Bio + Resumé

Deb Gaut is a leadership/success coach and the Chief Vision Officer of Deb Gaut Coaching, a woman-owned small business that helps leaders, managers, and high performers thrive in their lives and careers. Leaders regularly rely on her to help them craft bold visions; develop and implement strategies for achieving leadership, career, and life goals; master their mindsets and overcome obstacles and challenges; and maximize their human potential. She believes in taking a whole-person approach to coaching that helps leaders create a healthy balance between work and well-being—even in high-stakes environments.

Deb manages all aspects of Deb Gaut Coaching, including long- and short-range planning, business strategy and development, marketing and promotion, financial management, and contract execution.

With a 40-year career spanning government, business, industry, and academia, Deb brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to her customers and clients. She is passionate about working with leaders and high performers at all levels of the organization – from individuals serving in government agencies and large companies to creatives, innovators, and difference makers in the entrepreneurial space.

Deb enjoys coaching around a wide variety of issues, including visioning, strategy development, leadership development, team performance, communication, conflict management, stress management, goal setting, decision-making, problem-solving, and accountability.

In addition to her work as a coach and facilitator, Deb has 25+ years of communication training and development (T&D) experience. As a function of that experience, she had the privilege of serving as Education Director (#2 leadership position) for the International Right of Way Association (IRWA), where she led and managed all educational and professional development functions of the 6000+ member association for 2.5 years.

Finally, as a researcher, Deb co-authored three successful university textbooks in the discipline of Communication. Additionally, she authored or co-authored 10 book chapters, 14 refereed journal publications, and 39 conference papers—presented at the international, national, and regional levels. Her most recent, self-published book is titled, Morph, Pivot, Launch: Navigate Your Job Search in Turbulent Times (KDP/Amazon: December 2020).

Experience: Business | Government (2010-Present)

Deb Gaut Coaching | Boomalally LLC, St. Louis Area, MO, 2017–Present

Founder/Chief Vision Officer

  • Leadership + Success Coach – assist leaders at all levels of the organization in tapping into their purpose, passions, and dreams; crafting bold visions for themselves and their organizations; developing and implementing strategies for successfully achieving career, leadership, and life goals; mastering their mindsets and overcoming obstacles and challenges; and maximizing their potential (Mar 2019-Present)
  • In 2022, served as leadership coach on contract with Pherson (Reston, VA), with NGA as customer. Clients included leaders and high performers through Pay Band 5s (100+ hours; 1:1 coaching; virtual and face-to-face)
  • Facilitated or co-facilitated six (6) half-day CliftonStrengths workshops and 1 DISC Assessment workshop on behalf of Pherson at NGA. Debriefed group and individual CliftonStrengths assessments
  • Associate Coach, BetterUp (2023-present)

US Federal Government | NGA, Saint Louis, MO + Washington, DC Area, 2010-2017

Human Capital Function

Roles Included:

  • Program Performance Officer/Business Analytics Officer – successfully launched an agency-level customer opinions research team; managed program and resources to support data-driven decision-making by agency leadership re: the customer experience
  • Instructional Systems Designer – effectively collaborated with subject matter experts to capture learning requirements for a multi-day course
  • Academic Administrator – developed multiple, external learning opportunities for agency employees
  • Training + Education Instructor – in coordination with senior management, co-facilitated 14 five-day orientations to increase awareness and understanding of agency’s mission, vision, and goals; co-facilitated two (2) three-day supervisory workshops, focusing on roles and responsibilities, challenges of “leading from the middle,” and rewards of effectively balancing leadership and management skills

Notable Accomplishment: Received a prestigious, agency-level award for outstanding leadership

Experience: Academia | Industry (1985-2009)

As a full-time faculty member, Deb taught the following university courses across her 25-year academic career:

  • Intercultural Business Communication (Accelerated MBA Program)
  • Organizational Communication; Advanced Organizational Communication (undergraduate)
  • Business Communication; Business & Professional Communication (undergraduate)
  • Interpersonal Communication (graduate, undergraduate)
  • Intrapersonal Communication (graduate)
  • Communication Research Methods (graduate, undergraduate)
  • Communication Theory (undergraduate)
  • Introduction to Communication; Public Speaking (undergraduate)
  • Listening; Job Interviewing; Managing Communication Apprehension (undergraduate)

 Universities where Deb served:

  • California State University, Long Beach, Long Beach, CA | Information Systems Department, 2003-2009
  • James Madison University, Harrisonburg, VA | School of Communication Studies, 1999-2003
  • University of West Florida, Pensacola, FL | Communication Arts Department, 1996-1999, 1991-1993*
  • Auburn University, Auburn, AL | Department of Speech Communication, 1988-1991
  • University of South Alabama, Mobile, AL | Department of Communication, 1985-1987

*From 1993-1996, Deb served as Education Director for the IRWA in Gardena, CA.


  • PhD, Communication, University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK, 1984
  • MA, Speech Communication, Auburn University, Auburn, AL, 1980
  • BA, English, Auburn University, Auburn, AL, 1978

Accreditations | Certifications

  • Associate Certified Coach (ACC), International Coaching Federation, 2021
  • Certified Professional Coach (CPC), Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching, 2019
  • Energy Leadership Index - Master Practitioner (ELI-MP), Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching, 2019
  • COR.E Dynamics - Life Coaching and Transitions Specialist, Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching, 2019

Experienced or Certified in Administering the Following
Leadership Assessments

  • CliftonStrengths
  • Energy Leadership Index (Certified ELI-MP)

Professional Associations

  • International Coaching Federation, 2021-Present


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