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Paul de Gelder

Paul de Gelder

Paul de Gelder is an incredible inspiration. Paul has led a colourful life, one filled with adventure, hard work, enthusiasm and determination. Surviving a shark attack in 2009, Paul took his life to a whole new level.

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Testimonials for Paul de Gelder

His strength and will, only just out shine his humour and light heartedness, qualities that undoubtedly carried him through his darkest times. The impact and lasting impression he has made upon my groups and me personally is remarkable and I am blessed to call him friend.

Meredith Julliard, Customer Co-ordinator, Freshstart Australia


Paul’s presentation was definitely the highlight of our conference. He spoke very well and the feedback I have from the staff was fantastic, they were very inspired and touched by his story. Some of the staff wouldn’t let him leave as they had so many questions. He did a fantastic job and I only hope he continues to share his story.

Lauren Taylor, EA to Acting Director Aligned Channels Business Development, AMP Limited


I wish to thank you for your attendance at today’s successful 2011 Salvation Army breakfast. Your speech was inspirational and motivating and I believe contributed to the record number of attendees. Your story is inspirational and it is a reminder to al that nothing is insurmountable; congratulations on your achievements to date, I’m sure you’ll continue to achieve success.

Louise Duff, Managing Director, Brilliant Logic Pty Ltd

Excellent presentation & very down to earth. Paul kept the audience attention throughout – not an easy task. The detail of the operation performed was great. His motivation is amazing, I went straight home and down loaded his book. Lots of great feedback from the audience-they all enjoyed Paul’s presentation

Shaune Gillespie, CEO, Calvary John James Hospital


Paul de Gelder Travels from NSW
Fee Range: :$5001 to $10000

Paul de Gelder's Biography

From rebel, drug dealer and strip club worker to adventurer, soldier, fitness enthusiast, Navy diver, shark attack survivor, top motivational speaker and mentor to schoolkids across Australia, Paul de Gelder is an exceptional young man. He is now determined to carve out the best future for himself he could possibly imagine.


Improvise - Adapt – Overcome!

These three words - a mantra Paul learnt in the Australian Army as a young Paratrooper - resonated with him the first time he heard them.


Paul chased adventure wherever he could find it, from his wild ride as a hoodlum teen and his life on the edge, to hauling his way up to the elite echelons of Australia's defence forces.

But trouble hunted him down in the form of a brutal shark in February 2009. Paul lost two limbs, and his career as a daredevil Navy Clearance Diver was flung into jeopardy.


Drawing on everything his eventful life had taught him, Paul left nothing to chance in his recovery. He fought through excruciating pain, smashing challenge after challenge, and amazing the medical staff with his will to succeed. His inspiring story takes 'never say die' to a whole new level.


In the five years since the shark attack, Paul's life has changed in every aspect. Having left full time Navy Service in August 2012, after continuing to instruct Navy Divers for a further 3.5 years, Paul has travelled the world as a top motivational speaker, passionate environmentalist, adventurer and mentor to school kids.


He has spoken at venues all around the world, from the United Nations in New York and the US Navy in San Diego, to Anzac Day military celebrations in front of thousands, and keynotes for multimillion dollar corporations and charity organizations around Australia and New Zealand.