Rick Rigsby is an American motivational speaker, minister, former professor, and author of a bestselling book. He came under the spotlight after a commencement speech he gave went viral and earned him a lot of attention. The speech has been recognized as one of the most passionate and inspiring speeches ever given by anyone. In fact, he began getting hundreds of offers to speak at events, and everywhere he went, audiences were transformed by his wisdom.
The speaker is also the owner of his own business, Rick Rigsby Communications, where he currently serves as CEO and President. In his former professional life, he was an award-winning reporter who had a thriving career on television for a brief period before he went into the world of academia. He spent twenty years as a college professor, mostly at Texas A&M University. Rick has made his mark across different corners of the world – from Europe, all the way to Africa. He has been invited to share his wealth of insight with Fortune 500 couples, service organizations, academic functions, sports events, and more. He has several published books to his credit, but his non-academic work Lessons from a Third Grade Dropout is the most popular amongst them.
Rick Rigsby – Bio
Rick was born in 1962 in San Francisco, California. He came from a humble background. His father was a third-grade dropout who earned a living by working as a cook and toiling on the family farm. Despite his father’s lack of proper education, Rick regards him as the wisest man he has ever met in his entire life and it was him who taught him to become the thinking man he is today. His father believed in getting the best out of life and encouraged his son to live by the same standards. He was raised to be kind, to not judge people, to always do good, to always show up on time, to strive to leave an impact, and always do things the right way.
Upon graduating from high school, Rick enrolled in California State University, Chico, where he earned a degree in Mass Communication in 1978. He later graduated from California State University, Fresno, in 1987 with a Masters’s degree in Public Communications. He attained his doctorate degree in Rhetoric Communication from the University of Oregon. After his graduate studies, Rick Rigsby worked as an assistant professor at his alma mater.
In 1992, he accepted an assistant professorship at Texas A&M University, where he lectured on speech communication. He was nominated for the Outstanding Teaching Award twice and won both times. At the same time, he worked as a chaplain and character coach for the football squad, Texas A&M Aggies, which earned him an Outstanding Faculty Diversity Award. Rick quit academia after 14 glorious years then he relocated to Dallas so as to build his own business.
He expanded his career as a motivational speaker, offering private and corporate services as a speaker and coach. He spoke for a number of top organizations like the National Football League and PGA.
Wife and Family
Rick Rigsby has been married twice. His first marriage was to Trina Williams, whom he met while he was still in college. He was serving as a linesman on the school’s football team and offered her dance at one of the school events which she accepted. While dancing, he decided to ask for her number and surprisingly, she gave him her real number. They began dating and then decided to get married a few years later when she was working as a delivery nurse and he was serving as a cubs reporter. They had two children together, but their happily ever after was ruined when she was diagnosed with cancer. Trina lost the fight against the disease in 1996.
The author and motivational speaker were depressed for a long time after his wife died. It took the love and support from friends and family for him to pick himself up and try to move on with his life. He later met and married his current wife Janet Butcher, with whom he shares two more kids. Rick Rigsby lives in Dallas with his family and he enjoys hunting, listening to country music, and fishing just like the locals.
Facts About the Author
1. The viral motivational speech that he gave at the California State University Maritime Academy was viewed by over 130 million people around the world in just a few days in 2017.
2. Rick Rigsby is the founder of a church called Impact Family Ministries.
3. He serves as the CEO of the organization known as Impact World Group.