Jana's Speeches


       Jana Bommersbach has given thousands of speeches over her career, on everything from her book on Winnie Ruth Judd, to the problems of domestic violence, to politics to overcoming the problems of communicating.
      She is direct, pithy, funny, engaging, entertaining and informative.
      Her appearances garner rave reviews:


  • "You were outstanding," Arizona's Corporate Volunteer Council, for speech on getting involved in your community, 2002.

  • "We've never had such a response…" Maricopa County Library after a 2001 speech on Winnie Ruth Judd.

  • "Jana always excels. As a key-note speaker or Mistress of Ceremony, Jana connects with her audiences on a very personal level."  Paula Cullison, Arizona Women's Partnership that gave Jana its 2009 Humanitarian Award.

  • "We are thrilled to feature Jana as a speaker/author/journalist at Arizona Historical Society museums around the state. She is an asset to Arizona's past, present and future."  Society Educator Megan Gately.

  • "Your presentation was riveting...." 2002 Domestic Violence Conference, Mesa Community College, Mesa, Arizona.

  • "Jana is a dynamo. She speaks about writing from experience, with clarity, wit and about as much energy as a room can hold...."  Peter Turchi, Director of Virginia G. Piper Center for Creative Writing, Arizona State University.

  • "Jana's passion for delving into the truth comes through in each word she speaks. Your attention is held as she unwraps the stories, layer by layer.."  Cindi Reiss, President of Phoenix Writers Club.

  • "Chico State loves you…what a great speaker, role model, inspiring career adviser you are."  (After guest lecturing for a week at the California college in 2002.)

Contact Jana

Jana Bommersbach




Topics of Jana's Speeches

WILD,WILD,WILD ARIZONA:  From Wyatt Earp to a modern day Calamity Jane, this wicked and wild romp through Arizona's colorful history will delight, inform, tickle and leave them wanting more! Jana borrows from both her work for True West Magazine (covering the Old West) and her work for Phoenix Magazine (writing about contemporary Arizona) to put the 48th state in perspective. You'll learn why this small state has had an inordinate influence on American politics; how it captured the nation's first and its largest public works projects; how the state once tried to pass a "dildo bill"; and the inside scoop on Geronimo. This speech is a perfect introduction to Arizona.
THE TRUNK MURDERESS: WINNIE RUTH JUDD: Jana's definitive book on this 1931 murder case that riveted the nation—first published by Simon & Schuster and now reissued by Poisoned Pen Press—never fails to fascinate audiences. While history said Winnie Ruth Judd was a murderer and a butcher, Jana's exhaustive investigation shows she was neither—that Arizona took 40 years of her life for a crime she didn't commit. It appeals to anyone interested in crime, women's rights, mystery, history, fairness, intrigue and justice. This is the book all of Arizona read in 2010 as it was awarded the state's highest literary prize—selected as the ONEBOOKAZ by the State Library. Jana traveled throughout Arizona in the spring, making 33 presentations to nearly 2,000 people in libraries and bookstores. Murder and mystery don't get more compelling than this story.
THE INSIDE STORY OF “BONES IN THE DESERT: Jana discusses her 2008 book for St. Martin's Press on the recent murder and secret desert burial of Loretta Bowersock, a beautiful and accomplished businesswoman whose death sounds alarms about “elder abuse”--the fastest growing segment of domestic violence in the nation. This is a heartbreaking story, as her famous daughter (then a major businesswoman in Arizona) searched in vain for 13 months to find her mother's buried body. As Jana says, “My dream is that women suffering from elder abuse—whether physical, mental or sexual—will recognize themselves in Loretta and walk out the door. After a lifetime of abuse, you can't confront your abuser and hope to win—if only Loretta had realized that.”
HELLRAISING WOMEN OF THE OLD WEST: Although history tries to tell is ONLY the men settled the Old West, that bit of ridiculous nonsense is shattered by Jana's verbal tour through some of the amazing women who made all the difference. Any woman who came West in the 1800s had to be full of grit and spit to survive--and Jana has collected the story of dozens of women who prove it. How about Donaldina Cameron, who saved 3,000 Chinese slave girls in San Francisco; or Sacagawea, America's first female explorer who twice saved the Lewis and Clark Expedition; or Lozen, an Apache medicine woman who fought for her people alongside Gernonimo; or Biddy Mason, a former slave who gained her freedom in a landmark case and became a California leader; or Pearl Hart, the West's last stagecoach bandid who was a hoot, humiliating the men who tried to incarcerate her; or Luisa Ronstadt Espinel, Linda Ronstadt's great-aunt who toured the world as an artistic interpreter of Spanish Culture; or Vera McGinnia, a rodeo pioneer who became an international star.You'll never think of the Old West the same again!