Keynote Speaker

Keynote Speaker – 2023

Speaker Keynote Bio: Sylvester “Syl” Neal

Kiwanis International President 2010-2011

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Sylvester Neal

Sylvester Neal

Mr. Sylvester Neal, formerly of Auburn, WA, recently moved to Austin TX to be closer to his family. He served as President of Kiwanis International in 2010-2011 and had previously served a three-year term as a Trustee to the Kiwanis International Board.


Syl belonged to the Kiwanis Club of the Valley in Auburn since 2003.  He is a former member of the Kiwanis Clubs of Anchorage and Fairbanks AK, and was recognized as Kiwanian of the Year four times.  He served as Governor of the Pacific Northwest District in 2002-03. He holds Life Member status in Kiwanis International and is a Diamond Level Hixson Fellow of the Kiwanis International Foundation, and a Diamond Level Osborne Fellow in the Kiwanis Foundation of Canada.


Before joining the International Board, Sylvester served on International Committees for Youth Services, Children’s Miracle Network Telethon, Membership Diversity, and New Club Building and Membership Growth across North America.


Mr. Neal is a retired Alaska State Fire Marshal.  In addition to his involvement in Kiwanis, he has chaired the Alaska State Fire Commission on Fire Prevention and Control and served on the board of Alaskans for Drug Free Youth and community college board.  He has also held volunteer positions with the United Way, Special Olympics, and State Fallen Firefighters Memorial.  He is an ordained deacon in his church and received the Citizen Volunteer Award from the Anchorage School District.


Known for his engaging persona where everyone is his friend, Sylvester is an inspiring and motivational speaker.

Kiwanis is a global organization of volunteers dedicated to changing the world one child and one community at a time.