Safety and Second Chances Specialist
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. •
• 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
Bachelor of Science – International Business, Northwest Missouri State University
- 17 years as a Professional Speaker
- Hired by many Fortune 500 hundred clients
- One of four survivor’s of 1995 airplane crash that killed 160 people- including her parents.
- Creator of proprietary Second Chance Living Concept
- Tens of thousands of people have heard her story and her message
- Worked nearly a decade in high-level sales in the pharmaceutical and medical software industries
- A record-breaking, multimillion-dollar producer
- Youngest female and sole Latino account executive at Cerner Corporation
- Established a scholarship for minority students at Northwest Missouri State University in memory of her parents.
- Philanthropic supporter for the National MPS Society — an organization that provides research grants and support to families living with terminally ill children.
- Make-A-Wish North Texas Regional Council
- Abbott Laboratories, Cardiovascular Specialty Sales Executive
- National MPS Society, Federal Legislative Advocate and Public Relations
- Advocacy Committee and Public Relations Committee Cerner Corporation
- St. Catherine of Sienna and St. Rita Catholic Community, Catechist
- Northwest Missouri State University, Foundation Board Member
What Makes Me Sparkle!
I create the energy I want reciprocated from an audience. Whether it be a virtual interaction or in person, my clients have commented that my presentations resonate with them because
1) I’m GENUINE (they’ve told me it feels like they are having a one on one conversation with a friend — not a flashy production or performance compared to other speakers they have contracted in the past)
2) Love being a FIRST (first female speaker ever booked for their organization, first Latino speaker they’ve ever booked, first non-celebrity speaker they’ve ever booked). Breaking those barriers and connecting with people with the right message makes them realize that quality content does not need to come from someone who looks like them, thinks like them or have the same experiences as them.
3) Nerds rule! I have an insatiable thirst for knowledge and consider it part of my job to constantly learn learn learn. Whether it be researching companies highlighted in investment commentary shows on CNBC, taking organizational psychology courses online from Yale, taking stunning virtual art museum tours from museums around the world, and immersing myself in documentaries — I am always expanding my knowledge base and weaving those interesting facets into my client’s presentations. My personal philosophy is day you stop learning is the day you stop truly living (you have taken the route of just “existing” when you no longer care to learn).
• 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.
“Thank you for such an inspiring story. There were moments I had tears in my eyes and at the end, I stood in my office, giving you a well-deserved standing ovation. You are indeed an inspiration!!”
“Mercedes delivered an interactive customized workplace safety keynote address that was both relevant and inspiring to our conference attendees. The story of her plane crash, the official investigation and her ability to thread relevant workplace safety principles into her presentation was a big success. Conference attendees rated her program very high in our post conference evaluations with good reason. She delivered a dynamic presentation that truly made an impact.”
“Words cannot describe how much your speech touched my heart. I’ve seen many speakers in my lifetime, but I’ve never been as moved as I was last night.”
“Mercedes did an AMAZING job at leading a virtual event, it felt as though she was there in the room with us. She took the additional time to learn about our organization and meet with us to discuss who we are, what we do and our safety culture as it stands. [Her message] is used in conversation around the office even a month later. She is such a joy to work with but also a joy to listen to – we loved her high energy and relevance to the work we do and helping highlight the importance of safety and the dangers of complacency.”