Hicks AM MBE FRSA
Gill Hicks is considered one of the most thought-provoking, powerful and life affirming speakers in Australia and the UK. She is known globally as a survivor of the London Terrorist Bombings of 7 July 2005.
She survived, but suffered severe and permanent injuries, losing both legs from just below the knee.
Originally from Adelaide, Gill moved to London in 1991. In 2012 Gill returned to Australia, where she now operates nationally and internationally through her not-for-profit M.A.D. for Peace network and her public speaking engagements.
Drawing upon her previous roles within the Arts, Gill’s compelling projects and initiatives are aimed at deterring anyone from following the path of violent extremism and building sustainable models for peace.
In her impressive career before the bombings she was at the helm of some of the UK's most respected and prestigious institutions. Her roles included being Publishing Director of the architecture, design and contemporary culture magazine Blueprint; Director of the Dangerous Minds design consultancy; and Head Curator at the Design Council.
It wasn't until after the bombings that Gill decided to dedicate her life to being an advocate for peace.
In 2007 Gill founded the not-for-profit organisation M.A.D. for Peace, a platform that connects people globally and encourages us to think of 'peace' as a verb, something that we have an individual responsibility to 'do' every day.
The following year Gill released her first book, One Unknown, named after the chilling label given to her when she arrived at the hospital after the bombing as an unidentified body. The book received fantastic reviews and was shortlisted for the Mind Book of the Year Awards (2008).
The honours and impressive achievements Gill has received demonstrate her commitment to making a personal difference. These accolades include, but are not limited to: being selected to carry the 2008 Olympic Torch in Canberra; being recognised with an MBE in the Queen's New Year's Honours List (2008-09) for her services to charity; and becoming both the Australian of the Year in the UK and Australian Woman of the Year in the UK in 2009. Gill has received two Honorary Doctorates: one in Philosophy from the London Metropolitan University, recognising her contribution to architecture and design and her work promoting the importance of establishing sustainable peace; the other from Kingston University in recognition of her dedication to rehabilitative health.
Since her return to Australia in 2012, she has been recognised as the South Australian, Australian of the Year 2015 and is Chair of the Innovation component for the Committee for Adelaide.
In 2013, Gill welcomed her daughter Amelie into the world. She describes it as is her finest achievement and greatest acknowledgement of the brilliance and resilience of the human body.
Client Comments for Gill Hicks
- What can I say, it was absolutely insanely amazing; theatrical, moving and beautiful!
Wired for Wonder
- Gill Hicks is the most fascinating guest I've ever had on my program.
Gill's ability to discover moments of kindness and insight (and even humour) in her ordeal is astonishing and deeply moving.
She tells her story in such a compelling manner; she generated a flood of warm responses from people who simply had to stop what they were doing, and just listen, spellbound, to her voice.
Richard Fidler, ABC Radio
- You could hear a pin drop, in all my years in events management I have never seen an audience so gripped by every word, Gill inspired us all, amazing...
Adelaide Convention Centre
- In her speaking engagements on behalf of Leonard Cheshire Disability she always manages to move and inspire people so their combined energy and creativity can be used positively to benefit others less able.
Leonard Cheshire Disability
- Gill held the audience spellbound for well over an hour. The presentation was both confronting and inspirational. It gave our members a new perspective on prioritising their lives and what is truly important as well as the sheer determination in beating the odds... truly a unique experience.
YPO Education Chair
- Gill is a constant reminder that our work is hugely valued and appreciated, and has become a dear friend to many. Her frequent and overwhelmingly positive comments about St Thomas', her fundraising efforts and her willingness to talk candidly about her experiences as a patient and of her recovery continue to enrich the lives of everyone who has met her since those tragic events on July 7.
Guy's St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust
- Gill was the perfect speaker for the end of day - she had the audience enthralled and the evaluation feedback was 100% positive. I would have absolutely NO hesitation in recommending Gill to any event.
Aged & Community Services Australia
- The presentation from Gill... What an inspirational presentation and a great speaker... very honest and authentic.
Mental Illness Fellowship South Australia
- You could have heard a pin drop when Gill was doing her presentation.
She is very generous in sharing private & intimate moments and teaches her audience just how precious life is. Every person I spoke to just loved her and her message and our CEO said that Gill was the best speaker that she had ever heard.
City of Yarra
- Real and raw. Gill is a lovely and brave woman.
Inspiring and a fantastic way to end the conference. I wasn't aware of her story, and was touched and inspired by her presentation to us.
Wow. Gill was amazing – so humble and funny and such an amazing story of courage and resilience. The closing conference session delivered in spades.
A remarkable life story and one that will stick with me for a long time. If we could measure engagement on the faces of the delegates over the 3 days, she won hands down.
An absolutely brilliant choice as the closing speaker of a conference that was all about shedding fear and embracing a new world.
Recruitment & Consulting Services Association
- Accessibility – exploring ability within disability
- Choose choice - The greatest power we have is the power to choose how we want to respond and react to every single moment of our lives.
- Facing the Unknown: A story of achievement over adversity
- One Unknown
- Peace – imagine if it was a Verb!
- Surviving Life – what are the attributes we need to live the best, most rewarding and fulfilling life possible.
- What’s the Worst that Can Happen? – exploring what ‘we’ fear. Imagine if we took fear out of living – what could we achieve?
"Very helpful... any assistance I ask for is never a problem. Great work."
Wakool Shire Council
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