Communication Trainer and Coach
In 1982 I moved to Basel to marry my Swiss husband, who I had met six years earlier. Having graduated from Yale University with a degree in philosophy, able to speak German, and not expecting life here to be as different from life in the U.S. as it is, I was surprised at how hard the transition was. The challenge and rewards of re-forging my identity led me to pursue a four-year course in applied psychology. When I completed my training, I decided to devote part of my public service work to helping expatriates in the Basel area to cope with the challenges of culture crossing and make the most of their stay abroad. For nearly 20 years I have been regularly conducting the workshop “Surviving and Thriving in a Foreign Culture” to help expats recognize and overcome culture shock and better understand Swiss values and mentality.
After teaching English for many years and serving for two and a half years as Head of Language Training for Roche, I decided to start my own company in 1990. Since then I have been conducting courses and coaching individuals, primarily for corporate clients in the pharmaceutical and banking industry, in all aspects of interpersonal communication. I regularly lead intercultural awareness courses for multinational companies to support the on-boarding of new employees and the collaboration of multicultural teams. I also coach individuals and families I have worked with hundreds of expats and have a deep insight into the challenges they face and how to overcome them.
In 2009 I was invited to participate in the Zukunftswerkstattof the CMS Sozialkonferenz on highly qualified migrants and served on the advisory board of the recently published ecos study on the challenges and potential of expats in the Basel region. Two years ago I was elected into the BS Migration and Integration Commission.
I have now lived more than half of my life in the cosmopolitan village of Basel and feel at home here. I am still married to the man I fell in love with in Davos 35 years ago. Our eighteen-year-old daughter attended public schools and speaks five languages fluently. She is a global citizen, with roots here but a deep understanding and acceptance of cultural differences, active in the European Youth Parliament and ready to live anywhere in the world.