Amberly Neese

All little girls dream of what they will be when they grow up.  For some, a nurse, a vet, or an astronaut may be in their future.  For Amberly Neese, she knew she was born to encourage people.

With a talent born of a challenging childhood, Amberly has spent her adult life as a comedian, speaker, author of biblical studies, and an entertaining encourager.  Her father was in the Air Force, which brought her family from Texas to Northern AZ, and Phoenix.  Upon meeting “A really cute guy”,  she moved to California for the next chapter of life.

Her now husband Scott would follow in his fathers’ steps, entering the ministry.  Coming from very different faith journeys, as their relationship grew, so did Amberly’s faith.  “I did not grow up in a religious family at all.” – she says.   “Being Italian, my family were huge story tellers.  We laughed, we ate, we cried, and we told stories.”

A Prescott resident for the last seven years, Amberly found her way to town while directing summer programs at United Christian Youth Camp.  In the spirit of a relatable family friend, Amberly weaves personal stories and day to day experiences into messages of inspiration and growth that cause reflection, resulting in the desire to act and affect change.

As a result of alcohol abuse, there were challenges in the family dynamic growing up, and as such, Amberly honed the skills of survival and providing levity at a very young age.

“I was always the teachers pet, and the class clown.”  Adding, “In 5th grade, I was informed by a teacher to never sing out loud again …”  It wasn’t until attending Grand Canyon University, that her roommate overheard her singing and introduced her to the music department which resulted in an unexpected vocal music scholarship.

Now working as a teacher, Amberly began speaking engagements.  Her personality and candid nature were noticed and she was encouraged to add layers of comedy to her presentations.  “There are thousands of speakers, but very few do it through comedy, and even fewer do it well.” she was told.

I had the pleasure of attending a recent event that featured Amberly as the guest speaker. For those who have been to such occasions, this was a pleasant change in format that added an educational and inspirational piece elevating the already encouraging theme for the day.

The presentation wove personal tales of family observances into a story as to the strength of community, compassion, and generosity.  – It was in short, encouraging.

With the current school year, Amberly will be instructing communications at Embry Riddle Aeronautical University, which her youngest son, will attend as a freshman.

Along with the full-time gig at ERAU, a full schedule of speaking engagements is also included in her busy life during the coming year.

“I can’t sell something I don’t believe in.” referring to potential corporate speaking opportunities.  My passion is to empower people and encourage them, with a focus on pre-teens and youth.  “That is my jam.” She adds.

As to what inspires her… “when I returned home after my first major speaking engagement, I shared with my husband Scott, with a reference to  Chariots of Fire,

“When I run, I feel God’s pleasure.”

For the first time in my life I felt, and knew that I was where I was supposed to be.  I was put on earth to make a difference, to encourage people, and I feel so honored that God allows me to play in the sandboxes that I get to.”

There are people who have gifts that will touch more people than they ever know.  Amberly is one such person.  We all have that ability.  Perhaps not on stage in front of a large audience, but we all have the ability to connect on a personal level, to encourage, and build up others as we build community.

“I gravitate towards organizations that are making difference in the lives of kids.  I want to support groups that speak life and reach kids that are marginalized, whether by social circumstances, family challenges, social media conflict, or simply navigating the experience of growing up.”

It was an early morning of coffee, laughter, stories, and well, encouragement.

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