Chris Bashinelli | National Geographic Explorer & TV Host, United Nations Moderator, Arab-American Diversity Speaker and Expert on Human Connection & Humanity in Business

Chris Bashinelli

National Geographic Explorer & TV Host, United Nations Moderator, Arab-American Diversity Speaker and Expert on Human Connection & Humanity in Business

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Chris Bashinelli

Chris Bashinelli, better known as “Bash”, was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York to Lebanese and Italian-American parents. After a decade-long acting career including an appearance on the HBO hit television show, The Sopranos, Bash decided to follow his real passion - using media to build bridges between cultures. He now traverses the globe from Uganda to Haiti as Host of Bridge the Gap, a television series featured on PBS and the National Geographic Channel, where he experience’s life in someone else’s shoes.

A celebrated Diversity and Inclusion speaker, Bash has traveled the world for more than a decade sharing a message of empathy and understanding everywhere from Fortune 500 Companies, to inside prison walls, to the United Nations General Assembly Hall. His world view was shaped on his childhood “Stoop” where his friends shared a combined total of thirteen nationalities. He has shared the stage with Stevie Wonder, the UN Secretary General and his mentor – Dr. Jane Goodall.

After studying Anthropology in East Africa at 20 years old, Chris Bashinelli returned home to discover his father had been diagnosed with terminal cancer. The death of his father sent him on an international quest to better understand the human condition and the universal qualities that lead to a happy, meaningful life. Bash has lived with nomads in Mongolia, worked with suicide prevention activists in Pine Ridge and Sumo wrestled the heaviest Japanese human being in recorded history. Through one of kind stories of adventure and authentic moments of human connection, Bash truly bridges the gap between self and
other, helping us recognize our shared humanity.

Bash has spoken around the world - from TEDx, to Abu Dhabi, to Azerbaijan, at multi-million dollar corporations and Ivy League Universities. At 24 years old he became one of the youngest moderators in the history of the United Nations. Bash is a National Geographic Explorer, a UN Moderator, an Eagle Scout and has interviewed some of Time Magazine’s 100 Most Influential People on the Planet.

“From Haiti to the Pine Ridge Reservation, I have met countless individuals living in incredibly difficult conditions who are often more content and inspired than people I know in far “better off” conditions. The common thread many of these individuals share is their concern for others, often even above their own welfare. Through these experiences I am reminded that happiness is a state of mind, not a state of the external world. Perhaps by walking in other people’s shoes and gaining a glimpse into their experience, we can tap into a deeper wisdom that will inspire each of us to live more conscious lives and reach our full potential.”

Chris Bashinelli
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Chris Bashinelli
Featured Keynote Programs

The Power of Human Connection – Embracing Diversity, Building Stronger Teams

Embark with Bash on an international adventure, from the sweeping grasslands of Mongolia to the remote hillsides of China, coupled with stunning video footage and thought provoking exercises, where we learn to truly embrace diversity and harness the collective power of our shared humanity. 

It is only when every single team member, from the office manager to the CEO, feels safe to bring their whole, most authentic selves to work every day, that our organization will realize its full potential. So long as anyone feels they must hide who they are, we leave untapped resources on the table – negatively impacting our bottom line. Embracing the powerful metaphor of his childhood “Stoop” in Brooklyn, where his friends shared a combined total of thirteen nationalities, Bash reminds us that it is only when our uniqueness is celebrated and all perspectives equally welcome, that we can truly tap into the power of human connection.


·  Diversity, Equity and Inclusion within a simple, powerful framework.
·  How to encourage every employee to be their authentic selves.
·  How to create a safe, inclusive environment in the workplace.
·  The benefits of creating a “Stoop” with our teams.
· How to build lifelong bridges between cultures.

Creating a Culture of Trust & Empathy – The Superpower to True Business Growth

In this flagship keynote, Bash shares the profound method he’s used to build trust and forge lifelong friendships around the world as a National Geographic Explorer. From living with nomads in Mongolia, to Sumo-wrestling Japan’s heaviest human being of all time, Bash shares the superpower for true business growth in engaging, humorous and practical terms. 

Without trust, business suffers profoundly - with it, our people and our company thrive. When our clients feel on a core level that we have their best interest in mind, they will be inspired to work with us, and business will flourish. As we live and work from a place of empathy we will naturally create an inclusive culture that inspires teammates to want to work together towards our mission and attract clients who trust us with their business.


·  Discover our “In” – Bash’s trademarked secret to true human connection.
·  Why focusing strictly on our bottom line undercuts our clients’ trust in us.
·  The short and long term business benefits of emotional intelligence.
·  How to create an inclusive culture where teammates are inspired.
· Why deep trust is the foundation to long term business growth.

Inspirational Leadership – Reignite Employee Inspiration & Bring Your Best Self Everyday

Join Bash on an international adventure, from the distant hilltops of Western Hunan, to the iconic Mongolian steppe, where we learn, through the power of story, that the most effective way to lead others is to become our best selves, each and every day. Pulling from his most memorable experiences in travels to over 40 countries, Bash shows that it is only because of challenge, not in spite of it, that we can realize our full potential – the space between who we are and who we can be. 

When our leaders truly embrace empathy and show an unwavering commitment to realize their full potential, the result is inspiration. Leaders inspire us by what they say and do, but perhaps more than anything else – by who they are. In this revolutionary keynote we’ll explore how the results of influence are often short term and self serving, whereas the impact of inspiration lasts a lifetime. 


·  “Inspiration vs. Influence” – Why inspiration always outperforms influence.
·  Re-Ignite your team’s passion for your mission and purpose.
·  Inspire your team by becoming the best version of yourself.
·  Embrace challenge as a means to realize your potential.
·  Harness the magnetic power of selflessness.

The Power of Mental Wellness – Mindfulness, Mental Health & Creating a Healthy Workforce

We are working harder, under more pressure, and for longer hours than ever before – but without a mindful approach to work and life, one that values our well being as well as the bottom line – burnout and turnover are inevitable. Pulling from more than a decade of in-depth mindfulness and mediation studies, Bash shares how to incorporate positive mental health strategies into our work and life in order to increase productivity, profit and happiness. 

Colored by Bash’s extraordinary adventures around the world as a National Geographic Explorer, this keynote brings to life the core lessons he’s learned to create a healthy workforce in fun, engaging and practical ways. No matter what our organization is struggling with – employee retention, company layoffs, or economic downturns – it can fuel our path to a wiser, more caring and more innovative culture.


·  Mental Health tools to increase happiness, productivity and profit.
·  The power of mindfulness to reduce stress and increase concentration.
·  How to create work/life boundaries that empower joy & productivity.
· How embracing challenge gives rise to real innovation.
· The scientific link between “Happiness” and “Trust”.

Chris Bashinelli
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