Find speakers by:
Request more info

Samra Zafar

Leading Expert on Authentic Leadership, DEI, and Mental Health

Samra Zafar
Speaker Reel
I Was an Abused Child-Bride: A Journey of Survival and Self-Discovery
Samra Zafar
Speaker Reel
I Was an Abused Child-Bride: A Journey of Survival and Self-Discovery

Renowned for her insightful dialogue on cultural change, Samra Zafar combines scientific research with her corporate experience and hard-earned life lessons to shift our understanding of wellness and illustrate the transformative benefits of belonging. A bestselling author, physician-in-training, and leading corporate consultant, she specializes in DEI strategy, mental health, and authentic leadership, and shares valuable tools for building authentic human connection and fostering inclusive spaces.

After escaping a decade of abuse living as a child bride in Canada, Zafar has become a beacon of hope for those facing exclusion and abuse. She is a four-time TEDx speaker and the bestselling author of A Good Wife: Escaping the Life I Never Chose, named one of CBC’s Best Books of 2019 and a top 2019 read by The Washington Post. She is currently writing her second book, Unconditional, which explores science-based strategies to unlearn limiting beliefs and live a fuller, unconditional life.

Previously an executive in financial services, Zafar is currently pursuing a medical degree at McMaster’s DeGroote School of Medicine, specializing in psychiatry. She is also the founder and executive director of Brave Beginnings, a registered charity that provides mentorship to survivors of abuse. Her work has been featured in several national and international media outlets, including The Huffington Post, Harvard Medical School’s Primary Care Review, CTV, CBC, Global News, the Globe and Mail, the Toronto Star, and more.

A sought-after keynote speaker and DEI consultant, Zafar’s past clients have included UNICEF; United Way; Yale University; HRPA; Amnesty International; TD; Adidas; Art of Leadership; Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada, and several other non-profits, corporations, government agencies, and universities around the world. She has been recognized twice as one of Canada’s “Top 100 Most Powerful Women” and named one of the “Top 25 Most Inspirational Women” in Canada and one of the “Top 25 Canadian Immigrants”.

Zafar is a graduate of the University of Toronto with a bachelor’s and master’s degree in economics. She currently sits on the board of Women’s College Hospital Foundation and is a celebrated ambassador at Plan International Canada.

Speaking topics

Presentations listed below include in-person and virtual keynotes, as well as workshops, fireside chats, and other presentation formats.

Need assistance?

Client reviews

  • Samra was wonderful. Her sessions were very well received by our audience. She was engaging and captivating and did a really great job of tying her keynote to the IWD theme of Embrace Equity. We had very positive feedback about her session from all who attended. She was also a pleasure to work with, very responsive and was just wonderful in every way.

  • Thank you for attending and sharing your story: you were passionate and honest, and you were able to help your audience share and understand your experiences. We received very positive feedback from staff and clients regarding your participation as our guest speaker. Because of your strength and courage, I have every expectation that Brave Beginnings will be a great success which will help many people be bold for change. Keep up your amazing work!

    Thank you once again for being part of our event.

  • We had the pleasure of welcoming Samra to celebrate International Women’s Day at our Mississauga Office on March 8th. Samra shared her inspiring journey from oppression to empowerment, which she was able to deliver perfectly to align with this year’s event theme of Press for Progress. We’ve received nothing but positive feedback about Samra’s story and her engagement with our employees and couldn’t be more pleased with the response.

  • When Samra spoke on behalf of The Citizen’s Foundation, there was pindrop silence as she brought us into her world and told us how her thirst to be educated changed her life path.  In thirty minutes we cried with empathy, were angered by the injustices and jubilant for her triumphant finale.  Her ability to dig deep and tell her story so honestly coupled with the poignant message of supporting education for underprivileged children is a global issue that we can all be behind to make our world a better place. As a speaker Samra was able to research our theme and create a narrative which is a testimonial to her combination of brilliance and professionalism. Our evening by all measures was a success

  • Samra’s keynote was inspirational, and she is an amazing and genuine person. We have received wonderful feedback from the attendees. Everyone enjoyed the event and loved listening to her speak.

You might also like

Related speakers.