- John Algie, BSBA '03; JD '09
John Algie, BSBA '03; JD '09
Business Alumni Association Board of Directors
Corporate Associate, Reed Smith
John Algie is a mergers & acquisitions attorney in the Pittsburgh office of Reed Smith and has particular experience with professional sports teams, private equity funds and start-ups. John also places an emphasis in his practice on corporate law, governance, and general corporate counseling for privately-held clients.
He previously spent time in the Cleveland office of Jones Day in a similar role, and as the President and General Manager of the Ohio Machine of Major League Lacrosse (MLL).
In his three and a half years at the helm of the Machine, John guided the team to success on and off the field. Off the field, John secured partnerships with The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center, Skyline Chili, Donatos Pizza and many more. On the field, John built the Machine roster through the collegiate and supplemental drafts and through key player acquisitions via trades and waiver additions. In 2014, the Machine led Major League Lacrosse (MLL) in offense and made the MLL Playoffs for the first time in club history.
John also spent three years as the MLL's Director of League Operations where his responsibilities included implementation and enforcement of the League's on-field and player personnel rules, college and pro player scouting, and game operations management. John was also one of the primary catalysts for the MLL's change from a 45-second to the 60-second shot clock that has been in effect since the 2005 season.
John earned his Master of Business Administration from the Joseph M. Katz Graduate School of Business and his Bachelor of Science in Finance from the College of Business Administration. He also graduated magna cum laude from the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. John is a member of the national honor societies of Beta Gamma Sigma, Order of the Coif and Omicron Delta Kappa, and is a member of the Sports Lawyers Association.
A native of Long Island, New York, John was also a member of Pitt's lacrosse team. He currently resides in Ross Township with his wife and two children.
- Hollie Baker, Jr., MBA '02
Hollie Baker, Jr., MBA '02
Business Alumni Association Board of Directors
Director Logistics, Caleres, Inc.
Hollie manages all operations of a 500K+ square foot distribution center, servicing Famous Footwear stores in the Eastern Region and E-commerce customers across the United States.
Previously, Hollie was an Operations Manager in the Supply Chain & Logistics Division of Walgreens, headquartered just north of Chicago, IL. He has over 15 years of experience in Operations Management across several industries, including Automotive, Defense, Aluminum, e-Commerce and Pharmaceutical. He has been with Walgreens for 5 years, starting in the Pharmacy Services Division, where he was a Sr. Manager of Fulfillment at a location in Orlando, FL. Hollie has an extensive background in the areas of Six-Sigma, Lean Manufacturing and Continuous Improvement. He has done work for Texas Instruments, General Motors and Amazon.com.
He earned his MBA at Katz, focusing on Operations Management and Strategy. He also holds a B.S. in Industrial Engineering from North Carolina A&T State University in Greensboro, NC. In his spare time he is a Certified Tennis Pro and enjoys introducing youth of all ages and abilities to the great game of Tennis! He currently resides in Mansfield, TX with his wife Lauren and their children Hollie III (a.k.a. "Trey") and Olivia.
- Steve Bauer, BSBA '01
Steve Bauer, BSBA '01
Director of Web Marketing, Arhaus
CBA Advisory Board Representative
- Mary Binker, MBA, JD '10
Mary Binker, MBA JD '10
- Fabio Boucinhas, MBA '05
Fabio Boucinhas, MBA '05
CEO and Founder
Fabio Boucinhas previously ran the digital strategy of Natura, the No. 1 cosmetics manufacturer in Brazil. Prior to Natura, Mr. Boucinhas was the Products Director of Yahoo! Brazil.
Mr. Boucinhas is the president of the Katz Alumni Association in Brazil and is involved with volunteer work.
- Ian Buggs, BSBA '03
Ian Buggs, BSBA '03
Associate Manager of FP&A of Africa Middle East
Ian is currently working for Pfizer, Inc. based in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. He is Associate Manager of FP&A of Africa Middle East. Prior to his current role, Ian completed Pfizer’s 2 year post-MBA finance rotational program based in New York City. His previous work experience included Corporate Recruiter and Financial Analyst for MEDRAD, Inc. (a division of Bayer Healthcare) from 2006-2009.
Ian earned his BSBA in Finance from the College of Business Administration in 2003 with a minor in Economics supplemented with a Certificate in International Business and a Certificate of Western European Studies. After completing his Bachelor's degree, he earned his MPIA from the Graduate School of Public and International Affairs (GSPIA) at the University of Pittsburgh majoring in the Global Political Economy. In 2011, Ian earned his MBA from the Tepper School of Business at Carnegie Mellon University concentrating in Finance, Economics, Accounting, and Marketing.
- Scott Casciato, MBA '09
Scott Casciato, MBA '09
DICK'S Sporting Goods
- Tricina Cash (EMBA '09)
Tricina Cash, EMBA '09
Distinguished Service Awardee
Strategic Initiatives and Business Consultant; President, Pitt Black MBA Network (PBAN)
Tricina Cash is a Projects Leader and Business Development Consultant, with past clients and engagements including Urban Innovation21, SolePower, FedEx Ground, and Highmark Health.
Previously, she was the Director of Operations, Conference Management, and Business Development for the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC) Center for Continuing Education in the Health Sciences. In this role, she produced multi-disciplinary, national medical conferences across the United States and abroad, and she developed and led the enterprise-wide centralization of a grants management system.
Ms. Cash is a co-founding officer of the Pitt Black MBA Network (PBAN), an independent, global alumni network of the Katz School that was established in 2010. The group's mission is to support the prominence of the Katz School, especially in its recruitment of diverse MBA applicants. Ms. Cash was the first woman elected as PBAN board chair and president, and is the first member elected to serve two terms. During her tenure, she has led PBAN in establishing and developing a scholarship goal that is on track to surpass $1 million scholarships given by 2017 and also created an Ambassador program to connect alumni and students.
Ms. Cash sits on the Board of Directors of the Children's Museum of Pittsburgh and the Pitt Business Alumni Association. She is a former member of the University of Pittsburgh Alumni Association's Alumni Leadership Council, the Junior League of Pittsburgh, and the National Black MBA Association--Pittsburgh Chapter.
Ms. Cash also earned a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Pittsburgh.
- Pat Cavanaugh, BSBA '90, MBA '93
Pat Cavanaugh, BSBA '90, MBA '93
Founder & President
The Cavanaugh Marketing Network
The Crons Brand
Come Ready Nutrition
Pat Cavanaugh founded The Cavanaugh Marketing Network in 1994 after earning both a B.S. in Economics (1990) and MBA (1993) from the University of Pittsburgh.
In five short years, Mr. Cavanaugh led his firm to become ranked in the Top 1% of its industry on its way to being named an Inc. 500 company for three consecutive years.
In cementing his role and reputation as an entrepreneurial leader, Mr. Cavanaugh was named an Ernst &Young Entrepreneur-of-the-Year and inducted into its national Entrepreneur Hall of Fame. He has been featured in national and local business publications including Inc. Magazine, Sales & Marketing Management, and the Pittsburgh Business Times.
Mr. Cavanaugh founded The Crons Brand in 1996. Crons is a mentality brand of athletic apparel dedicated to motivating people to focus on setting and achieving their goals. Mr. Cavanaugh and The Crons Brand have been featured in both the local and national media including the New York Times, Huffington Post, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, CNBC, Forbes.com and Fox Business News.
Mr. Cavanaugh developed the Crons Achievers Program, goal education curriculum for secondary school students focusing on the importance of goals and how to best set and achieve them. The program has been implemented in a number of schools in Pennsylvania, New York, Utah, California and in the country of Singapore. His Goals &Adversity Training Program has been used by a number of athletic organizations to motivate young athletes to achieve their goals, both in competition and in the classroom.
In 2011 Mr. Cavanaugh founded Come Ready Nutrition, a sports nutrition company dedicated to preparing athletes for competition, allowing them to feel and perform at their best with safe and effective sport nutritional products. The company’s Come Ready Protein Bars are sold nationally in over 5,000 retail locations and overseas in 10 countries across 5 continents. Come Ready Bars have also been used by over 50 of the top NCAA collegiate athletic programs in the country.
Mr. Cavanaugh is a former NCAA Division 1 athlete, joining the University of Pittsburgh basketball team as a non-scholarship walk-on, earning a scholarship his freshman year, and being named a two-year team captain on two Top 10 Panthers squads.
- Sara Conroy, BSBA '07
Sara Conroy, BSBA '07
Assistant Professor of Accounting
Community College of Allegheny County
Sara Conroy is an assistant professor of accounting at the Community College of Allegheny County (CCAC). She graduated with her masters in taxation from Robert Morris University, and her bachelor's in accounting from the University of Pittsburgh's College of Business Administration.
As a junior at Pitt, she began her accounting career as an intern at PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), officially joining the accounting firm as a tax associate after graduating. While there, she was recognized as one of the top 30 associates in the country, as well as being part of a fly-in national consulting team.
In 2010, she became a senior tax analyst for the firm Global Tax Management (GTM). In 2012, she helped create a presentation for a federal tax update for software at the national Corptax Users' Conference.
In her roles at PwC and GTM, she was involved in researching federal and state tax laws, worked on special consulting projects in the oil and gas industry, as well as responsible for presenting new tax software programs to clients.
After working at GTM for two years, Conroy decided to make a career change and move from the public accounting field into education, becoming an instructor of accounting at CCAC, the first female to ever hold a full-time accounting position at the south campus. She currently teaches courses in accounting, finance, economics, tax, and business law.
While at CCAC, Conroy started the Accounting and Business Club, has been on various hiring committees, a member of the Business Advisory Board, and worked as an academic advisor. She was awarded with Advisor of the Year in 2014 for her efforts.
In addition, Conroy is a member of the Pitt Business Alumnae Council.
Conroy lives in Pittsburgh with her husband, John; their dog, Remington; and three cats, Mishka, Saiorse, and Elysia.
- Randy Eager
Founder and Managing Partner
Randy has almost 30 years of successful start-up, product commercialization, and management experience in a wide range of companies and industries. In two years as CEO of his third start-up and second CMU spin-off, ATRP Solutions, he raised $1.5M, took the company from prototype to 12 beta sites and a distribution agreement. This advanced materials company invents new molecules and utilizes contract manufacturers to produce unique polymeric ingredients for several industries.
Prior to ATRP Solutions, Randy led an investment in ATRP Solutions while an Executive in Residence at Innovation Works, where he worked with the management teams of start-up technology companies to identify and address critical business issues. He led investments in 15 companies, all of which have raised additional capital and have introduced products.
Prior to Innovation Works, Randy co-founded his second company, DesignAdvance Systems, a CMU spin-off that he led as CEO from company inception to successfully raising over $7 million, building a team, and securing contracts from Cisco, Intel, Motorola, and Apple, all in less than 2 years. DesignAdvance produced Electronic Design Automation (EDA) software and was acquired by its North American distributor.
Prior to DesignAdvance, Randy was a Licensing Officer at CMU, where he licensed technology to industry and worked with Carnegie Mellon faculty to spin companies out of the university.
He has also spent four years as a management consultant at General Management Technologies, where he focused on developing strategic plans for divisional presidents of Fortune 1,000 companies including Master Lock, Coleman, and Sunbeam.
Prior to GMT, Randy spent seven years building a small business unit for BASF Corporation; he introduced a new polymer to the North American market and grew it to $17 million in annual revenue. This included building a small team and two manufacturing facilities. While at BASF, he lived and worked at the corporate headquarters in Germany for the first year.
Randy took on the VP of Sales and Marketing role in his first start-up in Boston called Tri-Tech following the BASF experience. Tri-Tech was also a specialty polymer business that addressed a market need that BASF was ignoring.
Randy has a bachelor's degree in Packaging Engineering from Michigan State and an MBA from the University of Pittsburgh's Katz School.
- Linda Fisher, MBA '93
Linda J. Fisher (MBA '93)
Vice President, Farmers National Bank of Emlenton
Linda Fisher is a Commercial Real Estate Portfolio Manager at TriState Capital Bank. Previously, she worked as an Assistant Vice President in the Commercial Real Estate Lending and Services Division of Dollar Bank in Pittsburgh. She has over twenty years of wide-ranging experience in the commercial real estate industry, having worked in property tax consulting, development and brokerage, eventually leveraging her prior knowledge and experience in real estate into her career in banking. At Dollar, she is responsible overseeing the underwriting, risk assessment and compliance for Dollar Bank's $500 million commercial real estate loan portfolio, which includes property types such as office, retail, industrial, multi-family, single-family subdivisions and land development.
Linda received her undergraduate degree from Seton Hill College in Greensburg, Pennsylvania and earned her MBA from the Katz Graduate School of Business in 1993. She is an active member in the Pittsburgh Chapter of the Commercial Real Estate Development Organization - NAIOP - where she currently is a member of the Board of Directors and has been involved in several committees, including serving as co-chair for the 2012 Annual Awards Banquet held at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center, which annually showcases commercial real estate development achievements within the Pittsburgh region. She also is a member of Commercial Real Estate Women (CREW) Pittsburgh and maintains an active Pennsylvania real estate salesperson license.
In addition to serving on the Business Alumni Association Board, Linda meets frequently with students interested in careers in commercial real estate finance and serves in an advisory role to the Katz Real Estate Club. She also has been a proud supporter of Pitt football, and especially the Varsity Marching Band (her daughter - a Swanson School of Engineering graduate - was a member from 2004-2008).
- Nick Fischer
Nicholas (Nick) Fischer
CEO, Cadilus Inc.
Senior Vice President and CEO, The Betteridge Jewelers Group
Nick is currently the CEO of Cadilus, Inc., a managed service and consulting firm serving the middle-markets. Nick is also the acting Senior Vice President & CFO of The Betteridge Jewelers Group, a middle-market luxury retailer where he is a member of the Betteridge executive team, with functional responsibility of corporate strategy, FP&A, accounting, treasury, and HR.
A transformational executive with diverse industry experience spanning retail, financial services, and consumer packaged goods, Nick brings both a strategic & operational perspective with particular strengths in leading change to drive organizational improvement. With his extensive experience across Fortune 500 and middle-market organizations, Nick has spent the majority of his career redefining the traditional role of finance as a true strategic partner and organizational catalyst.
- Laura Freedman, EMBA '12
Laura Freedman, EMBA '12
Alumnae Council Representative
Laura is a financial advisor and public speaker who specializes in executive financial planning and working with women to become informed and engaged in long term financial decision-making. Prior to her role as a financial and investments advisor, she was a Senior Human Resource Executive and Executive Consultant. Laura brings over 25 years of experience advising leaders on business strategy and mitigating risk. Laura holds a Masters in Business Administration from the University of Pittsburgh Katz School of Business and is a Certified Executive Coach.
In addition to her career, Laura is actively involved in the community. She serves on the Regional Board of Directors of Strong a Women Strong Girls which creates mentoring relationships between college women and pre-adolescent girls in underserved local communities to help raise ambition and combat the dangers of low self-esteem. She is also President of the Katz Business Alumnae Council which creates opportunities for Alumnae, undergraduate and MBA students and share professional strategies and experiences while building meaningful relationships.
Laura and her husband live in the South Hills, have 20-year-old twins and a very large dog.
- Julie Fuelsday
Business Alumni Association Board of Directors
DICK'S Sporting Goods
Julie is currently a merchandise planner for field & stream footwear and general accessories at DICK'S Sporting Goods. She previously worked as an associate merchandise planner supporting the Aerie brand at American Eagle Outfitters in Pittsburgh and for Matchpoint Marketing as a strategic planner for the consumer packaged goods industry. She completed the two-year full-time program at Katz in 2010 with a concentration in Marketing, and earned her undergraduate degree from the University of Richmond in Virginia with a double major in Theater and Communications. Julie and her husband, Brett, currently live in Wexford, PA.
- James Gaslevic
Office of New Reactors
U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission
Mr. Gaslevic currently provides technical support for the Division of Construction Inspection in the Office of New Reactors at the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission in Rockville Maryland. He recently completed a rotational assignment as a financial analyst in the NRC's Office of Nuclear Reactor Regulation. He holds both a bachelors degree in Civil Engineering from the University of Pittsburgh, as well as an MBA from Pitt's Katz Graduate School of Business with a concentration in finance. Mr. Gaslevic also has 12 years of experience in Civil and Environmental Engineering consulting, and holds a professional engineering license in Civil Engineering. Before joining the NRC, Mr. Gaslevic attended the U.S. Postal Service's managerial internship in Baltimore Maryland.
- Robert Grossic
Senior Strategy Consultant
Robert Grossic is currently a Senior Strategy Consultant at Highmark Inc. who is focused on developing and implementing a portfolio of strategic solutions within the Government Markets Healthcare space. More specifically, he assists with optimizing health plan operations across WV, Delaware, and Pennsylvania Markets for Medicare and Medicaid Plans owned and operated by Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield.
Before his transition from Washington, DC back to Pittsburgh in 2014, Robert was a Strategy consultant for PRTM Management Consultants LLC, and through a 2011 merger with PwC became a member of the Public sector practice of Pricewaterhouse Coopers LCC. During his time with PRTM and PwC, Robert assisted and led numerous engagements across multiple industries including the Financial/Mortgage industry, the Defense Industrial Base, NY State, the US ARMY, US TRANSCOM, and the Federal Aviation Administration. Furthermore, he also led a ~16 month engagement within the Pentagon acting as the “Chief of Staff” to the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Maintenance Planning and Policy (DASD MP&P) whose office oversees and influences operations for ~$90B in annual maintenance, logistics, and sustainment spend.
Additionally, he also participated in three combat tours with the 82nd Airborne Division to Southeast Asia and also acted as an “Advanced Camp” ROTC Instructor for the US Army.
Robert earned a Master of Business Administration and a Bachelor of Science in Marketing from the University of Pittsburgh and routinely returns for speaking and mentoring events.
- Carol Haines
Thomas Jefferson University Hospitals
Carol Haines is a Registered Nurse and Process Consultant focusing on pharmacy strategy across the UPMC organization since joining in 2010. A graduate of Rutgers College of Nursing, Carol’s nursing career has included supervisory positions in both clinical nursing and case management. Her interest in process improvement and project management led her to earn a Sigma Six Green Belt as well as PMP certification from the Project Management Institute. Pursuing her MBA from the University of Pittsburgh’s Katz School of Business, Carol graduated as class president and was awarded “student of the year” honors. As a transplant to Pittsburgh, Carol loves city life, as well as golf, hiking, cycling, and kayaking on the three rivers.
- Dr. Archana Hingorani
Dr. Archana Hingorani
CEO and Executive Director
IL&FS Investment Managers Limited
Dr. Hingorani, has over 28 years experience in the financial services business, teaching and research. Her focus has been on private equity, project finance and financial structuring, with a specialization in infrastructure, manufacturing and real estate projects. She has been with the IL&FS Group for 21 years, and has performed a multitude of roles – starting off as an economist and moving on to project finance, and asset management. Dr. Hingorani’s focus over the last 19 years has been on private equity fund management. She is one of the founding members of the IL&FS private equity business and has overseen investments with an aggregate capitalization value in excess of US$ 15 bn. In her present role as Chief Executive Officer, she leads an investment team of around 75 professionals.
Dr Hingorani is a graduate of University of Bombay and holds a MBA and Ph.D. in Finance from the University of Pittsburgh. Dr Hingorani is a member of the India CEO Forum, affiliated with International Market Assessment, Asia (IMA), Young Presidents Organization (Mumbai Chapter), and of the United Nations Environment Programme, Finance Initiative and the Finance Commission, Asia representative. She also serves on the Advisory Council of EMPEA for Asia.
Dr Hingorani has been awarded the "Ten most influential women in private real estate investing" by PERE in 2010, "Most Powerful Women" 2011, 2012 and 2013 by Business Today (an Indian publication). Recently, Dr Hingorani was selected among the top 25 most influential women in Asia Asset Management by Asian Investor.
Dr Hingorani currently resides in Mumbai, India.
IL&FS Investment Managers is India’s largest domestic private equity fund manager with US$ 3.2 bn under management across growth, private equity, infrastructure and real estate.
- Samantha Hollack
Group Director of Financial Planning and Analysis
Samantha is currently the Group Director of Financial Planning and Analysis at Polyconcept in New Kensington. Previously, she worked as a Senior Manager of Finance, supporting the strategic initiatives of supply chain and real estate at American Eagle Outfitters in Pittsburgh. In the past, she has also worked at Dick's Sporting Goods and LANXESS in financial analyst roles. She completed the one-year program at Katz in 2004 with a concentration in Finance, and earned her undergraduate degree from Columbia College in Columbia, SC with a double major in Business Administration and Accounting. She lives in the neighborhood of East Liberty with her husband, Jeff.
- Christine M. Kretz
Research Industry Leader
Computational Biology Center
Christine Kretz is the Research Industry Leader for the Computational biology Center in IBM Research. Christine’s role is to help coordinate client interest with the team’s experience and expertise and help coordinate projects for mutually beneficial outcomes.
Most recently, she was the Business Development Leader for IBM Watson Solutions for Healthcare, working with clients to find compelling uses for this new technology in the healthcare space.
Joining IBM in 1998 as a Manager in the Research Division, Christine had Information Technology responsibilities including Y2K readiness and IT security for eight labs globally. From Research, Christine took a corporate position and was named the Global Operations Manager for IBM Life Sciences, an emerging business area for IBM. Christine has also held the positions of Healthcare Solutions Executive on the IBM Global Healthcare Industry team, and roles as a Client Executive and Complex Opportunity Manager in Healthcare/Life Sciences.
Christine holds a BFA from Carnegie Mellon University and an MBA in Operations from the University of Pittsburgh Katz Graduate School of Business.
- Ang Lee
EverPoint Asset Management
Ang is a Research Analyst at EverPoint Asset Management. Ang focuses on public equity investments in the consumer retail industry. Prior to joining EverPoint, Ang worked at SAC Capital, a leading global long/short hedge fund and Thoma Bravo, a tech-focused private equity firm, and in the Mergers & Acquisitions groups at Greenhill and Jefferies. Both based in New York. Ang received a BSBA in Finance and Accounting with a minor in Economics from the University of Pittsburgh, where he was the recipient of the Alumni Council Leadership Award.
- Victor Loayza, MBA '89
Victor Loayza, MBA '89
Gateway Energy Services Ltd.
Victor Loayza serves as General Manager at Gateway Energy Services Ltd., a Canadian subsidiary of Gateway Energy Services Corporation. Victor has served as President of Hudbay Peru at Hudbay Minerals, Inc. since September 2011.
Victor has more than 25 years of experience in the energy and financial industries and, for the past 12 years, has held highly ranked positions with energy organizations including the Ontario Power Authority and the Ontario Energy Board.
- Antonia Lukacinova, EMBA '09
Antonia Lukacinova, EMBA '09
Founder and Member of Advisory Board, Sapphire Pegasus Awards
Executive Director, MEDIA Tribune
Antonia Lukacinova has worked in professional sales and marketing more than 15 years. Throughout her broad career she has gained experiences in various fields and developed a deep knowledge of business and marketing, PR and sales. She has worked not only in agencies and in the media industry, but also o as an entrepreneur. Putting experience into practice, Antonia provides clients clear and measurable results.
In mid-2010, Antonia founded her own company MEDIA Tribune. Her experience and skills are now available to benefit her clients.
Antonia is a member of a wide range e of business and management organizations, including the Czech Management Association, Business and Professional Women Czech Republic, the International Business Forum, Women in Aviation, and the Association of Business Sports. She is also a member of both the British and American Chambers of Commerce.
- Kazunobu Nakao
Nakao International Human Resource Consulting
Kazunobu ("Kazu") Nakao was born and grew up in Itami, Hyogo, Japan.
In 1988, he earned a Bachelor of Sociology in Journalism and Sociology from Kwansei Gakuin University in Japan.
He started his career as a human resource (HR) magazine editor, an HR communications consultant, and a training /HR development specialist with Kansai Employers' Association (which was then a major HR-related economic organization in Osaka, Japan and is now incorporated into Kansai Economic Federation).
After five years with the organization, he was admitted to the Joseph M. Katz Graduate School of Business. In 1994, he earned the Master of Business Administration in Strategic Planning and Organization/Human Resource Management from the school.
Upon graduating, he returned to Japan and served as a chief consultant and a director at HR management consulting firms in Osaka for several years.
In 2000, he accepted the position of manager, HR Strategies Group, at Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu, starting in Tokyo. A year later, he was transferred to New York City, where he was responsible for providing HR strategies consulting to Japanese companies in the United States.
In 2004, he left Deloitte and started his own consulting business (Nakao International Human Resource Consulting) based in Fort Lee, New Jersey. He provides general HR strategies consulting for Japanese companies operating in the United States as well as their headquarters in Japan.
He serves on the Pitt Business Alumni Board of Directors and is the representative for the KGSB Japan Alumni Network. He is also a member of the Society for Human Resource Management.
He is a true cosmopolitan, having traveled through more than 40 countries on business or for pleasure. He is also an avid sports fan, particularly the Pittsburgh Steelers, the University of Pittsburgh Panthers football and basketball teams, Japan's Hanshin Tigers (baseball), and the Olympics.
- Lisa M. Polar, MBA '98
Lisa Polar, MBA '98
Vice President, Talent Systems Manager, Ketchum
Lisa Polar is the Talent Systems Manager at Ketchum, a global public relations agency, where she is responsible for the recruiting and learning management systems used by Ketchum and its complementary businesses in North American, Europe, Africa, and Asia. She has 20 years of experience in human resources administrative functions, working in the areas of talent management, benefits, policy and plan administration, legal compliance, analysis/reporting, vendor relationship management, employee communications, and client service. She has worked for various types of employers including a professional services firm, an employer coalition, the trust department of a large bank, and a metals service center.
Lisa has a Bachelor of Science degree in mathematics from Grove City College and a Master of Business Administration degree from the University of Pittsburgh Katz Graduate School of Business, where she serves on the executive committee of the Alumni Board. She earned the Certified Employee Benefit Specialist professional certification co-sponsored by The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and the International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans. Lisa resides in Pittsburgh with her husband and three children.
- William Price, BSBA '98, JD '03
William Price, BSBA '98, JD '03
Member, Clark Hill PLC
Bill is a Member at Clark Hill PLC, an AmLaw 200 law firm with over 350 attorneys in thirteen offices. Clark Hill is a full-service law firm with approximately $140 million in annual revenue. Bill is a member of Clark Hill’s Corporate Restructuring and Bankruptcy Practice Group in its Pittsburgh office.
Bill’s law practice is diverse in nature and regularly encounters matters with crisis and complicated legal and media issues. In just the last three years, Bill has had a direct, and often lead, role in the following representations—the State of Maine to uphold the “public interest” in connection with the Montreal Maine & Atlantic Railway bankruptcy following the catastrophic railway disaster in Canada with over 40 casualties, Detroit Pension Plans in the City of Detroit bankruptcy, the City of Pittsburgh through the Urban Redevelopment Authority with regard to the August Wilson Center receivership, criminal defense counsel to an indicted celebrity and several private equity funds as general counsel with investment strategies focused on distressed asset acquisition.
Bill is a 1998 graduate of the College of Business Administration, where he majored in Finance and was introduced into the Golden Key Society. After earning his degree from Pitt Business, Bill earned his Juris Doctor from Pitt's Law School. In each year since 2010, Bill has been selected for inclusion in the Pennsylvania Super Lawyers’ Rising Stars Edition—an honor bestowed upon less than 5% of Pennsylvania lawyers. In addition, Martindale-Hubbell has issued Bill an “AV Preeminent” peer review, its highest rating for all attorneys. In 2012, Bill was recognized as the 2012 Pitt Business Outstanding Alumnus Honoree at our Business Alumni Association Awards program. The honor was well-deserved.
Bill works with various local non-profits as a trustee, director and volunteer for special projects. By appointment from Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald, Bill serves as a Commission on the Allegheny County Human Relations Commission.
Bill remains very active at the University of Pittsburgh. He has served as an adjunct professor at Pitt Law since 2012 for the three credit course “Secured Transactions”. Bill is also a frequent guest lecturer at Pitt Business for both the graduate and undergraduate programs. He has also served on the Pitt Business Alumni Board for several years and recently participated in the formation of the CBA Advisory Board to the Pitt Business Alumni Board.
Bill lives in South Fayette with his wife, Amy, and their pride and joy—sons Liam (4) and Evan (3). You’ll often see Bill at Pitt football and basketball games with one of his boys. We are grateful to have Bill with us today. I ask, Bill Price, to please come forward at this time.
- Aaron Risden, CPA, BSBA '03; MS '11
Aaron Risden, CPA, BSBA '03; MS '11
Chief Administrative Officer and Treasurer, Vision Benefits of America, Inc.
Aaron Risden is Chief Administrative Officer at the second largest vision insurance provider in Pennsylvania. Aaron is responsible for accounting & finance, information technology, and data processing in his present role. Aaron previously was a controller for a privately held company and a senior manager at a U.S. top 25 accounting and consulting firm in Pittsburgh. Aaron specialized in providing audit, accounting and consulting services to private businesses in a variety of industries, as well as to employee benefit plans. Aaron was the 2012-2013 President of the Pittsburgh Chapter of the Pennsylvania Institute of Certified Public Accountants (PICPA) and has previously served the Pittsburgh Chapter of the PICPA as Co-Chair of the Community Involvement & Social Responsibility Committee and Chair of the Member Services Committee. Aaron was recognized as one of the PICPA’s 40 Under 40 Members to Watch in 2008. Aaron is also a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants. Aaron received his undergraduate and graduate degrees in accounting from the University of Pittsburgh.
- Erik Rodenberg, MBA '08
Erik Rodenberg, MBA '08
Partner, Columbus Consulting
Erik has over 20 years of combined corporate, store and consulting experience including 15 years of leadership in the US Army Reserves. Erik's executive experiences include Victoria's Secret, Burdines and Joseph Horne's Department Stores (both currently Macy's), Montgomery Ward, Home Shopping Network (HSN), General Nutrition Center (GNC) and Giant Eagle.
Erik has a comprehensive knowledge of the retail business including merchandising, replenishment, allocation, assortment and retail space planning and has recent consulting experience focusing on marketing strategy and implementation. Erik is a veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom where he served as a commanding officer with the US Army from 2004 through 2005 and was awarded a Bronze Star for his efforts in providing superior operational, administrative and logistical support.
Erik is a graduate of Indiana University of Pennsylvania with a BS in Management, Minor in Economics and received his MBA from University of Pittsburgh Katz Graduate School with a concentration in International Business. Erik is also a graduate of the Duquesne University Non-Profit Leadership Academy, received certification for the Business Executive Education winter series at Carnegie Mellon University Tepper School of Business and has been certified in the Principles of the Toyota Production Concepts.
- Roy Sembel, PhD '96
Roy Sembel, PhD '96
Dean and Professor IPMI IBS, Professional, Consultant, Trainer, Entrepreneur, Investor
Roy Sembel serves as Dean and Professor at IPMI International Business School in Indonesia, and serves as President Commissioner at PT MCS International, Independent Commissioner at PT HITS, Tbk, Senior Counsellor for Vreins & Partner, Chairman of the Supervisory Committee for the Asian Bond Fund/Indonesia Bond Index Fund, and Chairman of the Index Committee for Indeks Investor 33.
Roy is the owner of PT MARS Indonesia and PT Capital Price Indonesia, with many past experiences working at multinational companies and local companies and universities.
Roy holds a PhD in Business from the University of Pittsburgh, an MBA in Finance/Banking from the Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University and The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania.
- Matthew Stahl
Vice President, Retail and Consumer Lending Operational Risk
LOB Risk Lead
Matthew Stahl is a Line of Business Risk Lead at PNC Bank in Pittsburgh. He enables his business partners to successfully execute on PNC’s operational risk management programs and broader operational risk management framework. He also advises business partners on operational risk matters in a manner that will advance Line of Business Strategic Priorities while also maintaining a risk profile that is within PNC’s risk appetite. In his five years at PNC, Matthew has taken on many different roles and has helped the company make significant progress toward improving the quality of risk management.
Prior to joining PNC, Matthew managed a group of information technology professionals that helped develop and support BNY Mellon’s risk management applications. During that time he also conducted yearly financial planning and budgeting for BNY Mellon’s Corporate Shared Services Technology Division.
He began his career and spent two years at The Vanguard Group located in the greater Philadelphia region. There he established himself as a lead project manager and a highly sought after resource.
Matthew holds a Master of Business Administration from the Joseph M. Katz Graduate School of Business and a Bachelor of Science in Information Technology from Slippery Rock University. Matt is a native of Pittsburgh and resides in Peters Township with his wife and two children.
- Kim Taylor (MBA '96)
The Taylored Approach, Inc.
Chicago area entrepreneur, Kim Taylor, launched her executive advisory services firm, The Taylored Approach, Inc. in 2005. For the past decade, she has worked with clients to provide both strategic and tactical assistance to business owners and executives in the areas of leadership development, communication, and small business operations. She is also an Adjunct Professor at Elgin Community College where she teaches courses in entrepreneurship, business, and sales.
Prior to starting The Taylored Approach, Kim spent nearly a decade with IBM as a certified business consultant, project manager, and sales executive. While with IBM, she worked with Fortune 500 clients on a variety of business and e-commerce projects. From there, she became Vice President of Sales & Marketing for a medical manufacturing firm with responsibility for both domestic and international sales efforts. In 2008, she started her second company, Healthcare Language Services, to provide foreign language access services to hospitals in the Chicago area. Four years later she merged the company with another language services firm, InDemand Interpreting. The combined company now offers onsite, telephonic and video interpreting services to hundreds of hospitals across the country.
Kim earned an MBA at the Katz Graduate School of Business and a Master of Economic and Social Development degree at the Graduate School of Public and International Affairs, both at the University of Pittsburgh, and a Bachelor's degree in International Relations at the University of California at Davis. Kim is a Returned Peace Corps Volunteer, having served in Honduras from 1992 – 1994. She has lived, worked, and traveled extensively throughout Latin America, Europe, the Middle East, and Asia Pacific and she speaks fluent Spanish.
- Kathleen Valentine
Chief of Staff
Mobility Solutions Services
Kathleen (Kathy) Valentine has over 20 years of cross functional experience in the international business, telecommunications and wireless industries. She continues to have a pivotal leadership role in the wireless solutioning division serving large multinational businesses, with emphasis on high-end mobile products and services. She is located in NJ.
Kathy earned her MBA from the University of Pittsburgh Joseph M. Katz Graduate School in 1 990 and joined AT&T as a manager in their rotational Finance Professional Devel opment Program in New Jersey. While working full-time for this Fortune 50 company, she attended New York University Stern’s School of Business at night and earned an additional graduate certificate in Accounting. Her experience in the rotational program, and her academic performance at NYU earned her a 3-year international assignment in the Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) region in Brussels Belgium. Her work in EMEA included extensive new business development and venture analysis of potential mergers and acquisitions.
Upon returning to the U.S., Kathy joined SBC Communications in the Pacific Region in California. During the next few years, she gained invaluable skills in positions across functions and locations within AT&T. Her financial skills include plann in g, budgeting, consolidated reproting, financial architectiture planning, senior financial analysis, long-term forecasting and business unit executive support. She has lived and worked in Basking Ridge NJ, San Francisco CA, San Antonio TX, Dallas TX, Brussels Belgium and London UK.
In her current position Kathy manages a team th at provides support to the Mobile Solutioning business in multiple key areas, including developing and tracking business plans, staffing, performance management and monitoring product level profitability. This position direct reports to a Vice President and has overall management and oversight of the entire business unit.
While working full time, she has also attained success within the community service arena by volunteering with the National Black MBA Association. In 2008, she was elected as the Dallas Chapter President and her lead ership earned them the 2009 Chapter of the Year award.
Kathy holds an MBA in Finance and International Business from the Joseph M. Katz Graduate School of Business. She has an additional accounting certificate from New York University’s Stern School of Business.