Laurie Lawrence, a top athlete in his own right, is a former Australian Rugby Union Representative and Olympic and World Champion Swim coach.
There would be few, who do not know of Laurie Lawrence or his spirited personality, his sense of humour or his zest for life. For those who know him well there would be no disputing that his manner is direct, sincere and honest. Whatever Laurie is involved in, he gives all of himself. He cares deeply about the people he influences and he refuses to rest until he has achieved his best. Laurie has been claimed as one of Australia's favourite sons, and is admired by many Australians, from little children who attend his coaching clinics to International Corporate Leaders who look to him for inspiration and new ideas.
Laurie Lawrence is a remarkable Australian - a maker of champions, capable of lifting the spirits of those around him to soaring heights. Swim coaching has played an important part in Laurie's life. He was able to balance his time around the pool with his studies, which resulted in Laurie achieving a Bachelor of Arts Degree, a Teaching Diploma in Physical Education, and a Teaching Diploma. These qualifications have served Laurie and his pupils admirably during his coaching career.
Laurie Lawrence has represented Australia in World Championships, Commonwealth Games and Olympic Games as a swim coach. During the Commonwealth Games in Brisbane (1982) and Edinborough (1986), and the Olympics Games in Los Angeles (1984) and Seoul (1988), Laurie's pupils were standout performers. They succeeded in breaking many National, Commonwealth and World Records in a number of their gold medal winning performances. Lawrence, Jon Sieben - Los Angeles (1984) and Duncan Armstrong - Seoul (1988), both won Olympic gold medals for Australia. Another Lawrence pupil and world record holder, Judy Young, won Para-Olympic gold for Australia when she was victorious in the special section of her 400 metre freestyle event in Seoul in 1988.
Other world-renowned Lawrence champions include Steven Holland and Tracey Wickham. Holland, Australia's 1500 metre freestyle Champion of the Seventies set many world records during his career and won an Olympic bronze medal in the men's 1500 metre final at the 1976 Montreal Olympics. While Wickham, by the time she retired in 1982, was regarded as one of Australia's greatest ever women swimmers. Tracey had won 2 World Cups, 4 Commonwealth Games individual gold medals and held numerous world records over distances such as the 400, 800 and 1500 metres. The last of these records took the best swimmers in the world nine years to break.
During his distinguished career, Laurie has been honoured with many awards. In 1988 he was voted All Sports "National Coach of the Year" in the Sports Australia Awards conducted by the prestigious Confederation of Australian Sports. Australia Day 1989 saw the Prime Minister of Australia, the Right Honourable R.J.L. Hawke, AC, MP, present Laurie with an Australian Achievers Award to honour his selection by the National Australia Day Council as an Australian of the Year finalist. A rare honour indeed! Following this, the Governor of Queensland, Sir Walter Campbell, presented Laurie with the Advance Australia Award during a ceremony at Government House in Brisbane.
The business world and the competitive sports arena make similar demands for high individual achievement, which explains why Laurie today is one of the most sought-after motivational speakers in Australia. Most notably, Laurie recently played a huge part in Australia's success at the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens and the Sydney 2000 Olympics as one of the Australian team motivators.
For many, Laurie represents the beloved Aussie larrikin who loves an audience and a stage, but this is only a tiny glimpse of the man. He sets his goals and encourages those within his influence to work towards personal perfection. And not only is he in demand, he gets results.
Laurie Lawrence is a True Australian in Heart, Mind and Soul.
Excellent. The feedback from the meat industry in general was excellent. Laurie won them over and provided a heart warming 40 minutes to the conference attendees.
-Visy Board Pty Ltd
Excellent. Unbelievable presenter. Extremely inspiring & motivational. He had the whole audience in tears. Laurie was given a standing ovation at the end of his speech & the delegates did not want him to go.
Excellent. Lots of energy and very professional. Had a real passion for motivation.
Excellent. Laurie was excellent and very good as usual. His suggestion of guests photo's with him and Olympic torch is typical of his initiative.
Excellent. Most delegates said Laurie was the most inspiring, entertaining & awesome speaker they've had the privilege of listening to. Worth every $. Received a standing ovation.
Excellent. He was just amazing, had 150 people singing the national anthem.
-Sigma Co. Ltd
Professional & entertaining, a popular choice.
Excellent. Very inspirational. Our delegates just loved him.
-Gelco Consulting Pty Ltd
Excellent. Laurence was both entertaining & informative. He gave us his time freely, arriving before our guests and only leaving when the photographers were complete.
-Amcor Cartonboard Australasia
Excellent. Laurie is an inspiration – He's fun, enthusiastic and passionate. He had the whole group singing & waving serviettes in the air.
-hoo marketing pty ltd
Excellent. Passionate, patriotic and motivational.
-Dalton Fine Paper
Excellent. Laurie enthusiasm and humour was just what we needed to complete our conference.
Excellent. Laurie was an outstanding speaker that helped set the mood for our best conference.
Excellent. superb presentation and very professional – Had the 500 person audience in his grasp and totally won them. He gets better each year!
Excellent. Laurie entertained us, challenged us, focused us and passed on just an ammense amount of drive and energy. What an experience!!
Laurie's presentation as usual was excellent. His ability to involve and hold delegates attention and concentration on his presentation is amazing.
-Australian Federation of Travel Agents (AFTA)
Excellent. Laurie Lawrence was a fantastic addition to our event. Extremely enjoyable and motivational. Re-awakened the pride I have in my country. All delegates went through a roller coaster ride of tears, laughter and pride. Excellent feedback and a great compliment to our agenda
Excellent. His presentation & content of his talk was superb and all present raved about it.
Excellent. Laurie was fantastic, one of the most inspirational and moving speakers I have seen. I would recommend him to anyone.
-First National Real Estate
Excellent. Laurie would have to be one of the best presenters I've ever seen. His abilty to get a traditionally difficult audience participating and so totally engrosed in what he had to say was inspiring. He held the audience's complete attention for the entire presentation. A real professional.
-National Australia Financial Management
Laurie was exciting and really got the crowd going.
-Macquarie Bank Ltd
Excellent. One of the best speakers I have heard.
-DMG Regional Radio Pty Ltd
Excellent. Our group was from the USA (home of motivational speakers!) so for them to rise as to give Laurie a standing ovation says it all. He was absolutely inspirational.
-General Travel Australia
Excellent. Laurie was just fantastic, everybody really enjoyed his presentation. It was very inspiring and bought a few tears to people's eyes. I love his humour and I would recommend him at any time.
-Bayer Australia Pty Ltd
Excellent, and if possible better that that. I built the conference around Laurie and I am glad did, Laurie as always was an absolute inspiration and everybody loved him.
Excellent. Laurie gave our conference the kick off we needed. Laurie was the only choice when it came to selecting a guest speaker and he exceeded our expectations.