Speakers in the news 10th November

Raleigh Addington
Raleigh Addington
editor at Chartwell Speakers

Chartwell Speakers have been featuring in the news this week. See our ‘Top Five’’ picks below. If you are interested in booking…



  • Fawaz Gerges is a leading authority on the geopolitical and security dynamics of the Middle East and their impact on the global economy. He is a Professor of international relations at the London School of Economics and Political Science where he holds the Emirates Chair in Contemporary Middle Eastern Studies. 
  • Lebanese Prime Minister Saad al-Hariri resigned from his post on Saturday during a trip to Saudi Arabia in a surprise move that plunged Lebanon into uncertainty amid heightened regional tensions. Speaking to CBS News, Fawaz Gerges suggested that tensions could turn violent: “There is a real danger that the tensions between the Hariri-dominated faction and Hezbollah-dominated faction could easily escalate into an armed confrontation”.
  • In light of Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s targeting of corrupt ministers as part of a new anti-corruption campaign, Fawaz Gerges told CNN the world was witnessing the “birth of a new order in Saudi Arabia.” He continued, “everything which has been happening in the past year or so in Saudi Arabia tells me that Mohammed bin Salman, is putting his ideas into practice and cracking down not only on opposition figures but trying to prevent, as he said a few days ago, the bleeding of the economy and the migration of resources from Saudi Arabia into other countries.”


  • Lewis Pugh is one of the world’s leading inspirational and leadership speakers and an authority on how to achieve the “impossible”. He was the first person to complete a long distance swim in every ocean of the world. He was the first to undertake a swim across the icy waters of the North Pole and the first to swim across a glacial lake on Mt Everest. In a career spanning 27 years the maritime lawyer has pioneered more swims around famous landmarks than any other swimmer in history.
  • The former lawyer turned endurance swimmer finished a swim in the Antarctic waters off the coast of King Edward Cover near Grytviken, South Georgia, on Tuesday. Beginning at approximately 2 p.m. EST, Pugh swam in nothing but a Speedo through the icy waters. It took him 19 minutes to swim one kilometer, through waters that averaged roughly two degrees Celsius. His swim comes as the U.K. government plans to review protections for the 193,000 square miles of water the South Sandwich Islands. Currently, the region is a sustainable use marine protected area, which allows some fishing. But beginning later this month, the government will consider fully protecting the region by outlawing all fishing.


  • Mo Gawdat is the Chief Business Officer for X, previously Google X, and is a leading global expert in technology and innovation with the world’s most advanced organisation for breakthrough technology.
  • Talking on Brexit this week, Mo said remainers need to stop worrying and engage in making Britain’s future better.
    Appearing on Sky News, Mr Gawdat said: “ was a surprise for many. It was a bit unexpected. It wasn’t what people wanted life to be,  but thinking about it now can make you happy or unhappy – you decide to think about it by sitting down and complaining that this is not how I want life to be,  or you can decide to think about it saying it is what life is. What can I do today to engage and hopefully make it a better future?”


  • Jimmy Wales is the Internet entrepreneur best known for founding, as well as other wiki-related organisations, including the charitable organisation Wikimedia Foundation, and the for-profit company Wikia Inc., which operates
  • In light of the interminable rise of fake news, Jimmy wrote an article for The Telegraph this week to announce the launch of his new nline news service ‘Wikitribune’, and to argue that there is no alternative to facts . Jimmy wrote, ”since founding Wikipedia, the fifth-largest website in the world, I have wanted to bring its fact-based, fact-checking mentality to the world of news. This November I am launching a small, community-driven online news service called Wikitribune to do just that”.


  • Toomas Hendrik Ilves served as President of Estonia from 2006 to 2016. In this post, he was key in driving the initiatives in e-government and cyber security for which the country has been acknowledged as a world-leader.
  • ITPRO interviewed Toomas this week on the digital roots of Estonia this week. Explaining why Estonia choose to go digital in the first place, Ilves recounts how in 1938 Estonia and its northern neighbour Finland, which he says shares a common culture and fairly similar language to his own country, had the same GDP per capita. “When we established independence [from the Soviet Union] in 1991, there was a 13 fold difference between the two countries,” he says. “Finland was 13 times richer per person than we were. This certainly added a lot to the desire to do something big. Ilves believes the power relationships that existed in the past, based on industrial might and physical size, are changing and if the European Union wishes to compete in the world it needs to take the idea of digitisation more seriously – something Estonia is currently pushing during its presidency of the EU.


If you wish to book any of these speakers please contact us here.