As a founder and principal at SDR Ventures, a Denver-based investment banking firm, Chris works closely with clients executing mergers and acquisitions, securing equity and debt financing and implementing strategic initiatives aimed at maximizing shareholder value. He has 25 years of experience in strategic and transaction advisory services along with the Series 24, 62, 63 and 79 securities licenses.
Chris is also a founding partner at Coulton Creek Capital and BlackBook, Inc.®
Chris is a Vistage member and an advisor to Vistage International forums and serves as an Executive Board Member with the Denver Area Council for the Boy Scouts of America. He is a CPA and started his career at Deloitte & Touche after graduating from the University of Illinois.
Chris lives in Denver with his wife and triplets and is working towards climbing the last nine to finish all 54 of the 14,000 foot mountains in Colorado.
Julie Reiskin is the executive director of the Colorado Cross-Disability Coalition (CCDC). CCDC advocates for social justice for people with all types of disabilities.
CCDC is a leading disability rights organization whose unique model of blending legal and non-attorney advocacy has achieved results for thousands of Coloradans with disabilities. With a motto of Nothing About Us Without Us Ever, CCDC has led the way in citizen or client engagement and CCDC trained advocates permeate the Colorado public policy arena. CCDC and Ms. Reiskin assist other organizations with assuring real and meaningful participation by clients at all levels.
Through CCDC and the disability community, Ms. Reiskin has gained expertise on nonprofit accountability and best practices, publicly funded long-term community based services, disability rights law, public benefits and the intersectionality of systemic and individual advocacy. Ms. Reiskin has proposed and helped to implement many solutions to create a sustainable and client friendly Medicaid program such as the consumer direction as a delivery model, acted as a respected advocate for individuals and has trained many others in health advocacy and health policy. Prior to becoming the Executive Director for CCDC in 1996, Ms. Reiskin served as the organization's policy analyst.
In 2010, Ms. Reiskin was appointed by President Obama to serve on the Board of Directors of the Legal Services Corporation as the client representative.
Ms. Reiskin provides consulting with organizations seeking to improve, expand or enhance their ability to effectively practice real and meaningful client/constituent engagement at all levels of the organization. She also helps organizations develop disability cultural competence.
Ms. Reiskin moved to Colorado from Connecticut in 1994. In Connecticut, she was a partner in a consulting firm, specializing in diversity issues throughout Southern New England. She also had a private psychotherapy practice.
Previous work includes, but is not limited to, several positions working with "hard to serve" youth and positive youth development, AIDS/HIV Education, and grassroots community organizing. Ms. Reiskin has taught extensively in the areas of disability rights, disability culture and disability policy, along with other areas related to diversity in human services.
Ms. Reiskin received her Masters in Social Work from the University of Connecticut, with a major in community organizing in 1989. She obtained a B.S. in Women's Studies from the University of Connecticut in 1985. She lives in Denver with her partner of more than 20 years and has two adult stepsons, who both make her very proud.
Shaun has spent his career cultivating teams to do amazing things. He cultivated a team at YMCA Camp Ockanickon to develop and deliver the highest quality experiential education programs. Today, he leads the team at iSupportU to provide the highest quality IT support and consulting.
Through all of these endeavors, learning has been a common theme. In order to truly know 'how to learn', he finished a Masters in Education to prepare him to teach. A thirst for understanding brought him to the field of technology. It was clear that the tool of tech can act as a powerful catalyst to learning and growth for people of all ages.
While teaching, one of the most rewarding experiences was seeing how empowered the teachers had become when they learned to fully harness the power of technology in their teaching. This experience was the inspiration behind starting iSupportU as a company. Shaun wanted to see that same empowerment in individuals and businesses. Technology should make life better and bring people together. That is the core goal of iSupportU.
The company has grown by an average of 200% per year since opening. This has resulted in being a top five fastest growing company in Boulder and Broomfield Counties in 2013, 2014 and 2015. The growth has been the result of carefully planned and implemented strategies of growth by cultivating relationships with existing clients and providing the highest quality of service.
In 2014, iSupportU sold off its web department to another firm, purchased a commercial building and discontinued doing repair work for residential customers.
iSupportU gained B Corp status in 2015. This formally made clear to the world the level of commitment the company has to social and environmental responsibility.
Shaun also enjoys doing cart wheels around the office without warning. Play is key.
Lynn S. Evans, CFP® is a national leader in the financial planning industry, successful author, speaker, host of a top-ranked podcast, and has a strong record of accomplishment as CEO of financial planning and wealth advisory companies, including her latest venture, Women of Substance LLC. She has developed several groundbreaking presentations on the relationship between women and money.
Her presentations encourage participants to look into their past for clues on what they were taught about money and how that colors how they relate to money as adult women, how to break those bonds, and how to have a happy, positive relationship with money.
In her recent book, “Power of the Purse: Fear Free Finances for Baby Boomer Women”, Lynn addressed what she views as the financial knowledge gap of Baby Boomer women where traditional stereotypes are being re-examined and exciting new opportunities await on the horizon. Viewing divorce, retirement, and widowhood not as a time of withdrawal and fear, but gearing up for new challenges and rewards, Lynn helps women prepare financially — and emotionally — for these significant transitions.
Lynn earned her BA from Cedar Crest College in Allentown, Pennsylvania. She’s held the CFP® mark of distinction for more than 25 years. Lynn is active in her community and has held leadership positions in a variety of civic organizations including the Women’s Resource Center of Scranton, which she co-founded, Maternal and Family Health Services, charter member of the NE PA Chapter of the National Association of Women Business Owners, Cedar Crest College’s Alumnae Association, and the President’s Advisory Board of Keystone College, Factoryville, Pennsylvania.
Lynn and her husband, Patrick, enjoy spending family time with their son, Tyler, and boating on Lake Wallenpaupack in Pennsylvania’s Pocono Mountains.
For his entire career, Alan has been involved in all aspects of point-of-purchase advertising from design to delivery.
He co-founded Data Display Corporation in 1980. Later he acquired a small neon company as a division and renamed it Neon Glassworks. Data Display was sold in the mid 1980s and Neon Glassworks was renamed Zeon Corporation to better reflect the wide range of products and services offered beyond neon.
Along the way, the company constantly changed to meet market needs and Alan’s own desire to bring the best brand identity products into the market. What started as a single designer turning company logos into neon signs has become a full design staff that utilizes a broad range of technologies including neon, LED, fluorescent, non-illuminated, and products that include signs, display racks, chalk boards and many others. Zeon was also the first company to build Point-of-Purchase displays out of reclaimed Colorado beetle kill pine. Zeon’s materials bag of tricks also includes reclaimed snow fencing, reclaimed cedar fencing and distressed corrugated.
In July, 2008, he bought out his co-founding partner and now he is the sole owner of Zeon. Alan and his creative staff, combined with many other employees, develop unique POP concepts using traditional and non-traditional materials.
Zeon works with companies in a variety of industries including craft brewers, furniture, consumer products, outdoor equipment, action sports, music, automotive and wireless communications.
Max Rogers is a veteran entrepreneur and leader with a track record of growing successful businesses. His business philosophy is deeply rooted in honesty, transparency, providing valued and excellent service while enabling employees to enjoy rewarding careers.
As the President of AddOns, Inc., Max is responsible for scheduling, directing, coordinating and supervising the company so that AddOns, Inc. may service customers under the optimum conditions of productivity, efficiency, cost effectiveness and ease of operations.
Max took partial ownership of AddOns, Inc. in 2003 after operating his own functional consulting group successfully for four years. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Wyoming.
Lloyd Lewis is president and CEO of Arc Thrift Stores. Arc has 24 stores and 15 donation stations in Colorado. Arc provide advocacy for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, and is one of the largest employers of individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities in the state of Colorado.
Lewis’ role includes oversight and management of Arc’s retail stores, corporate and support operations, and a staff of over 1,500 employees. Under Lewis’ tenure, revenue has grown from $30 million to $75 million annually, and earned income from $2 million to $10 million annually.
Lewis currently serves as board chair of the Colorado Cross Disability Coalition and of the Atlantis Community Foundation.
At Arc, Lewis is instrumental in forging relationships with communities of color, including Mi Casa Resource Center, the Latina Chamber of Denver, as well as other community organizations including the Mayor’s Road Home project. He received the Civil Rights Award from NewsEd Corporation for his work with challenged communities in 2008. He is also the recipient of an award as one of Denver’s “unsung heroes” in celebration of Denver’s 150th anniversary in 2009, and Lewis and Arc were named 2010 “Change Maker” for the City of Denver Change Maker program sponsored by Ashoka and the City of Denver.
Robin Autorino is an award winning chocolatier and has been named by Dessert Professional as one of the Top Ten Chocolatiers in North America in 2013.
Becoming a chocolatier was a very unlikely outcome for Robin from the very beginning. As early as she can remember, she had been allergic to chocolate and was not able to enjoy it as a child or during most of her adult life.
Grown up and in search of adventure, Robin joined the Navy to see the world. Having been stationed in Spain, Guam, Australia and many other locales throughout her Naval career, she was able to call many amazing places home.
Living overseas far from family, however, can be difficult for a single mom; especially during the holidays. Robin found family amongst friends during her travels and often hosted holiday dinner parties for the other sailors and their families. To keep her young son from getting underfoot while she cooked and baked for gatherings, she had him dip pretzels in chocolate as gifts for the guests.
After fourteen years of service, Robin left the Navy and settled in Northern Virginia. Robin worked for a string of technology companies during the height of the Internet boom; but while it paid the bills, it certainly wasn't a passion.
As time passed, her son grew up and on with his life. Robin became restless and embarked on a search for her next adventure. That search led to a move to Boulder, Colorado where she made the decision to transition from technology professional to professional chef.
Robin landed at a local culinary school where she studied classic French cooking techniques using locally produced, seasonally available ingredients. Her last month of culinary coursework was spent in Avignon, France where she had the honor of studying with master chefs from Michelin-starred restaurants and working at a local pâtisserie. Robin's experience at the pâtisserie inspired her to become a pastry chef.
Robin was required to taste everything she made at the pâtisserie, including all of the items made with chocolate. Not about to make excuses about allergies to a French pastry chef, Robin tasted the chocolate and waited for the adverse reaction. By luck or fate, the expected reaction never came and Robin's passion for chocolate began.
As it turns out, Robin is still allergic to some chocolate. The discovery was made upon returning from France when she purchased a mass market chocolate bar. After a single bite, she had an immediate reaction. To add insult to injury, the flavor did not agree with her either. The difference may simply have been in how the chocolate was made, either in the ingredients or the process.
Over the next several years Robin worked to develop her craft in the pastry kitchens of a number of landmark restaurants and hotels. Among these are Flagstaff House and Dushanbe Tea House in Boulder as well as The Brown Palace Hotel in Denver. During this time she also interned at Tru in Chicago.
In her spare time, Robin began to make molded chocolates for friends and family, experimenting with flavors and artistry. Just before Valentine's Day in 2008, a local florist needed chocolates and asked Robin to provide them. She jumped at the opportunity to transform from chocolate enthusiast to chocolate entrepreneur. And thus, Robin Chocolates was born.
On that first Valentine's Day Robins chocolates were pretty good. Since then Robin has continued to work towards perfecting her craft, studying with some of the top chocolatiers in North America and Europe. These days her chocolates not only win awards, they have a loyal and growing following.
There are many chocolates out in the market that are beautiful to look at but disappointing to taste. Robin combines artistry and flavor to create little masterpieces that taste as good as they look. Through her chocolates, Robin has found a way to make people smile, which makes Robin very happy indeed.
Based just south of Denver in Centennial, Colorado, The Kitchen Showcase has been serving Colorado homeowners, builders, and interior designers for nearly 30 years. Jason’s Father, Doug Pfaff started the business in 1983 and after graduating from MidAmerica Nazarene University, Jason Pfaff joined the family business. He has been with the company for 10 years now.
Kendra Prospero is CEO & Founder of Turning the Corner LLC, a Boulder-based career coaching, recruiting, and business cultivation services organization helping job seekers and companies transform the way they think about work.
For job seekers, she helps them find work they love. From resume writing to career coaching, and job search essentials, she and her team accelerate the job search process. Kendra has spent years counseling people on their careers, giving resume advice and bringing talented people together. She has helped many people land great positions in fields they are passionate about and are thriving in. With her diverse background, she has a deep understanding of the different types of jobs and personalities that are out there and what makes that perfect fit.
For companies, Kendra and her team work with executives and Human Resource professionals helping them with the development, launch, and management of effective talent management, employee engagement, visioning & strategic planning, and leadership training. Turning the Corner has worked with numerous companies helping them find top talent and develop their organization for success.
Scott Baker is Mill Operations Officer for Icebox Knitting, LLC. Scott manages the daily office duties, procurement of raw materials, sales and logistics. Design Innovation is one of his favorite tasks, but the work flow calendar usually takes him away from the drawing board and puts him behind the keyboard. He began his entrepreneur career at the age of ten in Boulder, Colorado and finished his undergraduate work 1992 with a degree in Urban and Regional Planning with in emphasis in database management and a minor in Mexican-American studies from University of Colorado at Greeley. Using the models of city planning, Scott has applied his skills to running a factory. From the way people park their cars in the lot, placement of recycle bins, to storage of raw materials, the ebb and flow of the factory is optimized by his listening and providing employees the tools they need to succeed.
His love of outdoors and enjoyment of re-purposing objects brought him to Icebox Knitting in 2006. Scott assisted in implementing the Xob Upcycle hats and accessories, which has been well received in the USA and Japan.
It is difficult to find Scott sitting at home. He loves to take his wife and two boys on outdoor adventures, which includes biking, snowboarding, mountain climbing and camping. Scott is committed to his community and has been an active volunteer for Habitat for Humanity since 1998.
Matt joined Red Idea LLC in 2010 and is a Partner, General Manager, and Food & Beverage Consulting Practice Director.
Matt was named a 2016 40 Under Forty honoree by BizWest Media as one of the top young professionals in Boulder and Broomfield counties. 40 Under Forty honorees are selected as the best and brightest emerging leaders making a difference in their companies, industries and communities.
Matt earned his MBA with a focus in Entrepreneurship at the University of Colorado at Boulder, and a B.A. in Economics from Emory University.
Sam Allen is an Executive Coach based in Boulder, CO. As a Chair with Vistage International, the worlds leading chief executive membership organization, he facilitates peer groups and coaches CEOs and Business Owners to increase their effectiveness and enhance their lives.
Sam is an experienced CEO. He was International President for The Sports Authority, and managed the creation of a subsidiary in Canada and a joint venture company in Japan, which quickly grew to eighteen stores and $200 million in sales. Before, he was President and CEO of a regional chain of sporting goods stores in Southern California, Sport Chalet. While under his leadership, sales increased from $23 million to $135 million, and he took the Company public. During this time, Sam was a Vistage member for seven years. Before becoming a retail executive, Sam was a business consultant with the accounting firm, Ernst & Whinney, where he received his CPA certification. Education: Master of Business Administration, University of Southern California, and Bachelor of Arts, Pomona College.
Jacqueline Claudia, CEO and Co-Founder of LoveTheWild, is a lifelong fish nerd who thought she was going to be a marine biologist when she grew up. Instead, after graduating from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania and the Darden School of the University of Virginia, she spent 15 years working in corporate strategy and innovation before finding her way back to fish. She fell in love with the potential for sustainable aquaculture while working on the Velella Project. She founded LoveTheWild to de-demonize great farmed fish, make it easier for people to cook great fish at home, and is passionately building a company that has a real shot at saving the world.
Christy Brouker came from a background in tech start-ups and food/natural products writing. The next natural step for Christy was, of course, fish. With a love of all things water, serious "get things done" chops, and a drive to have a positive impact on the world, Christy is a natural fit as co-founder of LoveTheWild. Christy wants to make an impact on the world. Looking forward to showing people that frozen fish can be super fresh, sustainable, and most importantly, delicious.
Kimberly Smith, a former compliance officer developed the highly acclaimed client due diligence and Anti Money Laundering compliance software application, SILO in 2012. This software is the compliance solution many regulated businesses seek. For too long compliance professionals have struggled with AML obligations, frequently using inadequate software or Excel spreadsheets to manage the mountain of client data and due diligence documents, unable to run timely, adequate, informative reports often leave senior management in the dark and at risk of regulatory fines or worse.
Leo Bottary is Vice President, Peer Advantage for Vistage Worldwide, where he directs a thought leadership initiative on the power of peer influence for business leaders. Leo recently coauthored the book, The Power of Peers with Leon Shapiro, which was released by the publisher in March, 2016. Since 2008, Leo has also served as an adjunct professor, teaching online and on campus residencies for two of Seton Hall University’s graduate communication and leadership programs. In 2015, he was named adjunct teacher of the year for the College of Communication and the Arts.
Earlier in his career, Leo served in senior leadership positions at Mullen and at Hill & Knowlton (H&K), where he was also Director of Client Service for the US. In the mid 1990s, Leo founded a public relations agency that a leading industry trade publication hailed as a regional powerhouse, new media pioneer, and great place to work. Bottary & Partners Public Relations won national and regional awards and developed a website that was named best PR Agency website in America by Ragan Communications in 1997. He sold the firm in 2000.
Leo has earned a BA from Jacksonville University, an MA in Strategic Communication and Leadership from Seton Hall University and is expected to receive his EdD from Northeastern University with a concentration in Organizational Leadership upon completion of his Leos dissertation topic focuses on learning outcomes for CEOs who participate in peer advisory groups.
Adam Cookson co-founded TekDry International in 2013 — a company that recovers wet smart devices such as cell phones, tablets, computers, watches, cameras, wearables and other devices from moisture intrusion. As co-founder and CEO, Adam’s responsibilities include strategic business planning, domestic and international business development, capital formation, investor relations, and leading the TekDry’s business team for growth and expansion.
Adam brings over 25 years of successful corporate start-ups and manufacturing experiences including, technology, wind energy, automotive assembly, synthetic rubber and plastics extrusion molding.
Adam is fluent in Spanish and Portuguese and has strong computer skills in multiple operating systems, simulation software, and data analysis tools. He holds an executive MBA from the University of Denver, and a BS in Electrical Engineering from Kettering University, Flint, MI.
Adam enjoys networking with other startup and business professionals, reading, skiing, photography and amateur astronomy near Denver, Colorado where he resides with his wife Mirela and their three children.
Kirk Dando helped scale and sell a billion-dollar company. As a C-level executive, he walked the lonely road of leadership and worried himself to distraction, but learned a lot. For more than 20 years, he has worked with more than 6,000 executives. These include ten Ernst & Young Entrepreneurs of the Year and several Best CEO winners.
His bestselling book, Predictive Leadership: Avoiding the 12 Most Common Mistakes that Derail Growth-Hungry Companies, shows execs how to predict and prepare for the most common business pitfalls. It helps eradicate their fears and doubts that make it lonely at the top. Kirk has a stunning track record of causing breakthrough growth for companies that face problems stemming from their own success.
As seen on Fox Business and Bloomberg Television, audiences relate to his real-world stories and his high-energy, no-nonsense style as he demonstrates how leaders can predict problems before they show up in the results.
You wont find another leadership expert like Kirk. He combines the raw emotion felt by leaders with the real-world action needed to achieve and sustain success. Forget complicated theories and bogus acronyms; Kirk gets to the heart of the matter to help leaders create real change in the lives of their employees, shareholders and themselves.
Scott Sutton, President & Founder of Unser Karting and Events has a Bachelor of Arts in Communications from Washington State University. He has a diverse background, working in an array of fields including public relations, advertising, operations, sales, and marketing. He has worked in various industries including high technology, retail, service, and construction. In 2004, Scott started his first company, a high tech security integration firm which he grew into a multi-million-dollar company. Scott later sold to a public entity where he held the President and CEO position for two years. Before Scott started Unser Karting & Events, he was responsible for starting up a security integration division for a large technology company. When Scott isn’t working, you can find him hanging out with his wife and 2 daughters or on his bike on a quiet road or trail in the Colorado Foothills.
Stephen Woessner is CEO of Predictive ROI and the host of the brilliant Onward Nation podcast. He is the author of two bestselling books, The Small Business Owners Handbook to Search Engine Optimization and Increase Online Sales Through Viral Social Networking. His digital marketing insights have been featured in SUCCESS, Forbes, Entrepreneur, The Washington Post, Inc. Magazine and more.
What sets Stephen and Predictive ROI apart is its uncommon approach to digital marketing. Stephen founded the company on the principle that predictable results and guaranteed return on investment comes from proven practices. He and his team spent years researching in both the academic world and private sector. What was evident to Stephen that there was a disconnect in the process in how companies drove traffic to their websites. All of this culminated in the development of the Predictive ROI Method, an approach designed to effect real change for companies with $1 million to $30 million a year in revenue. The company’s patent-pending process helps organizations significantly increase website traffic, accelerate lead generation, and increase return on investment online by 200 to 500 percent in 12-months or less – or it’s 100 percent free.