Our Past Speakers
MARK EATON is a successful, award-winning motivational speaker, entrepreneur and best selling author of The Four Commitments of a Winning Team, who has earned the coveted CSP (Certified Speaking Professional) designation, the speaking profession’s highest international measure of professional competence. He has spoken to numerous world-class organizations including IBM, FedEx, Phillips 66, Caesars Entertainment, T-Mobile, LG, and businesses, government agencies and universities at every level. He has been featured as a team-building expert in print and online publications such as Forbes.com, Sports Illustrated and Entrepreneur.com.
Eaton is also a 7′4″ NBA All-Star who played with the Utah Jazz for 12 seasons, led the NBA in blocked shots 4 of those seasons, was named to the NBA All-Defensive Team 5 times, was named NBA Defensive Player of the Year 2 times, and still holds 2 NBA records—most blocks in a single season (456) and career average blocked shots per game (3.5).
In addition to his work on team building, Eaton is managing partner in two award-winning restaurants in Salt Lake City, Tuscany and Franck’s, recently voted Best Restaurant in Utah.
Eaton is founder and former chairman of the Mark Eaton Standing Tall for Youth Foundation, which provided sports and outdoor opportunities for more than 3,000 at-risk children. He is a former president and board member of the Legends of Basketball, which supports the needs of retired NBA players.
Eaton’s television and radio experience includes eight years as host of Jazz Tonight on KJZZ-TV, host of Mark Eaton Outdoors on The Outdoor Channel, and three years as host of Sports Health Today, an internationally syndicated radio show. He attended Cypress College and the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA).
When Mark is not speaking, writing, or working he enjoys traveling with his wife Teri, horseback riding, mountain biking, skiing, and the outdoors. He lives in Park City, Utah with his wife, children, horses, dogs, and barn cats.
Sam Orme is Vice President of Corporate Development at Savage Services. In this role, he is responsible for Savage’s merger and acquisition (M&A) strategy, execution, and development. He has 18 years of experience advising, investing in and acquiring private and public companies around the world in all stages of maturity.
At Savage, he is focused on acquiring and developing logistics, transportation (rail, marine, truck) and environmental and industrial services companies. Mr. Orme has extensive experience working on a variety of corporate development and investment banking transactions including mergers and acquisitions, public offerings, and private equity transactions. He has been involved in transactions with a broad range of privately held companies as well as public companies, including Cargill, Mitsui, PayPal, E*Trade, SunGard, SS&C, Corporate Express, First American, and American Capital. Over his career, he has advised companies on mergers and acquisitions totaling over $6.0 billion in value.
Prior to joining Savage, Mr. Orme worked for D.A. Davidson & Co. as well as Robertson Stephens M&A Group in San Francisco. Before Robertson, Mr. Orme was an accountant at Deloitte & Touché. He holds an M.B.A. from Washington State University and a B.S. in Finance and a minor in Economics from the University of Utah. In 2012, he was named one of the Top 40 Under 40 Investment Bankers by The M&A Advisor.
Mr. Ronald N. Vance has practiced business and securities law since 1981. He began his career in Salt Lake City, Utah, where he developed expertise in the fields of corporate and securities law. After working for several years with Reynolds & Moxley, a small boutique law firm focused on securities and natural resources offerings, Mr. Vance started his own firm representing small and mid-size private and publicly held companies, their officers and directors.
Mr. Vance focuses principally on smaller reporting companies and assists them in their compliance, transactional, and fund raising activities. Mr. Vance represents both target and acquiring companies in reverse mergers and forward mergers, including preparation of deal documents such as Merger Agreements, Stock Purchase Agreements, Asset Purchase Agreements and Reorganization Agreements.
Mr. Vance is well regarded in his field and has built lasting relationships with clients and corporate professionals alike, including accounting and auditing professionals. His approach to client representation is focused on assisting them through the myriad of legal requirements associated with being a public company, including preventing problems before they arise and complying with ongoing changes in the legal field.
Elliot Smith is a partner at the law firm Pearson Butler & Carson, PLLC. He is a licensed attorney and a certified public accountant whose legal practice focuses on business transactions and estate planning. Elliot earned his Bachelor of Science and Master of Accounting degrees from the Marriott School of Management at Brigham Young University and his Juris Doctor degree from Case Western Reserve University.
Elliot has extensive legal, tax and business experience having worked with an international accounting firm in both its federal tax and mergers and acquisition practices as well as with several law firms. Throughout his career he has had the opportunity to work with a diverse clientele ranging from billion dollar companies to professional athletes and has gained significant experience dealing with complex client tax issues. Elliot has a passion for business transactions and works hard to personally know and understand each of his clients so he can create customized plans to protect their families and pass their most important values onto future generations.
In addition to the education listed above, Elliot earned a Master of Science degree in Sports Conditioning and Performance at Southern Utah University and is a certified exercise physiologist with the American College of Sports Medicine.
In his spare time, Elliot enjoys spending time with his family, biking, watching movies, snowshoeing, and fly fishing.
Elliot is married to Rachel and they have two children. They currently live in South Jordan, Utah.
Juliette Tennert, M.A.
Juliette Tennert is the director of economic and public policy research at the Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute, specializing in Utah’s economy, economic forecasting and modeling, fiscal policy analysis and economic impact studies.
Tennert oversees a staff of economists and analysts who study the Utah economy and public policy issues that impact the state. Her most recent work includes state revenue forecasting, labor force analysis, housing and construction research and international trade data analysis.
Before joining the Eccles School, Tennert served as the state budget director and chief economist for Governor Gary Herbert, chief economist for Governor Jon Huntsman and as a fiscal analyst for the Utah State Legislature. Prior to her state service, Tennert was a research analyst for the Center for Business and Economic Research at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV).
Tennert holds a master’s degree in economics from UNLV and a bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of Chicago. She is also an adjunct instructor of public budgeting and finance in the University of Utah’s Master of Public Administration program and has been honored as one of Utah Business Magazine’s annual “30 Women to Watch.”
Einar graduated from Brigham Young University with a Bachelor of Arts in Economics. Upon graduation he joined WordPerfect Corporation, later acquired by Novell, and served as the International Marketing Director for their Consumer Products Division. After eight years of traveling far and wide he decided to pursue his entrepreneurial dreams.
Einar is a business exit plan consultant and financial advisor, assisting business owners in planning for their business exit and determining a strategic pact for improving value and curb appeal. His primary focus is helping businesses and business owners realize their goals and dreams with proper business continuation and succession planning, as well as retirement and estate planning. Einar is actively involved with several businesses helping them achieve their growth and financial objectives, while allowing the business owners to focus on the things they do best – running their business.
Einar is a proud husband and father of 6 children (and two grandchildren). He enjoys sports and the outdoors, and a good action movie. He also manages to keep a pleasant demeanor while watching Hallmark Channel with his wife.
Adam Nugent is the founder of The Foresight Wealth Management, an Independent Registered Investment Advisory firm whose primary goal is to put clients first and provide world-class service that families and businesses couldn’t experience anywhere else.
Early in his career, Adam recognized that the financial industry as a whole was doing a poor job in helping people manage their money and finances. More importantly, they were doing a real disservice in ongoing communication, service, excessive fees, and overall customer experience.
Adam founded Foresight on the principle that service can be done better and that people deserve a lot more than what most had been receiving and paying for. His effective leadership and innovative thinking, as well as the company’s commitment to be driven by transparency and flexibility, has spurred Foresight to become one of the fastest growing investment management firms in Utah.
Foresight’s mission to provide the highest probability of financial success drives Adam to work tirelessly towards his clients’ goals and plot a course to secure their futures. Adam loves working together with his clients to maintain and improve the standard of living they are accustomed to as well as preserving their estate for generations to come.
My mission, and the mission of Tanner LLC, is to have a positive impact in the lives of those with whom we interact with on a daily basis.
My career has been focused on the individual assessment, coaching and development of leaders in North America and throughout the World. These organizations can range from large multi-national businesses like Bayer, Petrol Valves, to smaller sole proprietor CPA Firms in the Dominican Republic.
I am an avid collector of Harley Davidsons and classic cars that include a 1937 Ford and a 1960 Cadillac Sedan DeVille. My biggest joy in life comes from spending time with my Wife, Son and Daughter working on, restoring, and enjoying this collection.
Mark J. Marshall is cofounder and CEO of The Accend Group Holdings, Inc. This USA based company, along with its wholly owned subsidiary, Eco Pallet, Pvt Ltd, owns a materials science based, IP protected 7 lbs. logistics pallet that is used by numerous multinational pharma and other manufacturing companies. As CEO, he oversees the Company’s strategic growth plans, capital raises, and corporate operations. Previously Mark has been the CEO, COO, and CFO of international companies spanning hardware, security software, medical devices, and other high-tech, high-growth endeavors.
Before cofounding Eco, his role as CEO of The Accend Group – a fractional CFO firm, allowed Mark to architect operations and financial strategies for a variety of clients, managing over $300 million in investments and the financial affairs of more than 45 start-up technology and high-growth companies. The resulting exits from these efforts produced over $1 billion in returns for the founders and investors. Prior to these activities, Mark obtained his CPA designation in 1994 and was active as a CPA until 2006. Prior to that, he earned both his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Accounting and Finance from Brigham Young University.
Scott Huntsman is the Chief Executive Officer for Martin Door Manufacturing. Scott spent the first 11 years of his career as an investment banker on Wall Street, executing M&A and capital raising transactions for Credit Suisse, Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette and Drexel Burnham Lambert. In 2002, Scott moved from New York City to Salt Lake City, where he acquired GlobalSim, a heavy equipment simulation company. Scott eventually sold GlobalSim to Kongsberg Groupen (OSLO: KOG.OL), a Norwegian multinational company, for 22x the original investment in GlobalSim. Scott earned his BA from Columbia University and MBA from the Wharton School of Business.
Dr David Gruder
Dr. Gruder is an 12-time award-winning clinical and organizational psychologist whose mission
is making integrity profitable, leadership elevated, collaboration productive, happiness sustainable, and society healthy. In addition to his leadership roles, he provides keynotes, training programs and consulting.
He is the President of Integrity Culture SystemsTM, the Executive Director of the California Institute for Human Science’s Center for Integral Leadership, the M&A Psychologist for Blue Sky Business Resources, the Executive Success Psychologist for Executive Strategy & Skillset Summits, a core faculty with CEO Space International, and a Certified Elder with ManKind Project International.
He was also the founding president of the Association for Comprehensive Energy Psychology. He is a trusted advisor to leaders, entrepreneurs and businesses, and co-authors books with high profile individuals wanting to embed psychological wisdom in their content.
In all, he has been featured in 23 books as an author, co-author, psychology editor, writer of forewords and afterwords, chapter writer, or cited expert.
Mr. Henley is currently the Managing Partner of Rubicon Capital Consultants (RCC). RCC focuses on bridging the gap between successful companies and the “right” value added financial partner. RCC geographical expertise is in the western United States with an emphasis in the Intermountain West. Although Mr Henley has owned many small businesses he cut his teeth with Sorenson Capital, which has over a billion dollars under management. He joined Sorenson Capital Partners (SCP) as the VP of Marketing in May 2011 and, through his well-established networks, focused on the firm’s sourcing and marketing efforts. During that time and to this date he still consults with SCP in the area of M & A. Prior to joining Sorenson Capital, he was Associate Director with the Office of the President at Brigham Young University where he worked very closely with the national business community in major fundraising projects. Mr. Henley’s background includes 17 years with Amgen Biotech and 4 years with Pfizer. He started carrying a bag and eventually was promoted to numerous positions in Corporate Accounts over Integrated Health Systems and also Government contracts.
Zak Nugent is the Chief Executive Officer of Scalar and has been involved in all phases of the firm’s development since joining in 2009. He has overseen more than 7,500 valuation engagements for tax, financial reporting, transaction advisory, and litigation consulting purposes.
Zak has provided valuation consulting to management teams and boards of directors for deferred compensation, purchase price accounting, mergers and acquisitions, capital fundraising, secondary transactions, equity buybacks, shareholder disputes, and succession planning. Zak currently sits on the board of directors for Excalibur Industries, Inc. Zak received his Bachelor of Science in Economics from the University of Utah. He also holds the Certified Valuation Analyst (CVA) credential from the National Association of Certified Valuators and Analysts.
Alan Lewis has decades of experience in the financial industry as an equity fund manager. Alan has worked with top tier firms, founded/co-founded two asset management businesses, and has extensive experience in private equity and real estate.
Throughout his experience, Alan’s responsibilities have included asset allocation, investment selection process, selection and oversight of fund managers and analysts. Alan has also developed and managed operations, financial control, risk management, compliance and marketing functions.
Randy Casper has spent the last 40 years developing the leading watersports pro shop, boat dealership and parts company in the state of Utah. Combining his great passion for the marine industry with his unrelenting drive and leadership, he has created a historic brand that all Utahn’s can enjoy: Marine Products. After repeatedly being recognized by all corners of the marine industry, Randy made a successful exit in 2017, but remains fully engaged with the business he built while traveling and engaging in Commercial Real Estate investing.
David K. Williams is the founder and chairman of DKW Ventures. David is a serial entrepreneur and executive who has led multiple companies to success, including the successful launch of Restore Cyrotherapy’s first Utah location and nearly 13 years as Chairman and CEO of Fishbowl, an industry leading manufacturing and warehouse management software company.
David was honored as one of vSpring Capital’s Top 100 Venture Capital Entrepreneurs in 2011, 2012, and 2014 and was also awarded the Excellence in Leadership Award at Utah Valley University’s Woodbury School of Business in 2014. In March 2017, he was named an Inc. Magazine Top 10 Global CEO, and in January, 2018 DesignMatic named him one of the 20 Most Motivational Entrepreneurs Who Inspired Us in 2017. As the former CEO of Franklin Quest Canada, and then Managing Director at the Covey Leadership Center, David is passionate about helping businesses succeed. He frequently presents public workshops at various Chambers of Commerce and for University MBA classes.
David currently serves on the board of trustees for Rocky Mountain University of Health Professions on the Finance subcommittee, and is the author of The 7 Non-Negotiables of Winning – Tying Soft Traits to Hard Results. He is a nationally recognized media personality and thought leader with a significant social media following. In addition, he is a frequent contributor to the Harvard Business Review online and the Entrepreneur’s Channel on Forbes.com.
Reed has over 18 years of experience in public accounting with deep expertise with high-growth companies including Beauty Industry Group, BambooHR, C7 Data Centers, ExpertVoice, Jive Communications, Lucid Software, and Soutionreach. He is frequently engaged to perform transactional due diligence by investors. Reed received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in accounting from Weber State University, and is a member of both the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the Utah Association of Certified Public Accountants. Reed is the Vice Chairman of the MountainWest Capital Network and is on the Advisory Board of the Weber State University School of Accountancy.
Chris Badger is a Partner of NOW CFO and is the outsourced Chief Financial Officer for multiple companies.
Chris has extensive experience in strategic management, external financial reporting, support for Boards and investor relationships. Chris holds a BA in accounting with a minor in Military Science from the University of Utah and an MBA from Keller Graduate School of Business. Chris is also a licensed Certified Public Accountant.
In addition to his accounting expertise Chris has extensive experience in Human Resources, health insurance benefits, retirement plans including 401(k)s, Top Hat plans, ESOPs and Qualified and Non-Qualified Profit Sharing Plans. Chris has also managed and directed the IT functions and back office support for high tech, manufacturing and service oriented companies.
Chris is a Utah native and resides in South Jordan Utah with his wife Christine. They have three children. Chris is active in volunteer work with the Boy Scouts of America and his church.
Bill Kirth is currently a Senior Vice President of Sterling Commercial Credit. Bill has 30 years of experience in traditional banking, auditing, bank compliance, asset-based lending, factoring, entrepreneurship and private equity.
Bill has previously worked for Zions Bank, First Interstate Bank, Wells Fargo, and GE Capital and Summit Financial. He has taught courses and has published material on asset based lending and banking for RMA, Lorman Education, Goldman Sachs and many other panels and seminars. He currently serves on the board of RMA (Risk Management Association) Utah Chapter, TMA (Turnaround Management Association) Utah Chapter (as a founder) and ACG Association for Corporate Growth) Utah Chapter (as a founder) as well as other boards of companies that he has invested in. He had previously served on the national RMA membership board for 4 years.
Bill also manages his own private equity fund which currently holds equity positions in 6 companies. He has owned and sold other businesses during his career and has had extensive experience in financing both early-stage, high-growth companies as well as turnaround companies.
Bill holds a green belt in Six Sigma and a black belt in Tae Kwon Do
Troy Tucker, is an Accredited Business Intermediary, Certified Mergers and Acquisition Professional and a Senior Valuation Analyst at Blue Sky Business Resources in Sandy, Utah.
He is a consummate professional, dedicated to providing confidential and dedicated service to his clients and peers.
Troy has started, developed and managed several businesses, and is currently running multiple enterprises. Additionally, he has worked as a professional sales executive working in healthcare, construction, manufacturing, and software.
He enjoys working with transitioning business owners and entrepreneurs brokering / developing business concepts or franchises. He is a member of the American Business Brokers Association, International Business Brokers Association, and Mergers & Acquisitions Source.
Jason Tuzinkewich is the CEO of Blue Sky Capital Resources. Jason has 20 years of professional experience in business operations and development. Having spent his entire career as an entrepreneur and business transformation consultant, he is well positioned to guide other business owners through their M&A options while coordinating all efforts to help ensure a successful outcome for each and every one of his clients.
Jason specializes in translating functions into repeatable processes and optimizing them for specific applications. His work in restaurant development and optimization, as well as his work in alternative fuel technology found success based entirely on Jason’s process optimization skill set.
Dan Griffiths, CPA, CGMA is a partner at Tanner, LLC, a Salt Lake City-based CPA firm with 150 team members where he leads the firm’s advisory service lines. Dan is a business coach and consultant and facilitates over 75 owner, board, and executive team retreats each year across a variety of industries. He specializes in business strategy, succession & exit planning, team performance, and leadership development. He currently serves as a member of the AICPA board of directors. He holds B.S. and Masters of Accountancy degrees from Brigham Young University, summa cum laude and with high distinction, respectively. Dan is an avid flyfisher, backpacker, and gardener. He and his wife Bibiana are the proud parents of four children.