“Insightful, inspiring, powerful – thank you for presenting the keynote session at the 26th Association of Outdoor Recreation and Education Conference. Attendees were engrossed – a perfectly delivered presentation through vivid images, video, and a dynamic speaking. Your talk was able to transcend, literally, a global message and to a rapt audience who reflected on how they, too, will pursue their own “additive adventures”. Thank you!”SEE MORE TESTIMONIALS
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Majka Burhardt teaches teams how to build unusual connections with passion. As an author, professional climber, filmmaker, and entrepreneur, Majka has spent two decades exploring the globe—usually by hand and foot. Her stories of taking chances, thriving in uncertainty, and achieving results have electrified audiences worldwide. They emerge un-stuck from a traditional model of change and risk, embracing unchartered territory to maximize outcomes. She is the author of books Coffee Story: Ethiopia and Vertical Ethiopia: Climbing Toward Possibility in the Horn of Africa, and Executive Producer of the 2010 film, Waypoint Namibia, Producer of 2016 film Namuli, and the Founder of LEGADO.
Majka gives keynotes and seminars at tradeshows, conferences, and company events around the world. She draws upon her 23 years of experience producing multi-stage international ventures focused on current issues of cultural and global significance. Majka engages audiences in new interpretations of leadership, teamwork, and global capacity building. She will have your team foregoing traditional safety, following their new intuition, and succeeding via complexity within ten minutes of her keynote. Majka’s clients include a diverse group of organizations and companies including Starbucks, Google, Nespresso, the Utah Council for Citizen Diplomacy, the Commonwealth Club, Banff Film and Book Festival, Colorado Environmental Coalition, universities and colleges throughout North America, and many others.
Speaking Bio, Extended
Majka Burhardt has a passion for creating unusual connections. As a professional climber, conservation entrepreneur, author, and filmmaker, Majka has spent decades exploring the globe—usually by hand and foot. Her stories of taking chances, embracing risk, and living with uncertainty have electrified audiences worldwide. She specializes in pushing them to think differently about their own life choices and risk profiles. As a keynote speaker and writer Majka champions “Additive Adventure”—when adventure goes beyond exploration to cultural and environmental connections that create a larger conversation of singular and collective human meaning.
Majka has over 20 years of experience leading multi-stage international ventures focused on current issues of cultural and environmental significance spanning Africa, Europe, South and North America. Majka is the Founder and Executive Director of Legado, an international organization working to protect the world’s most threatened mountain ecosystems by empowering the people who call them home. She founded Legado to address the growing need to create conservation solutions that put mountain people at the center of preserving the world’s most biodiverse mountains— the water towers of our world. As an author, Majka’s first book Vertical Ethiopia: Climbing Toward Possibility in the Horn of Africa (2008) was short‑listed for the Banff Book Award. Her second book, Coffee Story: Ethiopia, was released in August 2011 and featured by Starbucks in 2013, and re-released as a second edition in 2018. In 2010, Majka produced Waypoint Namibia and the film was featured at international film festivals and shown on NBC’s Universal Sports. Majka was nominated for an EPIC Emerging Artist Award for her work as the Executive Producer. Her 2016 film Namuli was released to acclaim at over 50 international film festivals and across the US on PBS. Namuli tells the story of Majka’s climbing and conservation research Mount Namuli, Mozambique’s second highest mountain and a critical target for conservation in southeast Africa— and of the origins of Legado.
As a speaker, Majka engages audiences in new interpretations of leadership, teamwork, and global capacity building. Majka presents keynotes and seminars at tradeshows, conferences, and company events around the world. Majka’s clients include a diverse group of organizations and companies including Google, Nespresso, the Utah Council for Citizen Diplomacy, the Commonwealth Club, Banff Film and Book Festival, Colorado Environmental Coalition, universities and colleges throughout North America, and many others. Her work and projects have been featured in The Economist, Outside Magazine, The Weather Channel, NPR and many other major international media outlets.
Majka’s articles have appeared in publications including Afar, Men’s Health, Skiing Magazine, Backpacker, Patagonia, Alpinist, Women’s Adventure, The Explorers Journal, and Climbing, where her column “Whipped,” ran for six years.
Majka is a professional climber and ambassador with top outdoor company Patagonia. She is an American Mountain Guides Association Rock Guide and also former two-term member of the organizations’ Board of Directors. Majka is a Mulago Foundation Henry Arnhold Fellow for her work in conservation entrepreneurship and graduated from Princeton University cum laude and received a MFA in Creative Writing from the Warren Wilson Program for Writers.
Curious how to say her name? It’s “My-ka.”
Photo credit: James Q Martin