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Robin R. Means Coleman, PhD

About Robin

Scholar | Author | Leader | Strategist

Robin R. Means Coleman, PhD is a Professor of Media Studies and of African American and African Studies at the University of Virginia. She has held several senior leadership positions. Before joining the University of Virginia, Dr. Coleman was the Vice President & Associate Provost for Institutional Diversity and Inclusion and Chief Diversity Officer, and the Ida B. Wells and Ferdinand Barnett Professor of Communication Studies at Northwestern University. There, she implemented diversity accountability processes by working collaboratively with Northwestern’s 12 schools and colleges on three campuses.

Credentials & Training

Leadership and Performance Coaching Certificate

(ICF certified program), ACT/Brown University

Foundations of Organizational Ombuds Practice,

International Ombuds Association

Academic Leadership Institution, New School/Univ. of Michigan


Institute for Educational Management, Harvard University


Certificate in Diversity and Inclusion, Cornell University


American Council on Education Leadership Academy


Executive Leadership Academy, University of California-Berkeley​

National Intergroup Dialogue Institute

NADOHE Standards of Professional Practice Institute

National Forum on Higher Ed. for the

Public Good Leadership Institute

Inclusive Hiring Certification


Bystander Intervention: Anti-Asian/Xenophobic Harassment


Americans with Disabilities Act Certification


Women Leaders Making a Difference


And more...!

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Coaching Methodology

A 25+ year higher education professional, Dr. Coleman’s practice is informed by cutting-edge social science and humanities scholarship, including her co-authored book, Intercultural Communication for Everyday Life. Her approach to coaching is theoretically-informed and evidence-based. She draws on the tenets of positive psychology-, strengths-, self-determination-, and motivation- theoriesFrom this empowering, ‘positive’ framework, she focuses on cultivating opportunities, fostering growth potential, and setting clients up for lasting success.


Her clients report that they prefer her affirmative, “encouraging” approach to coaching. They reveal coming away from their interactions feeling affirmed,“lighter,” and prepared to further advance their professional growth, productivity goals, and leadership strategies.


Dr. Coleman ascribes to “providence”: timely preparation for future potentialities.


Dr. Coleman specializes in professional development coaching and consulting in higher education for senior leaders, administrators, faculty (TT/Instr.), staff, undergraduate and graduate students, and post-docs.


Most recently, she has provided bespoke coaching, mentoring, and consulting services to clients from Northwestern University, Texas A&M University, the University of Michigan, the University of Pittsburgh, the University of Rochester, the University of Cincinnati, Chatham University, DePaul University, Iowa State University, the University of Virginia, Wayne State University, Baldwin Wallace University, and an executive search and strategist firm.


She supports the following clients through long-term engagement: Faculty (tenure ladder; instructional), Directors, Chairs, Deans (assistant; associate), Vice Presidents, Provosts (assistant; associate), Managers, Supervisors, Diversity Officers, and Lab Directors.

Let’s Connect

Phone Number: 412-525-7130    /     Email:    /      LinkedIn

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