African American Speakers

Inspire your audience with a keynote speech from one of the famous African American motivational speakers on our roster. Leading Authorities speakers bureau represents the best and brightest Black motivational speakers, media personalities, well-known political strategists, members of the US Congress, best-selling authors, black female motivational speakers, and more. We connect Fortune 500 companies, leading professional organizations, and civic groups with the most sought-after speakers, and our roster of African American talent celebrates the importance of diversity within modern society. Don't wait to secure your motivational speaker for Black History Month. Our most celebrated Black motivational speakers are in high-demand during this time of the year.

Let us know if you are interested in one of our speakers for your event.

First African American Army Surgeon General and Former Commanding General, US Army Medical Command

Fees
  • Local: $20,001 - $35,000*
  • US East: $20,001 - $35,000*
  • US West: $20,001 - $35,000*
  • Europe: $35,001 - $55,000*
  • Asia: $35,001 - $55,000*

A trailblazer in female leadership, Lieutenant General (ret) Nadja West is the 44th Army Surgeon General and the former Commanding General of US Army Medical Command. She is the first African American woman 3-star General in the Army’s history, the first African American Army Surgeon General, and currently the highest-ranking woman to ever graduate from West Point. West shares her story of grit, perseverance, strength, and breaking boundaries, even when faced with adversity. Taking audiences on her journey to becoming the Army’s first African American woman 3-star General and Black female leader, she motivates them to overcome challenges with self-belief, bravery, and balance. With more than 20 years of experience in executive leadership, crisis management, and disaster response – including crafting the DOD medical response to the Ebola crisis – West speaks expertly on leadership tactics to effectively lead teams through times of uncertainty and crisis.

Journalist and Television Personality

Fees
    Please Inquire

Jonathan Capehart is a journalist and television personality who has worked as a policy advisor to Michael Bloomberg’s campaign, a national affairs columnist, and was a member of the Daily News editorial board which won the 1999 Pulitzer Prize for Editorial Writing. Highly popular Black inspirational speaker, he currently writes for The Washington Post’s PostPartisan blog and is a contributor for MSNBC.

Former Chief of Police in Seattle, WA

Fees
  • Local: $10,001 - $20,000*
  • US East: $20,001 - $35,000*
  • US West: $20,001 - $35,000*
  • Europe: $35,001 - $55,000*
  • Asia: $35,001 - $55,000*

The first African-American woman to hold the top policing job in Seattle, Washington, Carmen Best served with the Seattle Police Department for 28 years. In 2018, Best was promoted to Chief of Police, a job she called “a dream of a lifetime.” Best quickly began efforts to diversify the police force, which had long been less diverse than the city, recruiting more than 40 new officers of color. Black female speaker Chief Best speaks on diversity, inclusion, and leadership lessons learned guiding a police department during times of crisis.

Grammy-Nominated Creator of "Poetic Voice" & Inspirational Speaker

Fees
  • Local: $35,001 - $55,000*
  • US East: $35,001 - $55,000*
  • US West: $35,001 - $55,000*
  • Europe: $75,001 and up*
  • Asia: $75,001 and up*

A school teacher turned actor, musician, two-time national poetry slam champion, entrepreneur, and award-winning poetic voice, any given day may now find Sekou keynoting at a leadership conference, helping a Fortune 500 company with brand messaging, or even performing pieces for Barack Obama in Oprah’s backyard. Black public speaker Sekou Andrews is the creator of Poetic Voice, a new, cutting-edge speaking category that seamlessly fuses inspirational speaking with spoken word poetry to make messages more moving and memorable. For over 15 years, Sekou Andrews has been helping the world’s largest organizations deliver relevant information with riveting inspiration through an innovative, unconventional category of speaking called “Poetic Voice.”

Boxing Champion, Elite Athlete, Fitness & Nutrition Expert, TV Host, Beauty & Lifestyle Brand CEO, Actress, Advocate for Children, Author, &Speaker

Fees
  • Local: $55,001 - $75,000*
  • US East: $55,001 - $75,000*
  • US West: $55,001 - $75,000*
  • Europe: $75,001 and up*
  • Asia: $75,001 and up*

Laila Ali is a world-class athlete, fitness & nutrition expert, TV host, cooking enthusiast, founder of the Laila Ali Lifestyle Brand and mother of two. The daughter of late beloved global icon and humanitarian, Muhammad Ali, she is a four-time undefeated boxing world champion, whose stellar record includes 24 wins (21 of which were "knockouts") and zero losses. African American female motivational speaker Laila Ali is heralded as the most successful female in the history of women’s boxing.

Former President and COO of Nintendo of America Inc.

Fees
  • Local: $55,001 - $75,000*
  • US East: $55,001 - $75,000*
  • US West: $55,001 - $75,000*
  • Europe: $75,001 and up*
  • Asia: $75,001 and up*

An award-winning innovator and disruptor, Reggie Fils-Aimé is a proven expert on transforming companies, re-vitalizing brands, and reshaping industries to solve daunting challenges and achieve ‘the impossible.’ Most recently, he was the president and chief operating officer of Nintendo of America – the first American and African-American to hold this position and is now an influential Black speaker. Revered by business leaders and gaming fans alike, Fils-Aimé helped bring Nintendo’s greatest successes – including the Nintendo DS, the Wii, the Nintendo 3DS, Wii U, and the Nintendo Switch – to the global marketplace. Using his personal story as an example, he shares with audiences his principles for effective and innovative leadership, including defining a vision, courage in decision-making, and “irrefutable integrity.”

Former Interim Chair of the Democratic National Committee (DNC), Renowned Political Strategist and Commentator, and Best-selling Author

Fees
  • Local: $10,001 - $20,000*
  • US East: $10,001 - $20,000*
  • US West: $20,001 - $35,000*
  • Europe: $35,001 - $55,000*
  • Asia: Please Inquire

Political strategist Donna Brazile is the former interim chair of the DNC, as well as the former vice chair for civic engagement and voter participation at the DNC, an adjunct professor, current Fox News contributor, best-selling author, syndicated columnist, and television commentator. She was also the first African-American woman to manage a presidential campaign. Her southern charm, big personality, and hilarious anecdotes make her an instant audience favorite. Oprah’s O magazine chose her as one of its “20 remarkable visionaries” and Washingtonian named her one of its “100 most powerful women.” As a popular Black political speaker, Brazile is known for her ability to analyze the political climate and attract supporters, and she addresses this and the political mood of the country.

Legendary NBA Player

Fees
  • Local: $75,001 and up*
  • US East: $75,001 and up*
  • US West: $75,001 and up*
  • Europe: $75,001 and up*
  • Asia: $75,001 and up*

Earvin "Magic" Johnson is a retired American professional basketball player. One of the most famous African American speakers on the circuit, he was rated the greatest NBA point guard of all time by ESPN in 2007 and since his retirement, Johnson has been an advocate for HIV/AIDS prevention.

Astrophysicist, Former Space Science Education Lead for NASA, & Inspirational Speaker

Fees
    Please Inquire

Dr. Hakeem Oluseyi has three degrees, 8 U.S. patents, four E.U. patents and has hosted shows on the Science Channel and on Discovery. But more impressive is his life story. Oluseyi grew up in the roughest neighborhoods of America, learned to survive on the street, and still taught himself Einstein’s theory of relativity from an old set of encyclopedias. At every turn he was presented with a compelling option to quit and yet he persevered. Today, he is a NASA astrophysicist, a global educator, and the author of a highly-anticipated upcoming memoir A Quantum Life: My Unlikely Journey from the Streets to the Stars where he recounts his journey from the streets to the stars. Motivational and inspirational speaker Dr. Oluseyi is exclusively represented by Leading Authorities.

Founder of FUBU & Star of Shark Tank

Fees
  • Local: $55,001 - $75,000*
  • US East: $55,001 - $75,000*
  • US West: $55,001 - $75,000*
  • Europe: $75,001 and up*
  • Asia: Please Inquire

Daymond John is CEO and Founder of FUBU, a much-celebrated global lifestyle brand, and a pioneer in the fashion industry with over $6 billion in product sales. Famous Black speaker and award-winning entrepreneur, he has received over 35 awards including the Brandweek Marketer of the Year, Advertising Age Marketing 1000 Award for Outstanding Ad Campaign, and Ernst and Young's New York Entrepreneur of the Year Award. His marketing strategies and ability to build successful brands has made him a highly influential consultant and motivation speaker. In 2009, he joined the cast of ABC's entrepreneurial business show Shark Tank.

Chief Policy Officer at Lyft and Former United States Secretary of Transportation

Fees
  • Local: $20,001 - $35,000*
  • US East: $20,001 - $35,000*
  • US West: $20,001 - $35,000*
  • Europe: $35,001 - $55,000*
  • Asia: $55,001 - $75,000*

Anthony Foxx is the Chief Policy Officer at Lyft who formerly served as the 17th United States Secretary of Transportation and as mayor of Charlotte, North Carolina and an in-demand Black keynote speaker. As Secretary of Transportation, he led an agency with more than 55,000 employees and a budget of $70 billion. A digital cities innovator known as "the Great Connector" for his work in government, he discusses the American transportation system, digital cities, innovation, and coalition building.

Acclaimed Political Commentator and Host of PBS's “In Principle”

Fees
    Please Inquire

Amy Holmes is a familiar face with an unconventional voice in political news. As an on-air political analyst and Black conservative speaker, Amy dissects and debates the issues of the day, appearing regularly on CNN, MSNBC, Fox News and PBS. She is the host of the PBS weekly program "In Principle," and the former host of the daily MSNBC morning show Way Too Early. In addition to working with TheBlaze and MSNBC, she co-hosted the Washington Times and Talk Radio Network's America’s Morning News, a nationally-syndicated morning radio show heard coast-to-coast by over 1.5 million listeners daily.

Vice Chairman, Global Wealth Management & Senior Client Advisor At Morgan Stanley

Fees
  • Local: $35,001 - $55,000*
  • US East: $35,001 - $55,000*
  • US West: $35,001 - $55,000*
  • Europe: Please Inquire
  • Asia: Please Inquire

Carla Harris is Vice Chairman of Wealth Management and Senior Client Advisor at Morgan Stanley. She was Chair of the Morgan Stanley Foundation from 2005 to 2014, and sits on the boards of several community organizations. In August 2013, Carla was appointed by President Barack Obama to chair the National Women’s Business Council. She is a gospel recording artist and a popular Black public speaker who gives impactful career guidance to corporate audiences based on her book, “Expect to Win.” Carla joined Morgan Stanley in 1987 after completing an AB in economics from Harvard University and an MBA from Harvard Business School.

Innovator and CEO, Uncharted Power

Fees
  • Local: $10,001 - $20,000*
  • US East: $20,001 - $35,000*
  • US West: $20,001 - $35,000*
  • Europe: $35,001 - $55,000*
  • Asia: Please Inquire

Jessica O. Matthews is the Founder & CEO of Uncharted Power, an award-winning energy and data technology company that develops infrastructure solutions for communities, facilities, and Internet of Things. The company was founded by Jessica when she was only 22 years old. Jessica’s research and career centers around the intersection of disruptive technology, renewable energy, human behavior, and the psychology of self-actualization. A dual citizen of Nigeria & the U.S. and Black female speaker, Jessica has a degree in Psychology and Economics from Harvard University, an MBA from Harvard Business School, and is listed on over 10 patents and patents pending—including her first invention of the SOCCKET, an energy generating soccer ball, at the age of 19.

Youngest Trader, Only Female and Second-Ever African American Woman at the New York Stock Exchange

Fees
  • Local: $20,001 - $35,000*
  • US East: $20,001 - $35,000*
  • US West: $20,001 - $35,000*
  • Europe: Please Inquire
  • Asia: Please Inquire

At 22 years old, Lauren Simmons shattered the glass ceiling and made history by being the youngest and only full-time female equity trader on Wall Street for Rosenblatt Securities. Affectionately called the “Wolfette of Wall Street,” Simmons was also the second African American woman in history to hold the prestigious title and is now one of the most in-demand black women speakers on the circuit. Since Lauren’s departure from the trading floor, she is now a multifaceted entrepreneur, an author, personal finance expert, global motivational speaker, producer, and director. She was also named to Harper’s Bazaar’s “Woman Who Dare” 2019 list. Currently, Simmons is executive producing a biopic of her life story with AGC studio – starring Kiersey Clemons and scheduled to release in summer 2021. Additionally, Lauren is the host of Going Public a new financial tv series on Entrepreneur.com coming out spring 2021.

Invite The Top Black Motivational Speakers To Your Event

Keep audiences talking long after your event with the experience our African American speakers bring to the stage. As the top black motivational speakers in the industry, these men and women are engaging, insightful, and favorites of audiences.

The best part is the Black speakers we represent are the perfect fit for a variety of events and budgets. Need Black female motivational speakers for a women’s business event? Happy to help. What about a Black political strategist with the know-how to steer candidates to success? Problem solved. Interested in securing a top Black motivational speaker or inspirational speaker? We've got you covered. We can fill your Black History Month speaker lineup with some of the most celebrated Black history experts and keynote speakers.

At Leading Authorities speakers bureau, we’ll help you secure the perfect speaker for your program and be there every step of the way to ensure you pull off an unforgettable and successful event. Our team of seasoned professionals, which offers more than 20 years of experience in the speaking and meeting planning industry, works with you one-on-one to find the perfect keynote speaker. Whether you’re searching for Black women motivational speakers on innovation, inspiration, or leadership or a famous African American figure, we’ll find a speaker that matches your budget, audience, and goals. And to make it even better, we handle all the logistics and event add-ons.

Browse through our top African American keynote speakers listed above and click on any of the speaker's photos to see their individual speaker profile pages and read more about their expertise and speaking topics.

Didn't find what you were looking for? Browse through our motivational speakers to find the perfect speaker for your in-person, hybrid, or virtual event.

For more information about our expansive roster of elite keynote speakers or to book one of these talented Black speakers for your next event or meeting, contact our team today. 

You can also email us, call 1-800-SPEAKER, or live chat with a member of our team right now.