13. Katharine Lewis of mbaMission
Spending two years reading and evaluating MBA applications for the Stanford GSB inspired Katharine Lewis to coach business school applicants on her own for a time before joining mbaMission in 2012 as a senior consultant. With 12 MBAs from six schools in her family, she passionately believes that business school provides essential leadership training for any career. After graduating summa cum laude from Yale, Katharine earned her JD and MBA (with distinction) from Harvard. She then joined McKinsey & Company, where she completed consulting projects for finance, forest products, retail, and nonprofit clients, and designed and established two business-government advocacy groups. After reluctantly declining a teaching offer from HBS, Katharine practiced law with Morrison & Foerster before switching her focus to education and nonprofit consulting.
Five-Star Review Excerpt: “Katy believed in me and helped me believe in myself. From day 1, she was so confident in me and my story. I was a bit doubtful in getting into top MBA schools, because of my average GMAT score. She boosted my confidence in every call, in every email we exchanged. She is very fast in responding to any of the questions. The brainstorming session with her is extremely helpful. I advise everyone to put in all your soul, put in all the stories and work really hard to understand what’s your story and what you want to do. This will help Katy to better understand what drives you in life, and then Katy will surely transform your small anecdotes to something much bigger and impactful. I love the way she asked me to write down all my prompts/thoughts without paying attention to the words limits in the essays (which was, by the way, too much work for her). With this activity, she could understand the way I want to approach my essay. She pushed me hard all the time to brainstorm in each and every part of my essay where I thought, things were missing. With her support and encouragement, I came out with such a creative essay, which made me believe that someday, I could be an author of a bestseller. Because of Katy, I got into 2 prestigious schools and with scholarships in both the schools.” — Class of 2021 admit
15. Kate Richardson of mbaMission
In her five years as an MBA admissions consultant for mbaMission since 2014, Richardson has advised more than 200 applicants to top MBA programs. A Booth MBA, with a bachelor’s in psych from the University of Illinois, she got early experience in the business, working as an admissions fellow at Booth as a student, reading applications and doing on-campus interviews with candidates from 2006 to 2008. After earning her MBA, she worked for several years in management consulting at Axiom Consulting Partners, a boutique strategy execution firm. Originally from the Chicago area and having spent most of her professional career in Washington, D.C., Richardson now does her consulting work from Columbia, South Carolina. This is Richardson’s second appearance on our top list.
Five-Star Review Excerpt: “I started working pretty late on my applications (2 months before the deadline) so I wanted a professional to guide me through the process. That’s when I engaged Kate based on the recommendation of a friend who had worked with her in the past. I bought a one school package for Booth from mbaMission. Kate was super-helpful in helping me craft the story and she provided honest feedback to weed out any irrelevant information in my essays. As the deadline drew closer, she even reverted with her comments on my essays within a few hours to save time. This speaks volumes about her commitment to my success. Unfortunately, Booth did not work out but I got into Columbia. I would like to attribute the success to Kate as I built upon my work with her while she acted as a sounding board for some of my ideas for other applications. So, if you are looking for a professional consultant who would make sure that you do the job right then I would highly recommend you to work with Kate.” — Class of 2021 admit