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Job loss turns into spiritual calling

Veteran teacher becomes certified Christian life-coach, after being laid off in the recession

Posted: March 24, 2012 1:55 a.m.
Updated: March 24, 2012 1:55 a.m.

Campbell-Harley in her home office.

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Before moving to Santa Clarita, Shelly Campbell-Harley held a career as a teacher for nearly 20 years.

She moved to the local community in 2008 to teach, but the economic recession changed her plans and she was left without a job.

That’s when Campbell-Harley turned to God for guidance in her life. She began to pray and sought out other jobs, but nothing seemed to pan out. She then began to feel the calling to become a certified life coach. She now runs a locally based business, The Oaks Coaching Ministries, to benefit the lives of others.

Opening a window

“Doors seemed to just be shutting for me,” Campbell-Harley said. “I did a lot of praying and asked God, ‘What do you have for
me Lord?”

That’s when she says God put it on her heart to use her skills as a teacher to continue to touch lives in another way. Her hope was to use her education and skills to reach people.

Although Campbell-Harley had her master’s degree in education, she returned to school at the Professional Christian Coaching and
Counseling Academy and was certified last summer. She then began to build her business, The Oak Coaching Ministries, as a certified Christian life coach.

She decided to focus on helping others improve their lives. Her business offers leadership training seminars, workshops, speaking engagements and personal coaching for business professionals and families.

Touching lives

Campbell-Harley bases her coaching on eight qualities of leadership she feels will help people to be better leaders and live fuller lives. Just a few of them include taking initiative, positive problem solving, effective communication and goal setting.

Jo Wrhel, 38, was struggling with her decision to re-enter the workforce after 10 years as a stay at home mom when she turned to

The Oak Coaching Ministries and Campbell-Harley for guidance. She had met her through a class at church where participants introduced themselves and spoke about what they do for a living.

That is where Wrhel knew she could use Campbell-Harley’s help. Wrhel said she was stressed out about becoming an insurance agent and the upcoming state exam licensing process and decided to reach out to her for coaching.

“She helped me to stay on track and reminded me that through Christ all things are possible,” Wrhel said. “She is incredibly insightful, very empathetic and a great listener.”

Campbell-Harley offers coaching and motivation by basing it on Christian Biblical principles and Bible verses. She is also working on a book, “Legacy of Leadership,” an in depth look into the eight qualities of leadership, which will be out in July.

“I’m used to teaching people,” she said. “Now it’s time for another phase. It’s a new outlet and way to reach other people.”

Campbell-Harley guides families who need help with communication, while she coaches businesses that need new ways to help create more cohesive management teams and become better managers.

“God hasn’t given me the goal to become rich,” she said. “It is more like the goal to reach a lot of people. I want to help them find balance in their lives, give them direction that will lead them to God and have more peace and hope.”

Contact Shelly Campbell-Harley at The Oak Coaching Ministries at or call 661-210-8052.


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