Rachel Wernicke, PhD, ACC

With 20+ years of experience as a psychologist and organizational leader, Rachel brings her expertise in workplace dynamics, leadership, mental health, and well-being to her work as a coach. As a lifelong learner committed to understanding people, contexts, and systems, Rachel enjoys partnering with her clients in their learning process.  

Coaching Approach and Style


Working with both leaders and individual contributors, Rachel brings empathy and curiosity to her coaching relationships. She challenges her clients to strengthen their self-awareness through reflection on their values, identities, mindset, and interpersonal patterns to discover their strengths and opportunities for growth. Rachel works with clients to develop greater flexibility, intentionality, and effectiveness in communication, decision-making, conflict management, and connection with others.

Relevant Experience


Rachel is a licensed clinical and consulting psychologist, certified coach, and Associate Dean/Chief Mental Health Officer in University Life at George Mason University. At Mason, she provides leadership oversight for student-focused health, mental health, and disability services and works on strategic initiatives related to creating a culture supportive of mental health and well-being.  

Rachel’s longstanding interest in leader development and organizational effectiveness began when she served as an Army officer early in her career. As a psychologist, Rachel has provided evidence-based cognitive-behavioral, psychodynamic, and mindfulness-based psychotherapy to help her clients be their most successful and thriving selves. She has held a number of leadership positions in mental health and higher education settings.

As a coach and facilitator, Rachel helps her clients find different, more advantageous, and mindful perspectivesto see themselves, their relationships, and their situations from new vantage points in ways that jumpstart their progress. Rachel provides talks within and outside of her organization on themes related to mental health and well-being in the workplace including in her TEDx talk, "Mental Health in the New Normal."



Rachel earned her doctorate and M.A. in psychology from American University and her B.A. in political science from the University of Pennsylvania. She completed her advanced clinical training and a postdoctoral fellowship in psychology at Massachusetts General Hospital/Harvard Medical School. Rachel received her coach training from Mason’s Leadership Coaching for Organizational Well-Being program.  



Rachel is an ACC-accredited coach through the International Coaching Federation (ICF). She is also certified in the Polarity Approach to Continuity and Transformation (PACTTM) through Polarity Partnerships and the Center for the Advancement of Well-Being.