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Stu Speaks

Short... sweet

Wed, 2009-03-25 22:26

I am sitting at my favourite Starbucks enjoying a latte. I know all the staff, I am a regular. The manager is sitting at the table beside me. She has just promoted a young barista to a shift supervisor. I am happy to see her so excited. I open my Macbook and look at my dozen new emails.

“I don’t know it you heard?” says the manager as she leans over to me.

“No, what’s the news?” I reply.

“Sandy the other Starbucks Manager, her husband passed away on Sunday.”



Tue, 2009-03-17 14:53

Just a quick BLOG today. It’s St. Patrick’s Day and I hope everyone enjoys this the most green of days. I challenge you though to do it wisely… you don’t need to get drunk to celebrate.

Please be safe, approximately 207 people die or are seriously injured each day in Canada from drinking and driving. Please know that the only people that truly benefit from you drinking to excess is the companies that make the drinks we buy.

Focus - Commit - Follow through

Mon, 2009-03-09 21:57

My dearest friend returned fro a three week life changing program at the Hipprocates Institute in Florida. She is a breast cancer survivor and went there to detox and I mean DETOX! I won’t get into the details of it, but it was serious!

When we got together for a tea yesterday I asked what she would tell someone about what she learned if she could only tell them one thing. She said…

“Focus, commit and follow through.”


Mon, 2009-03-02 18:34

I would walk up the path to the shop almost every morning to say hello. In at 5 am there wasn’t much of a chance that you wouldn’t find Gord already there, cleaning up his workshop, painting a door, fixing one of the tractors. You knew he was there, he had the morning news playing or perhaps the all oldies station. Humming to himself, tapping his feet.

“Morning my son!” came the chipper and fatherly voice from the back of the shop. “Morning Gord! How’s the day lookin’?” I would reply.

Doctors orders

Thu, 2009-02-19 17:27

I am a baseball fan, not obsessed, but a fan. My team is the Toronto Blue Jays.

Roy Halladay is one of the best pitchers in all of baseball. Won the highest honour a pitcher can get, the Cy Young. Won 20 or more games twice. Was part of 5 all star teams. Good at what he does.

Lesson's from a tea cup

Tue, 2009-02-17 22:15

Sitting in a Starbucks, just finished interviewing a great young man for a possible job with our organization. I asked him what his passion was… great question.

I was looking around the coffee house and saw a tea cup for sale, it has a tag attached to it that read…


There is a difference

Thu, 2009-02-12 18:05

I am sitting in the Apple Store at The Eaton Centre in downtown Toronto. I am so excited about the vibe… I want to buy three more Macs. Here’s why Mac is SO successful, they take customer service to a completely new level. There are more then a dozen Apple reps walking the floor, but not so much to sell, but to help. I do mean help.


Mon, 2009-02-09 15:14

I am a lover of learning. I love to learn it’s that simple. A true leader is in constant evolution. If someone says they “know it all” then they have stopped growing, growing is all about who we are as humans. I was listening to an audio program yesterday while I was running (great time to learn) and was hit with an awesome idea. The idea of CANi. I put the I in small case because that’s what you do (iPhone, iPod).

It all matters

Mon, 2009-02-02 19:20

Just read an article today about Michael Phelps the multi gold medal winning US swimmer. It seems that he was photographed at a party with a hash pipe, smoking… drugs. Ok, I know it’s not a big deal, an elite athlete, millionaire now, what’s a little puff between friends. I can tell you how BIG of a deal it is. He has now lost over 2 million dollars in corporate endorsements, with many more looking at contracts with a fine tooth comb… for a way out of their relationship.

There, right there

Tue, 2009-01-27 12:16

I love getting up early, very early. Love it. Truly! I was up today at 4:30 and I was reading some great quotes. Check out this one.

“For lack of attention a thousand forms of loveliness elude us every day.”
AC/a,!aEUEvelyn Underhill

I am not sure who Evelyn is but she hit the nail on the head. I had three of our summer staff come visit yesterday and they went for a walk around the property. When they came back they commented on how beautiful everything was. True, so true.


Upcoming Events

Apr 9 2018
London, Ontario
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Guelph & Kitchener, Ontario
Apr 24 2018
Kelowana, Surrey and Victoria, British Columbia
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  • Student Conferences

    We brought 40 students, mostly juniors, and the layout of the conference space and dorm space made our staff feel comfortable with supervision. The college also made it super easy for meals - everything was in the same complex. I HIGHLY recommend trying out this conference for those schools who haven’t yet. Top notch leadership experience!

    ~Bob Kline - Teacher - Huron Heights Secondary School, Kitchener, ON
  • Student Conferences

    Thanks so much for an amazing conference. We’re already looking forward to EOSLC 2018!

    ~Riley McMullen - Tagwi Secondary School - Avonmore, ON
  • Student Conferences

    I want to thank you for giving my students the opportunity to attend EOSLC!! On the drive home, they were discussing how wonderful the speakers were, and the spirit leaders, and the venue, and the whole experience!!!

    I know they have taken with them new insight as to what it means to be a leader! I thank you for that! You must be so proud to have so much positive influence on the youth of tomorrow.

    Thank you, thank you!!

    ~Jennifer Neville -VALOUR SCHOOL - Petawawa
  • Training Centres

    We had such a great time! Your camp is aMazing. The students loved it, and did things they never thought they would have! The slide show at the end was the cherry on top!!!

    ~Amanda - Teacher - Huron Heights Secondary School
  • Stu Speaks

    Students were very engaged, enthusiastic and excited. Stu is hilarious…seriously. “Humour is never a bad thing” said one student.

    ~Annalisa Varano - Vice Principal - St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Secondary School
  • Stu Speaks

    They say a great presenter “leaves them wanting more”. Well, we loved your presentation and the entire team asked me when you will be back! You are truly STUpendous!

    ~Nancy Klensch - Founder of Summit Kids
  • Stu Speaks

    Stu is an energetic, entertaining and dynamic presenter. He captures is audiences’ attention and keeps the room engaged for the entire presentation! His stories in his presentation captures everyone at different points, even the teachers!

    ~Sara Meaney - Cobourg Collegiate Institute
  • Stu Speaks

    Stu was great! Staff and students felt it really broke the anxiety in the building and we even got cupcakes today from one of the students.

    ~Carrie Rowlandson - William Aberhart High School, Calgary Alberta
  • Stu Speaks

    Stu was fantastic. There is nothing better than seeing 600 adolescents laughing their heads off. He delivers a terrific message and has the entire audience engaged, thinking, listening and most importantly laughing within seconds, and he keeps it going for over an hour. Thanks again on behalf of the Shores!!

    ~Doug Woods - Vice Principal, Nantyr Shores Secondary School
  • Stu Speaks

    Stu’s speech did exactly what I hoped it would do when I tried to bring him in: it brought the school together for a good laugh while empowering the student body to be the change they wish to see in their classroom. I feel he hit this goal perfectly.

    ~Steven Fotheringham - Oakville Trafalgar High School
  • Stu Speaks

    I really liked how the speech really just seemed like Stu was telling us funny stories, but he always related it back to the overall message. It didn’t sound like a speech at all, it was as if he was just talking to the crowd. I would say that he is excellent in connecting with the audience and keeping them entertained. There was not a two minute period in Stu’s speech were nobody was laughing. He kept us amused throughout the entire presentation. I thought he was perfect.

    ~James Palloto
  • Stu Speaks

    I would highly recommend Stu, his engaging personality was a real hook for the students and his messages were ones that many of them could identify with. The humour was great and the students shared that they enjoyed the presentation.

    ~Teresa Fowler - W.H. Croxford High School, Airdrie, Alberta
  • Stu Speaks

    Stu is personable. Students are willing to listen to him. They enjoy listening to him. He has a message, but he is also entertaining. He is fun to listen to and students don’t feel talked down to or preached at.

    ~Tanya Lacey - McKinnon Park Secondary School, Caledonia, ON
  • Student Conferences

    OSLC has played a pivotal role in the growth and development of our Student Activities Council leadership group over the 10 years we have been attending. The chance to get away together, bond as a group, meet other awesome leaders and advisors from across the province, and be challenged by some of the best speakers in the world has made a huge impact on the enthusiasm and effectiveness of our leadership program.”

    ~Jeff Gerber, Waterloo Oxford District Secondary School, Baden, Ontario
  • Training Centres

    “Just want to thank the Pigeon Lake YLCC staff for another wonderful experience. My Grade 7 class just returned from their overnight with smiles on their faces and singing ‘pizza man’. I have taken a group for a number of years now and I never tire of the experience. YOU rock!”

  • Youth Camps

    “Thank you Stu and Ornj and the AMAZING counsellors and staff for making the past two weeks amazing for Noah. He sobbed when we left, and can’t wait to return. He showed me his journal and we compared it to last year’s - what a difference a year makes.”

  • Youth Camps

    “Nothing makes my heart sing more, than to see my kids having the most amazing life experiences together. YLCC makes this happen every year. Pure Gold. ‘Thank You’ can’t really cover it …”

  • Youth Camps

    “Thank you for the best summer I have experienced to date. YLCC taught me how to embrace my values and to express opinions. The entire camp and amazing staff believed in me achieving any goal I were to set. “

  • Student Conferences

    OSLC to me is family, period.

    ~Hayley Press
  • Student Conferences

    OSLC showed me through the people I met what it was to be a better leader by how you act and what you do.

    ~Ben Arnold
  • Student Conferences

    OSLC is an experience where you can literally go and see 1000’s of other teens that have the same desire as you to lead and make a change in the world. The energy is electric, the movement is massive and the memories are completely unforgettable. The experience is one you fully cant understand without going there, there is an indescribable and irreplacable feeling that is created there, and it sticks even after you leave.

    ~Brittany Roney
  • Student Conferences

    OSLC changed my life. I have never felt so alive in my entire life. I met so many people who I will be life long friends with. The energy is amazing and the inspiration is indescribable.
    If there was one memory I could remember it would be OSLC.

    ~Maddison F
  • Student Conferences

    I don’t even know how to begin or where to start telling you how amazing OSLC was and how amazing and incredible you are! This event was truly life changing for me and my council, thank you so much for this, for OSLC and for you. You are truly an inspiration and have shown me so much and have lit a fire inside me.

    ~Joshua McCallum, Holy Cross Catholic Secondary School, Strathroy, Ontario
  • Student Conferences

    I have been bringing students to the Ontario Student Leadership Conference for over 10 years. Our students clamour for a spot at the conference because they have heard about it and want to be a part of it. They always come back from the conference excited and motivated to make positive changes in our school and community. The speakers are always world class and the workshops inspire and educate the students, I look forward to being part of this incredible conference for years to come, keep up the great work.

    ~Kyle Pope, Oakville Traflagar High School
  • Student Conferences

    This conference consistently fosters, in the students who attend, a sense of community in leadership that I’ve yet to see generated to this degree anywhere else. Former students have told me, years later, that the OSLC was the highlight of their high school experience. I believe them.

    ~Ross Thomson, Craig Kielburger Secondary School, Milton, Ontario
  • Student Conferences

    I have been attending OSLC a number of years with our Students’ Council Executive. There is no other opportunity that I am able to offer my students that leads to such enthusiasm and ideas for the school year. Many of my students have worked as Spirit Leaders at the conference, and more than once students have told me how OSLC has changed their life. On top of that, OSLC is one of the very few conferences that allow for PD for staff members who work in student leadership. More than once I have had my own commitment to student leadership refreshed through workshops at OSLC.

    ~Tanya Lacey, McKinnon Park Secondary School, Caledonia, Ontario
  • Stu Speaks

    I was at the OCA conference on May 6th, and I just wanted to thank you on being such a wicked keynote… you definitely put me back in the camp mindset and reminded me of what’s truly important about the up-coming summer. Once again, a job very well done.

    ~Emily Summers
  • Stu Speaks

    The students really enjoyed Stu’s humour and low-key but critical message about getting involved and getting the most out of their High School experience. I would recommend Stu as a speaker who relates well to students, is funny, and gets the message out without preaching.

    Thank you,

    ~Lynn Toye