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John Deverell CBE

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Leadership, motivational and management speaker, John is an international expert helping companies to deal with crisis and reputational risk. He spent two years as Head of Global Security with Invensys plc, a FTSE 100 global technology company. In this role he resolved many crises worldwide and ensured business continuity in the Middle East throughout the “Arab Spring”. John has recently written for national newspapers, including The Times and Guardian, on subjects such as risk and the importance of dialogue.

Much of John’s earlier career was spent with the British Army, including several years with the Foreign Office as a military diplomat. He worked in the Middle East for a decade in a variety of roles. He was Defence Attache in Saudi Arabia and in Yemen where he helped avoid outright war through his initiatives with local forces against terrorism. As a Brigadier General he was deputy to the American commander of the Iraq Survey Group where he was instrumental in disproving the pre-war intelligence on WMD – as he later explained on the Panorama TV programme. He also advised senior Libyans on how they could benefit from giving up WMD. He helped Colombians in their fight against narco-terrorism.

John’s final tour before being headhunted out of the Army by Invensys plc was as the only British government servant operating and living full-time in the Occupied Palestinian Territories. At the forefront of British & U.S. efforts to reform Palestinian security capability, he improved life for the Palestinians, encouraged their moderates and helped give confidence to Israelis that they could live safely alongside a Palestinian state as the basis for a Two-State Solution. John worked closely with Quartet Representative Tony Blair and with U.S. National Security Adviser General Jim Jones. Using relationships he built with senior representatives on all sides, he achieved concessions from the Israelis and assisted Palestinian economic opportunities in the West Bank.

During his military service, John led soldiers at every level from four-man patrols to a Division comprising nearly a third of the British Army. He operated in the jungle, the desert, tanks, infantry, submarines and Special Forces and also as a U.N. Military Observer in Former Yugoslavia during fierce fighting. He is a linguist. He was awarded the OBE for his leadership of his battalion on operations and the CBE for his work in fighting for better quality of life for his soldiers and for his initiatives in Homeland Security.

John is an accomplished speaker for conferences and meetings and key inspirational themes include:
• Effective leadership
• Teamwork
• Planning & Preparation
• Stress Management
• Security
• Communication
• Risk
• Change Management

“Thank you so much for taking time out from your busy life to give us such a fascinating talk yesterday. The many supporters I spoke with were full of admiration for both the content and the delivery of your talk and everyone thoroughly enjoyed the occasion. Many thanks indeed for your star role.” Sir Guy Acland, County Chairman, ABF

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