We are so proud to announce that CGK President Jason Dorsey was inducted into the National Speakers Hall of Fame! Jason shared his experience about the honor of receiving this recognition—in-person—with the CGK team, and we’d love to share it with you:
What would you do if you were being inducted into your industry’s Hall of Fame? This was not a question I ever considered. But now I know the answer. I would jump up and down while cheering across the stage! Which, of course, I did. Check out the video below to see for yourself!!!
It means so much to me to receive the highest recognition in our industry—and from my peers—and to get to do so in-person. You see, last year I was “officially” inducted into the National Speakers Hall of Fame, but the event was virtual because of the pandemic. I didn’t get the chance to hug my friends and celebrate with my peers. So you can imagine my excitement when I learned that my class of honorees would be recognized in-person at this year’s National Speakers Association annual convention.
What you can’t see in the video is that I was pretty emotional before they announced my name to walk on the stage. What hit me as I was waiting off stage was all the people who have helped me on this journey that I wish could have walked onto the stage with me. My mom. My dad. My daughter. My grandfather. My mentors. My friends. My clients. And so many more. They deserved to hear the applause, too! Each of them played a role in my unorthodox journey, and I am incredibly grateful.
There was my first “paying” client who hired me to speak when I was 18 years old. All they could pay me to speak was to buy my lunch at a local pizza place which I enthusiastically accepted, as I had been living on Ramen Noodles for months and sleeping on a floor.
There was the meeting planner who hired me to speak alongside Barbara Bush to 5,000 leaders in an arena when I was 20 years old. That one event fast-tracked my speaking career across the US. And there is the team at the Global Leadership Summit who invited me to keynote an event for over 300,000 leaders from around the world in 2019! That led to invitations for me to speak from Rome to Singapore.
What an adventure it has been—from speaking in arenas with 16,000 leaders cheering to corporate boardrooms, embassies, and everywhere in between. What. A. Journey. I even spoke in all 50 U.S. states before I turned 30.
So many people have helped me along the way and continue to do so by advocating for me to speak to their organization. It is a tremendous gift and responsibility I take very seriously.
I also wanted to show my emotion to the NSA organization, whose conference I first attended when I was 19 years old and still wearing braces! It was at NSA national conferences where I first met speakers such as Jack Canfield, Mark Victor Hansen, Nido Qubein, Jeffrey Gitomer, Lou Holtz, and so many more that influenced how I approach speaking—and gave me great, candid advice. In fact, Jack Canfield and Mark Victor Hansen booked me to appear on my first national TV show, The View!
All of that was on my mind as I stood off stage, so I did what I thought was best at the moment they announced my name and I walked onto the stage. Instead of a formal walk and the traditional wave, I couldn’t help but jump up and down and cheer. Sometimes in life, you just have to break with formality and jump up and down and cheer!! After a year like this past one, I thought it was especially appropriate.
The Hall of Fame recognition was extra inspiring because I was included alongside four fantastic speakers, with whom I am honored to share the 2020 class, Mary Kelly, Barry Banther, Ford Saeks, and Sam Richter. Each of them is a leader in their field. It is an honor to be on any stage with them.
I want to thank each of you reading this post—my family, friends, clients, mentors, advocates, and colleagues, for being on this journey with me. Every day that I get to speak, write, and lead new research to bridge generations is a tremendous gift.