You’re unlikely to ever meet anyone else like Dr. Mary Jo Podgurski. Some people call her the Sex Lady, probably because she’s presented sexuality education to over 230,000 young people, trained 10,000 peer educators and
7,000 young parents in her career. And that’s just part of it! She’s also written 28 books, including the Nonnie Series for children on challenging topics.

Dr. Mary Jo Podgurski’s life work is serving young people and their families. She has a background in nursing, education, childbirth education, and counseling; and she is certified in sexuality education and sexuality counseling through AASECT. Currently, she serves as the President and Founder of the Academy for Adolescent Health, Inc. Dr. Podgurski bases her numerous education programs and books on her foundational belief of #EachPersonIsAPersonofWorth. Her ability to respect all people, listen to young people, and develop inspiring and empowering curricula create a safe environment for learning. She considers herself an Ambassador for Respect and models respect daily, in her professional and personal lives.


Dr. Podgurski founded The Washington Health System Teen Outreach in 1988 and a peer education program in 1995. In honor of her noteworthy accomplishments, Dr. Podgurski was awarded the Athena Women of Wisdom Award, the Elisabeth Bing Award, the NAACP Human Rights Award, The ARC Community Award, the Healthy Teen Network Excellence in Sexuality Education Award, and the Carol Mendez Cassell Award for Excellence in Sexuality Education.

I first met Mary Jo when she taught a Lamaze course I took on teen pregnancy and parenting. She was so thoughtful and kind. As you do in many of those meetings, we took her to dinner and she met my then, onery to me, preteen daughter. Mary Jo easily connected with her in a way that I couldn’t and it was so obvious that she was able to connect with my daughter.


Listen to this episode and see for yourself what a fascinating and caring person she is…

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