Ethan Zohn is a humanitarian, inspirational speaker, and television host; former professional soccer player; cancer survivor, and advocate; three time contestant of the hit reality television show, CBS’s Survivor and winner of Survivor: Africa. So, what would you do if you won a million dollars? What Ethan Zohn did might surprise you.
- Motivation & Inspiration
- Servant Leadership
- Social Entrepreneurship
- Team Building
GETTING TO KNOW
Ethan Zohn is a humanitarian, inspirational speaker and television host; former professional soccer player; cancer survivor and advocate; winner of the hit reality television show, CBS’s Survivor: Africa; contestant on season 40 of Survivor: Winners at War, author and inventor; and co-founder of the global non-profit, Grassroot Soccer. He has found purpose through his humanitarian work and community involvement and believes that a better and healthier world can be achieved through education, advocacy, and inspiration.
In 2002, Ethan used a portion of his Survivor: Africa winnings to help found Grassroot Soccer (GRS), an adolescent health organization that leverages the power of soccer to educate, inspire, and mobilize at-risk youth in developing countries to overcome their greatest health challenges, live healthier, more productive lives, and be agents for change in their communities. To date, the organization has reached over 13 million youth in over 60 countries with critical health information, access to health services, and mentorship. Ever the tireless and creative promoter, in 2008, Ethan embarked on a record-breaking 550-mile journey on foot, from Boston, MA to Washington, D.C., dribbling a soccer ball the entire route, to raise money and build awareness for GRS.
In 2009, as a fit, active, 35-year-old former professional soccer player who had traveled the world on behalf of the international health community through Grassroot Soccer, Ethan became an unlikely face of cancer. Diagnosed not once but twice with CD20+ Hodgkin’s Lymphoma in the span of several years, Ethan endured years of aggressive treatment, including two stem cell transplants. Never losing optimism, spirit, or humor despite extraordinary rigors and setbacks, Ethan used his journey and considerable platform to connect with others – young adults in particular – and offer much-needed inspiration, advice, and comfort.
As demonstrated by his charitable work with various global and domestic health and wellness organizations, and community involvement Ethan believes his inspiration to help heal the world stems from being taught at an early age the importance of kindness, community and a connection to social goodness
Surviving to Thriving
For Ethan Zohn, winning CBS’s SURVIVOR: Africa was the springboard to an exceptional life of entrepreneurship, social purpose, advocacy, and the prelude to an incredible story, one of perseverance, accomplishment, and enduring spirit in the face of once-unthinkable challenges.
The Survivor has defined Ethan for most of his adult life, and he has shed this label and shifted from Surviving to Thriving. Ethan is an expert at surviving any situation, especially cancer and has survived the harsh elements of an isolated life on a deserted island during his three seasons competing on the hit CBS reality show, Survivor Africa, Survivor All-Stars, and the Survivor 40: Winners At War.
A fit, active, 35-year-old former professional soccer player who had traveled the world on behalf of the international health community through his foundation, Grassroot Soccer, Ethan became an unlikely face of cancer. Diagnosed not once, but twice with CD20+ Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, Ethan endured years of aggressive treatment, including two stem cell transplants, over 260 days in isolation, and mandatory social distancing for years following treatment.
Never losing optimism, spirit, or humor despite extraordinary rigors and setbacks Ethan developed the strategies for Survivorship and the “Isolation Survival Guide” that can help comfort people and communities questioning this uncertain and fearful time of health and social distancing.
- Survival tips and strategies pre, during and post cancer.
- Exercise and alternative medicine that add comfort, control and confidence for anyone facing a health challenge
- How to overcome anxiety and the fear of uncertainty,
- How to be productive and creative in isolation or facing a health challenge
- How to care for others and the importance of focusing on the plight of others helps you heal
- How to be authentic, honest, and laugh more in life
A Survivor’s Guide to Life: Outwit, Outplay, Outlead
In this keynote, Ethan begins with the question, “What would you do if you won a million dollars?” It’s a thought-provoking question that became a reality for the former professional soccer player and coach. After he had won $1-million on Survivor: Africa, Ethan invested his winnings in something much bigger than himself, a non-profit organization called Grassroot Soccer which uses the power of soccer to educate, inspire and mobilize young people to overcome their greatest health challenges. It was a decision that perfectly matched his values and character: putting his good fortune to work for a cause greater than himself.
That decision alone would make him a compelling speaker on character and service to others, however in 2009, Ethan was diagnosed with a rare form of Hodgkins Lymphoma and became an unlikely face of cancer. Diagnosed not once but twice with CD20+ Hodgkin’s Lymphoma in the span of several years, Ethan endured years of aggressive treatment, including two stem cell transplants. While he endured the rigors of cancer treatment, he became a national spokesperson for many cancer charities including Katie Couric’s Stand Up to Cancer, Leukemia Lymphoma Society, First Descents as well as a documentary style weekly video blog on People Magazine’s website. Millions watched Ethan fight the highs and lows of aggressive cancer treatment – his interest in service stronger than ever.
A Survivor’s Guide to Life is Ethan’s chance to share his extraordinary journey to anyone looking for a way to make a difference in the world. For Ethan, life’s opportunities and challenges were faced with confidence by drawing on his values and character. In the keynote, Ethan delves deeply into the issue of character and resiliency with his audience: where it comes from, why it matters and how it can help them make important decisions in their lives.
Ethan relates the character-building moments in his life to illustrate how character is built and why it is important to develop, nurture and refine our character throughout our lives. “You never know when you will need the reserves of your character, but when you do, you better be sure you are up to the challenge,” he said.
Character is difficult to define, but Ethan puts it into terms that people can relate to, and he sprinkles in personal stories from Survivor, pro soccer, battling cancer, and other experiences in his unique life. The values of honesty, integrity, friendship and honor—are as important in today’s society as ever.
With his remarkable sense of humor and his honesty, he offers a keynote that inspires the audience to answer life’s opportunities with strength and conviction of character.
- Specific tools to help use character as a guiding principle in their life journey and to become a better leader,
- The importance of getting involved in your community through service and charity,
- How to ensure that all challenges, big and small, turn into opportunities that improve the lives of themselves and others.
Surviving the Amazing Race of Corporate America
People love reality TV competitions because they can watch others react to the unknown. As the contestants are forced out of their comfort zone, will they embrace the experience to learn and grow from the challenges, or give in to the drama and fall apart?
Strategy-based TV shows are similar to the incredibly complex world of the corporate lifestyle. Work is also a game of relationships that one must navigate every day – the relationship with yourself, your coworkers, your boss, your friends and your family. Add social media to the mix, and it can feel like your every move is publicly on display – becoming a struggle to get more “likes” and acceptance while also allowing yourself to be compared to and judged by others.
Ethan had very different experiences on two shows, having won Survivor and been embarrassingly eliminated from The Amazing Race in the first few episodes.
Over the last 20 years, his life has played out in TV, print, and social media. Ethan is also no stranger to overcoming challenges off-camera, having experienced the loss of his father at an early age and becoming a two-time cancer survivor. Under these pressures, he learned incredible lessons about forming relationships, building self-confidence, failure, creating a work-life balance, becoming a connected leader, and overcoming obstacles.
In this keynote, Ethan shares his strategies for staying resilient in the face of life’s biggest challenges and creating positive relationships that will help your audience succeed in business and in life.
- How to use their time on this planet to make a valuable contribution to their personal development and the community around them,
- How to approach obstacles as opportunities for growth, and
- How to build a successful business, business relationships and a lasting legacy in life through authentic relationships, leading by example, and serving others.
- Community-powered approaches to social impact
King of Kush : Cannabis Entrepreneurship and Advocacy
The severities of both Ethan’s illness and its treatment, coupled with the debilitating anxiety of his cancer coming back post-treatment, led Ethan to experiment with, and ultimately adopt, cannabis and CBD as a form of palliative care.
The relative scarcity of safe, controlled options for cancer patients and other sufferers of acute illnesses, compounded by the overwhelming misinformation in a fast-growing legalized marketplace about use of CBD and cannabis, spurred Ethan to go public with his story and advocate for common sense use, regulation and education.
He shared his story with People Magazine and worked with CannabisMD.com as an advisor and content editor to create an original short film that documents how medical Cannabis helped him through his treatment and how CBD and cannabis became the cure for his crippling anxiety.
Ethan was named Chief Purpose Officer of MONTKUSH Farms, a 116 acre USDA certified organic hemp farm in Plainfield VT. As an investor and global ambassador for MONTKUSH, Zohn will lead the efforts on programs to help educate and support industry initiatives while creating partnerships with research institutions and charitable organizations that best align with the overall purpose and goals. Ethan was a featured character in VICE TV’s hit reality show Kings of Kush and was named the global brand ambassador for Truleive Cannabis and their wellness brand, Momenta.
Zohn’s moderating point of view, born out of his personal experience and concern for the public good, puts him at the center for an escalating dialog in the United States and internationally. This inspired Zohn to co-founded Safe Roots Foundation, a grant making non profit organization and innovative teenage substance misuse prevention program for adolescents and sports coaches. The curriculum includes a mixture of sport-based activities that generate discussion about risks associated with harmful substance use with the goal of helping young people stay healthy, safe, and out of trouble. Coaches will build the skills and social assets of their players to avoid risky behaviors and will provide honest and accurate information to help young people make informed decisions.
What’s more, the mission to counter misleading information, allows Ethan to speak on his personal narrative and be a megaphone for those who may benefit from CBD and cannabis safe use and practice.
- Everything you want to know about Cannabis and CBD in a way you can understand
- The benefits of CBD and cannabis for cancer patients, survivors and those suffering from mental health and anxiety
- The intersection of Cannabis and sports
- Safe Cannabis
- The business of cannabis and starting a CBD / cannabis brand
- Cannabis Advocacy
The Reality of Antisemitism
As demonstrated by his charitable work, tzedakah and community involvement, Ethan believes that a better and healthier world can be achieved through living by Jewish values. His inspiration to help heal the world stems from being taught at an early age the importance of sports, community, a connection to the Jewish faith and the preservation of Israel.
If you are looking for a recognizable face to deliver a deeply-felt, meaningful lesson on values, tzedakah, character and personal strength to your participants, you should consider Ethan. With his remarkable sense of humor and his honesty, he offers a keynote that inspires any audience to answer life’s opportunities with strength and conviction of character.
Ethan has a deep connection to Judaism and can put it into terms that the Jewish community can relate to. He sprinkles in personal stories from Survivor, battling cancer, playing and coaching for The United States National Maccabi Team and has partnered with The Jewish National Fund, The Schusterman Foundation, Maccabi USA, JCC, Hillel, Chabad, Gift Of Life, Camp Simcha, Jew In The City, JewBelong, The Lost Tribe and many more.
- Living by Jewish values and Jewish Leadership
- Antisemitism and the importance of Jewish Advocacy
- Tikun Olam – Tzedakah and the importance of giving back
- Jewish Community
- Preservation of Israel
- Judaism and sports
As a result of attending this program, participants will learn:
To help you promote your event with Ethan, EVERGREEN has created promotional templates. In this folder, you will find resources for social media and press photos that you can use for your event.
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