After growing up in generational migrant labor poverty, leaving school for marriage at 15, having two children and continuing to cope with poverty, she found herself, at 25, with no husband, little education, and no job skills. What followed in 10 short years were: self-confidence, a G.E.D., an A.A. in Journalism, a B.A. (with honors) in Communications, a Master’s Degree in Communication with a minor in Gender Studies (with honors), and completion of a Doctorate Degree.

Donna completed her Doctorate in Educational Leadership at Portland State University in 2000, where she taught speech communication courses for eight years. She is currently president of Communication Across Barriers, a consulting firm devoted to improving communication and relationships. Donna is also founder and CEO of the new nonprofit, PovertyBridge which is dedicated to changing lives for people in poverty.  Donna is available for workshops, curriculum development, organizational development and planning, and inspirational keynote presentations.

Information provided by Dr. Beegle, courtesy of:


Donna M. Beegle, Ed.D. is a highly experienced National public speaker, discussion leader, trainer, and the author of “See Poverty, Be The Difference,” a resource book for professionals who work with people in poverty. Donna has worked and written articles providing insights and strategies for communicating more effectively across race, class, gender and generational barriers for 17 years. Donna’s inspiring story and work have been featured in newspapers around the nation, on local TV and on National programs such as PBS. Her work on poverty is being featured in a Documentary titled: Invisible Nation (air time to be announced). Donna has worked with educators, justice professionals, health care providers, social service agencies, and other organizations all over the nation who want to make a difference for those living in the crisis of poverty.

Watch the video below for more information about Donna Beegle and the Poverty Reduction Initiative: