Consulting, Research and Business Services

Mike Ruffing

Mike Ruffing

Current City: Buckhannon, WV

Assistant Manager- Circuit City 2001-2004

Assistant Manager- Midas Intl 2005-2006

Manager- Advance Auto Parts 2006-2011

District Leader- Advance Auto Parts 2011- Present

Owner- Problem Solver's Consultants 2014- Present



Penn State University- Business Administration

Michael Theisen

Michael Theisen

Current City: Waukesha, WI

Current Position:

Owner- Sales Marketing & Marketing Solutions, LLC   Waukesha WI

Consulting firm dedicated to helping small business owners improve sales and marketing operations within their companies to improve revenue and profitability.

Director of Marketing- Liberty Dance Center, LLC

Direct marketing efforts of my daughter's business established in 2008. Responsible for all marketing and growth initiatives along with directing community outreach program.

Past Work Experiences:

Wisconsin Independent Businesses (WIB)                   Madison, WI

Director of Member Services for small business lobbyist organization with over 4,000 members in WI.

ADVO (Valasis)                                                                  Milwaukee, WI

Director of Sales for Wisconsin and W. Michigan markets, managing 6-10 sales people.  ADVO is a provider of Direct Mail marketing services.

Norstan Commications-                                                   Minneapolis, MN

Held a variety of sales and marketing positions in my 21 year career with this telecommunicatiions and call center technology company, selling to medium to large commercial businesses.  Held positions in sales, sales management, general management, VP and EVP of Sales, VP of Consulting Services managing upwards of 500 people and $ 50 million of annual revenue.  Managed both revenue and profit/loss responsiblities.

Texas Instruments-                                                            Houston, TX

Sold data communications products to large commercial businesses in the Wisconsin marketplace.

Wisconsin Telephone-

Represented and sold AT&T telecommunications products as part of this Bell operating company to Wisconsin based business customers.

Lever Brothers-                                                                      Chicago, IL

Worked as sales representative and District Sales Manager in Chicago IL marketplace representing Lever Brothers consumer product distribution in grocery stores and general merchandise stores.



BBA- Marketing&nbsp; University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee</p>

Cash Flow Template in Excel 

Short Business Plan Template in Word

Dr. Sumita B. Mitra

Dr. Sumita B. Mitra

Current City: St. Pete Beach, FL

I was trained in Chemistry and received my Ph.D. from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI and post-doctoral training at Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, OH. I have spent my entire professional career of nearly 32 years (1978-2010) at the 3M Company in St. Paul, MN. For 10 years (2000-2010) I was also Industrial Director of Minnesota Dental Research Center of Biomaterials and Biomechanics at the University of Minnesota. I retired from 3M in 2010. Since then I have set up a consulting company, Mitra Chemical Consulting, of which I am co-owner and partner along with my husband.

During my 32 years tenure at 3M Company I was primary engaged in Research and Development. My expertise has been in identifying market needs and inventing new or identifying existing technologies to design and deliver new products to fulfill those needs. 3M is a diversified manufacturing company and major player in many industries and I have had the benefit of experience in several industries including adhesives, traffic safety products and healthcare. Much of my experience has been in the Health Care businesses of 3M, including medical devices and in the dental and orthodontic arena. I have had extensive expertise in strategic planning for these businesses and in starting new categories of products. I have extensive experience in leading multifunctional teams including laboratory, manufacturing, marketing and regulatory/ toxicological services. I am the sole or co-inventor of 79 patents and am intimately familiar with the intellectual property process. As one of the top scientists of 3M I have visited and worked with laboratories and customers in 45 countries. I have also led an integration team to complete a major international acquisition.

Our present consulting company, Mitra Chemical Consulting LLC, has a goal of collaborative relationship with client companies to meet every aspect of our clients’ technological needs in a range of diverse industries including health-care, industrial and consumer products that require chemical/polymer expertise. We have helped many start-up businesses scope out technological feasibility and scope out inventions. I have also given courses on the innovation process at several prestigious universities and large corporations.



B.Sc. &amp; M.Sc. Chemistry, University of Calcutta India</p>

Ph.D. Organic/Polymer Chemistry, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan</p>

Post Doctoral Training, Macromolecular Science, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio.</p>

Jeremiah Holt Jr.

Jeremiah Holt Jr.

Current City: Vancouver, WA

.  I am a fifteen-year Veteran of the Bartending Industry and I have for the past three years built my current company, Just Right Cocktails NW from being an “under the table” sole proprietorship into a WA State Licensed LLC.  The business I own is a Special Events Bartending Service.  This means I help bring the bar service to your desired location at the right price.  Prior to this I was an Intern with the Washington State Business Assistance Center helping aspiring and current entrepreneurs find the right resources they need to succeed.
In addition to this, I am also a member of Gamma Psi Beta Fraternity Incorporated, which is a service fraternity that strives to make a positive impact on our respective communities by taking the time to volunteer in various projects ranging from mentorship to other community activities.



B.S. in Business Administration (Service and Hospitality Focus) in Winter 2015</p>

Dr. Max Goelling

Dr. Max Goelling

Current City: Winston Salem, NC



Doctor of Philosophy - Religion (current)&amp;lt;/p&amp;gt;

Doctor of Christian Studies, ULC Seminary&amp;lt;/p&amp;gt;

Master of Healthcare Administration&amp;lt;/p&amp;gt;

Master of Business Administration&amp;lt;/p&amp;gt;

Master of Education (C)&amp;lt;/p&amp;gt;

Bachelor of Science - Human Services Psychology/Sociology)&amp;lt;/p&amp;gt;

Warren J Cook

Warren J Cook

Current City: Kalamazoo, MI



Cook & Associates Consulting,                                                                           1995 to present:

  • Secure financing components for industrial investments and commercial start-ups.
  • Guide and coach firms through industrial tax abatement application processes.
  • Certify industrial parks within communities throughout Michigan for MEDA.
  • Site consultant sub-contractor for international horticultural consultant.
  • Tri-annual golf outings with extremely well seasoned Michigan E.D. practitioners.


Business Growth Specialist                                                                             2005 to 2012:

  • Conducted industrial retention visits and managed follow-up actions,
  • Managed two business Revolving Loan Funds - 15 loans totaling

     $2.8mm, leveraging $27mm with 135 jobs,

  • Provided admin support for Industrial Tax Increment Financing Authority,
  • Provided EDC project management for special projects,
  • Chair Statewide Certified Business Park Program within Michigan Economic

            Development Association (MEDA).


Vice President for Resource Development

The Enterprise Group of Jackson, Inc., Jackson, MI                                              1996 to 2004:

  • Exec. Dir. of the County Econ. Dev. Corp. (EDC) – managed Industrial Revenue Bond

     and $1.5 million Revolving Loan Fund Programs,

  • Established and Exec. Dir. of the County-wide Brownfield Redevelopment Authority,
  • Maintained industrial site and building location inventories,
  • Provided industrial facilities tax abatement guidance,
  • Conducted industrial retention visits and managed follow-up actions,
  • Provided relocation assistance to industrial and commercial inquiries,
  • Successfully secured $1.35 million EPA brownfield clean-up and site assessment grants

     & $450,000 in HUD grants for industrial infrastructure.


Executive Director

Branch County Economic Growth Alliance, Inc., Coldwater, MI                              1990 to 1995:

  • Created and presented incentives packages to firms resulting in 17 new firms and

                 $5,000,000 new investment,

  • Conducted retention visits with local industries; results included: $85+ million new

                 investment and 2,000 new jobs,

  • Guided development of three industrial parks in separate communities;
  • Prepared over $2.8 million in a variety of grant applications,
  • Guided Kellogg Community College development of new academic center in Coldwater.


Economic Development Coordinator

Southcentral Michigan Planning Council, Portage, MI                                            1987 to 1990:

            Responsible for industrial assistance throughout two rural counties resulting in over 2700 jobs and $56 million in investment.

            Responsible for annual development of community created local improvement project inventory in 3 rural and 2 urban counties.


Program Manager - Economic Development

West Michigan Shoreline Regional Development Commission, Muskegon, MI         1986 to 1987:

            *           Assisted communities in one rural and two urban counties to  develop physical and human resource infrastructure needed to meet local objectives.




Assoc. Dean of Instruction - Business and Technical Studies

Kalamazoo Valley Community College, Kalamazoo, MI                                         1983 to 1985:

            *           Responsible for 58 FTE faculty and staff; 34 Associate Degree and Certificate Programs; developing and managing a $1.8 million budget; evaluating faculty and staff; establishing articulation agreements with area high schools and colleges; and re-activating academic program advisory committees.


Regional Community Development Agent

Cooperative Extension Service

Pennsylvania State University, Reading, PA                                                         1980 to 1983:

            *           Worked with local government officials and groups to determine needs; provided legislative process information for citizen use; created, packaged and delivered community education programs including:

                                    - legislation impact on local government

                                    - land development ordinances (subdivisions)

                                    - land use planning and zoning


Research Assistant

Illinois State Geological Survey

University of Illinois

Urbana-Champaign, IL                                                                                        1978 to 1980:

            *           Conceived, developed and co-authored "Land Use Impacts of Subsidence Over Illinois Coal Mines".


Assistant Planning Director

Kankakee County Planning Commission

Kankakee, IL                                                                                                     1974 to 1978:

            *           Supervised staff and technicians; directed community needs assessments; created community development plans with local officials and citizens; directed and completed successful Community Development Block Grant applications; and successfully re-initiated federal HUD contract activities.


Staff Writer

Governor's Office of Management and Budget

State of Michigan, Lansing, MI                                                                            1973 to 1974:

            *           Co-authored report on staffing Michigan's multi-county planning districts.


Management Analyst

United States Air Force

L. G. Hanscom Field

Bedford, MA                                                                                                      1969 to 1974:

            *           Co-developed computerized management program to monitor Department of Defense research and development contracts.



Graduate: Economic Development Institute (EDI), University of Oklahoma, 1996</p>

M.U.P., Urban &amp; Regional Planning, University of Illinois, 1980</p>

B.S., Urban Studies, Michigan State University, 1969</p>

Ron Elliard

Ron Elliard

Current City: Meredith, NH

Ron Elliard is driven by a passion for people--motivating them to reach for the highest standards of success. As the founder and CEO of Evermore Consulting Services, Ron trains business executives and management professionals to be the best they can be, inspiring them to strive to get to the top...and stay there. His innovative, no-nonsense approach is based on applying what he has observed in his seventeen-plus years as a business leader, motivational speaker and trainer. Ron reveals the common business habits of the top 20% of performers in upper quartile organizations, and insures his clients stay committed to their goals.

Ron Elliard has worked extensively with business and healthcare facilities throughout the Northeast and Mid-Atlantics states, and has a rich mix of business development, operations and strategic planning for 1 million to 50 million-dollar organizations. Ron's diversity of experienced from start-up to work out, turnaround and rapid growth, has helped him in resolving long-standing problems and creating solutions that improve operational efficiency and profitability. By utilizing expert analysis and insights to promulgate lean approaches and team empowerment Ron has helped help 100's of companies to drive organizational improvements and instills best practices. With dynamic leadership and business acumen Ron brings about dramatic change to organizations which produce extraordinary results. Ron worked for companies like American Management Services and Arthur Andersen before starting ECS in 2000. Ron currently consults, holds webinars, coaches, writes, and does speaking engagements. Ron also Chairs the (BLR) Business Leaders Roundtable which is a peer advisory group that helps end the isolation of being the top executive, allows for peer-to-peer feedback when tackling common business issues and helps top executives hold themselves and each other accountable.


  • Practice Management & Development

  • Process Improvement

  • Turnaround or Rapid Growth

  • Strategic Planning

  • Family Business

  • Succession Planning







Ron attended the University of San Francisco in California, for his undergrad in business administration while in the military (USMC). Ron has always been entrepreneurial by nature and had several business of his own before starting his consulting career. While running his own security company with 60 plus employees Ron went to school at night at New Hampshire College to attain his MBA. In 1992 he sold the Security Company and went full time into consulting, first with Authur Andersen, then American Management Services.  In 1995 Ron opened a 10 man consulting firm, North Star Small Business Strategies Inc. which grew rapidly and specialized in all types of industries from start up to 50 Million in revenue. After Five years it was time to slim down and concentrate the practice to a more specialized and hands on service for his clientele. In 2000 Ron revamped his practice to more align with his passion thus ECS was born.

Ron and his wife of 25 years Mary collaborate often in support of those who cannot help themselves and spend a fair amount of time traveling in that pursuit. A recent trip took them to Peru where they hiked Machu Picchu and then spent time at the local orphanage where they still send support to children today.  Ron has two adult children, recent college grads and two dogs…Skye and Koda.


George Christopher Dickson

George Christopher Dickson

Current City: Aiken, SC
Chapter: Charlotte SCORE

Senior executive with 20+ years' experience leading businesses that manufacture and/or source goods or services using industry leading practices. Broad, cross functional background in numerous industries: consumer durable, diversified industrial, automotive, aerospace, electrical power, and medical devices. Global breadth of experience includes North and South America, Europe, and Asia. Functional experience includes manufacturing, engineering, accounting, IT, HR, sales management, marketing, materials management, customer service, strategy deployment, and plant operations. Manufacturing process knowledge includes metalworking, metal removal, drawing, molding, heat treating, forging, casting, welding, coating, finishing, plating, assembly, inspection, pack, and ship. Operations Consulting: grow sales by developing strong customer relationships,delivering exceptional customer service, and selling value added. Drive operational excellence via LEAN and Theory of Constraints. Develop people through education, mentoring, and encouraging character. Fix under-performing businesses by identifying and eliminating the root cause/s of waste. Project and Portfolio Consulting Professional: excellent big picture focus, strategy alignment and deployment skills. Skilled negotiator with proven ability to manage project constraints so that objectives are met. Organizational Development Coach: provide personalized career coaching/mentoring to executives and technical professionals. Assist organizations who want to improve their bench strength via training and mentoring. Specialize in encore career and career start coaching. Member of the Project Management Institute - Piedmont Triad Chapter and Society for Human Resource Management - Charlotte Chapter. Past Member of APICS, ASM, and IEEE.



BSEET - Clemson University

MBA - Clemson University


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