Ellen also holds an MBA in marketing from New York University; an MA in physical education from Adelphi University in Garden City, N.Y.; and a PhD in educational psychology from the University of Virginia’s Curry School of Education, with a focus on sport psychology. In 1998, she founded PowerPlay NYC, a nonprofit organization dedicated to advancing the lives of girls through sports and life-skills training. The organization now serves more than 2,000 girls annually from low-income backgrounds and is funded in part by a million-dollar lead grant from the New York City Council. Ellen served as volunteer executive director until 2006, and now is a member of PowerPlay NYC’s board of directors. Her career also includes professional positions with Girl Scouts of the USA (1996–2000), and the Sports and Arts in Schools Foundation in Woodside, N.Y., (2004–2006), where she was responsible for programming, budgeting, reporting and assessment of a million-dollar portfolio of after-school programs serving 13,000 students at more than 100 schools.
Ellen has taught undergraduate and graduate courses in developmental psychology, adolescent development, lifespan development and educational psychology at the University of Virginia. As program leader for the Curry School’s Master of Education program, she also spearheaded recruitment and marketing efforts, advised and mentored students, and coordinated internships and job placements.
In her own life and in coaching, Ellen focuses on process over outcome. She incorporates elements of sport psychology, positive psychology, mindfulness, and meditation to help players enjoy and improve performance, while gaining insights and awareness about themselves. Her approach is holistic, focusing on the whole person, to integrate play, learning and growth—on the court and off. It’s the “aha” moments that bring her the greatest satisfaction: when she sees students or clients unlock their super powers to become their “super selves.”