Tonya Fitzpatrick

Tonya Fitzpatrick

Tonya TEDxWilmWomen1

About Tonya Fitzpatrick

Tonya Fitzpatrick inspires people to discover their purpose as a pathway to success, how to embrace the transformative power of travel and navigate the world as a global citizen.

"Tonya is an amazing speaker, traveller, & example for world citizenship. She truly lives her story: Connecting people & service across the world. Her story exemplifies living a life of continual transition. There were amazing stories & asides, as Tonya kept the audience focused on their own potential development journeys."
Travis Collier, Author, USCG Officer, Military Transition Consultant

"Tonya spoke at the 2017 National Association of Women MBAs annual Conference. She knows the real value of careers, career transitions, and honoring one's life's work. The audience gave rave reviews."

Dr. Bethany Miller, NAWMBA Conference Chair, 2017
“Tonya did an amazing job of educating us on what it takes to launch, run and sustain a successful podcast…I walked away with an awareness of what it takes and tangible strategies on how to succeed.”
Jennifer Ransaw Smith, CEO, Brand id

“If I could express what Tonya is in one word it would be REGAL…Even before she presented I observed how Tonya was proficient and incredible in her craft.”

Sherron Washington, Founder, Market Simple Summit
“Tonya is an engaging, charismatic speaker and a great storyteller. She takes you with her; as she easily interacts with her audience. That’s a gift!”
Sangeeta Waldron, Founder, Serendipity PR & Media; Contributing Editor to 3BL Media
“Tonya showcases her depth of knowledge and passion for socially conscious travel. As a woman of color, she brings a unique perspective to her approach to travel, which is evident in all of her endeavors.”
Helen Hernandez, CEO, North American Travel Journalist Association

Tonya’s Speaker Demo

Tonya’s TEDx talk

About Tonya Fitzpatrick

Tonya's extensive public presence showcases her versatility across a diverse array of platforms and forums. Known for her compelling solo public speaking engagements, she has also shared the stage and appeared on broadcasts alongside her husband Ian, highlighting their dynamic synergy. As a favored guest across various media channels, Tonya has graced television screens from local to national networks, contributed her insights on notable podcasts including Frommers and AAA, and been highlighted in esteemed publications such as Success Magazine, AARP, and Black Enterprise.

Her role as a masterful moderator and panel curator is evident in her orchestration of engaging discussions on esteemed panels at prestigious events, including the New York International Travel Show. Whether speaking individually or with Ian, Tonya captivates audiences with her depth of knowledge and engaging delivery.


Tonya’s expertise covers a vast range of subjects, enabling her to articulate with authority and passion on topics including:

  • Motivation and Inspiration
  • Advancing Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) initiatives
  • The transformative power of travel for personal and societal growth
  • The intricate dynamics of travel and tourism industries
  • Pathways for professional development and navigating career pivots
  • Principles and practices of sustainability in various contexts
  • Human Rights
  • The interplay between arts and cultural understanding
  • Education
  • Entrepreneurship

Previous Speaking Engagements

Her keynote addresses and panel discussions, delivered both individually and alongside Ian on occasion, have captivated audiences worldwide. Some of her noted titles reflect her engagement with contemporary issues:

  • Keynote: “DEI: A Travel Industry Imperative”
  • Moderator, “AI and the Travel Industry: Navigating the Future”
  • Panelist, “The Right Message in Tourism: Making Genuine ESG Claims”
  • Keynote: “The Transformative Power of Travel: Shifting from Transactional to Transformational Journeys”
  • Keynote: “Art as a Bridge to Global Consciousness"
  • Keynote: "Sustainable Tourism 101: Principles for the Future"
  • Keynote: "The Economic and Social Benefits of Diversity in Tourism"
  • Panelist, "Elevating the Travel Experience: Tips for Meaningful Journeys"

  • Panelist, "Emerging Travel Trends: Shaping the Future of Vacations"
  • Keynote: "Finding Gold in the Stories Untold"
  • Panelist, "Peeling Back the Layers of Travel Journalism"
  • Keynote: "Facing the Imposter Within: Overcoming Self-Doubt"
  • Panelist, "Strategies to Combat Burnout: Personal and Professional Perspectives"
  • Keynote: "Unlocking Productivity Through Travel: A New Perspective"
  • Keynote: “Find your WHY to Find your Way”

Additional references:

"I recommend without reservation Tonya Fitzpatrick as a speaker and educator. I’ve known Tonya for a few years since I spoke at a DEI-related online event. I invited her to speak on a related topic to a graduate-level course at New York University that I launched last year on the theme of inclusive welcome. My students and I learned so much! Tonya thoughtfully and meaningfully engaged with our graduate students. She worked hard to prepare a smart presentation that was informative yet informal, which generated a true conversation This course is built on the experience of experts like Tonya and is helping create more conscientious future leaders in tourism & hospitality."

Ed Salvato, Adjunct, NYU Tisch Center of Hospitality
"Tonya has a welcome gravitas and deep knowledge of the travel industry. She is a true powerhouse, and an excellent speaker."
Pauline Frommer, Host, Frommer Travel Show
"Tonya is an excellent moderator. The panels she organizes and moderates are always compelling."
Elizabeth Harryman Lasley, Host/Producer, OnTravel Media

Success Simplified

Ever wonder why you feel like you’re on a treadmill, trying to go faster and juggling many different tasks while trying to please everyone? You’re not alone! These days it seems that everyone is trying to grab the gold ring but the carousel is going too fast and it’s too complicated to find competent strategies to reach out and actually grasp it.

What if you took command and chose your own meaning of success so that you could love the life you live? The insights shared by the authors in this book have the capacity to not only inspire but transform your life.



Appointed to the Maryland Tourism Development Board by Governor Wes Moore. Media executive, on-air personality, public speaker, lawyer and former politico, Tonya Fitzpatrick has been recognized as Black Travel Journalist of the Year (Black Travel Summit) and is the recipient of a Female CEO of the Year Award for Best Social Impact Travel Media (CEO Monthly). She is a co-Founder of World Footprints, a socially conscious travel media platform that was founded on the unity principle of "Ubuntu" - I am because we are. Along with her husband/partner Ian, Tonya hosts the multi award-winning World Footprints podcast where she has interviewed distinguished guests like the late Dr. Maya Angelou. Through World Footprints, Tonya amplifies stories about the transformative power of travel and the beauty of our common humanity.

Tonya is a professional public speaker who has done 3 TEDx presentations and has spoken on international stages. She built and moderated a program on DEIA in the tourism industry for the New York International Travel Show. She also built and appeared as a panelist on another program that provided travel tips from award-winning journalists for the same show.

Tonya is a lawyer, author and member of famed The Explorers Club (one of a few women of color). She was appointed as a Delegate to the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women received an appointment as Deputy Assistant Secretary of Civil Rights Policy at the US Department of Education.

As a seasoned fundraiser for the arts, Tonya is a huge advocate for STEAM and the developmental power of the arts in education. She is an actor and has performed at Improv showcases in Washington, DC.

Widely recognized as a social impact travel expert, Tonya has been honored by the Women Economic Forum as an "Iconic Woman Creating a Better World for All" and the Women in Travel & Tourism International has recognized her as a “Top Woman in Travel Media”.

A frequent media guest, Tonya is often seen on NBC, CBS, The List and other television programs. She is often heard on podcasts and she has also been featured in a number of publications including in AAA World, MSNBC, U.S. News and World Reports and Black Enterprise and in several books.

Tonya graduated from the London School of Economics, Wayne State University Law School and she attended East China University of Politics and Law. She has lived, studied or worked in England, Russia and China.

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