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About Cate

Cate Goethals (PCC, CHIC) coaches top executives and aspiring board directors to confidently embody their leadership value, transition to bigger or more satisfying roles, and pursue their first board seats. An expert in executive leadership and boardroom trends, she has been coaching leaders for more than three decades. Each client relationship is completely personalized and structured to that individual’s unique goals. 

Known for her nurturing yet challenging approach, Cate asks the precise questions that help leaders discover the answers hidden within. A proponent of authentic leadership, Cate guides executives to deeper meaning and answers – resulting in an actionable, practical path forward, regardless of their goal. One client describes Cate as “having changed the trajectory of my career. . . she holds me accountable and has helped me realize my full value and potential.”  Another said Cate brings “just the right combination of love and push.”

Cate is also a globally recognized expert in boardroom trends, diversity, and strategies for achieving first board seats. As a long-time business professor at University of Washington, her programs include the Foster Women Board Director Development Program, MBA “Women at the Top,” (one of the Forbes “10 Most Innovative” MBA courses), and Women in Leadership. She serves as an executive coach for Athena Alliance, an Executive Education as a Service platform for top women leaders. She is co-founder of Better Boards Initiative (BBI), which serves to champion diversity in the boardroom and help new diverse directors contribute from day one. Cate frequently speaks on issues related to leadership development and the benefits of boardroom diversity. 


A holder of two passports, Cate’s work has taken her around the world. She has worked with leaders on three continents and run programs in the UK and India and across the US. Her clients span every industry and function.  


Cate Goethals, PCC, CHIC

“The world would be a much better place if more women and diverse leaders were in charge…and if our organizations evolved to become truly inclusive.  I’m passionate about supporting the individuals who can make a difference.”

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