Ellen Taaffe is a Clinical Assistant Professor at the Kellogg School of Management, where she teaches Personal Leadership Insights and is the Director of Women's Leadership Program. She designs and delivers the Kellogg Women's Leadership Seminar series, the signature program for female students across Kellogg's Full-time, Evening/Weekend, and Executive MBA programs. She is a featured speaker and executive leadership coach in Kellogg's Executive Education programs on Leadership and Governance and in MBA Leadership courses and programs.
Outside of Kellogg, Ellen serves as an independent board director for two public and one private company boards, where she is a Lead Director, Vice Chair, chairs two Nominating and Governance Committees and one Compensation Committee, and serves as a member of two audit committees. She is a Certified Board Director and Board Leadership Fellow with the National Association of Corporate Directors. Ellen runs a leadership advisory consulting, speaking, and coaching business and is a TEDx speaker. She shares her insights on leadership, governance, careers, and advancing women and inclusion through her writing and speaking in corporations, conferences, and universities and in media like Harvard Business Review, Forbes, Business Insider, Washington Post, Kellogg Insight, and WGN radio.
Prior to her academic, governance, and coaching career, Ellen spent 25 years with Fortune 500 companies holding the top brand management post at divisions of PepsiCo, Royal Caribbean, and Whirlpool Corporation. She built world-class brands, led multi-billion-dollar portfolios with P&L responsibility, launched new businesses, led turnarounds, and merged businesses and cultures post-acquisition. She then pivoted into a growth stage small business as President of Ravel (formerly SDA before sale), a brand strategy consultancy to Fortune 500 clients. Over her career, she has been acknowledged for leading brand portfolios, impactful digital and traditional brand marketing (Gold and Silver Effie awards), business growth (Inc.5000 list), governance (Directors to Watch list), and people leadership (Top Small Company to Work Finalist).
Ellen has loved leading and coaching teams and individuals to create the businesses and careers they desired. She's done this for years as a manager, trainer, and mentor and now as a board director, executive coach, teacher, speaker, and writer. She is passionate about helping businesses and people ascend to higher levels of performance, possibility, and purpose. Additionally, she is on a mission to advance women and inclusion in the workplace. Her mission: More Seats (and Voices) at the Table.
Ellen received her MBA from the Kellogg School of Management in 1997. She also holds a BS from the University of Florida's Warrington College of Business.
Because the course focuses on self-awareness and relationships with others, students rely on interactions with each other to experience vulnerability and growth within an environment of safety and trust. Therefore, students will not receive a letter grade, but rather a "Pass" with 0.5 credits or a "No-Credit" on their transcript. The "Pass" designation will be given if the following requirements are met: 100% attendance (non-negotiable), completion of all assignments, honoring confidentiality, and active participation in class activities and discussions.
Please note that the 100% attendance policy is non-negotiable across all sections and instructors. Only bid on a section for which you are sure you can attend every class session. Review the abbreviated syllabus for that section to confirm the precise meeting dates.