Bee will engage and move you deeply while sharing her personal journey in Africa during the eradication of smallpox. With a backdrop of corruption, genocide, and oppression of women, she still provides an insightful tapestry of victories won and hope for the future. I highly recommend her to your group.

—Linda Herzog, J.D.

A riveting account of the events, effort and victory of the eradication of smallpox. Bee makes the facts come alive—the devastation of the disease as well as other heart-rending realities. . . A ‘must-hear’ for all.

—Kay M.

Bee Bloeser’s story reads like a political thriller, women’s history, and African adventure rolled into one. An alert witness to a breakthrough in world health, she brings insight and humor to a dark tale of disease, corruption and genocide that unfolds around her, her visionary husband and their two young children. Riveting.

—Pamela Alexander, Pulitzer nominee


Book this popular speaker and be immersed in a world few have experienced. . .

VACCINES & BAYONETS: Fighting Smallpox in Africa amid Tribalism, Terror and the Cold War, Bee Bloeser’s forthcoming historical memoir.



Bee was there. While her husband worked to eradicate smallpox from the planet, the family encountered tribal pogroms and a princess secluded in a mud-walled palace. They lived on a sinister equatorial island where the murderous dictator burned all boats and shut down the press. Bee reveals a story largely unknown to the outside world, one thatis timely today. She is the author of the forthcoming historical memoir VACCINES & BAYONETS: Fighting Smallpox in Africa amid Tribalism, Terror and the Cold War.

Bee and her late husband served the diseased and disabled around the world and among Native Americans. She is a member of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, the UN Association, USAID Alumni, P.E.O., a philanthropic education organization, various writers’ groups, and is on the board of Tucson Tellers of Tales.



  • The Global War on Smallpox—An Embedded Family’s View—The dreaded scourge of smallpox, the formidable challenges in the campaign to eradicate it, and the victorious conclusion. A current concern: potential weaponization of the virus, is addressed.
  • If You Scream in Africa and Nobody Hears—A time and place cut off from the outside world, Francisco Macias Nguema’s regime, The Terror—crushing his country and his people. In this context, the smallpox eradicator is on the frontline for health and American security. His family is on a frontline of a different sort.
  • Barriers to Education for Girls in Northern Nigeria—The author’s visits with women isolated behind walls, progress in educational opportunities, and the courageous women who now dare to run for office despite attacks and kidnappings.
  • An Empty Harbor: When a Dictator Burned all Boats—History of a strategic African harbor four blocks from the author’s house (1970), embassy escape plan, boats destroyed, evacuation bedlam, and an open-source glimpse at Churchill’s WWII “Operation Postmaster” and 2004 coup attempt led by former SAS officer Simon Mann.
  • Fighting Smallpox in Africa amid Tribalism, Terror and the ColdWar—Bee’s memories of smallpox, its eradication (“a medical moonshot”), tribal pogroms, oppression of girls in Nigeria, The Terror in Equatorial Guinea, and risks to a smallpox program family. This talk can be any length, from a brief overview to an in-depth half-day program.



Public speaker: e.g. Pepperdine University, Santa Barbara Yacht Club, various philanthropic and service organizations; storyteller

B.A., Speech/Theatre; M.A., Speech-Language Pathology, performer in plays and quartets.



  • An introduction to the world’s only global eradication of a human disease
  • Knowledge of hidden facts about little-knowncountries and cultures
  • Insight into why what happened then matters now, e.g., in today’s news of:
    • Vaccinating against Polio and Ebola; battling malaria and unsafe drinking water
    • Smallpox bioterrorism fears: the disease is gone—the virus isn’t
    • Denial of education, oppression of women and girls—Boko Haram fights gains
    • Politics of oil—petro-dollars, power and palaces
    • Press suppression—when nobody knows what’s happening



E-mail: bee@beebloeser.com   Website:https://beebloeser.com   Cell phone: 520-631-0762

Bee is based in southern Arizona and the Santa Barbara, California, area.

To see where Bee is speaking next, go to Events page.







What struck me the most was your passion. Laura M.

A vibrant, dynamic, gripping presentation. I loved it and learned a lot. Fascinating and sobering information. Peggy Callahan

Your talk was riveting. Would you give your talk to my husband’s club? It was so moving, I do not think his group should miss it. Kay M.

Thank you for your wonderful story at the Festival of Books. I loved your interaction with the audience….Gloria M., Tellers of Tales organizer

I was flooded with memories of Africa–flashes of feelings, smells, visions. We were so energized, and I was struck by your sincerity. You are an inspiration. Thank you. Joan Milner

Your topic has been among the few to draw an audience from other walks of life. Thank you so very much….Pamela A.

Bee is an engaging knowledgeable speaker who supplements her presentations with photographs and personal experiences that will move you deeply while educating you about the incredible journey that led to the eradication of Small pox. I highly recommend her to your group. Linda Herzog, J.D.

Thank you!! It was a wonderful program. We all want to hear more.
We hope you’ll do another program next year. Nancy B.