Forty Under 40: Utah’s Rising Stars
The careers of our Forty Under 40 honorees have been roller coasters—spanning the sharp drop of the Great Recession, the painfully slow recovery and the quick economic acceleration of the past two years. These resilient leaders took the hard lessons learned from the downturn and used them to build stronger, more efficient businesses. They kept their sights set on ambitious goals—and reached them. Please join us in a round of applause for this year’s admirable Forty Under 40 honorees.
Cori Swisher Anderson – 32
Marketing Manager, R&O Construction
Current Role: Cori Anderson has a background in nonprofit marketing and development. At R&O, Anderson lends her experience in writing proposals, managing marketing campaigns, design and layout, and social media marketing.
Market Evolution: Post-recession, Anderson says R&O has been able to focus on winning projects that aligns with its goals. “As a marketer, this shift has been really fun. It’s meant that we can embark on a re-branding campaign, cultivate client relationships that result in signature projects and focus on thriving in the areas where we really shine,” she says.
First Job: “My first real job after college was in non-profit fundraising. I think every young person should work for a non-profit. You learn to make miracles happen with zero resources. I’ve never quite gotten over the mentality that every dollar you spend on administrative expenses is a dollar that can’t be spent on an organization’s mission.”
“I love my work because it is constantly changing my perspective. Everyday I’m challenged to shift the way I look at the work my company does and figure out the best way to align it with our clients’ needs. It’s really fun for me to work out how those puzzle pieces go together and, ultimately, it is very fulfilling.”
Josh Baxter – 37
Executive Vice President, Global Services; LANDESK Software
Accomplishments: Josh Baxter has overseen LANDESK’s expansion into Australia, China, France and Southern Europe, along with building operations in Poland and China. Every year since 2011, he has achieved over 100 percent of his $100 million annual sales target. In 2013 Baxter founded the Thoma Bravo Customer Success & Services Summit.
Overcoming Challenges: “As we entered our relationship with Thoma Bravo, I was given the opportunity to streamline and operationalize big portions of the LANDESK business. By helping my team understand the vision, how we would leverage those profits for future growth, and showing them a path to success, we have been able to become the ‘blueprint’ for Thoma Bravo Global Services organizations. Each of my staff has become the go-to person for sharing best practices throughout the Thoma Bravo portfolio in their respective areas of expertise.”
First Job: “I milked cows when I was 14-15 years old. Few things will encourage a young man to get an education like milking cows at 4 am in January.”
“Early in my career my thirst for achievement was fed by leaders and mentors who were always willing to offer me new challenges. Today, I’m blessed to be that leader who gets to mentor and develop others.”
Chad Bennett – 35
Current Role: Bennett is the founder and CEO of HEROIC, an enterprise-level cybersecurity provider offering a security portal for home users to protect their sensitive information on wireless devices. He is also chairman of Lancera, a cybersecurity company he founded in 2011.
Accomplishments: A self-taught coder who began writing software at the age of 14, Bennett has been the CEO of two Inc. 500 companies. His companies have garnered much interest and accolades, including UVEF’s Top 25 Under 5, Utah Valley Magazine’s 10 Startups to Watch 2015, and Utah Angel’s Tech X Top Ten. In his companies, Bennett is proud to have created employment opportunities for hundreds of people. He is also an Ironman Triathlon finisher.
Role Model: “Ross Perot is my business role model. … Ross Perot always stood up for what he felt was right, even with his reputation and money on the line. Although he had many devastating losses, he consistently picked himself up and continued to move forward. He believed in himself.”
“An ethical business values integrity more than anything else. It provides an honest service or product of real value to its employees, customers and the communities it serves in. It also recognizes that business is not a zero-sum game and acts accordingly.”
Scott Bird – 32
Scott Poelman – 38
Matt Krull – 38
Co-founders and Managing Partners, Olympus Wealth Management
Accomplishments: Scott Bird, Matt Krull and Scott Poelman all previously worked at J.P. Morgan’s Private Bank before realizing they possessed complementary skills and decided to form Olympus Wealth Management. Krull was the market director for Investment Services at J.P. Morgan, responsible for overseeing approximately 20 employees and $1 billion in assets under supervision. Bird worked at J.P. Morgan for seven years as an analyst, associate, and a vice president and private banker. Poelman worked at J.P. Morgan’s Private Bank for three years as a private banker, helping numerous clients manage liquidity events, including two of the largest in Utah’s history. At Olympus, the three work with high-net and ultra-high-net-worth clients.
Scott Poelman’s Hobby: A health and fitness enthusiast, Poelman has gone 17 years without eating a dessert. At his wedding, instead of partaking in his own wedding cake, Poelman refrained and instead ate a wedding banana.
Scott Bird’s First Job: “I was able to convince the Ogden Standard-Examiner and my parents to give me a paper route at the age of 11. I remember getting up early in the morning to fold papers, put them on my bike, deliver the paper, and then collect money every month. It was definitely not my favorite job, but I did begin to understand the importance of hard work from a young age.”
“If you are not absorbing and digesting information real time, then you are at a disadvantage. As a result of real time information, the markets became more efficient and therefore clients need more than a broker. Clients need a team of individuals who can not only manage investments and risk, but a team who can provide sophisticated planning and first-class service.” – Matt Krull
Tim Brown, Jr. – 38
President, Rain Gutter Specialties / RGS Construction and Exteriors
Accomplishments: Tim Brown, Jr. is the fourth generation in his industry; he became partners with his father in 2003 and helped increase revenue for the company by a factor of 10. He serves on the steering committee for the national Certified Contractors Network and on the boards of the Utah Home Builders Association and the Salt Lake Home Builders Association.
Industry Evolution: Brown says the industry has changed a lot in the years after the Great Recession. Work has picked up, but now qualified employees are difficult to find. “I think the way we adapt is constant learning and training. We spend a lot of time and money as a company in training,” he says.
First Job: “I have only had one job my entire life. Rain Gutter Specialties.
“In the Great Recession, we took a huge hit as construction was the hardest hit in Utah. We dug in, worked hard and have become a more profitable company. We implemented great systems to keep us efficient and have happy customers.”
Reed W. Chase – 39
Audit Partner, Tanner LLC
Current Role: Reed Chase currently serves as a president of the MountainWest Capital Network and is on the advisory board of the Weber State University School of Accountancy. He is a member of both the AICPA and the UACPA.
Rewards of the Job: “One of the most rewarding things I do is coaching and mentoring people I work with. I have been fortunate to have great coaches and mentors throughout my career so far and find great fulfillment working with other professionals to achieve their goals. In the end, it comes down to people. I thoroughly enjoy the professionals and the clients I have the opportunity to work with.”
Favorite Utah Diversion: “Canyoneering in Southern Utah. It is a rejuvenating combination of surreal beauty, physical and mental exertion and a little bit of adrenaline!”
“A good leader doesn’t focus on business, a good leader focuses on people. He or she understands that when you take care of people, people take care of business.”
Ryan Creamer – 39
Accomplishments: During Ryan Creamer’s tenure as CEO, sPower has accumulated 150+ renewable energy products in both the United States and United Kingdom. Creamer created a lightweight building material called Flexcrete during his senior year in the University of Utah’s engineering program. He patented the product, and went on to co-found ISG Resources. There, he oversaw the science, material design and manufacturing of Flexcrete. Creamer went on to co-found sPower with his father in 2012 and oversaw the company’s acquisition of more than a gigawatt of energy contracts. sPower designed, constructed, owns and operates over $1 billion in renewable energy products.
What He Enjoys: “The energy of the industry—literally and figuratively. Renewable energy and the possibility of energy independence make me feel good about going to work and working hard every day. And the industry itself is made up of young, passionate and talented professionals.”
Favorite Utah Diversion: “Outdoor recreation with my wife and three daughters—enjoying a powder day at Alta or boating on Lake Powell; both are at the top of my list. Utah is an amazing place to live!”
“I believe that each of us has something that can be shared, whether talents, wealth, knowledge or time.”
Eric Evans – 33
Director, Tax; PwC
Accomplishments: Eric Evans is part of PwC’s Rockies Market Advisory Council, which engages with PwC leaders to discuss staff concerns and facilitate staff-level focus groups—an effort that helps PwC priorities its people in the same way it prioritizes its clients. Evans also has taken an active role in recruiting the firm’s next generation of talent.
Challenges and Rewards: “Taking a company public surfaces many complex tax issues because of the financing model of the company, coupled with a very aggressive timeline to issue financial statements. It forces the team to work very long hours under extreme pressure to ensure the accuracy/integrity of [the financial statements] and creates a need for inspirational coaching to empower staff to solve problems and develop effective project/people management skills, client-relationship skills, and tax technical skills in a short period of time.”
Favorite Utah Diversion: “Anywhere above 5,000 feet.”
“Clients keep me on my toes and it makes work exhilarating when I am able to help them solve their tax issues.”
Neal Gatherum – 39
Vice President & General Manger, Lamar Advertising
Current Role: Neal Gatherum oversees the sales, operations and administrative departments of Lamar’s Mountain West transit division, including Utah, New Mexico, Arizona and Idaho.
Accomplishments: Over the eight years Gatherum has been with Lamar Advertising, he has expanded distribution into two new markets and increased regional revenues by 270 percent. Gatherum consistently exceeded sales quotas, and is proud to have done so for 17 months consecutively during the recession in 2008-09, when clients’ marketing budgets were being reduced or eliminated. Previously, Gatherum worked for Spring Wireless, where he grew a one-man department into a team of 30 and helped the organization grow from 13 to 76 retail stores.
Favorite Utah Diversion: “Like many Utahns, my family and I migrate to Lake Powell every summer to disconnect from our electronic devices and spend time together. I enjoy wading through the marshes of the Great Salt Lake and hiking the Uintah Mountains on various hunting expeditions.”
“Growth only occurs past the point of comfort. I have always tried to put myself in uncomfortable situations knowing that I will grow from the experience.”
David R. Gill – 39
Executive Vice President – Corporate Services, Zions Bank
Current Role: David Gill leads a non-interest banking division with P&L responsibility of more than $50 million annually.
Accomplishments: Gill has spent the bulk of his career in finance and banking, both on the personal and business sides of the industry, including roles in finance, operations, sales and administration. He led a Treasury Management Division at Zions Bank that was recognized regionally and nationally for its products, sales and service. When he was promoted to his current role in May 2015, he became one of the youngest members of the bank’s executive management committee.
Favorite Utah Diversion: “I love spending time in the mountains. I grew up fishing, camping, hiking, etc. and I think the mountains are one of the great beauties on this earth. It provides a sense of seclusion from the craziness of all that surrounds us.”
“Banking is not the same today as it was 10 years ago, and we have had to learn that the one constant right now is change. Being adaptive has helped me get through the last seven years and allowed me to help lead groups of individuals that may be fixed on the idea of consistency in a world of change.”
David Goar – 39
Wealth Advisor, Research Financial Strategies
Accomplishments: David Goar began his career working for UBS during the economic downturn of the early 2000s. During that time, he was part of a small handful of 50 students in his financial training class who were able to successfully grow their client base. Goar received UBS’ Rookie of the Year Award, and within four years earned the title of vice president. In eight years, he increased his asset base from $0 to $75 million. Goar decided he could better assist and serve his 300+ clients from his own firm, and in March 2015, he began operating independently as Research Financial Strategies.
Industry Evolution: “Our industry has moved in a more ‘client-centric’ approach. Gone are the days of stockbrokers pushing certain stocks that benefit the brokerage firm. Today the industry has shifted to a ‘fiduciary model’ where the clients’ interests are always first.”
Last Book Read: Alexander Hamilton, by Ron Chernow
“I am fascinated by people. Even the most ordinary person has a unique story to their life. I really like getting to know my clients on a personal level and hearing about what got them to the point they are at in their life and, more importantly, where they are headed.”
Clint Gordon-Carroll – 37
Vice President of Cloud Storage, Vivint
Current Role: At Vivint, Clint Gordon-Carroll is continuing the work he started at Space Monkey, trying to change the way the world stores data.
Accomplishments: Formerly, Gordon-Carroll was CEO of Space Monkey, which was recently acquired by Vivint. The company managed to build the largest distributed peer-to-peer data storage system in the world, boasting over 100 petabytes of storage on a peer-to-peer network on tens of thousands of servers across almost every continent in the world.
Rewards of the Job: The thing Gordon-Carroll says he enjoys most about his role is finding ways to “disrupt a market that has been kind of fortified by the top tech world—like Google, Amazon—how do we disrupt some of the biggest companies in the world?”
“In the early days of doing a startup, success is really being able to deliver on the promises you make. … As a startup, you make promises to investors, you make promises to your employees—they come on with great risk to join a startup.”
Jon Grover – 32
Vice President of Product Management, InMoment
Accomplishments: Jon Grover started working at InMoment in 2005 as the company’s tenth employee, and has worked his way up from there. He has co-authored two patents, both with InMoment. Grover has also worked with a non-profit organization that delivered school supplies to orphanages and traveled to central Mexico to build adobe brick homes for families.
Overcoming Challenges: “Acquiring a competitor was one of the most difficult things we as a company have done. This was also true for me personally as I had to learn to manage a team that did not initially respect me. I had to adjust my management style and learn a new way to motivate and lead a team.”
Favorite Social Media Platform: “I enjoy using Pinterest a lot, because I love doing DIY projects around my house. I’m currently building a barn door out of reclaimed wood and a lamp out of metal pipes.”
“The great leaders in my life have a few qualities that I have tried to emulate. They listen twice as much as they talk, they have an insatiable hunger to learn, and they are humble to admit that they don’t have all the answers, make mistakes, and own them.”
Adam J. Grow – 37
SVP, General Manager; Rakuten Marketing
Current Role: At Rakuten Marketing, Adam Grow has been assisting with the company’s global expansion to London, Sydney, Sao Paolo, Tokyo and Singapore.
Accomplishments: Prior to Rakuten’s acquisition of MediaFORGE, Grow helped the company expand from 10 employees to 250. During the acquisition by Rakuten, Grow assisted in smoothing the transition of assets and employees. Post-acquisition, Grow has aided in the company’s recent global expansion and helped revenue grow by nearly eight times its pre-acquisition levels.
First Job: “From 16-18, I worked as a counselor at the Bennion Teton Boys Ranch, started by Utah philanthropist and professor Lowell Bennion as a place to teach young men the value of hard work. The ranch allowed boys from the ages of 12-15 to work on an active ranch for a month during the summer and also enjoy the Teton Mountains on the weekends.”
“An ethical business is one that can meet its vision while ensuring all stakeholders are treated fairly, whether it is customers, employees or other stakeholders. Transparency is key to achieving this, both internally and externally.”
Dave Grow – 31
Chief Revenue Officer, Lucid Software
Accomplishments: Dave Grow was the first business hire for Lucid Software, and he charge was simply to “grow the business.” Since that time five years ago, Grow has worn every hat in the company, which has more than doubled in revenue every year and grown from four to over 100 employees. Lucid now has two products, over 15 million users and over $10 million in annual product sales.
Culture Matters: “At Lucid, we have almost a fanatical focus on finding the right people and never settling. That focus has created an amazing atmosphere where we push each other to ask better questions, develop better ideas, and pursue better solutions. Building a company is truly a rollercoaster experience—being on that ride with the right people makes all the difference.”
Last Book Read: The Hard Thing about Hard Things, by Ben Horowitz
“The opportunity to really build something is what motivates me. I don’t take for granted that I was in the right place at the right time to join Lucid, and as a result, I have a real opportunity to be a part of building something meaningful and lasting. These kinds of opportunities don’t come around every day and so I want to take full advantage of it.”
Ibi Guevara – 39
Vice President, Business Development and Marketing; Hunt Electric
Current Role: Ibi Guevara is the vice president of business development and marketing at Hunt Electric, where she is responsible for revenue generation efforts. Guevara also oversees sales, marketing, media relations and public affairs.
Accomplishments: Guevara has both an MBA and a law degree, and is also proficient in three languages. She represents Hunt Electric on professional and non-profit boards for the Urban Land Institute – Utah Chapter, the International Facility Management Association and the Lupus Foundation. Hunt Electric’s revenue has increased for 10 years in a row under her leadership.
First Job: “I was the executive assistant to the founder and CEO of Irene Plus, a company that represented two large German beauty manufacturers in the Romanian market. We used to call her ‘Cruella.’… I believe she laid the foundation for what it means to expect only perfection from what you do.”
“My job allows me to be involved in the community and work with some amazing individuals—not only in the construction industry, but all across the business community.”
Jared Hamilton – 37
CEO/Founder, DrivingSales, LLC
Accomplishments: In founding DrivingSales, Jared Hamilton created the largest automotive social network in the world, where 64 percent of dealerships in North America have created a profile. He designed an online university to train staff from all sectors of the automotive industry vital career skills. Hamilton also acquired three new car dealerships, was named one of Honda’s Most Innovative Dealers and launched a car reinsurance company. Hamilton serves on the board strategy committee for the National Automotive Dealers Association and has been a guest instructor for the National Dealer’s Academy for the last five years.
Industry Involvement: As a response to the Great Recession’s impact on the automotive industry, Hamilton brought together dealers, OEMs and technology vendors in what has become the largest annual gathering of the most progressive execs in the industry. Each year, about 1,300 senior automotive execs gather at the Executive Summit to collaborate on the future of the auto industry and to fine-tune their business plans for the following year amidst the rapid pace of change.
“Get really clear about where your goals are. There are lots of different ways to solve a problem. When you know what that problem is you can unpack the various paths and pick which path is best for you … when you have clarity around your goals, you can make all the decisions that flow up to it much easier.”
Blake L. Hansen – 38
Senior Partner, MassMutual Intermountain West
Accomplishments: After only four years in the financial industry, Blake Hansen was tasked with opening a brand-new office in St. George. In just a few short years, the office had developed a robust client base and produced four New Associates of the Year and two Associates of the Year. Hansen served as president of the National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors, and in 2014 he was awarded Manager of the Year and inducted into the National Management Council.
Community Involvement: Hansen started the MassMutual Special Care Team, which helps families who have a child with special needs. The Special Care Team has sponsored and hosted several activities and educational events for families in the community.
First Job: “My first regular employment was as a janitor for a mechanic shop at Metro West concrete. It was anything but fun. At one time I had to jack hammer out a cement bowl truck. It was a rough crowd that I worked around. It made me appreciate the importance of education.”
“Each person I work with is so unique, and it is enjoyable to figure out how I can make a difference for them. In my capacity as a leader, it is enjoyable to help develop individuals to achieve their goals as a business owner.”
Chase T. Harrington – 32
Current Role: Chase Harrington oversees Entrata’s ongoing business operations, sales and product strategies. He also acts as an ambassador to Entrata’s VIPs and oversees just under 80 percent of Entrata’s over 1,000 employees.
Accomplishments: Under Harrington’s strategic direction, Entrata experienced 52 percent revenue growth in 2014, with an increase of 30,000 units to 200,000 now using Entrata Core, the company’s accounting software. In 2015, the company reached $100 million in ACV. Harrington says of the accomplishment, “I worked hard to gain respect and trust from the most respected multifamily executives as I took their feedback, championed their ideas and worked with the best team in the industry to make it all a reality.”
Favorite Utah Diversion: “I was born and raised in Texas, so I definitely have Texas pride. But, the Utah mountains and accompanying scenery are unrivaled and have helped cement my Utah pride as well.”
“I’ll be the first to admit that I don’t know everything. However, I revel in seeking knowledge and learning new things that could help me tackle and overcome impending challenges. These are the things that will ultimately help me, my team and my company to grow and succeed.”
Kelly C. Johnson – 35
Marketing Director/Autism Advocate, Scopious Marketing
Current Role: Kelly Johnson is the marketing director for Scopious Marketing, where she brings a strategic background into marketing and social media campaigns.
Accomplishments: Johnson has over a decade of experience with project management, where she has worked within the government, nonprofits, marketing and corporate industries. She is the founder and CEO of Parker Time Potions, an all-natural line of children’s body care oils, intended to help parents and children bond. As a mother of an autistic child, Johnson works in autism advocacy, donating proceeds from Parker Time Potions to autism research, and serves on the board for Carmen B. Pingree Autism Center of Learning.
Favorite Utah Diversion: “I absolutely love the dining in Utah. In the past 10 years, the cuisine, especially in downtown Salt Lake, has become world class.”
“It has been said many ways that a testament to one’s character is how they treat others. If you treat others and your relationships with maximum value, you can nurture and sustain them through all times—positive and negative. Never fail to do the right thing when a difficult choice is presented, never apologize for doing the right thing afterwards.”
Adelaide Maudsley – 39
Shareholder, Kirton McConkie, PC
Current Role: As a creditors’ rights attorney, Adelaide Maudsley represents banks, secured creditors, franchisors, finance companies, equipment lessors and other creditors in workout, restructuring, receivership, collection and bankruptcy-related matters.
Accomplishments: Maudsley is a regular speaker at the Rocky Mountain conference for American Bankruptcy Institute, the National Business Institute and the Utah Division of Real Estate. She has served as an adjunct professor at the S.J. Quinney College of Law at the University of Utah. In 2014 she was appointed to serve on the Tenth Circuit Bankruptcy Appellate Panel Rules Committee.
Role Model: “My mom is one of my role models. She has so many qualities that I wish to have. She is a great listener. She is kind to everyone and always gives others the benefit of the doubt. She also has a keen sense, an intuition, of what people need and how to help them.”
“Lawyers have had to adapt to delivering services more quickly and more cost-effectively to meet clients’ demands and, in this economy, there is greater competition for work. I have been able to adapt by continuing to be responsive and timely to clients and never sacrificing the quality of work-product delivered to clients.”
Heather Mercier – 36
SVP, Finance and Talent; Experticity
Accomplishments: Since joining Experticity in 2013, Heather Mercier has taken two different underperforming and talent-weak teams and worked with them until they became two of the highest-performing teams in the company. Mercier also initiated a payroll giving program, coordinated the summer interns in a company-wide service project and brought in an Angel Tree at Christmastime. She is currently involved with the Utah Tech Council in recruiting out-of-state talent to Utah.
Industry Evolution: “The way consumer branded product companies market to consumers is broken, and we are helping to shape this industry-defining paradigm shift and improve consumer purchasing over the next decade. … How the category is defined, as well as our role and evolution in the industry, are all big questions that we are actively pondering, listening to thought leaders, questioning ourselves and attempting to answer.”
Favorite Social Media Platform: “I do not have a Facebook account nor have I ever tweeted something. I do enjoy sharing photos with a small group of family and friends on Instagram. When I say small, it really is small; I have a whopping 61 followers and only follow 44 people.”
“A good leader is inspiring, humble and grateful. They are someone who leads from the trenches and is both extremely transparent and incredibly honest. … They provide feedback when needed, push others to challenge themselves and empower them to take on difficult tasks.”
Jacob Moon – 35
Co-Founder and Executive Vice President, Method Communications
Current Role: Jacob Moon helps lead Method Communications’ healthcare and tech practice areas, working with companies like HealthEquity, CHG Healthcare, Collective Health, the Crocker Ventures portfolio of biotech companies and Toca Boca.
Accomplishments: As a co-founder, Moon helped build Method from the ground up to become the largest integrated communications agency in Utah. He spearheaded aggressive expansion efforts to open offices in San Francisco and Los Angeles; the company achieved 90 percent staff growth in the last year and nearly 600 percent revenue growth from 2010–2015. The prestigious list of clients who have chosen to work with Method includes business leader James Lee Sorenson, as well billion-dollar startups like Credit Karma, Pivotal, Pluralsight and Qualtrics.
Favorite Utah Diversion: “I love any activity that involves my wife and kids. In the winter, I love skiing with my 6- and 7-year-old sons, and in the summer we go camping together pretty regularly. I can’t wait for my girls to grow a little (they are both under 2) so they can join us soon.”
“There aren’t many jobs where you get to rub shoulders with so many interesting and successful individuals, all of whom have a drive to change the world for the better.”
Chad Moore – 39
Managing Director, Mountain West Retail & Investment
Current Role: Chad Moore has served as Mountain West Retail & Investment’s managing director since co-founding the company with a group of brokers and partners. He also serves on the board of directors for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Salt Lake.
Accomplishments: Moore has helped guide Mountain West Retail & Investment to its current size, with 350 properties throughout the country, 40 agents and staff, and a 2015 transaction value of approximately $500 million. In his career, Moore has completed well over 1,000 transactions in over 40 states, with a total transaction volume exceeding $1 billion.
Motivation: “Commercial real estate is a tough industry. Each day is an emotional roller coaster. You have to have tough skin and work phenomenally hard. Solving problems for clients and accomplishing their objectives is what pushes me out of bed and keeps the motor running.”
Role Model: Abraham Lincoln
“I think being fair is the most important aspect of deal making. If the other side of the table never wants to make a deal with you again, it’s probably time to reevaluate your deal making ethos.”
Bubba Page – 32
Accomplishments: Bubba Page embraced entrepreneurship when he was in college, beginning with a startup that imported furniture. He moved on to start Launch Leads, an inside sales appointment setting program; he built the company without outside investment before he passed on leadership to a new president, allowing him to focus on his current company, OUTRO. In 2009, the UTC recognized Page as an Emerging Executive, and in 2014 Mercato Partners recognized him as a Rev Gen Award recipient. Page is the only startup founder from Utah to be accepted into the prestigious tech accelerator, Techstars.
Industry Evolution: “When I started my career, [sales] was all about the numbers and almost a ‘do whatever it takes to get the sale’ mentality. That has only hurt people’s long-term relationships because there was no investment in really understanding clients’ problems and needs and providing a real solution.”
Favorite Utah Diversion: “Mountain biking. I live at the base of Corner Canyon in Draper and can’t get enough of the beauty up in the mountains.”
“[I] love how the #GiveFirst mentality is catching on. The ability for individuals to give to others … with the full understanding that givers always receive more in the end. The Giving Economy is just beginning and I am very excited to be a part of it.”
Amberlie Phillips – 38
Chief Development Officer, YWCA
Accomplishments: Amberlie Phillips’ tenure at YWCA brought a significant increase in revenue for the organization, bringing the sum to $1.68 million in 2014-2015. She also spearheaded volunteer recruiting. Under Phillip’s direction, YWCA received nearly 1,600 unduplicated volunteers who contributed 30,464 hours in 2014-2015. Phillips revitalized and promoted YWCA membership, increasing its ranks to the highest it’s ever been.
Industry Evolution: “When I began my career, there were really only three ways of requesting gifts: one-on-one meetings, via letter or proposal, or over the phone. At the time, even emails were seen as too informal for philanthropic requests. Today, the YWCA shares our message and needs across multiple channels daily. … The wonderful thing is that it has made relationship building easier and, I believe, more meaningful, as individuals have many opportunities to engage as their interests and time allows.”
First Job: “I worked at T-Shirts Plus in the Layton Hills Mall when I was 15. I was too young to operate the screen-printing machine so I spent a lot of time folding shirts.”
“I experience humanity at its best every day. As a fundraiser, I am privileged to work with amazing women and men who voluntarily give their financial resources, time and expertise to make the world a better place. It is inspiring, humbling and easy to love!”
Jess Phillips – 31
Owner, Auric Solar
Accomplishments: Since co-founding Auric Solar, Jess Phillips has worked diligently to make solar more affordable for homeowners, including partnering with local financial institutions to help make financing available for customers. The residential and commercial solar company has experienced 173 percent year-over-year growth since its founding in 2010.
Rewards of the Job: “I love knowing that 25 years from now, when driving around Utah, I will be able to show my grandkids thousands of homes that still have working solar panels on the roof that Auric installed.”
First Job: Phillips worked at Lagoon at 14 years old. He had a paper route before that and worked all through high school every day.
“Being an owner and coworker makes you feel a sense of loyalty that is as real as someone would have with their own family. Our team dedicates a significant portion of their lives to Auric Solar and that is something I don’t take lightly. We have a chance to do something special as a company, and I am dedicated to seeing how many people’s lives we can effect in a positive way.”
Darren Reid – 36
Partner, Holland & Hart LLP
Current Role: Darren Reid represents clients in complex litigation in a wide range of business-related matters, including commercial, employment, real estate and white-collar litigation.
Accomplishments: Reid was voted into the partnership of Holland & Hart just nine years after graduating from law school, a rare accomplishment for an attorney. He is known as a dedicated litigator who works tirelessly to champion his clients. Reid has served as a member of the Utah Valley University Alumni board of trustees for the past six years, where he has assisted with scholarship initiatives, student mentoring and fundraising efforts, among other things.
Industry Evolution: “Electronic discovery has altered the litigation landscape, increasing efficiencies in some respects, while increasing costs to clients in other respects. Managing and securing electronic data are critical business problems facing clients and best practices often shape the outcome of litigation.”
Role Model: “My father, Coach Roger Reid.”
“[Good leaders walk] that fine line between listening and doing, building consensus when advisable, making tough decisions when necessary.”
Kurt Richards – 38
Executive Vice President, ASEA LLC
Current Role: Kurt Richards oversees marketing, public relations, communications and corporate development for ASEA. He is also the key executive who leads the company’s research and development efforts. At Reoxcyn, ASEA’s research and development arm, he works closely with laboratories and universities on future products and new technologies.
Accomplishments: Richards has nearly two decades of direct sales and global business experience, which has enabled him to play key roles in managing sales, contract negotiations and relations with local governments. Since Richards started with ASEA, the company has gone from $20,000 in sales to more than $70 million last year.
Role Model: “My wife and my mother are amazing role models that I look up to. Through them I see great examples of true character, honesty, service and humility. They allow me to stay grounded as to what is most important in life.”
“The thing I enjoy the most is the challenge of working in a complicated and changing environment that allows me the daily opportunity to be both strategic and tactical.”
Jeff Rossi – 36
Executive Director, Cushman & Wakefield / Commerce
Achievements: In his 15 years at Cushman & Wakefield / Commerce, Jeff Rossi has achieved a total sales volume of $1.5 billion, with sales in 2014 totaling $400 million. His most notable deals include a 200,000-square-foot lease in Lehi for Ancestry, a 125,000-square-foot lease in Lehi for 1-800 Contacts and a 125,000-square-foot headquarter lease in Draper. He represents other significant clients like Adobe, Solutionreach, StorageCraft, SolarCity, Prosper Marketplace, Thumbtack and others.
Industry Evolution: “Many things have changed since I came into this business 15 years ago, from the dress code to the way commercial properties are presented to the availability of data. I focus on utilizing technology and available data to make better decisions.”
First Job: “Like many young kids, I mowed the neighbor’s lawns for baseball card money. I had a pair of hand shears that I used to trim the lawn, which still makes me laugh to think that I’d edge the entire lawn on my hands and knees. Some innovation would have been fantastic as a 10-year-old!”
“We live in a relationship-based society and I’ve always tried, though not always effectively, to live by the golden rule. Treating others with kindness, fairness and with an open mind is the most important value that I bring to the office every day.”
Brian Rosander – 39
Shareholder, Parsons Behle & Latimer
Current Role: Brian Rosander is a shareholder at Parsons Behle & Latimer, where he specializes in assisting his clients with complex real restate and corporate transactions.
Accomplishments: Rosander represents major clients at Parsons Behle & Latimer and is also an adjunct professor at the University of Utah in the Master of Real Estate Development (MRED) program. He is also a frequent speaker and lecturer on real estate, finance and related topics before audiences ranging from real estate professionals, law and MRED students, business leaders, and the legal community at large. Notable past and recent achievements include being named the 2015 Young Alumnus of the Year by the S.J. Quinney College of Law and being repeatedly nominated by his legal peers as a “Rising Star” in the Mountain States Super Lawyers magazine.
Motivation: “I’m motivated by helping to drive my clients’ interests. Getting the results they’re looking for and getting up every day hoping to play a meaningful role in the projects their doing.”
“I define success more through things like peace of mind and the amount of difference that you’re making.”
David Royce – 38
CEO, Aptive Environmental
Current Role: David Royce is founder and CEO of Aptive Environmental; his plans are to build Aptive into the largest privately held pest control provider in North America by 2020.
Achievements: Over the last decade, Royce has built and sold three businesses, most lately his pest control company Alterra in November of last year, which was purchased by Terminix. Royce grew Alterra, which provides environmentally responsible pest solutions, to more than 300,000 customers in 1,300 cities. In three short years, it became one of the 15 largest residential pest control companies in the country. Royce was awarded the national EY Entrepreneur Of The Year Award last fall.
First Job: Valentino’s Pizza at age 14.
“I enjoy disrupting the status quo as an industry frontrunner. Every day I try to think of one new idea to improve the company. This provides an average of 260 new ways to improve and grow annually. Testing these ideas to determine which will work and shape the company for the better gets me out of bed each morning.”
Emily Rushton – 32
Executive Vice President; Prince, Perelson & Associates
Accomplishments: Emily Rushton is partner to Prince Perelson’s temporary staffing division, where she created a new division called Project Solutions for Prince Perelson. Her efforts have more than doubled the revenue of the temporary staffing division, increasing it by 185 percent, creating a multi-million dollar revenue stream for the firm.
Industry Evolution: “Historically, ‘high volume’ staffing has had a stigma that if you use an agency to staff large amounts of employees, then you have to sacrifice quality. It has been extremely gratifying to change this misperception one client and project at a time.”
Favorite Social Media Platform: “LinkedIn—it has really been a game-changer for my industry and it helps me know what is happening with both my clients and candidates. It’s a great resource for staying connected and informed in the business world.”
“Every day I remind myself to work as hard as I can within the areas that I can control. It’s with a clear mind that I have peace with what I’m able to accomplish. If things fall apart, it’s never because I didn’t try hard enough.”
Joe Salisbury – 37
Partner, Candlelight Homes
Current Role: Joe Salisbury is partner at Candlelight Homes and DAI (Development Associates Inc), as well as owner of Platinum Ties and Phatties, and Parade Craze.
Accomplishments: Candlelight Homes and DAI have experienced not only significant financial success, but have been recognized by many industry leaders as well. Among these awards and honors is a five-year streak as one of the 100 Fastest Growing Companies in Utah by MountainWest Capital Network; Builder Magazine’s Top 200 Builders in the nation; and a No. 1027 rank in Inc.’s list of the 5000 Fastest-Growing Companies. In 2011, Salisbury entered a new home design in the Parade of Homes—Candlelight Homes’ first entry into the program—and won all the awards in the category.
Favorite Social Media Platform: “Instagram, because a great deal of my business involves photography and we have a strong following there.”
“I love creating and I love working with people to solve problems. At Candlelight Homes, we have very clear and concise goals. I love waking up every day to figure out how to make lemonade from big fat lemons.”
Angelina Tsu – 39
Vice President, Legal Counsel; Zions Bancorporation
Current Role: Angelina Tsu is the vice president and legal counsel at Zions Bank, where she specializes in commercial litigation, creditor’s rights litigation and securities.
Accomplishments: Tsu is currently the Utah State Bar president, and she was the first female attorney of color to be elected to that role. At Zions Bank, she serves on the Diversity Council as a board member and as chair of the bank’s Asian and Pacific Islander Business Forum, helping to host events that foster networking and inclusion among employees of Zions Bank.
First Job: “I picked and packaged pears with migrant workers at an orchard in northern California. I was twelve—but there were people younger than me working as well. Whenever I read about immigration reform and especially the DREAMers, I think of my first job and the incredible kindness my co-workers showed me during our time together.”
“As a lawyer, I often see people in very difficult situations. I appreciate the opportunity to support people I really believe in during those times. The fact that I also get to help them to solve problems is the icing on the cake.”
Wick Udy – 36
Senior Vice President, Jones Lang LaSalle
Accomplishments: After playing for the Seattle Mariners, Wick Udy found a new career in real estate. With over 800 transactions—exceeding over $800 million of cumulative value—under his belt, Udy has represented clients in the acquisition or disposition of over 5.5 million square feet of facilities and 1,200 acres of land. In 2015, Wick was named CCIM’s Industrial Broker of the Year for the Salt Lake City.
Rewards of the Job: “The thrill of the pursuit for new business. In our industry when we close a deal, we are essentially unemployed and looking to get hired again.”
Favorite Utah Diversion: “Triple A baseball. We are lucky enough to have one of the sweetest ballparks (Smith’s Ballpark) and organizations (Anaheim Angels) in the minor leagues.”
“Technology and research has become an integral part to winning business. It is a daily process to make sure we are up to speed with the most recent comparable or the newest warehouse development.”
Nate Walkingshaw – 38
Chief Product Officer, Pluralsight
Accomplishments: Nate Walkingshaw began his career as an EMT in the 2000s. During this time, he realized he could make a difference in the medical field. He created a company called Paramed and focused solely on product development for the medical industry. Walkingshaw owns patents to several innovative medical devices, such as the Paraslyde. In 2015, Walkingshaw moved on to launch O.C. Tanner’s Tanner Labs, which allowed O.C. Tanner to expand into new territory with employee wellness through products like wearables and mobile apps. With Tanner Labs, Walkingshaw fathered Welbe, a real-time wellness dashboard, and Gratzi, an app that thanks and awards employees. At Pluralsight, he manages a team of 22 product developers working to stay ahead of Pluralsight’s one million end users.
First Job: “My first ‘real,’ well-paid job was working at Enge flowers, a local full-service nursery and landscaping company. It allowed me to work in a natural outdoor environment and do something fun. I loved plants, interacting with customers and helping them design their next big home and garden project.”
“I’ve always believed impactful leaders have this unique ability to openly talk about failure because I have found that really profound leaders value both great successes and failures. True leadership can show you how to learn from failure.”
Alec Wilkins – 38
Senior Vice President, Product Development and Chief Architect; Overstock.com, Inc.
Accomplishments: In 2000, Alec Wilkins helped launch Membership Banking—one of the first banking products that was available exclusively online. He then worked for several years creating new payment products in the financial services industry. In 2008, he founded Wildbeard Technologies, a mobile payments company. In 2012, Wilkins joined Overstock.com as vice president of application development. Collaborating closely with Overstock.com president Stormy Simon, Wilkins’ team also coordinates Overstock’s sponsorship of the Wounded Warrior Program, an organization dedicated to providing support programs and services to wounded veterans. He also provides support to the retail technology that connects animal shelters across the country to potential adopters. This program, Pet Adoptions by Overstock, produces no revenue for the company and has helped nearly 50,000 people find and adopt pets throughout the nation since its implementation in 2014.
First Job: “I dressed up in a penguin costume and handed out ice cream cones to kids. I was 13. Penguin costumes are very, very hot.”
“When I first started developing online products, there was a general uneasiness about the internet itself. Today’s consumer has high expectations of usability, customer service, and expectations about their online experience. Online shopping has evolved so quickly, today the experience is the central focus.”
Scott Wilson – 38
President, Beehive Broadband
Accomplishments: Scott Wilson joined the Beehive Broadband team in 2009, quickly rising through the ranks before becoming president in 2013. Wilson scrapped the company’s business model for an entirely new program that pivoted Beehive from focusing on rural areas to servicing metropolitan areas as well. Under Wilson’s leadership, Beehive Broadband became partners with many local and national carries, such as Leve 3, XO, CenturyLink and Comcast. He revamped and oversaw the rollout of Beehive’s IPTV system at Utah Valley University and Brigham Young University, and opened markets for its fiber-to-the-premise network in Park City, Morgan County, Utah County, South Salt Lake Valley and downtown Salt Lake City.
Role Model: “My father spent his whole career in higher education. He never determined his success based on his title or salary, but rather his ability to make an impact on the people he worked with and the school he worked to grow. His approach, combined with a strong work ethic, has made him successful in all he has done.”
“I’ve found the key to adapting is being able to constantly evaluate what is working well, and what may be improved upon in the future, and adjusting team goals accordingly.”
Stephen A. Wright – 36
Director of Strategic Communications, R&R Partners
Current Role: Steven Wright is responsible for managing over $9.5 million in annual local billings. Wright is also an adjunct professor at Brigham Young University, and presents regularly at Westminster College and the University of Utah.
Accomplishments: Wright’s social cause public awareness campaigns have garnered attention and accolades for their effectiveness. Both his ParentsEmpowered Underage Drinking prevention campaign and the Utah Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over campaign have received national honors. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, MAAD and the Utah Department of Public Safety, Highway Safety Office have also honored Wright for his efforts. He received the 2012 Uplift Utah Families program award, as well as back-to-back W3 awards for online excellence in social cause marketing.
Favorite Social Media Platform: “In my opinion, Pinterest is a modern version of the coffee house from the Age of Enlightenment, as it brings together a collection of minds to borrow and share ideas in an effort to solve problems and create opportunity.”
“Budgets have tightened, expectations have increased and clients demand faster, more sustainable results. I am a believer that the modern currency is innovation! Companies that fail to innovate cease to exist. R&R Partners and my team are very proud of our approach to innovation.”