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Terry Waite CBE

Hostage Negotiator, Humanitarian and Author

Terry Waite has led a remarkable life as a diplomat and a humanitarian. A world-renowned agent of peace and a testament to the power and resilience of the human spirit, his life is devoted to humanitarian causes, inter-cultural relations and conflict resolution.

"He touched our hearts, our minds, our souls" Augustana College

Terry Waite CBE - speaker profile photo

In detail

Waite garnered international recognition in the 1980s when, serving as a special envoy to the Archbishop of Canterbury, he successfully negotiated the release of hostages in Iran and LibyaIn 1987, while negotiating the release of hostages in Beirut, Waite was himself taken hostage. In captivity for 1,763 days (four years of which were in solitary confinement), he was chained to a wall, often left in darkness, beaten and subjected to mock executions.

What he offers you

In his lectures, Waite gives audiences a perspective of world affairs founded on open communication, cooperation and a deep understanding of diverse cultures. There has been a particular interest in the lectures he has delivered relating his experiences as a negotiator and hostage to the pressures faced by executives and managers.

How he presents

Stress, loneliness and negotiating under acute pressure are but some of the issues with which he has unique experience, and his ability to communicate clearly and with a good humour has placed him in constant demand as a speaker not only to the business community, but also to professionals in social work, education, medicine, and religious groups.


He presents in English

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Speaking topics

  • Iraq, Guantanamo and Human Rights
  • Beyond Captivity: Turning Misfortune into Positive Actions
  • International Terrorism: Examining the Root Causes
  • Public Service, Personal Faith
  • Overcoming the Roadblocks to Peace in the Middle East

Books and publications

  • 2000
    Travels with a Primate
  • 1995
    Footfalls in Memory
  • 1993
    Taken on Trust


  • 1992
    Doctor h.c. Yale University Divinity School
  • 1992
    Doctor of International Law h.c. and Honorary Chancellor, Florida Southern University
  • 1992
    Honorary L.H.D. (Wittenburg University
  • 1985
    Templeton UK award BBC Man of the Year
  • 1992
    Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE)
  • 1982
    Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE)

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