Ellen Snortland

Author, Playwright, Activist, Lawyer, Self-Defense Advocate, Bad-ass!

Ellen Snortland is many things: a writing coach who works with both individuals and groups, an author, columnist, self-defense advocate, actor, lawyer, radio and TV personality and more. She is a true Renaissance Woman. Her groundbreaking book on women’s self-defense, “Beauty Bites Beast” (with a foreword by Gavin de Becker) was featured on Dateline NBC; the book is now in its 3rd Edition. In 2016, a feature-length documentary version of the book was released; view the trailer here: A regular columnist for the Pasadena Weekly ( and frequent contributor to Ms. Magazine, Ellen is an advocate for women and girls, and physical safety for all. “There’s a saying: ‘Think Globally, Act Locally’” Snortland says, “Your body is as local as it gets.” As a past president of the UNA, Pasadena Chapter, she has attended United Nations world conferences and annual UN meetings as an NGO delegate and journalist. She performs her acclaimed one-woman show, “Now That She’s Gone,” a comic memoir about growing up Norwegian-American to SRO audiences, and is currently active with 50-50 Leadership, a non-profit that envisions more women and girls in leadership positions. Ellen also serves on the boards of Impact Personal Safety ( and Consumer Watchdog ( She presents personal safety talks and workshops for corporations and educational institutions as “The Safety Godmother,” and her new book co-authored with IMPACT Personal Safety founder Lisa Gaeta is aptly titled “The Safety Godmothers: the ABCS of Awareness, Boundaries and Confidence for Teens.”

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