About Us

Our History

Since our founding in 1991, we have successfully worked across four decades using a cross-generational approach in the programs and consulting we provide. We have partnered with over 200 clients across the United States and with corporate clients with offices throughout the world. Our breadth of experience makes the Institute for Executive Development distinctly qualified to deliver a full spectrum of Leadership Development, Executive Coaching, and Strategic Planning services needed by 21st century leaders. We respect and value what we’ve learned from employees, and we know their insights and perspectives are more critical to leadership success than at any time in the history of organizations. However, it’s how that information is gathered, organized, and presented that makes the difference.

Our offices are in Las Vegas, Nevada, where our Chavez family roots go back nearly a century. As a recognized “founding family of Las Vegas,” we were raised to respect traditions, core values and diversity, and to embrace change which has been a foundation of our community. These values and traditions inform our team and our processes, positioning IED as a leader in our field.

Our Team

Dr. Rick Culley

President, Institute for Executive Development

As president and founder of the Institute for Executive Development (IED), Rick Culley has more than 30 years of experience as a corporate executive, university professor, and management consultant. In 1991, he established IED in Las Vegas, Nevada to provide consulting services in Leadership Development, Strategic Planning and Executive Coaching.

Rick has extensive experience in the public, private, and non-profit sectors, working with a diverse group of clients such as the Aria Hotel & Resort, AT&T, Bellagio, BlueShield of California, Booz-Allen Hamilton, Citibank, City of Las Vegas, Clark County Nevada, City of Henderson Police Department, the FBI, Fertitta Entertainment / Station Casinos, Hitachi, Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, LAPD, MGM Resorts International, Merrill Lynch, Peat Marwick, Quicklogic, the Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Culture Heritage, Smith Center for Performing Arts, University of California, Berkley, UNLV, the U.S. Postal Service, and Wynn Resorts.

Prior to starting IED, Rick was Director of Executive Management Development at the New York Stock Exchange. Previously, he worked at the World Trade Center for the Port Authority of New York & New Jersey as the Executive Development Administrator.

As an Adjunct Professor at the Price School of Public Policy, University of Southern California (USC), Rick teaches Leadership in the Executive Program (EML), as well as a graduate course in Strategic Planning. He has lectured at Columbia University and the New School for Social Research. Rick was an Adjunct Associate Professor at New York University for eight years teaching courses in Leadership, Policy, and Administration. He was the recipient of the Teaching Excellence Award.

Rick Culley was born and raised in Las Vegas, Nevada where he currently lives with his wife, Laura, the Associate Dean for Community Engagement at the UNLV School of Medicine. Over the years Rick has been active in the Las Vegas Community volunteering with and supporting a wide range of organizations including the Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce Leadership Las Vegas Program and the Paul E. Culley Elementary School. Rick and Laura have three sons: Paul, Luke, and Alex.

Rick received a master’s and a Ph.D. in Public Administration and Policy Analysis from the University of Southern California. His undergraduate degree is in Political Science / Business Administration from California State University, Long Beach.

Alex Culley

Executive Director, Institute for Executive Development

Alex Culley is the Executive Director of the Institute for Executive Development, responsible for the day-to-day operations of the firm since his promotion in December 2021. Alex joined IED in July of 2017 after working in the field of market research and consumer insights. His areas of expertise include applied research, group facilitation, digital communication, and leading a multi-generational and diverse workforce.

At 30, Alex is one of the youngest certified Executive Coaches and Leadership consultants in the country. He is certified in Stakeholder Centered Coaching®, the top ranked coaching methodology pioneered by the # 1 executive coach Marshall Goldsmith. Jim Kouzes, one of the most authoritative voices on leadership, describes Alex as “thoughtful and diligent, combining creative problem-solving, rapid-response agility, and adept use of technology to enhance leadership development experiences.”

From a young age, Alex recognized a natural connection to people and a strong desire to help others. He graduated from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas with a degree in psychology and received a master’s degree in Applied Psychology from the University of Southern California. Following graduation, Alex worked as a consumer insights researcher, before transitioning to Leadership and Organizational Development consulting. He returned to Las Vegas in the summer of 2017 and began working for the Institute for Executive Development as Director, consulting for clients in the public, private, and non-profit sectors. As the COVID-19 pandemic forced events online, Alex led the major transformation of IED, core programs and services into interactive virtual experiences. Working with multi-generational clients across sectors and industries, Alex developed innovative, human-centered events, empowering people with varying levels of digital skill to engage and benefit from computer-based training.

Alex is active in the Las Vegas and UNLV communities. He served as President of the UNLV College of Liberal Arts Alumni chapter and as a Director on the UNLV Alumni Association Board from 2018-2021. Alex regularly mentors high school students, college students, and recent University graduates in the areas of career counseling, goal setting, and personal development. He lives in Las Vegas with his wife Katie, who was his high school sweetheart, and their Pomeranian named Butters.

Clients and Testimonials

Meet our clients and learn more about why they chose to partner with IED to help their organizations grow stronger by investing in Leadership Development, Executive Coaching, and Strategic Planning.

I have had the pleasure of working with Alex Culley for over a decade on client engagements and professional conferences. Alex is thoughtful and diligent in his work, and he combines creative problem-solving with determination and grit particularly in challenging situations that require agility and rapid-response. He is also an authentic and genuine leader, driven by a continuous desire to learn and grow. These competencies are especially apparent in watching him adeptly use technology to enhance leadership development experiences. Alex's style is down-to-earth, straight-forward, and engaging. He avoids the jargon and arrogance that can undercut the effectiveness of some professionals. And beyond his professional capabilities, Alex is warm and gracious and very easy to work with.

Jim Kouzes, Author of the bestselling book “The Leadership Challenge”

I've known and worked with Alex in a large, potentially challenging group setting over several years, where he's played a key role in helping to plan and facilitate the group's work. I can report that Alex steps up and leads--he does the right thing in the right way. He combines astute observation with thoughtful questions to gain insight about individual and organizational behavior. In other words, he's a quick study who gets the job done. It's a great pleasure to work with Alex, and I recommend him highly for both his leadership and organizational skills.

John Alexander, President at Leadership Horizons, Inc.

Hiring Rick Culley as our consultant and executive coach was one of the best decisions I’ve made in my career.

Cindy Ortega, Senior Vice President and Chief Sustainability Officer (Fmr.), MGM Resorts International, 2007 - 2019

Rick Culley is an outstanding designer of Leadership programs and a brilliant facilitator. He is especially skilled at using humor to engage participants in profound reflection and learning

Sally Helgelsen, Author
How Women Rise, Rising Together: How We Can Bridge Divides and Create a More Inclusive Workplace

Alex combines a distinct ability to see the big picture while also having a strong command of details, logistics, and operations-- he does it in a way that's inspiring and encouraging. His enthusiasm and attitude are contagious. He uplifts and encourages those around him while maintaining focus and driving towards the goals or objectives at hand, bringing a level of professionalism/preparedness that makes the difference between good and great!

Nwaka Onwusa, Vice President and Chief Curator at Rock & Roll Hall of Fame

Rick is a highly effective executive coach who tells you what you need to hear, not just what you want to hear. He asks the hard questions from day one and provides excellent guidance and support along the way. He’s a catalyst for significant personal and professional growth who helped me believe in myself more by unlocking a boldness and sense of purpose that I previously avoided.

Michael Gebhart, Chief Financial Officer, Highlands Oncology Group

Rick and Alex Culley were a great combination who helped me as executive coaches. Rick provides the seasoned insights of a long distinguished career. Alex’s perspective is fresh, informative, and always makes you think of something useful which you never thought of before. They truly cared about my success.

David Allazetta, Arizona Market President, NovumHealth

I’ve known and worked with Rick and Alex Culley for almost 20 years as they have provided leadership development and training for my teams of highly experienced managers and supervisors. Their development programs are impactful, effective, and give people new techniques they could apply immediately. Their programs are great in a group setting or for individual professional development and coaching. I’d recommend them to anyone looking to strengthen their team or improve their leadership skillset.

Todd Fasulo, Vice President Security, Corp. Investigations and Crisis Management, Wynn Lass Vegas and Encore

Working with Rick and Alex Culley was transformational for both my team and myself. Their coaching provided insightful, timely guidance and helped me refine key skills. Their work has been critical to my development as a leader and a person.

Michael Atwood Mason, CEO and Executive Director, President Lincoln’s Cottage and former Director of the Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage.

Rick has an extra side or sixth sense when it comes to leadership development. He has an ability to overcome resistance and build trust with the most hardened of executives or leadership teams. He provides great insight and distinct perspectives that get people to open up and look at things they need to do or do differently. He has an ability to bring out the best in people.

Grant Ashley, Grant Ashley, CPA, CGMA, Vice President, Global Security and Aviation (retired)

Dr. Rick Culley is an exceptional executive coach. I have known Rick for over 30 years. He has made a very positive difference in my life. At a period where I was in my ‘comfort zone’ – doing great work, but not becoming the person that I could become – Rick provided me with invaluable coaching that changed the direction of my career. Both my life and my professional career are so much better because of the help that I have received from Rick!

Marshall Goldsmith, Thinkers 50 Hall of Fame, #1 Leadership Thinker, #1 NYT Bestselling Author.

“Get more comfortable being uncomfortable if you’re going  to grow and develop as a leader.”

“Are you driving yourself focusing out the windshield or looking through the rearview mirror?”
“Don’t let the worst behaviors in others bring out the worst behaviors in you.”
“What you need to hear the most, you often want to hear the least.”
“Those leaders who constantly play “keep up and catch-up” seldom, if ever, get caught up.”
“If you don’t have clear goals, you tend to spend most of your time focused on problems and obstacles.”