President & CEO
Fred co-founded Smart Business Network in 1989 with a single publication in Cleveland, Ohio. In the years since, he has built the company into a leading multimedia and content marketing business providing print and digital marketing services to a national client base.
Chief Development Officer
Pivot Technology School
Isaac, a first-generation Ghanaian American and former computer engineer, is committed to strengthening communities of color. He is Chief Development Officer of Pivot Technology School, responsible for fostering relationships to connect minorities with technology career opportunities. He is also an Assistant Professor at Tennessee State University’s College of Business, teaching courses in business strategy, entrepreneurship, and leadership.
Founder & Principal
Pat, Founder and Principal of ASPire is committed to the continuity of the goodness of companies and organizations by serving leaders to sustain the specialness of their companies and alignment to achieve amplified results. Patricia is an accomplished C-Suite Executive and Board Member who leverages her experience, leadership acuity and decisive record positioning her as an expert in organizational and digital transformational, innovation, and scaling multi-location distributed model businesses for strategic and financial performance improvement. She has gained unparalleled insights and perspective by serving at the Executive Level of ServiceMaster, a Fortune 500 publicly traded Company that was named one of the most respected companies in the world by Financial Times; as president of an SBU, and leader of Human Resources, Strategic Planning and Six Sigma that created $60 million is savings, with emphasis on performance for all stakeholders, culture and values business model integration, distributed model processes and leadership principles. Using two proven methodologies to integrate the culture into the business or organizational model, the culture can then be monitored and measured.
Her experience also includes serving both as President and then CEO and Board Member for two private equity turnarounds; accomplished through new strategies and digital transformations, using existing core competencies, and alignment of mission, vision, values and behaviors. She led all aspects of geographically dispersed business models throughout her career.
Leading the implementation of Six Sigma (methodology for process improvement) in a $7 Billion global public company comprised of 14 Operating Companies with 5000 locations, provides her with the understanding of how performance is amplified through the alignment of Purpose, People, Process, & Profit coupled with extensive experience building & improving organizations for performance & profit improvement has provided a strong foundation.
Additionally, she has been developing leaders and supporting organizational priorities her entire career and is known for her passion on helping executives and organizations achieve their aspirational goals by aligning Purpose, People, Process & Profit and integrating their Purpose (mission, vision and values) into their business models in an intentionally inclusionary manner and is a frequent speaker on this topic.
She has served on both for profit and not for profit boards. Patricia currently serves as an Independent Director of 4word, founded to help women reach their God-given potential with confidence and as Advisory Board Director and Chair of Generate.
Waller Lansden Dortch & Davis LLP
Companies and investors in healthcare, technology, manufacturing, distribution and other industries rely on Tyson Bickley for counsel in a wide range of strategic corporate transactions and business arrangements. He assists venture capital and private equity funds in investments in new and emerging companies, and he advises startups and early-stage companies in securities offerings to access the capital needed for growth. Tyson’s transactional experience also includes the representation of well-established and publicly traded companies in complex mergers, acquisitions, joint ventures, and dispositions.
Tyson rejoined Waller in 2017 after serving as Chief Development Officer at Contessa Health where he led successful development efforts for joint ventures with health systems and health plans to participate in bundled payment programs for home hospitalization and other patient-centered care models.
Director, Business Development
Cherry Bekaert LLP
In his role as Business Development Director, Chad is responsible for originating and developing the Firm’s relationships with entrepreneurs and private equity investors in the Nashville area. He brings more than 15 years of business development, investment and sales experience with particular expertise in the healthcare and technology industries.
Founder & CEO
Jeremy is the Founder & CEO of Kindful, a cloud-based platform helping nonprofits across all 50 states and multiple continents amplify their fundraising, simplify their donor management, and maximize their impact. With 15+ years of experience growing web-based software and media companies, he is a serial entrepreneur devoted to the idea that, together, we can build a better world. Jeremy has devoted his career to building companies focused on creating community by working across functional groups and industries to cobble together unique and practical, yet technologically advanced, solutions.
Fifth Third Bank
David serves as regional president for Fifth Third Bank, N.A. (Tennessee). He is responsible for delivering distinctive value for our customers and community and for driving the growth and strategic alignment of our Business, Commercial, Capital Markets, Wealth & Asset Management and Consumer businesses. Dave has more than 30 years of diverse banking experience, with the last 20 in the Nashville area.
Executive Managing Director
Steve co-founded LFM Capital and brings to the Fund over 23 years of operating experience, having served in a variety of senior executive and functional roles in manufacturing, supply chain, engineering, technology and sales. Prior to founding LFM, Steve was a Principal with TVV Capital (2010-2014), where he directed portfolio value creation efforts of six portfolio investments, with a focus on operating improvements, management recruiting, leadership development training and performance. Steve also was Chief Operating Officer of MFG.com (2009-2010), the world’s largest global online marketplace for the manufacturing industry, and spent 11 years as a Southeastern regional Senior Director with The Dell Corp. (1998-2009). Prior to joining Dell, Steve served as a Lieutenant in the United States Navy (1989-1996), where he flew combat missions in support of Desert Shield. He received a BS in Electrical Engineering from the U.S. Naval Academy, his MS in Electrical Engineering from MIT’s School of Engineering and his MBA from the MIT Sloan School of Management.
Tennessee Valley Group, Inc.
Jim is president of Tennessee Valley Group, a retainer based business brokerage and transition mediation firm in Franklin. Jim is an attorney and has an MBA from Harvard Business School. He has over 25-years of deal making experience, having personally negotiated deals totaling over $500 million. As successful media entrepreneur and later senior corporate executive, Jim knows the language of both buyer and seller.
Southwestern Investment Group - Dobyns Wealth Team
Jeff founded Southwestern Investment Group in 2002. As its President, Jeff has led the company to remarkable success, holding the distinction of being one of Raymond James’ top independent contractor offices every year since 2008. Jeff’s personal team, Dobyns Wealth Team, incorporates the expertise of attorneys and accountants to provide quality financial, tax, estate, and charitable planning, and ongoing asset and risk management.
Director of Wholesale Banking MTN Region
First Horizon Bank
Renee is Director of Wholesale Banking for the Middle Tennessee Region of First Horizon Bank. Renee leads a business unit that generates $50M in annual revenues and assets of approximately $1.8B. Renee is a graduate of Leadership Nashville, serves on the Board of the United Way of Greater Nashville and is currently a member of the Nashville Downtown Rotary.
Wealth Management Advisor
RoseCrete Wealth Management
Reggie is an entrepreneur, philanthropist, mental health advocate, and social activist. A first generation college graduate of Vanderbilt University, he runs RoseCrete Wealth Management in Nashville, TN and speaks to audiences about financial literacy as well as the importance of diversity, equity, inclusion and accessibility.
Shan is the co-founder and CEO of Fostering Healthy Solutions, where he cultivates healthy solutions to diversity issues through education, training and execution. His experience includes work with several sectors, including entertainment, financial services, technology, media, environmental services and law enforcement. Foster is passionate about diversity and is seen as a visionary amongst leaders.
A native Nashvillian, LeShane is the Founder of SalesCocktail. Prior to his current venture, LeShane founded Pishon Sales Outsourcing and co-Founded Sagents. In 2016, he was selected by Google and Code2040 to serve as an Entrepreneur-In-Residence at Google's Tech Hub. A graduate of the University of Memphis, LeShane received his BBA with a concentration in MIS. LeShane also completed the “Building High Performing Businesses” Executive Education program at Dartmouth’s Tuck School of Business.
Managing General Partner
Grant joined Council Capital in 2009 and is the firm’s Managing General Partner. He has focused entirely on private equity investing in the healthcare services and healthcare IT sectors since 2001. Prior to joining Council, Grant worked with two other private equity firms, The Aurora Funds and First Analysis Corporation. He began his career with Accenture helping companies grow and integrate acquisitions.
Grant is currently on the Board of Council portfolio companies eMids, EspriGas, and Experience Wellness Centers.
Vanderbilt University - Owen School of Management
M. Eric Johnson is the Dean of Vanderbilt University’s Owen Graduate School of Management and the Bruce D. Henderson Professor of Strategy. He also anchors a video series on business and blogs on leadership. Previously he served as Associate Dean for the MBA program at Dartmouth College’s Tuck School of Business, where he was also Faculty Director of the Center for Digital Strategies. He holds a B.S. in Economics, B.S. in Engineering, M.S. in Engineering from Penn State University, and a Ph.D. in Engineering from Stanford University.
Managing Director - Market Head
Jerry has more than 30 years of financial services experience, including 26 years of experience with UBS. Jerry’s industry experience includes roles as a financial advisor, a Branch Office Manager and a Regional Director. During his tenure at UBS, Jerry has developed deep knowledge of the field and the firm, helping him guide advisors to greater success. Further broadening his experience and knowledge of the industry, Jerry has directed UBS’s Leadership Management and Development Program, which enabled him to study the best practices that are used to support Financial Advisors. He also has presented at leadership seminars in the U.S., Zurich and London. Jerry returned to Nashville in 2013 as Market Head for Tennessee & Kentucky. Prior, Jerry served as Market Area Manager and Complex Director for Atlanta. In January of 2018, Jerry's responsibilities increased to include the addition of the Arkansas and Louisiana markets, creating the South Central Market Area. Jerry graduated from Western Carolina University with a BSBA degree in marketing and economics.
Lee M. Koury
Lee is managing partner of Smart Business, a national events, media and marketing company founded in 1989, primarily responsible for expanding the company’s Aspire deal-making conference throughout the U.S. He plays a key role in establishing corporate policies and developing long-term strategy and growth plans. Previously, he founded and chaired the Growth Group at national law firm Arter & Hadden LLP (now Tucker, Ellis & West), which focused on working with middle-market and high-growth technology companies.
Sameera has enjoyed a career of marketing, association management and event planning, and has been the Executive Director of EO Nashville for 16 years, leading the largest chapter in the United States, and the third largest in the world. Lowe is actively involved in the community, especially with Safe Haven Family Shelter and the Leadership Nashville Class of 2020.
Owner & CEO
The Alternative Board of Nashville
Rick is the owner and CEO of The Alternative Board of Nashville, where he and his team advise company owners and CEO's in their pursuit of their personal and company visions. He spent 30+ years leading companies in various types of ownership: private, family, PE owned and publicly traded. He has led his businesses through several acquisitions and divestitures, equipping him with first hand experience in maximizing firm value. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of Nebraska and a Masters in Management degree from the Kellogg Graduate School at Northwestern University. He has served on Boards of Directors and is a certified executive coach. Rick is married with three children.
Managing Director/General Manager
Wanda is the General Manager of the UBS Nashville Business Solutions Center. In her role, she is responsible for overseeing the Business Solution Center's operating model and associated service delivery. She provides leadership and management oversight for the Nashville functions which include Information Technology, Operations, Human Resources, Finance, Legal and Group Risk. Wanda is also the Responsible Executive for UBS Business Solutions US which is the Service Company for UBS US operating entities.
Eller is the Managing Director of Jumpstart Foundry, a seed-stage healthcare investment fund based in Nashville, Tennessee. Eller oversees the management of 100+ portfolio companies that span the healthcare industry. Jumpstart Foundry is changing the way early-stage healthcare companies are funded by innovating around the traditional venture model, making it more entrepreneur-friendly, improving the odds of founder success, and driving outsized returns for investors.
John Mark McDougal
Private Equity Practice Leader – Middle Market
John Mark is shareholder-in-charge of LBMC’s Private Equity Middle Market Practice and Audit and Advisory Practice. He serves as the lead shareholder for services provided to Private Equity Groups and their Portfolio Companies and has over 25 years of experience serving clients. He joined LBMC in 2004, was named partner in 2006 and began leading the manufacturing and distribution industry practice in 2007, with a focus on Private Equity-Backed clients. His clients have been involved in both the buy and sell side of acquisitions, and he has served as a business advisor in both capacities.
Frazier & Deeter
Jason joined Frazier & Deeter in December of 2000 after having previously been with Arthur Andersen’s Atlanta office. He served as the Head of Frazier & Deeter’s Tax Department during 2011 and 2012.
Jason primarily specializes in complex business taxation consulting and compliance. His focus includes privately held, private equity backed and publicly traded entities. Jason has provided consulting services regarding corporate and equity compensation, including the use of stock options and partnership interests. On the transactional side, Jason has provided consulting services regarding mergers & acquisitions and business restructuring for purposes of asset liability protection.
Jason has experience in a variety of industries including healthcare, technology, service, manufacturing and real estate. He is Partner on several of the firm’s largest clients.
RSM US LLP
Tom is a partner with RSM’s Southeast practice with over 25 years of experience. He recently relocated from RSM’s Chicago office to join the firm’s new Nashville office and leads the Tennessee assurance practice. Tom specializes in providing audit services to midsized companies, with a concentration on companies owned by private equity groups. Tom also manages some of the firm’s largest private equity group relationships. Specific industries Tom serves include healthcare and business services.
Chris is a Partner at Shore Capital, a microcap private equity firm focused on partnering with companies that have between $1-10 million of EBITDA. Chris’ responsibilities include sourcing, evaluating and enabling the growth of Shore healthcare investments. Chris is on the Board of Directors of EyeSouth, Great Lakes Dental, Assembly, SENTA, Southern Sports Medicine and Southern Orthodontic.
Tonya Mitchem Grindon
Ms. Grindon is chair of Baker Donelson’s Business Department. She focuses her practice in securities and corporate finance, corporate governance and business transactions, across industry sectors, for public and private companies. Tonya is recognized in Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business and was previously named a “Top USA Women Dealmaker” by Global M&A Network.
Bass, Berry & Sims
Tatjana is an M&A partner at Bass, Berry & Sims, PLC and focuses on middle market acquisition and disposition transactions across a range of industries including healthcare, manufacturing, food and beverage, and technology. To date, Tatjana has advised clients in M&A transactions valued at over $20 billion in the aggregate. She is a frequent speaker on M&A topics and serves as a Chair of the American Bar Association’s “Private Target Deal Points Study,” which has been widely recognized as the gold standard for market metrics of key negotiated legal issues in M&A agreements.
Eric joined NOW CFO in 2017 and is a Partner in the Nashville and Knoxville, Tennessee offices. He has worked as a leader, manager, and CFO for a wide variety of industries including manufacturing, technology, non-profit, and farming. Eric is an expert in finance leadership, financial analysis, internal controls, forecasting and budgeting, and business support.
Prior to joining NOW CFO, Eric was a CFO for a manufacturing company in Tennessee, the owner of a startup business, and spent 10 years with International Paper and Dell, Inc. Eric attended Rhodes College in Memphis, Tennessee where he obtained a Bachelor and Master of Science in Accounting. He maintains an active CPA license.
Bass, Berry & Sims
Frank advises public and private companies in a broad range of transactional, corporate governance and securities matters. Over the course of his career, he has completed more than $25.0 billion worth of mergers and acquisitions for public and private companies across various industries including healthcare and manufacturing, among others.
Impact Human Performance
Nick is an Executive Coach, Keynote speaker and Change Agent dedicated to helping clients align purpose and potential to optimize performance.
Prior to co-founding Impact Human Performance, Nick was a leader at the Johnson & Johnson Human Performance Institute. In this role Nick was both a Performance Coach, guiding clients through high impact programming in the fields of Energy Management and Resilience, and the lead for the Professional Service Business Unit managing critical relationships with some of the world’s leading management consultancies, accounting and executive search firms and marketing services agencies.
GM Global Cloud Solutions, Security Products
Experienced chief executive officer, technologist, and founder of two cloud startups, both taken to successful acquisition. Demonstrated leadership in cloud, IoT, network video, software, video analytics, M2M, RMR, and SaaS. Industry leading intellectual property innovator with more than 50 patents and 800 granted patent claims. Accomplished in investor relations, mergers and acquisitions, capital formation, board leadership, entrepreneurship, technology strategy, and strategic partnerships.
International Scholarship and Tuition Services
Becky Sharpe’s passion is to help people grow. Her educational background includes a Bachelor of Arts degree in German and French from Vanderbilt University and a master’s degree in international marketing from Owen Graduate School of Management at Vanderbilt University. She is currently the CEO/Owner of three businesses, International Scholarship and Tuition Services, Collegiate Sports Data and WatchGameFilm where her focus is on effective leadership and innovation through the lens of continuous growth.
SVP & Credit Products Senior Manager
Tracey is a Senior Vice President and Credit Products Senior Manager in PNC Bank’s Corporate and Investment Banking Group, where her team manages the middle market and large corporate debt portfolio for PNC’s Tennessee and Kentucky markets. Tracey is a 30-year veteran in the financial services and banking sector. Tracey is a graduate of the University of Alabama’s School of Business and obtained her MBA from Goizuetta Business School at Emory University. She holds both Series 7 and 63 Securities Licenses.
Gen Cap America
Lamar joined Gen Cap in 2016. Previously, Mr. Stanley was with Diversified Trust Company, a Nashville-based wealth management firm where Mr. Stanley worked in their private-equity strategy group. Prior to Diversified Trust Company, Mr. Stanley served as an Intelligence Officer in the United States Navy. He holds a B.A. degree from The University of the South, in Sewanee, TN and an M.B.A. from The University of Chicago.
David Thorpe is the CEO of Upperline Health which he co-founded in 2016. Prior to Upperline, David was one of the first employees of Aspire Health helping open and run markets throughout the country. Before that he worked in the administration of Governor Bill Haslam guiding operational efficiency and cost cutting initiatives. He is a graduate of Princeton University.
Ernst & Young LLP
Kristy is a Tax Partner and leads the EY Private tax practice in Tennessee, providing tax planning and compliance services to private enterprises and their owners. Kristy has 23 years of experience working with companies in the retail and consumer products, finance, health and other services industries. Kristy previously served as the co-leader of EY’s Southeast Region Business Tax Services and led the Business Tax Advisory Services group, supporting the implementation of specialized tax projects in various tax accounting methods and credits areas.
President & Chief Operating Officer
SESAC Rights Management, Inc.
Kelli serves as President and COO of SESAC Rights Management, overseeing day-to-day operations and finance functions. Recently, Turner spearheaded the completion of a $560 million whole-business securitization debt refinancing for SESAC and, in 2017, led the sale of SESAC Holdings to Blackstone. She also oversees the company’s most important licensing negotiations. Previously, Turner held senior leadership positions at RSL Management, Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, Inc., and Time Warner, Inc.
Graham Healthcare Capital
Jim Ward is a Vice President at Graham Healthcare Capital, a Nashville, TN-based firm providing permanent capital solutions to acquire middle-market healthcare service and technology companies. He has over fifteen years of experience as a financial manager, investment banker, and advisor to middle-market companies. He also founded Southeast Acquisition Capital, a company designed to facilitate business ownership transition in the Southeast. Jim is currently president of the Nashville chapter of the Exit Planning Institute (EPI) and serves on the board of the Association of Corporate Growth (ACG) Tennessee.
M&A/Private Equity Practice Leader – South Region
Blake leads the Private Equity/M&A team for the South Region within HUB International. His team performs a full range of M&A insurance services to equity partners including, but not limited to, Property & Casualty, Group Benefits and Retirement Due Diligence, Post-Transaction Brokerage (P&C, Benefits and Retirement), Reps & Warranties placement, Fund Liability and Package Insurance for sponsors, and Group Purchasing Programs. Blake started working in the M&A insurance space in 2008 and has been involved with over 500 transactions in his career. He began his work at a public brokerage, then moved over to The Crichton Group on the independent/private side in 2011. In 2016, he became a partner/owner of that agency, and was part of the team that became part of HUB in July of 2019. With improved bench strength and capabilities, Blake’s role will be to continue to build HUB’s presence, reputation and brand in the M&A space throughout the region and country. Blake received a bachelor’s degree, magna cum laude, in Risk Management and Insurance from the University of Mississippi in 2008.
CEO & President
LBMC W Squared, LLC
Tammy is a founder of W Squared and a partner with LBMC, which acquired W Squared in 2017. She has served first as president and COO and now CEO, for more than 13 years, building the company and providing guidance to the core infrastructure service offerings, with particular emphasis on finance, accounting, human resources and payroll. W Squared leverages scalable back office systems, people and processes typically in place for large companies in an outsourced model for small to medium-sized businesses.
Brentwood Capital Advisors
Founded in 1999 and based in Franklin, TN, BCA is a leading healthcare and technology- focused boutique investment bank that provides mergers and acquisitions and capital raising advice to privately- held, middle market healthcare, technology and tech-enabled outsourced services companies. BCA has served as exclusive financial advisor in 100 successfully completed transactions totaling approximately $6.4 billion in these sectors. Tom’s clients include a number of leading Nashville- based companies such as Acadia Healthcare, Enable Comp, HealthStream, Xtend Healthcare, Standard Functional Foods, Arbor Health, Ascend, ReDoc, eMids, MedHost, Passport Health Communications, and HealthSpring.
Prior to joining BCA, Mr. Wylly had a twenty -year career and served as the Co-Head of the Corporate Finance Department of J.C. Bradford & Company. Tom is the Chairman of the Nashville Capital Network, on the Board of Westminster Home Connection and a former Board member of Teach for America Nashville, Martha O’Bryan Center and the Nashville Healthcare Council. Mr. Wylly received his Bachelor of Science in Commerce from the McIntire School of Commerce at the University of Virginia.