Our Mission

To build a community of high performing leaders dedicated to supporting one another in pursuit of sustainable peak performance, especially in the face of change and pressure.

noun

val·or | \ 'va-lǝr \

Strength of mind or spirit that enables a person to encounter uncertainty with firmness : personal bravery : heroic courage.

The Principles of High Performance are Universal

We started Valor to make coaching available to everyone, so that you have the competitive advantage required to work through challenges, pursue your goals, and ascend in your career.

Our Story

Valor Founder, Sarah Milby, was frustrated by the management training she was given as she worked her way up in her career. Training programs were often solely focused on process, methodology and compliance; or they were just uninspiring and ineffective, assuming everyone learns the same way or has the same growth area to develop. They were one-time events, not experiential, lacking measurement and impactful results. After asking other executives how they inspired, trained, and developed their top talent and rising leaders, Sarah quickly realized she was not the only one frustrated with the available options.

While imagining potential solutions, Sarah couldn’t stop referencing her experience as a college athlete. She had a dedicated performance coach who helped her be at her best, giving her an outside perspective, strategies to handle increased change and pressure, and proven skills to prepare for success. Her coach became her competitive advantage, helping her navigate new opportunities and challenges. The lessons she learned from her performance coach carried with her off the field and throughout her career.

We founded Valor so that every leader could have a coach in their corner.

Our Team

Sarah Milby

Sarah Milby

Founder & CEO
Griffin Mahoney

Griffin Mahoney

CTO
Jon Brilliant

Jon Brilliant

CFO
Dr. Jeff Coleman

Dr. Jeff Coleman

VP of Programs and Research
Tim Fu

Tim Fu

VP of Product
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Iris Zimmermann

VP of Coach Operations
Tim-Mann

Tim Mann

Director of Sales
Jessica Morales

Jessica Morales

Director of Customer Success
Whitney Otto

Whitney Otto

Director of Coach Community
Dr. Lauren Tashman

Dr. Lauren Tashman

Director of Science and Coaching
Jamie Birney

Jamie Birney

Lead Engineer
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Chris Chin

Customer Success Associate
Stewart Chiodo

Stewart Chiodo

Software Engineer
Amy Lwin

Amy Lwin

Content Developer
Hadley Swello

Hadley Swello

Software Engineer

Valor Advisors

Dr. Allen Smith

Dr. Allen Smith

M.D. and Masters in Health Administration and Population Health
Former President and Chief Medical Officer, Brigham and Women's Physician Organization
Brad Stulberg

Brad Stulberg

Writer, speaker and author on human performance
Co-author of "Peak Performance" and "Passion Paradox"
Dr. Jose Picart

Dr. Jose Picart

PhD Experimental Cognitive Psychology
Retired Army Colonel and Professor Emeritus West Point, United States Military Academy
Professor of counselor education and former Vice Provost for Diversity and Inclusion at NC State University
Dr. Carol Robin

Dr. Carol Robin

PhD, Organizational Psychology
30 years in high-performance leadership and executive coaching
Dominic Coleman

Dominic Coleman

Group Vice President Global Sales at Gartner
20 years business executive and sales leader with proven track record
Bill Donovan

Bill Donovan

Former General Manager, Human Performance Institute

Valor Leadership and Performance Coaches

Dr. Paul Ashbrook

Dr. Paul Ashbrook

Dr. Paul Ashbrook

Temecula, CA

Meet the Coach

Dr. Paul Ashbrook applies personal experience in competitive golf and a career consulting elite performers, athletes, Special Operations military service members, and educators to help his Valor clients reach their fullest potential. Most recently, his private practice has been immersed in the golf scene working with players in the elite junior and NCAA top-25 ranks as well as players on the Korn Ferry, European, and Latin American Tours. Off the golf course, Paul skillfully translates his performance psychology knowledge for his Valor clients as they lead in tech, healthcare, and finance to help them prepare and perform at full capacity under pressure. Along with coaching and consulting, Paul makes time to teach as a professor and student mentor at John F. Kennedy University. 

Paul is also a published researcher. His work on the efficacy of individualized mental skills training can be found in The Sport Psychologist and he has presented on the mental skills that differentiate elite performance at the NCAA Division I level. As such, his approach centralizes on individualization and figuring out the needs of his clients to tailor their work and fit their needs as much as possible.

Favorite Quote

“Why would I worry about missing a shot I haven't even taken yet?” —Michael Jordan

Education & Affiliations


Association for Applied Sport Psychology - Certified Mental Performance Consultant (CMPC)

University of the Rockies - Psy.D. Sport and Exercise Psychology

San Diego State University - M.A. Sport and Exercise Psychology

University of California, Riverside - B.A. Psychology

Holly Brooks

Holly Brooks

Holly Brooks

Anchorage, AK

Meet the Coach

Holly Brooks combines her experience as an Olympic cross-country skier and 10 years as a mental health counselor into a collaborative coaching approach that drives behavior change in her clients. As the owner of her own practice, she works with individuals and teams to address performance and mental health by helping them face their fears and leveraging their strengths to reach their goals. With Valor clients, Holly seamlessly translates her expertise to reach leaders of top US hospitals, global tech giants, and the ultra-competitive world of finance as they pursue optimal performance and well-being. 

Holly is an accomplished and barrier-breaking cross-country skier. She became the oldest “rookie” to be named to the U.S. Ski Team when she qualified for the 2010 Vancouver Olympics while working as a full-time cross-country ski coach, breaking barriers of ageism and the developmental pipeline. Holly returned to the Olympics for the 2014 Sochi games and is also a bronze medalist in the FIS Worldloppet Ski Marathon Series, a two-time champion of the American Birkebeiner and Mount Marathon, and was a member of the first-ever U.S. Ski Team to medal at the World Cup Relay. In 2018, Holly’s distinguished skiing career was memorialized by being inducted into the Alaska Sports Hall of Fame. 

 
Favorite Quote

“Whether you think you can or think you can't…you're right.” —Henry Ford

 

Education, Affiliations, & Accomplishments

2018 Alaska Sports Hall of Fame Inductee 

2015 FIS Worldloppet Ski Marathon Series - Bronze Medalist

2014 Sochi Olympics - Cross Country Skiing 

2012 World Cup Relay - Bronze Medalist 

2011 U.S. Sprint Classic Champion, SuperTour Overall Champion, & Grand National Champion 

2010 Vancouver Olympics - Cross-Country Skiing 

Association for Applied Sport Psychology - Certified Mental Performance Consultant (CMPC) 

Alaska Pacific University - M.S. Counseling Psychology

Whitman College - B.A. Environmental Studies and Sociology

Christian Buck

Christian Buck

Christian Buck

Charleston, SC

Meet the Coach

Christian Buck utilizes his multifaceted background as a collegiate athlete, Wall Street broker, and high-performance coach to help his clients navigate their personal and professional journeys. His career has led him into the locker rooms of some of the top NCAA Division I lacrosse teams as well as onto storied golf courses with golfers on the PGA Canada Tour, the college circuit, and more. In his work with Valor, Christian seamlessly translates his knowledge and experience into the corporate world, guiding business owners, sales professionals, healthcare physicians, tech leaders, and top-level executives towards sustainable peak performance.

Christian has found time for writing as well. His lifelong passion for lacrosse culminated into the book, Thinking Inside the Crease: The Mental Secrets to Becoming a Dominant Lacrosse Goalie. Christian’s latest book, The Sport of School: How to Help Student-Athletes Improve their Grades in High School, College, and Beyond is a product of The Sport of School Academy, which he founded in 2010 to help student-athletes translate their on-field mental game into the classroom.

Favorite Quote


“Performance equals talent minus interference.”

 

Education & Affiliations


Association for Applied Sport Psychology - Certified Mental Performance Consultant (CMPC)

Fearless Golf - Certified Coach

Argosy University - M.A. Sport Psychology

Ithaca College - B.A. Planned Studies

Dr. Greg Cartin

Dr. Greg Cartin

Dr. Greg Cartin

Lexington, MA

Meet the Coach

Dr. Greg Cartin has helped individuals and teams of all ages, abilities, and industries achieve peak performance since 2010. He expertly applies sport psychology from his extensive work with PGA Tour winners to the professions and lives of his Valor clients as they lead in business, tech, and healthcare. Greg’s dynamic, client-centered approach incorporates best practices across disciplines and philosophies to enhance performance in every elite performer he works with. 

Greg’s passion and expertise are the result of a lifelong fascination with the psychology of performance. As an athlete himself, he was struck with how he could perform at a very high level one day, and on another, not so much; how some performances were deeply enjoyable and others felt like a chore. In his words, “I learned at a young age that the more engaged in an activity, the more enjoyment I would experience, and more-times-than-not I would play great as well.” His passion realized, Greg went on to pursue his doctoral degree and open his private practice consulting with athletes of all levels and ages. When he’s not walking the course with PGA Tour players or consulting with c-suite executives, Greg also supports local youth programs, helping young athletes improve in their specific performance realm and navigate through their sometimes difficult adolescent years. 

Favorite Quote

“Try to make a rose into a good rose, rather than seek to change roses into lilies.”—Abraham Maslow

Education & Affiliations


Boston University - Ed.D., Counseling Psychology, Sport Psychology Concentration  

Boston University - M.Ed., Counseling Psychology, Sport Psychology Concentration

Trinity College, Hartford - B.A., Psychology

Elmer Castillo

Dr. Elmer Castillo

Dr. Elmer Castillo

Columbia, SC

Meet the Coach

Dr. Elmer Castillo draws upon his military, teaching, research, and mentorship experience to guide clients towards developing their own competitive edge. Over his career, he has provided mental skills training to elite athletes, coaches, teams, cheerleaders, and performing artists. Elmer also serves as a Master Resilience Trainer - Performance Expert with the U.S. Army where he teaches mental skills, resilience, and performance enhancement techniques to military service members. A passionate coach, he expertly translates his knowledge and experience to meet the needs of his Valor clients, from leaders in the tech industry to business executives, and beyond. 

Elmer served his country valiantly as a Sergeant (E-5) in the U.S. Marine Corps. Today, he is retired from military service and now supports his fellow servicemen and women through his coaching. Elmer’s work within the field of Sport and Performance Psychology has been recognized and published in prominent journals including the International Journal of Sport Psychology and Military Behavioral Health. To date, he has 10 publications to his name.

Favorite Quote

“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.” —attributed to Aristotle

 

Education & Affiliations 

Sergeant E-5 (retired), United States Marine Corps 

Association for Applied Sport Psychology - Certified Mental Performance Consultant (CMPC)

American Psychological Society (APA) - Division 47 Member 

Florida State University - Ph.D. Sport and Performance Psychology

University of Central Florida - M.S. Sport and Exercise Science

Kaplan University - B.S. Health Science

Dr. Jeff Coleman

Dr. Jeff Coleman

Dr. Jeff Coleman

Durham, NC

Meet the Coach

Dr. Jeff Coleman is the VP of Coaching and Content for Valor Performance. He brings a wealth of experience from his extensive career conducting mental performance and leadership development training to military teams, Olympic-level and professional athletes, and within higher education. Before joining Valor, Jeff spent a decade at the United States Military Academy at West Point as a performance psychology instructor. In this role, he educated future officers of the U.S. Army on the mental preparation and performance mindset needed to excel in high-stakes environments. Today, Jeff brings his West Point experience into Valor, not only as a VP, but also to help his clients reach sustainable peak performance in the high-stakes environments of tech, healthcare, and sales. 

Jeff became the first civilian to be granted the rank of Assistant Professor in the over 30-year existence of the Center for Enhanced Performance at West Point due to his scholarship, teaching, and mental coaching contributions. His work as an “exemplary scientist-practitioner” earned him the Superior Civilian Service Award from The Department of the Army. Jeff is also an accomplished writer and presenter in the field with multiple book chapters to his name on topics such as team leadership, attention control, and models of performance psychology delivery.

Favorite Quote

“We are what we repeatedly do, excellence then is not an act, but a habit.” —attributed to Aristotle

 

Education & Affiliations

Association for Applied Sport Psychology - Certified Mental Performance Consultant (CMPC)

First Civilian Assistant Professor for the Center for Enhanced Performance at West Point 

Superior Civilian Service Award - US Department of the Army

Florida State University - Ph.D., Educational Psychology, Sport Psychology Concentration 

Temple University - M.Ed., Exercise and Sport Psychology 

Millersville University - B.A., Psychology

Matt Cuccaro

Matt Cuccaro

Matt Cuccaro

Hilton Head, SC

Meet the Coach

Matt Cuccaro brings a wealth of wisdom from his experience to his work with Valor clients. Since 2005, he has consulted and coached Olympians, professional athletes, NCAA All-Americans, NAIA National Champions, sport academies, and Fortune 500 executives. Matt spent a decade creating and leading a player and coach development program at a junior sport academy on Hilton Head Island. Now, he conducts his own practice leading teams, developing individuals, and maintaining collaborative relationships to foster mental and emotional growth—all of which he brings to Valor clients as they lead in tech, finance, venture capital, sales, and healthcare. 

Matt is an accomplished and avid golfer himself. He competed as a professional golfer and has played Augusta National (though not in the Masters). He combines his personal experiences in junior, collegiate, and professional sport, with his active curiosity for understanding the nuances of elite performances in individuals and teams to help his clients reach their full potential. Matt’s TEDx Talk, Courage: Leaning Into Fear, has inspired many to seek and achieve unprecedented levels of performance.

Favorite Quote

“The ultimate measure of a woman/man is not where she/he stands in moments of convenience and comfort, but where she/he stands in times of challenge and controversy.” —Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

 

Education & Affiliations


Association for Applied Sport Psychology (AASP) Member

Boston University - M.Ed. Counseling Psychology, Sport Psychology Concentration

Loyola University - B.A. Business Administration, Marketing Concentration

Caryn Davies

Caryn Davies

Caryn Davies

Princeton, NJ

Meet the Coach

Caryn Davies applies lessons learned from her Olympic rowing experience and her law career to help her Valor clients identify values, set goals, and sustain performance. Her passion for high-performance has fueled her drive to partner with other high achievers and tackle the challenges they face. To date, Caryn’s passion and partnership have impacted the careers of her many Valor clients working in venture capital, corporate c-suites, and non-profit organizations. 

Caryn is an exceptional athlete and all-around high performer. Over her decorated eight-oared rowing career, she has earned two NCAA national titles with Harvard Radcliffe crew, multiple world championships, Olympic Silver at the 2004 Athens games, and Olympic Gold at both the 2008 Beijing and 2012 London games. A lover of all things rowing, she also holds a Hawaii State Championship in outrigger canoe paddling. Today, she serves as a VP of the United States Olympians and Paralympians Association and is currently training for the upcoming summer Olympics in Tokyo. Out of the water, Caryn is a corporate lawyer for a large Boston firm and speaks on panels covering sports law and athletes’ rights. 


Favorite Quote

“As it is not one swallow or a fine day that makes a spring, so it is not one day or a short time that makes a man blessed and happy.” —Aristotle

 

Education, Affiliations, & Accomplishments

Vice President of the United States Olympians and Paralympians Association

US Rowing Board of Directors 

2014 Hawaii State Champion - Outrigger Canoe Paddling 

Five-time World Cup Champion

Four-time FISA World Rowing Champion 

2012 Samsung World Cup II, First Place (World Record) 

2012 Olympics, London - Gold Medalist, Rowing 

2011 Henley Royal Regatta, Princess Grace Cup Winner

2008 Olympics Beijing - Gold Medalist, Rowing

2004 Olympics, Athens - Silver Medalist, Rowing

Two-time NCAA National Champion - Rowing

Columbia Law School - J.D. 

Oxford Business School - M.B.A. 

Harvard University - B.A.

Moses Ehambe

Moses Ehambe

Moses Ehambe

Indianapolis, IN

Meet the Coach

Moses Ehambe combines lessons from his professional basketball career, his passion for elite performance, and his infectious enthusiasm to help his clients tap into their best selves. He is adept at translating his professional athletic experiences to empower and improve the lives of his Valor clients who work in the fast-moving worlds of healthcare, sales, finance, and tech.  

Moses has had a long and storied career in his beloved sport of basketball. A three-point specialist, his professional career has been described as "a real-life version of 'Amazing Race'" that has taken him to four continents. Now back in the States, he has remained connected with his alma mater, Oral Roberts University, as a Special Assistant to the Director of Athletics and Assistant Women’s Basketball Coach. Today, he serves as a Player Development Assistant for the Indiana Pacers and travels the country with the team. Off the court, Moses is known for his effective coaching, leadership, and public speaking skills, which he uses to serve his community.

 
Favorite Quote

“The greatest loss in life is when the greatness inside of you dies while you are still alive.” 

Education, Affiliations, & Accomplishments 


Indiana Pacers - Player Development Assistant

Professional Basketball Player in Spain, Germany, France, Venezuela, Japan, and Qatar (2012-2020)

2012 NBA D-League All-Star

2011 NBA D-League Champion 

2008 Summit League Tournament MVP

Colorado Christian University - Master of Organizational Leadership

Oral Roberts University - B.A., Business Administration

Dr-Sarah-Gascon

Dr. Sarah Gascon

Dr. Sarah Gascon

Auburn, AL

Meet the Coach

Dr. Sarah Gascon’s high-performance lifestyle helps her integrate the lessons she’s learned as an elite athlete into her performance coaching at Valor. Her approach as a mindful, problem-solving coach has empowered her clients in healthcare, tech, and sales to reach their potential. When partnering with Sarah, clients benefit from her charisma, energy, and creativity as they work together to develop strategies for sustainable peak performance. 

An elite athlete in multiple sports, Sarah has competed at the highest levels of softball, volleyball, women’s baseball, and is currently the captain of the USA Team Handball Women’s National Team. After graduating from college a four-time All-Southland Conference softball player and two-time All-Southland Conference volleyball player, Sarah took to the international circuit with the USA Women’s Baseball National Team, placing third in two World Championships and winning one. In 2005, she made her first foray into the world of team handball, and hasn’t looked back since. She was named captain of the team in 2013 and is currently training for the upcoming Tokyo Olympics. 

Off the court, Sarah is also an accomplished academic, earning her Ph.D. in Kinesiology and Exercise Science with the pursuit of researching and teaching others about what builds strong individuals.

Favorite Quote

“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit." —attributed to Aristotle

Education, Affiliations, & Accomplishments


CEO of ESCAPE Therapy

Three-time Bronze Medalist, Pan American Games Qualifier - Team Handball

2018 Pan American Games Qualifier, Gold Medalist, Team Handball

2017 Pan American Championships Qualifier - Silver Medalist, Team Handball 

2016 California Sports Walk of Fame Inductee 

2015 US Olympic Committee Pan American Games Qualifier - Silver Medalist and MVP, Team Handball 

2014 Winter Classic - Gold Medalist and Top 5 Scorer, Team Handball

2010 Southeastern Louisiana University Hall of Fame Inductee

2010 World Championships of Women's Baseball, 3rd place

2008 World Championships of Women's Baseball, 3rd place

2004 World Championships of Women's Baseball, 1st place

Two-Time First Team All-Southland Conference Volleyball Player

Four-Time All-Southland Conference Softball Player

2003 Southeastern Louisiana University Female Athlete of the Year

2002 All-Louisiana Softball Player 

Auburn University - Ph.D., Kinesiology and Exercise Science

California University of Pennsylvania - M.S., Exercise Science and Health Promotion

Southeastern Louisiana University - B.A. General Studies, Minor in History

Clodagh Higgins

Clodagh Higgins

Clodagh Higgins

Sligo, West Ireland

Meet the Coach

Clodagh Higgins leverages her business background, entrepreneurial spirit, and passion for coaching as she helps her Valor clients achieve their personal and professional goals. Her personal and Valor work has impacted elite performers at tech giants, entrepreneurs, high-profile marketing teams and sales agencies, and healthcare practitioners at top hospitals around the world.

Clodagh’s bold spirit and drive towards continual self-improvement led her to start powerlifting at the age of 40. She has gone on to represent Ireland on the world powerlifting stage and currently holds an Irish National bench press record and a World strict curl record. When she’s not coaching or lifting, Clodagh is also an accomplished speaker, having presented at conferences around the world and hosting her own podcast, Agency Life. 

 
Favorite Quote

“To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.” —Ralph Waldo Emerson

 

Education, Affiliations, & Accomplishments 

World Record - Strict Curl 

Ireland Record - Bench Press 

2018 World Powerlifting Championships - Gold Medalist

2018 National Full Powers (Ireland) - Silver Medalist 

2017 World Powerlifting Championships - Gold Medalist

2017 European Powerlifting Championships - Gold Medalist 

Coaches Training Institute - Certified Professional Co-Active Coach  

Certified Reinvention Practitioner

Lesley University - M.Ed. Counseling Psychology

Brown University - B.A.

Joe Jacobi

Joe Jacobi

Joe Jacobi

La Seu d’Urgell, Catalonia, Spain

Meet the Coach

Joe Jacobi's approach to coaching is inspired by his learnings from a 19-year career with USA Canoe & Kayak. He combines this extraordinary experience with a passion for innovative coaching for sustained high-performance in his work with Valor clients. His performance strategies challenge his clients to get outside of their day-to-day rush of life and bring focus to what truly matters most with simplicity, purpose, and flow. To date, Joe’s collaborative coaching has impacted the careers of countless Olympic-level athletes and his Valor clients in top US hospitals, corporate c-suites, tech giants, and on sales leaderboards.  

Joe made history with his extraordinary canoeing career. He is a 10-time US National Champion, has medaled six times at the World Championships, and won Olympic Gold with his partner at the 1992 Barcelona games, the only Americans to hold gold in the sport. Out of the water, Joe has served as CEO of USA Canoe and Kayak, the sport’s national and Olympic governing body. Always the adventurer, he has experienced many unique challenges including paddling a kayak 113 miles from Cuba to the Florida Keys. Today, Joe continues to be active both physically and mentally training for marathons and sharing knowledge and insight on his blog, Sunday Morning Joe.

Favorite Quote

“A master in the art of living draws no sharp distinction between his work and his play; his labor and his leisure; his mind and his body; his education and his recreation. He hardly knows which is which. He simply pursues his vision of excellence through whatever he is doing, and leaves others to determine whether he is working or playing. To himself, he always appears to be doing both.” —Francois Auguste De Chateaubriand

Education, Affiliations, & Accomplishments


CEO of USA Canoe and Kayak (2009-2014)

2005 International Jewish Sports Hall of Fame Inductee 

Six-Time World Cup Medalist - Whitewater Canoe Slalom 

Ten-time US National Champion - Whitewater Canoe Slalom

2004 Olympics, Athens - Whitewater Canoe Slalom

1992 Olympics, Barcelona - Gold Medalist, Whitewater Canoe Slalom

1989 Canoe Slalom World Championships - 5th place 

1989 Canoe Slalom World Cup Series - 3rd Place 

Leadership Development, Leadership Oklahoma City

Catalan language, CFA La Seu, La Seu d’Urgell

Katie-Jones

Katie Jones

Katie Jones

Union City, WA

Meet the Coach

Katie Jones leverages a wealth of knowledge, skills, and her holistic approach to help her clients achieve their goals. She joins Valor after serving as a Master Resilience Trainer - Performance Expert with the U.S. Army where she taught mental skills, resilience, and performance enhancement techniques to military service members, families, and civilians at Joint Base Lewis-McChord. Katie also teaches and mentors performance psychology graduate students at her alma mater, John F. Kennedy University, and conducts her private practice providing customized mental and nutrition coaching to athletes, performers, and exercisers. Since joining the Valor team, her knowledge and client-centered approach has impacted the lives of sales leaders, tech innovators, and healthcare professionals on their journey to sustainable peak performance. 

Katie grew up in California playing several sports before diving into competitive swimming. As a teenager, debilitating pre-race anxiety made it difficult to perform at her best. With the help of her coach, Katie learned to overcome her anxiety through realistic goal setting, self-talk, and visualization. Today, her first-hand experience, knowledge, and passion for coaching help her guide clients towards their optimal performance.  


Favorite Quote

"Be yourself; everyone else is already taken." —Oscar Wilde

 

Education & Affiliations


Bauman College - Certificate in Holistic Nutrition 

John F. Kennedy University - M.A. Sport Psychology

Sonoma State University - B.A. Psychology

Cindra-Kamphoff

Dr. Cindra Kamphoff

Dr. Cindra Kamphoff

Mankato, MN

Meet the Coach

Dr. Cindra Kamphoff leverages her wealth of knowledge, experience, and partnership to encourage her clients to create a bold vision for their future. Since 2006, she has coached high performers, executives, and championship teams including Olympians, players in the National Football League, and leaders of Fortune 500 companies, retail giants, and financial organizations. Cindra’s focused, non-judgemental, and fun approach helps clients create a stronger connection and clarity of their best selves while increasing resilience, courage, and ability to design the life and work they seek. 

Cindra was an elite collegiate athlete herself, earning a scholarship to run track and cross-country. Today, she channels her passion for high-performance into each session as she supports her clients towards sustainable peak performance. Beyond one-on-one coaching, Cindra is also a professor and accomplished speaker, and writer. She speaks at trainings and conferences around the country and it has featured her work in the New York Times, Sports Illustrated, The Huffington Post, and USA Today. Cindra is also the author of an Amazon Bestseller and corresponding workbook, Beyond Grit: Ten Powerful Practices to Gain the High-Performance Edge, and the founder of the top-ranking podcast, High-Performance Mindset.

Favorite Quote

“If your dreams don’t scare you, they aren’t big enough."—Ellen Johnson Sirleaf

Education & Affiliations


Minnesota Vikings - Mental Performance Consultant 

Vice President of the National Speakers Association 

Association for Applied Sport Psychology - Certified Mental Performance Consultant (CMPC)

University of North Carolina at Greensboro - Ph.D., Sport and Performance Psychology 

University of North Carolina at Greensboro - M.S., Sport and Performance Psychology 

University of Northern Iowa - B.A., Psychology; graduated Summa Cum Laude

Dr. Grayson Kimball

Dr. Grayson Kimball

Dr. Grayson Kimball

Boston, MA

Meet the Coach

Dr. Grayson Kimball brings extensive knowledge, applied performance psychology experience coaching, and college-level teaching to his work with Valor clients. Since 2001, he has worked closely with athletes ranging from youth to professional and Olympic levels. As an associate professor at Northeastern University, Grayson teaches sport psychology courses, mentors practitioners in training, and serves as Program Coordinator for the university's sport psychology program. In his private practice, he also provides mental skills coaching for elite athletes. With Valor, Grayson seamlessly brings key performance lessons into the boardroom, c-suite, and hospital as he coaches executives, tech leaders, and physicians towards their optimal state of being. 

Grayson is an accomplished and passionate runner. He has completed five Boston Marathons and has been involved with the iconic marathon for over 15 years, coaching teams like Team Brookline Boston Marathon Charity Team and serving as a consultant for Dana Farber Marathon Challenge. His passions for running and performance coaching have culminated into a book, Grateful Running: Mental Training for the Long Distance Runner.


Favorite Quote

“Sometimes the songs that we hear are just songs of our own.” —Jerry Garcia

Education & Affiliations


Association for Applied Sport Psychology - Mentor

Springfield College - Ph.D. Physical Education, Sport Psychology Concentration

Springfield College - M.S. Physical Education, Sport Psychology Concentration

University of Hartford - B.A. Mass Communications

Niki Lau

Niki Lau

Niki Lau

Denver, CO

Meet the Coach

Niki Lau brings a wealth of personal and professional experience plus diverse training background to her coaching sessions with Valor clients. Over her career, she has worked with athletes of all levels and on multiple continents as well as in the tactical population as a Mental Resilience Trainer - Performance Expert with the U.S. Army. Most recently, Niki applies the skills she gained in impacting elite athletic and military performers to the financial world, supporting adult students in their journey of understanding trading and investing in the stock, currency, and futures market. In her time with Valor, she has applied her experience coaching elite military and athletic performers to help her clients strive for sustainable peak performance in tech, sales, healthcare, and venture capital. 

Niki credits her years as an NCAA Division I athlete with teaching her how easy it is for our mentality to counterproductively affect performance. Today, those personal experiences as an elite athlete fuel her passion for empowering others to get out of their own way mentally in order to achieve their dreams. Niki is also an accomplished presenter and has facilitated teamwork and leadership development workshops for businesses, organizations, teams, and military units. 

 
Favorite Quote

“The world as we have created it is a process of our thinking. It cannot be changed without changing our thinking.” —Albert Einstein

Education & Affiliations

Association for Applied Sport Psychology - Certified Mental Performance Consultant (CMPC)

University of Leipzig, Germany - M.Sc. Diagnostics and Intervention

Lund University, Sweden - M.Sc. Sport Science: Sport and Exercise Psychology 

University of Maryland - B.S Kinesiology

Sarah-Lihan

Sarah Lihan

Sarah Lihan

Washington, DC

Meet the Coach

Sarah Lihan leverages lessons from her Olympic sailing career, skills she picked up as a sailing coach, and a lifelong passion for elite performance to support her Valor clients as they strive for sustainable peak performance. She expertly translates her insight into the mind of an Olympic athlete to the challenges and pressures of today’s ultra-competitive workplace. To date, Sarah’s coaching at Valor has impacted the performance of healthcare practitioners at top US hospitals and elite performers in the tech, venture capital, and non-profit industries. 

Sarah’s exceptional sailing career earned her accolades on national and international stages. She is a two-time All-American and led her team to multiple National Championships as the captain of the Yale University sailing team. Upon graduating, Sarah continued to compete at a high level, and in 2012, she accomplished a lifelong dream of representing the United States at the London Olympic games. When an injury forced her to retire from competition, Sarah saw an opportunity and refocused her efforts into coaching, bringing her skills and passions to the next generation of elite sailors. Today, she continues to coach as she pursues her Executive MBA from the University of Virginia Darden School of Business.


Favorite Quote

“Never give up.”       

Education, Affiliations, & Accomplishments 


Executive Director of the Gulf Coast Youth Sailing Association (2014-2017)

2012 Olympics, London - Sailing 

2012 Sail for the Gold World Cup - Silver Medalist 

2011 ISAF Sailing World Championships

Two-time NCAA All-American - Sailing 

2009 ICSA Women’s National Champion 

2008 Women’s North American Championships - Bronze Medalist 

Dartmouth College Tuck School of Business  - Executive Education Certificate

Yale University - B.A., American Studies: Urban Planning

Matan Lushkov

Matan Lushkov

Matan Lushkov

York, ME

Meet the Coach

Matan Lushkov draws from his father’s military mindset, his personal athletic journey, and a passion for performance to help his clients maintain a healthy, balanced, and high-performing lifestyle. His client-centered approach drives connection with clients as he helps them through the journey of self-exploration and reconnection with their priorities. In his time with Valor, Matan has impacted the lives of entrepreneurs, corporate executives, healthcare professionals, and top performers in tech and finance on their quests to be their best in their respective fields. 

Matan’s passion for performance has grown out of his own athletic successes and failures as well as the value of performance he has seen in individuals experiencing life-altering events. He aptly recognizes that for some, high-performance is a healthy way of life and he strives to help them sustain it. Today, he channels his knowledge and passion into teaching performance psychology at the college level, alongside his coaching and consulting roles. 


Favorite Quote

“Do well while doing good.”—Benjamin Franklin

 

Education & Affiliations

University of New Hampshire - M.B.A., Finance & Organizational Behavior

Boston University - M.Ed., Counseling & Sports Psychology

University of New Hampshire - B.S., Kinesiology

Meghan-Musnicki

Meghan Musnicki

Meghan Musnicki

North Princeton, NJ

Meet the Coach

Meghan Musnicki combines an Olympic mindset with a passion for health and wellness to coach her clients toward sustained peak performance. Her work has helped high performers push beyond their comfort zones and not be afraid of failure. Meghan has been an influential part of the professional journeys of Valor clients who are leaders in tech, healthcare, venture capital, and non-profit organizations. 

Meghan’s athletic career began as a competitive basketball and soccer player, and changed trajectory when she was recruited to join Ithaca College's rowing team during her freshman year. Stepping outside of her comfort zone, she made the decision to try out; a decision that would turn out to take her life path in a new direction. Since that day, Meghan has competed on seven consecutive United States Women’s National Rowing Teams, has won five world championships, and Olympic Gold at both the 2012 London and 2016 Rio games. Prior to making her first team, Meghan’s path was fraught with setbacks as she failed three times to make the final cut for the National Team. Today, she credits those failed attempts with strengthening her resilience and teaching her valuable life lessons that she passionately shares with others. 

 
Favorite Quote

“There is no innovation and creativity without failure.”  —Brene Brown

 

Education, Affiliations, & Accomplishments 


Five-time Gold Medalist at the World Rowing Championships

Five-time Gold Medalist at the World Rowing Cup 

Four-time Silver Medalist at the World Rowing Cup

Three-time First Place Finisher at the US National Selection Regatta

2019 World Rowing Championships - Bronze Medalist

2016 Olympics, Rio - Gold Medalist (Rowing)

2016 US National Selection Regatta I - 2nd Place

2015 US National Selection Regatta I - 3rd Place 

2013 World Rowing Cup II - Bronze Medalist

2012 Olympics, London - Gold Medalist (Rowing) 

2012 World Record at World Rowing Cup II 

2011 Remenham Challenge Cup Winner, setting the course record at Henley Royal Regatta

2010 US National Selection Regatta II - 3rd Place 

2005 NCAA Division III All-American 

Ithaca College - Bachelor of Science, Psychology

Chinazom Nwabueze

Chinazom Nwabueze

Chinazom Nwabueze

Crofton, MD

Meet the Coach

Chinazom Nwabueze combines experience in the corporate world and a passion for performance psychology as he empowers his clients to new levels of performance. Over 18 successful years in investment banking at several top global institutions, Chinazom saw a widespread need for mental fitness coaching in his colleagues. He knew he could help and went back to school to earn a degree in performance psychology. Today, Chinazom conducts his own private practice serving professionals in the U.S. and the U.K. and presents workshops at international performance psychology conferences. His collaborative and empowering coaching style has impacted the lives of his Valor clients as they strive for sustainable peak performance as leaders in tech, healthcare, and sales.  

Originally from the United Kingdom, Chinazom is a gifted athlete himself, competing in several sports throughout his lifetime, including football (soccer), squash, and rowing. He has also completed two marathons and has rowed across the English Channel as a 6-person crew for charity. Now residing in the United States, he continues to enjoy an active lifestyle along with coaching and consulting.

 
Favorite Quote

“Is it useful for performance? Is it in your control? The rest is just noise.”

 

Education & Affiliations 

Certified in Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) 

Certified in Acceptance Commitment Therapy (ACT)

Staffordshire University - M.Sc. Performance Psychology

University of Leicester -  M.B.A.

University of Leicester - B.A. Business Economics

Whitney Otto

Whitney Otto

Whitney Otto

Cambridge, MA

Meet the Coach

Whitney Otto leverages her vast experience working with athletes, teams, large-scale companies, academic institutions, and non-profit organizations in her work with Valor clients. Since 2002, she has impacted the performance of countless elite performers including Olympic athletes, physicians at top US hospitals, and leaders at tech giants. Her work draws from emotion science, leadership development, and team-building skills to partner with clients to build resilience, effective communication, enhanced motivation, action planning, and engagement.

Whitney draws inspiration from her experiences as a World Champion rower and mental health counselor. Her passion for psychology and the deep explorations she has encountered as a therapist combines with a focus on action and motivation that she learned as a competitor into a high-performance coaching approach rooted in connection, honesty, humor, clarity, experimentation, and celebration. Whitney is also currently co-authoring a book with her husband on the application of psychological science to sport performance.

Favorite Quote

“If you want to go fast, go alone.  If you want to go far, go together.” —African Proverb

Education & Affiliations

Four-time US National Team Rower, World Champion (Rowing) 

2000 Sydney Olympics - Rowing (Alternate) 

Certification, Professional Co-active Coach (Coaches Training Institute)

Lesley University - M.Ed. Counseling Psychology

Brown University - B.A.

Dr-Rob-Owens

Dr. Rob Owens

Dr. Rob Owens

Greensboro, NC

Meet the Coach

Dr. Rob Elliott Owens brings a passion for high performance, inclusive leadership, and wellness to his work with Valor clients. Since 2011, he has consulted with professionals in higher education, elite collegiate athletes, and emerging leaders as they pursue excellence in their fields. Rob’s eclectic coaching style draws from existential, narrative, social justice, and trauma-informed coaching approaches to create a collaborative and empowering relationship with his clients.

Rob’s passion for performance and organizational justice has also led him into the classroom, inspiring positive organizational psychology and inclusive leadership in future professionals and leaders. His workshops and courses cover sustainable peak performance topics such as authentic leadership, workplace wellness, diversity and inclusion, and organizational culture. 


Favorite Quote

“Get in good trouble, necessary trouble.”—John Lewis

 

Education, Affiliations, & Accomplishments

 
Association for Applied Sport Psychology - Certified Mental Performance Consultant (CMPC)

North Carolina Board of Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselors - Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counseling Associate (LCMHCA)

2018 National Wellness Institute Circle of Leadership Inductee 

University of North Carolina at Greensboro - Ed.D., Kinesiology with emphasis in Sport Psychology 

North Carolina State University - M.Ed., Clinical Mental Health Counseling 

University of North Carolina at Greensboro - M.Ed., Higher Education 

Temple University - B.A., Psychology

Tiffeny Parker

Tiffeny Parker

Tiffeny Parker

Santa Monica, CA

Meet the Coach

Tiffeny Parker combines lessons from her professional athletic career, infectious charisma, and a passion for high-performance coaching to help her clients bridge the gap between actions and accomplishments. Her relationship-oriented approach creates an empowering environment that impacts the well-being and performance of her clients. In her time with Valor, Tiffeny has helped healthcare professionals at top U.S. hospitals, corporate leaders, small business owners, and top performers at tech giants alike dream and achieve sustainable peak performance. 

Tiffeny began her athletic career as a top-ranked triple jumper in California, which segued into competitive careers in the heptathlon at the collegiate and national levels. In 2017, she crossed over into the winter sliding sport of bobsled where her power and speed from track propelled her to tie for the highest overall rookie combined score. Today, Tiffeny continues to train with USA Bobsled in pursuit of the next winter Olympics in Beijing while also coaching others to strive and reach for their goals.

Favorite Quote


“To give anything less than your all, is to sacrifice the gift.” —Steve Prefontaine

 

Education, Affiliations, & Accomplishments  

USA Bobsled

USA Track & Field - Heptathlon

National Academy of Sports Medicine - Personal Training Certifications
Azusa Pacific University - M.B.A.

Azusa Pacific University - B.A.

Dr. Lea Ann Parsley

Dr. Lea Ann Parsley

Dr. Lea Ann Parsley

Granville, OH

Meet the Coach

Dr. Lea Ann Parsley leverages her dynamic background as a healthcare professional, firefighter, Olympian, and coach to help her clients achieve and maintain high performance. Since 2006, her experience in high-pressure roles and evidence-based coaching has impacted the lives of elite athletes, healthcare physicians at top US hospitals, top performers at tech giants, and corporate executives alike. A lifelong learner, she is also currently pursuing her associate coach credential with the International Coach Federation having completed her certification with Coaching Training EDU. 

Lea Ann is a woman of many talents. A gifted athlete, she enjoyed an exceptional college career in basketball, high-jump, and javelin. She then made the transition to the winter sliding sport of skeleton. In 2002, she won Olympic Silver in skeleton at the Salt Lake City Games, the first American woman to medal in the sport. Also in 2002, Lea Ann was inducted into the Marshall University Athletics Hall of Fame for her incredible collegiate and post-collegiate careers. Outside of her athletic achievements, Lea Ann is a registered nurse, health educator, and decorated firefighter. She was named the Ohio Firefighter of the Year in 1999 for her part in rescuing a mother and daughter from their burning home. Today, she continues to lead her life in the pursuit of helping others as a performance coach and registered nurse working in school health.  

 
Favorite Quote

“When you walk to the edge of all the light you have and take that first step into the darkness of the unknown, you must believe that one of two things will happen. There will be something solid for you to stand upon or you will be taught to fly.” —Patrick Overton

Education, Affiliations, & Accomplishments

2004 United States National Champion - Skeleton 

2002 Olympics, Salt Lake City - Silver Medalist, Skeleton (First American Female Olympic Medalist) 

2002 Marshall University Athletics Hall of Fame Inductee 

2000 World Cup - Silver Medalist, Skeleton

1999 Ohio Firefighter of the Year 

Two-time Marshall University Dorothy Hicks Female Athlete of the Year

1989 All-Southern Conference Honors - Basketball 

1988 Southern Conference Champion - Javelin

The Ohio State University - Ph.D., Community Health Nursing

The Ohio State University - M.S., Community Health Nursing

University of Virginia - B.S., Nursing 

Marshall University - B.A., Adult Health

Andy-Riise

Andy Riise

Andy Riise

Montgomery, TX

Meet the Coach

Lieutenant Colonel (Retired) Andy Riise leverages his distinguished military career and extensive experience in performance psychology to help individuals, leaders, and teams get better at what they do. Since 2000, he has impacted the careers of high performers in healthcare, corporate c-suites, major universities, Major League Baseball, and the National Football League. Andy has also facilitated the development of future Army officers at West Point’s Center for Enhanced Performance and the U.S. Air Force Academy’s Department of Behavioral Science and Leadership. Today, he serves as an Outreach Program Coordinator at Texas A&M University’s Coaching Academy and mental skills coach for the Cincinnati Reds all while pursuing his Ph.D. in Educational Psychology. Since joining Valor, Andy’s expertise and passion for elite performance has impacted leaders in sales and one of the world’s largest tech companies. 

Andy served his country valiantly over a 20-year career in the U.S. Army. Over his 20-year career, he held multiple leadership positions where he trained, managed, and synchronized operations in countless austere missions over multiple combat deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan and served in two elite Special Forces units. Now retired, he uses his first-hand experiences and expertise in Leadership and Sport and Performance Psychology to his personal and fun energy style of coaching. Andy is also an accomplished speaker and author of the bestselling book, Deliberate Discomfort: How US Special Operations Forces Overcome Fear and Dare to Win by Getting Comfortable Being Uncomfortable.

 Favorite Quote

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena.”—President Teddy Roosevelt, The Man in the Arena

 

Education & Affiliations 

Lieutenant Colonel (retired), United States Army

Cincinnati Reds - Mental Skills Coach

Association for Applied Sport Psychology - Certified Mental Performance Consultant (CMPC)

Stanford University, Global School of Business - Executive Education Certification 

Argosy University - M.A. Exercise and Sport Psychology

United States Military Academy at West Point - B.S. Legal Studies 

Anna-Ringsred

Anna Ringsred

Anna Ringsred

Victoria, BC, Canada

Meet the Coach

Anna Ringsred channels her experience in elite speedskating and her passion for mental performance coaching to help her clients reach their own goals. Her approach provides her clients a safe space for self-exploration and a deeper understanding of their unique motivations. With Valor, Anna works with executives in finance, leaders in tech, and healthcare physicians at top US hospitals to help them achieve sustainable peak performance. 

Anna found a love for speedskating amidst an active upbringing. While in high school, she earned a spot on the US Junior National Speedskating Team and moved to Canada to train more intently after graduation. Her dedication paid off and soon after, she hit the world stage, competing in over 18 world cups and championships over 9 years. Anna experienced a devastating setback when she narrowly missed qualifying for the Olympic team in 2010. Yet with mental coaching to propel her forward, she persevered and accomplished her dream of representing the United States at the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics. Now retired from the sport, Anna credits her experiences with teaching her the valuable lessons that she wants to share with others to reach their own goals. Today, she looks to bring sustainable peak performance to her clients and the Earth as she consults with high performers while working on climate change policy.

 
Favorite Quote

"Our greatest glory is not in never failing, but in getting up every time we do" Confucius

 

Education, Affiliations, & Accomplishments

2014 Olympics, Sochi - Speedskating 

2014 US Olympic Trials - 2nd Place, 3000 meters 

2014 US National Championships - 3rd Place, 3000 meters

2010 US National Championships & Olympic Trials - 3rd Place, 500 meters

2010 US National Championships & Olympic Trials - 3rd Place, 1000 meters

2010 US National Championships & Olympic Trials - 3rd Place, 1500 meters

2010 US National Championships & Olympic Trials - 3rd Place, 5000 meters

University of British Columbia - M.A.S., Sustainable Energy Systems 

University of Calgary - B.S., Chemical Engineering

Robert Rothbart

Robert Rothbart

Robert Rothbart

Tel Aviv-Yafo, Tel Aviv District, Israel

Meet the Coach

Robert Rothbart combines years of professional basketball experience and a deep-seated passion for personal development to coach ambitious individuals towards sustainable high performance. He seamlessly translates lessons he has learned as a professional athlete to his Valor clients working in the ultra-competitive arenas of business, tech, healthcare, venture capital, and sales. 

Robert’s lifelong passion for basketball has taken him around the world and the highest international stages of basketball. Originally signing with Indiana University, he decided to forgo the NCAA to play professionally in Europe, signing with teams in France, Slovenia, Poland, Turkey, Italy, Cyprus, and Bosnia. Over his career, Robert has earned multiple league awards and competed for league championships. Today, he continues to play professionally in Israel and mentors his younger teammates with his performance coaching skills.

 Favorite Quote

“Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world.” —Albert Einstein

Education, Affiliations, & Accomplishments  

2017 Liga Leumit (Israel) Championships - Runner-Up 

2015 Israeli Basketball Super League - Most Improved Player 

2014 Israeli League - All-Star and Most Valuable Player 

2014 Israeli League - Most Improved Player

2010 Israeli Basketball State Cup - Semi Finalist  

Boys and Girls Clubs of America - Speaker 

Arizona State University - Bachelor of Arts, Global Business Leadership

Dr. Christine Sanchez

Dr. Christine Sanchez

Dr. Christine Sanchez

Virginia Beach, VA

Meet the Coach

Dr. Christine Sanchez leverages her experience with elite performers, professional athletes, first responders, and military personnel (including Special Operations and Navy SEALs) to help others achieve their true potential and live a life full of purpose & joy. Since 2005, she has specialized in providing mental skills training and executive coaching for optimal performance in high pressure scenarios. Christine is best known for her work targeting mindful performance under pressure, productive failures, and well-being optimization. Since joining the Valor team, her expertise has been instrumental in the growth of top salespeople and leaders at one of the world’s largest tech companies. 

Christine was an elite collegiate athlete herself, competing in the sports of swimming and rowing. After years of grueling training, she has come to realize the importance of recovery and now enjoys integrating the more recovery focused yoga practices both for herself and into her work with clients. Christine is also an accomplished presenter and has delivered speeches and workshops domestically and internationally to a variety of high-performance audiences. 


Favorite Quote

“Each day is another opportunity for greatness.” 

 

Education & Affiliations


Association of Applied Sport Psychology - Certified Mental Performance Consultant (CMPC)

International Coaching Federation - Associate Certified Coach 

Florida State University - Ph.D. Educational Psychology, Performance Psychology Concentration

Temple University - M.Ed. Exercise & Sport Psychology

Virginia Tech - B.S. Naval Architecture & Marine Engineering

Dan-Smith

Dr. Dan Smith

Dr. Daniel Smith

Chapel Hill, NC

Meet the Coach

Dr. Dan Smith leverages a deep understanding of psychology, leadership, and elite human performance to help and inspire others to meet the dynamic challenges they face. Since 2010, he has impacted the lives of corporate leaders, top military personnel, and healthcare providers to find sustainable peak performance. Dan’s practical experience in the military, business, and education has helped him connect and empathize with his Valor clients as they grapple with their personal and professional challenges in the worlds of finance, tech, and venture capital. 

During his 25 years of commissioned service, Dan served in command and executive leadership positions at every level of the military. As deputy commander in Afghanistan, he led and inspired a 1,650-person combat battalion, operating daily across 1,500 square miles of unforgiving terrain.  With his expertise, Dan also spent several years as a Professor of Behavioral Sciences and Leadership at the United States Military Academy at West Point. As a psychologist, he has 15 publications to his name in areas spanning leadership development systems, team dynamics, motivation, organizational justice, biases in decision making, and more. Now retired from the military, he continues his passion for elite human performance through his coaching of leaders and high performers.

 
Favorite Quote

“Opportunity is missed by most because it’s dressed in overalls and looks like work.” —Thomas Edison

 

Education & Affiliations


Lieutenant Colonel (retired), United States Army

Georgia Institute of Technology - Ph.D., Industrial and Organizational Psychology, Minor in Quantitative Methods & Analytics

Georgia Institute of Technology - M.S., Engineering Psychology

Missouri University of Science and Technology - M.S., Engineering Management

United States Military Academy, West Point - B.S., Environmental Engineering

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Inga Stasiulionyte

Inga Stasiulionyte

Vilnius, Lithuania

Meet the Coach

Inga Stasiulionyte leverages her experiences as an Olympic javelin thrower, business analyst, and mental strength coach to help her Valor clients discover new heights. Her athletic work has impacted European Champions, Olympians, and National Record holders. Off the playing field, Inga seamlessly translates her coaching to drive the performance of her Valor clients—elite professionals in top U.S.hospitals, tech-industry giants, and corporate c-suites—as well as future leaders as the Head of the MIT Sports Entrepreneurship Bootcamp. 

Inga earned an impressive set of accolades over her javelin career. She is a multiple-time Lithuanian National Champion, two-time PAC-10 Champion, NCAA Champion, four-time NCAA All-American, and represented Lithuania in the 2008 Beijing Olympics. As a senior at the University of Southern California (USC), she earned the distinction of being the first female in PAC-10 history to win a throwing event in four straight seasons. For her collegiate accomplishments, Inga was inducted into USC’s Track and Field Hall of Fame in 2012. Today, she continues her athletic legacy developing Olympian mindset training programs and serving as a mental strength coach for Olympians and Olympic hopefuls. 

 
Favorite Quote

“Vincit qui se vincit - He conquers who conquers himself.” 

Education, Affiliations, & Accomplishments


2012 University of Southern California Track and Field Hall of Fame Inductee 

2008 Olympics, Beijing - Javelin

Four-Time NCAA All-American - Javelin

National Champion, Lithuania - Javelin 

2004 PAC-10 Champion - Javelin

2001 NCAA National Champion - Javelin 

2001 PAC-10 Champion - Javelin

Head of MIT’s Sports Entrepreneurship Bootcamp (2017-2020)

Massachusetts Institute of Technology - Global Entrepreneur Bootcamp 

International University of Monaco - Master of Science, International Business and Global Affairs

University of Southern California, Marshall School of Business - B.A. Entrepreneurial Studies 

Dr. Lauren Tashman

Dr. Lauren Tashman

Dr. Lauren Tashman

New York, NY

Meet the Coach

Dr. Lauren Tashman has impacted performers from all arenas and levels since 2003. She has consulted with a wide breadth of high performers, from elite athletes and Olympians to VPs of public tech companies, leading legal professionals, and the performing arts. Most recently, she serves as a Mental Performance Coach for Golf and Body NYC and the Canadian Women’s National Softball Team, the Director of Mental Training for the G2 Girls Golf Academy, and conducts her own practice reaching people around the world. With Valor, Lauren’s work has helped sales leaders, innovators in tech, physicians at top US hospitals, and venture capitalists stay on top of their game when it matters most. 

Lauren fell into a passion for performance coaching, earning her Ph.D. in Educational Psychology after 13 years of elite equestrian show jumping. Her budding career in the sport was halted after a series of falls shook her confidence and motivation. Today, she leverages personal experience with her skills from years of training, research, and coaching, to help others navigate the ups and downs of the pursuit of excellence. Lauren is also an accomplished writer, speaker, and presenter in the field. She is the co-host of The Path Distilled podcast and has co-edited three books: Becoming a Sport, Exercise, and Performance Psychology Professional: a Global Perspective; Global Practices and Training in Sport, Exercise, and Performance Psychology; and Performance Excellence: Stories of Success from The Real World of Sport and Exercise Psychology. 


Favorite Quote

“If you never push yourself beyond your comfort zone, you will never improve.” —Dr. K. Anders Ericsson

Education & Affiliations

Association for Applied Sport Psychology - Certified Mental Performance Consultant (CMPC)

Florida State University - Ph.D. Educational Psychology, Sport Psychology Concentration

Florida State University - M.S. Educational Psychology, Sport Psychology Concentration

The College of New Jersey - B.A. Psychology

Shameema Yousuf

Shameema Yousuf

Shameema Yousuf

London, England

Meet the Coach

Shameema Yousuf brings a diverse background as a former banker and fund manager, elite international athlete, and psychologist to her work with Valor clients. Since 2010, she has made a career supporting the performance and mental health of elite athletes and executives across the globe. Shameema has led a psychology program for the Brighton Hove Albion Football Club (soccer) in the UK, serves as the consultant sport psychologist for the Zimbabwean Olympic Committee, mentors early career practitioners, and conducts her own practice in the U.K. and Zimbabwe. Her former career in finance allows her to effortlessly translate her performance psychology knowledge for her clients at Valor, helping leaders in sales, tech, and healthcare achieve sustainable peak performance. 

Shameema’s work extends into advocacy and diversity and inclusion initiatives transnationally, serving on several international committees. In 2020, she was recognized on the Muslim Women’s in Sport Powerlist for her esteemed contribution to sport. An international force, Shameema has presented around the world on mindfulness and performance, cultural sport, and performance psychology, has 20 publications to her name in numerous journals and books, and has been featured on world media channels including the BBC, Sky Sport, and Wimbledon Radio. 

 
Favorite Quote

“Dream with ambition, lead with conviction, and see yourself in a way that others might not see you, simply because they’ve never seen it before.” —Kamala Harris

Education & Affiliations 

Muslim Women in Sport Powerlist 2020

Association for Applied Sport Psychology - Certified Mental Performance Consultant (CMPC)

American Psychological Society (APA) - Division 47 Member 

British Association of Counseling and Psychotherapy - Registered Counsellor

Health and Care Professions Council (UK) - Registered Sport and Exercise Psychologist 

British Association for Sport and Exercise Science (BASES) - Member and Supervisor 

Boston University - M.Ed. Counseling Psychology, Sport and Performance Concentration

Brunel University, UK - M.Sc. Business Finance

City University, UK - B.Sc. Joint Honours Economics and Accountancy

Iris Zimmermann

Iris Zimmermann

Iris Zimmermann

Rochester, NY

Meet the Coach

Iris Zimmermann leverages a wealth of experience from her impressive career as a World Fencing Champion, Olympian, and businesswoman to coach others towards finding personal and professional success. In her post-fencing career, she owned and operated the Rochester Fencing Club with her sister for nine years. In that time, the pair doubled club membership and moved to a space triple the size of the original fencing club. Today, Iris brings all of her talents, knowledge, and skills into her coaching of Valor clients as they strive towards sustainable peak performance as they lead global tech companies, physicians at top US hospitals, high-growth sales teams, and financial institutions. 

Iris is known in the fencing world as a record-breaker and a woman of many firsts. At just 14 years old, she became the first World Fencing Champion from the United States in any age or weapon category. Iris went on to become one of the youngest participants to win a National Championship and the first medalist in US history for women's foil at the 1999 Senior World Championships. Iris participated in the 2000 Sydney Olympics and is the 2001 NCAA Fencing Champion. In 2013, she was inducted into the US Fencing Hall of Fame for her record-breaking career. She continues her legacy through teaching the sport of fencing to all ages, is the first and currently the only female commentator for the International Fencing Federation, and currently serves as a VP of the U.S. Olympians and Paralympians Association. 

 
Favorite Quote

“Crisis has two meanings-one is danger and the other is opportunity.” —George Mumford

 

Education, Affiliations, & Accomplishments


Vice President of the United States Olympians and Paralympians Association

2013 United States Fencing Hall of Fame Inductee 

Three-time Div. I National Champion 

2001 NCAA Fencing Champion 

2000 Olympics, Sydney - Fencing (Foil) 

1999 Senior World Championships - Bronze Medal, Foil (First American World Medalist)  

First American Junior World Champion

First American Cadet World Champion

University of Rochester, Simon School of Business - M.B.A.

Stanford University - B.A. Political Science

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