Private Jaco van Gass


Private Jaco van Gass is an armed forces motivational speaker who takes his inspiration from his own personal experiences as serviceman and fighting on the front line in Afghanistan for the British army.

Alongside his work as a motivational speaker Jaco is known for his world travels and adventuring: as part of the Armed Forces charity Walking with the Wounded, van Gass has trekked to the North Pole, climbed Mt. Everest and summited Mt. Manaslu. Private Jaco often tells stories about these unpatrolled accomplishments in his work as an after dinner speaker, drawing on both the determination required by himself and his companions and the sheer wonder he experienced to create moving and incredibly motivational content.

Retiring from the armed forces after sustaining significant injuries in the line of duty Private Jaco van Gass now works as a motivational speaker and charity fundraiser; the physical loss of his left arm and the damage to the rest of his body forced van Gass to redirect his life away from his childhood dream of serving in the British army.

Born in South Africa Jaco moved to England at the age of twenty with the express purpose of joining the world renowned British Armed Forces, completing his training in 2007 Private Jaco van Gass went on to join the well-respected Parachute Regiment. It was less than six months into his tour of Afghanistan that van Gass was severely injured and unfortunately had to give up on his dream when it had only just begun.

However, those who witness his work as a public speaker often note that his inherent determination and personality make him one of the most effective motivational speakers on the after dinner speaker circuit. Not only is Private Jaco van Gass an awe-inspiring public speaker but, more importantly, he is a charming and witty gentleman – his politeness, and charisma make him both memorable and entertaining as a motivational speaker, his ability to mix humour in with the intense drama and seriousness of his personal experiences manages to set audiences at ease whilst simultaneously inspiring them.

To book Jaco van Gass as the motivational sports speaker for your corporate event, function or conference, simply contact the Champions Speakers agency by emailing or by calling a booking agent directly on 0207 1010 553.

When at corporate events, Jaco is known to cover the following topics:

  • Overcoming Adversity
  • Managing Change
  • Personal Determination
  • Peak Performance
  • Sporting Success
  • Motivation & Inspiration