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David Breashears        

Everest Adventurer, Filmmaker & Senior Lecturer at MIT Sloan School of Leadership

Filmmaker, adventurer, and mountaineer David Breashears has combined his skills to become one of the world’s most revered adventure filmmakers, an author, and coveted speaker lecturing on a range of topics including leadership, motivation, and teamwork.

Breashears has worked on more than 45 films, and has reached the summit of Everest five times. He has directed, produced and photographed films for PBS, National Geographic, BBC, ABC, NBC, Working Title Films, and Universal Pictures. Breashears was Co-Producer, Co-Director and Expedition Leader of the most highly acclaimed IMAX film of all time, Everest.

Breashears has received numerous awards for achievements in filmmaking, including four Emmy Awards, and has published three bestselling books: "Everest: Mountain Without Mercy," "Last Climb," and his memoir "High Exposure."

Breashears is Senior Lecturer Faculty Member at MIT’s Sloan School of Management’s Leadership Center. He also serves as Faculty Member at the United States’ Naval Postgraduate School's Center for Executive Education recurrently presenting “Leadership in Crisis." He speaks on a range of topics including leadership, motivation, teamwork, team building, and safety.

Breashears is the founder, Executive Director and Principal Photographer of the non-profit organization, GlacierWorks, whose mission is to globally inspire mitigation and adaptation through the power of his images documenting the gradual disruption of the vital, relied upon flow of water from Asia’s glacier systems.

Speech Topics

Topple the Impossible: Leading & Following Effectively

What It Takes to Climb Any Mountain

His years of arduous work on the unforgiving slopes of Earth’s highest peak have taught speaker David Breashears that the precepts to success are Disciplined Leadership, Disciplined Thought, and Disciplined Action. These are interdependent on one another for success. Disciplined leaders engage in a disciplined thought process when choosing their team and designing a multidimensional, flexible plan that provides options. Occasionally, the environment for which the plan was devised is not the environment to which the plan unfolds. Disciplined Action is required because the plan is only as valuable as the team’s ability to execute it. Without Disciplined Action and reliance on Disciplined Thought and Disciplined Leadership, great summits are rarely achieved.

Vision, Courage, Passion: Leadership at 26,000 Feet

David Breashears's leadership presentation is based on 25 years of real-life frontline experience as a widely traveled mountaineer, adventurer, and filmmaker. In telling the story of the now infamous 1996 tragedy on Mount Everest, Breashears dramatically recounts the vision, courage, and passion that led to his team reaching the summit on May 23, 1996 despite insurmountable odds. His multimedia presentation includes breathtaking and rarely seen images from his IMAX Everest expedition. Breashears has said that if there is a lesson to be learned from the tragedy, it is that success was not only being the world's first IMAX team to film on Everest's summit, it was also that everyone on his team returned safely from the mountain.


Last Climb: The Legendary Everest Expeditions of George Mallory ...
Books by David Breashears · High Exposure: An Enduring Passion for Everest and Unforgiving Places · Everest: The Death Zone · Everest: Mountain without ...

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