Eric  Maddox

Eric Maddox

Winning Trust Through Empathy-Based Listening

In-Person Fee Range:
$15,001 - $20,000
Traveling from:
Inspirational, Motivational, Empathy Based Speaker

Eric Maddox

Winning Trust Through Empathy-Based Listening

In-Person Fee Range:
$15,001 - $20,000
Traveling from:

Why Book

  • Wow and captivate your audience with one of the most daring war stories from one of the best storytellers in America.
  • He delivers not only a compelling and entertaining story about communication, but a battle tested tool that audience members can use every day to get better outcomes in their own negotiations. That tool is empathy-based listening, and it’s the number one way to gain trust and maximize influence.
  • An Eric Maddox keynote is an entertainment event people will remember for years…and you’ll be remembered as a hero for booking him!


Upon graduating from Sapulpa High School in 1990, Eric Maddox attended the University of Oklahoma where, just months before graduating he made an appointment with an on campus recruiter and enlisted in the United States military. Four weeks after graduation, Eric left for the U.S. Army as an infantry paratrooper for the 82nd Airborne Division where he became a jumpmaster and entered Ranger School. After spending three years as a paratrooper with a Ranger tab, Eric reenlisted as an interrogator and Chinese Mandarin linguist.
In 2003, three months after U.S. forces invaded Iraq, Staff Sergeant Maddox received unexpected orders to report to the Baghdad International Airport. There he was assigned to a Delta Force Special Operations team in Tikrit. The team was a part of the Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC) responsible for tracking down the most wanted men in the world, or the infamous Deck of Cards.

During his six month tour with this Delta Force team, he conducted over 300 interrogations and collected the intelligence which directly led to the capture of Saddam Hussein. For his accomplishments, Eric was awarded the Legion of Merit, the National Intelligence Medal of Achievement, the Defense Intelligence Agency’s Director’s Award and the Bronze Star.

Following the capture of Saddam Hussein, Eric was hired as the first civilian interrogator for the Defense Intelligence Agency where he continued to work with the Joint Special Operations Command in tracking down the U.S. military’s most wanted radical extremists. Since 2003, Eric has conducted over 2,700 interrogations of prisoners from 25 different countries while deploying eight times including: two tours to Iraq, three tours to Afghanistan; and tours to The Philippines, Bosnia and Herzegovina as well as undisclosed locations in Eastern Europe.

Eric served in the U.S. Army and the Defense Intelligence Agency for over 20 years before retiring in 2014. He continues to help corporations, organizations, universities, CEOs and audiences worldwide in the art of questioning, negotiations and information gathering.

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“What’s Your Ace of Spades?”

Eric Maddox is more than a storyteller — as a keynote speaker, he becomes a mentor and guide, drawing insightful lessons from his war time stories that can be applied to different situations. In his experiences, empathy-based listening has drawn people closer to their goals, no matter what they may be. He believes that this active form of listening gains the trust of the people you interact with every day. It is, in his words, the number one tool for expanding your influence in all areas of life. As one of the most sought-after event speakers, Eric Maddox shares how you can use this powerful technique to turn customers to advocates, bosses to leaders, and followers to active contributors in a team.
Each moment of Eric’s story draws parallels to the way business intelligence is gathered and the necessity of innovation in an ever-changing landscape. The methods and techniques are as relevant in the boardroom as they are on the battlefield. They are proven methods of success up and down the command structure. Eric Maddox and his story will inspire your organization to take action and risks for growth and unprecedented success.

Keynote Topics

Eric can adapt his keynotes to address your event focus, industry, specific business challenges or areas of opportunity.

  • Empathy based listening
  • Innovation
  • Leadership and influence
  • Perseverance
  • Culture change
  • Teamwork
  • Better decision making
  • Becoming a change agent
  • Adapting to a changing industry

Eric Maddox Reviews

“A one-in-a-billion story…best speaker I’ve ever had the pleasure to work with. [Eric’s] willingness to spend time tailoring the presentation and answering members questions after the conference was most appreciated. I wish all the speakers I work with could be as generous and caring about the outcome of their efforts.”

— Alison Zimmerman

“One of the best keynote speakers I’ve ever seen! Eric’s amazing story of finding Saddam Hussein kept me on the edge of my seat and inspired me to challenge the status quo.”

— Nathan Badgett

“It was an experience I will never forget. Eric is an amazing person with an amazing story to tell.”

— Ron Lallo

“It was unbelievable! Eric was GREAT!!!! So many members said it was the best event ever! He stayed for three hours after the program to mingle with the guests during strolling dinner which is such a nice touch. So many speakers do their ‘thing’ then want to leave immediately. Our members mentioned to me many times ‘he’s a hero’. I can’t tell you enough how much our members loved it!”

— Maureen Panone


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