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For Immediate Release
Contact: Andrea DiMickele
(480) 968-2552


National Speakers Association Announces  2008 CPAE Speaker Hall of Fame Inductees  

(TEMPE, Ariz.- August 19, 2008)  The National Speakers Association (NSA), the leading organization for professional speakers, inducted six professional speakers into the CPAE Speaker Hall of Fame® at the 2008 NSA Convention in New York, N.Y.
Established in 1977, the Council of Peers Award for Excellence (CPAE) is a lifetime award for speaking excellence and professionalism given to speakers who have been evaluated by their peers and judged to have mastered seven categories: material, style, experience, delivery, image, professionalism and communication.  The award is not based on celebrity status, number of speeches, amount of income or involvement in NSA.
The 2008 inductees are: Jeff Blackman, CSP, CPAE, of Glenview, Ill.; LeAnn Thieman, CSP, CPAE, of Ft. Collins, Colo.; Shep Hyken, CSP, CPAE, of St. Louis, Mo.; Giovanni Livera, CPAE, of Winter Springs, Fla.; and Jeffrey Gitomer, CSP, CPAE, of Charlotte, N.C. Additionally, Joe Larson, CSP, CPAE, of Scottsdale, Ariz., was inducted as an honorary member of the CPAE Speaker Hall of Fame.
Jeff Blackman, CSP, CPAE is a speaker, author, coach, broadcaster and lawyer.  His clients call him a "business-growth specialist."  Blackman helped one financial services client generate $230 million from referrals, in 23 months!  For over two decades, his positive and profit-producing messages for Fortune 500 companies, closely-held businesses and associations, have helped his clients drive relationships, results and revenue.  And every strategy is value-driven, integrity based and non-manipulative.  Blackman's best selling books, audios and videos include: Stop Whining! Start Selling!, Peak Your Profits®, RESULT$, Opportunity $elling®, Carpe A.M. · Carpe P.M., Profitable Customer Service and How to Set and Really Achieve Your Goals.  He is a happy husband, devoted father, avid softball player and crazy Chicago Cubs fan!  Blackman helps you Create Profits Through People!®
LeAnn Thieman, CSP, CPAE is a nationally acclaimed professional speaker, author and nurse who was "accidentally" caught up in the Vietnam Orphan Airlift in 1975 when she helped rescue 300 children as Saigon was falling to the Communists.  She is a renowned motivational speaker who shares life-changing lessons learned from her Airlift experience.  Thieman inspires audiences to balance their lives, truly live their priorities and make a difference in the world.  She is the co-author of ten Chicken Soup for the Soul books, including Chicken Soup for the Nurse's Soul.  With 30 years of nursing experience, she speaks full time inspiring and honoring her colleagues during these challenging times in healthcare, giving them the tools to care for themselves as they care for others. Thieman is the first woman from the state of Colorado to be inducted into the Speaker Hall of Fame.
Shep Hyken, CSP, CPAE, is a speaker and author who works with clients who want to build loyal relationships with their customers and employees.  His business articles have been read in hundreds of publications, and he is the author of Moments of Magic™ and The Loyal Customer.  His next book, The Cult of the Customer, published by John Wiley & Sons will be released in March 2009.  In 1983 Hyken founded Shepard Presentations and has since worked with hundreds of companies and associations.  Some of his clients include American Airlines, Anheuser-Busch, AT&T; and American Express - and that's just a few of the A's!  Hyken is married to Cindy and is the proud father of Brian, Alex and Casey.  When not speaking or with his family, he is playing hockey, golf or practicing magic tricks.   
Giovanni Livera, CPAE, is a performer and a presenter, enthusiast and entertainer, magician and motivator. Livera's unparalleled ability to motivate and transform people and organizations has made him one of the most sought-after motivational performers in America, and his spectacular message has electrified over half of the country's Fortune 500 companies. Livera has authored three books, including his most recent work, Live A Thousand Years, Have the Time of Your Life. He is also only one of six people in history to have received the coveted Gold Cups Award by the International Brotherhood of Magicians. Livera has been creating meaningful experiences for audiences of all sizes for more than two decades.  He invites you to join the experience at
Jeffrey Gitomer, CSP, CPAE presents at public and corporate seminars, runs annual sales meetings, and conducts live and Internet training programs on selling, customer loyalty and personal development.  His clients include Coca-Cola, BMW, Hilton, Time Warner Cable, Wells Fargo Bank, the New York Post and hundreds of others. Gitomer is the host and commentator of the monthly sales resource Selling Power Live, and has a syndicated column Sales Moves, that appears in scores of business journals and newspapers.  His Web sites, and, receive more than 100,000 hits per week from readers and seminar attendees, and his weekly e-zine, Sales Caffeine, is distributed to over 350,000 subscribers.  All of Gitomer's books have been number one best sellers on Amazon and The Sales Bible, The Little Red Book of Selling, The Little Black Book of Connections and The Little Gold Book of YES! are New York Times best sellers.
NSA's honorary CPAE inductee, Joe Larson, CSP, CPAE, was the early king of product sales.  He spoke outside his industry, but within his industry of industrial and food service brushes.  With his wit, charm, and what some call "corny" humor, Larson entertained and inspired audiences in such a way that, in subsequent days, the orders just flooded in.  
The National Speakers Association (NSA) is the leading organization for professional speakers. NSA's thousands of members include experts in a variety of industries and disciplines, who reach audiences as trainers, educators, humorists, motivators, consultants, authors and more.  Since 1973, NSA has provided resources and education designed to advance the skills, integrity and value of its members and the speaking profession. Visit NSA's Web site at