Dave Jacka


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Keynote Speeches

Dave’s speeches give a true, heart-felt insight into how an unexpected accident changes a life.

Dave’s presentations are entertaining, humorous, but also empowering – with clear messages for audiences.

Six Percent

In this keynote Dave shares his inspiring story from a bulletproof 19-year old who experiences a devastating motorbike accident that left him with quadriplegia, how he rebuilt his life, to eventually following his boyhood dream of learning to fly. With only six percent physical function, Dave talks about some of the attitudinal and physical challenges he’s faced and how support has been key to enable him to thrive and live his dreams.

This keynote is suitable for themes including; disability awareness, diversity and inclusion.



“On behalf of the Defence Science and Technology Group (DSTG), I wish to sincerely thank you for helping us to celebrate International Day of People with Disability on 3 December 2020 with DSTG staff. 

Your keynote presentation sharing your life experience living with quadriplegia and speaking so personally and from the heart about disability was a wonderful contribution to the event.  You shared with us your first-hand account of some of the barriers you have had to overcome from a young age and into adulthood, and how you were able to achieve some of your life long dreams with determination and courage. Your openness about your disability was a great insight for the people in the audience and brought about a wider awareness to disability and inclusion in our workplace.  This was evident with all questions people in the audience had for you. 

DSTG delivers high quality science and technology that ensures Australia’s Defence and National Security capabilities remain at the leading edge in a strategic environment characterised by rapid change and transformational technologies. We strive for a workplace that values the broad range of experiences, knowledge and skills of our people. To continue producing science and technology outcomes to safeguard Australia, we need to draw on the full scope of talent in the community by attracting and retaining the best talent for the future. Your talk will help us do that.”
Dr Peter Shoubridge, Disability Champion, Department of Defence


“Dave Jacka was special guest speaker with CASA this year as part of our International Day of People with Disability celebrations. Dave’s key messages of resilience, determination and courage were powerful and authentic. His extremely personable manner and honesty ensured that his presentation struck a chord with the audience. Dave’s aviation achievements also resonated and inspired the CASA audience. Dave stressed the importance of surrounding yourself with positive people and how, with this unwavering support, anything is possible regardless of whether you have a disability or not. The feedback received from so many of the CASA attendees has been wonderful. Dave, your speech was truly heartfelt and inspirational. Thank you.”
Tracey Frey, Executive Diversity Champion, Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA)

“Dave Jacka presented to the MCC staff this year, and the feedback from his session sharing his experiences was particularly positive.  His key messages of resilience, determination and courage, as well as his insights regarding breaking down tasks into small parts and achieving progress incrementally was powerful.  His personable manner and openness ensured that his presentation really struck a chord with the audience.  It was a delight to have Dave as part of our MCC Learning Hub week.”
Donna Price, General Manager, People and Culture, Melbourne Cricket Club

“Each year for our major fundraiser (Dinner Under The Stars) we look for a special guest presenter with a story that resonates, challenges stereotypes and inspires. Dave Jacka’s story hit the mark perfectly. His presentation took every one of our 200 guests on a personal journey through his life and made us all wonder how we would cope if we were in his shoes. It also stressed the importance of support from family and friends for anyone who is transforming or rebuilding their life after such a life changing event. Dave’s story proves yet again that anything is possible with determination, support, commitment and a refusal to accept boundaries imposed by others.”
Phil Hayes-Brown, CEO, Wallara Australia Ltd
“On behalf of Toastmasters International District 73, I would like to extend my thanks and appreciation for your keynote speech delivered at our semi-annual convention held at the Rydges on Swanston on 9 November, 2013.

The feedback I have received from so many of the attendees has been wonderful. Your speech, and the positive manner in which it was delivered, was motivational and inspirational.

It is always a difficult task to identify an ideal keynote speaker for an event attended almost exclusively by people who are themselves focused on improving their public speaking skills. Everyone I spoke to after the event, though, agreed wholeheartedly that you were the best possible person we could have had to fill that important role.

I would like to point out that the keynote speaker is, in my opinion, one of the most crucial roles in any event – that person setting the tone for what is to come. As the coordinator the semi-annual convention, you delivered everything I could have hoped for and helped me achieve my own goal of ensuring the District had a memorable event.”
Keir Wells, Division Governor, Eastern Division, District 73, Toastmasters Organisation.
“A great speech the audience was totally engrossed in… I would recommend booking Dave as a speaker to uplift and motivate your staff or audience.”
Elaine Doyle, Train to Speak.
“This is just a short message to express my sincere thanks to Dave for the outstanding presentation he gave at our club meeting last night. Dave came across as a very special person with remarkable qualities of integrity, resilience, humour and humility. The fact that questions had to be prematurely stopped as the meeting had run well over time is a testament to the effect he had on our club members. I have been responsible for arranging the speakers at our club for now four out of the past five years and can say that there has not been a better speaker at our club over that period and that includes some other amazing speakers. The presentation by Dave was simply first class and truly inspiring.”
Rotary Club of Brighton North
“Dave Jacka spoke to the DPI and DSE Young Professionals Network (YPN) at our forum looking at “making the most of opportunity”. With his infectious optimism and dry humour Dave told us his inspiring story, showing us that if you set your goals and persevere, you can achieve seemingly impossible things. We would heartily recommend Dave as a fantastic speaker for your next function or event.”
Young Professionals Network of Department of Primary Industries and Department of Sustainability & Environment
“With this email I just wanted to tell you once again, how awesome your speech and your whole life is concerning your power of endurance and never giving up. I really want to set a big focus of my power of endurance as well, to achieve the goals I want to. Thank you once again that you inspired all of us with your fascinating story.”
Student, Victoria University