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Marina Illich Ph.D


Professional and leadership experience

Marina is an executive coach, facilitator and leadership consultant with over a decade of experience working in high-tech, biotech, financial services and professional services. Based in Silicon Valley, Marina supports executives across the globe to deliver high-impact and transformative results in a way that prioritizes long-term, personal well-being. She coaches from the perspective that leaders do their best work when they align to the ‘north star’ of their personal vision and values and stay ‘on purpose’ in everything they do. To enable this, Marina supports leaders to combine the power of their acumen and vision with honed emotional intelligence and inspiring presence to unlock their full leadership capacity.

Education and Professional Training

Marina certified as an integral coach through New Ventures West in 2010 and holds a PCC credential from the ICF. She holds a Ph.D. from Columbia University in New York City and was a Visiting Scholar at the University of Oxford in Oxford, England. Prior to working in leadership development, she was a professor of Buddhism teaching at New York University, Columbia University and Barnard College. She spent five years in Asia researching how contemporary Buddhist leaders leverage mindfulness and emotional intelligence to model leadership excellence and inspire social change.

Fields of Interest

In addition to working 1:1 with executives, Marina provides group coaching for executive and leadership teams. She supports teams to align to a clear vision, design powerful operating agreements and leverage communication skills that optimize mutual understanding, collaboration and agility. As part of this process, Marina provides leaders with tools  to identify their own and each other’s intrinsic motivators, signature strengths and communication styles so that teams can more effectively leverage their collective intelligence.

Marina is also a passionate “coach of coaches”. She leads the year-long Professional Coaching Course at New Ventures West where she supports individuals from diverse professional backgrounds to develop and certify as integral coaches. She also loves  working 1:1 with certified coaches to support their ongoing professional growth and personal development.

Personal Details

Marina lives with her husband in Palo Alto, California. She is an avid swimmer, loves hiking and enjoys a regular meditation practice. She also loves to travel and has a sweet spot for Italy and Dalmatia. 

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