Serving, Sharing, Supporting

What is the
NSA Foundation?

The NSA Foundation is the philanthropic arm of the National Speakers Association and serves to help those members and families of our NSA Community, as well as those in need in our larger global community. It is devoted to upholding the spirit of serving, sharing, and supporting embodied by our founder Cavett Robert, CSP, CPAE. The Foundation is able to act on behalf of our members to do something that comes naturally in the speaking profession – helping others.

Play Video

How did the Foundation Get its Start?

The NSA Foundation was established in 1983 by Founder and Chairman Emeritus Nido Qubein, CSP, CPAE and the NSA Board of Directors. It is governed by the NSA Foundation Board of Trustees. Specific awards are reviewed by the Scholarship, Professional Speakers Benefit Fund (PSBF), and Art Berg Fund Grant committees under the guidelines established for each program. Most contributions to the NSA Foundation are tax deductible; however, contributors are encouraged to consult with a tax professional regarding any contributions/donations made.

NSA Foundation Serving. Sharing. Supporting. logo

Giving Back

How is the Foundation helping NSA members and the public?

Today, the Foundation serves members and the public through:

  • Financial help (PSBF) for NSA members who have suffered either personal health or natural disaster emergencies;
  • Scholarships for both undergraduate and graduate students with an interest in public speaking;
  • Grants (Art Berg) to help charitable organizations communicate through technology; and
  • Grants to support a charity each year in the city of our annual Convention.
Disaster Relief Application

If you and your family have been adversely impacted by a natural disaster; wildfire, tornado, hurricane or other extreme weather, the NSA Foundation may be able to help. The Foundation’s Disaster Relief program offers $1,000 in immediate assistance for members who find themselves relocated and/or experiencing a hardship due to loss of power, flooding or other complications. To be considered for this relief, please download and complete the application and email it to

If your circumstances are dire the Professional Speakers Benefit Fund (PSBF) Committee may be able to provide further assistance.

Email Janette at to keep us updated on your safety even if you do not need additional assistance. We want you to know the Foundation, funded by donations from the NSA membership, is here for you. #NSACares!

Please note that by completing the application and/or contacting Janette, you are opting in to have your personal information shared with the Disaster Relief Committee.

Professional Speakers Benefit Fund (PSBF)

What is the PSBF?

The Professional Speakers Benefit Fund (PSBF) provides financial assistance during serious health emergencies, catastrophic loss from natural disasters such as Hurricane Katrina, and when long-term members have outlived their assets. Over $500,000 has been given to our members who met the guidelines since the first assistance provided to an NSA member back in the late 1970’s, before the Foundation was even established.

Elderly woman gratefully receiving a large check for $10,000 from the NSA Foundation

History of PSBF

In 1977, several CPAEs heard that a highly respected speaker and his wife were facing severe financial difficulty due to the speaker’s prolonged battle with Alzheimer’s. The CPAEs decided they wanted to DO something in addition to BEING members of the elite Speaker Hall of Fame®. As word spread, they began sending checks in various amounts that were forwarded to the speaker’s wife. The speaker was none other than Frank Bettger author of bestselling book, How I Raised Myself from Failure to Success in Selling. Both he and his wife were feeling the weight of medical bills and outliving their saved assets. When Frank passed away in 1981, his wife still faced a financial challenge, but because Frank had been in the insurance business, the proceeds from his insurance provided her the income she needed. When Mrs. Bettger passed away, unknown to the CPAEs who had helped them when they needed it most, she had made the necessary changes to her will to make sure the money the CPAEs had sent her was to be repaid in full.

Realizing that other members might one day be in a similar situation, a group of CPAEs suggested using these repaid funds to form a Foundation. Thus, the Professional Speakers Benefit Fund (PSBF), operating as the NSA Foundation, was born and later transformed into the 501(c)(3) organization known today, operating as the fully-funded charitable arm of the Association.

Since that initial act of generosity, the PSBF has helped hundreds of members facing financial, health, or natural disaster emergencies:

“I was resting on our family couch fighting my prolonged illness, when I heard my wife crying in the kitchen. I thought, ‘What now?’ I asked her ‘What’s wrong?’ She came into the family room and showed me your letter and the PSBF check. We both cried tears of joy, of course.”
— Professional Speakers Benefit Fund Recipient

“Thank you for your generous support during these challenging times. Just when one loses focus & questions man, there is a ray of hope which restores faith, belief and hope in each other. NSA, thank you for being that ray of hope. I am truly grateful and will never forget the support.”
— Calvin Mackie, Harvey, LA, Disaster Relief Recipient

“I consider myself one of NSA’s biggest cheerleaders, endlessly applauding my speaker colleagues to reach their highest good in the industry. With my recent brain surgery and the generous support of the Foundation, now I’m the one being cheered on by hundreds of my “family” members. During this little interruption in my life, I’m grateful beyond words for the assistance… I love NSA!”
— Nancy Vogl, Traverse City, MI

Guidelines for the PSBF Grant

Members can request assistance themselves or other members can make requests on their behalf.

  • Any member of the Association, who has been in good standing for at least three years, may be eligible for a grant.
  • Any former member of the Association, who was in good standing for at least five years, may be eligible for a grant.
  • The Committee Chair must personally contact the applicant or, if that is not possible, the closest relative or caregiver, to determine need and circumstances.

If you would like to submit an application for a PSBF grant, download the Professional Speakers Benefit Fund (PSBF) application form (PDF).

For more information on the PSBF Grant, please email

Please note by contacting Jessi Leonardo you are opting in to have your personal information provided to the PSBF Committee.

NSA Student Scholarships

Now Accepting Scholarship Applications

The NSA Foundation is pleased to announce that the application period for the Fall 2021 term has opened.  Each year, up to six $5,000 scholarships have been awarded to a student who meets the criteria below:

  • Be a full-time student, as defined by your institution, from a four-year accredited college or university.
  • Have at least junior status at the start of the Fall 2021 term or be working on a graduate degree.

The deadline for submissions is Sunday, May 18, 2021 at 11:50 PM PT. For more information, contact

About the Six Scholarships


Since 1989, the NSA Foundation has provided annual scholarships to students who have at least a junior status or working on a graduate degree with demonstrated ability in public speaking. Or students who wish to use and/or pursue a career in public speaking.  To date, the Foundation has awarded over half-a-million dollars to help students achieve their educational goals while, at the same time, giving back to the communities where they attend class, work and live.

Each of the six scholarships is named in honor of a renowned NSA member who was also a thought-leader, entrepreneur, philanthropist, mentor and/or a nationally recognized speaker.

Nido Qubein Scholarship in honor of NSA’s largest philanthropists, a past-president of NSA, President of High Point University and an entrepreneur. In awarding this scholarship, special consideration is given to those applicants who show a commitment to philanthropy, education, entrepreneurial spirit and diversity.

Jeanne Robertson Scholarship in honor of NSA past-president and nationally recognized humorist. In awarding this scholarship, special consideration is given to those applicants who show an interest in education, entrepreneurial spirit and diversity.

Robert Henry Scholarship given in memory of NSA past-president who established the NSA Foundation. In awarding this scholarship, special consideration is given to those students who help those less fortunate or who have need for financial assistance.

Cavett Robert Scholarship given in memory of founder of NSA, who was an attorney and philanthropist. In awarding this scholarship, special consideration is given to those students seeking advance degrees and who have provided service to their community.

Bill Gove Scholarship given in memory of NSA’s first president who influenced and mentored many professional speakers. In awarding this scholarship, special consideration is given to those students interested in education and mentoring.

Earl Nightingale Scholarship given in memory of an NSA innovator who made adult learning by audio a new standard worldwide. In awarding this scholarship, special consideration is given to those students who show an aptitude for education and innovation.

For more information, please review our FAQ worksheet or contact

Art Berg Fund Grant

History of Art Berg Fund Grant


The NSA Foundation is pleased to announce that the application period for the Art Berg Grant has opensaned. Each year, one $4,000 grant is awarded to a 501(c)3 organization needing financial assistance in developing and/or deploying a technology-related project that will enhance communication for the benefit of the clients they serve. To be eligible, the organization must:

  • Have an NSA member who is actively involved in the organization as a member of the board, standing committee, and/or regular volunteer.
  • Be recognized by the IRS as a 501(c)3.

The deadline for submissions is Sunday, May 18, 2021 at 11:50 PM PT.  For more information, contact

About the Art Berg Fund Grant

The National Speakers Association (NSA) Foundation serves members and the public through various scholarships and grants. One such grant, named in honor of the late Art Berg—world-class wheelchair athlete and motivational speaker—was created to assist NSA members of a 501(c)(3) organization with funding technology-related projects that enhance communication.

Each year, one grant is awarded in the amount of $4,000. Examples of eligible projects include:

  • Creating and distributing free audio packages to the blind.
  • Providing software and/or hardware to after-school programs.
  • Developing a wireless project to connect at-risk children and/or their parents to 911 hotlines.
  • Establishing educational programs in sign language to parents/siblings of deaf children.
  • Funding research to identify ways volunteers can use technology to assist the elderly demographic.

Art Berg Fund Grant Recipients

  • 2020 – SPARK, Eastern Tennessee Technology Access Center
  • 2019 - Global Service Initiative, Delta Upsilon Fraternity
  • 2018 - Summer Santa, Inc.
  • 2017 - Empowering Lives and Building Foundations
  • 2016 - The Association for Applied and Therapeutic Humor
  • 2015 - The Kugler Education Fund at South Africa Partners
  • 2014 - The Coach Initiative, Inc.
  • 2013 - Together We Can Change the World
  • 2012 - ShareTheCaregiving™, Inc.
  • 2011 - Second Wind Dreams ®
  • 2010 - Impact on Education
  • 2009 - Metrocrest Social Services
  • 2008 - Recording for the Blind and Dyslexic
  • 2007 - Royce Arbour, Inc. – Hands on Help for Management
  • 2006 - Association for Applied and Therapeutic Humor
  • 2005 - American Immigration Law Foundation

“The support of NSA’s Art Berg Fund Grant will bring enormous benefits to the children and families of A.V. Bukani Primary School in a rural South African township. Now, the entire community will have greater access to books, something the wonderful people of this community so richly deserve.”

—Eileen Kugler, Trustee of The Kugler Education Fund at South Africa Partners

Community Grants

In 2014, The NSA Foundation Board of Trustees decided that since our Foundation had been so richly blessed over the years, we needed to “practice what we preached” to our members about being more philanthropic and continuously giving to the Foundation. A decision was made to provide a grant of $10,000 to a charity located in the city where the annual Convention of NSA was being held. That first year, our Convention was in San Diego, CA. Several charitable non-profit organizations in that area were selected and reviewed. The decision was made to provide our first grant to the The Warrior Foundation, a local organization, staffed and managed completely by volunteers who used 100% of the money they were given to provide aid to military veterans in the San Diego area.

  • 2014 San Diego, California, The Warrior Foundation
  • 2015 Washington, D.C., Capital Area Food Bank
  • 2016 Phoenix, Arizona, AZ Maggie's Place
  • 2017 Orlando, Florida, Edgewood Children’s Ranch, Inc.
  • 2018 Summer Santa, Inc.
  • 2019 Tennyson Center for Children
NSA Foundation Event

Each year at the annual NSA Convention, an event is held to raise awareness and funds for the NSA Foundation. This event is jam-packed with exciting performances and heartfelt stories from past grant recipients. This is also the time where the community grant is awarded to support a charity in the city of our annual convention. When you attend the Foundation event, you get the best in education and entertainment as well as the satisfaction of knowing you are supporting a worthy cause. Look for up-to-date information, and registration details for the next event soon.

Layer 60

How can I request help from the NSA Foundation?

Many people find asking for personal help to be difficult, but it is important to remember that all of us know people in NSA where help is needed. Most of us know personally what it is like to experience difficult times. The Foundation exists to serve our members; to be there for them when a devastating natural disaster strikes or they face a serious health issue; to help the children of our members or young people they know who could benefit from a college scholarship; to provide funds for a nonprofit organization who needs help making technological improvements; and, to provide a grant to a charity in the location of our Convention each year.

Does one of these scenarios apply to you or someone you know?

  • A health crisis is leading to financial disaster for yourself, your family, or someone you know in NSA who has been a member for at least three years.
  • You have suffered catastrophic losses due to a natural disaster.
  • You are a current or former long-term NSA member who has outlived your assets and are having trouble keeping yourself and your family afloat.
  • You have a student or know of a student who needs help with college tuition.
  • You are part of a non-profit organization that is struggling to find the funds for technology issues.

Contact NSA Headquarters at 480-968-2552 or email for more information.