Welcome to Hughes Solutions
Hughes Solutions Logo in two shades of blue with Chain Graphic Shape

Experience and Expertise in Organizational Transformation

Meet the Hughes Solutions Team

Two women in an executive coaching session
"When you get, give. When you learn, teach."
Dr. Maya Angelou

Hughes Solutions

Empowering Leadership Through Experienced Guidance

Hughes Solutions is driven by our firsthand experience leading and consulting in organizations going through diverse challenges, ranging from expansive growth, to turnarounds, to bankruptcies. We can relate to our clients while helping them navigate and thrive amidst major change. We are here to help leaders achieve excellence as they spearhead organizational transformation.

Meet Donna

At Hughes Solutions, we coach leaders who are spearheading, driving, and navigating major transformational change within their organizations.  

Learn why Donna is passionate about leading Hughes Solutions in supporting leaders to reach their highest potential, build high-performing teams, and drive high-performance outcomes for their organizations and personally for themselves.  

Hughes Solutions

From Crisis to Clarity: Donna Hughes’ Legacy of Resilient Leadership

Leading in Times of Economic Uncertainty: The 2008 Banking Crisis

Donna’s corporate leadership journey began at a premier consumer electronics retail company. But the upheaval of the 2008 banking crisis thrust the company into bankruptcy. From a workforce of 30,000, to a select group of 100, including Donna, the organization undertook the delicate task of winding down the business. Donna had to shift her thinking and practices to best manage assets for the protection of unsecured creditors, many of whom were former employees left without severance or benefits.

A New Horizon: Spearheading Global Growth

Donna's next chapter unfolded in a rapidly evolving pharmaceutical company, with an ambitious growth trajectory. She was immersed in a whirlwind of mergers and acquisitions, varied corporate cultures, processes, and people. The company achieved double-digit growth, expanding its reach into 100 countries. Now an officer of a public global company, coaching and mentoring cross-functional integration teams, the challenges were immense and required Donna to lead with greater agility, inclusion and influence.

Balancing Act: Personal Life and Work Life Compete

Donna found herself simultaneously grappling with the demands of her global role and her “sandwich generation” responsibilities of caring for her young son and her aging parents.

Guided to Exceed: The ROI of Executive Coaching

Amid enormous pressures, an executive coach became Donna’s lifeline. This guidance empowered Donna to navigate personal and professional challenges, keeping her values at the forefront of every decision. Her unique combination of strategic foresight, agility and compassionate leadership was strengthened and led to her being hand picked for a Chief Human Resources Officer role.

Serving Leaders: Hughes Solutions Takes Flight

Throughout her leadership journey, Donna remained passionate about guiding, mentoring and coaching others. Many sought her wisdom in times of professional strife. With over 25 years of leadership experience and formal coaching training, in 2022, Donna embraced her true vocation and launched Hughes Solutions. This venture is a testament to her belief in the transformative power of coaching.

Since inception, Hughes Solutions has supported 800+ leaders with one-on-one coaching, workshops, and inspiring presentations.

Hughes Solutions Philosophy

"At Hughes Solutions, we believe leadership is an act of service and a gift to be cultivated. We coach leaders to advance their skills so that they can in turn, invest in their teams and positively shape their organizations and their communities." – Donna Hughes

Meet Our Team

Meet Members of Our Accomplished Team

Below are bios showcasing some members of the Hughes Solutions team. These individuals bring diverse expertise and invaluable contributions to our organization.

Jill Gillard, MS, PCC

Executive and Leadership Coach

With over two decades of experience in management consulting and executive coaching across diverse industries such as pharmaceuticals, finance, biotech, and higher education, Jill possesses a wealth of expertise. Her career journey—from international marketing and publishing to acclaimed scientist and then to management consultant and coach—equips her with a unique understanding and empathy for clients navigating their individual career paths. Jill partners with established leaders to help them achieve their goals by fostering awareness, identifying challenges and opportunities, addressing blind spots, and realigning with their values. Jill has earned the Professional Certified Coach (PCC) credential from the International Coaching Federation (ICF), and she serves as an instructor in the Heidrick & Struggles led Leadership Coaching for Organizational Performance program at American, Rutgers, and North Carolina State Universities. Additionally, Jill contributes to social system change by coaching with the ICF Foundation, offering pro bono coaching services.

Wayne Cafran, MS, ACC

Executive and Leadership Coach

Wayne is an experienced executive coach working with professionals at all levels on career development and leadership skills. Wayne’s approach uses active listening, curiosity, humility, and intuition to identify and uncover the roadblocks or beliefs that can hinder executives from achieving their goals. He is a Certified Leadership Coach through the Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching (iPEC) and has earned an Associate Certified Coach (ACC) credential from the International Coaching Federation (ICF). Previously, Wayne was a lead KPMG Partner advising healthcare clients. Over the span of his career, Wayne served as a trusted advisor to C-suite leaders and board members throughout an era of complexity and change including mergers and acquisitions, consolidation, digital transformation, and regulatory compliance.

Carol Kelley, MS

Executive and Leadership Coach

Carol is an accomplished executive coach with three decades of experience working with Fortune 500 corporations and pharmaceutical, healthcare, telecommunications, global financial, and retail industries. Her expertise prepares executives to be “high-impact, transformative leaders,” particularly those facing complex change and integration issues. Carol views organizations as “human systems” and partners with executives as a pragmatic problem-solver, providing customized solutions that identify and address the “root cause” of organizational change issues. She is a graduate of Resero, an International Coaching Federation (ICF) accredited coaching program.

Brenda Vesey, MS, ACC

Executive and Leadership Coach

Brenda has 20+ years of experience developing others while in senior human resources positions in the life sciences and retail industries and as a Chief People Officer with a small-cap pharmaceutical company. Brenda has helped businesses of various sizes and lifecycles, including startup, growth mode, transformation, and wind-down. Brenda is an authentic, supportive, and highly communicative coach dedicated to empowering people and helping business leaders find their voices. Brenda is a credentialed Associate Certified Coach (ACC) with the International Coaching Federation (ICF) and is Six Sigma Green Belt certified.

Client Examples: Our Industry Expertise

Here is a glimpse into some of our clientele. Our coaches’ backgrounds and coaching experience span various sectors, including healthcare, life sciences, pharmaceuticals, retail, finance, technology, higher education, law practices, and human services. We are dedicated to delivering specialized coaching solutions tailored to the distinctive needs of each leader to lead, adapt and thrive personally and in their industry.
Get started with hughes solutions

Ready to Elevate your Leadership?

Book your call today.

Scroll to Top