Mercedes Ramirez Johnson

Safety and Second Chances Specialist

In person -$10,000 – $20,000 Virtual $10,000

Learn more about what makes
Mercedes Ramirez Johnson

Colorful – Competent – Creative – Captivating


  • Safety: Don’t Count on 2nd Chances

    This one-of-a-kind presentation puts safety into the proper perspective and vividly demonstrates that the mistakes these pilots made are the same mistakes that anyone, in virtually any industry, can make on any given workday. Using the factual account of the crash of Flight 965 and safety investigation findings as anchors, Mercedes drives home the profound impact of individual choices and the devastating results of ignoring safety procedures. Participants will distinctly understand the difference between knowing about safety and putting safety into action.

    Captivated audiences frequently comment that Mercedes’ true-life story of tragedy, survival and recovery is unlike any safety presentation they’ve ever experienced. A Hispanic woman in a male-dominated market, Mercedes is hailed as a fresh voice in the safety industry. Her genuine and personable style, combined with her knowledge of safety issues, ensures this presentation and its lessons won’t be forgotten.

    Participants leave Mercedes’ presentations with a whole new mindset about safety, as well as tools they can put to use immediately on the job.

    Key takeaways include:

    • An acute understanding that safety is a mentality not a mandate
    • A commitment to personal accountability for safety
    • The inescapable truth that experience and familiarity are no guarantee and can, in fact, create a dangerous complacency and false sense of security
    • The hazards of disregarding standard operating procedures and taking “harmless” shortcuts
    • The dangers of “going through the motions” and the importance of being fully intentional and engaged in the task at hand
    • The significance of Situational Awareness and cross-accountability

  • Get It Right Today, Not Tomorrow

    This presentation serves as a wake-up call. An eye-opening presentation that won’t be forgotten, it powerfully dispels the notion that there will always be a tomorrow in which we can finish today’s important yet unfinished business. Weaving her inspirational story of tragedy, survival and recovery with solid business content, Mercedes challenges and changes the way people think and act. Her up-front dialogue, true-life examples and on-the-job application of real-world lessons moves audiences to work and live with intention.


    Participants leave Mercedes’ presentations energized with:
    • A new sense of urgency and purpose and a renewed passion for work
    • Personal ownership and accountability for their actions and results
    • A blueprint for working and living with intention
    • A big-picture mindset and a clearer perspective of their daily challenges
    • An inescapable understanding of Situational Awareness and the profound difference one person can make
    • Insight into the inner motivators that will keep them committed and engaged from within
    • The three choices every individual can make that will have an immediate and positive impact on their job and the organization

  • Diversity and Inclusion – Getting it Right for Everyone

    Building a genuinely inclusive culture in our workplaces, communities and schools is imperative for shared success and establishing common values. In the past few years, the spotlight on diversity, inclusion and equity programs have been shining brightly. Is your organization checking off the “diversity” boxes and operating within the status quo? Or has the spotlight of D&I initiatives transformed into authentic organizational values? Do leaders truly value the impact of a fully inclusive environment or do they still view D&I through an antiquated lens? As a first-generation Latina American, Mercedes has experienced firsthand the difference felt on the receiving end of tokenism versus actual genuine inclusive support and leadership. No stranger to being “the first woman to…” or the “first latina to…” in her professional and community roles, Mercedes weaves lessons of resilience, purpose and empathy in her customized D&I programs. Beyond being the right thing to do, inclusive minded leaders are better able to navigate and win the constantly evolving workforce, client base and environment. •

    Key takeaways:

    • Greater clarity about what inclusion means and how it informs individual, group, and organizational performance.
    • Identify fundamental barriers to inclusion.
    • Take actionable models and definitions back to your organization to better inform your inclusion efforts.
    • Get comfortable in embracing that D&I is vital to the employee experience and is a measurable strategy to increase retention, employee and supplier loyalty, and mental health



Speaking Demo


In 1995, Mercedes Ramirez Johnson narrowly survived a commercial airplane crash that killed 160 people, including her parents. As one of only four survivors of this tragedy, she vowed that she would make her second chance at life count…and that she has – not only for herself, but also for the tens of thousands of people who have heard her story and her message.


Transformational, passionate, inspiring and genuine. That is how clients and audiences describe Mercedes and her programs. Many speakers who have overcome great adversity are deeply inspiring, but rarely offer their audiences more than momentary motivation. Her   proprietary Second Chance Living™ concept, an innovative mindset and approach with a proven track record, offers participants a blueprint for change along with specific tools they can use immediately in their professional and personal endeavors. In addition, her message that experience is no guarantee is having a tangible and powerful impact on safety initiatives and programs across the country.   Mercedes presents to companies, associations, faith-based organizations, government agencies and higher education institutions across the U.S. and Canada. Her clients include some of America’s most respected organizations, such as General Electric, Verizon, PricewaterhouseCoopers, NASA, ExxonMobil, Chevron, and numerous higher education institutions and faith-based organizations.


Mercedes and her story have been the subject of considerable national and international media coverage. Her extensive media experience includes appearances on ABC’s PrimeTime, The BBC, National Geographic Channel, Discovery Health Channel and as a recurring guest on nationally syndicated daytime television talk shows. In addition, numerous national magazines and major-market newspapers have run cover stories and special-interest pieces about her.


Mercedes has received national awards for her work, influence and dedication to improving the lives of others. She was recognized as one of the country’s top young Hispanic up-and-comers by People Magazine’s Spanish edition, People en Español. INROADS, Inc., an international organization dedicated to developing talented minority youth, voted her Alumni of the Year.



• Discovery Health Channel
• People Magazine (Spanish Edition)
• Good Morning America
• The BBC (featured interviews in plane crash documentaries)
• The National Geographic (featured interviews in plane crash documentaries)
• Primetime The Learning Channel
• (featured interviews in plane crash documentaries)
• The Kansas City Star
• The Miami Herald
• Fort Worth Star Telegram
• The Dallas Morning News
• The Guardian


  • Alumni of the Year, by INROADS
  • Volunteer of the Year for Christ Haven for Children, a home for neglected children in Texas.



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