It's not exactly a beginning that inspires visions of greatness.
One of his first jobs: flipping burgers at age 17 for Dick's Drive In, to buy diapers for his new daughter. Followed by stand-up comedy in dark Seattle bars. And reporting traffic on "Kickin' Country Radio."
About 10 years later, Luke Burbank can be heard on nationwide radio every week, and as a radio journalist, he's had wide-ranging reporting opp's in New York, Washington, Miami, and LA--from seedy truck stops to the halls of Congress. He's covered Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, and Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert. House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi knows him by name.
His additional radio credits include freelancing for National Public Radio's "All Things Considered," "This American Life," and "Morning Edition," as well as "The Bryant Park Project," KUOW's "The Conversation" and "Rewind," followed by NPR's "Day to Day", and then as the long-term sub for Peter Segal's multi-million-listener-strong "Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me!" quiz show.
And currently, Luke, whose voice one reporter said has the "wry tone and mellow cadence of that cool-kid charmer you might have known in high school," hosts "Too Beautiful to Live," a nighttime radio show described as "eclectic, arch, highly literate, and committed to exploring everything that comes to mind----from Beyoncé to the troubled banking system."
So how does a former teenage dad, raised on a religious commune...already boasting more implausible career moves and employment high wire acts by his early 30s than most of us experience in a lifetime....become a national sensation....in about a decade?
That's what he's here to tell you about.
Luke learned early on that trying to be anyone else, or fit into a mold, is personal and professional suicide. "When I became a supposedly-serious reporter, I thought I would have to rein in my Burbankness. But I found out that being Luke Burbank is the main thing I have going for me."
That, and being unreasonable. When life hands you something "unreasonable" (a global recession, a layoff when you're a star performer, a kid to care for when you're still a kid), Luke's success proves, time after time, that ya gotta reinvent yourself---get out there on the edge-and take some real risks.
Being YOU is the best thing you've got going. In these challenging times, you've never mattered more. Not in some vain, the-world-revolves-around-you kind of way...but in the what-gifts-and-brilliance-can-I-bring-to-the-world kind of way.
It's time to find out what to do when your "reasonable" life becomes unreasonable.
In this fun, funny and poignant keynote, he'll shares his crazy stories with a style that's Pure Luke...and in a way that you can apply his lessons to whatever your situation may be. You'll be inspired to squeeze a bunch of lemons from your "lemonade," bring more of YOUR genius into the world, and see the value in being unreasonable.
And who knows---maybe you'll even land your own radio show.
"I was skeptical at first because I didn't know his work," said Peter Sagal, the "Wait Wait ...Don't Tell Me " show host says about Burbank substituting for him when he took a leave from his show to finish writing a book. "But everyone kept vouching for him and we had him on as a panelist, and he totally won me over. He's funny, he's fast, he's interesting and he's fearless about putting himself out there. He's also one of those people, I think, who is able to be genuine in a very artificial environment."
--Peter Sagal, NPR Quiz Show Host
Travels from: Seattle
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