Michael Pinball Clemons

One of Canada's Greatest Athletes and Community Leaders

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Michael Pinball Clemons | One of Canada's Greatest Athletes and Community Leaders

CFL legend Michael “Pinball” Clemons is an icon of sporting excellence, community leadership, and personal integrity. With boundless energy and moments of quiet introspection, he talks about teamwork and the potential each of us has to achieve anything we set our minds to. Good-natured and unabashedly emotional, he shows you how to put your heart into everything you do. 

Michael “Pinball” Clemons is an icon of sporting excellence, community leadership and personal integrity. Considered one of the best athletes Canada has ever known, his real legacy may well lie with the thousands of people he has inspired, both on and off the field. Clemons stands only 5 feet 6 inches; he weighs 170 pounds. Despite this—because of this—he led a spectacular CFL career, obliterating records, and winning Grey Cups with the Toronto Argonauts, as both a player and their head coach. (When you win as a coach, he has said, it’s like winning 42 times at once.)


“Coaching was a job in which Clemon’s nurturing and paternalistic side was as important as his technical understanding of the game. He was willing to give a chance to players who clashed with management in other places or had problematic pasts. He was the definitive players’ coach.”

The Globe and Mail

Clemons was also the Argos’ CEO, and is now their vice chair. Away from the game, Michael “Pinball” Clemons has an undying commitment to community—especially to youth—that is simply unparalleled. He lends his name and time to countless high-profile causes, including the Argos’ Stop the Violence campaign, which encourages the active participation of communities, schools and government in educating youth and curbing increasing gun violence.  


“The event went very well, and Michael’s presentation was outstanding! We also really appreciate how he took the time to incorporate what our members do into his presentation. We really enjoyed having him at the conference, and he was kind enough to hang around for a bit after his session to meet and take pictures with delegates.”

Canadian Society of Customs Brokers

“Michael was absolutely amazing and did exactly what we asked him to do with the Closing message, he took the delegates on a roller coaster ride of emotion and left every one of the delegates on a high when they left the conference. He was so dynamic and touching at the same time. He was able to relate to the delegates and the importance of what they do for their organizations and communities. His message hit the mark. Michael was an absolute delight to work with.”

Alberta Culture

“Pinball was AMAZING! I just looked at our evaluations from the Summit and 100% of the participants rated his session as excellent—he is very dynamic and real and through his great story telling he provided some very good leadership points. I would recommend him to anyone looking for a motivating, inspiring, and all round great speaker!”

Revera Inc.

“In brief, Pinball was terrific. The presentation was high-energy entertainment for all participants, including those who are not sports or football fans. He truly is an engaging speaker. He did a tremendous job of ‘weaving in’ the information about Allstate that I’d provided for him. He used our conference theme, corporate data/statistics, information about our President etc. He also got the audience involved, which made a big difference.”

Allstate Insurance Corporation

“Michael electrified the room with his personality and super warm smile, and he made a point of getting to know each of the 200 people in the room. It was like reuniting with an old high school buddy from 30 years ago.”

Barrie Food Bank

“We have had several speakers over the past two years, but you are the best! Your passion, energy, humility, and great sense of humour really resonated with the group—I know they left the room pumped!”


“I knew Michael was going to be great, but he exceeded all expectations. He was absolutely amazing. The nicest man I have ever met. Everyone commented on how touched they were by his speech. The room was filled with laughter and tears. His stories were touching and hit close to home for a lot of us. I have never seen my team as excited about something has they were after Michael’s visit! I will be recommending Michael to friends and family, and other organizations as well. We were extremely pleased and blessed to have him attend our meeting.”

HD Supply Canada Inc.

“Thanks for the opportunity to have Mike Clemons come and speak to our team. He was simply amazing! I knew he would be a very inspirational speaker to have join us for this meeting and I am so pleased he was able to help us out.”

La Roche Ltd.

“I have received many messages of thanks from our Principals stating just how much they appreciated Michael’s presentation. His message touched the hearts and minds of our group. His personal and professional insights had a profound impact. His stories brought a sense of hope and inspiration to the entire group. These stories helped us to laugh and brought us to tears. He touched the audience deeply with his thoughtful and upbeat themes. Michael is truly a gifted speaker.”

Avon Maitland District School Board

Speech Topics

Motivational Speakers
All Heart An Evening with Michael “Pinball” Clemons

It is impossible to overstate just how dynamic, how energizing Michael Clemons is on stage. Contrasting boundless “pinball”-like energy with moments of quiet dignity, he engages audience members, literally, to deliver an unforgettable, often emotional speech. One of the most in-demand speakers in Canada, he talks with unabashed passion about teamwork, about the potential in each of us to achieve anything we set our minds to, and about putting your heart—fully—into everything you do.