Keynote Talks | The Trauma Stewardship Institute

What We Do

Keynote Talks

Whether you invite 20 people or 2,000, we are able to provide a keynote talk for your community, workplace, or conference. There is no limit to the number of attendees, and participants from any and all professional disciplines or life circumstances will benefit.

Photo courtesy of Cathrine White Photography and the Joyful Heart Foundation

Laura van Dernoot Lipsky’s talks offer a compelling mix of personal insight and cutting-edge research. Filled with stories, quotes (by wise men and women from Bob Marley to Wangari Maathai), and countless New Yorker cartoons, they have been widely praised as both engaging and effective.

It has been said that no one is better than Laura at conveying the cumulative impact of ongoing exposure to suffering or trauma. Audience members frequently experience a shock of recognition as Laura describes the toll their work as helpers to other people or the planet may be taking on their personal and professional lives. For the first time, many understand what they have been going through.

Laura’s concept of stewardship is based around the idea that a deeper understanding of trauma exposure and the tools for navigating systems will enable people to do their work better. Her keynotes often touch listeners to the core, but she never fails to inspire audiences with laughter and a profound sense of hope. Many participants leave these sessions with a renewed sense of purpose and fresh optimism about the possibilities for transformation.


Laura's program allows participants to self-select their level of engagement. As participants, we are permitted the comfort of maintaining our zone of self-protection, but we are welcome to enjoy the relief that comes with the realization that we are all emotionally dented and dinged.  Some of us a little bit, some of us a lot.  Laura's interaction with the audience is occasionally pointed, often humorous, and unfailingly honest.  She creates a comfort zone, leads by example, and then invites her audience to fully engage the formidable and endless challenge of being honest with themselves. If you fully engage, your work is just beginning at the conclusion of the presentation. Laura’s program can change, and even save, lives.

Deirdre Walker

Senior Advisor
Center for Homeland Defense and Security, United States Naval Postgraduate School