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Makenna knows how to command an audience. She beatboxes. She speaks to the heart. And she has the kind of energy that flies off stages and into people’s hearts.

With over a decade of professional speaking experience, and 1000 hours of professional stage time in front of audiences from 15 to 2500, she’s emceed events, led conferences, been on TEDx stages, classrooms, and panels. From the classroom to the boardroom, she’s the go-to speaker for discussing leadership challenges in an diversifying landscape. As a multi-business CEO she is uniquely positioned to speak on a wide range of topics.


  • “Makenna commands the room. She is a force. She stands before us not as a gatekeeper but a locksmith. As in — do you not have a key to the room she’s in? She’ll make you a new one. She’ll find an open window. She’ll pick the current lock or break it down. She wants everyone to feel safe and welcome, but she also knows when she can’t. She never goes beyond her abilities. But she always goes above and beyond her comfort zone to do no harm and do what’s right.”

    — Monica Prince, monicaprince.com
  • “Makenna Held brings whipsmart depth to the stage and can tackle the subjects she speaks on with heart and intelligence. Her openness, experience, and voice bring authenticity to any conversation and she actively creates experiences for her audiences so that they can face the world and themselves in a meaningful and impactful way.”

    — Rocky Callen, Book Coach, Author
  • “Her presence is powerful and passionate, and has you lean in for more. She’s an impassioned advocate for all things truthful and liberating and connects deeply with her audience.”

    — Keri-Anne Livingstone, keriannelivingstone.com
  • “I think Makenna could speak to anyone. Basically she knows how to rip down walls and get us thinking about things that really matter in the survival of the human race. She brings it! Very educated, and knowledgeable and articulate with her words. She definitely got me thinking and feeling things I didn’t ever think or feel before.

    If you are thinking of booking her to speak, do it. It will be a pretty crazy, high ride. And you will leave better for it. Plus, you won’t forget her.”

    — Adera Angelucci, aderaangelucci.com
  • “Makenna was masterful at bringing many different flavors/styles and perspectives together. Sometimes just watching her was exhausting because she was such a powerhouse! Yet time spent with her was thought provoking and energizing as well. She is so damned smart yet she’s down to earth. Her knack for welcoming and exploring paradoxes and difficult questions was quite amazing. I also found her sense of humor and ability to laugh at herself very refreshing. She’s an engaging speaker that lights up the whole space.”

    — Tracy Brooks, soulbeckons.com
  • “She’ll light your audience on fire and inspire them to go out and spark change. She’s passionate, engaging and deeply thoughtful about making the world around her and her audience, a better place.”

    — Ellen Ercolini, thefrequencymethod.com

She would love to speak to your community, audience, or team on the following topics:


Cultivating Resilience for Personal Mastery

We’re all differing in our capacities for change, impact, and personal growth.  But anyone can build their resilience to grow their business, expand their life, and build something they never thought possible.  Bashing the proverbial ‘glass ceiling’ for anyone is a process that requires deep personal work, and expanding personal resilience.  In this talk, Makenna will show the audience concrete ways they can change their resilience and expand their grit to be more effective humans, and leaders–for themselves, their community, and the world at large.


Recipe Free Leadership

There are so many how-to books on leading a team, but what if we told you that none of it will be effective for YOUR team?  Why?  Because while the elements are the same for all teams, the nuances are where the magic happens.  In this talk, Makenna will illuminate how to start building intuitive leadership skills to allow managers and executives to lead their teams with heart, joy, and for the benefit of all.


How REAL Marketing Can Change Business for Good

Marketing has changed.  The game is no longer driven by advertisers in ivory towers on Madison Avenue, and it no longer simply a ‘let me show you how with my offering you can have this perfect life’.  Marketing is now now a process of culture change and it is driven by all of us.  Learn how the REAL Marketing framework is utilized by corporations as large as Apple to as small as the Etsy seller down the street from you.  And learn how you too can leverage the framework to shift your business for Good–permanently and for positive impact in the world at large.


How to Shatter Oneself to Come Together Again

Sometimes we must shatter ourselves, our expectations, and our dreams to clean the slate and start over.  Through her story of coming out, weathering melanoma at a young age, achieving your bucket list too soon, and turning divorce into a positive experience–Makenna shows how the process of breaking oneself to come back together can be truly beautiful, and that no matter how broken we may feel we are indeed perfect, whole, and beautiful no matter what.


Personal, Community, and Global Leadership

There are three types of leadership–personal, community, and global.  At each of these phases of growth and capacity there are stumbling blocks that arise.  In this conversation, Makenna will elucidate how to avoid the common missteps, and be a more effective leader by crafting your own leadership recipe.  Participants will leave with a keen understand of where they are, and where they are going on their own leadership journey.


Team Leadership in Challenging Times

We’re in the midst of a massive culture shift, and times are challenging.  But, there is a way to be more effective in leadership in the current culture–craft new systems.  In this presentation, Makenna will give a road map on how to be more effective in leading a team by understanding the ‘soul of team leadership’.  Audience members will leave with a clear action plan and concrete steps to shift their leadership and as a result?  Their teams capacity.


Feminist Leadership

What is ‘feminist leadership’?  Answer:  It’s not enough.  But it’s a great place to start.  During this keynote, Makenna will discuss how Feminism has failed women and men, and how moving to an inclusive, intersectional form of leadership is crucial if we want to truly understand how to lead, and not simply command.  Audience members will leave this conversation with a keen understanding how how we cannot build new systems using broken ones, and how cultivating new pathways for leadership and personal growth is the only way to create true, systemic change.


When Good Intentions are Not Good Enough

As the saying goes “The road to hell is paved in good intentions”.  So if good intentions aren’t good enough how do we do better?  In this keynote, Makenna will show how intentions are often misused and misunderstood, and how we’re ultimately a culture that thrives on expectations not intentions and how to shift back to focusing on true intentions and the relevant impact they create.


Ethical Give Back Campaigns

Corporate social responsibility.  Give back campaigns.  Building schools, water wells, one-for-one marketing models.  There are so many ways in which businesses–from the tiny to the massive–can utilize their profits for good.  But there’s a dark side to giving back–what are the long-term impacts and ripple effects of the work you’re trying to do?  What are the underbelly results that may or may not have been thought of?  In this round table discussion or talk, Makenna will illuminate how give back campaigns can be misused and abused to the detriment of the communities you’re trying to ‘help’ and she’ll cover the ‘how to do better’ and think more globally.

Makenna is a deeply resourced speaker in may topics including development economics, women’s leadership, creative business strategy, recipe-free cooking, marketing, the shifting tides of womanhood, bisexuality, and more. If something has peaked your interest…

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  • “Hire Makenna to speak at your event, if you want your audience to have prompts to look deeper into themselves and the ways of operating that are not serving themselves or the greater good + someone who is honest and real.”

    — Allison Braun, The Business Joyologist
  • “Makenna’s ability to create an inclusive container for folks participate in variety of ways made me feel at ease during her events. I enjoyed the option of engaging, or not, in mindfulness and movement practices depending on where my energy and attention-span was in the moment. These events encouraged me to not only take care of myself, but to be acutely aware of my impact on others. I came with curiosity, and left with a community.”

    — Sarah Silvas, sarahsilvas.com
  • “Makenna is so clear, and has done so much deep work around her subject that you know you can trust what you are hearing.”

    — Omkari Williams, omkariwilliams.com
  • “I love how passionate, clear, and direct Makenna is as a speaker. She is authentic and easily relatable. She is a powerhouse, you won’t be disappointed!”

    — Heather Ash, heatherashamara.com
  • “Hiring Makenna to speak at your event would change the atmosphere in a positive manner. Her energy and her knowledge could make any space enjoyable.”

    — Dy-Onna Stith