Dr. Vanessa Downing is a licensed psychologist and certified executive coach. She received her doctoral degree in counseling psychology from the University of Maryland, College Park.
The early years of her career were spent as a cardiovascular psychologist working at patients’ bedsides as they faced life altering diagnoses. Her experiences on multidisciplinary teams sparked an enduring passion for the well-being of physicians, healthcare workers, and those who lead during times of crisis and trauma.
In 2017, Dr. Downing co-founded one of the nation's first hospital-based centers dedicated to systemwide interventions and wellbeing services tailored for healthcare workers. Her role as Director of the Center for WorkLife Wellbeing emphasized advocacy for frontline workers, leadership development, and organizational implementation of empirically-validated well-being practices. Heading a team of psychologists and researchers, she became a national thought leader, providing mentorship, education, and consultation to healthcare systems across the country. Dr. Downing led grant-funded mixed methods research on the application of emerging best practices to the psychological treatment of healthcare workers, authored multiple practical guides and publications, and produced multimedia continuing education for therapists working with this very special population.
In 2021, Dr. Downing founded Congruence Coaching & Consultation to expand her work developing the agency and potential of organizational leaders across multiple industries. She has since worked with leaders and executives in healthcare systems across the country, small business owners and start-ups based locally and internationally, and innovators and educators in academia, the media, and beyond. She is certified in Hogan Assessment and the Group Development Questionnaire. Dr. Downing’s approach emphasizes bringing evidence-based psychological principles and assessments out of the ivory tower and into the hands of leaders so they can achieve greater clarity and take meaningful action.