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Marra B. Gad

Marra B. Gad

Award-Winning Author, Speaker & Storyteller

Marra B. Gad

Award-Winning Author, Speaker & Storyteller


Marra B. Gad is an award-winning author, speaker and storyteller based in Los Angeles. Marra began her career as a musical theatre actress, and learned early the power of storytelling through her work on stage. She has played a wide range of roles including Ron in Hair, King Herod in Jesus Christ Superstar, Ronette in Little Shop of Horrors, and Glinda in The Wiz. But perhaps her most informative work came as a member of Chicago’s HealthWorks Theatre, which used musical theatre and humor to educate people about HIV/AIDS through their ground-breaking play The Wizard of A.I.D.S., in which Marra toured the Midwest as “The Wicked Witch.”

As president of Egad! Productions, Marra oversees the development and production of scripted television series and films. Marra has supported critically acclaimed films including GRACE IS GONE and THE INEVITABLE DEFEAT OF MISTER AND PETE, which was screened by First Lady Michelle Obama at The White House. Egad! Productions is currently in development on a number of projects including the film adaptation of Robert Sharenow’s young adult novel, My Mother The Cheerleader. And her first television series, FRANKLY SPEAKING, a 30-minute comedy inspired by Marra’s dating misadventures as a middle-aged, biracial, Jewish woman is currently in development.

A gifted storyteller, Marra is deeply dedicated to expanding and exploring belonging across multiple spectrums, offering personal insights about overcoming bias, and finding peace in a world that does not always embrace her. A grateful child of adoption, Marra speaks internationally about her own transracial adoption in 1970, and her experiences being Black and Ashkenazi Jewish through the lens of her debut memoir, THE COLOR OF LOVE: A Story of a Mixed-Race Jewish Girl, winner of the 2020 Midwest Book Award for Autobiography/Memoir.

On the heels of the success of her book, Marra has become a highly sought-after public speaker. With her focus rooted in expanding the idea of what it means to belong in the 21st century, Marra speaks to audiences of all ages about a number of topics including adoption, racism, bias, and mental health. Marra proudly holds a BA from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and an MA in Jewish History from Baltimore Hebrew Institute at Towson University. She was a 2022 Honoree for the Women of Reform Judaism’s Women’s Empowerment Award.

Speaker Videos

Checking Boxes

Choosing Change

Sameness is Detrimental

Are We Lifting Other Women Up

Best Version of Myself

Claiming Joy

Ten Minutes

Hard to Hear, Hard to Say

It Matters

Loving All of Me

Reflecting the World As It Actually Is

The Power of Voice

Speech Topics

DEIB Program: Intersectionality & Belonging at Work

Award-winning author and storyteller Marra B. Gad has been sought after for her profound insights and expertise leading conversations about belonging, equity, inclusion, supporting organizations and companies in their goal of building greater acceptance and connection in the workplace. Sharing her personal experience as a Black and Ashkenazi Jewish child adopted by a White and Jewish family in the 1970s, Gad unpacks the toll of racism, bias, and rejection on mental health, offering an unparalleled perspective on the reality of corporate DEIB efforts. With a strong focus on actionable takeaways and a desire to help create environments where everyone can safely be their authentic selves, Gad tailors her talk to each audience and focuses on a powerful theme: how to expand the idea of what it means to belong and come together to embrace our differences and build more welcoming spaces.

Author Talk: The Color of Love

Rooted in her award-winning memoir, THE COLOR OF LOVE: A Story of a Mixed-Race Jewish Girl, author and advocate Marra B. Gad shares the powerful story of her experiences being born Black and Ashkenazi Jewish and adopted into a white Jewish family. Winner of the 2020 Midwest Book Award for autobiography, Gad is ‘a grateful child of adoption’, a gifted storyteller, and a thought leader on transracial adoption, the expansiveness of identity and what it means to find belonging.

The Power & Pain of Alzheimer’s & Caregiving

Award-winning author Marra B. Gad chronicles her experience as a caregiver for her great Aunt Nette, who was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, in her memoir THE COLOR OF LOVE. Gad overcame internal familial racism and a strained relationship with her aunt to provide this care and shares profound insights about the transformational and challenging nature of this disease on both the patient and for their loved ones. Gad’s message of resilience and her focus on embracing the possibility of change is uplifting and inspiring for groups of all kinds.

Adoption Advocacy: A Constantly Evolving Experience

Award-winning author Marra B. Gad believes that families are built out of love. As a grateful child of a transracial adoption, Gad celebrates her family and speaks intimately to the constantly evolving experience of adoption and being raised in a transracial family. As a Black and Ashkenazi Jewish child adopted by a White and Jewish family in the 1970s, Gad speaks to her experiences navigating her world and shares an uplifting message of embracing both love and our differences to find belonging.

Intersectionality & Creating Belonging in the Jewish Community

Born Black and Ashkenazi Jewish and adopted into an observant white Jewish family, Marra B. Gad has spent her lifetime seeking safe spaces where the whole of her identity is embraced. In a world that still clings to the notion that Jews are white and Black people are Muslim or Christian, Gad views her intersectional identities as a gift; allowing her to help build bridges and expand belonging and understanding about the vastness of identity withing the Jewish community. In this inspiring program, she shares her experiences navigating the world - from the synagogue to summer camp to Israel to antisemitism - and helps organizations and groups find actionable ways to expand belonging and embrace the beautiful vastness of identity in the Jewish community.

Walk A Mile In My Identity

Equal parts one-woman show and intimate conversation, join award-winning author and storyteller Marra B. Gad for a day in the life of what it is like to navigate being Black and Ashkenazi Jewish in a world that does not always understand that both can exist in the same person. With humor, vulnerability and raw honesty, Gad takes the audience on a journey through a typical day in her life, and then expands the experience to include conversation with the hosts and audience, building a greater understanding around the power and critical importance of authenticity, belonging, safety and acceptance in our world.

Identity & Authenticity: The College Years

College is a place that, for many, is equated with freedom; freedom to explore, expand and challenge our belief systems. And in the 21st century that certainly includes identity. In this program created for college students, award-winning author and story-teller Marra B. Gad speaks directly to what it means to be authentic in a world that can often pressure us to conform. Sharing her personal stories about what it means to navigate the world as a Black and Ashkenazi Jewish woman, she also speaks to the unique challenges and gifts that intersectional and minority identities bring. A believer that there is room for all of us just as we are, Gad speaks to how expand belonging on campus and to create safe spaces for students to be their most authentic selves.

How to Speak To Our Children About Identity

The 2020 Census tells an important story about the shifting dynamics around identity and family, including a 46% increase in people identifying as “other/mixed/multiracial.” In this special program for educators, belonging advocate and award-winning author Marra B. Gad works directly with educators to help navigate what it means to no longer check one identity box. Focused on actionable takeaways, Gad speaks to the constantly evolving need cultivate belonging in the classroom and offer students of all ages safe and healthy ways to express their identities in the classroom.