by Jennifer Martins | Apr 6, 2020 | Growth, Innovation, Members, News
We are facing a once in a generation event that impacts everyone. This is the time for people, companies, and organizations to come together for the greater good. Here is an update on what CEO Connection and one of our members, AES Controls based out of Cincinnati, have been doing over the past few days:
AES Control is providing a unique solution to help during this pandemic that will help save lives. The talented engineers at AES have designed, developed, and are now building invasive or non-invasive Stage 1 ventilators for immediate hospital use. AES has done this by a creating a controller to adapt readily available CPAP machines that can be:
- Attached to either a non-invasive ventilation mask or an endotracheal tube;
- Will regulate breathing modulation and;
- Has an anti-aerosolization containment / filtration measures for expired breath;
- Can convert used or new units.
While AES is creating, CEO Connection is connecting. Our strategic partner, Ballard Spahr, filed a patent for AES. Through our community we are in touch with the White House, the National Governors Association, Johnson and Johnson, Dr Oz, numerous hospitals, and we have members who want to provide materials, labor, expertise, and logistical support.
As a result, the first manufactured conversions will be shipped to the current epicenter of the pandemic, New York City next week. Then AES will start partnering with idle CEO Connection member manufacturers to scale up production to 10,000 a week, depending on parts availability. This is the power of partnership, relationships, and connections through CEO Connection.
As CEO of CEO Connection, we are so proud to be working alongside our members to provide extraordinary solutions for these extraordinary times. You do great things on your own…we can do greater things together! And together, we can save lives!
Please share this information with hospitals, medical centers and anyone on the front lines who might need ventilators. They can contact AES@ceoconnection.com.
by Jennifer Martins | Feb 7, 2020 | Members
Ollen Douglass, Managing Director, Motley Fool Ventures
Motley Fool Ventures is an early stage, technology-focused venture fund focused on Series A companies.
Prior to joining the Fund, Ollen was CFO of The Motley Fool Holdings, Inc. for 14 years. During that time, he was responsible for the overall financial health of The Fool and helped guide the company through periods of major growth, contraction, and market volatility. Ollen’s oversight duties included The Fool’s finance and accounting groups as well as legal, benefits, sales, business development, real estate, business intelligence, international and asset management. His financing experience spans the full spectrum from bank financing to venture financing. During Ollen’s management of the pilot program, Motley Venture Partners, he and the team compiled a portfolio of private companies that will be contributed to the Fund. Today, Ollen serves on the board of Eyrus, InHerSight, and Young Artists of America. He has been a recipient of the Motley Fool Founders’ award and Favorite Fool award. He was twice nominated for Greater Washington CFO of the Year and is a member of the 2019 class of Greater Washington Minority Business Leaders. Prior to joining The Fool, Ollen worked in mortgage banking, focusing on mortgage servicing, fair lending and risk management. He was also an auditor for KPMG and is a CPA (inactive). Ollen graduated from the University of Baltimore with a bachelor’s degree in accounting and lives in the Washington area with his wife and three sons.
CEOC: What recent success are you most proud of?
OD: I’m most proud of the launch of The Motley Fool’s inaugural venture fund. We made a conscious decision to turn the typical venture capital playbook upside down, and instead of courting large investments from a few institutions, we leveraged The Motley Fool community to raise relatively smaller amounts from a large number of retail investors. Launched in 2018, Motley Fool Ventures went on to raise $150 million from over 800 investors (or “Limited Partners”/”LPs”) in approximately eight months. The fund exceeded its $100M target by 50%, was over 80% larger than the median new fund in 2018, and was raised 40% faster than the average fund. We have LPs in 45 of 50 states and have close to 200 women LPs. Motley Fool Ventures is believed to be the largest debut fund ever that was led by an African American.
CEOC: What’s your motto?
OD: At The Motley Fool, we have six core values. The first five are the same for everyone: collaborative, innovative, fun, honest, and competitive. The last is “Motley,” and each employee is encouraged to choose their own as a way to personalize the core values. Mine is “purpose and profit.” I am energized by seeking to do good and do well, without compromising either.
CEOC: How do you keep your company in front of trends, customer needs, and your competitors?
OD: Motley Fool Ventures is a strong believer in community and interacts with our customers through regular digital communications, surveys, and live events. With a stakeholder approach, we focus on collaboration and building win-win relationships with our customers, employees, business partners, and shareholders. That approach exposes us to a wide spectrum of priorities and perspectives. We believe there is room for many in our space, which diffuses the need to focus on companies as competitors—there can be many winners.
CEOC: Is M&A part of your innovation plan?
OD: As a new and lean organization, Motley Fool Ventures is very open to an objective view on build versus buy decisions. We are more likely to acquire technologies to accelerate growth than to acquire fund assets. One of the many benefits of operating in the startup world is being surrounded by innovation, which makes the difficult seem doable and the “never been done” feel like the next logical step.
Join CEOs like Ollen at the 2020 Convention to discuss this and other pressing topics.
by Jennifer Martins | Jan 16, 2020 | Members
Excerpt from Take Me with You, a book written by Scott Jackson
“Every child—whether in the United States or in less developed countries—deserves to have a fighting chance in life. You have the choice to live your life in a way that will change another person’s life for the better … and maybe transform yours own along the way.”
In 2017, Scott Jackson, President and Chief Executive Officer of Global Impact, wrote Take Me with You as a call to action to help those in need, especially children. And nobody knows more about helping others than Jackson, whose personal philosophy involves living life in a way that improves the lives of others.
“My purpose in writing the book and sharing my story was to hopefully inspire people to find the charity within, and to recognize the difference they can make in other people’s lives,” explains Jackson. “There are so many people in need around the world and so many wonderful organizations working tirelessly to improve conditions and contribute toward achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. I hope this book brings additional visibility to some of those organizations and is a call to action to everyone who reads it.”
And developing calls to action are what Jackson does best.
A leader in global philanthropy, he is well known for his vision, leadership and compassion for others. At Global Impact, Jackson oversees all facets of the organization, which has raised more than $2 billion since inception to help the world’s most vulnerable and needy.
A global development, fundraising and marketing veteran, Jackson has held leadership positions in the public, private and nonprofit sectors, including the global health and development nonprofits PATH and World Vision.
With Jackson’s personal background and professional expertise, it was no surprise that he delivered the 2019 Mid-Market Convention session Social Impact.
In this session, he discussed the CEOC Wharton Social Impact (CSI) student-consulting program, which helps mid-market companies incorporate social impact programs into their corporate strategy. In addition, he shared valuable information on the best ways to combine innovation and scale in your CSI program, as well as how to successfully integrate social impact into your business strategy and measure the power of CSI activities.
For Jackson, helping others realize their full potential and contributing to a better, safer world is crucial:
“My goal is to offer a message of hope and encourage others to embark on their own journey to serve others and spark positive change – in whatever way they can – because every life matters and there are so many in need around the globe.”
Join CEOs like Scott at the 2020 Convention to discuss this and other pressing topics.
by Jennifer Martins | Dec 14, 2019 | Members
Sharon Watkins, CEO, RadiusPoint
Sharon Watkins is the CEO of RadiusPoint a 27- year-old telecom and utility expense management firm. Sharon founded the company in 1992 and manages the sales and marketing aspects of the company. She has been instrumental in working with the software development team to create ExpenseLogic, the telecom and utility expense management software that has less than ten competitors worldwide.
From Sharon’s experience with clients, the software developed into the tool that can satisfy the needs of any organization that has multiple sites and numerous employees to manage. Sharon has successfully signed and retained Clients ranging from Fortune 50 to small local County governments.
RadiusPoint and the employees stand apart from competitors by achieving ISO 9001 standards in September of 2002. RadiusPoint is SSAE 18 (formerly SAS 70) certified and continues this certification with an annual audit. RadiusPoint also was awarded a GSA contract vehicle in 2018 for Schedule 70 IT services.
RadiusPoint, formerly TSG Enterprises, LLC, won the prestigious Top 50 Minority/Women Owned Businesses in Tennessee and was named a Top 100 Fastest Growing Companies by Fast Company Magazine. Sharon received the 2006 Enterprising Women of the Year award, and RadiusPoint was named one of Inc 5000 fastest-growing companies in 2015. The Orlando Business Journal named Sharon Business Owner of the Year in 2015 and CEO of the Year in 2019. Sharon has been a Premium Member of CEO Connection since September 2018.
CEOC: What recent success are you most proud of?
SW: There are a
few recent successful milestones that I have accomplished at RadiusPoint.
First, we celebrated 27 years in business in January of this year. That’s
phenomenal for our industry. Second, we were awarded the GSA Schedule 70 IT
Contract vehicle which is a government contract award that is very hard to
achieve. We actually achieved this in record time—5 months. The GSA told
us that it would take over a year to get this award if we were awarded. Third,
we just rolled out our eighth generation of ExpenseLogic, our proprietary
software which continues to aid in client retention.
CEOC: What action did you take early in your career that you
feel most helped you obtain your CEO position you hold today?
SW: Vision in
1996 to create a software that did not exist for an industry that was just
starting to emerge, Telecom and Utility Expense Management.
COEC: How do you start each day?
SW: Exercise, I
like to go to the gym for a few minutes of peace and quiet on the elliptical
machine. I love to clear my mind so that I can better focus on any tasks
that emerge throughout the day.
CEOC: What do you foresee will be the biggest
challenge to CEOs of mid-market companies in the next five years?
up with the constant changes in technology and retaining exceptional talent.
CEOC: How do you keep your company in front of trends, customer needs, and your competitors? SW: Research, research, research. You have to be able to cut through the mountains of information to identify what is truly going to retain your clients and keep them satisfied.
This article was previously published in the CEOC Magazine. You can read the magazine here.
RadiusPoint is part of our Member-to-Member Discount Program.
by Jennifer Martins | Jan 16, 2018 | Members
Olu is the CEO of Wholesome Sweeteners Inc., the #1 Natural & Organic, Fair Trade sweetener brand in North America. Olu is a Board Member of Big Brothers, Big Sisters Northern New Jersey and on the Advisory Board of Morristown Medical Center.
by Gabriela Sanchez | Nov 5, 2017 | Members
Adam Warby joined Avanade at its inception in 2000, and currently serves as their Chief Executive Officer. Adam led Avanade’s worldwide sales and marketing teams, and set the vision and direction for Avanade solutions. Adam is currently chairperson of CEO Connection’s European Expansion Committee.
As one of the founding members of Avanade, Adam was instrumental in building the company and shaping its culture. A senior leader, Adam has significant experience managing and growing Avanade’s business operations, having served as General Manager and Senior Vice President for the company’s North American and European operations during his tenure.
Adam on LinkedIn