Melissa Stockwell Keynote Speaker

  • Retired U.S. Army 1st. Lt. - 1st female American soldier to lose a limb in active duty in Iraq - Purple Heart and Bronze Star recipient
  • 2016 Paralympic Bronze Medalist & World Champion Triathlete
  • Author of The Power of Choice

Melissa Stockwell's Biography

At first glance, Melissa Stockwell may appear to be the quintessential Mid-Western All-American girl, but she is far more. She is an American war hero who has triumphed over personal tragedy to achieve greatness, world champion status, and she has dedicated her life to chasing remarkable accomplishments while giving back to others, particularly those who face challenges similar to her own.

In 2002, Melissa graduated from the University of Colorado and was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in the United States Army. In March 2004, she deployed to Baghdad, Iraq. Just three weeks later, a blast from a roadside bomb struck Melissa’s Humvee causing the loss of her left leg above the knee. After enduring numerous infections and surgeries, Melissa was medically retired from the Army. She is the first female soldier to ever lose a limb in active combat and has been awarded both The Bronze Star Medal and the Purple Heart.

Following her accident, sport became the road to recovery for Melissa. In April of 2008, she became the first Iraqi War Veteran to qualify for the Beijing Paralympics. She competed in three swimming events and was honored by her fellow Team USA athletes to be selected to carry the American flag in the closing ceremony. After Beijing, Melissa turned to the sport of Paratriathlon and is now a three-time World Champion. She was named USA Triathlon’s female Paratriathlete of the Year for two consecutive years and was twice nominated for an ESPY award.

On September 11, 2016, at the Paralympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Melissa raced in honor of her fellow soldiers and their families who had given the ultimate sacrifice serving and protecting America. After a grueling race, the day ended on the podium, as the newly crowned Paralympic Bronze Medalist.

As a speaker, Melissa Stockwell has shared her remarkable story, and the inspiring insights she has uncovered along the way, to standing ovations across the country for Fortune 500 companies, military bases, professional organizations, charities, government events, and countless schools.

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Melissa Stockwell's Speaking Topics

  • The Power of Choice

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Videos of Melissa Stockwell

Inspirational Speaker Melissa Stockwell - Keynote - The Power of Choice
Inspirational Speaker Melissa Stockwell - Keynote - The Power of Choice
Fox Sports salutes Army Veteran & U.S. Paralympian Melissa Stockwell on Veterans Day | FOX SPORTS
Fox Sports salutes Army Veteran & U.S. Paralympian Melissa Stockwell on Veterans Day | FOX SPORTS
U.S. Army veteran Melissa Stockwell on her journey to Tokyo and what it means to serve on Team USA
U.S. Army veteran Melissa Stockwell on her journey to Tokyo and what it means to serve on Team USA
Choose Your Story | Melissa Stockwell | TEDxVail
Choose Your Story | Melissa Stockwell | TEDxVail

Articles, Media & Podcasts

Books by Melissa Stockwell

The Power of Choice

Comments & Testimonials

Nearly every ALA Convention attendee made it a point to share that your speech was the highlight of the entire week. All were inspired by your story and the courage and determination you have demonstrated as the life of Melissa 2.0 unfolds. Every Speaker for the remainder of the Convention referenced your Speech. Honestly, Melissa, folks simply couldn’t stop raving about you and P&G benefited by association. Personally, it was an absolute honor and pleasure to meet you. I had high expectations…..you exceeded mine as both a Speaker and an Individual. The quality (intellect, poise, humor) in which you conduct yourself is very impressive Melissa.
Procter & Gamble
Melissa, you forced us to take stock of how we view our own lives with your TEDxVail Talk, "Choose Your Story." We laughed when you flipped your leg completely around to show off your sweet new dance move. You stand on one leg with more courage and grace than many of us do on two. You moved hundreds to tears in the audience. Thanks, Melissa, for your powerful idea! You entice us all to choose life stories worth repeating
TEDx Vail
We were so happy to have Melissa speak at our Sales and Marketing Offsite. There was not a dry eye in the audience and she left us all feeling inspired, motivated and incredibly proud to have her on our team.
Chobani
I have had the chance to meet Melissa and hear her amazing story in person. In this book, Melissa shares insight on how she became a warrior and fought back to become the champion she is today. She is a great example of perseverance in the face of what appears to be insurmountable hurdles. Her love of country is strong and carries through her joining the military and representing Team USA in the Paralympic Games. A true champion in many ways.
Jackie Joyner Kersee

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