I help people make bold moves in their lives, careers, organizations, and community.
In what feels like another life, I was a very conservative Baptist pastor living in the Midwest with my wife and three kids. I was godly, but I was gay. Being gay wasn’t an option in that world. So, in an effort to keep my secret and get myself fixed I resigned my church and spent nearly 3 years in Ex-gay or conversion therapy. I went to individual and group counseling sessions, attended retreats, read the books, went to conferences, listened to the speakers, fought evil spirits with the counselor, and cried and prayed like never before in my life. As you can see, it didn’t work.
I now know I was focused on pursuing solutions for a problem that didn’t exist. I use those experiences to help individuals and organizations switch from solution building to problem solving in areas like Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, LGBTQ Equality, Personal Development, Professional Development, and more.
Today I am happily married to my husband of 15 years. I share my colorful story with audiences everywhere to encourage them to live authentically not controlled by fear and shame.
I know what it is like to make bold moves. I help people make bold moves in their life, career, organization or community. Contact me and let’s get started today!
Would you like to be the first to know when Joel Speaks Out? I promise not to bombard you with emails and texts. However, I will send you a virtual hug once in a while in the form of a personal note, funny gif, or news I’ll share with you first.
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Joel was a great speaker for our COVID Zoom meeting! We were sharing our inspirational tee shirts before the meeting began when Joel excused himself and reappeared with his “Conversion Therapy Dropout” shirt! Joel was amazing in his presentation of a heart-wrenching subject. All attendees appreciated his sharing.
Joel spoke at our first annual Diversity and Inclusion week as part of Black & Veatch’s Pride ERG National Coming Out Day Event. Our Professionals really enjoyed Joel’s story and honesty about his coming out as a gay man. Joel was an open book and encouraged questions from our professionals. I would recommend Joel for any company speaking engagement about showing up authentically and how important that is to folx in the workplace.
Joel and David were keynote speakers at a national student conference for students passionate about peace in faith-based schools. Many students resonated with Joel’s presentation, which included a vulnerable sharing of his own journey, and left feeling “seen” and encouraged in their own life paths. Joel and David also made themselves available for informal conversations with students and made sure to adapt their presentation to our particular audience. Joel is not your average motivational speaker—he shows up with his full humanity and shares generously with everyone involved, leaving us all better for having met him.
Kansas City, MO, United States