Juan Manuel Santos Keynote Speaker

  • Member of The Elders
  • 2016 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate
  • President of Colombia (2010-2014; 2014-2018)

Juan Manuel Santos's Biography

Juan Manuel Santos, former President of Colombia from 2010 to 2018, is celebrated globally for leading Colombia into an era of peace, equity, and development. He was pivotal in promoting the Sustainable Development Goals and co-founding the Pacific Alliance. For his relentless efforts to end Colombia’s half-century-long civil war, he received the Nobel Peace Prize in 2016, among other accolades. The former president’s insights on leadership and how he used them to change Colombia’s history make him a compelling speaker.

His leadership spans various pivotal roles in Colombian politics, including terms as the Minister of Foreign Trade, Finance, and Defense. In 2005, he founded the U Party, significantly altering Colombia’s political scene. Santos’s fervent environmental initiatives earned him recognition from leading global conservation entities.

Juan Manuel Santos graduated with honors from the Colombian Naval Academy in Cartagena and holds a Business and Economics degree from the University of Kansas (1969). He completed postgraduate studies at the London School of Economics (1973-1974), the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University, and the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University (1981), where he earned a Master of Public Administration as a Fulbright fellow. He was a Nieman Fellow at Harvard (1987-1988), and an Angelopoulos Global Public Leaders Fellow (2018-2019). He has received honorary doctorates from several universities, including the Sorbonne and the London School of Economics.

A prolific author, Santos has penned works shedding light on Colombia’s transformation and global leadership. The most recent book “An Outstanding Conversation” was written with Ingrid Betancourt, and “The Third Way”, written with British Prime Minister Tony Blair. Santos appeared twice on the list of the 100 most influential people in the world, as well as featured on the cover of the Times Magazine.

Juan is the current Chair of the Board of Compaz Foundation, which he founded to promote peace, environmental protection, and poverty reduction, primarily through grassroots leadership. He is also a member of The Elders, the Global Commission on Drug Policy, the International Crisis Group, and the Wildlife Conservation Society. He is a visiting professor at Oxford University, a member of the Rockefeller Foundation Board of Trustees, and a former Conservation International Arnhold Distinguished Fellow.

In the world of international discourse and keynote speaking, Juan Manuel Santos stands unparalleled. Drawing from his rich tapestry of experiences and leadership roles, he possesses the innate ability to captivate, educate, and inspire audiences. His profound insights into global affairs, leadership, and the transformative journey of Colombia under his helm make him a sought-after speaker. Beyond the narratives of governance and policy, Santos’s eloquence, charisma, and deep-rooted belief in unity and humanity resonate with listeners, making every speaking engagement not just an event but an experience that lingers in the minds of his audience.

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Videos of Juan Manuel Santos

Books by Juan Manuel Santos

The Battle for Peace
The Battle Against Poverty

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