Aspire - Leadership for the future

The Aspire team features experts across the world. All are highly-experienced executive, career and life coaches, program leaders and trainers who are at the top of their respective fields.

Each member was selected for his or her expertise and passion on coaching and leadership development that empowers and advances women as leaders in life, work and world.


To schedule a complimentary consultation with our coaching team, click here.

Aspire Board

ASPIRE program, service offerings, and quality standards are governed by a seasoned panel of programme leaders, executives, and coaches. Their role is to provide expertise, support, and inspiration to the entire ASPIRE team around the globe.

Janet Jenkins, Director of Operations and Logistics

Janet Jenkins

Janet Jenkins is in charge of all aspects of ASPIRE program operations, customer service and logistics.

Janet qualified in medicine from the University of London in 1985 and worked as a pathologist before reading Law at City University and being called to the Bar at Middle Temple, UK in 1994. She then took a career break to look after her family and returned to work with ASPIRE.

She holds an MB, BS, a DipL and is a Barrister-at-law.  She is a member of the Professional Negligence Bar Association and a member of Mensa.

Advisory Board

Cathy Lindquist, Global CFO, Added Value

Cathy Lindquist

Cathy is the global CFO of Added Value, a brand development and marketing insight consultancy with offices in 22 cities in 14 countries. Cathy was first introduced to Aspire through executive coaching and has attended many of our open programs.

“To me, Aspire’s programs and services offer a unique approach to personal and professional development. Surrounded by highly diverse, intelligent and successful individuals, every interaction is an opportunity to learn, grow and challenge oneself to think differently”.

Jane Chesworth, Business Strategy & Finance Consultant, Former COO, Christie's International plc

Jane Chesworth

Until 2008 Jane was Global COO of Christie's, the Art Auction business, operating primarily in UK, US, Hong Kong, mainland China, France, Switzerland, Middle East and Russia.  She had Board responsibility for Strategy, Finance, Operations, IT, HR and the non-auction businesses.  Prior to joining Christie's in 2000, Jane was a Partner in PwC where she provided strategic business advice to international companies in connection with their finance raising, merger, acquisition and disposal activities.  Jane now works as an independent adviser to international companies.

“I am very keen to use my own experiences to help Samantha and the Aspire team to expand their business and Foundation activities.  I would love to see as many women as possible being given the opportunity to join the Aspire network and to benefit from excellent leadership and personal development coaching skills.  This will help ensure they are best equipped and have the tools they need to succeed in their chosen career, leadership positions and life paths”.

Jane Swift, Programme Director, Retail 21CN & Portfolio Management, BT

Jane Swift

Jane Swift is BT’s Programme Director of Retail 21CN & Portfolio Management and a pioneer in the creation of The BT Executive Women’s Network. Jane, who is a mother of 3, wife and social advocate, is deeply passionate about seeing women advance and fulfil their potential.

A long time fan of Aspire, Jane joined the Aspire Advisory board to be able to give back, contribute to the not-for-profit charitable organization, The Aspire Foundation, and be part of a group of people who aim to change the world, one person at a time.

Aspire Coaches

Dr. Sam Collins

Dr. Sam Collins

Women’s leadership speaker and advocate, social activist and author.

Dr Sam Collins is the founder and CEO of ASPIRE, an internationally-recognized and award-winning leader in leadership development, diversity and social responsibility for women leaders.

Sam is an inspirational speaker and addresses women's conferences, corporate and entrepreneurial events and workshops. She has worked with over 10,000 women business leaders over the past 13 years and has contributed to The Financial Times, CNN, The Times and the BBC Global Business Report.

Sam was named one of the Top 200 Women in the UK to Impact Business & Industry by HM The Queen of England. She is also the winner of an Ogunte Women's Social Leadership Award in the category of Leader in the Workplace and was shortlisted for the Women in Marketing Award. Her PhD thesis examined the future world of work for women as leaders and she is the author of a soon-to-be published book, 'Go MAD – Women Leaders Making a Difference'.

Sam is passionate about making a difference for women both in and outside of the boardroom which is why she started The Aspire Foundation. This not-for-profit foundation offers pro-bono mentoring, fundraising and campaigning for women in charities, social enterprises and community projects that are making a difference to women and girls across the world.

Originally from the UK, Sam followed her dream and now lives in California, near the ocean, with her husband, Robert, and 3 children.

Robert Silverstone

Robert Silverstone

Robert Silverstone is an internationally known author and speaker in the field of personal development. He’s the author of several books, has created many audio programmes and videos and has appeared on radio shows. A leading advocate for the empowerment of women, he is also the Director of The Aspire Foundation which has the goal to empower 1 billion women by 2020 through mentoring and technology.

He is the creator of The GROW Principle® Series and his book titles include “In The Moment” and “GROW Your Relationship With Money”. Silverstone was named as “One of the Top 50 Minds on Personal Development” by Leadership Excellence magazine.

For over 30 years, Robert has had a passion for helping people grow and develop and he has worked with executives in multinationals to growing entrepreneurial firms and leaders in non-profits. The common theme is that these individuals have a desire to be the best they can be and recognize that they can consciously make a difference to their performance, their business and the world around them.

As far back as 1992, Robert was recognised as a leading thinker in making profits while working to improve the global environment.Known as one of the first ‘Eco – Preneurs’, Robert was featured in the national press for his highly successful company ‘Ecologic International’ spreading the message that profits can equate to responsible corporate behaviour that is changing the world.

Robert is based in the US.

Carolyn Dawson

Carolyn Dawson

Carolyn’s areas of specialism include inspirational leadership, emotional intelligence, developing confidence, life-balance, managing change and personal impact and effectiveness for women who want to create change in their life, workplaces and the world at large. Her clients describe her as warm, empathetic, deep, supportive yet challenging and say that she gets to the core of things to enable change that is heartfelt, sustainable and meaningful yet very business driven. She relishes helping women leaders demonstrate their potential, recognize their brilliance and believe that anything is possible.

She is an executive coach, trainer and workshop leader who has trained hundreds of women leaders and managers in coaching skills. Examples of Carolyn’s recent assignments include helping design and lead 'The Talented Women Program' (focusing on presence, impact, networking, influence and career management) at KPMG LLP and BDO LLP, delivering training in leadership coaching to hundreds of leaders and managers in Network Rail as a Senior Course Leader and coaching Directors and Executives to become more creative and inspiring decision makers and leaders. Her clients include The Open University, The Co-Operative Group, Neal's Yard Remedies and The Woodland Trust.

Prior to joining Aspire, Carolyn worked for over 20 years at British Telecom where she led teams and change initiatives and developed and managed customer satisfaction and coaching programs.

She holds a CPCC professional coaching qualification from The Coaches Training Institute (CTI), one of a select group of coach training schools in the UK that is accredited with the International Coach Federation (ICF), the leading standards and accreditation body for coaches worldwide and is an ICF credentialed coach (Professional Certified Coach), a licensed career coach and has earned her accreditation in Emotional Intelligence. Carolyn is a graduate of CTI’s 10-month San Francisco-based Co-Active™ Leadership Programme.

Passionate about women developing the power of their leadership femininity aligned with authenticity and balance, Carolyn is a powerful force for women who aspire to do and be more in their life, work and world.

Carolyn is based in the UK.

Yasmin El-Dabi

Yasmin El-Dabi

Yasmin is an experienced and highly skilled executive coach and facilitator. Her work facilitates clarity and focus whilst opening up choice and possibility for the individual and the business.

Her areas of specialism include working with women who want to tap into their true potential and uncover new territory for themselves and their organisations, leadership, career transition and work life balance. Her clients describe her signature style is intuitive and intelligent, gentle yet challenging, direct and humorous.

She is a Certified Professional Co-Active™ Coach (CPCC) from Coaches Training Institute (CTI) and has also completed Relationship Systems Fundamentals (Centre of Right Relationship) and Transactional Analysis 101.

Yasmin has a consultancy background, spanning teambuilding, idea generation and development, strategic visioning, cultural change programmes, qualitative and quantitative diagnostics as well as work-life balance programmes. She has worked across a wide selection of industries, including British Airways, Tesco, Heinz, Shell, Royal Bank of Scotland, Royal Sun Alliance, NESTA (National Endowment for Science, Technology and Arts) and many more.

She is a member of the International Coach Federation and has a Degree in Translation, the main subject of which was Economics, Germany. Yasmin is also fluent in German.

Yasmin in based in the UK.

Gloria Baldino

Gloria Baldino

Gloria’s coaching clients include high potentials, mid managers and executives from Fortune 100, medium and small business, as well as non-profits such as the UN Development Program.

During her 30 year business career, she experienced many of the professional and personal opportunities, successes, accomplishments, challenges, fears and set-backs her clients are facing today - just about anything and everything imaginable in a career and work environment. And the impact, both positive and negative, this can have on one's personal life. Gloria’s uses her career and life experience and coach training to maximise results and personal fulfilment for her clients.

Gloria has 30 years of experience in sales, sales management and sales executive positions, including 23 years with IBM and Microsoft, and the last 7 years as a sales executive with 2 private equity owned digital marketing companies. She has been responsible for hiring, training, and developing sales professionals and sales managers as well as driving profitable revenue results and customer satisfaction.

Her teaching experience includes two years working as a curriculum developer and trainer for the Microsoft - Urban League "Youth IT Challenge" program. She spent 7 years in her early career teaching at the high school and university levels, including a year in France on a Fulbright Scholarship.

Gloria is based in the US.

Heather Luxion

Heather Luxion

Heather Luxion is a Purpose Coach, working with a wide range of clients around the world since 2008. She is trained and certified by the Coaches Training Institute as a Certified Professional Co-Active Coach (CPCC) and accredited by the International Coaching Federation as a Professional Certified Coach (PCC). A communications expert with a fascination for peaceful forms of conflict resolution, her degree is in Communication Studies with an emphasis on mediation and alternative forms of dispute resolution. She has over 300 hours of training in coaching and leadership development, including work on the neuroscience of coaching and behavioural change.

Before coming to coaching, Heather worked in graphic and web design, first running her own design firm serving a wide range of clients and then working as lead designer for a magazine in the nonprofit sector. Her experience as an entrepreneur as well as in the nonprofit world have served her well in the coaching industry, allowing her to better serve a wide range of clients — from corporate to small business to solopreneur to not-for-profit to academic. The creativity, unique perspective, open-mindedness and inquisitive curiosity she carries over from the design world are evident in her coaching work. Her coaching sessions are often a balanced mix of laughter and light with transformative depth. Heather is known for her insightful intuition, keen eye for BS that doesn’t serve clients in their lives, and a willingness to challenge her clients to live their most meaningful life.

Heather serves on the International Coaching Federation Board of Directors in Chicago, as well as Chicago Community Representative for the Coaches Training Institute, bringing a new depth of conversation and learning to the coaching community.

Heather is based in the US.

Hilary Lees

Hilary Lees

Hilary is a highly experienced, dynamic Career and Leadership Coach who blends powerful, challenging coaching with her warm engaging style to empower women leaders to overcome challenges to their growth and development and find fulfilment in their careers. Clients say she brings both energy and intellect to her work, find her grounded and easy to talk to, and have described her coaching style as engaging, powerful, positive, challenging, creative, perceptive and rigorous.

A professionally qualified Coach for five years Hilary has supported many women to overcome limiting beliefs and develop confidence in their abilities; find their authentic leadership style and enhance their presence and impact; step up into new leadership roles; take the leap into self employment; manage transitions before and after taking maternity leave and negotiate work-life balance.

An Occupational Therapist by background Hilary spent twenty years working in the UK National Health Service (NHS) in the mental health field which has honed her capacity to work with a range of sensitive, personal issues and effectively build strong working alliances with clients from many diverse cultural backgrounds.

A working Mum herself Hilary is well versed with the pressures of juggling home and work commitments and dealing with the ever present demands of our over-connected, over-busy, extended working lives. In particular eight years working in a Psychological Therapies Service have given her firsthand experience of supporting clients cope with the after effects of this cultural overload: stress/ burn out and associated anxiety and depression. As a result she is uniquely placed, with her specialist knowledge, tools and techniques, to help you not just survive in the workplace but thrive and develop resilience and resourcefulness as you take steps forward to release your potential.

Hilary is based in the UK.

Carole Adams

Carole Adams

Carole is an Associate Certified Coach (ACC) and Facilitator working with Teams and individuals. Her passion is to help people gain clarity and confidence in their own resourcefulness. She loves to help them overcome the barriers to success in the things that matter to them. Her clients describe her as warm, grounded, insightful yet practical, challenging and direct when needed.

She has experience working with Boards, Management Teams and whole organisations on strategic planning, consultation events, team building/ development and Away Days. She works with individuals as both a Personal and Leadership Coach.

Carole has over 25 years’ experience of working in the Third Sector, 15 of which was at Chief Executive Officer (CEO) level. As CEO she had overall responsibility for all aspects of the organisations she led including Strategic Planning, Fundraising, Finance, Stakeholder Engagement and Service Delivery and Staffing.

Carole trained in individual Coaching at the Coaches Training Institute (CTI) and Organisation and Relationship Systems Coaching (ORSC) at CRR Global.Carole has a Certificate in Training & Development from Institute of Personnel Development (CIPD) and has completed Alchemy Facilitation Training with CRR Global. She is a member of the International Coach Federation (ICF).

Carole is based in the UK.

Sophie Castell

Sophie Castell

Sophie is passionate about helping people who dare to lead their lives and to embark change, for the sake of their happiness and dreams. She supports clients by offering clarity, trust and confidence to go through their life journey and is an enthusiastic coach who combines firmness and determination with a real care and strong belief on a client’s possibilities. She creates a secure, positive still challenging environment to help people find their way.

Prior to becoming a coach, Sophie spent 14 years in Unilever in different marketing positions. She has hands on experience in leading teams, developing talent and designing and implementing business and marketing strategies.

Sophie holds a Bachelor Master in Business Administration with a Major in Marketing from Esade (Barcelona) and a Postgraduate on Humanitarian Aid from UOC.  Sophie is CTI certified and ORSCC trained and has Spanish and French nationality which allows her to coach in these 2 languages as well as in English. 

Sophie is based in the US.

PJ Chan

PJ Chan

PJ guides, educates and inspires people so they can become significantly better individuals and leaders, successfully transform their lives and organizations to greatness, and build a better world for future generations. PJ believes, to the core of her being, in the power of possibility. Her passion is unleashing that power in people so they can live their lives to their fullest potential, positively impacting the world for the betterment of all.

She has over 20 years of experience as a coach, facilitator, and advisor to the C-suite and senior leadership teams of Fortune 500. She spent six years working with the world-renowned Dr. John Kotter coaching clients to help them address their most critical business challenges. Prior to Kotter International, PJ was a member of Deloitte Consulting’s global Human Capital Practice. Here she created and executed solutions for the people-related challenges associated with large-scale transformations in global companies. In both organizations she coached leaders, teams and individuals to break down barriers and accomplish their goals.

As a Master Facilitator she has deep expertise leading teams through business and cultural transformation workshops, seminars and retreats. Topics include opportunity definition, vision creation, leadership alignment, strategy execution, organization and team mobilization toward achieving critical goals, and leadership development at all levels.

PJ holds coaching credentials from the International Coach Federation (ICF) and the Coaches Training Institute (CTI): Professional Certified Coach (PCC) and Certified Professional Co-Active Coach (CPCC). She obtained her Bachelor of Arts from Regis College in Weston, Massachusetts, and Doctor of Chiropractic Degree from Life University in Atlanta, Georgia.

She is a member of both the Co-Active Coaching Network and the International Coach Federation.

PJ is based in the US and lives in Austin, Texas with her husband John and their Yorkie, Tigger.



  • Solid commercial and senior level background: they have walked in your shoes and understand the corporate, not for profit and small business worlds.
  • Extensively trained and specific expertise in gender diversity and the needs and aspirations of female leaders.
  • Wide-ranging experience: they are at the top of their field and will pass their vast experience on to you.
  • Committed to inspiring and empowering: their approach is to support you to see “the wood for the trees” and to achieve your specific goals, not to tell you what you should and should not do.
  • Pragmatic, measurement-based approach: they ensure you create sustainable plans with practical actions with measurable results.
  • Walking their talk: they are committed to being role models and to demonstrate authentic and inspirational leadership inside and outside of work.

7 Ways to Help You Move Forward

Feeling stuck? Sometimes all it takes to move forward, even take gentle baby steps, is an encouraging word in your ear. Aspire’s CEO, Dr Sam Collins, offers seven simple pieces of wisdom to help you move to the next level.


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