Yvonne Bornstein

Inspiration Speaker, Author

Yvonne Bornstein is a Melbourne businesswoman, wife and mother whose story rivals elements of the novel Gorky Park.

Yvonne survived the harrowing experience of being kidnapped, held hostage, tortured, raped and rescued to now, many years later, being able to inspire and motivate others, particularly those who have suffered a trauma of any kind.

In 1992, Yvonne and her husband Daniel Weinstock went to Russia on a business trip. Because of a failed Moscow business deal, they were kidnapped at the airport by Chechen terrorists who were originally thought to be the Russian mob. Over a period of 11 days they were held captive, tortured and a demand for $1.6 million ransom was made to relatives in the US.

Yvonne and Daniel were finally rescued in a dramatic rescue by agents of the newly formed Russian Agency for Federal Security, one of the successors of the KGB. The rescue was the result of the first ever-open collaboration between the FBI and the former KGB. It was later discovered that the kidnappers had links to Osama bin Laden’s al-Qaeda network.

Today Yvonne shares her incredible life-changing and life-empowering story with individuals, businesses and corporations around the world, inspiring audiences with her courage, strength and determination.

More about Yvonne Bornstein:

In Yvonne’s own words, “That bleak morning in 1992 I fully believed I was about to die. As it turned out, that was the moment I had just begun to live.”

Showing incredible strength and determination, Yvonne Bornstein has moved through a terrifying and life-threatening experience to rebound into a more powerful, more challenging existence. For most people, this would have been impossible to overcome. Her inspiration and motivation was to shake off self-pity and confront her demons head-on. Along the way, she discovered a new-found appreciation for the simple, meaningful things in life – and how good it is to simply be alive.

She learnt that crisis can lead to gratitude and self-empowerment became her mantra. Yvonne now lives a joyful, happy life and helps others to do the same.

Yvonne Bornstein is also an author. It took her 12 years to get past the emotional and physical trauma she endured to finally tell her story in her first book, Eleven Days of Hell. Yvonne’s second book, Burned, is a fictional novel based on Eleven Days of Hell.

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