN SULLY SULLENBERGER's landing as "The Miracle on the Hudson." But this is not a story about a miracle. It is the reality of a leader, who was so well prepared for a harrowing crisis such as this, that even though his blood pressure and pulse shot to explosive levels, he focused on working with his crew to succeed in this death-defying landing. But what happened next is where the drama begins in Sully the movie. Watch the heart-pounding trailer >>Read an excerpt from the book that inspired the film >>
Captain Sullenberger talks to HWA about Sully movie, directed by Clint Eastwood and starring Tom Hanks
CAPTAIN SULLY SULLENBERGER talks to HWA about the movie Sully, directed by Clint Eastwood and starring Tom Hanks. He also shared with us that Flight 1549 is not just an experience that defined him as a leader; it is proof positive that flawless execution comes through years of focus and preparation for such an event. When it comes to being prepared for the ultimate challenge, there is no better speaker than Captain Sullenberger, and you will be in sheer awe to meet the man who exemplifies the kind of leadership and character that we would hope every leader could possess in a time of crisis.Watch video >>
Captain Sullenberger reveals 5 Tips for Making Decisions Under Fire in Entrepreneur
How would you handle a death defying situation in 208 seconds? That is the amount of time Capt. SULLY SULLENBERGER and his U.S. Airways Flight 1549 crew had to do something they were never trained for (land a commercial airliner in a river) and get it right the first time. In this article for Entrepreneur Magazine, Capt. Sullenberger shares 5 human skills that anyone can learn and apply when facing decisions under fire in business and life.Read article >>
Captain Sullenberger shares What Is Needed When The Unexpected Happens...And It Will in Forbes
Capt. SULLY SULLENBERGER pens an insightful Forbes / Leadership article on being prepared for the unexpected. Read on to find out how he helps answer the following question: What kind of leadership best enables men and women in positions of authority to navigate unexpected situations that range from the merely inconvenient to the truly grave?Read article >>
Blog posts that engage, inspire and help you lead
A consummate leader who takes pride in living a life of integrity in both personal and business endeavors, Capt. SULLY SULLENBERGER shares timeless perspectives through his blog on a variety of relevant and timely topics.Read Sully's captivating blog >>
Captain “Sully” Sullenberger has been dedicated to the pursuit of safety for his entire adult life. While he is best known for serving as Captain during what has been called the “Miracle on the Hudson,” Sullenberger is a safety expert, speaker, and author. He currently serves on the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Advisory Committee for Automation in Transportation. He still flies privately.
Born and raised in Denison, Texas, Sullenberger pursued his childhood love of aviation at the United States Air Force Academy. In his graduation year at the academy, he received the Outstanding Cadet in Airmanship Award. In addition to his bachelor’s degree in psychology, he also has two master's degrees, one in industrial psychology from Purdue University and one in public administration from the University of Northern Colorado. He also has an honorary Doctorate of Letters from Purdue University.
Upon graduation from the Academy, Sullenberger served as a fighter pilot for the United States Air Force from 1975 to 1980. He advanced to become a flight leader and a training officer, attaining the rank of captain. During his active duty, he was stationed in North America and Europe. After serving in the Air Force, Sullenberger became an airline pilot with Pacific Southwest Airlines, later acquired by US Airways, until his retirement from commercial flying in March 2010.
Prior to gaining worldwide attention, Sullenberger was an active and ardent safety advocate throughout his four-decade-long career. He was selected to perform accident investigation duties for the United States Air Force, and served as an Air Line Pilots Association (ALPA) representative during a National Transportation Safety Board investigation. Additionally, Sullenberger served as a Local Air Safety Chairman for ALPA, and was a member of one of their national technical committees, where he contributed to the creation of a Federal Aviation Administration Advisory Circular. He was also instrumental in developing and implementing the Crew Resource Management course used by US Airways, and he has taught the course to hundreds of other airline crewmembers.
After logging more than 20,000 hours of flight time Sullenberger became internationally renowned on January 15, 2009 when he and his crew safely guided US Airways Flight 1549 to an emergency water landing in New York City’s frigid Hudson River. The Airbus A320’s two engines had lost thrust following a bird strike. Sullenberger and his crew received international acclaim for their actions that day, including the passage of a Congressional resolution recognizing their bravery. Sullenberger was ranked second in TIME's "Top 100 Most Influential Heroes and Icons of 2009” and was awarded the French Legion of Honour.
Sullenberger is the #1 New York Times best-selling author of Highest Duty: My Search for What Really Matters and also wrote Making a Difference: Stories of Vision and Courage from America's Leaders. Clint Eastwood directed the major motion picture about Sullenberger’s life, titled Sully, based on Highest Duty. Tom Hanks stars in the lead role; Aaron Eckhart and Laura Linney co-star. The film was released to critical acclaim in September of 2016 and garnered four Broadcast Film Critics nominations and one Academy Award nomination. Highest Duty has been republished as Sully: My Search for What Really Matters.
From 2009 to 2013, Sullenberger served as co-chairman of EAA Young Eagles—a program that inspires and educates youth about aviation. He is an international lecturer and keynote speaker at educational institutions, corporations and non-profit organizations about the importance of aviation and patient safety, crisis management, life-long preparation, leadership and living a life of integrity. In collaboration with DuPont Sustainable Solutions, Sullenberger developed and was featured in a multi-award winning video training program, Miracle on the Hudson: Prepare for Safety, which helps employees increase their commitment to safety and transform their organizations’ safety culture. These programs and endeavors are ideally suited to put Sullenberger’s expertise in safety and knowledge of high performance systems’ improvement, to work saving lives, saving money and bringing value to communities. To this end, at the request of Department of Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx’s request, Sullenberger began serving on the DOT’s Advisory Committee on Automation in Transportation in January 2017. The Committee will advise on transportation automation issues across a range of industries.
Sullenberger is married to Lorrie Sullenberger, a community, social, and women’s wellness advocate. She serves as an Advisory Board Member for Big Brothers Big Sisters Bay Area, and is a 26-year volunteer with Guide Dogs for the Blind. The couple and their two daughters reside in the San Francisco Bay Area.