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Press Release

Press Release

Executive Coaches Train Nonprofit Leaders in Boston

Social Innovation Forum and MSPP Graduate Executive Coaching Program Form Unique Partnership

BOSTON (West Roxbury), MA (October 24, 2006)—The Executive Coaching Graduate Certificate Program at the Massachusetts School of Professional Psychology (MSPP) and the Social Innovation Forum have formed a partnership to provide non-profit executives with three months of free executive coaching from MSPP students in the final phase of their graduate training, according to officials at both organizations. It is the first collaboration of its kind in the region to pair a graduate executive coaching program and an organization dedicated to supporting non-profit organizations.

According to Dr. Lew Stern, director of the MSPP program and president of Stern Consulting, executive coaching is a billion-dollar U.S. industry, but the meeting of non-profit executives and executive coaches is rare. He says MSPP’s program and the partnership with the Social Innovation Forum are unique in stressing the importance of helping develop non-profit leaders and assist them in achieving the organizational missions: “This arrangement offers our students an unusual opportunity to work with leaders committed to public service who—because of budget constraints—may not always have access to services such as executive coaching. It also reflects MSPP’s ongoing commitment to the community, which we hope to kindle in all of our graduates.”

Susanne Musinsky is the director of the Social Innovation Forum, which supports nonprofit leaders—or social innovators—whose organizations have proven highly effective in addressing Greater Boston’s most pressing social problems. She says, by helping social innovators, the partnership promises to have a significant impact on the future of Boston. “These are a group of senior executives who, by nature of the work they have chosen, have passion and commitment to making change in our community. They are the social sector leaders who are working day in and day out to make changes in real root cause issues. As a group, they and their organizations will be the key change agents in five to ten years in our city.”

Brian Mann, a second-year MSPP student, who is also a Vice President of Human Resources at Boston Scientific, says he is one of the executive coaches working with a non-profit executive: "This is a great opportunity to apply effective coaching skills and techniques in a professional non-profit forum. My goal is to partner with the executive by applying impactful yet practical tools and techniques to support his leadership and organizational challenges."

David Howse, Director of Programs and Community Impact at the Boston Children's Chorus states "I'm very interested in the coaching opportunity as I hope that it will help make me a more effective leader within my organization and contribute toward strengthening the work of the entire Children's Chorus."

To date, more than a dozen social innovators have signed up for the coaching services of MSPP’s newly minted executive coaches. Included among the 12 are executives from ROCA (Reaching out to Chelsea Adolescents), Social Capital, Inc., and Close to Home.

MSPP established the first graduate executive coaching program in New England two years ago, and its first class has completed coursework and is ready to meet its final credentialing challenge—an intensive 12-week practicum experience. MSPP’s program, unlike other executive coaching programs in New England, goes beyond the traditional training common to training programs designed for “life” coaches. In addition to excellent training in the basic coaching, listening and advising skills needed by all coaches, the MSPP program immerses its students in the business of business, relationship building, organizational development, leadership, communications and psychological principles.

“When our students leave this program, they have much more than technical expertise in coaching, they also have the knowledge and skills in business, psychology, and organization development to serve as executive coaches to leaders of a variety of businesses and other organizations,” said Stern. Each of the practicum coaches will be guided by their own Master-coach supervisor. Seventeen of these supervisors, leaders in executive coaching in the Boston area, are donating their time to this effort to contribute to the community and the development of the program’s highly qualified executive coaches.

An initiative of Root Cause, a non-profit consulting and research firm, the Social Innovation Forum aims to shift the flow of local resources, both financial and non-financial, by building a Philanthropic Investment Community (PIC) that offers time, talent, relationships and money to support the most effective, efficient and sustainable organizations working to solve social problems in Greater Boston. Each year through an intensive application and evaluation process, the Social Innovation Forum chooses a group of up to six social innovators who then receive intensive support, including senior-level consulting and executive and presentation coaching.

Founded in 1974, MSPP’s innovative clinical teaching program has given rise to generations of professionals who are today’s leaders in the field of clinical psychology as well as compassionate healers in their communities. MSPP continues to build on the innovative legacy of the past, while creating new programs, methods and models for training young professionals to meet the challenges of the 21st century—challenges that will not only test their skills in new ways, but bring psychologists into nearly every facet of modern life.

Updated 9/14/07

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