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Speaking Engagements
I love sharing my personal stories and images about my pelagic adventures and I love being a motivational speaker!


Please contact me at if you would like to discuss how I can engage people at your event. (in-person or a virtual visit)


As a professional speaker and storyteller, I offer inspiring, dynamic presentations on a variety of topics. 

Please join me! Booking now for 2024

StoryTime - Yay! 
My insanely talented illustrator Rebecca Rothman and I offer a fun and engaging 45-minute adventure-themed presentation geared for adventurous tykes and their adult peeps. Program includes coloring activities!

Click on the bears for more info on our story time events!

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March 9, 6 pm

She Tells Sea Tales!

Northwest Maritime Center, 431 Water Street, Port Townsend, WA

I've been keen to speak at this beloved community event for years and 2024 is my lucky year! In conjunction with International Women's Day, I'll join five other women storytellers, sharing 8 to 10 minutes of heartfelt, real, and raw seafaring stories. This pivotal event showcases all kinds of experiences where women are connected to the water, be it fishing, sailing, tall ships, cruising, paddling, work boats, etc. It sells out every year so be sure to get your tickets early!
Everyone is welcome. Learn more.

March 13, 7:30 pm

Backcountry Essentials

214 W Holly St., Bellingham, WA
Boatloads of thanks to the Bellingham Mountaineers for hosting me at this gathering in Bellingham! Everyone is invited; you do NOT need to be a member to attend. Free event, and as always, there will be some EXPED schwag!

March 22, 6-7:30 pm

elSage Shop

408 & 410 S 1st St, Mt. Vernon, WA

A visual feast and an evening of fun and camaraderie in one of the coolest businesses in downtown Mt. Vernon!
BYOChair (we'll have a few) and enjoy a screaming fast trip up the Inside Passage as I share my stories and images of my 2022 solo, 78-day sea kayak expedition paddling from San Juan Island to Sitka, Alaska. Space is limited so please RSVP by emailing me at 
We'll have snacks and beverages and I'll have a stack of books for sale if ya'all are so inclined to take home a personalized copy.
Some EXPED schwag will be given away too—who doesn't love free stuff?
~ Suggested $10 donation at the door ~

April 20, 6-9 pm

Fundraiser for Washington Water Trails

Wallingford Senior Center, Lower Level of Good Shepherd Center

4649 Sunnyside Avenue, Seattle, WA

Enjoy a scrumptious salmon dinner, silent auction, kindred spirits, and a paddling journey through the Salish Sea!
Learn about a meandering 130-mile trip in 14 (mostly) leisurely days, paddling from Olympia to Lummi Island, Washington. Paddling in my own backyard gave me a better understanding of this “sea between the mountains” and a bigger appreciation for the Cascadia Marine Trail system and the pivotal work WWTA does. Pre-registration required!

Click here for event info and to sign up!

May 4, 4-6 pm

Mount Baker Club

Bellingham Library, 210 Central Ave., Bellingham, WA

The Mount Baker Club, an uber-active, social, and super fun club is hosting my "Inside Passage Take Two" talk. This is a FREE event, open to ALL (no need to be a member of the Club), and will start promptly at 4 pm, in the downstairs lecture room at our lovely  downtown library. Come on out and experience a fun paddling journey—I promise you won't get your feet wet!

Just a sprinkling of my past speaking engagements:
The Explorers Club, New York, NY

Wooden Boat Festival, Port Townsend, WA

Women's Day at the Seattle Boat Show, Seattle, WA

National Girls and Women in Sports Day, Bellingham, WA

McMenamins Theatre, Bend, OR

REI, multiple locations throughout the U.S.

MEC, multiple locations throughout Canada

Chanticleer Authors Conference, Bellingham, WA

Delmarva Paddler's Retreat, Lewes, DE

Wright State University / Adventure Summit Expo, Dayton, OH

Southern Oregon University Student Union, Ashland, OR

 Robinson’s Outdoor Store, Victoria, BC

Pacific Lutheran University, Tacoma, WA

Guest Lecturer onboard Princess Cruises, as part of their award-winning "North to Alaska" program. I'm honored to meet people from all corners of the USA, as well as an average of 30 different countries on each cruise. What an INCREDIBLE opportunity for me to share my stories and images with a captive audience. These beautiful ships hold up to 4,200 passengers (including crew), are nearly 1,000 feet in length, and are almost 200 feet tall—a radically different way to experience the Inside Passage and a mind-blowing way to engage and connect with people from all walks of life. 


Talks and Topics

  • Seeking Synchronicity: A Solo Kayak Journey Through the Inside Passage (2022 expedition)

  • A Journey of the Sea & Soul

    • Lessons learned while paddling the Inside Passage to Alaska​ (2010 expedition)

  • Kid's StoryTime "Inside my Sea of Dreams"

  • Exploring Montana's Missouri River by kayak

  • Paddling Nootka Sound, British Columbia

  • Paddling BC waters

  • A Paddling Journey Through the Salish Sea

  • How to Gear up for a Plastic-free Adventure!

  • Grand Journey in a Small Boat: How to Plan and Execute an Inside Passage Expedition -- two-day workshop

  • Writing group presentation topics:

    • Turning Your Adventure into a Book

    • Crafting your DYNAMITE Book Tour

    • Advice From the Trenches: Adapting a Children's Book From a Real-life Memoir.

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EXPED is a proud sponsor of my book tours! 
Visit their website to get the “inside scoop” on expedition equipment that’s made for the long haul.





Thank you EXPED 
for supporting my journey!



Feedback from event hosts:

Susan shared her presentation with the Obsidians, an outdoor club in Eugene, Oregon which hosts monthly programs. She attracted a record-setting crowd and did not disappoint. She is so articulate, the slides are beautiful, the pace was excellent, and the stories are inspiring. For weeks afterwards, I heard "that was the best presentation ever!" We will invite her back!    

~ Lana Lindstrom, Entertainment Chair, Obsidians

Susan’s intriguing and compelling tale of determination, courage and introspection was indeed riveting, and the standing room only crowd was thoroughly engaged throughout her presentation. Following her slide presentation, she eagerly entertained  many questions from the audience.

~ Alan M. Fisher, M.D., President, Oregon Ocean Paddling Society (OOPS)


Susan was one of the best presenters we have had in the nine years of the Olympia Mountaineers Speaker Series. She was well prepared, had fabulous maps/photos and was very entertaining.

~  Carolyn Burreson, Coordinator of the Olympia Mountaineer's Speaker Series 


We are big fans of Susan Conrad’s book Inside and were thrilled to bring her to our community. We had a large turnout and sold out of stock at the event. The audience loved her presentation and the Q&A after, with one reader comparing Conrad’s journey to Cheryl Strayed’s, ‘only better!’

~ Eagle Harbor Books, Bainbridge Island, WA


Susan Conrad’s presentation is fun and engaging. Her knowledge of the Inside Passage is impressive and her enthusiasm is infectious. The addition of a Keynote presentation to her book reading & story telling makes for an exciting, interactive author event.

~ Grass Roots Bookstore, Corvallis, OR


Your gift for story telling blended seamlessly with the beautiful photos of your incredible adventure. The entire room was thoroughly entertained and connected from the opening slide to the last question of the night. I am still getting compliments for your presentation.

~ Mike Hammond, Calusa Blueway Coordinator, Lee County Parks and Recreation, Fort Myers, Florida


The slideshow itself was an absolute success in every sense. Because of Susan’s hard work, the venue filled beyond seating capacity and attendees stood around the perimeter and sat on the floor around her transfixed by this amazing woman’s epic and inspirational journey. Susan’s background in photojournalism was evident in the picture quality and selection as they related to her story. She created a sense of intimacy with the audience, and as we shared her highs and lows and successes and struggles, nobody wanted the show to end. And while the show eventually had to end, the audience lingered around long after, wanting to continue the shared experience.

~ Dallas Betz, Education Coordinator, Community Boating Center, Bellingham, WA

Feedback from audience members:


One of the best presentations I have been to in the 10+ years I have been coming. Enthusiastic informative and entertaining.

WONDERFUL presentation!! She is such a beautiful person with a beautiful message and amazing endurance and courage!

 ~ audience members at Canoecopia, the largest paddlesports expo in the world, held in Madison, WI


Your open inclusion of your human experiences of taking the challenge, your equal representation of your inspiration, determination, personal pride, and vulnerabilities is a very wholesome balance and a wonderful model for those who hear your story.

~ Phyllis Woolwine, President & Director of Education, Shearwater University, Anacortes, WA


Susan Conrad mesmerized us with her narrative talk. Every sentence she created came across as beautiful poetry. Awesome to learn firsthand of her adventurous journey.

~ Chris and Walter


I went to Susan Conrad’s presentation of her new book "Inside: One Woman's Journey Through the Inside Passage“ in Bellingham last night. If you have not seen Susan talk about her journey, it is well worth the time. Her talk is riveting — great pictures and an overview of her epic solo kayaking journey up the Inside Passage to Alaska. She shared short stories about good times and not-so-good times with bears, weather and people. You get a clear sense of Susan’s passion for the sea, the unique challenges on such a trip, and the quality of her writing. I highly recommend her book and seeing her talk about it. 

~ Mac Carter


I am grateful that your book tour brought you to Silverdale, WA giving me the opportunity to meet you & hear your inspirational presentation. I enjoyed the way you were able to weave the stories regarding your fears and challenging times with those uplifting & amazing moments you also experienced. Your book is wonderful & I am soaking up the content, immersing myself in your journey as your words continue to inspire.

~ Judith L.


You appeared confident and calm and shared your story in a very enthusiastic, knowledgeable and courageous manner. It was incredibly inspiring.

~ Patia


Thank you, Susan, for sharing the gift of your slide show and presentation last night. I thoroughly enjoyed it and I have a newfound respect for the depth and breadth of your accomplishment! I was not alone in my admiration. At one point I looked around and saw a sea of faces in spellbound reverence. 

~ Mark



Supercalifragilisticexpialidociously Fantastic -----------Really


~ Kenneth


Susan! It was such a gift in my week to see you and hear what you had to say... You came across really beautifully as you shared your story... I am embracing that whole idea that perhaps outer movement can create some inner movement....

~ Cathy 



We enjoyed your presentation. You had a lot of great moments when the audience really connected with where you were taking them, and you moved through the story smoothly.

~ David


I applaud you for your courage. Your journey was remarkable. I was especially taken by how you shared your fears and horrific moments, and how you contrasted those with your magical moments.

~ John

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