Engaging, Humorous & Inspirational

None of our speakers has done a better job than Rudy Kalis!  Rudy, in addition to excellent communication skills, lives the character and ethics he speaks about and every person in the room knows it!
-Nelson Early
Founder and CEO, Early & Company


Rudy Kalis talks about determination, discipline, faith, and character in an inspirational way that will help you to believe that there’s a purpose and direction in your life.

There’s an old quote from former UCLA great basketball coach John Wooden which states, “Things turn out the best for those who make the best of the way things turn out.”

That’s one of the key points that Rudy Kalis shares with audiences. Using the twists and turns of his own life, he’s found out that it’s not where you start from, or how many times you fall, but how many times you get back up that defines you as a person.

Rudy will share valuable insights such as a lesson in communication that he learned first- hand from former heavyweight champion Muhammad Ali, the power of remembering names taught to him by Jack Nicklaus, and the secret to motivation which he learned from a personal encounter with Lou Holtz when he was the coach of the national champion Fighting Irish of Notre Dame.

His most requested topic is, “As You Go through Life, Keep Your Helmet On” which is also the title of his new book. In an engaging, humorous, and inspirational way, Rudy walks audiences through the irony of his own life’s journey, from staring at the Statue of Liberty at the age of five as the ship carrying his immigrant family coasted into New York harbor, to crying each day of the first two weeks of school not wanting to go because he couldn’t speak English. Life’s lessons start early Rudy believes.

The Positive Results of Having Good Character

In the business world, Rudy will tell you that character begins at the top and you can’t have it both ways. Character is what you are when nobody is looking. There is a line in an old song by George Michael which says “guilty feet have got no rhythm.”  You can’t be staring at pornography on the Internet, or cheating your boss, or lying to your customers, and then go home and be a good family loving husband or wife. The positive, productive energy will be drained from your life. Guilty feet have got no rhythm.

Using thought-provoking questions he will make every member of the audience think about how they approach work and life. He helps audiences truly understand that if the leader of an organization or a business has character and demands it from his or her employees, they will always be unique, successful, and more importantly, they will pass on a legacy of honesty and integrity to the next generation.

Character Building

Rudy believes that life lessons take many turns, both up and down for everyone. He covers with the audience how to meet the challenges of life, including the success he had after flunking out of college and then spending four years in the Air Force where he learned the true meaning of discipline. Not one to give up, he went back to college and majored in mass communications, which began his path down the road to being one of the nation’s premiere television sportscasters.

He reminisces with audiences the interesting story of landing his first job because he looked the news director “straight in the eye,” but then being told by consultants that he ought to get out of broadcasting because he wasn’t good enough. This is a man who really opens up and gets audiences to see the power within each of us, for work, for family, for play, for life.

Rudy openly shares how he has dedicated his life to offering hope and encouragement through the vehicle of sports and television. He married the woman of his dreams over 25 years ago after meeting her at a dating game, but the lessons in life continued. There was the challenge of raising two daughters (who were unfortunately born cute and attractive to boys). There was also the head-on collision into a wall at the Nashville Speedway in a race car that resulted in 150 stitches, a broken neck, and a clear signal from God that he could take it all away in a heart beat.

And finally, Rudy also talks about overcoming another challenge that came after 30 years of broadcasting when the direction of his life was changed by another visit to the general manager’s office.

Rudy Kalis talks about determination, discipline, faith, and character in an inspirational way that will help you to believe that there’s a purpose and direction in your life as well, but just remember “As You Go through Life, Keep Your Helmet On.”