"The greatest public servant in the country" - The Jefferson Award

Keynote Topics

Stacey Bess is an inspirational educator and author who speaks on the importance of service, mentorship and leadership, and overcoming adversity. Drawing on her fascinating and inspirational personal story – teaching homeless children in a small shed known as The School with No Name – she offers powerful insights and lessons that audiences yearning to make a difference can apply to their community or organization.

Through ups and downs and many personal struggles – including a battle with thyroid cancer—Bess taught kindergarten through sixth grade for 11 years at The School with No Name, an experience that effected a profound change in the teacher as well as her students. During that time she discovered that, by teaching and modeling love, self worth, personal power, and courage, she could reach children with no homes and little hope, children who had previously been labeled “unteachable.” These children grew into living proof that Bess’ methods work. To inspire and motivate others with a passion for service, Bess penned the memoir Nobody Don’t Love Nobody, which was adapted into the April 2011 Hallmark Hall of Fame movie Beyond the Blackboard starring Emily VanCamp.

After she published her first book and gained the support of the Utah community, Bess gained international recognition for her unusual success with “hopeless” children. She has won prestigious land national and International awards. A highlight came when she was honored with the esteemed National Jefferson Award for Greatest Public Service along with First Lady Barbara Bush, Supreme Court Justice Harry Blackman, and Ambassador Walter Annenberg.

Stacey Bess earned her bachelor’s degree in elementary education from the University of Utah and continues to be a leading advocate in the nation for the educational rights of impoverished children. A dynamic and powerful speaker, she engages groups large and small, sharing the story that changed her life as she taught and nurtured hundreds of underprivileged children. Her story continues to change lives as her audiences are inspired to become more involved in their own communities.

Keynote Speaking Topics

Be a Mentor, Change a Life

In this presentation, speaker Stacey Bess offers three powerful lessons that can change the life of a child, build and empower a family, and improve a community. She shares these lessons by recounting stories as seen through the eyes of underprivileged children.

  • Lesson one: Follow through with what you commit to. Bess tells this story through the eyes of Zachary who needed just one person to teach him it was okay to trust.
  • Lesson two: Don’t hide behind your credentials – get down on the floor and be a human being. Bess shares this story through the eyes of Alex and an NBA basketball star.
  • Lesson three: We are a product of what has been given to us. Bess tells this story through the eyes of Sarah, a homeless woman on the streets who used an angry demeanor to protect herself. By simply giving her a coat, Bess was able to change Sarah’s outlook and take her into her community, helping Sarah learn that when you are part of a community, you willingly give back to it.

Overcoming the Odds: Lessons from the School with No Name

Powerful and dynamic, speaker Stacey Bess engages groups by sharing the story that changed her life as she taught and nurtured hundreds of underprivileged children. She speaks on the importance of service, mentorship and leadership, and overcoming adversity. Drawing on her fascinating and inspirational personal story – teaching homeless children in a small shed known as “The School with No Name” – she offers powerful insights and lessons that inspire audiences to become more involved in their own communities.

From the Classroom to the Boardroom: Leadership Lessons for Women

All women have a story to tell. Speaker Stacey Bess engages her audiences by sharing her personal story of triumph over all odds to create a school for underprivileged children. She challenges her audiences to use their own trials and triumphs to make a difference in their communities. Bess teaches women that it is important to commit to what you believe in: don’t be afraid to stand up and make a difference!

Building Powerful and Caring Communities in the Work Place

Through the eyes of at risk populations Stacey teaches her audiences the importance of building a stronger community. She emphasizes trust, follow through and commitment. She believes that in order to build trust, we need to listen more and act with courage and accountability. Stacey also expresses through her stories of triumph and tragedy that our accountability to ourselves and others defines our character. Audiences laugh and cry as they recognize that they are capable of building strong connections to the people they serve. They leave this presentation inspired to make that difference and with the tools necessary to begin today.


What are you going to be today?
Leadership is not about you .. Its about you serving.
Adaptability is the greatest gift you can give to others.

Beating Thyroid Cancer: Use your Trials and Triumphs to build a bridge with those that you serve.

On Service: What Do We Owe Each Other?

When we invest in a child, we lift their family and change our communities for the better. This is a call to action in behalf of all children regardless of economics.

Toughen Up & Reach Them: Making a Difference When No One Else Will

Can you change a child’s life?

Let Stacey take you on a journey into her world and you will leave wanting to be a volunteer in the schools.

Book Stacey

"We've had overwhelming, positive comments about Stacey's message to our teachers. ‘She said everything I needed to hear before school started,’ was one comment I've heard over and over. Another consistent theme our teachers have been talking about is ‘love your kids, the academics will come...’ While I listened to her speak last week in our district, I was excited to feel the same enthusiasm and passion for my profession as I had the initial time I listened to her speak at the National Title I Conference in SLC. She delivers a powerful message! Thank you again!!!" -Federal Programs, Preschool Center – Principal

"During Stacey’s visit to Seton Hill University in Greensburg, Pennsylvania, in April to celebrate the 2016 Student Affiliate Dinner for Month of the Young Child, she shared the gifts of teaching with our education students including compassion, trust, mentorship and leadership, importance of service, and conquering diversity. Students attending from Seton Hill University; St. Vincent College; University of Pittsburgh, Greensburg; Carlow University; and Westmoreland County Community College; Pittsburgh Association for the Education of Young Children (PAEYC) members and community members were inspired by her message and her dedication to the profession of teaching. Most of all, Stacey shared how important it is to love our children from the top to the bottom. We are not just teachers to our students; we are so much more!" -Dr. Kathleen I. Harris, Associate Professor, Early Childhood Education, Seton Hill University

"Stacey was wonderful! We have been receiving very positive feedback regarding Stacey’s presentation. I would not be surprised if she is not invited back to the Northern Virginia area to speak at other events in the future." -Inova Health System

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