I wanted to teach and speak words that made a difference since the tender age of five when my grandmother gifted me with an adult-sized chalk board for my birthday. For hours each day, with my brothers and sister seated on a front row of chairs, I reviewed spelling words and math problems. After they tired of my drills, I lined up my stuffed animals to hear re-created Sunday school lessons on a homemade felt board.
When the time came for me to head to college, no one was surprised that I earned degrees in both Secondary and Religious Education. The surprise came during my last semester after an eye-opening internship. Faced with uninspired teenagers who cared more about sports than Spanish lessons, I decided I wasn’t cut out for teaching. I abandoned that dream and returned to school to earn a Master’s Degree in Social Work.
My first job was in a hospital as a medical social worker. Before a year passed, I landed in front of groups of health care professionals to talk about patients’ emotional needs. That’s when I realized how much I missed teaching.
What began as knee-knocking, hand-trembling and face-flushing presentations to audiences of 50-100 people soon became welcomed experiences. Speaking and teaching were my opportunity to make a difference.
Whether you need a night to unplug and recharge with an inspirational message, a motivational class on leadership, or a weekend of serious study and reflection, I have a program for you.
My passion is to teach with a facilitative, interactive style. I love to engage audiences to discover kernels of truth for themselves and take-aways to put those truths into practice. I’ve had the privilege of teaching and sharing with over 10,000 adults and students in business, professional, and faith-based settings. I have spoken to organized retreats, study groups, Sunday school classes, congregations, business groups, and professional organizations. My programs have ranged from an hour to a day to a nine-month series.
During the last few years, God cultivated another dream — to write. Up to this point, my thoughts were inscribed only on journal pages as treasured memories. Yet, with my family’s encouragement, I began transforming those journal entries into stories of God’s amazing work.
My stories and articles have appeared in Chicken Soup for the Soul, The White’s Chapel Herald (a church newspaper with circulation 9000+), and two anthologies, Heavenly Company and The Plight Before Christmas. I published devotionals in both Love is a Verb and the Secret Place. One devotional was awarded second place in the 2010 North Texas Christian Writers annual contest.
My husband, Jim, and I are blessed with one gorgeous daughter, a handsome son-in-law, and a vivacious granddaughter who keeps her Gigi hopping. In my free time, I enjoy reading, tending my butterfly garden, and doing lunch with friends. Recently I retired from the business world and now chair two women’s groups dedicated to connecting women with each other, their communities, and God.
To view and print a copy of my One Sheet and contact information for your reference, click here: GloriaAshbyBio