Scott Stoll logo world traveler. A bicycle wheel and the globe symbolizes Scott's journey around the world on a bicycle.
TEDx Happy Hour Group stands in the spotlight on stage
TEDx Happy Hour Group with Scott Stoll (holding the letter D). A great night of local talent.

Motivational Speaker

Important update: Scott is currently living in the Bay Area California, but he is also available anywhere in the world upon request either in real life or virtually. In addition to his popular slideshow, Scott can lead a Dream Workshop (kids and/or adults) or the Make-A-Book project (elementary schools). Contact us so we can help you prepare the perfect event.

Scott Stoll Headshot Profile Picture

My goal is to spark the spirit of adventure in the audience so that everyone feels as if they have taken the first step on their next adventure before they even leave the room. ~

Spirit of Adventure Award

Scott is the recipient of the Spirit of Adventure Award for outstanding enthusiasm and curiosity while traveling. Presented by the Los Angeles Council of Hostelling International.

Scott Stoll spent 4 years cycling around the world on a quest for happiness and the meaning of life. He has shared his inspiring story of self-discovery with tens of thousands of students and professionals around the globe. He enjoys teaching people how to dream big. As he likes to ask, “If you could do anything, what would you do?”

His show features an entertaining and inspirational slideshow about his quest, including many examples of the trials and the triumphs of “falling uphill”. It is a unique educational experience, which is also a metaphor for everyone’s journey towards fulfilling their own dream, whether that be an adventurer, artist, scientist, business person or cupcake baker. His presentation is jam-packed with entertaining adventures and explores inspirational and enlightening themes like:

  • If you could do anything, what would you do?
  • How to create dreams and turn them into reality.
  • Embracing your fears and turning adversity into an ally (falling uphill)
  • Cultural awareness and discovering what it means to be human
  • Using your emotional fuel to turn dreams into reality
  • Affirming that we are all heroes in the adventure of life
  • Rediscovering the “secret” to happiness and the meaning of life
  • Enjoying both the journey and the destination
  • And, don’t forget, it is full of adventure, like: swimming across a river full of crocodiles, cycling to Mt. Everest Base Camp, almost dying of dehydration, and much more…

Scott doesn’t teach a magic formula to live your life, but demonstrates, by example, how living life — including doubt, fear and mistakes — is the magic. By the end of his presentation, participants will have not only dreamed a dream but taken an actual step on their own journey.


The world needs people like Mr. Stoll to show us what is possible if you try. ~

I’m proud to have a constituent who dedicated 4 years of his life to cycling the world. You have a wonderful story to share with the world. And I am pleased that you continue to advocate on behalf of an issue you care deeply about. ~ Congressman Sensenbrenner

For one brief hour, through Scott’s slides and stories, our students traveled the world and recognized their dreams can come true. Perhaps someday our school will host another traveler sharing his or her tales. But maybe this traveler will be a former student inspired by hearing Scott speak. ~ (Read the whole letter of commendation.)

Thank you for your inspiring keynote last evening at our annual recognition dinner for our 2013 Eagle Scouts and Silver Beaver recipients. Your keynote was very well balanced with your own incredible story of discovery and of inspiration and motivation to all in attendance on not just finding happiness but also in discovering the massive amount of potential each of us holds to make a positive difference in our community and world. Keep pedaling! ~

The success of Scott’s presentation is simply the opportunity for people to connect with a real person with a true story of hope and inspiration. ~

One thousand percent great! ~

More testimonials


Scott Stoll being interviewed at super week downer classic
Scott Stoll being interviewed on stage at the Super Week Downer Classic leg. At the time, it was the biggest bicycle race in the world coinciding with the Tour de France.
Map of bicycle ride around the world, slideshow and books on display at the Central Indiana Bicycling Association (CIBA) Indianapolis Public Library Foundation talk with Scott Stoll
A speaking event with the Central Indiana Bicycling Association (CIBA) and the Indianapolis Public Library Foundation
Vamos Chicas Paraguay Peace Corp-12
The Peace Corps girls club in Paraguay, Vamos Chicas, talking to the author Scott Stoll on Skype.

Scott Stoll is available for lectures and slideshows across the globe to schools, businesses and organizations. Talks range from 30–90 minutes with up to 120 slides (Scott has over 6000 photos to choose from) including a question and answer period and book signing, and potential workshops or classroom visits.

  • For students: Scott’s show is titled “If you could do anything, what would you do?” which focuses on creating dreams and turning them into reality. The presentation is similar to the one for general audiences but it is customized for different age groups, and students are encouraged to take the first step of their journey with classroom activities or a “homeplay” assignment, like illustrating their dream or creating a bucket list.
  • For professional audiences who are already on the path towards their dream, Scott has a show titled “Life is Like Riding a Bicycle,” which focuses on owning your dream, overcoming adversity and enjoying the journey. This show deemphasizes the trip in favor of showcasing the top lessons learned while cycling around the world, with examples and guides on how to overcome adversity and actualize your dream and create a sense of fulfillment.
  • Customized presentations: Since each organization has unique goals, please don’t hesitate to contact us to discuss how we can create the ideal presentation for your group. If you are a community leader or event organizer and interested in championing this show, a great place to start is to download the Promotional Flier (PDF) and distribute this to your group members.
  • Virtual visits: Scott is also available to meet with your audience virtually. He can do a slide show, frequently asked questions, and help organize a follow-up activity. More info about virtual visits here.

Let’s talk

Every event is a little bit different. Please contact me to discuss how to make my talk a perfect fit.

A video of how Scott likes to begin a talk at elementary schools

Scott loves to surprise students by riding his bicycle into the gym. He thinks he may own the world record for riding a bicycle inside schools.
Scotts tent in school library
Scott pitched his tent in the school library for the kids to explore. He also set up his stove (without the fuel), cookware and water filter, and sleeping bag and mattress.
Elementary students looking the map of Scott's adventures
Elementary students looking at the map of Scott’s adventures.

Speaking package

After doing hundreds of talks, Scott has learned how to help the organizers prepare for a great event.

  • Books: Scott has five books so people can re-imagine the journey, and help students of all ages actualize some of the life lessons. (Books and bookmarks can also be part of a raffle prize, trivia contest or swag bag.)
  • Bike and props: Scott can also bring the bicycle that went around the world or even the tent as well as the map display.
  • Promotional Package. Along with my speaking, you get my media kit and dedication to marketing the event. For example, one bookstore earned $2500 from one book signing by promoting the event in the local media. Scott’s story has been featured in hundreds of places like the New York Times, see Scott’s media appearances. This creates an opportunity to piggyback your organization’s values with a media-friendly story. And Scott’s video about cycling around the world is a great way to warm up your audience.
  • Handouts. To answer the most common questions, Scott has created multiple resources to maximize your audience’s experience, including handouts with an introduction to the show, biography, infographics, and random facts sheet (how many flat tires did you get).
  • Classroom resources. These classroom resources help prep kids before Scott’s talk, and to answer some of the most common questions. And, it has a lot of follow-up exercises designed to motivate kids to begin living their own amazing life, like a travel planner and the Dream Workshop.
  • Follow-up: Scott is available to answer questions after the show or via email or Skype. And, schools may wish to follow Scott’s adventures abroad.

Handout examples

Here are some examples of handouts for both adults and kids. I have a lot more we can choose from. In fact, I have a whole workbook that teaches people how to dream and a lot more worksheets here.

The Hero's Journey
The hero’s journey infographic. A metaphor for everyone’s journey through life and quest to create meaning and fulfillment. Based on Joseph Campbell’s “The Hero With A Thousand Faces” and Scott’s experience from his 4-year journey around the world on a bicycle.
How to fall uphill worksheets
How to fall uphill worksheets in black and white and color. Identify your dream and what step you are on. Good for kids and adults.
Scott on stage with his bicycle in front of a crowd of children.
Scott speaking to the Butler Middle School assembly about his bicycle ride around the world and how to turn dreams into reality. The “Magic Time Capsule” exercise encouraged students to write down a list of dreams, imagine them coming true, and then saving the list to see what happens 1, 5, 10 or 20 years from now.

Let’s talk

Every event is a little bit different. Please contact me to discuss how to make my talk a perfect fit.

Speaking Venues

Scott Stoll's keynote speech at the Boy Scouts of America
Scott Stoll’s keynote speech at the Boy Scouts of America

A small but representative list of several hundred engagements in a dozen countries.

Keynote Speaker
  • Cincinnati TEDx live auditions.
  • Keynote speech to the Eagle Scout graduates. Boy Scouts of America. San Jose, CA.
  • NorCal Peace Corps Association annual meeting.
  • Central Indiana Bicycling Association and the friends of the library. More info in this great newspaper article.
  • The San Diego Council of Hostelling International Annual Members Meeting as well as San Francisco and Los Angeles annual meetings.
  • And other annual corporate events, such as: the Portable Sanitation Association International.
  • Cultural Ambassador to Argentina with the US Department of State, including dozens of venues.
Non-Profit Organizations
Universities to Elementary Schools to Day Care
  • Waukesha County Technical College. Spring Spotlight Professional Development.
  • Carroll University. Bike Week.
  • The University of California Santa Barbara. “Break out of your cultural box — Travel the world!” Download the PDF flyer for this event.
  • The STEM Academy, Butler Middle School, Whitnall Middle School, Whitefish Bay Middle School, Frank Lloyd Wright Intermediate School, Woodside Elementary, Lincoln Elementary, and dozens more.
  • The Goddard School, Early Childhood Preschool
  • A handful of schools and other small venues around the world, including Africa where there was no actual school building.
  • Last October I had the great opportunity to share my story with the inmates at Fox Lake Correctional Facilities. Read the story.
  • Retirement and Elderly Care Communities.
  • Guest speaker at The Lonely Planet book launch for “By the seat of my pants”. (I have a co-starring role in one story.)
  • Misc. events such as a judge for the Literary Council of Greater Waukesha 19th Annual Spelling Bee, and lead bicycle escort for Hank Aaron State Trail 5k Run/Walk and the Vibha 5K Run/Walk.
  • A generous amount of mini-talks, book signings and book clubs.
  • And experience as a lifetime student/teacher of self-improvement, such as: teaching chess to elementary students, coaching leadership programs, continuing education, etc.
Broadcast interviews

Let’s talk

Every event is a little bit different. Please contact me to discuss how to make my talk a perfect fit.

Scott on stage pointing to a before-and-after picture of himself from his trip around the world on a bicycle.
Another picture from one of Scott’s motivational talks at a school. Here he is pointing to a before-and-after picture of himself from his bike ride around the world. He likes to say, “The change on the inside was even bigger!”

Featured Testimonials

letter of commendation kindergartener
A letter of commendation from a kindergartener with some creative spelling.
Dear Scout,
I love your terp a rand the word.
~ Elisia, Kindergartener.

Dear Scout, I love your terp a rand the word. ~

For one brief hour, through Scott’s slides and stories, our students traveled the world and recognized their dreams can come true. Perhaps someday our school will host another traveler sharing his or her tales. But maybe this traveler will be a former student inspired by hearing Scott speak. (Read the whole letter of commendation.)

While I expected your presentation would be interesting, I wasn’t sure how it would be handled by a group of 45 boys, Grades 1-5 (along with siblings, some a bit younger). The answer was found not only by their attentiveness during the presentation but all their questions afterward. In addition, my own sons finished your books the next day, and told me that “all the Scouts were talking about it” at school! (Please read the descriptive letter of commendation.)

Scott has an incredible number of exciting and challenging experiences to be able to share with his audiences. He does a great job of using these experiences as motivational tools for others. Scott will prove a worthwhile message to your group. In addition to hearing his message of dreaming, people will also truly enjoy hearing his story. Please consider Scott as a speaker for your event. (Read the whole letter of commendation.)

His presentation was well-received by students and staff alike. (Read the whole letter of commendation.)

I’m proud to have a constituent who dedicated 4 years of his life to cycling the world. You have a wonderful story to share with the world. And I am pleased that you continue to advocate on behalf of an issue you care deeply about.

That was AWESOME! It is an experience that will last the kids a lifetime. ~

Even more testimonials

Thank you letters Springer School
I did a talk at Springer School and Center a few weeks ago (2019-10) and today the thank-you notes flooded in. I wasn’t expecting any at all AND it totally shattered my record. I’m going to read only one per day and savor each and every one. Thanks!!!

I had the pleasure to hear Scott’s story at a public library in Indianapolis sometime last year. At that moment, I remember thinking “Wow, what an incredible way to travel and see the world” At some point in that presentation, I think I subconsciously decided that I would embark on some sort of bicycle journey during my life. This past August, I did a trip from Montana to Oregon and now I prepare for a trip in Europe. I have a one-way ticket to Rotterdam, Netherlands dated for July 6th! Excited beyond belief for this time ahead. Thanks for sharing your story as it has had a special effect on me. ~

Scott brings the world to you. ~

Thank you again for sharing your story with our staff. I think your message is a universal one and believe that our staff were very engaged and inspired by your discoveries (of self and the world!). ~

After hearing your story I called my husband and said, “We need to do something with our lives. We are not living our dreams!” Again, thank you for sharing your story. It really struck something in me and when you said that our dreams are probably right on the other side of our fears. ~

Thank you, Scott, for presenting and sharing your inspirational stories at our Spring Spotlight. We are all amazed at your journey and love the happy ending the brought you here. May all your adventures be memorable and enlightening. Thank you for making our day of professional development and personal improvement a great success! ~

Scott’s rates are very reasonable. ~

The staff and kids thought you were fantastic, funny and amazing!!! You are definitely in your niche!!! ~

You helped us to learn to dream BIG! ~

I just finished listening to the show today – thanks so much for joining us! Your story is so inspiring, and your style is so humble and down-to-earth! I’m sure we’ll continue to hear good feedback from listeners. Until next time, happy trails! ~

Thank you for coming to speak with us. Your story and continual journey is an inspiring one, but also a reminder of reality. The internal struggles remain, and surface from time to time, but knowing how to process and learn from the struggles creates the newest chapter of each person’s story. ~

As someone whose travels reflect our values of intercultural understanding, and because your slideshows were so well received at HI member events, we would be honoured to have you join our celebration as a member of an Honorary Committee for the Hostelling International Anniversary Year. ~

Thank you for coming to speak at our Annual Meeting. Your story sparked so much interest that we had to turn away at least forty people! Those that did see your presentation were very moved, and several commented that they wished you had more time with us. Congratulations on completing an amazing journey, and for inspiring others to realize their dreams. ~

I think a lot of companies or groups or schools would pay big money for you to share life experiences and techniques for dealing with setbacks and challenges you faced while cycling around the world. I hate to say it, but I really feel you need to do this, not for the money, look at it more as your obligation. The world needs people like yourself to show us what is possible if you try. ~

Thank you for taking the time to call in to Around the World Radio! You were fabulous on the air! Please keep us posted on your travels and the progression of your book. ~

The most successful author we’ve had in 17 years. ~

Dear Mr. Scott Stoll, When you came to [our school] your stories about your traveling adventures made me think about biking around the world too. I really love to go to all of the states and countries. I always want to become a traveler too. I can imagine me traveling and meeting new people and talking in a different language. Thank you. ~

Thanks for the link to your recent interview on WPR. I listened to both programs and again, I am amazed at the wonderful information you had both about your journey, but also about the work you do with the schools in writing your books. You are really talented. We are really looking forward to your visit with us. ~

I was so inspired by you that I talked to my boss — something I would never have done — I can’t believe he agreed to give me a sabbatical so that I can volunteer in Thailand. I’m leaving ASAP ~

English is not my native language, but your speech I could understand very well. I liked your sense of humor, you sounded so natural! It was amazing to me to listen to somebody, who took 5000 pictures in 56 countries & 6 continents & was sharing the best of them with us! I’m from Russia. I like to travel, so yesterday with the help of your slides I could enjoy the beauty of the world. To me, you are a hero! ~

You brought tears to my eyes. ~

You’re an inspiration. ~

I’d love to have the same adventures. You’re only young once. ~

Congratulations on creating the JOY in life in each moment. Thank you for sharing your story. Hopefully, it will inspire me to follow my dreams. ~

Dear Scott, I just wanted to tip my hat to you for having the guts to follow your dream. Wow, what an amazing story. I spent a lot of time looking at the pictures on your website and reading your descriptions and sample chapters and was truly inspired. The photo that struck me the most was not some exotic locale, but your before and after shot. The transformation spoke volumes. You looked so tan, fit and happy in the after shot that I could hardly see that you were the same person. The physical change was less impressive to me than what appeared to be the psychological change [meeting you in person]. ~ .

I share your passion. Well done! You can be a guide for me any day. ~

Thanks so much for speaking at our annual meeting! Over 150 guests came just to see you! and your fabulous slides! ~

Thank you for the inspiration. Good luck with your next adventure. ~

Scott—Amazing, inspiring and enjoyable presentation. ~

I really enjoyed your talk! Especially the simplicity and honesty. ~

Thanks for sharing your dream! ~

Thank you for your visit to our school. Rohan and I enjoyed your presentation and felt very inspired by it. We are reading your book and loving it! I am so glad that your visit to HSCL worked out before Rohan moves on to middle school. ~

And many more…

Let’s talk

Every event is a little bit different. Please contact me to discuss how to make my talk a perfect fit.