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Dan Clark (motivational speaker)

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Dan Clark
Dan Clark makes a speech. He holds a microphone and is pointing toward the crowd.
Dan Clark as the closing main platform speaker
at Million Dollar Round Table.
Born (1955-03-14) March 14, 1955 (age 64)
OccupationMotivational speaker, author, CEO
Known forChicken Soup for the Soul, Public Speaking

Dan Clark (born March, 14 1955) is a professional motivational speaker, author, and CEO of Clark Success Systems. Clark is also on the International Board of Governors of Operation Smile and on the National Advisory Board for Operation Kids.

Clark is the author of twenty-one books,[1] and is a contributor to the Chicken Soup for the Soul[2] series.

Early life and education

Dan Clark was born in Mesa Arizona on March 14, 1955. Clark accepted a scholarship in football and baseball to the University of Utah where he majored in psychology.[3] He was a starting wide receiver his freshman year and the starting defensive end beginning his sophomore year. He was projected as a number one draft choice for the NFL Oakland Raiders in a confirmation letter from Ron Wolf and Al Davis.[citation needed]

Dan Clark during his football years.

During a tackling drill Clark cracked the 7th vertebra in his neck and severed the axillary nerve in his right shoulder.[1][3][4] Clark recovered full function in a couple of years[1] and was invited to speak to local high school kids about his recovery. From there Clark was invited to speak for Nancy Reagan's "Just Say No" campaign.[1]


In 1980 Clark acted as a consultant at Clark Financial Real Estate Development Corporation. In 1983 he started his own company, Dan Clark and Associates, where he was CEO. During this time he was sponsored into the National Speakers Association by Zig Ziglar who was his mentor.[5]

Dan Clark on the wing of a jet fighter in a flight suit.
Clark before a flight with the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds.

Clark conducted United Nations Leadership Training from 1990 to 1993 in the Philippines, Europe and the former Soviet Union, where one of his speeches aired live on Moscow One Television, broadcast to all 15 independent Russian States.[1] Clark was also the General Session Keynote Speaker at the United Nations (NGO) World Congress in Hamburg, Germany in 1992.[1]

After September 11, 2001, Clark was invited to attend the National Security Forum at Air War University and its equivalent conference at Army War College, and was commissioned to be a Character & Leadership Development Consultant/Lecturer for the United States military.[citation needed] He has since spoken at all five US military academies, at the National Conference on Ethics at West Point, the Character & Leadership Development Symposium at the Air Force Academy, and at the National Conference on Ethics at the Coast Guard Academy.[citation needed] In 2005, Clark traveled to Iraq and Afghanistan and spoke 23 times on 10 bases plus on the USS Harry S. Truman (CVN-75) aircraft carrier.[1]

In 2005, Clark was inducted into the National Speakers Hall of Fame and presented with the Council of Peers Award of Excellence (CPAE).[1]Template:Not in source cited Clark delivers 150 to 200 speeches a year.[3] In 2015, eSpeakers named him as one of the "Top Ten Motivational Speakers".[6]

Writing career

In 1983, Clark published his first book, Getting High - How To Really Do It. His third book, One Minute Messages, consisted of 250 of his own short stories of 24 lines each. Clark would give copies away to people he met on the condition that they promised to buy their own copy to give to someone. The book sold over 150,000 copies.[1]

Clark was approached by Mark Hansen and Jack Canfield, the co-creators of the Chicken Soup for the Soul series, about how he marketed One Minute Messages.[1] Clark became a primary contributing author to the Chicken Soup for the Soul series in 1993, contributing as an author and editor to its first 12 volumes. Clark's Chicken Soup for the College Soul was number two on the New York Times bestseller list in 1999, with over 1,000,000 copies in print.[7][not in citation given] One of Clark's short stories, Puppies for Sale, was turned into a short film starring Jack Lemmon.[1] As of February 2006, Clark has sold over 100,000 copies of Puppies for Sale at his speaking engagements.[1]


  • Getting High - How to Really Do It (1983) 5 reprintings
  • The Missing Link (1985)
  • One Minute Messages (1986) 5 reprintings
  • Weathering the Storm (1989)
  • Puppies for Sale and Other Inspirational Tales (1997)
  • The Best in Customer Service (1996)
  • The Best in Leadership (1996)
  • Chicken Soup for the College Soul (1999) co-author
  • Puppies for Sale Children's Classic (1999)
  • The Most Popular Stories by Dan Clark in Chicken Soup for the Soul (2004)
  • Forgotten Fundamentals: The Answers are in the Box (2007)
  • The Funniest Things Happen When You Look for Laughs (2007)
  • Lyrical Poetry (2007)
  • Rainbows Follow Rain (2007)
  • The Thrill of Teaching (2007)
  • Privilege of the Platform: The Art and Science of Public Speaking (2007)
  • Wisdom, Rhymes and Wizardry (2007)
  • Soul Food Volume I (2008)
  • Soul Food Volume II (2008)
  • The Art of Significance: Achieving the Level Beyond Success (2013)


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l Robinson, Doug. Motivator’s walk same as his talk, Deseret News (Salt Lake City, Utah). Published 26 Feb 2006. Retrieved 14 September 2009.
  2. ^ "Leadership Breakfast Featured Dan Clark". KFDX. July 22, 2016. Retrieved 27 July 2016.
  3. ^ a b c Lythgoe, Dennis. Utahn takes motivational message to Iraq, Deseret News (Salt Lake City, Utah). Published 28 April 2005. Retrieved 15 September 2009.
  4. ^ Gosse, J. Jacqueline. "Conversations with Dan Clark: Chicken Soup for the Soul contributing author and inspirational speaker finds his passion." Mayo Magazine. Published spring/summer 2003, pp 14-19.
  5. ^ Thorpe, Devin. "From The Edge Of Space, 5 Tips For Social Entrepreneurs". Forbes. Retrieved 27 July 2016.
  6. ^ Heaps, Joseph. "Top Ten Motivational Speakers". eSpeakers.
  7. ^ Awards & Recognition. Chicken Soup for the Soul. Retrieved 14 September 2009.

External links