Our Team



Emily Bermes began consulting in 2000 and has significant experience in executive coaching, organizational and executive assessment, leadership development, ‘new-to-role’ officer transitions, and culture shaping disciplines. Her work has covered a wide spectrum of industries in the Fortune 500 environment including financial services, commodity, CPG, pharmaceutical and life sciences.

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Her unique consulting approach blends her skills as a social science researcher with her 15+ years of experience as a senior-executive coach, organizational consultant, and facilitator to address the most complex organizational and human capital challenges. Emily’s portfolio of skills and business experience have made her a widely sought-after coach to “C” suite executives and a trusted advisor to senior management teams and Boards of Directors.

Prior to career in professional services, Emily was a Resident Faculty Member at Indiana University-Purdue University for twelve years. While in academia, she was an Honors Faculty member, published researcher, and the academic administrator of the University’s largest program.

Emily holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Interpersonal and Organizational Communication and a Master’s Degree in Business and Professional Communication from Purdue University. She is a Certified Professional Co-Active Coach (CPCC); a credential widely recognized as the most prestigious and rigorous in the executive coaching industry.


/ Lauren Elliott, Executive Coach /

Trained at the venerated Coaches Training Institute, Lauren is a Certified Professional Co-Active Coach and has worked with executives in industries including finance, mining, biotech, manufacturing and consumer package goods.

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Prior to her work as an executive coach, Lauren spent 17 years in high-profile sales and marketing roles in the advertising and promotions industry where she worked extensively with decision makers in corporations including LVMH, Cisco, Chiron, Bank of America, Mizuno, and Wired Magazine.

Lauren holds a Bachelor Degree in Humanities from the University of California at Berkeley. She completed a year abroad in Spain attending the Universidad Compultense de Barcelona and speaks, reads and writes Castellano.



With nearly 20 years of coaching experience, Kira is nationally known for her dynamic and down-to-earth approach guiding executives, managers and work relationships to reach their full potential and expression. Kira’s coaching is practical and positive, and draws on the inherent wisdom in each person to enable them to access their inner guidance system for achieving what matters most. In addition to her work with Emily Bermes + Associates, Kira is on the teaching faculty of the pioneering CRR Global (www.crrglobal.com) where she mentors coaches in mastering Organization and Relationship Systems Coaching.

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Prior to her coaching career, Kira has 15-years leadership experience in start-up, change management and business development in both the private and not-for-profit sectors.

Kira conducted her training with the internationally renowned Coaches Training Institute where she earned her distinction as Certified Professional Co-Active Coach, and has advanced training in personal and organizational Relationship Systems Coaching. Kira is certified by the International Coach Federation as a Professional Certified Coach, and is an alumna of University of California at Berkeley.


/ Donna Krone, Executive Coach /

Ms. Krone is a Professional Certified Coach with a 30-year business background in financial and health care services. Her vast experience in business, combined with her warm interpersonal skills, gives her a unique presence as a powerful leadership coach. She is a member of the Institute of Coaching Professional Association (ICPA), affiliated with Harvard Medical School.

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A trusted partner who consistently exceeds expectations, Donna helps promote meaningful and sustainable change in individuals and organizations. Donna uses a multi-dimensional approach in her unique offerings focused on Professional Development, Leadership Training, Creativity and Innovation.

Donna received her coach training and her Certified Professional Co-active Coach (CPCC) certification at The Coaches Training Institute (CTI), the premier international coaching school accredited by the International Coach Federation (ICF). She also earned the prestigious Professional Coach Certification (PCC) credential from the ICF. Donna is a graduate of a yearlong CTI leadership intensive in Northern California, which develops both internal competencies and high impact front-of-the-room leadership skills. Donna is a teacher and curriculum designer for the True Purpose Institute™ and Life Change Artists™, training coaches and consultants in advanced level coaching skill mastery. Donna recently completed a term on the board of directors for the Life Planning Network. Donna is an Executive Coach with Kinsley Group, where she brings her powerful coaching style to senior and mid-level leaders. She also has a private practice in Boston, where she works with leaders, and individuals seeking to bring more meaning, purpose and creativity to their personal and professional lives. Donna holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Massachusetts.


/ Sonia Checchia, Principal Consultant /

Sonia Checchia is a seasoned communications executive and management consultant with 13+ years leading executive communications, internal communications, branding, messaging and positioning strategies for management consulting, government, higher education, and not-for-profit organizations. Sonia’s communications expertise is in the fields of human resources, diversity and inclusion, leadership development, and learning and development.

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Prior to joining Emily Bermes + Associates, Sonia was the Lead Associate at Booz Allen Hamilton, Senior Communications Consultant at LEA Consulting Group and the Creative Director at Creative Types Consulting.

Sonia has a masters degree in Sociolinguistics (Georgetown) and is an expert on the interplay between language and culture. She specializes in identifying misunderstandings that take place in corporate environments and creating customized solutions.

Sonia is fluent in Italian and Spanish and is energized by intercultural exchanges and the opportunity to leverage her foreign language skills.

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/ Alli Brook, Project Manager /

Alli has been supporting executives and small business owners across the world for more than 20 years. As an Online Business Manager, Alli brings organization, structure and a high touch approach to ensure forward movement on everything we do at Emily Bermes + Associates. With a thick e-roladex and highly developed intuitive skills, Alli creates ‘best of breed’ teams to catalyze each business and project.
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/ Erin Correa, M. Ed. /

Erin has spent the past 15 years in roles helping people grow and develop. She’s been the Executive Director of a leadership development company, authored leadership development curriculum, facilitated leadership development programs across the United States and led the executive development efforts of a Fortune 300 company.

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In her corporate financial services work Erin helped lead a company-wide culture transformation, built and implemented an employee engagement strategy and collaborated with company officers to define and develop critical capabilities needed to accelerate talent and drive strategic business priorities.

Erin is a trained Co-Active coach who is known as a relationship-builder, connector of both people and ideas and a catalyst for change. She believes a company's success begins and ends with its people. Erin loves what she does and is passionate about helping others feel the same. Erin has a Masters in Education and a Bachelors of Science in Kinesiology from James Madison University.

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/ Sonya Snellenberger, Project Manager | Consultant /

Sonya has a has a background in community development, project management, strengths-based coaching and as a faculty member in the Department of Communication at Purdue, Fort Wayne.

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Her role as a Project Manager allows Sonya to ensure success and timeliness of projects, the ability to troubleshoot and mitigate potential problems, and deliver outstanding results. In addition, Sonya’s love of details, efficiency, and structure ensures a high touch, seamless client experience.

Sonya holds a Bachelor’s degree in Interpersonal and Organizational Communication and a Master’s in Professional Communication from Purdue University, and is a Certified Gallup Strengths Coach. She was awarded the Alumni Business Leadership Award from Purdue and recognized as one of 20 Millennials Making a Difference in Northeast Indiana.


/ Russ Kolkman, Consultant /

Russ brings a unique blend of real world business experience in the benefits and HR consulting industry. He understands the challenges companies face every day to attract, retain and develop top talent and as a consultant has proven invaluable in their efforts to do so.

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He combines his executive experience with 25 years as a wilderness survival, firearms and tactics instructor teaching people how to fight and survive in some of the most hostile environments in the world. He has trained police forces, military units, and private sector citizens.

Russ combines these areas of expertise to teach, mentor, coach and lead high performance individuals and teams, pushing them to the outer limits of their comfort zones. Through experiential “trials by fire” that test the limits on high pressure decisioning, rapid assessment, team work and communication through complex simulations that reveal performance gaps and strengths from which individuals and teams emerge stronger, more resilient, sharper, more decisive and confident- all of which translate to the corporate arena. From chaos medicine, room clearing, firearms instruction, wilderness survival- his approach is intense, effective, and fun.

Russ has an Undergraduate degree from Indiana University in Business and Finance. In addition to owning an HR benefits consulting firm, he owns Mastiff Protection Services, which partners with Emily Bermes + Associates on experience based executive development and team effectiveness initiatives.

Emily is our choice for bringing out the best in our people; she represents the best in the coaching process.
— Mark Michael | President of Fort Wayne Metals