Keynote Speakers

John Foley Photo

John Foley

Blue Angels Pilot

In 2015, John Foley was recognized as one of the top 10 most in-demand speakers. John has spoken to some of the highest-performing organizations, including but not limited to, Microsoft, Hitachi, Intel, Cisco, Mercedes-Benz, McDonalds, Bank of America, and Lowe’s.

He is a former lead solo pilot of the US Navy's Blue Angels, a Sloan Fellow at Stanford School of Business, a gratitude guru, and an expert in the how of High Performance teams. His exciting and unusual journey inspires awetriggering audiences to take action, and rethink what they believe is possible. John employs those intense realities as a metaphor to motivate teams and individuals to reach their highest potential while empowering organizations to sustain excellence under dynamic change.  

John’s presentations are marked by these three overriding traits:

  • A contagious attitude of thankfulness that he calls Glad To Be Here ®
  • An energizing delivery that inspires High Performance with a purpose larger than self
  • A practical model for living out his message that works in other organizations as well as within the Blue Angels

John used to regularly perform in extreme, high-stakes environments, flying at speeds of more than 500 miles per hour and in formations as close as 18 inches apart. To survive in those circumstances, he relied on a culture of high trust and leadership that turns inherently unforgiving flight into extraordinary experiences. He employs those intense realities as a metaphor to motivate teams to reach for their highest potential and empower organizations to sustain excellence under dynamic change.

John’s post-Naval experiences as an entrepreneur and a Sloan Fellow at the Stanford Graduate School of Business put him in a unique position to reverse-engineer the culture of excellence and teamwork found in the Blue Angels. He has created a framework and a methodology that inspires greatness while propelling others on their own journey toward Higher Performance.

John graduated from the US Naval Academy with a degree in mechanical engineering. He also was a defensive back for the Midshipmen, playing in two bowl games and helping Navy to one of the best four-year records in its football history. As a pilot, John was a "Top Ten Carrier Pilot" six times before becoming a Marine instructor pilot and a Blue Angel. He holds master’s degrees in business management, from the Stanford Graduate School of Business (as a Sloan Fellow), in international policy studies, from Stanford University, and in strategic studies, from the Naval War College.

In 2011, John founded the Glad To Be Here® Foundation. John donates 10% of his speaking fees to charities through the foundation. John works with every client to donate five percent to charities of their choosing. Through this program, over 100 charities and one million dollars have impacted thousands of lives globally. It’s part of his mission to connect a shared “purpose larger than self” with every organization.

Return to Keynote Speakers