Cathy Ngo – WORD Podcast

WORD PODCAST: Women on Racism and Discrimination

Cathy Ngo: Amplifying Diverse Voices and Fighting Systemic Injustice


In this thought-provoking interview, Cathy Ngo, chief storyteller, entrepreneur, and advocate for diversity and inclusion, sheds light on the impact of systemic injustices, particularly in the underrepresentation of diverse voices. As the founder of Keynote Worthy, a platform dedicated to amplifying marginalised speakers and thinkers, Cathy discusses the challenges she has faced and the inspiring journey she has embarked on to address the lack of diversity within keynote speaking events. Through her work, Cathy aims to empower individuals and create opportunities for them to share their unique stories and experiences.


Addressing Systemic Injustice and Personal Impact

Cathy emphasises that systemic injustices affect individuals across all levels of society, irrespective of their privilege. Recognising her own privileged position as an able-bodied, cisgender woman, Cathy highlights the importance of empathy, open conversations, and respectful disagreement. She acknowledges that it is essential to embrace and celebrate diverse perspectives to foster a more inclusive society. Sharing her personal experiences of feeling ashamed of her Asian heritage and striving to fit into predominantly white spaces, Cathy emphasises the significance of recognising and addressing internalised racism and unconscious biases.


The Birth of Keynote Worthy

Driven by frustration with the lack of diversity in keynote speaking events, Cathy found keynote worthy. She firmly believes that true learning and growth occur when we hear from individuals with different perspectives and backgrounds. Cathy underscores the importance of providing platforms for diverse voices and dismantling the barriers that prevent underrepresented individuals from being heard. She also discusses the issue of unpaid speaking opportunities and advocates for fair compensation for speakers’ knowledge, expertise, and thought leadership.


Navigating Challenges and Promoting Self-Care: Cathy candidly shares the emotional burnout she experiences while listening to others’ stories and coaching aspiring speakers. She highlights the need for self-care and boundary-setting to avoid absorbing excessive emotional energy. Cathy has learned to prioritise her mental health and recognises that self-care is crucial when advocating for others. Through keynote worthy, she not only aims to uplift marginalised voices but also inspires individuals to respect their own worth and demand fair compensation for their contributions.


Inspiring Change and Future Outlook

Reflecting on her journey, Cathy discusses the positive impact keynote worthy has made, enabling marginalised individuals to gain speaking opportunities they may not have otherwise received. She emphasises the significance of recognising and rectifying pay disparities within the speaking industry. Cathy acknowledges the ongoing struggle for equitable representation and urges society to amplify marginalised voices and challenge existing norms. She encourages individuals to respect their own worth and advocates for fair treatment and compensation.


As we conclude this interview, Cathy Ngo’s dedication to creating change and fostering diversity within the speaking industry stands as a powerful example of how one person’s efforts can have a significant impact. By recognising the privileges we possess, amplifying underrepresented voices, and advocating for fair compensation, we can begin to dismantle systemic injustices and create a more inclusive and equal world for all.

About Cathy Ngo

Cathy Ngo (she/her/hers) is an entrepreneur, sought-after keynote speaker, and podcaster. As the founder of Keynoteworthy, Cathy is committed to tackling the critical issue of speaker diversity, and her platform has quickly become the go-to resource for event organisers looking to book speakers from a wide range of backgrounds and perspectives.


With her extensive Human Resources and Employee Communications background, Cathy brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to her work. She has advised some of the world’s largest corporations on people strategy and transformation, and her thought leadership is regularly featured in top media outlets around the globe.


As the host of the award-winning podcast, Hire Potential with Indeed, Cathy brings her unique perspective to important conversations about the challenges and opportunities facing today’s workforce. With her engaging style and deep knowledge of the subject matter, she has quickly become an influential voice in the field.


Outside of work, Cathy likes to explore new challenges, from stand-up comedy to birdwatching. She’s a busy mother of four (two of the furry variety) and a proud advocate for mental health as an Ambassador for the Gidget Foundation.

You can connect with Cathy on LinkedIn

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