Helio Fred Garcia
For more than 35 years Helio Fred Garcia has helped leaders build trust, inspire loyalty, and lead effectively. He is a coach, counselor, teacher, writer, and speaker whose clients include some of the largest and best-known companies and organizations in the world.
He is the author, most recently, of The Power of Communication: Skills to Build Trust, Inspire Loyalty, and Lead Effectively, FT Press, 2012. That book has been on the United States Marine Corps Commandant’s Professional Reading List since 2013. It was published in Chinese in 2014 by Pearson Education Asia Ltd. in Hong Kong and Publishing House of Electronics Industry in Beijing.
Fred is president of the crisis management firm Logos Consulting Group and executive director of the Logos Institute for Crisis Management & Executive Leadership. He is based in New York and has worked with clients in dozens of countries on six continents.
Fred has 37 years of experience counseling securities firms, banks, insurance companies, specialized financial and professional service firms, corporations, not-for-profits, and governments. He has particular expertise in crisis, change, and risk management; crisis communication; international security issues; international financial transactions; corporate governance; business ethics; and executive leadership.
Fred has coached more than 350 CEOs of major corporations, plus thousands of other high-profile people in other complex fields, including doctors, scientists, lawyers, financial executives, military officers, and government officials. These executives, on six continents, were in industries as diverse as pharmaceuticals, energy, heavy manufacturing, biotechnology, computer software, financial services, law firms, advertising agencies, religious denominations, universities, and not-for-profit advocacy groups. In the 1980s he worked at leading public relations firms and served as head of public relations for a global investment bank and for a large public accounting firm. Through the 1990s Fred headed the crisis practice of a leading strategic communication consulting firm.
Fred is a highly sought keynote and motivational speaker. He has keynoted major conferences and events in the United States, South America, Europe, Africa, the Middle East, and Asia. Fred speaks about leadership communication, crisis management, business ethics, journalist/source relationships, and ways to maintain trust in difficult situations.
Fred has been on the New York University faculty since 1988. He is an adjunct professor of management in NYU’s Stern School of Business Executive MBA program, where he teaches crisis management, and where he was named Executive MBA Great Professor. He is an adjunct associate professor of management and communication in NYU’s School of Professional Studies, MS in Public Relations and Corporate Communication program, where he has received the Dean’s awards for teaching excellence, for outstanding service, and for 25 years service in teaching. In that program he teaches courses in communication strategy; in communication ethics, law, and regulation; and in crisis communication.
Fred is a Senior Fellow in the Institute of Corporate Communication at Communication University of China in Beijing. For eight years until 2015 Fred served on the leadership faculty of the Center for Security Studies of the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH), Zurich, Switzerland, where he taught an intensive seminar in the Master’s in Advanced Studies in Crisis Management and Security Policy. He has also served on the adjunct faculty of the Starr King School for the Ministry – Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, CA, where for six years he taught a seminar on religious leadership for social change. He is a frequent guest lecturer at the Wharton School of Business of the University of Pennsylvania, U.S. Defense Information School, the U.S. Marine Corps Command and Staff College, U.S. Marine Corps Officer Candidate School, the Brookings Institution, and other universities around the world.
In 2011 Fred was designated an International Distinguished Scholar at Tsinghua University in Beijing, where he gave a series of lectures and workshops on effective crisis response for graduate students and senior government, corporate, and NGO leaders. In 2015 he conducted an extensive teaching and speaking tour of China, teaching in more than a dozen leading universities, including Tsinghua University, Peking University, Shanghai Jiaotong University, Nankai University, Communication University of China, and Nanjing University, plus delivering keynotes at major corporate events.
In addition to The Power of Communication and its two companion videos (Nine Principles of Effective Leadership Communication and The Physicality of Audience Engagement, FT Press, 2012), Fred is co-author (with John Doorley) of Reputation Management: The Key to Successful Public Relations and Corporate Communication, third edition 2015; second edition 2011; first edition 2007 by Routledge, Taylor & Francis Group; Korean and Chinese translations pending, 2016. His two-volume book Crisis Communications was published by AAAA Publications in 1999. Fred is accredited by the Public Relations Society of America, and received the Society’s New York Chapter’s Philip Dorf Award for mentoring.
Fred has an MA in philosophy from Columbia University and two graduate certificates in classical Greek language and literature from the Latin/Greek Institute of the City University of New York Graduate Center. He has a BA with honors in politics and philosophy from New York University, where he was named a University Honors Scholar and was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. He received an honorary doctorate in Humane Letters from Mount Saint Mary College.
Fred’s philanthropic work is focused on multi-faith and social justice causes. He is chair of the board of trustees of the Interfaith Alliance Foundation in Washington, DC. He is an International Trustee of the World Conference of Religions for Peace, and a member of the board of trustees of the New York-based human rights organization Freedom to Marry. Fred is the immediate past chair and former member of the board of trustees of the Starr King School for the Ministry, Berkeley, CA. For ten years he served on the board of trustees of Disaster Chaplaincy Services in New York, and for three years on the board of trustees of the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley. Fred is a past chair and a former member of the board of directors of the Friends of the Neuberger Museum of Art and a former trustee of the Purchase College Foundation. He was named Westchester County (NY) Arts Patron of the Year for 2006 by the Westchester Arts Council.
Fred is also a member of the Advisory Board of The Banyan Project, a group of senior journalists, technologists, researchers, strategists and advocates for a stronger democracy. Banyan aims to strengthen democracy through high-quality, web-based journalism that engages the civic energy of less-than-affluent everyday citizens — people who are the bread and butter of American life but are ill-served by mainstream journalism and too often out of the public spotlight.