Meet the Coaches
Fellow alums you can talk to for advice
It’s not always easy to discern the best next step in your career, but a professional career coach can help. A coach works with you to consider how your skills, knowledge, and experience might prepare you for opportunities you hadn’t considered on your own.
These alumni work as career coaches and offer special rates and services for fellow alums, just be sure to mention that you’re a UR grad too.
Please note: The counselors listed on this webpage are in no way affiliated with the Office of Alumni Relations. These professionals are independent contractors and are not being compensated or retained by the University. These are fee-based services, with rates given by each provider.
Geri Blitzman ‘68
New England Growth Associates, LLC
Areas served: Geri works virtually across the United States and abroad and in-person with alumni in the greater Boston area.
Geri brings more than 40 years of consulting and executive coaching experience to her work as a career coach. She specializes in helping alumni who want to become better leaders and those who are transitioning into managerial roles. She also assists people who may be facing organizational challenges, getting established, or changing careers. She has a unique methodology for discovering personal strengths and brings relevant leadership and personal development strategies to career coaching conversations.
Her leadership and organizational development consulting and executive coaching practice spans across all industries, with particular expertise in technology, finance, entrepreneurial, and non-profit sectors. Geri has a passion for environmental work and has coached more than 500 clients at all levels with a focus on achieving greater effectiveness and personal fulfillment. Her extensive experience with senior management and teams, along with years of classroom teaching, have shown her the factors that impact both career success and derailment.
Qualifications and Certifications: Geri holds a master’s degree in Organization Development from the Pepperdine Graziadio Business School and has two advanced degrees in Education from Boston University. She is certified in coaching through New Ventures West and has extensive experience with over a dozen personal assessment tools. Geri also serves as an adjunct coach with the Center for Creative Leadership.
Susan Brophy ‘99W (MS)
Executive Careers Group, LLC
Areas served: Susan works virtually across the United States and internationally, and in-person in the Cleveland, Ohio area.
A nationally-recognized LinkedIn expert, career counselor, and human resources professional, Susan’s passion is helping people accomplish their career goals and achieve leadership success.
As owner and principal of Executive Career Groups, LLC, she counsels and coaches clients to help them navigate job loss and career change. She also works with various organizations to maximize their LinkedIn presence with employee training and advising on networking strategies.
Qualifications and Certifications: Susan earned her bachelor’s degree from the State University of New York at Buffalo and her master’s degree in higher education with a focus on career development and leadership from the Warner School of Education. She has more than 20 years of experience working with clients from recent graduates to C-Level executives. Her commitment, resourcefulness, and understanding of the modern job search process makes her a trusted partner to candidates and companies alike.
Jane Finkle ‘87
Areas served: Jane works virtually across the US, but is most familiar with East and West Coast markets.
Jane is co-founder of Career Visions, a career counseling and consulting firm. She has over 20 years of experience helping individuals at all job levels and ages with career assessment, planning, job search strategies, and workplace adjustment. Prior to founding Career Visions, Jane served as Associate Director of Career Services at the University of Pennsylvania, where she designed and administered career programs, developed resources, and provided career counseling and advice on employment trends for students and alumni of the College of Arts and Sciences and the Wharton School. She also created and led the “Wharton Career Discovery” seminar, a program still presented today.
Qualifications and Certifications: Master of Science degree in Counseling, Master Career Counselor (MCC) and National Certified Counselor (NCC)
Jane served as a delegate for the National Career Development Association and People to People Ambassador Program in China. She is an accomplished writer, and her work has been published in the Huffington Post, Adirondack Life, and showcased in her weekly column, "Career Blueprints". Her new book, The Introvert’s Complete Career Guide, is scheduled for publication in fall 2018. Jane's expertise has also been featured in the Rochester Review magazine as part of the Master Class series. Read her advice for introverts: Thriving at Work While Introverted.
Brittany Harrington ‘10E
You Do You
817-909-2618 | firstname.lastname@example.org
Areas served: Brittany works virtually across the United States, and in-person in the Seattle, Washington area.
Brittany has been coaching in various capacities for more than six years and specializes in working with musicians and artists. Through her own journey of studying at conservatory, performing professionally, and discovering a new career, she respects and understands the many transitions and transformations that often occur with careers in the arts. Brittany loves working with students and alumni to help them achieve their goals, including clarifying a project or path, pursuing other musical career options, or a pivoting into completely new careers!
Qualifications and Certifications: Brittany earned her undergraduate degree from the Eastman School of Music in addition to an Arts Leadership Certificate from the Catherine Filene Shouse Arts Leadership Program. She holds graduate and professional degrees from Southern Methodist University and completed training with inviteCHANGE, an International Coaching Federation-accredited institution for professional coaching. Brittany also has a vast musical performance background and extensive training in the health and fitness industry.
Abby Kohut ‘88
Absolutely Abby LLC
Red Bank, NJ
Areas served: Abby can work virtually across the United States.
Abby specializes in one hour consultations with topics such as interviewing, resumes, LinkedIn, or cover letters—but specifically based on the topic of your choice. It’s all up to you!
Qualifications and Certifications: AbsolutelyAbby.com has received many accolades and notes of recognition, including being selected by Forbes as one of the “Top 100 Websites for Your Career,” mentioned on CNBC as a top website for career changers, and CEOWORLD Magazine rated @Absolutely_Abby as “1 of the Top 25 Women for your Job Search.”
Kathleen Lindenmayer ‘84
WCSU Career Success Center
203-837-8266 | email@example.com
Areas served: Kathleen can work virtually across the United States.
Kathleen is currently the Director of a university Career Success Center and leads comprehensive programs and services that support the life design initiatives and career development programs for students and alumni. She came to higher education in 2010 after spending many exciting years in the U.S. Navy as an Intelligence Officer. She served in many domestic and overseas locations performing strategic, operational and administrative functions that led major evolutionary changes in the U.S. Defense Intelligence Community. She also oversaw the manpower, personnel and/or career education and training of a diverse, national cadre of U.S. Defense and international intelligence professionals. Kathleen has experience mentoring and coaching junior to senior leaders throughout their careers, both in and out of uniform, and can give current perspectives and guidance on navigating an ever-changing workforce environment.
Qualifications and Certifications: Kathleen earned her bachelor's degree in Architectural Studies from the University of Rochester and her MBA from Western Connecticut State University. She completed numerous Navy and national-level training, courses and/or certifications in intelligence, leadership and human capital management. She retired from the U.S. Navy in 2010 as a Captain.
Sandra Long ‘79
Post Road Consulting LLC
Areas served: Sandra can work virtually across the United States.
Sandra is an internationally-recognized LinkedIn expert, consultant, author, and speaker. As the founder of Post Road Consulting, she and her team focus completely on LinkedIn education and thought leadership, serving clients that include sales teams, C-Level executives, universities, recruiters, and job-seeks.
Qualifications and Certifications: Sandra is the author of the best-selling book, LinkedIn for Personal Branding: The Ultimate Guide and presented the first-ever TEDx Talk about LinkedIn in 2019. LinkedIn’s Community: A Superpower Hiding in Plain Sight, is available on YouTube.
Julie Reisler ‘97
Empowered Living, LLC
Areas served: Julie is willing to work virtually across the United States.
Author and Life Designer® Julie Reisler is the founder and CEO of Empowered Living, a Life Design and personal development company. Julie has a master's degree in Coaching and more than 12 certifications in health and well-being. Julie is a Life Design and leadership coach, author of Get a PhD in YOU, a national speaker, a facilitator for companies on mindset and leadership, and a faculty member at Georgetown University. Julie is also the host of the Podcast, 'The You-est You.' Julie is enamored with helping you to master your inner world so you can master your outer world.
Qualifications and Certifications: Julie has her master's degree in Health & Wellness Coaching and Nutrition from Maryland University of Integrative Health, her Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology and Health & Society from the University of Rochester, her Graduate Certificate in Organization Development from Georgetown University, and another Graduate Certificate in Health & Wellness Coaching from MUIH. She is a certified Meyers Briggs Assessment Practitioner, is a certified Workplace Excellence Master Trainer & Facilitator, a certified Mindful Eating Specialist, a certified Personal Trainer (NASM), Fitness Instructor, Barre Instructor, Peak Pilates Instructor and willPower & Grace instructor. Julie is also certified LEAF (Leading Experiential Appreciative Facilitation) with the Flourishing Leadership Institute.
Wendy Silver ‘95
Beyond the Workplace LLC
Areas served: Wendy is willing to work virtually across the United States.
Wendy provides career and workplace counseling, including working with people to identify their career goals to find professionally challenging work that aligns with their personal needs and desires. Wendy also coaches individuals through workplace issues such as approaching difficult conversations, requesting a flexible work arrangement, or negotiating and requesting a promotion or raise. She has experience coaching new managers as they step into leadership roles as well as working with senior leaders who are juggling a lot of responsibilities and are not sure how to best prioritize or delegate everything on their plates. Wendy supports small businesses and provides on-demand employee relations support. Her experience working as a Field Attorney for the National Labor Relations Board provided her with a true understanding of common employment pitfalls and set her on her path to spend the past 16 years working in Human Resources. Wendy has worked both for non-profit and for-profit organizations in a variety of industries, counseling managers and employees at all levels.
Qualifications and Certifications: Wendy holds her Juris Doctor from Suffolk University Law School. She also completed a program on negotiation at Harvard University and is a Coach for the Coaching for Leadership and Teamwork Program at Babson College.
Jodi Smith ‘90
Mannersmith Etiquette Consulting
Areas served: Jodi can work virtually across the United States.
Jodi RR Smith, president and owner of Mannersmith, is an etiquette consultant specializing in social and professional conduct. Working with individuals, corporations, and other organizations, Jodi educates in a way that is both informative and entertaining, helping her clients increase their confidence levels and achieve success in today's world.
Qualifications and Certifications: Jodi has been promoting better behaviors since 1986. She received her bachelor's degree in Psychology from the University of Rochester and her master's degree in Industrial and Labor Relations from Cornell University. Her extensive background in motivational psychology and human resources has served to reaffirm her belief that proper manners and etiquette are an essential part of functioning successfully in today's world.
She is also the author of the Barnes & Noble titles The Etiquette Book: A Complete Guide to Modern Manners, From Clueless to Class Act: Manners for the Modern Man and From Clueless to Class Act: Manners for the Modern Woman. Jodi's expertise has also been featured in Rochester Review magazine as part of the Master Class series. Read her advice for navigating a diverse and modern workplace.
Daniel J. Troup ‘86S (MBA)
Areas served: Dan works virtually and supports clients across the United States.
Finding your first (or next) job is the most important sales and marketing assignment of your career. As the Managing Director of AdvantEdge Careers, Dan offers personalized, 1:1 career coaching and consulting designed specifically for the needs of soon-to-be and recent college graduates seeking their first job. His clients "close the sale" and build competitive advantage utilizing a structured, three-phased job search program of Personal Branding, Personal Networking, and Personal Selling. Dan brings a personable and engaging communication style to career coaching for young adults. His focus is on practical coaching, skills development, action planning, and positioning his clients for success in an increasingly challenging job market.
Qualifications and Certifications: Dan earned his bachelor's degree in Psychology from Cornell University and his MBA in Finance from the University of Rochester. He is a Certified Professional Career Coach and a member of the Professional Association of Resume Writers & Career Coaches.
Joanne Yawitz ‘73
Living YOUR Dream Coaching
San Rafael, CA
Areas served: Joanne serves all 50 states, North America, EU, UK, and Central America
Joanne offers career development coaching to individuals and small groups seeking to reach the next level in their careers. She is an executive coach specializing in leadership, leading mentor groups, and delivering workshops and presentations. Additionally, Joanne can help design action plans and help you present yourself in the most positive light. From resume review, to networking, to interviewing and negotiating an offer, she can help every step of the way.
Qualifications and Certifications: Joanne is a graduate of the Coaching Training Institute, has her MBA from Simmons College, a master’s degree in City and Regional Planning from Harvard, and her Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology and French from the University of Rochester. Joanne has been a successful business owner and entrepreneur since 1990 and has been an executive recruiter in the life sciences, IT, financial, and manufacturing industries for 29 years.
Join our Career Coaches Network
If you are a Rochester alum that is an experienced and professionally trained career coach who is interested in working with fellow Rochester alumni, you may apply to be a part of our career coaching network.