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Valentino Achak Deng

Surviving Lost Boy of Sudan, Co-Founder of the VAD Foundation, & Author of "What is the What"

Surviving Lost Boy of Sudan, Co-Founder of the VAD Foundation, & Author of "What is the What"

Travels From Travels From:
Atlanta, GA, USA
Speaking Fee Speaking Fee:
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Valentino Achak Deng Biography

Valentino was born in southern Sudan (now South Sudan), in the village of Marial Bai. He was seven or eight years old when he fled the civil-war stricken Sudan in the late 1980s during the second Sudanese civil war, when his village was destroyed by murahaleen—the same type of militia that currently terrorizes the Darfur region of Sudan.

Deng spent nine years in Ethiopian and Kenyan refugee camps, where he worked for the UNHCR as a social advocate and reproductive health educator. He walked to Ethiopia with 30,000 children but was forced to flee again to a refugee camp in Kenya, one of only 10,000 children to survive the journey. In 2001, he resettled to Atlanta, GA, one of the last lost boys allowed out.

Deng has toured the United States speaking about his life in South Sudan, his experience as a refugee, and his collaboration with author Dave Eggers on What Is the What, the novelized version of Deng’s life story. As a leader in the South Sudanese diaspora, Deng advocates for the universal right to education.

In 2006, Deng and Eggers established the VAD Foundation to help rebuild South Sudanese communities by increasing educational access. In 2015, he was the Minister of Education for Northern Bahr el Ghazal and oversaw more than 800 state-run schools in addition. Now, in addition to running the VAD Foundation's secondary school (Marial Bai Secondary School), Valentino is the Vice President of Corporate Social Responsibility for Black Rhino (The Blackstone Group).

He is a highly requested speaker at schools and colleges, churches, civic originations, and religious institutions, sharing a message of character, perseverance, faith, and hope. He was also featured on CNN’s Inside Africa.

Valentino Achak Deng Speaking Topics

  • What Is the What: An Evening with Valentino Achak Deng

    With perspective and humor, Valentino Deng uses his extraordinary life to illuminate the lives, and the struggles, of millions. With storytelling grace, he takes you from the senseless tragedies of his early life (civil war in Sudan, refugee camps in Kenya) to his time in America to the hard-won triumphs of today (the opening of the Marial Bai secondary school). The powerful story that emerges is a testament to both the senselessness of war and the resilience of the human body and mind. Deng is a speaker of bottomless compassion, and of hope and integrity—a man whose unforgettable life has humbled and enlightened thousands around the world.

Valentino Achak Deng Videos

  • Valentino Achak Deng - "What is the What" - YouTube
    Valentino Achak Deng who, along with thousands of other children, the so-called Lost Boys, was forced to leave his village in Sudan as a young boy...
  • Hope and impediments | Valentino Achak Deng | TEDxBerlin ...
  • Keynote: Valentino Achak Deng & Dave Eggers (CGI 2011) - YouTube
    Valentino Achak Deng, Founder and Director, The Valentino Achak Deng Foundation, and Dave Eggers, Author; Co-founder, The Valentino Achak Deng...

Valentino Achak Deng Books

  • What Is the What: The Autobiography of Valentino Achak Deng
    What Is the What: The Autobiography of Valentino Achak Deng

FAQs on booking Valentino Achak Deng

  • How do I book Valentino Achak Deng to speak at my event?

    Our experienced booking agents have successfully helped clients around the world secure speakers like Valentino Achak Deng for speaking engagements, personal appearances, product endorsements, or corporate entertainment since 2002. Click the Check Availability button above and complete the form on this page to check availability for Valentino Achak Deng, or call our office at 1.800.698.2536 to discuss your upcoming event. One of our experienced agents will be happy to help you get speaking fee information and check availability for Valentino Achak Deng or any other speaker of your choice.
  • What are the speaker fees for Valentino Achak Deng

    Speaking fees for Valentino Achak Deng, or any other speakers and celebrities, are determined based on a number of factors and may change without notice. The estimated fees to book Valentino Achak Deng are for live events and for virtual events. For the most current speaking fee to hire Valentino Achak Deng, click the Check Availability button above and complete the form on this page, or call our office at 1.800.698.2536 to speak directly with an experienced booking agent.
  • What topics does Valentino Achak Deng speak about?

    Valentino Achak Deng is a keynote speaker and industry expert whose speaking topics include Education, Faith & Religion, Inspirational, Motivation, Personal Growth.
  • Where does Valentino Achak Deng travel from?

    Valentino Achak Deng generally travels from Atlanta, GA, USA, but can be booked for private corporate events, personal appearances, keynote speeches, or other performances. For more details, please contact an AAE Booking agent.
  • Who is Valentino Achak Deng’s agent?

    AAE Speakers Bureau has successfully booked keynote speakers like Valentino Achak Deng for clients worldwide since 2002. As a full-service speaker booking agency, we have access to virtually any speaker or celebrity in the world. Our agents are happy and able to submit an offer to the speaker or celebrity of your choice, letting you benefit from our reputation and long-standing relationships in the industry. Please click the Check Availability button above and complete the form on this page including the details of your event, or call our office at 1.800.698.2536, and one of our agents will assist you to book Valentino Achak Deng for your next private or corporate function.
  • What is a full-service speaker booking agency?

    AAE Speakers Bureau is a full-service speaker booking agency, meaning we can completely manage the speaker’s or celebrity’s engagement with your organization from the time of booking your speaker through the event’s completion. We provide all of the services you need to host Valentino Achak Deng or any other speaker of your choice, including offer negotiation, contractual assistance, accounting and billing, and event speaker travel and logistics services. When you book a speaker with us, we manage the process of hosting a speaker for you as an extension of your team. Our goal is to give our clients peace of mind and a best-in-class service experience when booking a speaker with us.
  • Why is AAE Speakers Bureau different from other booking agencies?

    If you’re looking for the best, unbiased speaker recommendations, paired with a top-notch customer service experience, you’re in the right place. At AAE Speakers Bureau, we exclusively represent the interests of our clients - professional organizations, companies, universities, and associations. We intentionally do not represent the speakers we feature or book. That is so we can present our clients with the broadest and best performing set of speaker options in the market today, and we can make these recommendations without any obligation to promote a specific speaker over another. This is why when our agents suggest a speaker for your event, you can be assured that they are of the highest quality with a history of proven success with our other clients.

Valentino Achak Deng is a keynote speaker and industry expert who speaks on a wide range of topics such as What Is the What: An Evening with Valentino Achak Deng. The estimated speaking fee range to book Valentino Achak Deng for your event is available upon request. Valentino Achak Deng generally travels from Atlanta, GA, USA and can be booked for (private) corporate events, personal appearances, keynote speeches, or other performances. Similar motivational celebrity speakers are Charlie Alejandro, Debra Peppers, Paul Carrillo, John Hodge and Montel Williams. Contact All American Speakers for ratings, reviews, videos and information on scheduling Valentino Achak Deng for an upcoming live or virtual event.

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