Empowerment Toolbox is a team of trained coaches and expert consultants dedicated to empowering people with the tools they need to realize their visions and goals. We are here to help create change -gracefully and successfully. Founded by Karen Beckman, the philosophy behind Empowerment Toolbox is simple. Change occurs when three things are present: clarity of vision, commitment to change, and meaningful, practical support.

At Empowerment Toolbox, we are here to support you. We are here to coach you to become a creative leader, professionally and personally. We are here to help you get clear on your vision and we are here to coach you toward making it a reality. We offer the tools to manage conflict and to manage stress. Empowerment Toolbox strives to provide coaching and training in all the areas that support authentic professional and personal development.



Karen Beckman, Founder and Chief Empowerment Officer of Empowerment Toolbox has been coaching management teams and individuals to achieve creative leadership goals since 1998.


Having spent 14 years in the corporate world as an advertising and marketing executive, Ms. Beckman is intimately familiar with the management and motivation issues facing corporations and employees alike.

During her tenure in corporate America, Beckman was intrigued by the effect different corporate cultures and management styles had on an individual’s potential success. Beckman noted that some very bright and well-trained people succeeded easily while others simply did not. In fact, she witnessed some individuals actually fail under one style of management and flourish under another. She discovered first hand that a very specific type of support inspires and empowers people to reach their highest potential. She found encouragement, inspiration, challenge, accountability and objectivity – the very tenets of the coaching relationship - to be the “magic ingredients” for success.

Ms. Beckman’s entrepreneurial spirit and passion for helping people to succeed with confidence and balance in their lives ultimately drove her to devote herself full-time to coaching and development. Her training initially began with a yearlong certification in Neuro Linguistic Programming, the science of optimizing interpersonal and intrapersonal communication. With the desire to become an even better manager, she continued her “extra curricular” training at Coaches Training Institute in California where she completed advanced training and received a Coactive Professional and Personal Coaching certification. She holds an additional coaching certification from the International Coach Federation and is also qualified to evaluate individuals with the Myers-Briggs Personality Type Indicator.

Ms. Beckman, a New York City native, earned a psychology degree at Cornell University in Human Development and Family Study. She began her career at Grey Advertising in account management where she gained insight into the workings of leaders, teams, groups and individuals within advertising agencies and corporations alike. On the road to Executive Vice President, Group Account Director at Deutsch, Inc., her positions required counsel to and close relationships with senior clients at companies including Procter and Gamble, Clairol, Glaxo Wellcome, General Mills and IKEA.

With an expertise in partnering with senior corporate leaders to diagnose strategic management challenges and opportunities, Ms. Beckman currently specializes in leadership coaching and conducts several varied development workshops.

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Elaine S. Rosenblum is a labor and employment attorney, mediator, facilitator and 13 year advertising agency and corporate marketing veteran with extensive experience working with several Fortune 500 companies.

During a year of intensive study and skill building in conflict resolution, negotiation and mediation in law school, Ms. Rosenblum realized that mediation technique had far reaching applications in managing corporate relationships. Borrowing from the mediation process she employs in the legal arena, Ms. Rosenblum marries her technical skills in conflict resolution with her extensive experience as a corporate executive.

During her corporate tenure, Ms. Rosenblum was most noted for her ability to raise the client relationship management bar to superior levels while working at Saatchi & Saatchi, McCann-Erickson, J. Walter Thompson, Rapp Collins Worldwide and Time, Inc. Her client roster included Nestle Beverage Company, Nabisco Biscuit Division, Delta, Northwest, Lufthansa and Braniff Airlines, Mercedes-Benz USA, Bank One/First USA, Cunard Cruise Lines, Hotels and Resorts, The Discovery Channel, and Entertainment Weekly, Fortune, Life, Money, People, Sports Illustrated and Time magazines.

Indeed, Ms. Rosenblum understands deeply the working dynamics of the service provider-client relationship, as well as the practical problems, frustration and conflict that corporate managers working in an inter-disciplinary model face. As such, she can uniquely apply the tool of mediation to help build and manage long-term strategic partnerships.

Ms. Rosenblum earned a B.S. in Advertising at The University of Texas at Austin and is a graduate of Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law and Harvard Law School’s Advanced Negotiation Program for Lawyers. To date, she has conducted over 60 court-referred mediations at the Manhattan Mediation Center in New York City. She has won American Bar Association sponsored negotiation competitions and has written legal articles on the applications of mediation in the corporate environment and on mediation theory. Ms. Rosenblum was recently invited to join The Association for Conflict Resolution. She is a member of the New York bar and is currently admitted to practice law in New York State.

Nancy Slocum is a certified professional coach who has been coaching with Empowerment Toolbox since 1998.

Ms. Slocum holds a Personal and Professional Co-Active Coaching Certification from the Coaches Training Institute and a Coaching Credential from the International Coach Federation.

Ms. Slocum specializes in Executive Coaching, Life Coaching and Relationship Coaching. Prior to her coaching career, Ms. Slocum spent 15 years in higher education where her responsibilities included team supervision, group facilitation, project management, and coaching of top executives. She previously owned and operated two successful businesses in the San Francisco bay area.

As an Executive Coach, Nancy Slocum partners with clients to strategize for optimal performance, learning and personal satisfaction. She helps people to clarify their talents, build upon their strengths and work through challenges successfully. She brings particular expertise to the coaching alliance in the areas of effective communication, collaboration, team motivation and conflict resolution.

As a Life Coach, Ms. Slocum becomes a powerful ally, using inquiry, reflection and intuition to help clients create a detailed vision of the life they want and a practical plan to attain those goals that will result in greater success, self-expression and personal satisfaction. Ms. Slocum works with clients on a weekly basis, to take concrete steps toward fulfillment of their agenda. She holds her clients accountable, and challenges, champions and supports them in the process.

In Relationship Coaching, Nancy Slocum coaches clients to create and sustain relationships that are authentic and empowering. She helps people in relationships to clarify their issues, design a positive vision for their relationship and to acknowledge and make requests of one another. Ms. Slocum supports and assists clients in designing new behaviors to practice each week that forward their agenda, and rekindle the energy of their original good will and commitment.

Nancy Slocum brings her lifelong commitment to personal growth and excellence to all of her coaching work. In addition to her coaching and business credentials, she is an ordained non-denominational minister, and has extensive experience with the David Bohmian Dialogic Process and The Untraining, a process that promotes diversity and multiculturalism.


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Susan Spiegel helps people manage reflexive stress reactions by teaching them self-hypnosis tools they can use on an ongoing basis. Clients gain valuable skills that help them attain a more relaxed, alert, and positive state, even during times that might typically cause them stress or anxiety.

Hypnotherapy is the therapeutic use of the power of the mind, proven effective by the medical and dental professions, and widely used from corporate settings to police work. When people experience stress, they often fall into a psychological state that inhibits productivity. Low energy, loss of concentration, short tempers, aggression and withdrawal can all result. Teaching clients to relax and focus when under pressure, is greatly empowering for them. Knowing that there are simple and dependable ways to learn and practice the 'relaxation response' helps people manage themselves and their environment in a more confident manner.

Ms. Spiegel is certified as a Master of Ericksonian NLP Hypnosis at the New York Training Institute for NLP (1993); certified by the Alchemy Institute of Healing in Emotional Clearing (1996); certified in Sports Performance Enhancement by the National Guild of Hypnotists (2001). Ms. Spiegel has also completed advanced courses in Conflict Resolution at the International Center for Cooperation and Conflict Resolution at Columbia University. In addition, she has been teaching since 1986, most recently at Parsons School of Design, at The Rainbow's End Healing Center in Hillsdale, and with Empowerment Toolbox.

Ms. Spiegel understands the stressful life of an executive: she spent 20 years as a creative executive, including 12 years as an Senior Vice President, Creative Director, at NW Ayer and Grey Advertising. Besides the joy of creative problem solving, she was valued as someone who was able to communicate well across corporate cultures including Procter and Gamble, General Mills, The Darden Group, Bristol Myers, Quaker Oats, Hallmark, and 3M.

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Heidi Frieze is a yoga practitioner certified in Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapy, Integrative Yoga Therapy, prenatal and Bikram yoga. She also holds a Masters Degree in Clinical Social Work.

Currently, Heidi is working both as a yoga therapist, offering individual and small group sessions, and as a clinical social worker, seeing clients at a New York psychoanalytic institute.

Heidi’s goal has been to utilize techniques from a wide range of disciplines in order to best meet the needs of her varied clientele. Towards this end, she has attended numerous workshops and retreats over the past 10 years in hatha yoga, experiential movement, anatomy, meditation, and psychology. She also has teaching certificates in Yamuna Body Rolling, Active Isolated Stretching, and is certified in Reiki I.

Heidi is a native New Yorker who lived in northern California for 10 years after obtaining a B.A. from Vassar College. While on the West Coast, she completed a Masters Degree in Journalism at U.C. Berkeley and worked in real estate for four years before returning to New York City. It was during her career as a real estate agent that Heidi first became interested in yoga. She found that it was a great way to relieve stress and get a good workout. Through her personal experience of physical injuries, Heidi also became interested in the therapeutic aspects of yoga. As a result, Heidi currently utilizes a combination of vigorous and gentle therapeutic yoga postures in her teaching, emphasizing correct alignment and safe exploration of the body/mind connection. Heidi has also created individual programs for clients with a variety of conditions including: chronic lower back pain, stress, pregnancy, infertility, limited range of motion due to injury or the natural aging process, mild depression and anxiety. As a Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapy practitioner, Heidi works privately with clients using assisted yoga postures to facilitate verbal exploration and help release long-held tension and emotions trapped in the body. She also uses breathwork, guided imagery and meditation to help clients restore a sense of balance and well being in their lives.

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