Meet Tony

Tony was born on July 12, 1970 in eastern Pennsylvania. He weighed only 3 lbs and 4 ozs and was 14 inches long. He was born two months premature with the condition known as Cerebral Palsy. CP struck the left side of his body affecting his coordination. Doctors told his mother, Linda, "Tony will never walk!"

In spite of great odds against him, and contrary to then-established medical opinions, Tony would learn to walk through the help of family, friends, and, especially, God. Tony's personal journey and testimony is an inspiring message of hope, encouragement and perseverance.

Tony travels around the country now sharing his inspiring message with young people. His message is especially revelant to today's bully-culture found in nearly every school in America. Best-selling New York Times author and nationally syndicated radio host Dave Ramsey says this about Tony, "Tony has a personal testimony that will motivate, inspire, and challenge your group of youth or adults to overcome obstacles and live a full and meaningful life."

Overcoming Struggles

  • Tony's parents (Linda and Thomas Bartoli) adopted Tony, knowing completely that he was born with Cerebral Palsy. CP has impacted his body but it has not impacted his mind and voice. He speaks with vision and clarity about the danger of bullying and how to stand against it.
  • His Mom stretched his baby legs every day for the first forty-two months of his life. She also rolled newspapers tied with shoelaces as make-shift braces.
  • Dad poured countless hours, resources, energy and time into Tony's life.
  • Tony was bullied for over five years of his life in the public schools, resulting in day after day of frustration, fear, resentment, ridicule and hurt.
  • In grades 4th through 6th, a group of six kids brought verbal harassment and name-calling against him.
  • In grades 7th through 9th a wave of bullying started (done by the same group mentioned above).

Tony has turned these negative experiences and physical obstacles into an inspiring message that will challenge young people to take a stand against bullying and to encourage teenagers to show compassion toward those being bullied.

When you book Tony for a personal appearance you will hear him share his story of God's overcoming power in a young boy's life of rejection, physical struggles, ridicule and fear. With a heart for today's youth, Tony shares events that will challenge and inspire your teens and touch the heart of your adults! Audiences find Tony joyful, energetic, funny and moving.