Dr. Steven D. Cohen is a leading expert on persuasive speaking and effective presentation skills. He is an accomplished scholar and dynamic trainer who has brought research-based insights to companies in a wide range of industries. Dr. Cohen is well known for helping leaders and professionals speak with authority, confidence, and influence. He has been quoted in media outlets such as the Financial Times, Slate, HuffPost, Vanity Fair, New York Magazine, and NBC News. Dr. Cohen also was featured in the BBC Radio documentary, “Churchill’s Secret Cabinet.” He holds faculty appointments at the Johns Hopkins Carey Business School and the Harvard Division of Continuing Education.
Dr. Cohen is president of Summit Presentations, LLC, a boutique training company that helps managers and individual contributors communicate their ideas with influence. Based on the latest research, Dr. Cohen and his team design corporate training programs that dramatically improve employees’ communication and leadership skills. Prior to starting the company, he served as managing director of the Oral Communication Program at the University of Maryland, and as an assistant professor at the University of Baltimore. Dr. Cohen also spent several years working in the private sector. He was an assistant vice president and team leader at Bank of America and later became a senior strategy consultant at IBM Global Business Services. In addition, Dr. Cohen was the founder and chairman of Friends for Life of America, a nonprofit organization that improves the quality of life for pediatric cancer patients and their families. Under his leadership, the organization distributed hats, holiday cards, and teddy bears to patients in almost every state and more than 30 countries.
Dr. Cohen’s scholarly interests include persuasive communication, workplace presentations, and public speaking training. He is particularly interested in the communication behaviors of effective leaders, and the use of experiential exercises to help promote effective speaking skills. Dr. Cohen’s work has appeared in national and international publications, including College Teaching, Communication Teacher, The International Journal of Listening, Listening Education, Relevant Rhetoric, and Toastmaster magazine. He has presented his research at top-tier academic conferences, such as the National Communication Association Convention, the International Listening Association Convention, and the Association of American Colleges & Universities Annual Meeting. Dr. Cohen is the author of Public Speaking: The Path to Success (2nd edition) and Lessons from the Podium: Public Speaking as a Leadership Art. He is also the editor of Speaking for Success: Readings and Resources (2nd edition), a collection of essential articles on the art of public speaking.
Dr. Cohen earned a Ph.D. in communication from the University of Maryland, a Master in Public Policy from Harvard University, and a Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration, summa cum laude, from the University of Florida. He is the recipient of many awards and honors, including the Dean’s Award for Faculty Excellence from the Johns Hopkins Carey Business School and The National Society of Leadership and Success Excellence in Teaching Award. Dr. Cohen has earned Advanced Toastmaster and Competent Leader designations from Toastmasters International. He is a lifetime member of Beta Gamma Sigma and was inducted into the University of Florida Hall of Fame.