Since the release of CRAZY: A Father’s Search Through America’s Mental Health Madness in 2006, Pete has been a much sought after inspirational speaker.

In 2015, he reached a milestone, having spoken in all but two U.S. states as well as to officials in five foreign nations. He has testified or appeared before the U.S. Congress five times to tell his story and advocate for changes in our mental health care system.Author Pete Earley

As a life-long member of the National Alliance on Mental Illness, Pete has spoken several times at NAMI’s national convention and at many of its individual state conventions. He has been a featured speaker at conventions held by Mental Health America, the American Psychiatric Association, The National Council for Behavioral Health, The American Correctional Association, and CIT International. He has spoken at fund raising dinners for numerous community mental health providers, to state hospital organizations, housing authorities, state bar associations, and has delivered Grand Rounds in teaching hospitals. More than a dozen colleges have heard him lecture.

While Pete can speak about any of his books, his primary focus has been a speech called CRAZY, after his bestselling book. Using his family’s story and the research that he conducted inside the Miami-Dade County jail, Pete explains why jails and prisons should not be used as asylums and why programs such as CIT, Mental Health Courts, Jail Diversion and Re-Entry programs can save tax-dollars and lives.


Here’s Pete’s speech about our CRAZY mental health system:

In February 2016, Pete announced that he was introducing a new speech entitled Lessons I’ve Learned: The Key To Recovery Is Engagement.

Here is a five minute snippet.


In his new speech, Pete talks about what he has learned dealing with his adult son, Kevin, who today is in recovery and works as a peer-to-peer specialist after a rocky journey that included being hospitalized five times, being arrested and being shot twice with a Taser by police. Pete is so excited about introducing this speech that for a short period he will cut his normal speaking fee in half for any mental health group that invites him back to speak after having heard him previously.

You can read more about Pete’s speech here.

If you wish to inquire about Pete’s availability and speaking fee, contact Pete at [email protected]

Pete’s son, Kevin, also is available for limited speaking engagements. In his presentations, he talks about what caused him to finally accept his illness, how he took charge of his recovery and his work as a peer-to-peer counselor.

Speeches scheduled for 2018

February 11, St. Louis, Missouri, Provident gala, Four Seasons Hotel St. Louis.

April 4th, Falls Church, Virginia , grand rounds at Virginia Mental Health Institute. (THIS EVENT IS NOT OPEN TO THE PUBLIC)

April 19th, NYAPRS,  Annual Executive Seminar, Albany, New York.

April 23/25,  Washington D.C. NATCOM, national convention of the National Council for Behavioral Health

May 4,  Denver, Colorado, Colorado Collaborative Justice Conference (CCJC).

May 5, Butte County, California, “Caregiving and the Mentally Ill” NAMI conference.

May 16, Laguna Beach, California, details to come.

August 20, Kansas City, Mo., Tri-County Mental Health Services banquet.

September 12, North Bethesda, Maryland, AMHSA, The Role of the Fairth-Based Community as Bridge Builders to the Treatment Community for People with SMI

September 20, Lakeland, Florida, Polk County Commissioner meeting on behavior health.

September 21, NYC, Convening on the Decriminalization of Serious Mental Illness, Greenburger Center for Social Justice

October 5, 17th Annual Legislative Breakfast from 8:30am until 10:30am at the Mayfair Farms in West Orange, NJ. Mental Health Association of Essex and Morris.

October 17, Blacksburg, Virginia CIT conference. 

October 22, Ohio’s 3rd Stepping Up Initiative, details to come

October 25, Montana State Conference on Mental Illness, Helena, Montana

October 26, American Psychiatric Nurses Association, Columbus, Ohio

October 30, Baton Rouge, La. Louisiana Mental Health Summit, Sen. Bill Cassidy.

November 2, East Hartford, CT, Annual Statewide CIT Conference.

November 7, NYC, Fountain House forum on asylums.

November 29th, NYC, Temple Shaaray Tefila

December 4th, Boston, Mass. Cambridge NAMI