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Captain Gerald Coffee

Vietnam POW Survivor

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Captain Gerald Coffee: Vietnam POW Survivor

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Captain Coffee brings to the platform a wealth of life experiences like no other speaker, especially in the challenging circumstances of today.

He is a highly decorated military officer: 28 years as a United States Naval officer and carrier pilot, including combat flights over North Vietnam, multiple deployments to the Mediterranean Sea and low level reconnaissance flights over Cuba during the Cuban Missile Crisis (His own missions over Cuba for which he received a Distinguished Flying Cross were highlighted in the film, Thirteen Days starring Kevin Costner.) Captain Coffee's military exploits are featured in several professional military publications. He was shot down over North Vietnam, captured and survived 7 years as one of the longest held prisoners in the Communist prisons in Hanoi. He has been a leader: As a POW, as the commander of an aircraft squadron, and as air operations officer for the US Pacific Fleet.

He holds a BA in Art from UCLA, a Masters Degree in Political Science from University of California at Berkeley, and is a graduate of the prestigious National Defense University in Washington, DC, studying all aspects of national security. He authored the highly acclaimed book, Beyond Survival, which is available on audio cassette and which inspired the award winning three act play, The Prisoner. He is currently working on his second book. He is a frequent talk radio and television show guest, having been on Larry King Live twice and CNN numerous times. He serves as military expert for Hawaii's NBC affiliate station. His opinion pieces have been published in various top publications, such as the Dallas Morning News, USA Today, and Parade Magazine.

He has spent 17 years as a professional speaker averaging over 80 presentations a year. He has spoken to tens of thousands of people across a broad spectrum of corporate America - AND to international groups as well - holding the National Speaker’s Association's highest rating of CSP and membership in the Speaker’s Hall of Fame. In a poll of corporate meeting planners, Captain Coffee was selected as one of the Top Ten Speakers in America. The prestigious Million Dollar Round Table selected him as one of its top twelve most popular, highest rated main platform speakers of the past 20 years from a field of over 80 speakers.

Captain Coffee's background, experience, positive message, and skill to convey that message enable him - perhaps uniquely - to address the emotional, intellectual, and spiritual challenges life presents. He, like few others, can -with authenticity - put the terrorist attacks on America and our war on terrorism into perspective.

“I have been with the association for 20 years, and I have never seen a speaker have the full undivided attention of the audience for their entire presentation.  You have been our most dynamic speaker to date.”
American Optometric Association

“I was a little hesitant about Capt. Coffee, former POW would he be too depressing?  All of my fears were unnecessary.  The audience was captivated, the message was uplifting…The response unanimously positive!”
Teleco Inc.

“A grand slam.  This is the third time you have addressed an NAED audience and the results have been the same…outstanding!”
Nat’l Assn. Of Electrical Distributors Inc.
Deloitte Consulting
Eastman Kodak
Ford Motor Co.
GE Appliances
Hyatt Hotels
Lucent Technologies
McDonalds of Australia
New York Life