Humble Yet Fierce

What the CIA taught me about life, leadership, and leaving a legacy.

Inspiring Courageous Faith

Award-winning author, presenter and leadership consultant Katy McQuaid spent more than three decades in the CIA, including 12 years living abroad. Her work in communities all over the world inspired her to share the art of humble leadership with her clients.

Katy serves as a beacon of hope and inspiration for anyone navigating change or challenging circumstances.

Just Released!

“Humble, Yet Fierce”

I wrote this book because I want to inspire others to know they can be successful even when they don’t fit the mold. It has been one of the hardest yet most rewarding things I’ve ever done. This book will speak  to women and leaders of all ages who want to grapple with making a life change and taking on a new position or responsibilities.

Limited-time Offer! Buy two and receive free shipping with the author’s autograph in each book.

Keynote and Speaking

About the Keynote

Katy McQuaid encourages her audiences to live in alignment with their purpose or reason for getting out of bed every day. Understanding one’s purpose keeps focus on the things that matter most and is important for success in professional and personal life, and for health and well-being. Katy inspires her audiences to live life with courage, grace and faith. She is a captivating storyteller with relevant and compelling life stories including her three decades leading large global operations with the CIA.

Keynote take-aways

  • Know your purpose. Your happiness depends on knowing what matters most to you and living in alignment with it.
  • Live with courage. The willingness to know yourself, your strengths and your values provides courage to move life in new directions.
  • Be fierce, step out in faith and see grace in action.









Colleges and Universities


Faith Based Organizations



“Katy’s story and speaking style are the perfect blend of captivating and inspiring. She makes people want to be better leaders, and better humans. I highly recommend booking Katy to speak at your event. Your audience will thank you.”

-Erin Weed
The Dig®

“Katy speaks with conviction, integrity, and inspiration from her rich experiences in the CIA and in other leadership contexts. It was so encouraging to have her challenge our community to live with purpose and grace. I am looking forward to the next time we will have to visit. Without hesitation I would urge any group to host Katy. She will encourage the hearts of leaders!”

—Brian Newman
Executive Director
Isaac Ishmael Initiative

“Her daily interface and up close and personal leadership style is exactly what was needed in this complex environment.”

—Brian Malone
Director of Management Services
National Reconnaissance Office

“Katy guided our organization successfully through economic hardships, gut-wrenching decisions, and terrible surprises with patience, resilience, and wisdom. I can whole heartedly recommend Ms. McQuaid to be of practical help to any leader or organization.”

—David Meserve
Executive Director
Urban Sky

Katy has advised leaders in major global companies:


The Latest

I’m passionate about the Living With Grace program for seniors. Creating community and helping seniors thrive, one story at a time. #EveryBodyLovesGrace #livingwithgrace #community #thrive #dogs
Excited to participate on a panel and book signings at the upcoming Tucson Festival of Books. I hope you’ll join me on March 8 & 9, 2024. #humbleyetfierce #cia #courage #leadership
"A life lived abroad requires the creation of new traditions around the holidays. New traditions don't replace the ones I grew up with, like eating lasagna and opening one present on Christmas Eve." Humble Yet Fierce, Chapter 17

Happy Thanksgiving, especially to those experiencing a different holiday this year.
#HumbleYetFierce #adaptability #thanksgiving #laughter #change
“Humble Yet Fierce: My Life Behind the Curtain of the CIA”is available on Audible. Listen to true-life stories filled with courage, faith and adventure from the former deputy director of logistics in the CIA.#humbleyetfierce #cia #adventure #leadership
Great beach reading…grab a copy on Amazon!
#Humbleyetfierce #life #leadership #cia #adventures
Executive matters. Lauren Rothman empowering women. 
#executivepresence #empoweringwomen #stylematters #confidence #Styleauter
What an honor to talk with the girls at Burke’s on International Women’s Day  2023.  We talked about being brave and courageous. #katherinedelmarburkeschool #iwd2023 #brave #courage
I was honored to speak to the CIA Logistics Retiree Association.  We all have great stories to share.  #HumbleYetFierce #justsayyes #teamwork #leadership
Three more performances of Bizet’s Carmen with Opera Colorado.  Just say yes!  I’m so honored to have a small part in the show. #humbleyetfierce  #operacolorado #modernauthor
I love the arts. #operacolorado #modernauthor #leadership #creativenonfictionwriter #memoir
What a way to be a part of International Women’s Day.  Speaking at the Inspiring Women Leaders Conference 2022z #iwl #humbleyetfierce
Happy Read Across America Day.  Love, Grace ❤️ #EveryBodyLovesGrace #kidlit

Leadership isn’t a title. It’s an action. You’re a leader.
Take the opportunity to step into something new and learn to practice the art of humble leadership.