Monica Morgan is an award-winning internationally renowned photojournalist who has been living life through the lens for over 30 years. Over the past three decades, Monica has photographed several influential personalities and has captured historical moments through her camera lens. With decades of continued excellence to her credit, Monica received the Distinguished Toastmaster (DTM) in 2020, the highest level of educational achievement from Toastmasters International. She was recently also awarded the Distinguished Service from Toastmasters International for her role as an Area Director.
Monica approaches photography with a unique style of “What if…” themed storytelling, which speaks to her clients’ hearts and souls, inspiring them to bring out their best, resulting in “captivating captures” each session. “I don’t simply shoot pictures; I engage and leave an impact,” she revealed. Her distinctive way of telling a story of grandeur through the camera lens has been finessed by experience over the years. It can be seen in all of her photographs, from personal shots to group photos or special events.
Some of her work includes the timeless photograph of Aretha Franklin with Smokey Robinson, which was featured in the end credits of MGM’s “Respect,” a 2021 American biographical musical drama biopic of Aretha Franklin. Another image of Aretha by Morgan was commissioned by the Queen of Souls herself and was used in her official Homegoing Ceremony Program. Her photograph of activist Rosa Parks was also used on Park’s official Homegoing Ceremony Program cover.
Her brand, Monica Morgan Speaks/Monica Morgan Photography, reflects the power of life lessons learned during over 30 years of traveling the world, capturing images of historical events, icons, celebrities, world leaders, presidents, heads of state and the unsung heroes of everyday life. To inspire others with her journey, Monica now speaks about her personal experiences, including the challenges faced and overcame by starting a career as an African American female in a predominantly white-male-dominated industry.
“My method sees beyond each final two-dimensional photo, to lives lived, relationships forged, history having been made. While I’m shooting, I’m personally present in that moment and sometimes—almost always—come away with a compelling story, captured through the lens at that moment, but that I can share to inspire those in my audiences to create stories of their own. That’s why I speak: to share the many compelling and thought-provoking stories I’ve captured and those I’ve experienced as I’ve lived my life, through the lens,” she shared.
In addition to making history through the lens, Monica also hosts a live, call-in radio show weekly on 910 AM Superstation on the iHeartApp. She has also been busy developing and delivering presentations and keynotes for various Toastmaster Districts sharing the story behind her distinct work, company and personal branding.
When asked in an interview her plan for the coming years, she says, “Five years from now, I ‘picture’ Monica Morgan Speaks/Monica Morgan Photography and myself continuing to travel the world documenting world events and lifestyles through the lens of my camera while having expanded my reach to transforming lives through my stories, telling them to audiences from stages worldwide.”