Blog Feature
Tony D'Amelio

By: Tony D'Amelio on October 26th, 2018

Print/Save as PDF

Audience "completely blown away" by Bill Walton

Speaking Industry | Motivation

"BILL WALTON is as good on stage as a speaker as he was on the court as a player. My client, the donors, and guests were completely blown away,” said the organizer from the Utah Clean Air Partnership fund-raiser. The email went on, "To be honest, our board of directors questioned my recommendation of Bill as the keynote speaker. After the event, they apologized for questioning me...profusely. We are not sure how we will top Bill's passion and the memorable delivery he gave at next year's event.”

This is why I love the work we do at DN. We have the chance to surprise audiences every week with the impactful ideas and insights of extraordinary experts and achievers. In Bill Walton's case, he gets this kind of over-the-top feedback every single time. His success as a speaker is rooted in a work-ethic that seems almost old-fashioned and most certainly comes from the influence of his upbringing and legendary college coach John Wooden.  Wooden was all about having a routine to prepare for every game.  Bill puts in the prep before the event and then delivers his maximum effort once onsite. “I’ll be the last guy leaving the building,” he often says with a smile. It’s his way of saying he will stay until the last person gets a selfie, a handshake, an autograph, or a conversation. Who does that anymore! That’s just Bill: He cares.



Caring may well be the most important aspect of Bill’s character. Bill is all-in when it comes to work, to community, to helping others, and to giving back. Three quick items to illustrate… 

Bill CAFFoundation-1



Last week Bill participated, as he does each year, in the Challenged Athletes Foundation Million Dollar Challenge. The 620-mile bike ride went from Monterey, CA to LaJolla, CA. Bill does two or three of these marathon bike rides each year.




Bill Walton gym



Earlier this month, in response to Bill’s support and philanthropy in the community, the Boys and Girls Club in his hometown of La Mesa, CA dedicated their new gymnasium in Bill’s name. Watch that touching video here






It’s not the first time Bill’s philanthropy in the greater San Diego community has been recognized. In 2016, this statue was dedicated to honor Bill’s sense of community. Note the statue is not of Bill playing basketball – but Bill with his beloved bike. 




BILL WALTON is one of the most colorful and recognizable sports figures in the world.  He may also be the happiest.  Named one of "50 Greatest NBA Players of All-Time," the Basketball Hall of Fame member played for two NBA Championship teams - the Portland Trail Blazers and the Boston Celtics.  He also played under legendary UCLA coach John Wooden - notching two national championships with the team that added to the 88-game winning streak - still a men's college basketball record.  Bill, a lifelong Grateful Dead fan, has seen over 880 shows (and counting) and continues his career as a broadcaster for Pac12 Conference college basketball games.  

The most-injured played in NBA history, Bill is one of the best motivational speakersfrom sports, talking to business audiences about personal achievement,leadership, team effort and his own challenges with spine health, multiple surgeries, and learning to speak. The journey from his childhood basketball court to the stage at meetings and conventions of top organizations is an unlikely journey. His inspiring message of grit and determination – overcoming speech disorder and enduring over 37 surgeries for sports-related injuries – serves as an example for everyone who dreams of accomplishing big things in their career and life.  Bill's autobiography, Back from the Dead, was a New York Times bestseller.  To watch video excerpts of speeches by Bill Walton click here. 

 For more information about  BILL WALTON and booking him as a speaker, contact D’Amelio Network: 


New Call-to-action

About Tony D'Amelio

Tony has spent his career putting talented people and audiences together, first in the music business and later representing the world's leading speakers. After concluding 27 years as Executive Vice President of the Washington Speakers Bureau, Tony launched D'Amelio Network, a boutique firm that manages the speaking activities of a select group of experts on business, management, politics and current events. Clients include: Mike Abrashoff, Geoff Colvin, Katty Kay, Polly LaBarre, Nicole Malachowski, David Meerman Scott, Bill Taylor, Bill Walton, and Bob Woodward.

  • Connect with Tony D'Amelio