Chapter Events Blog Posts

The ICF Greater Austin Charter Chapter holds its monthly meetings on the last Tuesday of every month at Riverbend Church. Each month we bring up different topics related to the world of coaching. CCEU’s are often up for grabs. There are also workshops, webinars, summer and winter socials, and other chapter led events to support our community.

  • March 11, 2019 10:43 AM | Deanna Couras Goodson

    Jodi Harris kicked off our new webinar series with a wonderful presentation on how to coach from anywhere by doing your own work. During the course of the hour-long webinar, Jodi, who is currently living in Tokyo while being a proud ICF Greater Austin Charter Chapter member, discussed seven questions that coaches can apply to their lives regardless of where they live. She shared experiences she’s had with these questions and gave the attendees some great food for thought.

    A mindfulness teacher and former social worker, Jodi offered great insight into what it’s like to live an expat life and be a true global citizen. As the world changes, so too will the need for coaches. Many of us do have clients in different time zones and in different parts of the world. Sometimes, we wonder how to make it work. Jodi provided information on some tools like a scheduler that puts your schedule into the Time Zone of your client. Making scheduling easier helps both the coach and the client. Automation can be very helpful when coaching globally.

    Jodi has lived in several different countries. She mentioned that it’s important to be culturally sensitive but still remember your objectives. For example, when she was living in the Dominican Republic counseling relief workers, she discovered that many of them were afraid to approach their clients because of perceived cultural barriers. “The local client wouldn’t do it that way,” was a common misconception and Jodi helped her clients learn to relate better to the people they helped.

    One must remember that the language of assistance and connection is universal. People want to be connected no matter where they’re from and they need help despite their ‘cultural differences’. Jodi also shared a story of how when she’s networking in Japan, she reacts differently to a person from the United States opposed to a European and so on. She’s not saying that you should adapt to other cultures but rather be open and aware that there are differences and being sensitive to the proclivities of others is an important thing to master.

    It requires self-awareness to be open culturally and empathy to be aware of the needs of others. As coaches by doing our own work, we grow in our effectiveness to serve our clients. Jodi has a unique experience because she and her family move around regularly. Her children are global citizens and the experience is normal for them, instead of unique. Global citizenry can create great adaptability and resilience in not just children but also adults.

    To that end, Jodi herself has written two books, one is The Expat Activity Book. The other is geared towards children. It’s called Kids on the Move. She also referred to the work of Jon Kabat-Zinn, who created MBSR (Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction) and Jamie Holmes, the author of Nonsense: The Power of Not-Knowing.

    Everyone had interesting and relevant questions to ask of Jodi. She proved to be a great introductory speaker for this webinar series. Next up for us is Diane Winn. She will present “Creating a Thriving Business” on Wednesday, April 3, 2019.

    Thanks to all the attendees and to Jodi for her wonderful presentation. We are grateful to have such a great membership community and are proud of all the offerings we will be bringing to you in 2019 and beyond.

  • March 08, 2019 10:38 AM | Deanna Couras Goodson

    The ICF Greater Austin Charter Chapter will begin a new “chapter” in April 2019. Yes, we will be starting a Virtual Book Club. Inspired by Edna Harris, the Virtual Book Club will be open to all ICF Austin members and affiliates for free.

    Beginning on the 2nd and 4th Thursdays of the month - the first meeting will be on April 11, 2019 - Virtual Book Club will be an engaging and interesting discussion-based conversation. Come prepared to share.

    We will be meeting from 6:30 pm - 7:30 pm CST for those of you who are interested. The event will show up in our calendar soon. The first book was chosen from the list of our January Book Swap offerings. It’s The Untethered Soul by Michael Singer. Please read Part 1: Awakening Consciousness in time for the first event if you’re planning on attending. We will continue with the other four parts over subsequent weeks with the last week in the 6-week cycle ending with a full-blown wrap up of this excellent work. A vote on which book will be next in our series will occur during the third session.

    Please purchase a copy of the book in any format that you wish be it audiobook, ebook, hardcover or paperback. The Zoom link for the series will be sent in your confirmation email as well as in email reminders to registrants. We hope you’ll join us and ask that you keep the Zoom link information confidential.

    (Note: You must register for at least 5 of the 6 sessions during which the book will be discussed. You may register for them at the same time. Our calendar will have all the details up on it within the next two weeks.)

    Questions on The ICF Greater Austin Charter Chapter Virtual Book Club should be sent to Deanna Couras Goodson, the Director-at-Large.

  • March 04, 2019 6:53 AM | Deanna Couras Goodson

    On Tuesday, February 26, 2019, the Greater Austin Charter Chapter held its monthly meeting. Our meeting space was transformed into Celebration Land, a mystical, wonderful location of connection, fun, and conversation. The decorations were put together by the board. Treasurer Dawn Mayer helped set the room up expertly.

    Communications DIrector Laura DiTomasso got to work putting together our new name tags, which our President Dr. Ryan Schoenbeck carefully and mindfully created. Deanna Goodson, our Director-at-Large, had put together much of the documentation and colorful pieces of paper that adorned the room and told our membership about all the different activities, events and goals the board has planned for them in the coming year inspired by member input.

    Program DIrector Stefania RIgo outdid herself in purchasing drinks, goodies and all sorts of yummy items for people to enjoy. She was also the driving force behind making sure that the evening’s activities moved along smoothly and comfortably. Stefania also created stunning certificates for members to receive special accolades based on their history of chapter participation which our president researched and presented on slides.

    Ryan kicked off the festivities with a toast and presented the layout of Celebration Land. This was followed by a networking activity in which everyone got together in pairs to discuss a fun fact about themselves. People wrote fun facts on stickers they placed on their ‘champagne’ glasses. Our Membership DIrector Elly Van Laar was instrumental in marking the time so that everyone else could relax and just enjoy each other’s company.

    At that point, the first of three awards ceremonies began. Ann Fry was recognized for being the first ICF global member in our chapter. Sherry Lowry was recognized for being the first ICF credentialed member in our chapter, and Patricia Selmo was recognized for being the first ICF Greater Austin member in our current database. To begin the next activity, stations had been set up for different directions in our fine city so that coaches could connect and create their own little networks in their own neighborhoods.

    Ryan and Stefania then gathered everyone together for the second of three awards ceremonies. Former President Kelley Russell-DuVarney was celebrated for attending the most chapter events and the most socials. Deanna Goodson attended the most Coaching Conversations and VIrtual Happy Hours. For more details on chapter events, please visit our calendar.

    Who says ICF coaches can’t enjoy the Core Competencies? Well, no one. As the evening progressed, folks connected and shared which of the 11 Core Competencies that they picked out of a fabulous hat provided for the occasion by Marisa Goodson, our Director-at-Large’s daughter. They shared what their Core Competency means to them as well as how they currently use it in their coaching and how they will use it in the future. Everyone made some great awarenesses and created incredible insights into these, the standards of our profession.

    Stefania rallied the troops together to honor former President Katherine Torrini for all her help in making us a non-profit. Katherine recognized the support of Mary Dunn, Joe Brattain and many others. Edna Harris was also honored for attending the most workshops.

    Next, everyone circled up and talked about their niches. There were leadership coaches, health and wellness coaches, business coaches, relationship coaches and more. It was great to connect as a group and have the opportunity to discuss how everyone shows up for their clients.

    In the final appreciation interlude of the event, Stefania and Ryan celebrated past presidents and board members. Some of our former board members shared what ICF Austin used to be like and everyone enjoyed this wonderful look at our chapter’s amazing past while marveling at how far we’ve come and have yet to go in 2019 and beyond.

    As the event came to a close, Elly led us in sharing some awarenesses that came up for us during the celebration. Many people mentioned that connection was key, which is a beautiful thing. Hopefully, Celebration Land will remain in the hearts and minds of our members for a long time to come. We look forward to seeing you at our next monthly chapter event. Sherry Lowry will be speaking on the Core Competencies. SIgn up for the event today using this link.

  • February 18, 2019 2:39 PM | Deanna Couras Goodson

    Do you want to Speak Your Path to Cash? As a coach, we know you want to make an impact and maybe start a movement. With Mark and Shannon, you can. They are powerhouse speakers. They didn’t come to the industry easily. They both had to claw their way up. Their stories are inspirational and amazing and we are so grateful that they shared them with us.

    Our lovely Program Director, Stefania Rigo, has been working with them. As a result, her business has taken off. She wanted to share Mark and Shannon with us. On Tuesday, February 12th, she did and we are so thankful to her.

    From listening to them talk, it’s obvious that Mark and Shannon are high-energy people who love what they do. They know how to make a Big Impact. They’re just infectious and funny and effervescent. They taught us how to make a movement and make an impact with our lives and businesses. They were also very entertaining. They do not lack personality. Not at all.

    Their system is not rocket science. For those of us lucky enough to attend the event, we can say that it was amazing. In speaking your path to cash, you need to do a few simple tasks. Speaking to small audiences is the way to go. You need to understand that your message is important and people want to hear it. As a coach, you want to make an impact. With Mark and Shannon’s methodology, you can make a whole movement and gain a tribe for yourself – and a thriving business.

    The ICF Austin Greater Charter Chapter is attempting to bring you more events where you can learn about how to run your coaching business. This is just the first of many such planned. Mark and Shannon are well worth the time it takes to attend their monthly meetup event.  Details can be found here at:

    We encourage you to check out Mark and Shannon online. They are such dynamic speakers who have created a tribe that’s earned over $20 million dollars. They get results. If you want to improve your reach and impact as a coach, Speak Your Path to Cash is a great way to get started.

    For more information, check out their website at:

    We are grateful to Mark and Shannon for being so giving and so caring with the ICF Austin. We look forward to more events like this and are grateful to our board for working hard to help make ICF Austin one of the premier ICF chapters in the world.

  • February 01, 2019 9:43 AM | Deanna Couras Goodson

    On Tuesday, January 29, 2019, The ICF Greater Austin Charter Chapter convened at River Bend Church for its 4th Annual Book Swap. The event is a highlight for many. Our coaches, affiliates and guests get together to discuss books that have meaning to them and there’s some pleasant banter and a whole lot of fun involved.

    The Golden Elephant Exchange got off to a quick start with the help of our Program Director, Stefania Rigo. She laid out the rules of engagement for everyone. The person who picks first also gets the last pick. People who go after can steal books that were given before them. A book cannot be stolen more than three times. Laura Di Tomasso, our Communications Director, reminded everyone that when their book got chosen, they needed to stand up and talk a bit about why the book was meaningful to them.

    Then, we got underway. Laura was also the lucky lady to be first to pick. She got a lovely book from Anna Westbrook entitled Grit, the Power of Passion and Perseverance. Anna shared her story of how as a first-time composer and writer she got her musical produced. Sherry Lowry and Lisa Walker, who helped her through the process, sat on either side of her and shared their thoughts on Anna’s coachability and willingness to do whatever it took to succeed. It was a wonderful story of how passion and perseverance can lead you to achieve great things.

    Everyone brought such lovely books that meant a great deal to them. Our President, Ryan Schoenbeck, Ph.D., PCC, presented guest Courtney Stokes with Organizational Culture and Leadership by Edgar Schein. Courtney, an aspiring coach, who we hope to see at more ICF Austin events, was the big ‘winner’ of the night. People kept stealing her books and she finally wound up with Edna Harris’ book, Coach by multiple authors. It’s a look at the coaching profession from people who do it. Isn’t it ironic how the universe works? We all agreed Courtney wound up with the book that was meant for her.

    Both Carolyn Scarborough and Stefania Rigo gifted The War of Art by Stephen Pressfield. Carolyn mentioned how resistance can show up for us in life and art, especially as coaches who are entrepreneurs and very often also creatives. Stefania discussed how working with Carolyn and the book helped her overcome some resistance in her practice. It was gratifying to hear the genuineness in the room. Everyone was so open-hearted and ready to share their stories with each other.

    Perhaps the most poignant moment of the evening was courtesy of Lisa Walker who gifted the book Creating We by Judith E. Glaser. She told us how Ms. Glaser was a mentor of hers and how difficult it was to be at her memorial service last November. The book, as you can imagine, got stolen multiple times. It seemed that everyone wanted it. What a wonderful testament to Ms. Glaser’s work.

    Diane Winn and her fantastic husband, Thomas Searcy, were in town. They currently live in Indiana, but Diane is still an active member of ICF Austin. Diane gifted the book Intuitive Living while Thomas handed off Leadership and Self-Deception. It was great to see both Diane and Thomas.

    All in all it was a wonderful night with a group of caring, kind people who shared some interesting and profound stories. We are truly overjoyed at the ICF Greater Austin Charter Chapter to have such thoughtful, intelligent and insightful members, affiliates and guests.

    For a full list of books given at the 2019 Annual Book Swap, visit this link.  For pictures of the books featured in this article, see below.

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