Beth Offenbacker, PhD
Founder and Principal
Executive, Leadership, and Green Career Coach
Strategic Planning Facilitator & Trainer
Advisor on Optimized Stakeholder Engagement Strategies
Dr. Offenbacker’s expertise, experience and passion for people, the planet and performance is what distinguishes her and sets her apart as an executive, executive coach, and consultant who specializes in elevating results and impact for individual talent and organizations in the Green Industry. As the recipient of more than 30 awards, honors, and fellowships throughout her esteemed career, she is highly regarded as the “go to” authority and an extraordinary influencer in her field.
She works with technical and scientifically-focused individuals and organizations to translate their expertise for greater reach and impact. She coaches green leaders, facilitates strategic planning sessions, designs and leads training programs, and advises executives on stakeholder engagement strategy. Her areas of specialization include:
Individuals: Career Strategy/Management, Effective Interviewing, Design Thinking, Mindfulness, Challenging Discussions, Presentation Coaching, Performance Feedback
Organizations: Strategic Planning, Mentoring Program Design/Coaching; Education and Training; Stakeholder Engagement Advising on Planning, Techniques, & Process Management
During her tenure at Waterford, Dr. Offenbacker has been consistently recognized for her strategic and creative vision in guiding the firm’s work with its diverse range of clients, and she is the recipient of numerous industry and professional awards. She has corporate, nonprofit, and public agency experience, and her expansive portfolio includes local, state, regional, national, and international projects.
Dr. Offenbacker co-designed and leads the Green Career Workshops for the global nonprofit Leaders in Energy, a 4,500+ member organization of clean energy and sustainability professionals in the U.S. and more than 100 countries. She also serves as Director of Training & Development for Leaders in Energy. To date, more than 175 people have participated in the popular LE Green Career Workshops. In addition to her work with LE, Dr. Offenbacker uses her Green Career Map™ in providing one-on-one and small group coaching to individuals seeking to enter or move up in the green industry.
Dr. Offenbacker has more than 20 years’ experience working with and advising private firms, public agencies, and nonprofits/NGOs on a broad variety of stakeholder processes, projects, and issues. Her work includes projects in the areas of stormwater management, watershed planning, sewers, parks and natural resource management, environmental issues, civil design, public transit (bus, rail), transportation (bridges, roads), tunnels, pedestrian/biker pathways, and land use planning.
In addition, she has 10+ years of instructional experience working with junior and senior leaders, and more than 7 years of higher education leadership and administration experience.
Prior Experience, Education, and Professional Service
Prior to establishing Waterford in 1996, Dr. Offenbacker's work experience included positions with the federal sector, the electric power industry, a professional trade association, and a marketing firm. She served as Associate Director for Social Media and Engagement with the Virginia Tech School of Public and International Affairs in Old Town Alexandria from 2012-2015.
Dr. Offenbacker designed and delivered classroom instruction as an adjunct faculty member with the Virginia Tech School of Public and International Affairs and the American University School of Communications, and she also served as Chief Learning Officer with the online training provider, PublicDecisions. She has designed and led workshops, sessions, and training seminars for community nonprofits, professional conferences, and stakeholder groups, from small groups to sessions with more than 100 participants. Dr. Offenbacker is fluent in delivering classes and programs via live streaming and in blended formats (a combination of face-to-face, asynchronous tools such as Canvas, and/or live streaming as well as webinars).
She earned a bachelor's degree in communications at the State University of New York at Brockport and a master's degree in public communications at American University. A graduate of Virginia Tech’s Center for Public Administration and Policy, Dr. Offenbacker's doctoral dissertation focused on the practice of public participation in 12 countries (Australia, Brazil, Cambodia, Canada, China, Cote d'Ivoire, Mexico, New Zealand, Scotland, South Africa, Sweden, and the United States). Her coaching training is from the Co-Active Training Institute, and she holds a number of certifications in emotional intelligence tools.
Dr. Offenbacker is past chair of the American Planning Association's International Division and a founding member of the World Town Planning Day Online Conference. She participates in several "green" organizations or initiatives, including the Arlington Chamber of Commerce and its Sustainability Committee, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the Citizen Science Association and the European Citizen Science Association, Leaders in Energy, and the Women's Council on Energy and the Environment, among others. She is also an active Toastmaster and a frequent speaker at professional development meetings and nonprofit workshops.
Dr. Offenbacker follows trends and practices in engagement through the International Association for Public Participation (Lifetime Member), and through scholarly and practitioner journals and conferences. She is an active volunteer with the Tree Stewards of Arlington and Alexandria and she resides in South Arlington, Virginia.
Paul J. Coelus
Vice President & CFO
Paul J. Coelus is Waterford's Vice President and Chief Financial Officer. He joined the corporation in 2001. As CFO, Paul is responsible for the efficient management and fiscal responsibility of the corporation. He oversees Waterford's compliance with its contractual obligations and as general counsel, he is responsible for the corporation's legal affairs.
A talented and creative individual, Paul serves as day-to-day project manager for Waterford’s client activities and as such works closely with Beth Offenbacker. He is particularly skilled at finding innovative and cost-effective solutions that respond to client needs. His creative flair and artistic abilities have enhanced numerous Waterford client projects.
Clients tell us they appreciate Paul’s thoughtful approach to client work and the thorough nature of his project management skills. Prior to joining Waterford, Paul served in the United States Air Force as a systems acquisition program manager and as a judge advocate ("JAG"). In 2005, Paul was certified as a Public Meeting Facilitator by the National Charrette Institute.
Paul is a graduate of Cornell University (B.S., microbiology) and Boston University (J.D.). He has also done graduate work in intellectual property law, environmental science, and biotechnology, and has instructed in the field of criminal justice. His bar memberships include the U.S. Supreme Court, the Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces, the Court of Federal Claims, and the Virginia Supreme Court. Paul formerly served on the board of the Cornell Club of Washington. He resides in Arlington, Virginia.
Waterford works with a network of associates who provide specialized knowledge and experience based on the needs of your particular project.
These may include but are not limited to, individuals with complementary expertise and experience in human resources, change management, stakeholder engagement, or talent development, or other related focus areas. Where possible, we seek to work with individuals with past experience in your particular field.