Transgender Minister and Gender Equity Advocate
Dr. Paula Stone Williams is an internationally known speaker on gender equity, LGBTQ advocacy and religious tolerance. As a transgender woman, Paula brings a unique perspective to her work on gender equity. She says, "The differences between living as a man and a woman are massive. There is no way an educated white male can understand how much the culture is tilted in his favor, because it is all he has ever known and all he ever will know."
Whether a corporate meeting, women's conference, company retreat or national gathering, Paula's unique perspective and story-telling skill delights both men and women as she humbly and effectively advocates for gender equity, LGBTQ rights and appreciation for the differences among us.
Paula has been the CEO of a large religious non-profit, the editor-at-large of a national magazine, host of a national television show and a corporate consultant. With her doctoral thesis on the DiSC Personality Profile, Paula has led hundreds of corporate boards and work teams to become more efficient and productive. Paula has served as an adjunct university professor in the United States and Europe, and is the author of eight books, including She's My Dad, co-authored with her son, Jonathan.
Paula’s memoir, As a Woman: What I Learned about Power, Sex, and the Patriarchy After I Transitioned (Simon & Schuster), chronicles her transition journey and sheds light on the gendered landscape that impacts many in the LGBTQ+ community and women in the workplace and beyond. Her memoir will be turned into a limited series by Cannonball Productions.
In addition to her public speaking and corporate consulting, she is also a Pastor and Pastoral Counselor in Boulder County, Colorado. Paula has been featured in the New York Times, the Washington Post, TEDWomen, TEDSummit, TEDxMileHigh, Red Table Talk, National Public Radio, Good Morning America, ABC Primetime News, CNN, People Magazine, and many other media outlets. She has been a keynote speaker for hundreds of conferences, corporations, and universities around the world. Her TED Talks have had over six million views.
Paula lives in Boulder County, Colorado, where she also serves as a pastor with Left Hand Church.
LOST IS A PLACE TOO: FINDING RESILIENCY IN DIFFICULT TIMES
Based on Paula's own journey, this talk focuses on how to maintain resiliency through difficult seasons. In every great myth, the hero gets lost—profoundly lost. What Paula learned in that difficult place is the wisdom that inspires her journey. Through narrative and the accumulate knowledge of her decades as a CEO and Pastoral Counselor, Paula will imaginatively help the audience identify their own path through the brambles and briars, as they explore the insights gained in the land of the lost, and the resiliency that results.
FURTHER ALONG THE ROAD TOWARD GENDER EQUITY
As a follow-up to Paula's most requested keynote address on her experience as a transgender woman, this talk focuses on the obstacles and opportunities to achieving true gender equity. How can men be more attuned to the work environment of women, and make the workplace more equitable? How can women work collaboratively to achieve their goals? Throughout this session, Paula uses humorous stories, personal anecdotes, and empirical information to motivate and empower men and women to bring about change.
I’VE LIVED AS A MAN AND A WOMAN. HERE’S WHAT I LEARNED.
Based on her TED talk (over 4.5 million views), Dr. Paula Stone Williams speaks about her experience living as a male and as a female. Are men privileged in ways they do not understand? Do women have to work harder to be seen as leaders? Do men empower each other more than women empower each other? With humor and insight, Paula Williams answers these questions and more, using both empirical data and her experience in both genders to explore the difference between equality and equity. Attendees will hear Paula's narrative of her journey, as well as be invited to examine their own lives for subtle and not so subtle ways in which we take in the messages of our culture and live them out in every area of our lives. Men will depart with a greater understanding of their own privilege, and the opportunities to make a difference that come along with that privilege. Women will know the importance of standing up for themselves and working together to bring about change. Both genders will be asked to examine how we bring our privilege with us in all of our interactions.
EVERYTHING YOU EVER WANTED TO KNOW ABOUT BEING TRANSGENDER BUT WERE AFRAID TO ASK
In this presentation, transgender activist Paula Stone Williams will provide the audience with a basic understanding of what it means to be transgender. She will talk about what gender dysphoria is, and what it is not, including causes of gender dysphoria, suicidal ideation as it relates to gender dysphoria, and why transphobia has become such a political hot button.
“It was wonderful to hear Dr. Stone Williams' perspective on living as both a man and as a women and how we need to be inclusive of transgender individuals to improve outcomes for all. It was truly the first time that perspective has been presented at SBM. Overall, it was a wonderful talk and we are so grateful she shared her lived experience.”
Society of Behavioral Medicine
“We hope you were surprised and delighted by Dr. Paula Stone Williams, a transgender pastoral counsellor whose moving speech blew the roof off.”
Retail Week Live
"It was fascinating to listen to Dr. Paula Stone Williams speak at Retail Week Live on Wednesday. As a transgender woman, she shared her personal insight into the difference between men and women and as she said, "The differences are massive!" I also loved the fact that Dr. Paula was a secret speaker so that many could benefit from her insights. A great way to drive the need for better inclusion and diversity.”
Accenture (attending Retail Week Live)
“WOW! Both myself and the team completely echo Mike’s sentiment. We were blown away by your stories, authenticity, humor and anecdotes. Thank you again for spending the time with us and sharing your wisdom. ”
“Our company, Sparkfund, invited Paula Stone Williams to lead a conversation about gender equity and I have the utmost appreciation for her time, energy, and passion for the topic. As a 50-person start-up focused on improving access to energy efficient technology, we are actively working to incorporate diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) into the fabric of our organizational culture to foster our mission and make our company a better place to work.
I serve as the Chief People Officer, and invited Paula to speak to us as an external expert on the topic. She helped provide not just a unique perspective, but also helpful recommendations and action items to drive our commitments into reality. Following her 90-minute talk, I heard so much positive buzz from the entire company. Her insight was incredibly powerful, and we have continued talking about many of her points in the time since she was in our office. We have quoted her and praised her presentation as we continue to dedicate time and attention to DEI work.
For anyone who is interested in the topic, wants to learn from a powerful and engaging speaker, or enjoys hearing outside perspectives to foster growth and development, I would strongly encourage you to watch any of Paula's recorded talks and listen to her speak live!”
“Hearing Paula Stone Williams has been one of the highlights of our year at Sparkfund. She made the women in our male-dominated office (and industry) feel seen and validated. She opened the eyes of the men with her unique perspective and real-world stories. She kept skeptics of "another HR talk" intrigued and engaged. And, most importantly, she motivated the entire company to tackle the often overwhelming problem of gender inequity with enthusiasm and empathy. There's no doubt that the current and future employees of Sparkfund will have a more caring and accepting workplace thanks to Paula's influence.”
“In a conference with 21 breakout sessions, Paula's was easily one of the most sought out, filling up completely on both days. Many employees stated that they came to the conference specifically to participate in her session, "Is Life Really Easier for Men." Working with Paula was an absolute joy! As the conference coordinator I found Paula to be engaging, compassionate and sincere - and that was just my initial phone call with her. Participants in her session stated that they wished her hour and a half session was four hours longer, as they could have listened to her all day. Getting to know Paula was, for me, a highlight of our conference.”
Oregon Department of Revenue
“Paula spoke at EPA to an audience of over 100 employees, or approximately 50% of the workforce in our building. Participation exceeded all events that have been held in our building in the last 10 years. In our office, over 50% of the employees are women and greater than 50% are managers, yet the women involved in the EPA’s Federal Women’s Program have been talking for years about how differently women are treated by each other and by men.
Paula’s perspective as a transgender woman spoke to gender equity in a way that doesn’t sound like complaining or criticism. Men left the talk feeling contemplative and many approached me afterward to express gratitude for opening their minds to the female experience.”
Environmental Protection Agency
“Thank you so much for your incredible talk and for sharing your insights with the group on Friday! We are so grateful for your time and cannot say enough about the impact of your story on the providers and staff that attended the event. We hope to work with you again in the future!”
University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus
“Following the event I had several team members say to me that they learned so much. A branch manager said the talk was inspirational and that she feels more equipped than ever with ensuring a safe and comfortable work environment for the LGBTQ population.
Personally, I was astounded with the statistical information surrounding the suicidal, and suicidal ideation, rates among members of the trans-community and hope that I personally can foster a comfortable presence. Moreover, as we discussed the unconscious bias that “privileged white males” have, I’ve begun reflecting on how I can keep myself in check in making sure I don’t un/intentionally silence the voices of my female counterparts.”
Bank of the West
“A quick note to thank you so very much for taking the time to join us and to share your unique perspective and extraordinary experience. We have had some amazing feedback from our attendees. We were all fascinated and inspired by your speech which will give everyone a lot of food for thought. I very much look forward to reading your book when it comes out next year and wanted to say how much we appreciate all you are doing to promote gender equity. Again many thanks for your time and for your invaluable insight and advice.”
As A Woman