Patrick Reynolds is a grandson of the tobacco company founder, R.J. Reynolds, but the family's brands, Camel and Winston, killed his father and eldest brother.
This nationally known smokefree advocate is a popular motivational speaker at schools, hospitals and colleges around the nation.
Hospital Marketing Directors frequently sponsor his talks, in part because press coverage of his appearances is strong and positive. This acclaimed program builds goodwill for sponsors, and is an excellent outreach for hospitals. See what clients are saying.
Why not make one brief call to a likely local sponsor? Check out our Five Minute Plan with talking points.
a little over an hour, Reynolds went from being just another
anti-tobacco speaker to something special," commented
a front page story in one local paper. View recent news coverage.
"After his opening story about his own father's absence, and the sadness and anger he felt as a youth because of it, he asked the students, 'How many of you do not have your biological fathers living at home with you?' When over 50% of the audience slowly raised their hands, our students seemed to realize that these shared emotions cross all economic and social borders -- and a bond was formed.
"After that, the students listened quietly and respectfully, and I could see real interest in their faces, as they related to his overheads and the moving stories he told, so very effectively and skillfully."
Click for more feedback from recent clients, from teachers, hospitals, health departments and college faculty.
An outline of Patrick Reynolds' talk for youth follows below.
For details about his talks for adults, please scroll down this page or click below.
Live or in the new bestselling educational video of his live talk,
this program empowers youth to stay tobacco and drug free.
Patrick Reynolds —
Emphasizes the addictiveness of nicotine
Opens students' eyes to how tobacco ads manipulate our youth
Creates a new awareness of smoking by stars in TV and films
Motivates teens to resist peer pressure to smoke
Gives students a formula for saying no, with clear examples
Empowers audiences to make more responsible choices about drugs and alcohol
Offers an initiation into life, rooted in ancient traditions. "The core message of my brief initiation today is this," Mr. Reynolds says, "first, to gently open your eyes to the reality that there's bad in the world — and that life brings everyone some painful moments and obstacles. It's by staying with whatever difficulty life throws at us that we heal, and solve our problems — not by running away. But many adults escape their pain with cigarettes, food, alcohol, drugs, TV, or even work. A lot of teens use music. Instead, when problems arise, don't alter you mood by running away to these. Stay with your problem, and talk to others about it — a trusted teacher, your parents, the school counselor, your friends. Stay with the problem, and talk to someone. You're initiated now — and a little closer to the world of adults."
Includes motivation on making ethical choices, positive thinking, saying no
A recurring theme: stressing the need to talk about problems to another person, and not isolate
The touching and powerful story of Sean Marsee, a young track star who died at 19 from chewing tobacco, illustrated with heartrending before and after overheads.
overheads which make fun of Joe Camel, in a hospital bed, and the
real Malboro Country: smokers puffing — and coughing —
outside an office building door.
Restoring students' faith in the future In this age of terrorism, student worry about the future has become more widespread. This five minute section near the end of Mr. Reynolds' talk empowers youth to deal more effectively with their doubts and fears about the future, and helps to restore their faith in the coming years. This gives students a tangible reason to hold on to their health. Mr. Reynolds motivates students to 1) Talk about their worries and fears to another person, 2) Affirm the positive, with real-life examples given, 3) Reevaluate: what is real wealth, anyway? 4) to "Catch my faith, my rock solid faith in the future." He concludes, "So stay tobacco, drug and alcohol free, for the wondrous, amazing years ahead. Don't smoke, don't drink and don't use drugs — because you'll need your health, every precious bit of it, in the incredible future that's coming." To preview this section, see Video or Audio Clip 5 on our clips page.
A closing promise: "One day we will have a tobaccofree society. And, ladies and gentlemen, we're going to have it because of you — you are the future!"
Space permitting, Mr. Reynolds encourages sponsors to invite members
of the local community to his middle and high school talks, and
to immediately follow with a Town Meeting about smoking, after students
return to class.
Tobacco is a truly important global issue: one out of three people worldwide are currently addicted. As a result, in coming decades smoking may kill one billion people in this century, according to the UN World Health Organization.
Tobacco Wars! The Battle for a Smokefree Society educates and inspires college students, community members and health conference attendees.
This speaker reaches the hearts and minds of his audiences. Patrick Reynolds opens with stories about the RJ Reynolds family, by turns colorful, humorous and moving. He speaks vividly and movingly about his memories his father's and eldest brother's deaths from smoking, and then switches gears and offers a report card on tobacco control for the State he is in.
He'll compare your State to the rest of the nation in four areas: current State tobacco taxes, State spending this year on youth smoking prevention, spending on cessation, and your State's current laws limiting smoking in restaurants, bars and other workplaces. Finally, he'll suggest what can be done to bring about change.
Mr. Reynolds will also offer his insightful perspective on the influence of the tobacco lobby on Congress, the UN World Health Organization's Global Treaty on Tobacco Control, ratified by 170 nations as of June, 2011, the new FDA law to regulate tobacco, and the cutting of highly successful tobacco prevention programs by most States.
He'll provide the current number of States which have passed strong Statewide 100% smoking bans (28 as of June, 2011).
Time permitting, Patrick will include a powerful section from his talk for grades six through twelve: he'll recount the moving and powerful story of Sean Marsee, a young track star who died at 19 from chewing tobacco. He'll illustrate that story with shocking before and after Power Point slides and videos
For comic relief, he shows some hilarious slides which make fun of Joe Camel, depicting him in a hospital bed, and present "Malboro Country" as a group of smokers huddled in an alley behind an office building, getting their nicotine fix.
He briefly mentions other addictions of our society -- drugs, alcohol, food, and more. "Looking at the big picture, these addictions are a way of avoiding our pain, and changing our mood. But it's better to face the problem at hand instead of avoiding our feelings," he says.
At colleges, reviving an ancient traditionof initiation. The core message is, "Life is designed to be painful at times, and you can do it. When tough moments come, and they will, don't avoid your pain by using tobacco, drugs, alcohol, or even abuse food, music, or work, like so many uninitiated adults do.
"Instead stay with your problem, talk to others about it, and take steps to solve it. Share your problem and feelings with someone, whether your friends, the school counselor, a trusted teacher or mentor, or your parents... Welcome! You're initiated now, and a bit closer to the world of adults."
Before some college groups, Mr. Reynolds also includes a short section near the end to empower students to keep faith in the future, and to deal more effectively with their doubts and fears about the years ahead. In an age of economic upheaval and an uncertain economy, new diseases such as AIDS, SARS and bird flu, reports on global warming, the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, and the threat of terrorist attacks at home -- all these have raised levels of worry and pessimism among students about the future."
Mr. Reynolds believes that the danger of widespread pessimism among youth is a likely contributor to increased rates of tobacco, alcohol and drug use. If we can inspire students to keep faith in the future, this should motivate them to hold on to their health.
Mr. Reynolds asks students to 1) Talk about their worries and fears to another person, 2) Affirm the positive, 3) Reevaluate: what is real wealth, anyway? Is it only about money? and 4) to "Catch my faith, my rock solid faith in that in the long term, there are wondrous years ahead of us all." He urges students to, "Stay tobacco, drug and alcohol free, for the wondrous, amazing times ahead. Don't smoke, don't drink and don't use drugs — you'll need your health, every precious bit of it, in the incredible future that's coming to us all."
To preview this section, see video Clip 5 on our clips page.
Finally Mr. Reynolds offers a closing promise — an inspiring vision of the coming tobaccofree society.
After, there is a Q & A session, and if time permits, an informal
reception following the talk.
Patrick Reynolds' appearances in the national media and before Congress have made this grandson of tobacco company magnate R.J. Reynolds an internationally known and respected advocate for a smokefree society.
Mr. Reynolds saw his father, oldest brother, and other relatives die from cigarette induced emphysema and lung cancer. Concerned about the mounting health evidence against tobacco, in 1986 he became the first tobacco industry figure to turn his back on the cigarette business. In the words of former Surgeon General C. Everett Koop, "Patrick Reynolds is one of the nation's most influential advocates of a smokefree America." His book, THE GILDED LEAF, published by Little, Brown in 1989, was a bestseller, and he founded The Foundation for a Smokefree America in the same year.
A dynamic speaker, Mr. Reynolds entertains, educates and motivates audiences. And the media coverage of his appearance will bring the smokefree message to your entire community. Patrick Reynolds has addressed Congress, State legislatures, major corporations, associations, health conferences, universities, and high and elementary schools. It is in the latter category that he now wishes to devote the majority of his attention.
Patrick Reynolds' appearances in the international press include profiles by Time, Newsweek, AP, UPI, NBC's Tom Brokaw, CBS' Dan Rather, ABC World News, CNN Headline News, and numerous features by the world's major dailies. He has also made memorable TV appearances on Oprah, The Today Show, Good Morning America, CBS This Morning, Larry King, ABC's Nightline, Phil Donahue, Extra, Entertainment Tonight, and numerous other national and international television and radio shows.
Reynolds' program makes for great public relations for your group. He's an ideal speaker for the Great American Smokeout Day, Red Ribbon Week, your Health Awareness Week and World No Tobacco Day. Forward this link to your Community Relations or Public Relations director, and suggest they think about bringing Patrick Reynolds in to speak.
Mr. Reynolds has been called powerful, inspirational and motivating. His dynamic talk makes a lasting impression, and media coverage has been consistently positive and strong. Sponsors will build a valuable bridge to their community.
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Make one local phone call to a likely sponsor, to bring Mr. Reynolds in to present a motivational talk in your city. Your phone call proposing this idea may soon result in a live talk to youth or adults, and you'll have made a difference in your community. Please take a minute and look over our suggested local sponsors and talking points.