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Laura Sterkel is a seasoned performance and leadership coach and strategist, serving organizations, business and community leaders. Laura’s strengths-based approach stems from her belief that we are all at our best and most effective when we connect vision, action and positive impact. She helps her clients realize their potential, capitalizing on change and opportunity.

Laura gained leadership experience in senior level roles in marketing, sales and strategic planning at financial services and investment firms. For nearly two decades, she led innovative initiatives at investment industry leaders, including Fidelity Investments and Goldman Sachs. In her coaching over the past decade, she has worked with well-recognized organizations and senior level professionals with extensive frontline visibility and organizational impact. She co-founded Chicago Financial Women where she was involved with professional development initiatives and has a long-standing relationship with Menttium Corporation, coaching rising star women professionals. Together with her executive coaching work, Laura coordinates over 200 professional development programs annually and oversees a team of 50 volunteer career coaches as Director, Programs & Coaching at Career Transitions Center of Chicago (CTC), a nonprofit organization, serving professionals in career transition and advancement.

An avid supporter of arts and community organizations, Laura has devoted energy and enthusiasm to volunteer coordination, marketing, development and leadership. She was instrumental in the creation of OnBoard, a professional development program for executives seeking fulfilling service on nonprofit arts boards for the Arts and Business Council of Philadelphia and Chicago. She also served as Senior Consultant and practice partner for the Board Development Consulting initiative at the Arts & Business Council, Chicago, an income-generating consultancy furthering critical leadership of arts board through change and leadership. She recently became an officer of Fourth Presbyterian Church, Chicago, and will chair Adult Education, offering rich programming that furthers multi-faceted perspective.


Education, Certifications, Faculty, Publications

  • Coaches Training Institute
  • The Purpose Project, Richard J. Leider at the University of Minnesota
  • Graduate study, The Managers Program, J.L. Kellogg Graduate School of Management, Northwestern University, Chicago, Illinois and Weatherhead School of Management, Cleveland, Ohio
  • Over a decade of ongoing study and practice in professional development and leadership 
  • Leader/mentor development with Menttium Corporation

Areas of Expertise

  • Strengths-based Leadership Development
  • Emotional Intelligence
  • Managing and Leading Change
  • Executive Presence
  • Communication and Influence
  • Teambuilding
  • Team Facilitation