Nicola Russell

Nic Russell delivers vibrant, humorous and engaging speeches which inspire audiences and facilitate behaviour change. "Challenges are inevitable: Defeat is optional..."

With a BA in Psychology and Post Graduate Diploma in Communication Management and Public Relations, Nic has helped audiences to face their fears and reach goals they thought impossible.

An inspirational woman, Nic’s natural story telling ability has audiences laughing one minute and crying the next. Her presentations are a rare blend of real life experience, proven strategies, and innovative ideas that can awaken dormant potential.
Nic can unearth the key to:
• Survive and thrive
• Attain Peak Performance
• Become Effective Leaders, Communicators and Persuaders
She can take you on a humorous and engaging journey on overcoming life’s obstacles.

Between 2002 and 2006 Nic lived on Motutapu Island in a small community and contributed time and energy to administration, painting and artwork for the outdoor camp. She returned to university as a distance learner working toward a psychology degree. During this period her daughter Mckenzie (3 yrs) and Nic both developed cancer and together went through a journey that gave Nic a very personal understanding of the death of a child and the physical, mental, emotional and social dynamics of illness, treatment implications, the health system and all support agencies available to children, adults and families. Their story is both extraordinary and inspirational.

In 2005 Nic had been left a solo mum to six year old Conor, a life without her daughter, a broken marriage, no income or possessions and facing an uncertain future. The dawn of 2006 brought a life which Nic could only describe as her worst nightmare – a life without her daughter. Somewhere within her, Nic found the strength and courage to overcome insurmountable challenges, to turn the horror of 2005 into an awe-inspiring tale of determination and hope. Together with her son Conor, Nic started to rebuild their lives and set about establishing a charity in memory of Kenzie, called ‘Kenzie’s Gift’. Nic’s vision is to offer hope and healing to other families affected by cancer by providing much needed psychosocial support through the sharing of ‘Kenzie’s Gift’. She has gained a lot of support from the health community and families alike. Her dream for Kenzie’s Gift is slowly but surely becoming a reality and unearthing the unbelievable power and potential within each of us. Life is at best a series of challenges, and a big enough challenge will bring out strengths and abilities you never knew you had. How you manage life is a matter of choice.

Nic’s awe-inspiring tale of determination and hope has been shaking people into rethinking and changing their own lives and awakening the hidden potential lying dormant within each of them. Nic’s messages jolt people into re-evaluating their own lives, dreams and ambitions. In doing so, she leaves audiences empowered through the realization that each of us can fulfill our goals and dreams.

‘Live it, Love it, Laugh at it, Listen to it’…… Nic believes this was her daughter’s modus operandi to life. Living by these four simple rules makes living life worthwhile. Nic’s story is both extraordinary and inspirational. She chronicles her tumultuous and heart-rending journey with a natural story-telling ability which leaves people laughing one minute and crying the next and her presentation will challenge audiences both emotionally and intellectually as well as motivate individuals, companies and organizations.

Nic has had the unique experience of walking and experiencing the journey as a medical support professional, a parent and a patient and this has brought her insight, awareness and understanding that can be of great benefit to professionals, patients and their families in difficult and challenging situations.


  • Re-evaluate your limitations and potential
  • Promoting the achievable through goal setting
  • Viewing change positively, grasping at the new opportunities it offers
  • Choosing the path to life time success
  • Success is a matter of choice, not chance
  • Creating positive outlooks and transforming attitudes
  • Motivation/Inspiration
  • “Live life and experience the adventure”


‘Nicola’s story is an extremely moving, compelling, and inspirational one which she delivers in a way which speaks to the heart of every person in the audience without any hint of feeling sorry for herself. Nicola held the audience spellbound and we had an overwhelming response from attendees who were extremely touched and inspired by her story. Her determination to create something so positive out of terrible tragedy is courageous to say the least. We will continue to utilise Nicola’s services for client seminars and I would highly recommend her as a key note speaker to any audience looking for inspiration’ ING Life