Cocktails & Conversation 2023 with Samara Bay Event Highlights

Author Samara Bay (left), BRA Founder, Carrie Murray (right

I’m just in AWE of Samara Bay and cannot believe how lucky we are to have had Cocktails & Conversation with her. Samara is a sought-after speech coach, speaker and thought leader whose coaching clients include top actors in Hollywood, C-suite execs and thought leaders, candidates for U.S. Congress, and celebrities presenting at award shows and at the UN. And, ummm…she just became a BRA MEMBER!

Have you devoured her book yet? It’s called Permission to Speak: How to Change What Power Sounds Like, Starting with You! and each Cocktails & Conversation attendee left with a copy. Here’s a synopsis:

“Getting heard is a tricky business: It’s what you say and how you show up, filtered through your audience’s assumptions and biases—and maybe even your own. For women, people of color, immigrants, and queer folks, there’s often a dissonance between how you speak and how we collectively think powerful people should speak: like the wealthy white men who’ve historically been in charge. But, fortunately, the sound of power is changing.”

Now that you’re all caught up, we began the evening in typical BRA event fashion — so many hugs, so many great connections — new and reuniting, and so many laughs. Although the weather was overcast and gloomy, all I felt was warm and fuzzy, getting to have so many incredible people in my backyard!

BRA Members, DaisyMae ValValkenburgh and Meredith Yinger

Chef Austin Boos did not disappoint. I mean…honestly…did you try the curry chicken salad lettuce cups? What about the ahi tuna and cucumber canapes?! Don’t get me started on those look-too-good-to-eat (almost) grazing boards. I mean, it was seriously the stuff of magazine shoots. ::Chef’s kiss::

Austin’s food philosophy centers around fresh, seasonal ingredients…and it’s so colorful! Check out her gorgeous grazing boards on Instagram!

As we moved further out onto the patio, we were met by Maya C. Entwistle’s bubbly personality and libations! She crafted gorgeous frozen roses that melted into the most delightful bellini’s when mixed with her perfectly crisp champagne. (Side note: Maya is the Founder of Bubles, a high-end Champagne catering company and custom-made Champagne gift box retailer!)

We were totally content sipping the night away!

BRA Members, Dr. Cindy Tsai and Robyn Reynolds

Finally, it came time for the main event.

As Samara and I made our way to our hot pink velvet seats, I honestly got giddy.

I was so ready for this conversation. I was bursting with the opportunity to hear what Samara would say to our group and watch the impact she would have. I couldn’t wait to have her share this message, out loud, standing — and speaking — in her power.

As she shared wisdom from the book and broke down old stories we’ve been taught to repeat to ourselves about what power sounds like and our “place” in that hierarchy, I watched attendees’ posture change. It was like the paradigm shift Samara was challenging us all with was manifesting in a congruent shift of our physical bodies.

Samara was so generous with Q+A time, inviting people with asks to be specific to their personal circumstances so she could best offer advice that would be immediately implementable and impactful for their lives and voices.

I eventually had to wrap things up, because we could have kept going all night. But I knew everyone would be in good hands, getting to take home a piece of Samara’s mind contained within the chapters of her revolutionary book.

I can’t wait to see what you all do with your newly acquired knowledge and how you’ll challenge the status quo.

Here’s to speaking up and speaking out! ????

Last but not least, you can get a feel for the fantastic vibe at this event from these gorgeous photos by photographer Cindy Green.

What’s Next?

We’re THRILLED to be bringing a piece of in-person Programming to our BRA Members and greater #BRAnetwork community just to the south in Orange County, CA on September 9, 2023! Be the first to get all the details on the next Cocktails & Conversation event by saving your seat!

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