Mariana Atencio

TEDx Speaker, Peabody Award-Winning Journalist, Bestselling Author, Entrepreneur, Inspiring Storyteller, and Host/Moderator

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Fee ranges

Domestic In-Person (USA):

$20,000 - $30,000*

International In-Person:

Please inquire


$10,000 - $15,000*


* Ranges are presented as a guideline only. Speaker fees vary by engagement type and are subject to change without notice. For an exact quote, please contact Gravity Speakers.

Traveling from

Florida, USA


Mariana Atencio is on a mission to help people supercharge their careers, their workplace cultures, and their happiness by embracing the power of authenticity. Coming to America from Venezuela as a young girl, Mariana learned first-hand how feeling self-conscious about being different kept her from engaging. After graduating Columbia University, Mariana wanted to take that experience into her journalism career and tell stories that build bridges and foster understanding. She became a national news anchor and correspondent, earning a Peabody Award for reporting which took her from Haiti to Hong Kong to the Syrian border. The success of her TEDx talk, “What Makes YOU Special?”, viewed over 23 million times, catapulted Mariana into a new storytelling outlet: speaking. Her first book, Perfectly You: Embracing the Power of Being Real, is a bestselling call to action to unleash the magic of personal and professional authenticity to find purpose and break barriers. Currently head of her own media production company, Mariana pursues stories that capture her curiosity. She also continues to deliver inspiring keynotes and moderate/host at major events.

But to start at the beginning... Originally from Caracas, Venezuela, Mariana graduated from Merici High School and received a journalism degree from Universidad Católica.

When the government of Hugo Chávez shut down independent media outlets in her home country, she participated in student protests for democracy. After being assaulted in an armed robbery, Mariana left for the United States when she received a full-merit scholarship to Columbia University’s Journalism School and received her master’s degree in broadcast journalism.

Mariana got her big break anchoring and reporting at Univision, where she also filed stories for the Documentaries and Investigative Unit. She won a Peabody Award and an Investigative Reporters and Editors (IRE) Award for her work uncovering illegal weapons sold across the border in Mexico. She also won a Gracie Award for directing, writing, and reporting PRESSionados, a documentary about press freedom in Latin America.

She then went on to host The Morning Show on Fusion, the Disney and Univision joint venture, and co-anchored the 2016 Democratic Presidential debate.

Mariana made the crossover from Spanish to English-speaking television as a national correspondent for NBC News where she was known for her boots-on-the-ground, engaging, and empathic field work. Her investigative work on Latin America, the Latino community, cartel violence, women’s and migrants’ rights earned her three Emmy nominations, a Hillman Prize, and the National Association of Hispanic Journalists Presidential Award.

In the course of her broadcast career, Mariana has reported from places like Haiti, the Syrian border, and China, underscoring the common threads in our humanity and that we are all more alike than different. She has interviewed dozens of notable figures, including Pope Francis, President Joe Biden, King Felipe VI of Spain, Nancy Pelosi, chef and humanitarian José Andrés, author Yuval Noah Harari, and director Francis Ford Coppola.

Mariana’s journey is featured on the award-winning HBO series Habla, and People magazine called her storytelling platform “a media empire.” Ten years after she arrived in the United States, Mariana won Columbia’s First Decade Award for her impressive career as a journalist.

Mariana is a 2021 Henry Crown Fellow at the Aspen Institute and spokesperson for the American Latino Museum in D.C. In 2022 she launched the hit true crime podcast series Lost in Panama, an investigation into the disappearance of Kris Kremers and Lisanne Froon, shedding light on the issue of missing women and girls in the region. Lost in Panama made Apple Podcasts’ top #10 list, and Mariana headlined Foreign Policy magazine’s HerPower summit on tackling gender inequality in the Americas.

Mariana’s TEDx talk “What Makes YOU Special?” is one of the top ten most-watched videos on YouTube. Doubling down on her message, she wrote her bestselling memoir, Perfectly You: Embracing the Power of Being Real.

Read less...



The Power Of Authenticity: Supercharge Your Career, Your Workplace Culture, And Your Happiness


What makes you special? | Mariana Atencio | TEDxUniversityofNevada
Rethinking Storytelling To Help People Care | Mariana Atencio | TEDxUniversityofNevada
MARIANA ATENCIO: Be Authentic – Stop Covering
MARIANA ATENCIO: Being Human Unites Us

Books As an Amazon Associate, Gravity earns from qualifying purchases.


“Not many speakers can connect and engage with an audience like Mariana Atencio can. Her keynote, 'The Power of Authenticity' impacted our members on a very personal level and left them feeling empowered! Ms. Atencio's message set the tone for the rest of the conference and left our attendees wanting more. For example, during our closing celebration two of our volunteer leaders referenced their 'What makes you perfectly you?' cards during their onstage remarks. Book Mariana - it will be the smartest decision you make for your conference or event.”

Executive Vice President, Florida Apartment Association

“Mariana's keynote was a profound journey into the essence of authenticity. One of the most powerful takeaways from Mariana's talk was the idea that our differences are our strengths and they can help us shine in every aspect of our lives. Thank you, Mariana, for your inspiring vulnerability and for guiding each of us to better embrace our roots. Your words have resonated deeply with our colleagues, sparking conversations about authenticity, identity and cultural heritage.”

VP, Wealth Planning Analytics, Edelman Financial Engines

“I am thrilled to share my highest praise for Mariana, who hosted our company's 2023 Convention. Mariana's performance as the event's host exceeded all expectations, and her contributions were invaluable. Throughout the event, Mariana showcased her exceptional talent for engaging and captivating our audience. Her energy and enthusiasm were boundless, creating an electric atmosphere that resonated with everyone in attendance. Most importantly, she was able to think on her feet, listen, and absorb the right takeaways to weave one keynote with the next, creating the perfect throughline for our summit.”

CEO, Outreach

“Mariana Atencio brought such energy and honesty to our company-wide event. Mariana's authenticity allows her to connect with others almost immediately. Thank you for providing us with the tools to be resilient and proud of what makes us Perfectly Unique!”

Director, Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, Rapid7

“For the last two years, Mariana has been the host of AT&T’s annual Hispanic Heritage Month events, celebrating employees’ authenticity and contributions toward the customers and communities we proudly serve. Mariana brings employees’ stories to life through her unique engagement and connection with our teams while creating a welcoming, energetic, and memorable atmosphere. Her dynamic stage presence, storytelling, and facilitation skills have positively impacted our events and attendees. We appreciate her commitment to amplifying our brand’s values as well as her partnership and collaboration in delivering unique experiences that support our mission of connecting people to greater possibilities!”

Chief Strategy and Development Officer, AT&T Inc.

“Mariana's authentic, relatable, engaging style enabled her to immediately connect with our audience. Through a series of stories, she shared uplifting, relevant, and empowering learnings that all of us can embrace as leaders.”

VP, Google Cloud Consulting

“Mariana provided some wonderful lessons and insights into her journey and how each of us can celebrate and share what makes us different. It was a fantastic opportunity for our employees to be inspired and to learn more.”

Director, Global Executive & Employee Communications, Microsoft

“Mariana was powerful on stage, engaging, thought provoking and the perfect speaker for our flagship global annual conference held in Miami. She was such a pleasure to work with that she ended up interviewing and moderating two very critical panels for the agenda. Mariana’s experience and professionalism will make any company that chooses to work with her look great.”

Director, Marketing & Communications Head, Citi Private Bank

“It was a pleasure working with Mariana Atencio and her Team during Bacardi’s Spirit Forward event. Not only was she highly engaged and accessible from the very beginning of the planning process, but flexible and open to ensure that her speech flowed well with the Summit’s overarching theme. She was inspirational, motivational and real, and we received wonderful feedback from the attendees. We would be happy to work with her again.”

Senior Brand Manager, Bacardi USA, Inc.

“In a time when dramatic change has brought about immense uncertainty, Mariana’s C.O.N.T.R.O.L. framework provides tangible guidance on how to move forward with intention to build a life that honors our unique purpose. This complete framework helps you evaluate your life with clarity, empower yourself to break through ruts, and make meaningful progress. It’s a true gift to be able to share this framework with our employees.”

Director of Practice Management & Co-Founder of Latinos @SAP Concur

“Given the uncertainty of the post-pandemic world, you and your organization are in the best hands by hiring Mariana and her GoLike team. We have booked Mariana for motivational keynotes aimed at employees, voice-over work, community programs, and social media campaigns and she has over delivered every time. Her creativity and attention to detail will make your brand stand out in a unique way! She is very dynamic and great at keeping the audience engaged.”

Senior Manager, Ford Motor Company

“Mariana did an outstanding job as host of our 2023 PepsiCo Growth Summit. She was able to instantly connect with our executive audience, engage with the roster of speakers and to tie the whole event together with her energy and insightful comments. She was a pleasure to work with and I look forward to having her participate in future events with our company!”

SVP & General Manager, Hispanic Business Unit, PepsiCo

“SPARK Kindness is a nonprofit organization based in Natick, Massachusetts. Our mission-work building a kind, resilient and welcoming community for all is rooted in interconnection and belonging. When we were introduced to Mariana Atencio, our team immediately felt connection with her story and frame, and the inspirational and motivational messages she shares about authenticity and the power of being YOU. We were honored to have the opportunity to welcome Mariana to our virtual neighborhood for our first program offered in Spanish, with simultaneous English and American Sign Language (ASL) interpretation. Having Mariana deliver her program in Spanish not only made it accessible and inclusive, but it also demonstrated the tremendous pride and strength Mariana celebrates in being multilingual and multicultural. We look forward to working with team GOLike again soon!”

Founder & Executive Director, SPARK Kindness

“Mariana is a true professional on set – researched, rehearsed, and resilient. Her passion, introspection, and dedication to the assignment(s) are exactly what Executive Producers and Executive partners dream of, with the quality of audience engagement speaking for itself.”

Executive Producer, Accenture Productions