Dr. Lisa Summerour

Facilitator / Consultant / Coach

Lisa is an empowerment coach whose holistic approach to personal and professional development helps align roles and responsibilities with core values. This method benefits clients by enabling individual contributors to feel courageous and confident in bringing their unique talents, skills, and intangible assets to the environment. As a diversity, equity, inclusion, and engagement facilitator and an executive coach, Lisa focuses strongly on accountability. She has been instrumental in helping leaders understand their role in creating diverse teams where individuals feel included so employee engagement, and therefore, discretionary effort, can flourish.


Dr. Lisa has worked as an adjunct professor teaching online courses in career development and exploration; and business ethics and sustainability. She was known for creating successful online teaching environments that resulted in student engagement beyond the course structure. She also worked as an experiential learning specialist in career services. She developed and facilitated live, interactive webinars designed to educate students and alumni on career opportunities and interview preparation.

Customer Service

Dr. Lisa has a strong focus on what she describes as internal and external client satisfaction. Her focus on customer service stems from years in retail and direct sales, and working with corporate clients and individuals as a full-desk recruiter. 


Dr. Lisa has engaged consultants and leaders in the direct sales industry on the national stage, students and young adults at high schools, universities and faith-based organizations, and leaders on an international scale at the Africa Kingdom and Business Leadership Summit. She is credited with having an uncanny ability to engage individuals with her relatable, relevant, and humorous presentation style. 


Dr. Lisa co-authored “The 4-Tions: Your Guide to Developing Successful Job Search Strategies.” “Distribution of The 4-Tions”  reached more than 20 countries. Most recently, Dr. Summerour published the “What Went Well? Journal” What Went Well? is a journal for adults and another designed for children. Both journals encourage individuals to be intentional about focusing on the good things that happen to them, around them, and because of them – daily.


Dr. Lisa is a certified WholeBrain Practitioner and certified to conduct Equitable Leadership Assessments (ELA). Lisa holds a Doctorate in Education with a focus on ethical leadership from Olivet Nazarene University. She earned a master’s degree in management from Indiana Wesleyan University and one in Christian studies focusing on Christian leadership from Grand Canyon University. Her bachelor’s degree in sociology is from Trenton State University. Dr. Lisa is on the Board of Trustees at Villa Maria College in Buffalo, NY, where she also chairs the academic success committee.




In a span of a few hours, I witnessed the flexibility and fluidity of her presentation style as she prompted active participation from industry leaders, and just hours later, held the attention of several thousand young adults who were engaged to the point of having an impromptu Q & A.

Speaker and Keynote – Leadership and Engagement

Rosa Whitaker

President and CEO, The Whitaker Group - "Advancing Business in Africa"

I would have highly recommended Dr. Summerour even before working this closely with her, but now that I have had the opportunity to plan such an important workshop with a woman who deeply understands mentorship, I feel inclined to reach out and recommend her to those who aren’t even looking for facilitators.

Online Workshops: Race & Racism and Mentorship

Sister Desiré Anne-Marie Findlay

Vocational Services , Felician Sisters of North America

Some interesting things about me. 

I was held up in a bank robbery

Through a work program at my high school, I got a job as a teller at Security Savings and Loan in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. It was seventeen days after my seventeenth birthday, a Saturday, when I noticed a man at the door with what looked like, “A stocking cap on his face!?!?” Before it could fully register, they were in the bank, I had a gun pointed at me and it was happening!

I had scoliosis and wore a brace all through high school

Just before starting high school I was diagnosed with scoliosis. My 32° lower curve had me very close to requiring surgery. Instead, I wore a Milwaukee brace like this one – all through high school.

First Black woman crowned Miss New Jersey USA

I was quite the tomboy growing up, so this was a bit of a detour. I am very proud of my pageant experience(s) and the opportunities I was introduced to as a result of stepping way outside my comfort zone.

FYI for you pageant buffs. Vanessa Williams was the first Black woman crowned Miss New Jersey in the Miss America system.

My most cherished award

My most cherished award is from 4th grade. I was a student South Main St. School in Pleasantville, NJ. The award was the Arthur F. Foreman Memorial Award. It’s my most cherished because I didn’t do anything accept “be me” to earn it. It says for “Consideration – Effort – Sportsmanship” 

I pretended to be married to Denzel Washington

My first role in a film was playing opposite Denzel Washington in the movie “Philadelphia” starring Denzel and Tom Hanks.

That other time I was held up at gun point

Yes, it happened again. This time, I’d been studying at Howard University’s library with a friend. We left the building headed to my dorm and were stopped by a guy with a gun. We were two broke college students – bad planning on his part.

It took me 24 years or so to finish my first degree

Yes, I “dropped out” of college. Why do we use the term “dropped out?” How ’bout I just left to do other things!? So, anyway, I finished my bachelor’s degree about 24 years after I started. Then, in this order, I earned a master’s, a doctorate, and a second master’s degree. 

I am a DIY addict

Anything from sewing, painting, to building bookcases and shelves. I love making things with my hands. I always have. I know it’s one of my superpowers because it’s one of the ways I empower myself. It brings me such joy, sometimes after a lot of frustration, creating useful and beautiful objects.


One of my more challenging projects was this two drawer coffee table. It became a battle of wills. Will I quit or will I finish? 



Your life doesn’t have to be pretty to be fabulous. You don’t have to be perfect to be powerful.

Dr. Lisa Summerour


If you’ve gotten this far, now might be the
time, to make time for you.