Ashley Rhodes-Courter

Ashley Rhodes-Courter

Since her first National Keynote at age 14, Ashley Rhodes-Courter has shared her story with thousands in the United States and in over 7 countries.

Ashley Rhodes-Courter, MSW, is the quintessential American success story. Born in 1985 to a single teen mother, by the age of 3 she was in Florida’s foster care system where she spent almost ten years being shuttled between 14 homes—some quite abusive—before being adopted from a Children’s Home at the age of twelve.

Despite her ordeal, she excelled in school because she believed that, “my education was the one thing nobody could take from me.” Early in her life she felt compelled to advocate for herself and the other children she lived with, particularly in the abusive foster homes.

Her efforts and academic achievements landed her Eckerd College’s Trustee Scholarship where she graduated with honors and ahead of schedule earning a double major in Communications and Theater and a double minor in Political Science and Psychology. Ashley then went on to earn a Master’s Degree in Social Work from the University of Southern California.

During her undergraduate studies, she was one of 20 college students selected for the USA Today All-USA Academic Team and was named one of GLAMOUR Magazine’s Top Ten College Women. She was also selected as one of the four Golden BR!CK Award winners for outstanding advocacy for community change by DoSomething!. As part of their campaign, she was featured on 25 million bags of Cool Ranch Doritos.

By the age of 22, Ashley had become a New York Times Bestselling Author. Her first book, “Three Little Words” is now an International Bestseller and has been published in at least 4 countries. Her second book, “Three More Words” debuted at #1 on Amazon Bestseller’s List. Both books are used in classrooms across the country in various community and First Year Experience Collegiate programs.

Ashley has received State, local, and National awards for her speaking, advocacy, and philanthropy. She has spoken on Capitol Hill and has been invited to the White House twice. “Three Little Words” is now being made into a major motion picture.

Most Requested Programs

- Motivating Change in Three Little Words
- Reframing Your Life and Leadership: What’s Good About Bad Experiences
-Four Letter Words & Three More Words:
Finding Professional and Personal Balance
- School as Sanctuary


She was fantastic! My folks enjoyed hearing her story so much. Many told me on their way out that this was their best back to school in service experience.
Please tell her thank you again. - Superintendent - CCPS

Ashley Rhodes-Courter demonstrated our mission beautifully on stage which touched many of our attendees. Some of which were in tears listening to her story. At the same time she was funny and connected in a way that was a blessing. She took time to speak and take photos after the event with all that wanted to which was very special for our guests. - Women Helping Women Fund Tri-Cities

Ashley had us from “hello.” Her infectious personality, engaging delivery and true compassion were perfect for our celebration of 20 successful years in child welfare. Over the course of her presentation she had 150 guests alternating between laughter and tears. And she seamlessly tied her journey to Neighbor To Family’s mission of keeping siblings together. She was generous with her time and spirit, remaining behind to chat with guests and listen to one of our many success stories as told by two siblings and what became their “forever family.” I can’t think of a better person to help us mark a milestone in our agency’s history. - Vice President - Neighbor To Family