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Dick Beardsley      

Motivational Speaker, Suicide Survivor of Loss, Farm Accident Survivor, Prescription Drug Addiction Survivor, Record Breaking Marathon Runner, Famous 1982 Boston Marathon Runner, Author, Fishing Guide, Innkeeper & Subject of a Feature Film

For a brief moment in the early 1980s, Dick Beardsley became the most famous runner/athlete in the world - by losing a race. During the 1982 Boston Marathon, in a contest that has come to be known as The Duel in the Sun, Beardsley - foiled by a motorcycle that cut him off near the end - finished two seconds behind Alberto Salazar in one of the most memorable battles in marathon history. It was the closest finish ever at the world's premier marathon, and both runners broke the course and the American records.

The story of Dick Beardsley's running career alone is the stuff of legends, but it is the story that comes after that draws people in and keeps them listening. Dick is a true survivor and his life is a story of hope and redemption. After retiring from running, Dick had a series of near-fatal accidents that left him addicted to pain killers. His story of overcoming extreme obstacles speaks to anyone who loves competition, who has survived catastrophe, or who has pursued a seemingly impossible goal.

Not only is Dick Beardsley one of the worlds most extraordinary, respected and compelling motivational/inspirational speakers, he is an international best selling author and the subject of a feature film, entitled Against the Wind.

Dick Beardsley has been the keynote speaker at corporate events and fundraisers, non-profits, schools, races, prisons and drug treatment centers, to name a few - Anywhere motivation and inspiration is needed. He has a gift of making people laugh, cry and most importantly, think and appreciate life to the fullest, despite any ups and downs that may come along. Dick's talks are directly from his heart and are highly inspirational.

Dick Beardsley has spoken to countless number of groups all over the world, ranging in size from 5 people to 15,000. Dick is also an accomplished TV commentator and radio announcer.

Speech Topics


Organizations reflect life. It can be a series of ups and downs. Nothing can be more demotivating than an organization that reaches the greatest of highs and then falls to the lowest of lows. Dick personally knows in an incredibly powerful way how this feels and how to climb back up to greatness again, going from world class athlete at the top of his field to confessed drug addict, falling to the depth of the valley. Dick shares in a personal and poignant way how to get back to the top of the mountain again.


Many young organizations are faced with the daunting challenge of taking on, in the marketplace, market leading brands and companies, that have decades of success and pedigree. This is exactly what Dick faced in the 1982 Boston Marathon by taking on the world record holder and never before challenged, the “King” Alberto Salazar. Starting with training, both mentally and physical, to the starting line and to the brink in this unbelievable finish, Dick shares the underlying learnings of how to take on the “Goliaths” in life and give them a run for their money. Dick will show you how to reach for excellence and make it a reality.


Dick was ranked as one of the top 5 marathoners on the world. He won some of the world’s most prestigious races. He ran world record holders into the ground. Dick knows the simple truths of what it takes to be world class and be the best that can be. The same principles that apply in sports apply as well in life and business.


Whether Dick is talking about his world class running career or series of numerous accidents, where he started at the very bottom of the running world to becoming a world class athlete or he’s talking about the beginnings of his horrific addiction to narcotic pain medicines, your clients will leave the event a changed person. They will be encouraged and inspired to face their own demons with courage and to continue getting up no matter how many times life may knock you down.


Dick will share his life with your clients and they will leave knowing that anything is possible, despite any roadblocks or doubts. With perseverance and courage, your clients will know they can take the next step when they don’t think that they can or have it in them. They will leave with the ability to believe in themselves and embrace life’s challenges, not matter how daunting. They will leave inspired and he will bring your listeners to laughter, tears, the pinnacle, the bottom, and back up again. They will be walked through his exciting highs and his dark valley of despair and through the anguish to that great light of hope and redemption.

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