Valerie Nellen is a senior partner at RHR International. She works with client organizations to empower people to know themselves differently, capitalize on their unique traits, and create value by fostering meaning and optionality.
Valerie Nellen, a senior partner at RHR International, leads the firm’s Executive Development practice area. In this role, her focus is on the firm’s unique proficiency as experts in human dynamics and capabilities that drive performance at the top of the house. Building on her personal and professional history, Val works with client organizations to empower people to know themselves differently, capitalize on their unique traits, and create value by fostering meaning and optionality.
Val has depth in specific industries including high tech, retail, natural resources, education-oriented nonprofits, and private equity. Her favorite client engagements are those where the leaders are energized about optimizing their influence on the ecosystems around them.
Prior to joining RHR, Valerie was a consultant, educator, and corporate executive with a focus on performance. She held internal roles in operations and human resources; she was an operations and supply chain consultant with PRTM; and she served as the executive director of executive education at the Paul Merage School of Business at the University of California, Irvine.
Valerie received a bachelor’s degree, cum laude, from Harvard University, where she earned a John Harvard Scholarship and Elizabeth Cary Agassiz Scholarship for academic distinction. Val’s doctorate in counseling psychology is from Virginia Commonwealth University; she graduated with distinction and a specialty in organizational development.
As a lifelong competitive swimmer and former Division I athlete in swimming and water polo, Val believes in a mind-body approach to effectiveness and wellness throughout life. The many summers that she worked as an ocean lifeguard at New York’s Jones Beach were an indelible influence that still impact her approach to people, opportunities, and crises. She is currently a member of the Laguna Beach Open Water Swimming pod.