About Joan

Loud and loving discussions at the dinner table infused me with the values of social justice at a very young age – a passion that has carried me into the fields of human development, psychology, coaching and more recently, restorative practices. I hail from a family of activists, and I was bred for social work.

I started my career as a school counselor, and when I left to open a private therapy practice for adolescents, I quickly yearned for more collaboration with my clients. I wanted to partner with them, rather than watch from the sidelines. Coach training was the obvious next step for me. Now, I find myself circling back to schools with a mission to create safe and inclusive spaces for courageous conversations.

As an introvert, it wasn’t always easy growing up in a boisterous household. Along with my “peopley” pursuits, I’ve always needed down time to re-charge my battery. Ever since I figured that out, I’ve felt a sense of freedom. No more wishing I was more outspoken and social. No more making excuses for choosing a day at the beach or a good book over a “fabulous event”. I’m good with it. So good, that I want everyone to feel the freedom that comes with knowing their worthiness has nothing to do with the opinions and validations from society, co-workers, family or friends. It’s an inside job, and has everything to do with believing you are good enough: smart enough, kind enough, beautiful enough, and loveable enough.

Joan combines her knowledge of human emotions and relationships with a sense of humor, and great insight.LH, Certified Professional Coach

Equity is also a core value of mine, as I’ve served on boards and volunteered for a variety of educational and social justice non-profits. When I’m not crusading for the shame-free revolution, I am an animal and nature lover, traveler and gardener. I live with my husband, dog, chickens and cats. I’m the mother of two adult children and the grandmother of an adorable 2 yr. old whom I love to spoil rotten.

Personal truths

Life is messy.

The mess is what makes us human. The harder we hustle to sweep it under the rug, the more likely it will come back to bite us in the butt.


At the heart of perfectionism is fear.

We live in fear of being seen as flawed and therefore unlovable.  We strive for unattainable perfection to protect ourselves from the perceived judgement of others.

Shame kills creativity.

Shame has the power to stifle creativity, deter innovation, and turn us off from the love of learning. Silence is shame’s superpower. Telling our stories is the antidote.


Vulnerability breeds connection.

When we practice vulnerability we allow ourselves be seen. We also give others permission to do the same.

Humor is essential.

Laughter is like oxygen for the soul, especially when it’s at our own expense.


The facts

Certified Daring Way™ Facilitator-Consultant
THE DARING WAY™ – HOUSTON, TX

Certified Professional Co-Active Coach
THE COACHES TRAINING INSTITUTE – SAN RAFAEL, CA

Masters in Counseling Psychology
LESLEY UNIVERSITY – CAMBRIDGE, MA

Bachelor of Arts
HAMPSHIRE COLLEGE – AMHERST, MA

Vice Chair, Board of Directors (2014 – 2016)
LIGHTHOUSE HOLYOKE – HOLYOKE, MA

Volunteer Case Coordinator & Circle Keeper
COMMUNITIES FOR RESTORATIVE JUSTICE – CONCORD, MA

Trustee (2005-2012)
HAMPSHIRE COLLEGE – AMHERST, MA

Professional Certified Coach (PCC)
INTERNATIONAL COACHES FEDERATION

ICF Mentor Coach

Non Violent Communication training (NVC)

Mindful Self Compassion Training
Christopher Germer, PhD & Kristin Neff, PhD

Basic Restorative Practices & Facilitating Restorative Conferences – training
INTERNATIONAL INSTITUTE OF RESTORATIVE PRACTICES