Working with Kris provided me with a routine and structure to meet my personal goals.

I entered coaching with what I thought were specific goals, but Kris helped me better define them and get to a place of being able to implement them. She provided helpful activities and exercises that aided in values clarification and encouraged self-exploration. I really liked that we had regular sessions that held me accountable and kept me on track. Kris struck a nice balance between following my lead and pushing me to set timelines and be specific about plans so that I could continue to move forward. I loved how Kris could pull out my creative side and help me name what is really important to me. Although I routinely receive supervision/consultation related to my clinical and teaching work, I have never received professional coaching or even considered it before this. Now, I am a total convert. This experience was different from supervision but complemented and enhanced it. I highly recommended coaching with Kris as an investment in your own professional development. 


Kristina Risley has done an amazing job of career counseling with me.

She has given me the tools to determine what it is I want, why I want it, and how it all fits into where I want to be headed. Kris is the embodiment of “active listening” who genuinely cares about her clients. I feel very confident about the action items we crafted for my future career steps. Kris showed me the truth that, when you take action, good things happen. ”


“I love the work you are doing!”, “You are doing amazing things!”, “Keep going!”, “I believe in you!”

These are just a few phrases I have heard from Kris over the time that I have been benefiting from her coaching services. She has provided me with wise insights and points of reflection coupled with support, encouragement, and a belief in me that I didn’t even have in myself. She has helped me to grow as a leader, a public health professional, and as a person. I truly have learned so much from Kris. By gently encouraging me to look inward, she has also made me a more reflective public health professional, a skill that all professionals can benefit from. Kris is extremely thoughtful and really considers different perspectives. She understands that coaching requires more than a one-size-fits-all approach, and I feel like she has taken every step to ensure that her approach with me meets me where I am personally and professionally. Being in a professional role where I have to balance multiple staff with varying personalities and numerous projects with differing timelines all at once, it is easy to get into a routine that might not be as healthy or productive as it could be. My coaching sessions with Kris have provided me with a “time out” to reflect on what I am doing, and more so, how I am doing it so that I can be a more effective and productive leader. She has really taught me so much, and I have nothing but glowing recommendations about Kris to provide to others seeking coaching and leadership development. Kris has helped me to grow as a person, as a professional, and as a leader more than she will ever know. ”


Our company recently participated in a 30 minute guided mindfulness session led by Dr. Kris Risley.

The event was a smashing success, with participation from nearly 50% of the company, including our entire leadership team. Through the entire process, Dr. Risley was cognizant of our company’s needs and designed the session in such a way that included both our office and remote-based employees. The session stimulated great discussion internally and furthered our desire for more regular mindfulness activities/practices. I highly recommend Dr. Risley for designing and leading corporate mindfulness exercises!”

Sigma Health Consulting, LLC, McLean, VA

I admire Kristina Risley, DrPH, CPCC.

She is insightful, kind, wise, and innovative. She introduced me to concepts of leadership, and how life coaching and the strengthsfinder assessment can be used as tools to enhance one’s leadership skills, emotional intelligence, etc. I will be forever grateful to her for friendship, mentorship, and continued support throughout my career.”


I wanted to send a note of thanks for our coaching call last night.

It didn’t go at all as I expected, but it needed to happen. And who better to walk through it than you?! You are the most patient, non-judgmental person I have ever met. I appreciate you truly listening and helping me walk through my challenges. I feel so much better about my situation already.

I have already spoken with my colleagues about setting strict work hours and scaling back or eliminating my involvement in extraneous activities. Even simply putting it out there is a relief.”


It might not seem very significant to many but it happened so naturally.

I have been thinking about our conversation every day. It has truly had an impact on me. One thing in particular that I noticed was when I got to work after our conversation I began to clean my office. And as I was cleaning I realized that I was making space for the good things to come my way. I reflected on what you said about when you move things out of the way it gives room for things that you desire to find you. “


I was fortunate to be working with Kris while figuring out transitioning out of graduate school and into the public health workforce.

Kris is the Mary Poppins of career coaching- always encouraging and supportive, never phased, and carrying a full toolbag of ideas, activities, and resources. Students and recent grads can get easily overwhelmed by the voices of professors, bosses, family and the media (at least I did!); Kris is an expert at helping people tune in to what really matters to them and take concrete steps towards living a life consistent with their values.”


I began working with Dr. Kris Risley as I was transitioning into a senior management position with the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment.

Kris was instrumental in reinforcing my strengths; however, she also supported me in identifying other approaches to leadership and professional development (e.g., authentic leadership, executive presence, etc.). Kris shared with me some of the latest literature regarding leadership and management styles; she gave me “homework” and provided worksheets as “real life” tools. I appreciated that Kris took the time to understand my needs and then customized the coaching experience accordingly. I could not have asked for a better professional coach! Thank you Kris!!”


The impact of Kris’ coaching is instantly known by those she works with.

She has a unique ability to really hear what is most important and also see what might be blocking the way. With a deft touch, she can help unpack it all and then work with you to co-create a path forward. I’ve worked with Kris a number of times and have always left our time together with more clarity, connection and immediate steps to help move me forward.”


I entered into a coaching relationship with Kris to explore my personal and professional career “next steps”.

Her style and expertise were instrumental in helping me to clarify what I wanted to see in my career as well as identifying potential new areas to explore. She was also very insightful in directing me to better know myself and my preferences in both the personal and professional arenas. Having been a bit of an innovator in government and walking that sometimes “lonely” road, she helped me validate the value of my efforts and gave me the confidence to continue onward. As a result of her assistance and support, I recently received a Title V Lifetime Achievement Award from the federal Maternal and Child Health (MCH) Bureau and have started my own consulting business. I highly recommend Kris as a coach as her skills in mentoring along with her knowledge of MCH are exceptional.”


I worked with Kris during my RWJF nurse executive fellowship.

She listened carefully and really help me grow as a leader. I am more confident, take risks and am a strong collaborative leader thanks to support from RWJF and coaching like Kris provided! Thanks.”


I benefited greatly from my coaching with Kris on a personal as well as professional level

I had completed a few leadership trainings before, but Kris’ approach to personal leadership was different. She diffused my initial incredulity by showing much understanding and almost palpable care. I opened up and she gently channeled me to look deep inside, find myself and lead from my strengths.

As a result of her coaching I took the bold step of applying for a job that was better aligned with my passion (women and children’s health) even though it was a big risk. Because of the coaching I have a clearer view of who I am and where my values really lie. Thank you, Kris.”


I work in a highly bureaucratic organization and frequently interact with diverse groups. My ability to effectively communicate and interact with these groups is critical to the success of my work.

Over the course of one academic semester I participated in several coaching sessions with Kris and over that time I began to develop an understanding of how my unspoken perceptions and attitudes were affecting my interactions with members of these groups. During our sessions, she provided me with very useful feedback and recommended several strategies to help me improve my personal communication skills. She also assisted me in the identification of my personal and professional strengths and encouraged me to utilize these strengths, as they are critical to my success.

My interactions with others are now much more thoughtful and I am beginning to see the benefits of emphasizing my strengths (as opposed to dwelling on my short-comings). I’m grateful for the time I spent with Kris and I would highly recommend her to anyone looking for assistance with personal and professional development.”


Kris is the most influential mentor I have had throughout my academic and professional career.

She instilled in me the confidence and clarity to achieve my professional goals and “step into” my leadership shoes. Kris’ ability to disentangle the various challenges that we all face and provide simple solutions in order to find the most fulfilling path is truly remarkable. I am forever grateful for her honest and life-changing advice.”


Your sessions were extremely helpful to me. I can’t say enough about them and have not yet stopped singing your praises.

You helped me get my groove back, and I thank you for all your assistance. My renewed confidence in my ability to affect change is a direct reflection of our regular sessions during last Summer’s course. I am expecting great things to occur in my life in 2013. Thanks again for the push!”


The work Dr. Kris Risley and I did together in the summer of 2012 was integral in helping me move my professional career forward.

Often as leaders, we get caught up in the frenetic activity that is urgent and sacrifice two tenets in the process:
Putting the critical first and marrying our heart and brain in our interactions with team members. People work for the “why”, they understand the “what” or we wouldn’t have hired them and you can always train the “how”. Kris helped me refocus and place the “why” front and center. May seem simple, but it is a difficult discipline to incorporate consistently in the face of deadlines and deliverables.”


After 7 months of twice-monthly coaching calls with Kris, I have gained greater clarity and focus and I’ve de-cluttered my office space, email inbox, and mind.

These are interrelated and powerful aspects of my life. This de-cluttering has resulted in my being able to make better decisions more quickly. I am able to model my coaching experience (and how Kris interacts with me) to more respectfully interact with others – staff, students, family and friends. This has led to better supervision of staff and greater productivity, and happier interactions with family and friends.

Keys to my success: Kris has coached me to be able to better articulate my values and recognize where and when my life conflicts with or reflects those values. From that place she helps me brainstorm solutions and try them out. Paying attention to how things are working (or not) is a key to my success. Focusing on one thing at a time is also another key. Until I was well into my coaching experience with Kris, I did not realize how important my “view”/immediate physical environment was to my wellbeing. A de-cluttered office space with flowers and pictures of family and friends creates a more peaceful and productive environment for me.”


Kris is an amazing personal and professional coach who has helped change my life.

She listens intently, immerses herself in understanding, has an incredible tool kit of exercises to pull from, and pushes just the right amount to get to deeper levels of understanding and meaning. Importantly, there are actions associated with the coaching both during the sessions and afterwards, so the work continues outside the sessions. Put in the work, she will too, and you’ll be amazed at what happens to you. Our work together has been transformational for me.