Sebastian Junger: Hachette Speakers Bureau

Sebastian Junger

Award-Winning Journalist & Best-Selling Author
(The Perfect Storm, WAR)

Sebastian Junger is the internationally acclaimed, best-selling author of WAR, The Perfect Storm, A Death in Belmont and Fire. As a contributing editor to Vanity Fair and as a contributor to ABC News, he has covered major international news stories and has been awarded the National Magazine Award and an SAIS Novartis Prize for Journalism.

At the podium, Junger engages audiences with a powerful, emotionally compelling and vivid portrait of the impact of war. He draws significant parallels between the battlefield and Corporate America, providing important lessons that offer companies a tangible edge over their competition. Junger shares personal anecdotes and direct experiences from the trenches of Afghanistan. A witness to some of the most heroic, disturbing and life-affirming events that represent the conflicted nature of war, Junger explores the emotional experience of combat and the impact of war on our everyday lives. Audiences will be riveted by Junger’s harrowing accounts of war and thoroughly motivated by his prolific metaphors that instill teamwork, crush the competition and earn respect.

Junger’s critically acclaimed documentary Restrepo, co-directed with photojournalist Tim Hetherington, was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Documentary and received the 2010 Grand Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival. Restrepo documents the year that Junger and Hetherington were embedded with Battle Company of the 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team, in the remote and heavily contested Korengal Valley of eastern Afghanistan. Reporting on the war from the soldiers’ perspective, Junger had spent weeks at a time at a remote outpost that saw more combat than almost anywhere else in the entire country. This resulted in his best-seller WAR, as well as Restrepo. Tim Hetherington was later killed while covering the war in Libya.

Junger returned back to Park City, Utah to debut his latest project, Which Way is the Front Line From Here? The Life and Time of Tim Hetherington, with high commendations at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival. Junger created this film in honor of Hetherington’s original vision to capture stories that would broaden viewers’ perceptions of war, and serve as a remembrance for his humanity and courage. Realizing the dangerous risks frequently taken by freelance photographers and reporters, Junger was motivated to start Reporters Instructed in Saving Colleagues (RISC), an organization that provides medical training for journalists in war zones, to commemorate the death of the acclaimed photographer. “Tim wanted to change the world,” Junger recalls, “But he also wanted the world to change him” (New York Times).”

Junger became a fixture in the international media when, as a first-time author, he commanded the New York Times best-seller list for more than three years with The Perfect Storm, which became a major motion picture starring George Clooney.

His reporting on Afghanistan in 2000, profiling Northern Alliance leader Ahmed Shah Massoud, became the subject of the National Geographic documentary Into the Forbidden Zone. In 2001, his expertise and experience reporting in Afghanistan led him to cover the war as a special correspondent for ABC News and Vanity Fair. His work has also been published in Harper’s, The New York Times Magazine, National Geographic Adventure, Outside, and Men’s Journal. He has reported on the LURD besiegement of Monrovia in Liberia, human rights abuses in Sierra Leone, war crimes in Kosovo, the peacekeeping mission in Cyprus, wildfire in the American West, guerilla war in Afghanistan, and hostage-taking in Kashmir. He has worked as a freelance radio correspondent during the war in Bosnia.

Junger is a native New Englander and a graduate of Wesleyan University. Attracted since childhood to “extreme situations and people at the edges of things,” Junger worked as a high-climber for tree removal companies. After a chainsaw injury, he decided to focus on journalism, primarily writing about people with dangerous jobs, from fire-fighting to commercial fishing (which led, of course, to The Perfect Storm).

In 1998 Junger established The Perfect Storm Foundation, a non-profit organization that provides educational opportunities for children of people in the maritime professions.

Junger lives in New York City and on Cape Cod.

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  • The Front Lines of History: 20 Years of Reporting from Around the World
  • WAR: A Year with One Platoon in the Most Dangerous Valley in Afghanistan
  • Leadership in Action: Lessons from Combat for Corporate Life

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