Reviews

Directors, Advisors, and Educators

Laurie Wann, Director of Activities, Greenville High School

Julie Williamson, Mississippi DECA

Rob McKim, Principal, Mt. Baker Middle School, Auburn WA

Scott Smith, Assistant Principal, Nooksack Valley High School, Everson, WA

Jasimine Harris, Activities Director, Eastwood High School, El Paso TX

Maggie Bell, Activities Director, Century High School, MD

Matt Soeth, Activities Director, Kimball High School and Board Member CADA Board Member

“In over a decade of hiring speakers for our conferences, Scott is hands down the BEST speaker we have EVER had!

Chenique Murphy, Executive Director, HOBY Southern California

I’ve taught here for 22 years, and we’ve never had a standing ovation until Scott! The kids were so into his message and I think they really took it to heart.”

Sue Robinson, Activities Director, Nooksack High School, Everson, WA

As an activities director I find important to bring in speakers that can connect with my students on multiple levels. I look for a speaker who can be funny, serious, inspiring and motivational. Scott Backovich is all those things and more. Scott engages my students, he makes them laugh, he makes them think about their own lives and he reminds them to enjoy life. What I like most about Scott is when the microphone gets turned off and the students leave he is still there to work with student leaders, advisors and just take in the culture of the group. I have seen too many speakers get up and talk about their book that is for sale, or some website they are promoting. I have seen speakers drop the microphone and run out door before the applause even stopped. Scott isn’t just a speaker for hire, he wants to interact with the kids, the advisors, the students. He is a guy you may have to kick out of the building at the end of the day. That is what I like about Scott. While speaking is his profession, it is more his passion. If you can only hire one speaker for your teens, hire Scott.

Jimmy Gleich, Activities Director, Bishop Manogue HS, Reno NV

“Scott recently spoke at our state conference with over 1400 students. Out of all of the keynotes that we have had at this conference, he was by far the most engaging and entertaining. On top of that, he had a great message to convey that really stuck with the students. The youth still talk about his speech and the inspiration they received from it.

What most impressed me about Scott was that he truly has a passion for connecting with the students on their level. His dedication to what he does is evident; after he spoke he stayed for a few hours and interacted with every kid that wanted to speak to him. I cannot thank Scott enough for delivering a great speech and message!”

Leslie A. Moran, Director, Louisiana 4-h

“His style and delivery captivated student leaders and adults in grasping his message! Scott is professional, respectful, and insightful! We will welcome him back to New Mexico in a heartbeat!”

Mary Hahn, Executive Director, New Mexico Association of Student Councils

“Thank You Scott!! You were amazing!! Debriefing yesterday in class today was a true joy!! The kids talked about you all day today, definitely a home run!!

Darryl Andrews, Director of Activities, Yukon High School, Yukon OK

“Scott is different because he doesn’t demand anything. He simply asks students what they should be demanding from themselves and from each other… getting them to aspire to a higher calling, a higher purpose. Scott’s speech laid the groundwork for our entire leadership program.

Craig Sutphin, Director of Student Leadership, St. Mary’s HS, Berkeley, CA

“I wanted to let you know how much we enjoyed having you here. Honestly, kids and staff are still talking about it. You had a huge impact. I have been an activities director for 25 years and have had many speakers come to our school. You are definitely among the best we have ever had. Your message has resonated with our kids. In fact, the other day, a kid came up to me and told me that I looked like I could use a “hand hug” and this isn’t the type of kid who would normally do that. Shows how powerful your message is. I can’t thank you enough!”

Curt Chase, Activities Director, Pinon Mesa Middle School, Phelan, CA

“Scott spoke at our annual Pennsylvania Key Club District Convention/Leadership Conference in Hershey, Pennsylvania. He did an amazing job as the keynote speaker for the weekend. He is a dynamic and captivating individual who is able to connect with students and advisors. I would highly recommend Scott for any future leadership conferences.

Kristina Badali, Director, Pennsylvania District Key Club

“We’ve used Scott with great success for camps, conferences and convention. Students love his quirky, fun and impactful side. As a meeting planner, I love the fact that he is professional, dependable, safe and most of all – very low maintenance. Just give him a group of students, a time limit and let him do his magic. If you’re lucky, you might find a few dates on his calendar that he is not booked to speak in Oklahoma.”

Kent Boggs, Executive Director, Oklahoma FFA

Definitely one of the most popular speakers we’ve had over the years with the students! We would love for him to join us again in the future!*

Lona Kwan, California FBLA

“After his presentation at a leadership camp, my students insisted he come to our school. He was equally engaging with our entire student population and tailored his talk to incorporate our school theme of Brotherhood. Again, he motivated my students and inspired them. In addition to the school presentation, he did a small group workshop with my leadership students. That was fantastic! I recommend setting aside two hours and he will work with them and help them with more effective planning and cooperative work. Scott was able to creative an intense amount of positive energy with my students and motivate them to take on some additional projects as well as work more diligently on established events.”

Kristin McNeal, Director of Activities , Cathedral HS, Los Angeles, CA

Scott Backovich has a way of relating to students that I have never seen before in a motivational speaker. By relating to them, the empowering messages he shared were ones that students remembered, and I know they took what they learned back to their communities. He is a joy to work with, and his ability to cater to each group’s individual needs makes him the perfect addition to any seminar, assembly, or event. Scott is passionate about seeing youth become better versions of themselves, and he is committed to leaving a lasting impact upon all those with whom he speaks. His desire to stay connected to those who hear him speak shows the passion he has toward developing youth into phenomenal leaders.”

Mallory Cyr, Hugh O’Brian Youth Leadership Seminar / Program Assistant for Multicultural Programs at UNLV

“Scott has an amazing ability to connect and reach all students and adults on campus. He reached out well in advance to understand the needs of our students and personalized the time he spent on campus to not only meet, but exceed all of our expectations. I have had the pleasure of seeing Scott present to different audiences in different venues and am always blown away by his abilities.”

Ted Goergen, Activities Director, Adlai Stevenson High School, Stevenson, IL

Scott starts talking and the atmosphere changes – it’s electric. He has an immediate connection to students. He is informative, caring, honest, funny, and he ‘gets’ kids. When he speaks, they listen. Scott can motivate students to get involved right away in his speech and activities. We love Scott Backovich at Ceres High School and in our CADA Area A. He develops those special connections with students and Activity Directors that form friendships that are long lasting.”

Linda Cooper, Activities Director, Ceres High School

“I was fortunate to first hear Scott speak at a local Speaker Showcase for Activity Leaders/Advisors. The stories he told as his foundation were entertaining and had both students and adults hooked from the start. Sometimes I could see how he was going to relate it back to the big picture/message and sometimes I was pleasantly surprised! Scott has a high energy level which made him an obvious choice for our middle school. Not only did our students enjoy the assembly, but they were able to discuss the big picture/message back in their classrooms. After the assemblies, Scott conducted a Leadership Workshop with selected student leaders to build upon the assembly. They worked on goal-setting as well as identifying the smaller steps that needed to be taken and accomplished in order to reach the underlying goal.”

Jennifer Loesher, Activities Director, Sedway MS, Las Vegas, NV

“Scott was phenomenal! Engaging, passionate, and inspiring: Scott is everything you can hope for in a speaker. I look forward to having Scott back at our seminar for years to come!

Jordan Voegle, Seminar Director, HOBY Central California

“We invited Scott to our campus to not only set the tone for kindness on campus, but to work specifically with our young men on teamwork, partnership and keeping competition “healthy”. Our students thoroughly enjoyed his presentation and had several takeaway remarks that have become “buzz” phrases on campus. He is young, approachable and well organized. Furthermore, we were delighted that he was able to get and hold our student’s attention without needing to use shock value to engage the students. We look forward to working with Scott on an ongoing basis.”

Dr. Tara Rolle, Principal, St. Raymond School

“Scott is a dynamic and captivating speaker! He spoke to the entire senior class as well as many of the senior teachers for part of an all day assembly. He connects well with the audience and gives a lot of personal insight that keeps the listeners engaged. While his stories contain personal anecdotes, they all have messages that carry over to each person watching. He gives meaningful suggestions for motivation, not just words that sound good and fill time. I would highly recommend Scott. He is entertaining, and purposeful. I look forward to working with him again.”

Gina Nicoletta – Activities Director, Leigh High School, San Jose, CA

“As an Activities Director and former leadership student myself, Scott Backovich is one of the most relatable speakers/guests I have had the pleasure of sharing with my leadership class. My students become giddy when they hear he will be joining us for a retreat or presentation! One brief encounter with Scott and you know he is in tune with students enough to understand, not only what they want to hear, but what they need to hear. His heart belongs to student activities and that authenticity permeates everything he does. His dynamic, approachable, and welcoming personality, along with his talks and activities, are a leadership teacher’s dream.”

Amanda Forman, Activities Director, Wooster High School, Reno, Nevada

“Scott is such a delight to work with and did an exceptional job engaging with all of the participants at June Jam, whether that was during his keynote sessions, breakout sessions, sponsor session, or hanging out with the youth during free time. Scott’s message was spot on with the theme of our event, “Lights, Camera, Take Action!” He really motivated the youth with his message about being a catalyst and creating the change that they want to see. The youth left the event feeling empowered and energized to make a difference and that was because Scott is a great role model of what it means to be a catalyst. Thanks for all that you did for us at June Jam….you are a true difference maker!”

Amy Reynoldson, Director, June Jam Youth Conference, Lincoln, NE

“He did amazing things with our students, breaking them up into groups and facilitating tons of interaction. Honestly, the best conference we have ever had!”

Carey Simoni, Activities Director, Weston Ranch High School, Manteca, CA

Scott was the first speaker I hired as an Activities Director and I think I made the right choice. Some of my students had seen him at HOBY and they were very excited to hear he was coming. The crowd loved him, and the leadership training for my ASB students after the assembly was invaluable. Scott has continued to maintain contact with me and send me supplies to help build the leadership on campus. It was time and money well spent.

Derek Keith, Activities Director, Twentynine Palms High School, Twentynine Palms California

“Scott Backovich, with his humor, insight, and presence, immediately captured the attention of our entire student body. Scott’s message of “What will YOU do to make someone’s life better?” rang loud and clear with our high school. The positive feedback from students, both in person and on social media, has been overwhelming. In fact, many of our students are in contact with Scott to this day. One of my favorite moments of Scott’s visit occurred while we were walking back from the auditorium. One of our Redondo students passed by and unassumingly said, “Oh, hi Scott.” That simple moment encapsulated the genuine connection Scott was able to create with our students in a matter of less than an hour. Scott has a gift and our students and school are in a better place because of his visit. We look forward to continuing our engaging relationship with Scott as he will continue to work with leadership classes on our campus.”

Jens Brandt, Assistant Principal, Redondo Union High School

“Scott was only in our building for a few hours, but the impact that he left on our students was enormous. Scott spoke to our entire student body on the first day of school and students are still talking about it two months later.”

Matthew Starnes, Activities Advisor, Lebanon High School, Lebanon MO

As a student council advisor and parent, I found Scott to be just what our school needed. He reminds all of us to do our part to be the catalyst and more aware of the influence we have over others.
Scott is funny and connects with each person, so that you feel a friendship with him right from the start. He is passionate about working with kids and creating a positive school climate.
Not only does he do whole group sessions, but then stays to work with smaller groups based on your needs/interests. Helping leaders see what they can do through games and laughter, truly making the information stick.

We have plans for new ideas that will actually get done for the rest of the year, thanks to Scott! Our students are taking action to involve everyone and making school a great place to be for all.
So glad he came all the way from California to Iowa to spread his word! Wonderful experience for all of us at WHS!

Shannon Musser, Activities Director, Williamsburg High School

Book Scott! The students absolutely loved him. They could relate to him, and they really liked that his message was so simple yet so effective. Through a combination of funny anecdotes and meaningful stories, Scott was able to connect with our students like no other speaker we have had here at Carlmont. I highly recommend him. He will not disappoint!

Jim Kelly, Activities Director, Carlmont High School, Belmont, CA

Our school hired Scott for our annual school kick-off assembly. We have had several speakers before but none as memorable as Scott. Students in every grade were captivated by his words and silent for the duration of his presentation. Afterwards, they literally flocked to him to thank him for his motivational speech and to take their picture with him. His impact was so powerful. I strongly recommend him to any school looking to empower their students to be positive agents of change.

Amy Covell, Director of School Counseling, Ronald Wilson Reagan Middle School, VA

Having Scott come to our school was one of the best decisions we have ever made. He did so much more than just provide an assembly. Scott spent time training my leadership (SADD) team, talked with my administrators and presented to a parent group. His message goes far beyond just prevention issues, it speaks to the humanity in us. He made a difference in my school and has inspired my students with the desire to make a lasting difference in each other’s lives.

Kelly Pritchard, SADD Coordinator and Activities Director, Allen East High School, OH

As the District Student Assistance Coordinator, it is my responsibility to implement intervention and prevention programs to reduce substance abuse, mental health, bullying and other maladaptive patterns of behaviors within the school community. To achieve this, it is imperative that skill building programs and motivational speakers reach the mind of the students in a manner that allows them to understand the seriousness of the topic, and to develop a plan on how they can champion that very cause. How can they be part of the solution and not the problem?

Scott Backovich is a seasoned expert regarding key educational components which are detrimental in establishing an environment conducive to learning. He is not only a motivator; he is a role model to the students. He can reach their minds through laughter, compassion and the ability to relate to them on their level.

This highly motivated energetic problem solver would be a wonderful addition to any school district who wants to take a proactive approach in addressing key negative developmental issues

Dorene Zacher, District Student Assistance Coordinator, New Milford New Jersey

“Scott’s presentation makes students understand that within each of them is the power to “be a catalyst” and change not only their lives but the lives of others.’ The best testimonial to his ability comes from other speakers when they tell me he is the best! Scott is welcome in New Jersey anytime!”

Bill Oakley, Director, Elks State Peer Student Leadership Conference

“Scott made a tremendous difference in the way my students looked at each other! Since his visit to Ironwood Ridge High School, my students have gone out of their way to bring the school closer. The atmosphere is more positive and students are smiling more. He knows how to reach students and invoke positive changes on school campuses!”

Samantha Burgin, Student Government Advisor, Ironwood Ridge High School

“Scott’s visit to our school was THE highlight of our year and a major catalyst in our student council’s quest for cultural change. From 6 grade to 12th grade all students, staff and faculty were engaged in his motivational talk. There was not a person in the gym, where he spoke, who was not moved by his words!”

Erin Wilkinson, Director of Student Activities, Northland Preparatory Academy, Flagstaff, Arizona

“In a school where we often struggle to maintain student attention and respect during assemblies, when Scott got up to talk, you could have heard a pin drop. Scott has a way of relating to kids, and reaching them right where they are. I firmly believe every student heard the exact message he or she needed to hear that day! We would have him back to our school in a heartbeat!”

Jessica Lowry, Activities Advisor, Dallas High School, Dallas OR

“Scott was, bar none, the best speaker I have seen in my 12 years as a teacher and NHS advisor. Students from 14 different schools, all very diverse and unique, were working effectively working together within minutes of introductions. The ideas Scott presented were attainable and logical and best of all, include plans for reaching out to entire school populations-not just those who wish to be engaged. One NHS advisor at our conference remarked that Scott’s workshop was the best she had seen in her entire experience as well. Couple Scott’s personality and message with his professionalism, and you truly have an asset a school can use year in and year out in developing leaders and a thriving school culture.”

Ben Nesler, Director of Student Activities, Evergreen Park High School, Chicago IL

“Scott is an energetic and fantastic speaker! He was not only engaging and entertaining, but he was able to connect with the participants on a level which they completely identified with. Scott pulled at the participants heart strings with his story, motivating and inspiring youth for the future!”

Jason Davis, State Director, North Carolina FFA

“Scott’s ability to teach a powerful and relevant message through story-telling is his best asset. Our students were animated, appreciative, and maybe most importantly, challenged, all at the same time. We would have him back in a heartbeat.”

Joseph Piselli, House Principal, Central Bucks High School South

“*Scott was incredible!* Not only did Scott inspire the student leaders, but also the parents and program coordinators. Simply put, Scott was fantastic and we hope to have him at more of our events. Thanks Scott!”

Noel Loughrin, Riverside County Youth Commission

“We had the opportunity to have Scott come and speak to our school. We are a middle school/high school combination. I have never seen so many students engaged in a speaker before. I was worried about how our young students would react and they did perfectly. Scott was able to speak to them on a level that they could understand and be entertained at the same time. Our high school kids LOVED him. I had so many students come up to me afterwards and said how much they enjoyed the speaker. I was really glad and excited being that he was our first speaker at our school.

I hope that more schools take advantage of having him come and speak to your school. He is an amazing speaker who knows how to communicate with the kids with funny jokes all while giving powerful and needed information.

I would HIGHLY recommend Scott to speak at your school!”

Felicia Gray, Activities Director, Palmdale Aerospace Academy

“Scott brought a brand of energy and excitement that was relateable and fun for our kids. His breakout sessions were engaging and spot on with what we were looking for. He was generous with his time and very personable. We will definitely look to him in the future.”

Neil Wilhelm, Teacher/Intramural Coordinator, Woodburn High School

“I’ve been an activities director for over 20 years and have heard many speakers and as a result brought back to my school numerous speakers over the years. Scott is at the top of my “GO TO” list. He connects with both students and faculty with his humor and heartfelt message of taking personal responsibility to be positive change makers. His message will engage and resonate with your students and staff.”

Petra Davis, ASB Advisor, Las Flores Middle School, CA

“Scott recently spoke to our middle school students. He captivated every student the moment he began speaking and never lost their attention. Scott combined humor with personal stories to make the assembly come alive. He caused each of us to think about the impact we’re having on those around us! Truly a phenomenal morning!”

Stacy Marshall, 5th-8th Grade Principal/Director of Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment, Cody Middle School, Cody, CA

Students

bq. “I’ve been to State Conference all 4 years and National Conference for 3—you are BY FAR the best speaker I’ve ever heard!”

National FCCLA Officer, Orlando, FL

“I used to think of you as that one dude who spoke at our conference, but now I think of you as a guy who helped change my life.”

Student, Campbell CA

Best speaker I’ve ever heard. Funny and motivational. You rock. I will stop being the kid in the corner who thinks that doing nothing won’t affect me.”

Student, CA

“Thank you so much Scott. You did an amazing job today! That was by far the best assembly we have ever had and you inspired not only me, but everyone in the stands!”

Student, Tracy, CA

“I have to say I think your session was my favorite. I love your enthusiasm and excitement. It was great. You = Totally Awesome.

Student, CA

“You have been such an amazing inspiration! You have only spoke to me among a crowd and given me a high five, yet your enthusiasm has touched my heart and helped me discover myself as a leader! Thank you!”

Student, Ceres, CA

“Thank You so much for today. On behalf of Overfelt and the Senior Class, Thank You. I got a lot of awesome feedback and a lot of my peers said that it was nice to finally interact with someone we can relate to. Everybody had a blast! Again, thank you very much!”

Student, San Jose, CA

“I’ve been to many leadership seminars and have heard countless motivational speakers. However, you are, by far, the most honest, passionate, talented, and YOUNG speaker I’ve ever heard! You have truly inspired me to make a difference in my community and I think after your speech last Friday, all of us were speechless. Thank you!”

Student, Irvine, CA

“Scott! You are the coolest speaker ever! Honestly the message you had was so perfect because that’s how all of us felt, we were all afraid to use the potential we had to do something great! You changed that for all of us and I would like to personally thank you!”

Student Leader, Berkeley CA

“Your presentation at the 4-H State Leadership Conference was absolutely phenomenal. As a 4-Her I’ve sat through speaker after speaker. Out of all of them I have to say you kept me interested, entertained, and truly taking in what you had to offer. I loved the interaction and perfectly balanced humor. Thank you so much for being an awesome speaker and person.”

Student, Merced, CA

“Thank you so much for coming today! Never before has any motivational speaker moved me in such a way, and I think this is because you took the time to connect with us. You showed us that you are ONE of us. Not just an observer, but a witness. I will carry the memory of today in my heart for the rest of my life. Thank you.”

Student, Washington

“Thank you so much Scott! I am the president of our Interact Club so i’ve heard speakers from all over, but none as gripping as you! You are a true inspiration Scott! I thank you.”

Student, Cloverdale CA

“Scott was amazing! He makes us think about what what we have to give because we are too busy thinking about what we take instead of what we give. We have a lot to give if we try!”

Student, California

“Scott, you came into our school just another boring assembly speaker, and came out an inspiration, best friend, and hero. We truly took your words to heart. I am so glad that I’ve had the pleasure of hearing your speeches twice, and you never fail to impress. The world is privileged to have such a wonderful person. Thank you, thank you, thank you, Scott Backovich!”

Student, California

“I’ve been going to June Jam for 4 years now and I have never experience such a positive and motivated reaction from kids after June Jam that you caused this year! After your secret support activity and your speech about how to be a catalyst, I’ve heard so many kids open up about their problems at home and their own personal struggles and how they plan on fixing them and making them better. They are inspired to help each other and help themselves out! THAT is the outcome we want out of June Jam. For kids to come out with more confidence and a sense of responsibility for how they control their life and what becomes of their Life. We can’t thank you enough for all of your help! “

Ann, Student Advisory Board President, June Jam, Lincoln, NE

I’m a new student this year in Virginia. I moved from New Jersey and I miss all my friends so much. I’ve made friends here, but I’ve still been feeling down. Today was the first day I felt a real happiness since I’ve moved. Scott came in to speak today and it was extraordinary. 27932692 stars out of 5. He was funny, amazing, touching, just overall great.I’m so glad I got to experience him coming and speaking at my new school. Thanks so much Scott!

Alex, Student, Haymarket VA

“Scott was a huge hit at our school. He has a great stage presence and engages everyone in the audience. Everyone left the assembly with a positive and ambitious attitude that is still with the students today.

When he talked to our Student Council class, he did a great job with focusing on what we were trying to do at our school and what problems we were encountering. He had great steps and tips that will help us out a lot in the following year. He was very real and upfront with us while also being funny and relaxed. He is amazing at what he does. Shelby Dent Junior at FHS

Shelby, Student, Flagstaff High School, Flagstaff, AZ

Want to talk with a past client personally?

We would too if we were hiring a speaker. These 3 contacts are changed/rotated regularly with others so that you always have access to clients who you can personally talk to.

Dan Vu
(Northern California Youth Leadership – Seminar Leadership Conference/Workshops)
Phone: 510-332-6266
Email: homerfan33@gmail.com

Mallory Cyr
(Hugh O’Brian Youth Leadership Seminar – Leadership Conference)
Phone: 702-375-1680
Email: malloryacyr@gmail.com

Monica Schneider
(Overfelt High School Activities – Director High School Assembly)
Phone: 408.347.6043
Email: SchneiderM@esuhsd.org

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