News Release

Former Prisoner, Monk to Speak on Servant Leadership at Dalton State

September 9, 2013

Matt TenneyMatt Tenney will share his experience of how he turned a bad decision into a learning experience in a free program at Dalton State.

Matt Tenney has spent time as a prisoner, a monk, and now as a social entrepreneur spreading his message of doing well by doing good to audiences near and far. He brings his compelling program on the value of servant leadership to Dalton State in a free program Tuesday, September 24.

After attempting to steal $2.7 million from the U.S. government in 2001, Tenney, then 24, was convicted and sentenced to five and a half years in a military prison. While serving his sentence, Tenney says he transformed his outlook on life, choosing to consider his wrongdoing as not a setback, but a way to move forward.

Upon being released from prison, Tenney moved to Mexico to live in a monastery. After living as a monk for three years, he founded a non-profit organization, “Kids Kicking Cancer,” and became devoted to teaching the practice of servant leadership. He currently serves as a trainer with the Perth Leadership Institute and travels the country as a motivational speaker. He turns all profits from his speaking engagements over to charity.

“Matt Tenney’s story had an impact on me,” says Montana Gray, Dalton State student and chair of the Campus Activities Board’s culture and awareness committee. “His beliefs shifted my actions, his kindness melted my cynical shell, and his talk changed me for the better. His presence alone is inspirational.”

Of Tenney, others have said, “Probably the best speaker I’ve heard at any convention,” and “Terrific! Well-delivered message that should cause each of us to refocus our priorities, lives, and mindsets.”

The program, sponsored by the Office of Student Life, is free and open to the public. Tenney will speak in Goodroe Auditorium in Dalton State College’s Gignilliat Memorial Hall on Tuesday September 24 at 7:30 pm. Seating is first come, first served.

Dalton State, 650 College Drive, Dalton, GA 30720
706.272.4436 • 1.800.829.4436 • www.daltonstate.edu