Russ Powell Consulting > Awards and Recognition

Awards and Endorsements


Industry Awards

Award: Training Magazine’s Top 125 Organizational Learning Programs for exemplary corporate universities, evaluation procedures, and internal best practices.

Organization: Sun Microsystems, Sun Learning Services

Award: ISPI Award of Excellence for Outstanding Human Performance Intervention

Project: National Security Cutter C4ISR “Deepwater” Training

Organization: L3 Communications for the U.S. Coast Guard

Award: ISPI Award of Excellence for Outstanding Human Performance Intervention

Project: Health Services Technician “A” School

Organization: L3 Communications for the U.S. Coast Guard

Award: Brandon Hall Gold Excellence in Learning Award for Best Custom Content

Project: Selling Business Value: Account Planning

Organization: Sun Microsystems

Award: ASTD BEST Award for innovation and overall excellence in employee learning and development

Organization: Sun Microsystems, Sun Learning Services


“Recently, we asked Russ to take on two big projects: document the most critical procedures of our field team (our Field Managers) and build a new hire training program that would enable new members of our workforce to get up-to-speed and perform in their roles quickly and efficiently. In the first project, Russ worked side-by-side with our Field Managers and their leaders for several weeks translating his interviews and observations into a set of procedures we now call the Field Manager Handbook. In the second, he worked with executives, team leaders and subject matter experts across the organization to build a state-of-the art New Employee Orientation (NEO) program. Both projects have received rave reviews and exceeded our expectations (evaluations of his work are consistently over 4.5 out of 5). We now have Russ on yet another project that will duplicate much of his work with Field Managers in other teams.”

Andrew “Birchy” Birch Co-founder, CEO

Sungevity, Inc.

“Russ was the lead developer on a very important sales course for Sun Microsystems. We asked Russ to create a new design, based on Thiagi's four-door approach to eLearning. This was a challenging project with demanding clients, complex subject matter and political tension. Russ managed our internal client expertly. His final solution was praised by our client and, from my perspective as Director of Sales Training, is the best course we've developed—elegantly designed with high-value content and methodology.”

Joe Campbell, Director, Sales Training

Sun Microsystems, Inc.

“Russ partnered with me on a large, complex, highly visible and time-starved instructional design project to help integrate two engineering organizations that had recently merged [Roche and Genentech]. We succeeded in part due to Russ's structured, creative and elegant approach to training design. He is amazingly productive and at the same time able to focus on those few key performances that help people get up to speed without wasting their time. On a personal note, Russ is fun and stimulating to work with. He knows his craft so well that we could address logistical, tactical and strategic issues altogether. In addition, he has a knack for engaging people. Some integration efforts are met with skepticism and delay, which can destroy anticipated gains. Russ's engagement of subject matter experts and the quality of his results created enthusiasm and confidence for the program. It is too early to see results, but the impact will affect an annual project portfolio of $1/2 billion. I am actively looking for future opportunities to work with Russ again.”

Walter Ratcliff, Director

Ratcliff Consultants

“We hired Russ to facilitate a webinar for our team of 30+ solar technology instructors on ways to become better, more engaging trainers. He presented several elements of his program Seven Steps to Becoming a Better Instructor (or How I Started Doing Less Telling and More Training). The program exceeded our expectations as he engaged every participant and modeled what he was teaching. One of our instructors' commented, ‘Best webinar ever! Great use of Google-docs and other techniques to help students interact. The two hours went by really fast!’ Russ' expertise is vast and his ever-present focus on performance-based training invaluable. If you're interested in making the most of your training initiatives, include him among your advisors. I recommended him highly.”

Kathy Swartz, Director of Training

Solar Energy International

Paonia, CO

“The Coast Guard hired Russ to assist the Health Services Technician (HS) School with re-writing our “A” School curriculum. Russ was charged with leading a team of curriculum designers and editors dedicated to this project. Despite initial resistance among the staff regarding moving from a knowledge-based style of teaching to a performance-based style, Russ consistently coached us and encouraged us, all the while demonstrating a scope of knowledge and patience that was hard to match. I was impressed with his professionalism and his dedication; he helped us ensure that we graduated confident and competent technicians.”

–CWO Darin Schneider, Course Chief, Health Services “A” School

United States Coast Guard Training Center

Petaluma, CA

“Russ brought a valuable mix of instructional design expertise, project management skills, and real-world business experience to our team. He’s also a great communicator who’s good at blending inquiry and advocacy. He collaborates well with a wide range of players -- from technical to non-technical employees, and senior-level executives to field-level workers. And he gets results. Outcomes from our work together included better and more sustained adoption of sales methodologies by Sun sales people, which resulted in revenue growth through the finding, growing and winning of more opportunities.”

John Duggan, Senior Manager, Global Lead for Sales Methodologies,

Sun Microsystems, Inc.

“Russ is an excellent project manager and an effective instructional designer. I was always impressed by his initiative, flexibility, teamwork, and interpersonal skills. He has a unique talent for getting the job done.”

Sivasailam “Thiagi” Thiagarajan

Resident Mad Scientist, The Thiagi Group

Vice President, QB International

“Russ has both a highly disciplined approached to design and a learner-centered approach to facilitation. The combination of these traits differentiates him from many in this field. As his manager I was always confident he would produce as promised. Russ has impeccable character and is a pleasure to work with. I endorse him without reservation and would absolutely hire him again.”

Chris Holmberg, Director of Learning

Nelson Human Resource Solutions

“I had occasion to work with Russ recently on an eLearning project which addressed content for learning, testing and practicing by a global audience. Russ demonstrated a high caliber of skill leading a team of talented contributors recruited from across a wide spectrum of nationalities and cultures. His leadership demonstrated a clear view of the concept, deliverables, timing and quality required to succeed. The project was completed on time, within budget and to the high expectations of the requirement.”

Greg Kiernan, Director, Solutions Practice

The TAS Group

“Russ helped the staff at Coast Guard Training Center, Petaluma, CA, re-design two major training programs. Russ helped us complete the design and development of these programs in record time, exceeding our expectations. He helped raise standards for training programs here on the base.”

– LCDR Peter Seaman, Training Manager

United States Coast Guard Training Center

Petaluma, CA

“Russ is an excellent eLearning project manager and instructional designer with solid technical and customer skills. Russ contributed enormously to the development of the Qube Learning System. He has attention to detail yet understands the big picture.”

Andy Kimball, CEO

Qube Learning

“Russ is one of those rare individuals who can bring rigor to a project without impeding the creativity of his clients and colleagues. His expertise in flowcharting is particularly useful for conveying processes and procedures and invaluable in conducting task analyses. As a team leader Russ achieves that ideal balance between managing and mentoring his team. His interpersonal skills were quite useful in navigating a military organization, where chain-of-command and strict management hierarchies are the norm. Russ brings people together for productive work sessions and builds consensus seemingly without effort.”

Deborah Klein, Senior Instructional Designer

L-3 Communications

“I highly recommend Russ. He was able to effectively manage several projects simultaneously, and was especially adept at managing external resources while maintaining a top notch quality control process. He was able to communicate effectively between the client, the outside contractors, and his inside resources with the primary goal of delivering a product of the highest quality.”

Brandon Carson, Manager, Media Design Services

Sun Microsystems, Inc.

“Russ is a born facilitator. His easygoing delivery and thoughtful questioning make him a true winner with our processes.”

– Maureen McCaslin, Certification Leader


“Russ is a creative, high-quality instructional designer. He executes projects based on requirements, and improves them with his ideas. If you want great results, I highly recommend Russ. He’s very easy to work with.”

Cathie Staley, Senior Sales Training Manager

NetApp, Inc.