President, OnwardU Professional meeting facilitator, workshop leader and communications consultant, Deborah Buks has worked with thousands of professionals to improve the effectiveness of their leadership, management and communications skills. Deborah founded her communications firm, Ward, in 1990, and launched the sister company OnwardU in 2013 to focus on the predecessor firm’s successful facilitation and workshop practice. Respected and trusted to provide meaningful counsel and coaching to C-level executives and the employees who have accountability to them, Deborah works with highly accomplished individuals to take their skills to the next level. She offers a variety of workshops, produces custom programs for clients’ unique needs, and serves as faculty for client’s existing corporate curriculum as needed. As an entrepreneur and long-time business owner whose firm is regarded among its peers as one of the best-managed in the country, Deborah views every business issue as a communication issue at its core, and helps managers improve their operational and financial results by improving their ability to lead others toward strategic business outcomes. In her 30+-year career, she has worked in numerous industries ranging from traditional and alternative energy to industrial/manufacturing and real estate/construction to professional services, healthcare, technology and consumer products. She is a professionally trained facilitator and past Texas Liaison for the International Association of Facilitators, of which she is a member. In addition, she currently holds board positions on Aid to Victims of Domestic Abuse, Congregation Beth Israel, The University of Texas Moody College of Communications Dean’s Advisory Council and SARC, a non-profit of leading oncologists dedicated to finding a cure for Sarcoma, a rare cancer of which she is a survivor. Deborah also has served on the boards of Sarcoma Foundation of America, KUHT-TV and numerous professional associations. Before founding her communications firm, Deborah's experience included tenure as a vice president in the Houston office of Hill and Knowlton, then the world’s largest public affairs firm. She also managed the public relations division of one of Houston's leading creative advertising agencies, and prior worked on leading international brands at Burson-Marsteller and Vollmer Public Relations.