- Bullying Prevention
- The Power of Perspective
- Overcoming Life’s Obstacles
- The Power of a Simple Act of Kindness
- Promoting an Empathetic Mindset
- Recognizing Struggle as a Means by which to Grow
- Understanding the Power of Choice
- The Difference between Activism and “Slacktivisim”
- The Science of Kindness
- Professional Development Workshops
- Parent Workshops
Prior to embarking on his career as a speaker and advocate for kindness, Rich was a science teacher for 15 years at a middle school on Long Island, New York. As a man of science, perspective is something he learned at a younger age than most, and has always been something he was fascinated with. On his thirteenth birthday, Rich was admitted to the hospital with a life-threatening condition called benign idiopathic Intracranial Hypertension. His bout with the disease nearly killed him and robbed him of the vision in his right eye. Realizing how short life could be, Rich decided to make the most of his time and made a pact with himself to make every day count.
For almost 25 years he stood by that code until life tested him again with the tragic loss of his only son, Richard Edwin-Ehmer (Rees) Specht at just 22 months old. Just when he was ready to give in to despair, a kind stranger came to him and reminded him of the power of simple acts of kindness. The acts of kindness that he and his family received after Rees’ passing inspired them to “pay forward” that kindness.
Rich and his wife started “The ReesSpecht Life Foundation” in memory of their son. Its goal was simple: Remind people of the power of human kindness; which the foundation does in the form of scholarships for High School seniors, and the worldwide distribution of almost four hundred thousand ReesSpecht Life “pay it forward” cards.
The work of Rich and the ReesSpecht Life Foundation has been featured by The Today Show, Fox and Friends, CBS News and many other news outlets and publications. In 2014, Rich wrote the award winning children’s book “A Little Rees Specht Cultivates Kindness”, which is slated to become an animated television series that teaches children that our kind acts are like seeds that help to cultivate kindness in others. The book and television adaptations of A Little Rees Specht Cultivates Kindness represents the culmination of Rich’s goal to help make this world a little better, one Rees’ piece at a time.
Rich’s presentations are sure to leave your students/staff with the belief that they too have the power to overcome anything life throws at them and make a difference in this world.
Rich Specht uses his experience in starting a foundation with a worldwide reach to inspire audience members to recognize their power to take something small and cultivate it into something much bigger. The presentation starts with an introduction to Rich’s personal story and worldwide reach of his ReesSpecht Life Foundation.” The message of the ReesSpecht Life Foundation is that even the littlest pieces can make a big difference and Rich will prove it to the audience members.
Using the experiences he had after the loss of his only son, Rich will demonstrate that the only tools needed for success are determination and time. Using his science background and several interactive demonstrations, Rich will prove this idea and inspire the audience to start doing the little things that will prove to be the difference maker in their lives.
Whether he is speaking to a kindergartener about the children’s book he authored or the executive of a corporation about how to inspire others, Rich’s approach never changes. His presentation will leave everyone in attendance with the formula for making their goals a reality. As a reminder of the ideals to which he speaks, Rich will provide all in attendance with a “ReesSpecht Life Card” as a reminder that it’s the little things that make a big difference. Rich is available to answer questions upon the conclusion of each session
“…this organization is truly inspirational. I’ve now seen you speak twice at Driftwood Day Camp as a staff member, and they have both been incredible. Keep doing exactly what you do!” –Jamie G. (Counselor Driftwood Day Camp)
“Your presentation brought tears to my eyes but joy to my heart. It was truly a privilege to have heard your story… Thank you for bringing true hope back into my heart.” Caterina P. (Suffolk Community College)