My students are always so appreciative because they know I care about them:

“I highly recommend Doreen’s class as the alternative approach to public speaking. It was enlightening, positive, and effective.” — Jane Westfall, Marketing Director

“I experienced profound transformation in myself and witnessed it in others. It was a safe space for overcoming a deep-seated fear. I loved it!” — Emily Kobek, Student

“I really enjoyed this class. At first, I was nervous, but Doreen’s way of teaching was amazing. It was really new to me. In Japan, people usually don’t look in the eyes of each other when they talk. So, I’m not good at doing eye-contact. But I could do it in the class and it made me confident. It was a great experience for me.” — Erika Nakayama, Business Analyst

“The class packs an enormous amount of learning into one day. I’m very glad I attended and I highly recommend it to anyone who communicates with others, whether one-on-one or in groups.” — Laurie Grand, Manager

“Doreen makes it possible to take the risk of exposing fear and anxiety in a safe, learning environment.” — Rebecca Miller, Education

“I found this class wonderfully transformational. I am now more self-aware and more connected with other people when speaking in public.” — John McNally, Hospice Chaplain

“I learned a great deal from Doreen.  I feel that I had a chance to explore some deep-seated fears about public speaking either to an individual or a group, and through that exploration found my power.” — Jim Peterson, Special Education Teacher

“This class focused on the acquisition of essential skills that are not widely taught, such as learning to listen to your audience and developing a sense of self.” — Michele Liapes, Public Information

“Doreen is a gentle, knowledgeable, and very positive teacher.  I found the class to be insightful and empowering.” — Iris Martin Lopez, Citizens Complaint Office

“To deal with my fear of public speaking, I’ve tried hypnosis (2x), a 4-month class in cognitive behavioral therapy, beta blockers, meditation, avoidance, memorization and more.  None of that helped me nearly as much as this 1-day class.  I feel like I can face an audience and speak authentically today, tomorrow, and into the future.” — Amanda Kim, Writer

Doreen is warm, clear, engaging, reflective, insightful – in short she is awesome.  Her Fearless Speaking class is a must if you are open to exploring your fears of speaking or want to get to know your authentic self and voice.”  Helen Chuong — Administrator

“Doreen is amazing. Public speaking fear is never easy to fix. I’ve read so many books and none of them is as helpful as this class.” –Stephen Kwok, Software Developer


Doreen Downing, Ph.D., is a Psychologist, Founder of Essential Speaking, and Training Director of Speaking Circles® International. She specializes in the treatment of anxiety caused by the fear of speaking. In addition to her authentic communication workshops, private and group coaching, she leads Speaking Circles® in Berkeley and Marin, CA, along with E-Courses and seminars throughout the U.S., Canada, and Europe. To contact Doreen, Click Here.