Who We Are

Who We Are

StepUp Leadership was created to bring more humanity into the world of business.  We are passionate about leadership and committed to helping individuals transform themselves and the organizations they serve. As life-long learners, we lead by example with a process that is fun, engaging and relevant. Our senior consultants have decades of experience developing programs for a broad range of leaders, from skeptical engineers to C-level executives. Our goal is simple. We aim to help leaders develop their own unique style in a way that is curious, collaborative and courageous.

Kate Roeske-Zummer

Chief Inspiration Officer, Co-Founder

Kate brings over 20 years of experience to her coaching and leadership development work. She specializes in helping individuals and teams explore their own strengths and weaknesses so they can lead by example and make an even bigger contribution to the world. She is passionate about bringing more humanity into the workplace by coaching leaders to become more present, emotionally intelligent and relational.

Kate's Full Bio

Kate believes that transformation is possible for everyone. She helps clients identify their unique opportunities – and what may be standing in the way – so that they can become the leaders they we meant to be. Kate believes that reactive management styles are ineffective and that vulnerability-based leadership creates stronger relationships, more authentic connections and better results. Through online 360s, Kate dives deep with clients. Her skill-based approach helps leaders cultivate the communication skills and values that drive success across the organization.

Since 2003, Kate has worked with both corporate and nonprofit clients, including Mozilla, Pinterest, Adobe, DaVita, CBS Interactive, United Way of America, RW Baird, Leo Burnett, Ogilvy and Mather and The Colorado Education Initiative. Her work has been focused on being a part of a deep cultural shift in organizations, where she has helped leaders examine their values, accountability and what it means to be a contributing member of the organization. This has resulted in big shifts – within the organizations themselves, as well as within their shared language, leadership development and understanding of what it means to be a leader.

Kate began her career at Ogilvy & Mather where she eventually rose in the ranks to become Strategic Planner, Senior Director. Her primary focus was on strategic development for such Fortune 500 companies as Ponds, Dove, United Way and Kodak. Kate also served on the faculty of the Coaches Training Institute for nearly eight years where she delivered training throughout North America, Canada, England and South Africa.

Recent Leadership Coaching Clients

  • CEO (Not-for-Profit)
  • CFO (Advertising)
  • EVP, Operations (Technology)
  • SVP, IT (Financial Services)
  • Directors, VPs (Technology Companies)
  • VPs (Healthcare)
  • Director, Management Consulting (Training and Development)
  • SVP, Public Relations (Healthcare)
  • VP, Operations (Healthcare)
  • 40 Directors and 5 VPs (Multiple Functional Areas, Technology)

Debbie Cohen

Leadership Catalyst

Debbie is a change agent whose richly diverse journey has led her from preschool teacher to executive leader in Global Fortune 100 companies. Her published case study was recognized by Berkeley-Haas in 2013 as providing the most important contribution to management education in the preceding year. The breadth of her industry experience is diverse as well. She has held leadership roles in tech, entertainment, media, advertising, and in the nonprofit world. Not surprisingly, Debbie is sought after for her creativity and thought leadership in complex, evolving systems.

 

Debbie's Full Bio

Debbie is a change agent whose richly diverse journey has led her from preschool teacher to executive leader in Global Fortune 100 companies. Her published case study was recognized by Berkeley-Haas in 2013 as providing the most important contribution to management education in the preceding year. The breadth of her industry experience is diverse as well. She has held leadership roles in tech, entertainment, media, advertising, and in the nonprofit world. Not surprisingly, Debbie is sought after for her creativity and thought leadership in complex, evolving systems.

Debbie believes that systemic change cannot happen without individual change, and that individual change requires a responsive environment to nurture the effort. This both/and approach to management is at the core of her leadership development style. If there’s an elephant in the room, you can count on Debbie to put it squarely in the middle of the table, with warmth and humor, so that everyone can take part in the conversation. She then facilitates change at the point of greatest need and least resistance, honoring the capacity for change in individuals and organizations. As additional need is demonstrated, more support is offered. Transformation happens in phases based on the readiness to learn, assimilate and grow.

Debbie has held executive Human Resource positions for First Look, the Mozilla Corporation, Razorfish and Time Warner. Prior to Time Warner, Debbie was the Senior Strategist for Bright Horizons Family Solutions, where she was known as a leader in human-capital management, dependent care and work/life balance. Debbie is committed to balancing the needs and interests of individuals with those of the broader organization to unleash the power of possibility in the midst of complexity.

Executive and Team Coaching – Industry Experience

  • Technology (Mozilla Corporation)
  • Media and Entertainment (Time Warner & First Look Media)
  • Advertising (Razorfish)
  • University (Stanford)
  • Public Sector (Department of the Interior)
  • Early Childhood Education (Bright Horizons)
  • Start-up (First Look LLC)

Lauren Powers

Leadership Catalyst

Lauren Powers is a Master Certified Coach and a senior faculty member of the Coaches Training Institute, where she has trained professional coaches since 1999. She believes that inspiring leadership is based on a satisfying mix of achieving results, relating to others and being grounded in personal values. When leaders learn to approach their work lives from this resonant place, everyone is made more powerful.

Lauren's Full Bio

With over 20 years of experience, Lauren is dedicated to her clients’ growth, progress and freedom. Through executive coaching, leadership development and cultural transformation, she supports individuals, teams and organizations to initiate and sustain positive and significant change. Her primary goal is to help leaders realize their highest vision, power and productivity, while helping them recognize their potential contributions to organizational problems.

Lauren is the author of The Trouble with Thinking, a guide to how our perceptions create our realities. Her specialty is working with people and teams on the “thoughts behind the behaviors.” Identifying interpretations and assumptions is the starting point for real transformation. From there clients are able to communicate more skillfully, include and trust others, face up to conflict and stretch into their vision.

Lauren also facilitates a number of workshops for individual and organizational change: Foundations of Leadership, Business Leader Program, Interpersonal & Relationship Skills, Systems Thinking, Playing a Bigger Game, High-Performance Teams, Collaborative Action and Large Group Events.

Lauren began her career with Motorola as an Organization Development Consultant, where she worked with business units on leadership development, process improvement and group dynamics. She was then promoted to direct the change-management aspects of a large-scale software implementation. In this role, she specialized in the most important aspect of any successful change: including the people who must live with it into the decision-making process.

Executive and Team Coaching – Industry Experience:

  • Technology (Microsoft, CSC, IBM, Motorola)
  • Healthcare (Elekta)
  • Finance (Royal Bank of Scotland, Wells Fargo, American Express, ING, Tudor Investments, Royal Bank of Canada, The Federal Reserve, Tom Group-Hong Kong)
  • Travel/Hospitality (Marriott Hotels)
  • Education (Shantou University – China)
  • Media/Entertainment (Scripps Networks)
  • Manufacturing (Mobile Modular)
  • Consulting (YSC, CapGemini – France)
  • Government (TSA, IRS)
  • Retail (Nike, Adidas)

Recent Leadership Coaching Clients:

  • EVP, Sales (Technology)
  • SVP, Creative Services (Cable TV)
  • VP, Analytics (Finance)
  • Director, Human Resources (Insurance)
  • Director of Americas and Direct Reports (Management Consulting)

Jeffrey Jacobson

Leadership Catalyst

Jeffrey Jacobson is an executive and corporate coach and facilitator with over 20 years of experience. He works with clients to manage change, enhance performance, discover cutting-edge solutions, and create sustainable working environments. His current roster consists of clients from all over the world who seek him out for his sharp, innovative insights.

Jeff's Full Bio

Jeff has been a faculty member of the Coaches Training Institute (CTI) since 1999, where he has taught thousands of students the inner workings of the coach approach to work and life. He has developed educational programs, supervised students throughout their certification process and has set the standard for top-level teaching and training.

Jeff also teaches CTI’s Co-Active Leadership Program, where entrepreneurs, managers and executives work together in a retreat setting to ignite their inherent leadership strengths as well as create innovative projects for their organizations and communities. He is well-known for engaging his students to achieve optimum results with focus, ease and finesse.

Jeff co-founded Fork in the Road Learning with a mission to bring awareness to automatic thought processes based on the Ladder of Inference model. He uses this process to help clients eliminate their reactive habits in order to create fresh ways of working and communicating.
 

Jeff currently splits his time between Los Angeles and Shanghai, China, where he oversees the training of Chinese Leaders for the Coaches Training Institute. He also leads coach-related training and corporate development in Mandarin and English.

Prior to coaching and training, Jeff studied Asian culture and language for years throughout the East and Southeast Asian regions, and went on to teach Mandarin Chinese to business executives from Ford, Motorola and Texas Instruments. Additionally, he has worked as an interpreter and translator.

Executive and Team Coaching – Industry Experience:

  • Automotive (Ford Motor Company)
  • Technology (Motorola, Texas Instruments, IBM)
  • Finance (Wells Fargo, American Express, China Merchants Bank)
  • Travel/Hospitality (Alaska Airlines, Marriot Hotels)
  • Healthcare (Fairview Hospitals)
  • Industrial (Cummins, Cargill, Siemens)
  • Retail (C&A, IKEA)
  • Consulting (Schouten China)

Ken Mossmann

Leadership Catalyst

Ken Mossman is an executive coach with an international clientele of individuals from such diverse industries as finance, higher education, law, entertainment, medicine, venture capital, technology and the arts. Ken helps clients enhance their leadership by developing their emotional literacy, fluency and flexibility. By taking ownership of their innate creativity and wisdom, clients can better serve their organizations, communities, families and, of course, themselves.

Ken's Full Bio

Ken Mossman is an executive coach with an international clientele of individuals from such diverse industries as finance, higher education, law, entertainment, medicine, venture capital, technology and the arts. Ken helps clients enhance their leadership by developing their emotional literacy, fluency and flexibility. By taking ownership of their innate creativity and wisdom, clients can better serve their organizations, communities, families and, of course, themselves.

Ken has over thirty years of experience in facilitation, leadership and curriculum design. His coaching and leadership style is intuitive, incisive, irreverent, more than occasionally provocative and always fun and engaging. He is a senior faculty member and curriculum designer for The Coaches Training Institute (CTI), and has been leading their coach-training programs since 2005. He is also a leader and supervisor for CTI’s Certification Program. Ken has gained a reputation among his students and colleagues as a heart-centered, compassionate holder of a higher bar of learning.

Ken understands first-hand why the journey is so important for the ultimate destination of future leaders. His own professional career has led him through the snowy mountains of Wyoming, on to art school, into the fitness industry, and finally to CTI as a leader in Co-Active Coaching. He looks forward to helping clients realize their full potential, both as professionals and human beings.

Recent Leadership Coaching Clients

  • CEOs (Law, Finance, Commodities)
  • CTO (Technology)
  • SVP (Finance, Food Service, Advertising/Media)
  • Director/VP (Energy)
  • Middle Management (Finance, Technology)

Executive and Team Coaching – Industry Experience

  • Arts
  • Aerospace
  • Medicine
  • Education
  • Venture Capital
  • Banking
  • Home Products
  • Small Business/Entrepreneur
  • Logistics/Relocation

Athena Katsaros

Co-Founder, Leadership Catalyst

Athena brings over 25 years of experience in the corporate and non-profit arenas to her leadership development and executive coaching. She specializes in working with leaders who are committed to being catalysts for positive change in their organizations and beyond. She is passionate about helping both individuals and teams develop emotional intelligence, relationship skills and visionary thinking.

 

Athena's Full Bio

Athena helps leaders become change agents by discovering their authentic voice, values and vision – and having the courage to act on them. As a trusted partner, she listens, challenges and guides her clients to meet their goals, overcome their most persistent challenges and turn their visions into reality. Through online and interview-based 360s, Athena provides insight into what each leader excels at, when and how that become reactive and where they need to focus their development.

Since 2003, she has worked with a wide a range of organizations to create cultural shifts that inspire people at all levels to take greater responsibility and make a positive difference. These include Mozilla, Airbnb, Pinterest, Microsoft, Avaya, Medtronic, Kaiser Permanente, DaVita, CBS Interactive and the US Special Forces.

Prior to being a leadership development consultant, Athena was a senior-level marketing communications strategist for Fortune 500 high-tech companies that included Cisco Systems, Microsoft, Hewlett-Packard, Sun Microsystems and Xerox. In this role, she was responsible for setting the strategy as well as planning, developing and directing integrated marketing campaigns, national and international training programs and large conferences and events.

Recent Leadership Coaching Clients


  • CEO (Mobile Technology)
  • CEO (Global Communications Distribution)
  • CEO (Government Contractor)
  • COO (Technology)
  • VP of Product (Technology)
  • Global Head of Employee Experience (Technology)
  • Executive VP, Brand Leadership (International Nonprofit)
  • Senior VP, Human Resources (Technology)
  • Senior VP, Business Development and Senior VP Human Resources (Government Contractor)
  • VP, International Operations (Healthcare)
  • VP, Medical Affairs and VP Sales (Healthcare)
  • 40 Directors and 5 VPs (Multiple Functional Areas, Technology)
  • University Dean (Higher Education)