Admiral Robert Wray

"Leadership is About Change. Status quo, steady state, is not Leadership."

Dedicated to Providing Leadership Principles to Navigate Difficult Waters

Rear Admiral Robert O. Wray, Jr, USN (Ret.) is an author and seasoned speaker who draws from exceptional experiences in the military and in the private sector to connect with audiences on leadership and business-related topics.

In recent years, he has presented to the financial industry, academic institutions, at military and community gatherings. He is practiced addressing groups ranging in size from 50 to 5000, on a variety of themes. He is equally at ease in front of CEOs, soldiers and students.

Known for an energetic style that engages attendees in keynotes as well as breakouts, Wray is adept at tailoring his message to his audience, helping to achieve a meeting’s goal.

Participants leave informed and inspired by observations and practical advice drawn from his experiences.- He consistently achieves very high audience satisfaction ratings, compared to other speakers at the same event.

Presentations on Leadership

– Leadership 101:  A Refresher

– A 15-Day Quickstart in Your Leadership Development

– The 4 Essential Attributes of Successful Leadership

– Change Management 101

– The Art and Science of Sales Force Management

– 9 Things I Learned from Failure

– The Primacy of Culture
Additional Topics (Great for Client Events)

– Cyber Warfare and Cyber Security

– Piracy and Global Trade

– Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Energy

– The Federal Budget and How It Affects You

– Your US Navy:  An Owner’s Manual

– Everything You Didn’t Know About Antarctica

“Admiral Wray’s keynote exceeded expectations. We had extremely positive feedback from our clients, saying it was the best client event so far (and we’ve been in business for over 30 years). Flawless delivery, data, and expertise.”

– Amy Jones
Petso Financial

“Mr. Wray delivers an insightful, energetic, well articulated message: “if you are looking for a leader, look in the mirror”. Mr. Wray believes leadership can be cultivated in oneself, and provides a specific set of skills, traits, and practices needed to get there. The message is adaptable to any field of work, whether banking, military service, or a tech start-up; the only prerequisite is having the will to change.”

– Jim Widman


“The timing of your presentation was perfect. I have been challenged with motivating my team for results. Your presentation gave me so much to work with that I can’t thank you enough. I am looking forward to using your self-assessment and the feedback it will provide. Thank you again for your presentation. It was the shot in the arm that I know I needed.”

– Angie Chirco
SVP – Springfield  Market, Webster Bank

Admiral Wray’s Audiences Have Included Members from

– Georgetown University

– Merrill Lynch

– Morgan Stanley

–  Nataxis Global

– National Defense University

– Oppenheimer

– Petso Financial


– Schwab

– Uniformed Services Medical University

– US Naval Academy

– Webster Bank

Travels From:  Washington
$5,001 to $10,000


Following graduation from the Naval Academy, Admiral Wray spent seven years of active duty as a nuclear engineer on surface ships, carriers, and submarines.

Transferring to the reserves, he enjoyed a varied 20‐year career in business, in manufacturing, hospitality, technology, consulting, and construction. After mobilization to Baghdad in 2004, he was placed back on temporary active duty to support the transition of sovereignty back to the Iraqi government.

In 2007 he was promoted to admiral, place back on full-time duty, and assigned to Military Sealift Command in Washington (10,000 people, $3.5B rev). In 2010 he was promoted to a second star. After a short stint in Europe and Africa, he was assigned as President of the Navy’s Board of Inspection and Survey.

He has a patent, a Masters Degree from Georgetown, and has written 2 books.

His personal awards include the Distinguished Service Medal, the Legion of Merit, and the Bronze Star.

In 2013, Admiral Wray founded the Blue Star Veterans Network, providing technology and services to help aging veterans to maintain their quality of life.


Is one born a leader, or does one grow into it?  This fast-paced talk covers the last 200 years of study of the art and science of leadership.  Among others, it answers the age-old question about what leadership is, and where it comes from.

Based on his book “SaltWater Leadership,” Admiral Wray provides plenty of real-life examples, and suggestions for how we can become better leaders.

Everyone wants to be a better leader, but how best to start?

This session includes a broad list of possibilities, and provides a method for improving leadership skills in 15 days.  Further, it provides a paradigm for long-term growth in leadership potential.

In dozens of leadership circumstances, in business, in war, in the community, Admiral Wray has observed four crucial characteristics that must be present to ensure success.

In this talk, based on his varied experiences, he discusses those four attributes, and how you can implement them to ensure your leadership success.

Change is constant, and change management is a science.  Organizations who embrace change and take the steps to manage it do better than those who avoid it or stumble through it haphazardly.

In this talk, Admiral Wray teaches a semester course on change management in 45 minutes.

As a young man, Admiral Wray was a salesman, and a manager of salespeople.

In this rapid-fire talk he discusses the classic rules of management and leadership, and how they apply in the tumultuous world of sales and sales management.

In this personal talk, Admiral Wray talks candidly and earnestly about the times in his life in which he has failed, or in which his organizations have failed.  He pulls the hard-earned lessons from 40 years  of organizational management mistakes, and provides them to the audience in simple, easy-to-remember lessons.

Every organization, no matter how large or small, has a culture.  And that culture ultimately determines the organization’s success.

Based on his 40-years of experience, Admiral Wray explains what organizational culture is, how it is created, and how you can change it to achieve the success you want.

This riveting talk explains how the internet works, and how it is the newest domain for warfare between nation states, and between business competitors.
Admiral Wray’s talk combines technology, geo-political strategy, and the rules of armed conflict to set the groundwork for your understanding of cyber security.
 Warning:  be prepared to leave the room feeling less secure than when you walked in.

We watch pirate movies, and we sometimes talk like pirates, but how much do we really know about piracy in the world today?  Admiral Wray’s ships stood face-to-face with pirates.

In this entertaining talk, he’ll teach you want and need to know about piracy, and help you draw conclusions on whether you need to worry about it.

Energy runs the world, but short of flipping on the light switch, few of us understand how it’s created and distributed.

In this session, Admiral Wray dons his nuclear engineer hat to teach the audience about energy in all its forms:  nuclear, coal, gas, hydro-electric, solar, and geo-thermal.

A fun, informative session.  Mostly photos and diagrams—no equations, we promise!

We hear a lot about the federal budget, but virtually no one understands how it is created or where it goes.

Admiral Wray has fought the budget wars in Washington, and uses that experience to give a light-hearted overview of where federal dollars come from, where they go, and how we determine both.

Every hour of every day your American Navy employs hundreds of thousands of US citizens around the world, under the ocean, on the ocean, in the air, and in space.

This fast-paced talk uses 100 photos to explain to you what your Navy is doing on your behalf, and why.  A fun, entertaining overview for any group, and a client favorite.

Like most of us, Admiral Wray didn’t know nuttin’ about Antarctica.   Until he went there.

This fun talk describes the history of the continent, his visit to the South Pole, the present status of international efforts,  and the future of this mostly-unknown area of the earth.

Areas of expertise

  • Strategy & Planning
  • Leadership Development & Coaching
  • Sales Optimization
  • Change Management
  • Troubleshooting & Turnarounds
  • Global Trade
  • The Federal Budget
  • Energy
  • Antarctica
  • Cyber Warfare & Cyber Security
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