Diversity reboot

Lelia Gowland
Lelia Gowland
Summit Speaker

Speaker and writer on authenticity

Lelia (rhymes with “Amelia”) is a sought-after speaker and writer. She works with people and organizations that want to lead with authenticity to create happier, more effective teams. Her personal journey with identity informs Lelia’s approach to authenticity. After hiding her sexual orientation for decades, she finally came out as queer at the age of 37. Lelia wrote a popular Huffington Post article (https://bit.ly/3wK4EIe) about my experience, and the reaction to that piece solidified something she’s seen again and again: Our authenticity is medicine. Described as “the confidence fairy godmother we all need,” Lelia has delighted audiences ranging from experts in international shipping, to doctors, to fancy bartenders. In her speeches and writing, Lelia uses dynamic storytelling and personal vulnerability so we all feel less alone. We build a powerful sense of connection when we share those “real life” moments — the ones we all experience but don’t always talk about. In addition to writing her much-loved weekly newsletter on authenticity, Lelia’s written over 150 articles in national publications including Huffington Post, Forbes, and Harper’s Bazaar. As a devoted fan of teen magazines growing up, she was particularly delighted when Cosmopolitan and Marie Claire profiled her for her affirming approach. Her book You Got This: The Ultimate Negotiation Guide for Professional Women provides a “fresh and instantly applicable” toolkit for anyone ready to develop their own authentic voice in negotiation. Finally, as a New Orleans native and enthusiast, Lelia freely uses the word y’all and has an entire closet dedicated to costuming.