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Rear Admiral Marty  Evans, U.S. Navy (RET) Image

Rear Admiral Marty Evans, U.S. Navy (RET)

Esteemed Naval Leader and One of Highest-Ranking Women in U.S. Armed Forces History; Former President and CEO, American Red Cross

Travels From:
District Of Columbia
Fee Range:
$15,000 - $25,000


As one of America's most respected leaders, Marty Evans' exceptional career has combined both military service and stewardship of the nation's preeminent non-profit organizations. During her nearly 30 years with the Navy, Evans distinguished herself as one of only a handful of women to reach the rank of rear admiral and gained a reputation for forging new ground for women in the military; she was the first woman to command a U.S. naval station as well as chair the task force formed to address the gender-based issues that gave rise to the infamous Tailhook scandal. Evans was the highest ranking woman in the Navy; she retired in 1998.

Evans next assumed leadership of Girl Scouts of the USA, where she revolutionized the 90-year old organization and modernized its vision and programs for its nearly three million young members, increasing its diversity and growing its volunteer base to historic highs. In 2002, Evans was selected as the 13th President and Chief Executive Officer of the American Red Cross, skillfully steering the organization through some of the most tumultuous and destructive events in history including Hurricanes Katrina, Rita and Wilma as well as the deadly Southeast Asian tsunami in 2004. For her leadership of the Red Cross response, she was named "Executive of the Year" by Non Profit Times. Most recently, Evans served as the Acting Commissioner of the Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA), the premier women's professional sports organization in the world.

Speech Topics

The stakes in today’s non-profit world are undeniably high. Millions depend on organizations’ products and services but resources are limited and needs continue to increase without abatement. And for the leaders of these groups, aligning all the moving parts, internally and externally, to provide seamless execution is a feat unto itself.

Only with attention and focus on the right aspects of governance and management can organizations increase their capabilities to serve and continuously improve achieving their missions. Drawing from her extraordinary experience at the helm of the nation’s most venerated non-profit institutions, Evans offers unparalleled knowledge, brilliant insight and exceptional perspective on what it takes to provide effective leadership for true capacity building.

Diversity is an essential component of any organization’s culture, structure and strategy. The free and open exchange of new ideas enhances competitiveness and a commitment to a diverse hiring pool tends to attract the best talent available. Most critically, the growth and prosperity of an organization directly correlates to the similarity of its internal composition and its external constituency, i.e. an entity’s workforce demo and psychographics needs to reflect those of the people it serves.

While most believe diversity is the right thing to do, it is also a key driver of productivity, progress and profit. Evans explains how to create and institute strong diversity initiatives and leverage this responsibility into real bottom-line results.

As years of scientific evidence, social experiments, relationship books and gender experts have clearly demonstrated, men and women are different. Each faces distinct, sometimes difficult, challenges, whether due to cultural norms, societal expectations or pure prejudice. Despite these disparities, however, both men and women can learn from anyone, collecting experiences, observations and ideas to help define themselves and refine their own strengths.

Thus, to be successful is not a question of leading like a man or a woman but rather leading like ourselves, leveraging our own unique combination of skills and abilities that comprise who we are. In this engaging and enlightening discussion, Evans examines how to effectively determine who we are and define what matters most for us to lead and live with passion and purpose.

Times of crises require strong leadership and you never know when you will be selected to step up and serve in this crucial role. It can be positive. It can be paralyzing. It can come in the form of a career opportunity or a personal relationship. It may even come in an event like a natural disaster or terrorist attack. Crises bring out the best, and unfortunately the worst, in leaders; will you be ready when the call comes?

Marty Evans, former President and CEO of the American Red Cross, who led the organization through some of history’s most devastating disasters including Hurricanes Katrina, Wilma and Rita as well as the Southeast Asian tsunami, offers lessons learned from her phenomenal experiences and provides astute insight and advice for leaders to survive, thrive and grow in any situation.

Many are familiar with the adage: If we always do things the same way, we’re always going to get the same results. This is typically applied to organizations but it’s no less true for individuals. You cannot expect your life to be different if you don’t do something different or differently. Change begins with YOU.

That may seem to be a daunting task but it is really as easy as creating a plan – a plan for success. Marty Evans, one of the highest-ranking women in armed forces’ history and former leader of the nation’s most respected institutions, has followed seven easy yet effective steps throughout her career that have propelled her to a pinnacle of personal and professional achievement. Now she shares this practical, powerful plan with others to help fulfill their potential and realize their dreams.

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  • "Marty was great – people really enjoyed her!"