Tommy Spaulding

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Tommy Spaulding is the founder and president of Tommy Spaulding Companies, a leadership development, speaking, training, and executive coaching firm based in Denver, Colorado. A world-renowned speaker on leadership, Spaulding has spoken to hundreds of organizations, associations, educational institutions, and corporations around the globe.


His first book, It’s Not Just Who You Know: Transform Your Life and Your Organization by Turning Colleagues and Contacts into Lasting, Genuine Relationships, published by Penguin Random House in 2010, quickly climbed to the top of the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and USA Today national bestseller lists. His new book, The Heart-Led Leader, published by Penguin Random House in October, 2015 is a New York Times and #1 Wall Street Journal national bestseller and was also listed on’s Top 100 Business Books of 2015.


Spaulding rose to become the youngest president and CEO of the world-renowned leadership organization, Up with People. In 2000, Tommy founded Leader’s Challenge, which grew to become the largest high school civic and leadership program in the state of Colorado. He is the founder and president of the Global Youth Leadership Academy as well as the National Leadership Academy, a leading national non-profit high school leadership development organization.


Previously, Spaulding was the business partner sales manager at IBM/Lotus Development and a member of the Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) program. He received a bachelor’s degree in Political Science from East Carolina University (1992); an MBA from Bond University in Australia (1998), where he was a Rotary Ambassadorial Scholar; and an MA in Non-Profit Management from Regis University (2005). In 2006, Spaulding was awarded the Outstanding Alumni Award by East Carolina University (ECU) and in 2007, Spaulding received an honorary Ph.D in Humanities from the Art Institute of Colorado. In September 2012 Spaulding was named by Meetings & Conventions Magazine as one of the 100 MOST FAVORITE SPEAKERS in the nation. Tommy now resides in the Denver Metro Area with his wife and children.

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Tommy connected. His story teaches two key lessons: the power of humility and how emotive leadership is a necessary element of a high-performance culture. Better still, he is an engaging speaker and simply great fun! - Roger Eaton CEO, KFC Global

Roger Eaton

One of my dad’s favorite sayings was, "If you fall in love with your work you will never have to work again." He repeated it often because he knew that love is not only the key to a fulfilling career; it’s a catalyst for continued success in business. In The Heart-Led Leader, Tommy unpacks this truth and, through real-world examples, clearly illustrates his own explanation, that, "Love and results are not opposites. They are two sides of the same coin." I strongly recommend this book to anyone looking to become a better leader, in the most effective way. - Dan T. Cathy Chairman & CEO, Chick-fil-A

Dan T. Cathy

Tommy masterfully illustrates case by case, person by person, that we’re all in this together. - Woody Johnson Owner, New York Jets

Woody Johnson

Tommy Spaulding’s speech inspired our leaders to focus on creating meaningful relationships with employees and guests in order to improve our business and their personal lives. - Scott Sibella President and Chief Operating Officer, MGM Grand

Scott Sibella