Vice President, Leader of BlessingWhite
Scott leads BlessingWhite, a division of GP Strategies. Scott has over 25 years of experience in the fields of organizational culture, leadership development, talent development, and corporate consulting. He is a trusted advisor to senior level clients as an executive coach and consultant to drive effective and successful business strategies. He is also a thought leader in personal and professional development, employee engagement, and talent management.
Prior to joining BlessingWhite, Scott held various roles in the learning and development functions at the Prudential Insurance Company and Atlantic Mutual Companies. He has a Master of Arts degree in adult education and training from Montclair State University. Scott also holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Marketing from Rutgers University.
Scott has been a featured speaker on leadership development and coaching at the Chief Learning Officers Forum, ATD, NJ Organizational Development (NJOD), SHRM, Life Sciences Trainers & Educators Network, and others.
Vice President, GP Strategies Corporation
Matt Varava is the employee engagement practice leader on our employee engagement team at BlessingWhite. He has over 26 years of combined CFO, Enterprise Performance Management and global management consulting experience. Matt and his leadership development team work with senior leadership teams to develop, implement and sustain employee engagement strategies to drive financial performance. The senior leadership team consults on the deployment and effectiveness of engagement surveys as part of an integrated approach to building a culture of engagement. Matt is actively involved in the analysis and presentation of client engagement results while overseeing the strategic direction of the practice.
Under his leadership, the employee engagement team has evolved into a full service provider of engagement services including survey deployment, communications, analytics and “moving the needle” strategies utilizing BlessingWhite’s world class content and consulting capabilities.
His passion for employee engagement goes back over 20 years ago while consulting at PricewaterhouseCoopers. As a senior consultant, Matt led Enterprise Performance Management initiatives at Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Harris Communications, Air Products, HJ Heinz and Ethyl Corporation.
He holds undergraduate degrees in Economics and Accounting from the University of Pennsylvania and Rowan University and received his MBA in Finance from Philadelphia University.
From 1999 through 2012, Matt was responsible for the firms Accounting, Finance, Human Resource and IT functions. In 2001, Matt led the employee buyout of BlessingWhite from Wolters Kluwer N.V and has served on the Board of Directors through Sept 2012 when the firm was acquired by GP Strategies.
Managing Director, East and Midwest Regions
Joan oversees the East and Midwestern US operations for our leadership development teams. She works with clients of all sizes to develop values-driven corporate cultures, inspiring leaders, and employees who are dedicated to not only their career growth but also to the success of their employer.
Her experience includes working with senior leadership development teams and wider employee populations to implement and sustain high performance cultures via organizational values, leadership, and employee engagement/development initiatives.
Before joining BlessingWhite’s leadership development and employee engagement team, Joan built a successful career in working with hundreds of organizations across the country. Currently, Joan serves on the boards of three non-profit organizations dedicated to education and development.
Managing Director, West Region
Kathy oversees the West Coast US operations for our leadership development teams. In this role, Kathy aims to help more organizations develop the capabilities and potential of all of their employees and develop the leaders at all levels to ensure their potential is unleashed.
She brings a wealth of experience in executive and senior-level roles in Human Resources, Consulting, and Finance. Kathy has worked across a number of industries with companies varying in size and location.
Kathy’s passions include helping companies to achieve excellent results by unleashing the potential of every employee. She has helped many companies implement the initiatives that earned them recognition on various ‘best places to work’ lists and that have resulted in higher employee engagement within the organization. While transforming HR functions from transactional to value-creating, she built many talent management programs that help organizations and their employees to thrive. As an early pioneer in the use of metrics and analytics in the HR field, Kathy championed accountability in the HR function and helped to oversee and edit a manual on these subjects published by Boston College.
Kathy was an early, and is a continual, champion of diversity, gender, work/life integration, and wellness initiatives. She authored a how-to book about flexible work options that helped a leading telecommunications company and others to retain top talent, especially employees facing family and other work/life challenges.
Director, Implementation Services & Project Management
Jennifer manages the Implementation Services and Project Management team at BlessingWhite.
With over 23 years’ experience in instructional design, client services, project management, development of custom learning solutions, as well as strategic performance solution implementations, Jennifer brings deep experience to our leadership development team.
Jennifer’s focus is on leading carefully planned and flawlessly implemented solutions for clients. Her responsibilities include contract management, development and execution; assignment and oversight of all project management; financial performance and forecasting; and risk management.
Prior to joining BlessingWhite, Jennifer worked as a project manager, curriculum development manager, training and learning solutions manager, and as an instructional designer specializing in e-learning and blended learning solutions. Her experience is both in external consulting and internal training leadership, most notably 10+ years with a large communications company. Jennifer has a Master of Science in Applied Behavioral Science and Human Resource Development from The Johns Hopkins University and a Master’s Certificate in Project Management from the Project Management Institute at George Washington University.
Managing Director, Consulting Services
Cate manages the consulting group and oversees product development for BlessingWhite’s leadership and employee engagement team. She is passionate about partnering with organizations to reinvent leadership and the meaning of work, and does so through consulting and original design. She is a co-designer/developer of core BlessingWhite solutions such as Why Should Anyone Be Led by You? , Helping Others Succeed and Influencing Across the Matrix.
Cate has developed and implemented highly customized solutions and wide-scale initiatives for clients in a variety of industries. She also evaluates organizational cultures through qualitative (focus groups, interviews) and quantitative (surveys) assessment, analyzing data, and preparing and presenting recommendations to senior leaders. Her passion is helping companies create environments for people to do their best work every day.
Prior to joining BlessingWhite’s leadership development team, Cate started-up and ran a company which provided professional editorial and marketing communications services. Cate began her career as an environmental engineer and has held leadership positions at Johnson Matthey and Groundwater Technology (a division of Fluor Daniel).
Cate earned a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Columbia University.
Director, Strategy and Planning
Leah leads Strategy and Planning for BlessingWhite focusing on bringing new products to market and enhancing the participant experience. She works with clients to understand their leadership and engagement challenges and consults with them on the creative solutions.
Prior to joining BlessingWhite, Leah had her own practice in executive coaching and consulting. She is a certified professional coach through an ICF accredited organization and is Myers-Brigg practitioner. Leah’s focus as a coach is on helping individuals get unstuck from negative beliefs and see the possibilities that exist for personal growth.
Leah has over seventeen years of experience in marketing, strategy, and product development in a corporate environment. She has also served as an adjunct faculty member in the fields of psychology and organizational psychology.
She has a Master’s of Arts degree in Organizational Psychology from Columbia University and a Bachelor or Arts in English and Sociology from Boston College where she graduated summa cum laude.
Director of Technology
Mike Shoenfelt is the Director of Technology for BlessingWhite. He leads a team of skilled technical professionals and is responsible for developing creative, effective technology solutions for the online components of BlessingWhite’s blended learning programs. Mike and his technology development team have developed online content and applications for leading technology, food & beverages, and government organizations. Mike designed and led the development of a generic survey creator which hosts BlessingWhite’s research and custom surveys. To date the system has run over hundreds of surveys with over one million respondents.
Prior to joining BlessingWhite, Mike was a Senior Consultant leading, designing and developing web-based systems. Mike has an extensive background developing multi-tiered web, mobile and windows based applications, in a wide array of industries.
Mike is a graduate of Stockton University with a degree in Information Systems and Computer Sciences. With the ever-growing role technology plays in our business, Mike’s 20+ years of information technology experience significantly contributes to BlessingWhite’s success.