Pat Johnson


After a long and successful career, Pat Johnson took a leap of faith and reinvented herself.

Her friend of many years approached her with a wild idea — what if they started a travel show about two ladies, of a “certain age,” who like to travel and make cultural connections and friends around the world.

Pat thought about it and decided why not? She left her job as the founding director of the Museum of the African Diaspora in San Francisco and set off for the adventure of a lifetime.

After some creative fundraising, Pat and her friend, Regina Fraser, headed to South Africa to shoot their pilot.

That pilot led to their show, “Grannies on Safari,” which is now shown on public television stations across the nation and is syndicated to 117 countries through the UK Travel Channel. It’s even picked up an Emmy Award.

Pat says she and Regina want to bring exposure to travel and arts and culture and to prove that you’re never too old for new adventures and for learning new things.

The two friends combined their skills — Pat had decades of experiences in the arts and Regina is a retired airline executive with media experience — and redefined what retirement means to them.

Pat says she hopes other people look at her and realize that retirement is just the ending of one part of your life, but it can also be the beginning of the next chapter. It’s a time to pursue your dreams and passions, those things you never felt bold enough to do.

Pat and Regina had another reason to take a risk. Both women are breast cancer survivors, and Pat says after living through her disease, she realized that you never know what’s going to happen next in life. Now is the time to chase your dreams and live life fully.

Click here to visit the Grannies on Safari website to watch clips from the show and to find out where you can the show in your area.