© 2016 — Top Story Leadership

Ria’s story

Ria is a motivational leadership speaker, author, and a world class coach who has a unique ability to help people develop and achieve their life and career goals, and guide them in building the habits and discipline to achieve their personal view of greatness.  Ria brings a wealth of personal experience in working with clients to achieve their personal goals and aspirations in a way that few coaches have achieved. 


Ria’s background includes more than ten years in administrative healthcare, including several years in management and later, Director of Compliance and Regulatory Affairs for a large healthcare organization.  Ria’s responsibilities included oversight of thousands of organizational policies, organizational compliance with all State and Federal regulations, and responsibility for several million dollars in Medicare appeals. 


Like many, Ria faced adversity in life. Raised on an isolated farm in Alabama, she was sexually abused by her father from age 12 – 19. Desperate to escape, she left home at 19 without a job, a car, or even a high school diploma. Ria learned to be resilient, and not just survive, but thrive. She worked her way through school, an MBA, and eventually resigned from her career in the corporate world to pursue a passion for helping others achieve success. Learn more about Ria’s story of overcoming in her books, Beyond Bound and Broken and Ria’s Story From Ashes to Beauty.


Now a motivational speaker, coach, and author of 8 books, she co-founded Top Story Leadership, which offers leadership development, speaking, training, coaching, and consulting. Ria also coaches authors and speakers on writing, speaking, and more. 

Here’s what others have to say…

  • Thank you for sharing your story and reminding us to do the right thing for the right reason for the right people.

  • I truly enjoyed the encouraging words you had to share. I admire you so much and you are such a dynamic and motivational speaker. You are a true inspiration.

    Laura, attendee
    Auburn Women's Club
  • You don’t know me but reading your story has changed my life forever and though it has been a slow on going process, I am seeing it was much needed !!

    I just wanted to say thank you !!

    Lisa M.
    Blog subscriber
  • “Ria was very inspiring. She gave the 2015 Graduating Class quality and truth at their Baccalaureate Service. Even though her past was one of tragedy, she delivered with such grace and poise. She sent out a clarion call for the students to be tenacious and have a positive attitude.”

  • “(Working with you in the Storyteller Program) ….It is one of the smartest things I have done for myself – personally and professionally! Thank you!”

    Sherina Hill
    Author and Speaker
  • Thank you Ria for bringing our conference to a close. You were definitely an inspiration to all of us! Awesome Job!

    Melinda, President
    Alabama Gerontological Society
  • ….it was awesome! Ria has a real gift. I came away with so many helpful tools! Thank you Ria.

  • Thank you for making a difference!

  • “Thank you for coming to speak to Christian Women’s Job Corp. You have a winning personality and thank you for the strong influence you have been in my life.”

    Clarice
    CWJC Lee County
  • “….Ria, I really enjoyed your class this morning. It provided some new perspectives for me and several ideas from which I can benefit….I will look forward to joining you for another class!

  • It’s possible you will change the world!

    Donovan Weldon
    Owner, Donovan Industrial
  • “We SOOOO  enjoyed your testimony Tuesday night.  I saw several people at church last night that made a point to stop and tell me how much they enjoyed you and your inspiration!!”

  • “You gave me wings and I will fly! Thanks my friend!”