Coaching Faculty

Western Coaching brings some of the best and most successful coaches to our three campuses — all for the benefit of our students.  All coaching faculty are theologically trained, ministry experienced, and competent coaches.


Jerry Essary

Jerry Essary, D.Min., PCC, ECC

Jerry is a professional coach that has been working with and coaching nonprofit organizations for over 40 years. He has developed materials to help clients discover, articulate, and leverage their unique designs at home, work, and play. He is a coach, mentor coach, coach training facilitator, adjunct professor, and team builder. His driving force is to see his clients have purposeful movement with clear direction.


Linda Miller

Linda Miller, MCC, D.H.L.

Linda Miller believes that successful organizations are supported by strong internal dynamics. Before becoming a coach, Linda worked for 12 years in the behavioral science field, specializing in building productive and collaborative relationships. Currently, Linda serves as an Executive Coach and Global Liaison for Coaching with The Ken Blanchard Companies. Her clients include leaders and teams from Adobe, Black and Decker, Boeing, Deloitte, Duke Energy, Edward Jones, Franklin Templeton, KPMG, NBA, Nissan, Pfizer, Scotia Bank, Wells Fargo, and MBA program staff at the University of Washington and University of Southern California.

Active in the International Coach Federation (ICF), Linda is a former board member and founding recipient of the Master Certified Coach (MCC) designation. She has co-authored two books: Coaching for Christian Leaders and Coaching in Organizations: Best Practices from The Ken Blanchard Companies.

In the not-for-profit arena, Linda and her husband have served on several church staffs, and Linda has coached a number of senior pastors and denominational leaders. In 2009, Linda was awarded an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters by Western Seminary based on her contribution to the Christian coaching community.

Linda lives in Phoenix, AZ with her husband. They have two married daughters.


Jessica Clark

Jessica Clark, PCC

Jessica is an ACC level coach currently living in Elk Grove, CA with her husband and two kids. Jessica is passionate about helping her clients navigate areas in their lives relating to change, transition, and transformation. She is a speaker and facilitates workshops for teams, churches, & non-profits focusing on identifying and understanding one's unique personality so they can consciously, authentically, and intentionally give back to the world around them. Addtionally, Jessica is an internal coach for Western Seminary’s Coaching Training Program and the Global Center for Coaching.

She holds a B.A. in Communication Studies from Westmont College, and a graduate of Western Seminary’s Coach Training Program.

When not immersed in the coaching world, Jessica enjoys spending time with her family, walking, hiking, reading and traveling. 


Bill Graybill

Bill Graybill, PCC

Bill holds a Masters (MA) in Christian Education and a Doctor of Ministry (D.Min.) from Northwest Graduate School of Ministry in Redmond, Wash., where he specialized in leadership and conflict management. Bill is a Certified Anger Management Facilitator (CAMF) and Brain Health Coach with Amen Clinics.

Currently, Bill heads up Peace Mentors, a non-profit which works with pastors and churches to build heathy teams and effective ministries. He coaches conflict resolution, leadership and team development, along with strategic planning for churches and non-profits. Bill also teaches as an adjunct faculty member of Global University and Kenya College of Ministry.

Bill is the author of Resolve Conflict God's Way: The Skills You Need to Make Peace and Coaching For Success: A Guide to the Art of Life Coaching. He has served as a local church pastor for more than 40 years and lives in Albany, OR.


Wenping Li

Wenping (Sophia) Li, PCC

Wenping Li is an ICF Professional Certified Coach (PCC), an author, a speaker and a columnist. Before she focused on coaching, she worked in various fields, including broadcasting, consulting, education, publication, and communication. Wenping coaches in English and Mandarin. She has helped a range of leaders, team members, and individuals to uncover their inner resources, hidden answers, clarity of vision, potential, and opportunities.

Wenping is often called Sophia by many. She loves nature and currently lives in Northern California with her husband. They have two adult children.


Benjamin Olsen

Benjamin Olsen, PCC

Ben is a professional coach who believes in the importance of walking with people on their journey of relational and spiritual growth. He is a developer and equipper whose passion is to help clients refocus on what God is doing and reframe their goals to serve His purposes. As a coach, he draws out insight, clarity and understanding that helps people identify, commit, and unleash targeted action.

Ben spent 16 years as a professional actor before leveraging his training and insights into the helping professions and pastoral care. Over the past 20 years, Ben has been facilitating seminars and workshops, teaching, consulting, pastoral and addictions counseling, and coaching in various contexts. He holds degrees from Western Seminary, Midwestern State, and The American Academy of Dramatic Arts NYC, along with various other certifications. Ben is an internal coach for The Coach Training Program and The Global Center for Coaching.

Ben lives in Portland, OR with his wife and two girls. He enjoys the beauty of the outdoors and is a former mountain guide, raft guide, and world traveler. Now, he can be found 'traveling' to the oasis of the backyard to enjoy family time, gardening, reading, or a good cup of coffee.


Perry Rhue

Perry Rhue, PCC

Perry is a professional mentor-coach to business and life coaches and a former internal Leadership Development Coach at IBM. His 30 plus years of experience in various areas of business gives him a diverse and robust background for coaching coaches and business professionals.

Perry is known for his work in mentor-coaching, executive coaching, team coaching, coach training, talent management, leadership and professional development. His expertise is helping individuals understand their unique personality traits, gifts, talents, strengths, temperament, and "blind spots". Next, he coaches them to a place of effective performance and service within their own business or organization. Perry lives in Atlanta, GA.


Paul Thome

Paul Thome, PCC

Paul grew up in the Sacramento area of California and earned a B.A. in Speech Communications at California State University Sacramento. He attended Western Seminary in Portland, Oregon, and Scribe School at Peninsula Bible Church under the direction of David Roper and the late Ray Stedman. He's spent over 39 years in full-time ministry as a pastor in three different area congregations, and also serves as an adjunct professor for Western Seminary.

Paul's passion in coaching is to help people find and discover their full, God-given potential as human beings by engaging them in powerful conversations about their values, goals, dreams, and intentions. He currently offers personal and professional coaching through LEDR Coaching and Training.

He has been married to his wife Sherri for over 45 years. They have two married adult children and nine grandchildren.


Evan Burns

E.D. Burns, PhD, PCC

E.D. Burns is a professional coach and has an international coaching business. As part of the ICF Bangkok chapter, he coaches around education, EFL, language learning, and intercultural communication skills. He is a consultant for the Highlands Ability Battery, and he also directs the MA in Global Leadership program at Western Seminary.