Founder & CEO
Bill Shepard is the Founder and CEO of COO Forum, a 15-year-old professional development association for Second-in-Command Executives. He founded the COO Forum in 2004 expressly to enable COOs and Second-in-Command Executives to have an opportunity to learn and problem-solve with their peers.
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Executive Vice President
Laura Weikle brings extensive organizational management experience to the COO Forum. She spearheads chapter growth and development, manages member services, oversees the administrative functions of the association, and works directly with CEO Bill Shepard overseeing the association's day-to-day operations.
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EASTERN REGION CHAPTER DIRECTORS
Larry Stybel is a licensed doctoral-level psychologist, co-founder of two companies, a national expert on corporate governance/leadership and careers. He and his partner Maryanne Peabody are co-authors of monthly perspectives on leadership published in Psychology Today and downloaded 240,000 times. They are co-authors of Navigating the Waterfall, a book on leadership in the 21st Century. One of Larry's companies focuses on providing leaders for Board of Directors. Another company focuses on Leadership & Career Success. Larry received his doctorate from Harvard University.
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Maryanne Peabody is co-founder and Vice President of Stybel Peabody. As an organization development consultant, she has assisted companies in the areas of leadership effectiveness and career management since 1981. One of Maryanne's areas of expertise is assisting individuals rising through the professional ranks to become leaders without their having received specific education in management. Maryanne has been a guest on various national and local TV and radio programs to discuss career issues. Her work has been featured in The Wall Street Journal, Harvard Business Review, MIT Sloan Management Review, and The Boston Globe.
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Portsmouth, New Hampshire
Kerri Salls is an advisor, speaker, facilitator, mentor, podcast host, and author of numerous whitepapers including the Value Growth Manifesto and the best-selling Multiply Your Business Value in 3 Steps. She works with CEOs of closely held businesses in the middle market who are under pressure to grow, and optimize operations; to refocus on measurable results that increase long-term value. Her background in corporate strategy, business ownership, and work as a certified value growth adviser has taught her that middle market businesses are under-performing. Kerri operates at the intersection of strategy, systems and value growth to help middle market companies achieve measurable long-term results that demonstrate sustainability and scalability.
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Gwen Kinsey helps people navigate the gap between the way things used to be and our fast-emerging future. She facilitates leadership meetings that explore strategic direction, workshops designed to help people navigate the inevitable challenges that arise from organizational change and leadership executive coaching that supports change makers. Gwen incorporates holistic practices that help people learn as they go. Her workshop expertise includes developing soft skills, the dynamics of change management, building collaborative teams and experiential, natural systems approaches for collaborative problem solving.
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New York, New York
Chris O'Rourke is the COO of ThoughtMatter, a New York City based design and strategy agency focused on finding purpose and driving change within agencies, communities, start-ups and non-profits. He has worked on global projects for companies including P&G, Kimberly Clark, Microsoft, Kraft and UNICEF. He is a frequent speaker on the intersection between technology, operations and the creative practice and is a mentor in the School of Visual Arts Masters in Branding program, supporting students through their studies and post-graduation. Chris is an accomplished marathon runner and running coach.
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Monique Gaw is a senior financial and general management leader who can assess situations and determine the impact of decisions on market value and overall business success. She has served as COO for a diversified energy development and integration company serving public and private sector clients around the world. Monique started her career on Wall Street where she established global expertise in financial services—and moved on to Washington where she became a regulatory expert to ensure company operations and interests are served by regulation both domestically and abroad.
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SOUTHERN REGION CHAPTER DIRECTORS
Gina Folk bridges the gap between operational agility and leadership abilities. She finds that too many organizations compartmentalize departments, work in silos – not fully understanding their purpose which creates massive waste and chaos. Productivity and profit are gushing out of these companies. Gina takes her 20+ years of corporate experience working with people, process and change to help small to medium size businesses become more operationally efficient, eliminating waste and increasing productivity and profits.
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Richard Mays Owen
Austin, Houston & San Antonio, Texas
Richard Mays Owen's most recent 20-years consulting in business analysis, process improvement, and compliance has exponentially enhanced the previous 20-years of excellence in business-to-business relationship building and strategic decision making critical to leadership success. In 2008, Richard earned his Ph.D. in Leadership Studies with a dissertation and published work in Business Ethics, followed by designing and teaching Risk Management & Organizational resiliency in Cybersecurity. Richard is now bringing his education, experience, and network exclusively to the board room by founding Top Board Advisor.
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Charlotte, North Carolina
Chaks Karuturi is an experienced Consultant in Business Process improvement, Strategic/Financial Planning and Performance management, with over 30 years of leadership, operational and international experience in premier companies, namely Xerox, Bank of America, AT&T and IBM.
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Rick Kloete has more than 25 years of recruiting, search, talent acquisition, sales, sales leadership, and coaching experience. Rick has extensive global and national sales and management experience with Siemens, AT&T, NEC, GTE, Lucent Technologies, Verizon, AVAYA and leadership roles with Chamber of Commerce, Nashville Association of Sales Professionals, Toastmasters International, Wholesalers, Professional Associations and community and non-profit organizations.
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Miami/Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
Percy Cannon is an executive coach, leadership consultant, author and speaker. He is an "alumnus" from three multinational corporations, P&G, IBM and Microsoft. He leverages his close to three decades of corporate, executive-level experience to coach corporations within the Americas in leadership, career and personal development. Percy is a Certified Professional Coach from Wainwright Global, an Authorized Partner for "The Five Behaviors of a Cohesive Team," and "Everything DiSC" methodologies, and a certified "Go-Giver" speaker & coach. Percy has lived in seven different cities and five countries, and speaks Spanish (native) and Portuguese fluently. He's a passionate runner and reader.
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Alicia Butler Pierre
Alicia Butler Pierre is the founder and CEO of Equilibria, Inc., a 14-year-old operations management firm specializing in business infrastructure for fast growing small businesses. Alicia has a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Louisiana State University, an MBA from Tulane University, and a Lean Six Sigma Black Belt certification. Combined, her content has over half a million views across various online platforms. Alicia hosts the weekly Business Infrastructure: Curing Back Office Blues podcast. She's also the author of the Amazon bestseller, Behind the Facade: How to Structure Company Operations for Sustainable Success. Committed to doing the right things the right way, Alicia's mantra is "to leave it better than you found it."
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MIDWESTERN REGION CHAPTER DIRECTORS
Catherine King is a Texas-born businesswoman, who has traveled the world searching for talent on behalf of the world's leading organizations. Having lived and worked in England for a few years, "Crown" Talent is a nod to Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth. Catherine, herself having been a CEO, is now engaged in searching for and on behalf of them, that rarefied and gifted executive that companies yearn for - to take them to their aspirational heights in performance. She is known for building leadership strength in others that have had meaningful impact on the companies and organizations they serve.
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Cathy Lieberman is an executive coach, facilitator, change management consultant and a skilled public speaker. With 25 years of corporate and non-profit experience, she coaches individuals and teams in leadership, career and skill development. Cathy serves as a board member for World Chicago and as a Mentor for the Leadership Circle of the Executives Club of Chicago and is certified in Coaching for Learning and Performance from Northwestern University’s School of Education and Social Policy.
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Margaret Ricci is the Founder and CEO of Cultural Strategies, LLC. Margaret is the first triple-qualified Gallup Coach in the Twin Cities area. She is a Gallup-Certified Strengths Coach, Gallup BP10 Coach, and Gallup Q12 Employee Engagement Champion. Margaret uses a broad knowledge gained from over 30 years in business at multiple levels. She understands the needs of business owners to develop themselves as leaders to build strong teams and businesses that benefit their clients and employees. Margaret also has a keen interest in helping leadership teams excel, getting past problematic conflicts, and becoming more productive in their interactions with one another.
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Jeanette Renshaw is the founder of Smart Scale Consulting. She is an authentic leader and problem solver with a passion to help companies achieve repeatable, predictable and profitable results in order to scale revenue and growth through optimizing sales. Rooted in the belief that there is no neutral in business, Jeanette helps companies translate their innovation into forward progress no matter if they're bringing their first product to market or commercializing corporate innovation. Her background experience with B2C and B2B companies across many industries. She specializes in early-stage B2B SaaS companies slotted for high growth.
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Kansas City, Missouri
John Nelson is co-founder and CEO of Morris Nelson & Associates LLC. John has vast experience adapting, integrating and applying diverse methods and frameworks for solving complex problems. For the past several years, he has worked extensively with federal, state and local law enforcement agencies combating transnational criminal organizations, facilitating large-scale, inter-agency working groups and developing new analytical methods and tools to thwart the flow of illicit commodities. Since retiring from the Army in 2007, John has published several articles and presented at numerous professional conferences on organizational improvement, analysis and knowledge management topics.
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Tony D'Avino is founder of The Performance Collaborative. Tony applies nearly 30-years of experience in leading sales, marketing and B2B media organizations. During his career in professional business media, Tony navigated cultural shift, change process (transition) and talent needs of an organization transforming from a print publishing business to a digital media organization. Change and development is a messy process, and without the people strategy to support the business strategy, your success is at high risk. Tony is a Certified Partner with The Predictive Index and Certified Six Seconds Vital Signs consultant and Tony applies these tools in helping companies and revenue leaders develop insight into the people-side of performance.
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John LaMotta is a Recruiting, SME, Talent Optimization Certified Consultant, Employer Branding Strategist, and Career Coach with 20+ years of experience in talent acquisition, recruitment processes business consulting, sales, marketing, and employer/personal branding. Through senior executive and consulting roles, John has worked with/for the most nationally recognized brands. John founded Talent Harvest LLC, a full-service talent management and recruitment consulting firm specialized in Talent Optimization and Retained Recruitment as a Service (RaaS). His firm will work with any sized company, but specializes in partnering with start-ups and small businesses.
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Jennifer LaMotta is Co-Founder and Director of Operations at Talent Harvest LLC, a full-service talent management and recruitment consulting firm specialized in Talent Optimization and Retained Recruitment as a Service (RaaS). The firm will work with any sized company, but specializes in partnering with start-ups and small businesses. Jennifer brings 15+ years of diversified experience in business analysis, operational planning, marketing communications, and human resource management. She has worked in various leader and project management roles for small to large staffing and recruiting companies as well as non-profit organizations.
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Maria Reynolds is President and Owner of Delta Coaching and Consulting LLC. Her life mission and personal passion has always been about finding ways to improve: both personally and professionally. This includes creating cultures where everyone is learning, growing, and contributing to their fullest potential. Maria recently retired after 27+ years at Procter and Gamble. She served as Senior Supply Chain Leader, held leadership roles on launch teams for Crest Whitestrips® and Tide PODs®, and was design and implementation leader on the Global End-to-End Planning Team. Her legacy at P&G was the ability to manage inclusion, develop high-performing organizations, and deliver winning cultures. "As a leader, my job is to love people. The work will get done, it always does. The question is, how do people feel at the end?"
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WESTERN REGION CHAPTER DIRECTORS
San Francisco & Silicon Valley, California
Bill Shepard is the Founder and CEO of COO Forum, a 14-year-old professional development association for Second-in-Command Executives. He founded the COO Forum in 2004 expressly to enable COOs and Second-in-Command Executives to have an opportunity to learn and problem-solve with their peers.
Find Bill on LinkedIn
Marvell C. Allen
Marvell C. Allen is Owner and Principal, of Millennium Career Advantage, LLC, a professional leadership development and executive coaching practice, started in 2010. Marvell is an expert at delivering executive, management, and staff development programs with passion and commitment, focused on supporting organizational objectives. Marvell is known as a key strategic partner for senior executives and cross-functional teams to help achieve business imperatives. Additionally, she is a sought-after business facilitator who assists teams and organizations with solving their most critical challenges. Marvell holds several coaching certifications and has worked with both domestic and global teams. Current and past clients have included companies and organizations in technology, banking/financial services, hospitality, municipalities, and the US Government.
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San Diego, California
Felicia Lyon is an accomplished human capital professional and trusted advisor with 20 years' experience; 11 of those years at one of the largest consulting firms. She brings a hands-on approach, backed by leading practices, to develop and deliver organization effectiveness solutions to drive her clients' key business objectives. She has expertise in executive coaching, organization design, competency modeling, performance management, leadership alignment, and organizational change management. Her track record of success spans across industries to include Energy, Life Sciences, Technology, and State and Federal government.
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Paul Herrerias has more than 30 years of executive search and leadership consulting services in the Bay Area. He has conducted hundreds of search assignments in the professional and financial services, consumer products, technology and wine industries. Prior to becoming Managing Director of Comhar Partners' San Francisco office, he ran Stanton Chase San Francisco for 13-years and co-founded three additional executive search and consulting firms. Paul lectures and consults with CPA firms on recruiting, leadership development and succession planning.
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Rich Horan, a former Air Force Colonel, provides extensive leadership and operations expertise gained over 28-years in a wide variety of global management roles. Currently he provides cognitive diversity and insight to entrepreneurs and organizations as a coach, mentor and angel investor. A national Association of Corporate Directors Board Fellow, Rich is an independent board member of a private company, serves on the Yolo County Financial Oversight Committee and served as a not-for-profit board member.
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Silicon Valley, California
Juan Montermoso is an executive consultant in Marketing and Leadership Development. Juan enables high-tech organizations to reach, touch, and retain their best customers through effective marketing planning and implementation. Juan also is a professor of Practice in Marketing at the Leavey School of Business, Santa Clara University and is a core faculty member and mentor at Silicon Valley TVLP (Technology Venture Launch Program).
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Ralph Young is partner of Top Gun Ventures, a premier global executive search firm that specializes in recruiting proven executive GameChangers. With a background in a variety of vertical markets at Microsoft, including executive leadership positions within multi-billion dollar business units, Ralph understands what it takes to build and run a world-class organization across a wide array of markets.
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Orange County, California
Petra Matern-Russell is an International Business Training Executive, Culture Consultant, and Triple-Certified Leadership Coach. Petra's work is a 'guidance-from-within-approach' that involves a commitment to act skillfully in the present moment and making intentions for future actions to achieve extraordinary and sustainable success. She partners with individuals and organizations to create real breakthroughs in performance by leveraging her expertise in building an authentic culture to increase employee engagement and her background in Design Thinking to drive change and inspire a bias to action.
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Isabella Zaczek utilizes her 18-years experience supporting Fortune 500 and other global companies, to leverage the potential of their sales and operations teams to increase profits and loyalty while lowering organizational friction and costs. Isabella's endeavor is to mind and bridge the gap between the key stakeholder teams in the customer service life cycle, to improve internal engagement and dedication, and increase customer sales and loyalty. Having led 120+ people strong global customer operations teams across Europe, Asia, North, Latin- and South-America, performing various roles in Customer Operations, Sales, Service Delivery, System and People Training and Coaching, Program and Bid Management, Isabella comprehends what organizations need from their internal teams.
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San Francisco, California
Aiphi Wang is a senior finance executive, developing finance and accounting functions by recruiting talents, setting up processes and implementing new systems. She has enabled growth, analytics, and strategic development at multiple VC-backed companies. She has also worked at a Fortune 300 company and PwC transaction services on IPO and M&A deals. She holds a Masters in Financial Engineering from UC Berkeley and is a CFA and CPA.
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INTERNATIONAL CHAPTER DIRECTORS
Montreal, QC, Canada
Alain Gardner is the ‘go to’ person in the fields of high-performance teams, change management, performance management and business transformation (from strategy to bottom-line results). Alain has over 25-years leading businesses through change by training/coaching of management, employees and teams into surpassing their own perceived limits. He is experienced with large, medium and small businesses with international experience in North America, South America and Europe.
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London, United Kingdom
Geoff Shorter is a vastly experienced recruiter and sales manager with an enviable track record of high performance. As a professional recruiter with a strong commercial background and former owner and manager of two recruitment enterprises, Geoff supports SMEs with growth, cash flow management, corporate governance and compliance, recruitment and retention, and coaching and mentoring. He currently works with start-up businesses within the recruitment industry, and in the personal development and training industries.
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Brad Horan is the founder and director of Lucrature-Financial Peak Performance. Brad helps business executives get out from under the day-to-day management of their companies by putting the management infrastructure in place that teaches the business to manage itself. Brad has an extensive career in management accounting and global business transformation with such firms as HSBC, MetLife, Vodafone and Otis Elevator.
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