Ask about John Schumann OAM
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Key Points
  • Leader of the legendary folk-rock band Redgum and his Vietnam veterans’ anthem I Was Only 19.
  • An accomplished musician, writer, political activist and public intellectual.
  • His passion for social justice and the environment led him into mainstream politics.
  • Was commissioned by the then Chief of Army, LT GEN David Morrison, to write a song commemorating the service of Indigenous soldiers in World War 1 and beyond.
Topics
  • The story behind the song I Was Only 19
    A personal and historical perspective
  • The debt we owe
    Australians, our veterans and the Anzac tradition
  • Reflections on Australia in the 1960s and 70s
    What it means today
  • The conduct of our national affairs
  • The fact is, with enough notice, I can write a speech on almost anything...
Testimonials

John absolutely nailed it! His honest, evocative and funny presentation touched each and every one of our delegates. It was an absolute privilege to sit and listen to John as he took us though Australia in the 60s, 70s and 80s, culminating in us experiencing a unique and amazing performance of I Was Only 19. To see people approaching John after his performance with tears in their eyes was incredible and I thank John most sincerely for getting our Convention off to the perfect start.
Australian Pipelines and Gas Association

Not just an entertaining speaker, but a man whose passion for his topic is infectious. When he recited one of his poems, you could have heard a pin drop. A breath of fresh air on the speaking circuit with an abiding concern for our history - and not afraid to speak his mind. A gentleman with an Aussie accent.
Director
Port Dock Brewery

John Schumann commanded the attention of the 1400 strong crowd of students and staff with his passionate and charismatic delivery. His words challenged the adolescent audience and struck a chord with the teachers. His speech continued to reverberate around the school long after he’d caught the plane back to Adelaide.
House Director
Aquinas College

Inspiring and entertaining. I enjoyed it immensely
Managing Partner
Windevere Bellman Solicitors

John’s keynote address at our 40th anniversary was entertaining, engaging and enlightening.  The audience ranged from Government Ministers and experienced educators to parents of children in Catholic schools.  John completely engaged and entertained all attendees with his unique ability to create interesting and humorous connections between his work and life experiences to the subject at hand.  
President
Federation of Catholic School Parent Communities

John Schumann was great!
President
Port Adelaide Chamber of Commerce.

John’s first speech for us was a thought-provoking address that defined the character, culture and essence of what it means to be a Port Adelaide supporter.  He was so good we got him back the very next year. That time he gave a spellbinding speech on “I was only 19” – providing a wonderful and emotional insight into the journey of a song that has became an Australian icon.  
Vice-President/Treasurer
Port Adelaide Supporters Group WA

John’s delivery was perfect!  It’s a rare occurrence that we manage to find an opener who understands the work, doesn’t resort to “artspeak”, has a healthy sense of humour and takes the audience along for the journey.
BMGART, Adelaide

John is a skilled and trusted facilitator. He is equally able to cajole or direct. Most importantly, John can always find a way forward through the most complex and intractable situations.
Director: Council Services and Chancellery
University of SA

John is a straight shooter - not your average facilitator.  He challenges your thinking with good left-field ideas.  John brings out creativity in teams – but with good, grounding reality checks.  Also listens and helps you plan ahead – all with a good dash of humour.
CDirector, Communications and Engagement
Adelaide & Mt Lofty Ranges Natural Resources Management Board

John helped us formulate our strategic and operational planning templates and determine our outcomes. He then worked with us, on site, to populate the plans and get the logic and the language right. His workshops were challenging, entertaining and, most importantly, productive.
Operations Manager
Outback Region
Department of Environment & Heritage (SA)

The session John facilitated for our group was around refining our vision, mission and identifying our key messages. John’s facilitation style challenged and encouraged team members to participate beyond their normal comfort zone. Our team produced excellent outcomes in a relatively short space of time, due to John’s handling of the team dynamics. He elicited contributions from those team members who prefer to be “observers” and turned the deliberately disruptive team members into positive contributors. He kept us on task and on time – no small feat given a group of diverse thinkers.
Chief Executive Officer
Corporate Health Group

John immediately engages the group – focusing them on the subject, the methodology and the imperative. Thereafter, through a combination of engagement, entertainment and challenge, the solution is drawn from within the room with astonishing clarity and rapidity.
Hunters Management and Consulting

At my invitation, John Schumann was the inaugural speaker in the Brian Medlin Memorial series at Flinders University, an important and prestigious event designed to begin recognition of one of Flinders University’s most innovative and significant foundation Professors. John’s speech was inspiring, intelligent, beautifully balanced – given that Medlin was a highly controversial figure – and a resounding success.
Professor Brian Matthews