International Coaching Federation (ICF) Professional Certified Coach (PCC)
Comprehensive ICF PCC Marker Assessor Training Certified
CoachRICE Leadership Coaching Certification – The Doerr Institute for New Leaders at Rice University

EQ-I 2.0 & EQ 360 Emotional Intelligence Assessment – Certified
DISC and Motivators Behavioral Assessments – Certified

Doctoral Student in Leadership Studies, Gonzaga University
M.A. in Organizational Leadership, Servant-Leadership Concentration, Gonzaga University
B.A. in History, Rice University

This is my story

I’m a leadership coach, a leadership studies scholar, a former Division-I men’s college basketball coach, and a lover of the mountains and the outdoors.

As a leadership studies scholar, my areas of focus are the emotional processes of well-functioning leadership relationships. I also write on a variety of themes connected to servant-leadership, often exploring the transforming power of servant-leadership and its application in the real world of the harms and negative impacts of leadership embedded in dysfunctional hierarchies and inappropriate power. My work has been published in The International Journal of Servant-Leadership (2022), The Palgrave Handbook of Servant Leadership (2023), and The Financial Manager magazine (2022).

I transitioned into leader development after a decade coaching D-I men’s college basketball, serving as an Assistant Coach at Rice University and Cornell University. During my time at Cornell University, the program achieved their most successful season in eight years.

And no matter the time of year, you’re likely to find me in the mountains – hiking, backpacking, and mountaineering in the summers, and skiing in the winters. The next adventure planned is a thru-hike of the Teton Crest Trail.

I’ve lived in five different states across the country, and currently reside in Spokane, WA.

Leaders who:
  • Find themselves dealing with challenges and opportunities more difficult or complex than anything they’ve known or encountered before.
  • Notice their previous ways of leading and working aren’t quite having the same impact they used to, or are producing negative impacts.
  • Want to deepen how they think about leadership and desire to serve others in more responsible ways.
  • Seek to intentionally develop a personal leadership philosophy and conceptualization.

My Coaching Approach

Hopefully, these qualities provide a bit of a snapshot as to the experience of partnering together. My work with others is a co-creative partnership that provides the time, space, and opportunity for you to learn about yourself, so you can serve others in more life-giving ways and act with greater impact. It speaks to an emotional and relational focus found at the heart of leadership, in the context of challenging environments that often call on hardiness and resilience capacity to support flourishing relationships and teams.

I’m looking forward to supporting you in moving toward your leader development goals and partnering together for a coaching engagement!

What my clients say

“Adam has been a powerful resource for both my managers and educators, leading us in group settings as well as through one-on-one connections. He has such a cool way of making others feel seen and heard, allowing his clients to feel safe, building trust quickly, and welcoming in vulnerability. Through Adam’s coaching my team has created a vision for who we want to be as a collective and as individuals. We have clarified our purpose, what we are committed to, and how we define success. Adam has brought in a fresh approach with new perspectives and tools, enabling my team to further lean into their leadership.” – Heidi Keats, Store Manager, lululemon

“I didn’t know what to expect going into my sessions with Adam. This was the first time I ever had “leadership coaching”. My leadership skills were always taught to me by experiences and failures of what not to do. I went into my sessions open and willing to take constructive criticism to make me a better leader and person. To my surprise the sessions were not a ‘do better’ or ‘you need to do this to become a leader’. Adam helped me answer questions and reflect on things I had never thought about. Adam helped bring different qualities out of me that will not only help me professionally but in my life at home. I would highly recommend Adam Gierlach to anyone looking to improve their leadership and their self.” – Cameron, Senior Account Executive, Head High School Basketball Coach

“Connecting with Adam as a leadership coach has been an amazing experience for me. While skeptical at first at how much it could help me, I quickly began to take steps in taking control of my leadership, well-being, and direction in life through my conversations with Adam. The most helpful part about the sessions is that he provides guidance but doesn’t think for you or tell you what to do. Instead, he challenges you to navigate through your own problems so that you take ownership of your decisions and as a result, become better prepared in the long-term. I encourage anyone who is looking to better themselves to give coaching with Adam a try with an open mind and they won’t be disappointed!” – Celio, Division-I College Basketball Player

“Adam has provided me with tremendous support and guidance as a young new leader operating in a challenging environment. He has pushed me to think more strategically about my organization, where to invest my time and energy, and think critically about how I connect with my staff and peers. I come away from our discussions refreshed, energized, and ready to take on new challenges with a positive mindset.” – Lisa, Director of Facilities, Student and Campus Life, Cornell University

“Adam has been a critical and valued resource for me as I experience professional transitions. He’s opened my eyes to new perspectives and ways of thinking about how I best harness my leadership and potential.” – Dan, Reporter, KSHB 41 News