The ICG Team

The Instructional Coaching Group is a small team of passionate, talented, and hardworking people who want to make a difference. It’s our pleasure to work with partners around the globe to improve the education of all students. If you are interested in ways you can partner with us to improve education, read through the following pages, or contact us about our institutes, on-site workshops, coaching, consulting, or publications.

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Photo of the ICG staff standing in front of 5 foot tall TLC letters at our annual conference.

Jim Knight

Senior Partner

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Jim Knight, Founder and Senior Partner of Instructional Coaching Group (ICG), is also a research associate at the University of Kansas Center for Research on Learning. He has spent more than two decades studying professional learning and instructional coaching. Jim earned his PhD in Education from the University of Kansas and has won several university teaching, innovation, and service awards.

 The pioneering work Jim and his colleagues have conducted has led to many innovations that are now central to professional development in schools. Jim wrote the first major article about instructional coaching for the Journal of Staff Development, and his book Instructional Coaching (2007) offered the first extended description
 of instructional coaching. Jim’s book Focus on Teaching (2014) was the first extended description of how video should be used for professional learning. Recently, writing with Ann Hoffman, Michelle Harris, and Sharon Thomas, Jim introduced the idea of instructional playbooks with their book on that topic.

 Jim has written several books in addition to those described above, including Unmistakable Impact (2011), High-Impact Instruction (2013), Better Conversations (2015), The Impact Cycle (2018), and The Definitive Guide to Instructional Coaching (2021). Knight has also authored articles on instructional coaching and professional learning in publications such as Educational Leadership, The Journal of Staff Development, Principal Leadership, The School Administrator, and Kappan. Jim is also a columnist for Educational Leadership.

Through ICG, Knight conducts coaching workshops, hosts the Facebook Live series, “Coaching Conversations,” and provides consulting for coaching programs around the world.

Jenny Ryschon-Knight

Senior Partner

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Jenny Knight, Senior Partner of ICG, founded the company with Jim Knight in 2006. Jenny co-authors the Reflection Guides and Field Guides and oversees most of the communication, design, and financial aspects of the company. Jenny also partners with Jim to refine the vision and reach of ICG and to increase the impact of its research arm, The Impact Research Lab. Jenny is independently educated with emphases in educational practice, philosophy, and design.

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Michelle Harris

Senior Consultant, West U.S.

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Michelle Harris, Senior Consultant at ICG, began teaching in El Cajon, California. She taught middle school English and social studies before serving as an instructional coach, Title I coordinator, student manager, and assistant principal at three middle schools, a K-8 school, and a 6-12 IBO school, all in Beaverton, Oregon. A seasoned staff developer, Michelle has presented and keynoted all over the United States and in Europe and Africa. She lives in Portland, Oregon, with her husband and two sons. When not working, she enjoys reading, traveling, attending her sons’ numerous sporting events, entertaining friends and family, and sitting in a chair on a sunny beach.

Michelle is co-author of Evaluating Instructional Coaching and The Instructional Playbook.

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Sharon Thomas

Senior Consultant, East U.S.

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Sharon Thomas, Senior Consultant at ICG, is a National Board Certified English teacher, instructional coach, student advocate, and writer. Along with her work in ICG workshops, Sharon developed the ICG Coaching Certification process. She is the founder of the Cecil County [Maryland] Teacher Leadership Network and has presented at conferences across North America on the issues of secondary school literacy and teacher leadership. Her experience with teacher leadership in school reform was published in Principal LeadershipSharon is the author of Evaluating Instructional Coaching and co-author of The Instructional Playbook.

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Amy Musante

Senior Consultant, Midwest U.S.

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Amy Musante is an educator and instructional coach, and at the heart of her work is a belief in relationships and helping diversified school communities move into action that authentically suits their unique needs. She spent 17 years in Oregon as a High School English Language Arts teacher,  Instructional Coach, and Secondary Schools Intervention Specialist. She received her MA from Teachers College, Columbia University and has done considerable work partnering with the Teachers College Reading and Writing Project with a focus on literacy at the secondary level. In her free time loves reading, spending time in nature, seeing  friends and family, and cheering on Buffalo sports teams at a more reasonable hour on the East Coast!

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Keysha McIntyre


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Keysha McIntyre is an educational consultant, instructional coach, writer, and founder of MoldingMinds Moments. She has a Masters in Technology in Education and a Specialist in Curriculum, Instruction, Management and Administration. She taught elementary before serving as a math coach at various schools, Math Lead Specialist, and District Coach of Coaches. She has modeled in K-8 classrooms and provided professional development for thousands of teachers, coaches, and instructional leaders. She has presented at national conferences on math instructional practices and instructional coaching. During the beginning of the pandemic, Keysha coauthored Making Moments Matter: In A Virtual Learning Experience.

She recently relocated to the sunny state of Florida. She has one son, who is also an educator. Keysha loves spending time with her family, ministry, sports, cooking, and of course shopping.

Emily Malatesta

Chief Operating Officer

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Emily Malatesta, Chief Operating Officer at ICG, graduated from Arizona State University with a master’s degree in education in 2011. Emily’s focus at ICG is to ensure that the organization is running as effectively and efficiently as possible. She also considers herself to be a good listener, and supports the team anyway she can. She loves that ICG at its core is passionate and dedicated to the betterment of themselves and others. In her free time, she enjoys playing on the beach with her family, hiking with her dog and traveling.

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Ruth Ryschon


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Ruth started with ICG in 2007, handling the administrative side of ICG from her home in rural central Nebraska. But as the company has grown and more people brought on-board, her work has become more focused on the bookkeeping and payroll portion of the business. We have also been blessed to be able to move into an office building, that now provides office space for both Brooke and Ruth, along with warehouse space for our books and other materials.

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Brooke Deaton

Administrator, Operations Manager for One Fine Bird Press

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Brooke Deaton, Administrator at ICG, manages all workshop and event registrations, supervises online product purchases, and operates the shipping of product and event materials. She also assists Ruth on additional administrative tasks as needed. Brooke loves being a part of ICG and hopes she can make an impact in her corner of the world.

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Erin Krownapple

Director of Events

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Erin Krownapple, Director of Events, has built her career on a variety roles and responsibilities related to professional learning solutions. She has managed multiple product lines, planned and organized professional conferences, and coordinated professional development engagements. In ICG, Erin has found a home that she loves – an organization that aligns with her values of integrity, dignity, and mutual concern. Her favorite parts of her role are interfacing with partners and collaborating with the amazing staff at ICG. Outside of work, Erin loves crossfit, traveling and exploring with her husband, and relishing life’s simple pleasures with her family of five – six if you include the mutt.

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Sasha Strunk

Director of Marketing

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Sasha Strunk, Director of Marketing at ICG, graduated from California State University, Channel Islands where she majored in Psychology. Sasha’s role at ICG allows her to think creatively across multiple areas including building marketing strategies across all channels, including website, email, and social media; partnering with education services providers; and working closely with the design and writing team to produce meaningful marketing collateral. When she’s not crafting ICG campaigns, Sasha enjoys playing ‘beauty salon’ with her daughter, watching Jeopardy with her husband, and going glamping with friends.

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Melissa Terrano

Project Manager

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Melissa Terrano graduated from the University of Southern California in 2004 with a bachelor’s in communication and double minors in spanish and business. She also received her teaching certification from California State University, Bakersfield in 2007. In 2018 she graduated from California State University, San Marcos with her master’s in literacy and in 2020 she graduated from the University of North Carolina, Greensboro with her master’s in school administration. She spent 14 years as a teacher in private schools, public school settings, home school organizations, and public charter schools. Melissa strongly resonates with ICG’s goals of promoting education and excellence in the classroom, and helping people be their best selves, inside and out of the classroom. In her free time, she enjoys being outdoors with her family, running and working out, watching her kids swim, and adventuring around her new home in North Carolina.

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Chase Christensen

Creative Director

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Chase Christensen, Director of Design at ICG, graduated from the University of North Texas in 2018 with a BFA in Communication Design. He began working with ICG shortly after college, feeling fortunate to start his career with a company dedicated to creating a better world. At ICG his responsibilities include creative direction of the global brand and the annual TLC conference,  in addition to designing digital and print products along the way. He works closely with Sasha, Director of Marketing, to position ICG for growth and expand its influence to reach more educators and coaches around the world. When he’s not designing, Chase runs a local skateboard company and travels whenever he can.

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Matthew Kelly

Writer in Residence

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Matthew Kelly, ICG’s Writer in Residence, graduated from the University of Kansas in 2010 with a degree in English Literature. While in college in Lawrence, KS, Matt managed the local used book haunt, The Dusty Bookshelf. After their studies, he and his wife moved to New York City, where he worked for the landmark Strand Bookstore and eventually HarperCollins Publishers. Now back in Kansas City, Matt partners with the ICG marketing and design team to write and edit copy for most ICG materials, including the Radical Learners blog, the ICG Brochure of Services, and the website. He is also a husband to a truly amazing and inspiring woman, ‘parent’ to a tiny, goofy dog named Bruce Wayne, musician, bookworm, and movie buff.

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Jenny Kelley

Executive Assistant

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Jenny Kelley is the administrative assistant to Jim Knight and Emily Malatesta. Having recently retired from a long career in dentistry where she assisted in the clinical care of patients and led and instructed teams, she realized she was most passionate about facilitating the relationship building required to create a thriving and healthy work environment where each professional was empowered to have the most positive impact. Jenny places a high value on life-long learning and is naturally aligned with ICG’s mission. As such, she’s excited to be part of the team and help move the vision forward. A native Kansan, Jenny unapologetically loves the midwest! When she isn’t working, you will find her either spending time in nature, cuddling her dog, Kubo, or hanging out with her amazing friends

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Kristen Ryschon

Administrative Assistant

William Deaton

Warehouse Assistant Manager

Tracey Stokes-Marriott

Manager of Partnerships and Outreach, West U.S.

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Tracey Stokes-Marriott, Manager of Sales and Outreach for the West Coast has built her career in being an elementary educator for 30 years. She taught in the k-8 sector in California in public, private, and charter schools. She also built a remarkably successful career in sales alongside her teaching career, and held the title of Regional Vice President. In her role at ICG, Tracey’s favorite aspect is interacting with the school districts in her territory and working closely with the amazing senior consultants. Outside of work, Tracey loves traveling with her husband, doing yoga, taking walks along the beach, and spending time with her friends and 4 grown kids!

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Nasreen McDowell

Manager of Partnerships and Outreach, East U.S.

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Nasreen McDowell graduated from Indiana University with her Bachelor’s in Education. She also earned her MBA in Educational Leadership from the University of Indianapolis. Her career includes 17 years in education ranging from teacher, to instructional coach, to administrator. Her role at ICG includes building partnerships with teachers, administrators, and school districts to learn how ICG may help further the goal of excellent instruction, every day, in every class, for every student. In her free time, she is traveling with her family and friends or reading on her front porch with her two dogs.

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Brian Sepe

Consultant, Grants