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Vanessa is an award winning documentary filmmaker, national speaker, and 2x TEDx speaker. 

At an early age, Vanessa experienced sexual abuse and neglect, ultimately resulting in educational challenges and a short time in the foster care system. At age 15, Vanessa was sexually assaulted at a college preparatory program and overcame the many faces of rape culture.

She travels and speaks nationally on how to confront adversity with grace using her personal story as a vehicle to inspire and empower others. 


"Vanessa is an engaging and thoughtful speaker.

Her presence is wise beyond her years and her story brought the audience in touch with a deeply emotional topic that was felt by all." 

Abigail Cutter,

Air Force Sexual Assault Prevention & Response Program.



Vanessa shares her harrowing personal story experiencing child abuse, sexual violence, and educational obstacles. Through sharing her most painful experiences, she teaches how to

find peace, meaning, and purpose in challenges . This talk provides five strategies that will teach you how to confront your adversity with grace.

As a result of attending this program, your group will learn:


Learn five actionable strategies to confront obstacles with

grace and grit.



How to find peace in

experiences that have

caused pain.


Identify the value

and meaning in your

personal story.

Fear & Failure

Learn the importance of using fear, failure and rejection as tools to succeed. Experiencing failure and rejection is inevitable, so why can’t we learn from it instead of being afraid and discouraged by it? Vanessa teaches five strategic steps on how to be resilient through life’s challenges. Sharing inspiring examples from her lived experiences, she will challenge you to ask why not instead of why.

As a result of attending this program, your group will learn:


How to be resilient and build confidence through failure

and rejection.


How to identify your personal

barriers and turn them

into strengths.


Understand how what we

see depends on what

we look for.

Journey Mercies Exercise

In this intimate round table exercise, Vanessa will help others navigate how to share their stories while practicing mercy and compassion. Vanessa will help individuals in the group redefine their experiences with a simple, yet transformative exercise that redefines lives. We cannot change past experiences, but we can choose how we feel about them. Practicing mercy and compassion is at the premise of healing.  

As a result of attending this program, your group will learn:


How to share your personal

story in the most

compassionate way.


How to move through and learn

from your wounds instead of 

being stuck in them.


How to practice mercy and

compassion as a means to

find healing from obstacles.