What do you call someone who supports others by checking in with them when they're trying to achieve a goal? Not a sponsor.

  • 2
    Mentor? Coach, counsel, pilot, shepherd, tutor?
    – Hot Licks
    Jul 25 '15 at 22:05
  • 2
    How is 'checking in with somebody' supporting them? If you could make that clear, you might get better answers. Jul 25 '15 at 22:35
  • 1
    I'm surprised no one has mentioned the most obvious choice yet: supporter. Jul 26 '15 at 12:37
  • A phrase used for this is accountability partner - reference. Jul 27 '15 at 5:25

advocate, ad·vo·cate \ˈad-və-kət, -ˌkāt\ noun –MW

3: one that supports or promotes the interests of another

If my lab partner wasn't such a good advocate, I'd have failed physics.

  • 2
    Is it? Can you justify that assertion? An advocate is usually someone who speaks up for someone or something else (and supports them in that sense).
    – Andrew Leach
    Jul 25 '15 at 22:23
  • 1
    An even better example is what I've done to help this new user by showing them the ropes through editing.
    – Mazura
    Jul 25 '15 at 23:24

Are you looking for "patron"?

  • One that supports, protects, or champions someone or something, such as an institution, event, or cause; a benefactor: a patron of the arts. TFD


  • "Lorenzo De Medici is said to have been a patron of the arts."

  • "John has found a patron in Dr. Cole."


I think "coach" may fit here. Coaching has by nature a 'caring' and personal quality to it. The coach or person checking-in must be somehow invested in the other persons success. Their success is the coach's success. Being willing to be supportive in this way (with regular check-ins) requires somewhat of a parental outlook. They agree to be caring enough to be a (however) constant in that persons life. This requires commitment from both the coach and the coached, thus the inevitable personal aspect of the relationship.

The way I find "just the right word" to use is, I start with whatever word I first think of, even if I know it's the wrong one (like 'sponsor'). I use either Thesaurus or dictionary to find its synonyms. And I just go from there, checking out the words and definitions and as I get closer, the context in which they are used until I'm satisfied I have the right word to express my thought. Good luck

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.