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Meet The BlogSquad

The art of establishing strong rapport and influence with others involves being masterfully connected with one’s inner world, values, and personal vision for the future.  Today’s most successful leaders have learned to lead the self and others from the inside out, building healthy and sustainable relationships.


Every Wednesday, Valencore’s InsideOut BlogSquad publishes articles for leaders seeking greater authenticity and mindfulness in their leadership practice.  For the next 6 months (April-Sept 2016), follow Valencore’s expert team of guest writers to learn more about how they navigate inside out leadership and how you can practice leadership from a place that is more genuine, aware, and present to expand your leadership potential. Follow our BlogSquad and explore your leadership edge with us.

Taylor Peyton Roberts

Dr. Taylor Peyton Roberts is Co-Founder and Managing Partner of Valencore Consulting, and she is organizing the InsideOut Leadership Blog Series in collaboration with Dr. Crystal Dujowich.  Taylor’s recent research collaborations and publications examine authenticity in leaders, employee work passion, employee affect, and power.  In 2014, her dissertation work, which offered a new conceptual framework and validated psychological assessment for authenticity in leaders, received the William P. Foster Dissertation of the Year Award from the University of San Diego.  Taylor and her colleagues recently received the Richard A. Swanson award for research excellence by the Academy of Human Resource Development for their article in the Human Resource Development Quarterly (2015).  She has authored and presented over 40 research studies to academic conferences and general audiences.  She holds a Ph.D. in Leadership Studies from the University of San Diego (2014), an M.S. in Industrial/Organizational Psychology from San Diego State University (2008), and a B.S. in Psychology from Long Beach State (2005).  Taylor is based in San Diego, where she enjoys hiking outdoors, hanging out in coffee shops, and playing beach volleyball.

Crystal Dujowich

Dr. Crystal Dujowich is a Co-Founder and Managing Partner of Valencore Consulting, as well as the Director of Leadership Development for the California State University system.  Crystal’s research interests include women in leadership, mindful leadership, global leadership, and systems awareness.  An award-winning scholar and facilitator, she has been formally trained by the Leadership Institute, Groups Relations International, and Public Conversations West. Additionally, Crystal brings over 10 years of experience in organizational leadership and has been recognized by Dell and the International Leadership Association for her work. She holds a Ph.D. in Leadership Studies from the University of San Diego (2014), an M.A. in Leadership from San Diego State University (2008), and is a certified 200-hr Yoga and Alternative Therapy Instructor through Yoga Alliance.

Lonnie R. Morris Jr.

Dr. Lonnie  R. Morris, Jr. is an organizational behavior specialist with particular expertise in leadership, ethics, innovation, authenticity, and organizational culture. His career spans more than 15 years as a senior university administrator, nonprofit board member, and leadership researcher. Lonnie is an organization and leadership development consultant who works primarily with higher education clients on an array of change management projects related to enrollment, retention, and organizational culture. Lonnie is also faculty in the Business Psychology department at the Chicago School for Professional Psychology where he teaches in the Ph.D. in Organizational Leadership program. His leadership research areas include authenticity, ethics, innovation. Lonnie earned the Ph.D. in Organizational Leadership from the University of Maryland Easter Shore, the M.S. in Organization Development from Johns Hopkins University, and the B.S. in Marketing from Morgan State University.

Cynthia M. Sims

Dr. Cynthia Sims is an Assistant Professor for the Master’s program in Human Resource Development at Clemson University’s Eugene T. Moore School of Education. She has extensive expertise in learning leadership and strategy, operations, evaluation and statistics, instructional design and distance learning, learning management systems, human performance technology, organizational development, and human resources. Dr. Sims completed her doctorate in organizational leadership at University of Maryland Eastern Shore where she focused on the leadership and business practices of small business owners. She is a member of the International Leadership Association (ILA) and the Academy of Human Resource Development (AHRD). Her most recent research is “Managing interference between leader and gender identities: Determining an antecedent to the authentic leadership framework within U.S. small business owners, (2015).”  For more information on Cynthia’s research, please access:  

Cynthia has a M. Ed. from Harvard University’s School of Education and a B.S.

from Lake Forest College in psychology. Before coming to Clemson, Dr. Sims was employed with a U.S. fortune 100 company and winner of Training Magazine’s Top 125 award. There, she served in a number of capacities including Director of Staff Operations, Director of Learning and Performance Improvement, and Director of Human Resources. Prior to that, Dr. Sims was with an international consulting firm. Dr. Sims is an empty nester who hails from Chicago and has lived in Columbus, Ohio and Herndon, Virginia. She enjoys the ballet, jazz, and watercolors in her spare time. She likes to travel. To connect with Dr. Sims, she asks you to send her an invitation to LinkedIn.

Stacey Williams

Stacey is an international educator with a background in student affairs, leadership studies, and social justice education. She is passionate about expanding social and ecological consciousness and believes that human development and inner change are at the crux of this pursuit. This vision was developed through her award-winning thesis research where she asked, "how do we pursue justice-learning at the University of San Diego's Women's Center?". Since completing her Master's in Higher Education Leadership, she's taught programs in eight countries, written curriculum exploring the intersections of service-learning and identity development, and now mentors soon-to-be college grads on how to do a year of service after school. Currently, she lives in Nelson, New Zealand where she does program development for a gap year organization. Yoga instructor and mystic practitioner, Stacey's writing and work are an extension of her spirituality and pursuit of being.


Nick Franco

Dr. Nick Franco (he/him/his) is a queer, feminist, multiracial, cisgender male with passions for and professional experience in empowering college student populations, promoting and expanding equity, and engaging in meaningful and intersectional social justice initiatives. He currently serves as the Pride Center Manager at Eastern Washington University. Nick has a Ph.D. in Leadership Studies from the University of San Diego, where his dissertation research explored the minority resource eligibility of college students with one white parent and one parent of color. Nick has extensive experience facilitating presentations, trainings, and workshops regarding intersectionality, identity development, diversity and inclusion, cultural competency, and leadership development. When Nick is not at work or writing his dissertation, he enjoys playing tennis competitively, watching horror films, and finding the best local doughnut shops.

Krystal Brandt

Krystal Brandt, Authenticity Coach, is a soulful, sensual siren who lovingly and powerfully guides high-achieving women back to their innermost desires by re-introducing them to their own intuitive whispers of wisdom. She brings a provocative, feminine and powerful edge to creating deeply connective experiences where vulnerability is invited, divisive walls come down and your truest self comes out to play.

Taylor Harrell

Taylor Harrell, M.A. is an adjunct professor and doctoral student in the Leadership Studies Department at the University of San Diego. Her scholarly research examines the relationship between power and compassion and its implications in developing effective organizational interventions and peace-building initiatives. Taylor has expertise in consulting, coaching, and facilitating dialogues in diverse contexts, including the UCSD Healthcare System and various non-profit organizations. Taylor also serves as an Instructor and Assistant Program Developer at the UCSD Center for Mindfulness, where she and her colleagues recently created the most widely used Mindful Self-Compassion curriculum for young adults. She travels internationally to train professionals in the implementation of mindfulness programs as a way of creating more conscious organizational cultures. Aside from scholarly and professional endeavors, Taylor maintains a consistent yoga practice, competes in West Coast Swing dancing, and regularly attends stand-up comedy shows.

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