Global Advisory Board

The SAMS Institute is advised by a diverse group of global business, academic, and community leaders. They provide insight into sales, marketing, and other issues facing our key stakeholders to ensure the institute remains responsive to our communities’ needs. Serving on the board also gives leaders the opportunity to share their knowledge and expertise with others in a way that will positively impact students, businesses, and society as a whole.

Charlie Cole

Global Chief eCommerce Officer at Samsonite, Chief Digital Officer at Tumi and active advisor

Seattle, WA

Charlie Cole joined TUMI in 2015 as the Company’s Chief Digital Officer. In this role, Mr. Cole is responsible for overseeing and developing the brands’ national and international e-commerce and digital platforms. Since Samsonite’s acquisition of Tumi in 2016, Charlie has also taken the role of Global Chief eCommerce Officer for Samsonite Corporation – which includes oversight of global strategy for brands such as Samsonite, American Tourister, Hartmann, Gregory, High Sierra and others.

Mr. Cole brings a mix of entrepreneurial and institutional knowledge to the Company with success in both fields, and a focus on creating structures to empower creativity driven by energy and objectivity. Prior to joining TUMI, Mr. Cole held various leadership positions, including serving as CEO of The Line, and head of e-commerce for Lucky Brand and Schiff Nutrition, the largest acquisition of a VMS company in the history of Wall Street.

Anja Crotts

Senior Enterprise Account Executive, Adobe

Seattle, WA

Anja Crotts is a technology sales leader at Adobe, where she manages partnerships with enterprise-level organizations. She is responsible for C-level relationships and driving success across the enterprise. As an individual contributor, she excels in relationship-based selling and driving loyalty with her customers. Previously she was a sales team manager responsible for planning and delivering on her team’s annual quota, increasing pipeline, and developing new lines of business. As a Value Selling expert, she contributes on a strategic level internally and with her clients, providing valuable insights and strategic direction. She is extremely driven, voracious about learning, and poised to grow within Adobe.

Anja is based in Seattle but has worked with clients on a national, as well as global, basis. A former college athlete, her competitive spirit is manifest in all aspects of life, including her efforts with charities to which she donates a large amount of time. She is a passionate local Seattle music and sports fan, and you can find her involved in just about anything northwest based.

Reed Cundiff

General Manager, Customer & Market Research, Microsoft Corporation

Seattle, WA

Reed joined Microsoft in 2005 and led the development of Microsoft’s first Customer Research System, a portfolio of market research methodology best practices designed to answer critical business questions at each stage of a product’s development, go-to-market and in-market lifecycle. Reed is currently the General Manager of Microsoft’s Customer & Market Research team, comprised of 100 research consultants in the US and Europe. The team consults with senior leaders across the company and presents insights-based perspectives that impact a wide range of business decisions spanning the marketing and engineering. During his time in this role, Reed has spearheaded the evolution of the insights discipline at the company in a number of ways, including the creation and management of a successful Knowledge Process Outsourcing function, expansion of Advanced Analytic capabilities, harnessing of social intelligence to inform product development and marketing, and embracing a variety of new behavioral, financial and perceptual data sets to deliver deeper and more precise insights to internal stakeholders. Prior to joining Microsoft, Reed was a market analyst with Gartner and The Yankee Group, focused on Enterprise Resource Planning, Supply Chain Management and Administrative Applications. He is a graduate of Wesleyan College with BA in Pre-Industrial European History. Reed and his wife Kelly live in Bellevue with their two children and enjoy a variety of outdoor sports and activities in the Pacific Northwest.

Amanda DePalma

Vice President of Marketing, FUJIFILM Sonosite

Bellevue, WA

Amanda DePalma is a growth and innovation-oriented marketing leader with a passion for developing high performing teams that advance patient care through customer-driven strategies and focused execution. In her current role as Vice President of Marketing for FUJIFILM Sonosite, Amanda has global responsibility for all aspects of strategy and marketing. She brings over 25 years of experience at market leading companies including Guidant, Abbott Vascular, Kimberly-Clark Healthcare, Edwards Lifesciences and Philips Healthcare. During the course of her career, she has led cross-functional teams in the development and launch of over 30 new products and solutions. Amanda is committed to fostering a culture of inclusion and diversity and serves on the Board of Directors of MedtechWomen and as Vice Chair of the AdvaMed Women’s Executive Network. Amanda received her BS in Marketing and MBA from the University of Florida. She resides outside of Seattle, WA with her husband and sons where she enjoys an active outdoor lifestyle.

Andrea Eaker

Research Manager Guest Research & Insights, Alaska Airlines

Seattle, WA

Andrea Eaker leads the Guest Research & Insight practice at Alaska Airlines. In addition to post-travel guest insights, she leads ad hoc research initiatives, brand tracking, and employee research. Results from her work help the business identify opportunities, track experiences, and optimize the Alaska experience across all stages of the customer journey.

Prior to Alaska, she spent thirteen years on the supplier side in primary research first at Gartner/Hansa GCR then at TNS/Kantar, where she worked primarily with high tech clients on brand and CX research.

Outside work, Andrea is an avid traveler, reader, and coffee connoisseur. She has a BA in English from Willamette University and a MA in Organizational Communication from Purdue University.

Tim Evenson

Sr. Dir. of Sales, Americas for Microsoft Financing

Seattle, WA

Tim Evenson is currently leading all sales activities for the Philips Diagnostic Imaging and Patient Monitoring businesses in the Pacific Northwest. He works closely with healthcare institutions in Washington, Oregon and Hawaii to create and deliver innovative solutions to the challenges facing the healthcare industry today. Over his 27 year career, Tim has held a variety of leadership positions in sales, marketing and finance, primarily in the healthcare and IT industries. The majority of his career has been in the Equipment Financing business, providing financial solutions for customers acquiring the IT or healthcare technology they need to meet their customers’ needs. Tim has been with Philips Healthcare since 2002, when he joined the company to help launch Philips Medical Capital (PMC). PMC is a joint venture between Philips Healthcare and De Lage Landen, a Dutch leasing company owned by RaboBank. In the 12 years since PMC was founded, Tim led the Sales and Marketing efforts of the company to produce over $3 billion in financing volume. Prior to joining Philips, Tim worked for Dell Financial Services (DFS), where he arranged over $500MM in lease financing for laptops, desktops and servers for Boeing. Before DFS, Tim was a member of a 5 person team at MetLife Capital that specialized in cross-border, large ticket leverage lease financing. His primary responsibility was pricing highly complex financing transactions for aircraft, rail cars, and manufacturing facilities around the world. Tim’s career started as a credit analyst for NCR Credit Corporation in Dayton, OH, where he progressed through the ranks to move from credit into sales. Those years of working closely with customers to understand their business and financial needs and develop solutions that helped solve their challenges laid the foundation for his entire career. At Philips Healthcare and PMC, Tim has worked closely with the University of Washington’s Foster School of Business MBA Intern program since 2007. He has also served for 8 years as a mentor for 1st and 2nd year MBA students, and is proud that several of his former mentees are now full-time employees at Philips Healthcare. Tim earned his MBA from the American Graduate School of International Management (Thunderbird campus) with a concentration in International Finance and Spanish. He also has an undergraduate degree in Economics from the University of Nebraska in Lincoln. Tim and his wife Karen live in Sammamish, Washington with their daughter, Claire, and their son, Alex. When not working, Tim loves to fly fish and coach youth sports.

Richard Fabian


Seattle, WA

As Former Vice President of Image Systems Marketing, Rich Fabian led all demand generation activities for the largest business group in Royal Philips. The Imaging Systems Business Group consists of Interventional X-ray, Ultrasound, Diagnostic X-ray, CT, MRI, PET/CT, SPECT, and IntelliSpace Portal. Rich’s career has progressed at Philips where he has held various leadership positions. Prior to his current position, he was the VP and General Manager for the global Nuclear Medicine Business Unit. He also led sales and marketing for the largest business unit in Imaging Systems–responsible for Interventional X-ray, Surgery, and Diagnostic X-ray. Under his leadership, the business grew significant market share in a period of four years. He brings years of medical experience from STERIS Corporation in Mentor, Ohio, the world leader in infection prevention and surgical support products, where he served in many capacities, including Financial Controller and VP of Operations. At Philips Healthcare, Rich has been the Executive Sponsor of the University of Washington’s Foster School of Business MBA Intern program since 2004–hiring over 50 interns over the past 8 years that led to over 35 full-time positions at Philips. He is a member of the Foster’s Business School Advisory Board as well as a mentor for first-year students.

Rich earned his MBA from the University of Pittsburgh where he concentrated in marketing and finance. His undergraduate degree in Economics is from the University of Michigan where he distinguished himself as a two-time Big Ten swim team champion. A resident of Sammamish, Washington, Rich and his wife, Suzette, have two daughters (Becca and Ashely). In his spare time, Rich still swims on a Masters Swim team and plays blues and classic rock guitar.

Jackie Feng

Senior Manager, Advanced Technology Autonomous Mobility (ATAM), Amazon

Seattle, WA

Jackie Feng joined Amazon in November 2018 as the Senior Manager of Advanced Technology Autonomous Mobility in Amazon Robotics Organization. In this role, Mr. Feng is responsible for Amazon Mobility strategy definition and execution. Amazon’s vision is to be earth's most customer centric company, in last two and half years, his team has been developing ground-up Mobility solutions with close-to-edge technologies, and launched several mobility products in Amazon fulfillment network with increased process efficiency and productivity and brought value to thousands of millions of Amazon customers with a better service (faster, cheaper and with better quality).

Jackie’s career is built upon his strategy and approach to how to serve customers better. While working in Shanghai, he served as bid-win manager in TRW Automotive and provided active and passive safety products & services to various car makers in China, Japan, Korea and South East Asia. After creating a solid customer portfolio for Asian market, he transferred to Michigan, USA and started to explore the NA market. He built a global team with members from US, UK, Germany, Brazil and Czech Republic, and successfully launched the new safety products within 2 years. His focus then switched over to autonomous mobility technologies, with partnership with McKinsey, as Chief Engineer in ADAS (Advanced Driving Assistance System) division, he and his team in US, Korea and Italy created go-to-market strategy, built up ADAS product portfolio and served major car makers in global footprint.

Jackie earned his EMBA in University of Washington where he was focusing on Marketing and Finance. He got his Master of Science degree in Automotive Engineering in Jilin University back in China. Jackie, together with his wife, Vanessa and two kids (Jimmy & Emily), are living in Sammamish, WA and enjoying boating, hiking, biking and other sports. They love music, jazz, in particular, don’t be surprised if you see them in a jazz concert.

Elissa Fink

Chief Marketing Officer, Tableau Software

Seattle, WA

Elissa Fink is Tableau Software’s Chief Marketing Officer. With 20+ years helping companies improve their marketing operations through applied data analysis, Elissa has held executive positions in marketing, business strategy, product management, and product development. Prior to Tableau, Elissa was EVP Marketing at IXI Corporation, now owned by Equifax. She has also served in executive positions at Tele Atlas (acquired by TomTom), TopTier Software (acquired by SAP), and Nielsen/Claritas. Elissa also sold national advertising for the Wall Street Journal. She’s a frequent speaker and has spoken at conferences including the DMA, NCDM, PSAMA and others. Elissa is a graduate of Santa Clara University and holds an MBA in Marketing and Decision Systems from the University of Southern California. In 2013, Elissa joined the Board of the Washington Technology Industry Association (WTIA). Elissa first discovered Tableau late one afternoon at her previous company. Three hours later, she was still “at play” with her data. “After just a few minutes using the product, I was getting answers to questions that were taking my previous company’s programmers weeks to create. It was instantly obvious that Tableau was on a special mission with something unique to offer the world. I just had to be a part of it.”

Filip Francke

CEO, Ravensburger North America

Seattle, WA

Filip’s career is built on making connections and providing choice. He develops and executes action plans that deliver products and services to end-users through indirect and direct sales and communication channels. He created his first go-to-market (GTM) strategy as Head of Sales for a logistics start-up, Envirotainer Inc., in Los Angeles. While there, he connected Envirotainer with customers that needed to deliver temperature sensitive products, from pineapples to vaccines. After leaning to surf and apply sunscreen, Filip moved back home to Sweden to work for Scandinavian Airlines (SAS). While there he held several roles that expanded consumer choice. As Vice President of Customer Loyalty, he helped SAS elevate and adapt its GTM strategy for multichannel marketing in the emerging digital age. Filip then moved to Belgium to run the dishwasher business for Electrolux Home Appliances and lead a team of engineers from all over Europe. He eventually became CEO of Electrolux for the Belgium, Netherlands and Luxembourg (Benelux). Those experiences provided a deep-dive into the challenges and opportunities businesses face in operating across culturally diverse markets. From Brussels, Filip moved to Seattle to take his current role as the US & South America Vice President and GM of outdoor juggernaut Helly Hansen. Filip is adapting B2B and B2C strategies to the rapid changes in consumer behavior and retail, and also having a lot of fun testing products while sailing and skiing. Filip, a Swede, met his American wife, Glory in a bar in Dallas. Their three kids were born in Sweden, spent 6 years in Brussels, and now live in Seattle, the sunniest place the family has called home. Together they love to bike, ski, climb and hike all over the Pacific Northwest. Filip is a graduate of Uppsala University & Grenoble Ecole Superieur de Commerce with a BA in Business and the History of Economics.

Travis Gelbrich

Managing Director, Guest Experience & Design Alaska Airline

Seattle, WA

Travis has spent his entire career helping and advocating for customers. During 20 years at Microsoft, he held multiple roles focused on customer service, experience and advocacy. This included leading teams focused on Microsoft Store support, Windows and Office product activation, and Answer Desk support offerings. Recently, Travis joined Alaska Airlines as Managing Director, Guest Experience & Design where he is responsible for customer insights and improving the customer experience.

Rodney Gillespie

Vice President of Oncology Sales and Marketing, Solid Tumors Janssen Oncology

Rodney is currently the Vice President of Oncology Sales and Marketing, Solid Tumors for Janssen Oncology a Division of Johnson and Johnson. He is responsible for the overall strategy for the Solid Tumor Franchise while driving market share to help more patients with Prostate, Bladder and Lung cancer.

Rodney was most recently the Country President of South Africa for AstraZeneca, responsible for the overall strategy, investment and sustainable growth across the region. Rodney’s tenure with AstraZeneca began in the United States where he held several senior roles in market access, marketing and sales leadership, before assuming roles in the UK and in South Africa. He has successfully led global product and brand teams in driving product launch performance in the US and Europe. In addition, he served as the Head of Launch Excellence for Oncology in Asia, Middle East & Africa, Russia and Latin America. Prior to this Rodney worked for Amgen where he launched multiple oncology products.

Rodney has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Commerce & Engineering, Drexel University, Philadelphia, PA and Master of Business Administration, University of Washington, Seattle, WA.

Rodney has a passion for participating in activities/organizations that allow him to give back to disadvantaged communities and kids.

Alex Goldenberg

Managing Partner, President and Chief Executive Officer

Seattle, WA

Since founding AGCP in 2009, Alex has been involved in every aspect of the firm's growth. In addition to client-delivery work, he sets the strategic direction for the company and oversees areas of growth.

Prior to founding AGCP, Alex spent a decade in Accenture's Management Consulting practice serving clients in High Tech, Media and Federal Government sectors.

Alex's areas of expertise include channel, sales and marketing strategy, change management, and program and project management. He holds a BS from Georgetown University and an MBA from the University of Washington.

Pam Greer

Vice President Global Consumer & Partner Insights, Starbucks

Seattle, WA

Pam Greer joined Starbucks in 2011 and is currently the vice president of global consumer and partner insights and a member of the Starbucks global strategy leadership team In this role Pam and her team lead marketing and partner (i.e., employee) research for Starbucks. The global consumer and partner insights team works closely with business teams throughout the company and across the globe to bring the consumer, customer, and employee perspectives into decision making. The research around consumer and customers supports decision making in product development, marketing and loyalty programs, customer service requirements, and store environment. The team’s work in the employment insights space provides perspectives on the evolution of the workforce, employee engagement, and employment value proposition. Pam’s career in insights spans over 20 years and includes insights roles at Leo Burnett, Universal Studios, The Walt Disney Company and Mattel Inc. Pam has a BA from Beloit College in Government and Sociology and an MA from Northwestern University in Political Science. She lives on Mercer Island with her husband Jay and their three children Kate, Matthew, and Sam.

Ken Johnston

AI driven Business Intelligence Data Science Manager, Microsoft

Renton, WA

Ken manages the Commercial Business Intelligence Group and Responsible AI initiatives for the Microsoft Core Operating Systems and Intelligent Edge team. He joined Microsoft in 1998 and has managed engineering, service operations, data labeling, and data science teams spread across the Europe, Asia, North America and South America. Primarily he has developed and shipped cloud services but for the past decade has focused on AI and ML based projects and products. He is a frequent keynote presenter, trainer, blogger, and author on software testing and data science. For three years he served as the Microsoft Director of Test Excellence. He earned his MBA from the University of Washington, is a coauthor of How We Test Software at Microsoft, and is a contributing author to Experiences of Test Automation: Case Studies of Software Test Automation. Ken and his wife Karen along with their two children live in Renton Washington. For fun, he and his son are restoring a 1966 Ford Mustang. You can contact him through LinkedIn.

Mike Kichline

Managing Director, Accenture

Seattle, WA

Ajay K. Kohli

Regents’ Professor and Gary T. and Elizabeth R. Jones Chair

Atlanta, GA

Ajay K. Kohli is Regents’ Professor and Gary T. and Elizabeth R. Jones Chair at Georgia Tech’s Scheller College of Business. He previously taught at Emory University, Harvard Business School and The University of Texas at Austin, and at several prestigious universities outside the US.

His research focuses on market orientation, customer solutions, sales management and B2B marketing.

Dr. Kohli has received three honorary doctorates, and is an AMA Fellow, EMAC Fellow, and ISBM Fellow. He is a former Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Marketing, and currently serves as Associate/Area Editor of Journal of Marketing, Journal of Marketing Research, and International Journal of Research in Marketing.  

He has received several career contribution awards including the prestigious Paul D. Converse award and the AMA/McGraw Hill/Irwin Award. His research has been recognized with several long-term impact awards including the Sheth Foundation / Journal of Marketing award (twice), and the ISBM-David T. Wilson-Sheth Foundation award.

Dr. Kohli worked in industry for six years in sales/distribution management, and in marketing strategy consulting. He has consulted with several companies including 3M, Accenture, Coca-Cola, Dow Chemical, Halliburton, IBM, Texas Instruments, and the World Bank among others. 

Chuck Lillis, PhD

Chairman of University Oregon’s Board of Trustees, Board member of SomaLogic, SuperValu, and Williams Companies, and Past CEO of MediaOne

Dr. Lillis currently serves as a board member of several public and privately-owned companies including SuperValu Inc., the nation’s 10th largest food retailer, and Williams Companies, a leading producer and transporter of natural gas in the United States. He is also co-founder and managing partner of LoneTree Capital, a private equity group that invests primarily in the communications/information industry. Chuck Lillis is the chairman for the University of Oregon’s Board of Trustees.

Previously, Lillis served as Chairman and CEO of Media One Group, Inc. from 1997 to 2000 and as CEO from 1995 to 1997. MediaOne owned and operated domestic and international cable and telephone communications systems, international wireless, and interactive multimedia service businesses. The company operated in 22 countries and was a Fortune 150 (NYSE) market cap entity when it was purchased by AT&T in 2000.

A three-year veteran of the U.S. Army, Lillis’s academic accomplishments include serving as dean of the College of Business at the University of Colorado from 1984 to 1985 and professor of business at Washington State University from 1972 to 1980.

Lillis holds a bachelor’s degree and M.B.A. from the University of Washington and a Ph.D. in business from the University of Oregon. In his spare time, he works on programs sponsored by the Lillis Foundation, a charitable organization founded to help underprivileged youth in the Denver area.

Christy Marble

Chief Marketing Officer, Pantheon Systems

Seattle, WA

Christy Marble is Chief Marketing Officer of Pantheon, a leading WebOps Platform that gives marketers and developers control of their websites so they can deliver business results. An international SaaS marketing expert and change agent, she is passionate about creating purpose-lead cultures that empower high-performance teams to delight customers and deliver significant brand equity, market share, revenue growth and return on investment. In over 20 years as a B2B and a B2C marketing executive in the financial services, marketing services and software industries she has overseen mar tech and digital transformations, product, website and partner launches, acquisitions and integrations, successful rebranding, market expansion and multi-billion-dollar growth.

Previously, as CMO of SAP Concur, the global leader in travel and spend management, Christy’s multi-national teams grew pipeline from $250M to beyond $1 billion through industry verticalization, small business, channel and rapid market expansion into China, South Korea, Brazil and the Nordics among others. As CMO of Visier, her brand and growth initiatives established the company as the people analytics industry leader. As head of marketing at PE-owned insurance software company, Vertafore, Ms. Marble oversaw commercialization of the company’s first SaaS product. In 8 years heading brand and consumer marketing at student lender, Sallie Mae, she oversaw the launch and growth of the company’s $1 billion consumer brand. At E-centives (acquired by Catalina Marketing) and Claritas, she brought consumer databases, segmentation and digital marketing capabilities to consumer-packaged goods and financial services industry giants including Nestle, Purina, Reckitt Benckiser, Gerber, Charles Schwab, Farmers Insurance and Bank of America.

Christy holds an MBA from the Anderson School of Management at UCLA and a Bachelor of Arts from Pepperdine University. She has also completed the Chief Marketing Officer Executive Education Program at Northwestern University Kellogg School of Management as well as UW Foster School of Business, Women Board Directors Development Program. She lives in the greater Seattle area where she advises early stage start-ups including Fenix Commerce.

Brad McMullen

Vice President of North America Sales, Boeing Commercial Airplanes

Seattle, WA

Brad McMullen manages the relationships with all of Boeing’s airline customers in the United States and Canada. As vice president of North America Sales for Boeing Commercial Airplanes, he leads the sales of Boeing airplanes and services to customers throughout the region. Before assuming his current position in August 2012, McMullen was vice president, Sales for Australia, Japan, New Zealand and the Pacific Islands. He assumed that role after serving as sales director for All Nippon Airways (ANA). He joined Sales 11 years ago and has been responsible for a variety of customers in the Americas and Leasing Sales Groups. Prior to joining the Sales organization, McMullen was a financial analyst in Boeing Commercial Airplanes’ Marketing organization, supporting sales campaigns throughout Asia, Europe and the Americas. He also supported the development of U.S. Export-Import Bank studies to help Boeing customers obtain financing for their Boeing airplane purchases. McMullen joined Boeing in 1990 as a financial analyst in the Supplier Management organization. Early in his career, he managed a group responsible for product development estimating and business case analysis for new and derivative wide-body airplane programs. Subsequently, he managed the Finance organization on the 747-500/600 Program as well as the Change Estimating organization spanning all wide-body aircraft. McMullen is a 1990 graduate of the University of Puget Sound’s Business Leadership Program, earning a Bachelor of Arts degree in Finance. In 2002 he was awarded an M.B.A. from the University of Washington, graduating Magna Cum Laude.  In 2005, he completed the Advanced Management Program from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.

Stewart Meyer

Director, Brand & Creative, PEMCO Mutual Insurance Company

Seattle, WA

Stewart Meyer serves as Director, Brand & Creative at PEMCO Insurance. He’s spent 20+ years in marketing and communications spanning media, retail, health & wellness, and technology at Fortune 100 companies (Amazon, Best Buy), start-ups (Arivale, Kinetix), and non-profit (KUOW).

Prior to PEMCO, Stewart led marketing for Amazon Kids+, a digital subscription for kids 3-12, where he oversaw brand awareness, subscriber acquisition & engagement, and go-to-market strategy for the US, Canada, UK, Germany, and Japan.

Prior to Amazon Kids+, Stewart served as Chief Marketing Officer at KUOW, where helped a 65-year-old public radio station transform into a digital-first, public media powerhouse. Stewart led KUOW through a re-articulation of its mission, vision, and values, built the organization’s first marketing department, and oversaw development of a 24-month digital roadmap to ensure KUOW could serve new audiences via podcasts, smart speakers, and social media.

Stewart’s early career includes leading marketing for Amazon Payments, serving as Strategy Director at digital ad agency Razorfish, marketing leadership roles with Best Buy and MicroStrategy, and management consulting at Booz Allen & Hamilton. Stewart has taught a “Principles of Marketing” course for the University of Washington’s Certificate in Strategic Marketing.

He holds a BA from the University of Pennsylvania and an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management.

Sanaz Namdar

Vice President of Strategic Planning and Analytics, Dell

Seattle, WA

Sanaz Namdar is a leader in Microsoft’s sales strategy organization pioneering Behavioral Analytics in the B2B space. Her team’s mission is to produce leading edge insights and analytics that are tied to growth hypothesis informing Microsoft’s worldwide sales strategy. Her passion is exploring, experimenting, and harnessing behavioral data in a predictive fashion to better fuel strategic decisions and partnering with sales leaders across the globe to analyze the impact of data-driven sales decisions.

Prior to Microsoft, Sanaz was a leader in Accenture’s Sales Transformation practice where she consulted executive level clients across the globe and across industries (Retail, High-Tech and NGO sector); She also worked and lived in different parts of the world during her 11-year consulting journey.

Sanaz is a published author in HBR and has spoken at the Gartner CSO conference and multiple academic seminars. She loves collaborating with academia and is passionate about closing the gap between universities and companies.

Sanaz holds a BS and MS degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Washington. She’s currently pursuing her Master’s degree in Industrial Organizational Psychology from Harvard University.

Eric C. Nobis

Business Liaison

Seattle, WA

Eric Nobis is the Ex Officio Executive Director and co-founder of the Center for Sales and Marketing Strategy at the Foster School of Business. He is also the Managing Director of Marketing and Communications at the Foster School. In 25 years of working as a marketing professional, he’s been a PR pitch man, brand consultant who contributed to a book on brand strategy and launched a second office, creative copywriter and campaign manager, client services strategist, and team lead.

Eric’s combination of agency and research backgrounds has allowed him to work fluidly in and across various marketing disciplines. Among his diverse marketing accomplishments are pitch papers for $250M on behalf of Phillips Healthcare’s CEO (it was accepted); technical articles he wrote for Informationweek, Computerworld, and Network Computing; front-page placement of an article in The Wall Street Journal’s “Marketplace” section; launching a 2nd Seattle location of Parker LePla (acquired by Green Rubino), successful integrated marketing campaigns, and brand discovery and launch projects. He remains excited and curious about the way in which modern marketing is both disruptive to, and being disrupted by, changes in the consumer landscape.

Eric is a voracious reader, road cyclist, chess player, and traveler. He is a UW alum, with a bachelor’s degree in English/creative writing. He also played trumpet in the Husky Band, where he got to travel with the team to two Rose Bowl victories. Eric lives in Seattle with his wife, sons, and Islay (the female English lab who sides with his wife in all things).

Werner Reinartz

Chaired Professor of Retailing and Customer Management and Director of Center for Research in Retailing (IFH) at the University of Cologne

Cologne, Germany

Werner Reinartz is a Professor of Marketing at the University of Cologne, Germany. Furthermore, he is the director of Center for Research in Retailing (IFH), one of the largest applied research centers in the Faculty of Management and Economics. Furthermore, he is the speaker of the research initiative “Digital Transformation and Value Creation” at the Professor Reinartz holds a Ph.D. in Marketing from the University of Houston (1999).

His research interest and expertise focuses on the subjects of marketing strategy, retailing, customer management, digital transformation and channel management. In particular, he is interested in the questions of how firms can compete successfully in mature markets, marketing mix efficiency and effectiveness, and the successful management of lasting, profitable customer relationships. In terms of research productivity, he has been ranked among the top 2.5% of scholars in the world and he has been ranked as the #1 scholar outside the US in citations in the top marketing journals from 2003-2012.

His research work has been recognized with major academic awards, such as the AMA Doctoral Dissertation Competition, the Don Lehmann Award for the Best Dissertation-Based Research Paper, twice the MSI/Paul Root Award, finalist for the O’Dell Award, and the Sheth Foundation/Journal of Marketing Award for long-term contribution to the marketing discipline. He has published extensively in the top journals of the field. In addition, his research was presented in five different feature articles in Harvard Business Review. He is currently the co-editor of the International Journal of Research in Marketing (IJRM) and has been a longstanding member on the editorial boards for many top journals.

Professor Reinartz has worked with a large number of international companies such as for example IBM (Germany), Allianz (Germany), the Cora Group (France), GfK (Germany), ABN AMRO (Netherlands), METRO (Germany), Henkel (Germany), AKBANK (Turkey), Comdirect Bank (Germany), CGG (France), The Nielsen Company (Germany) and ThyssenKrupp (Germany). In addition, he has conducted extensively executive training programs for many Fortune500 and EuroStoxx50 companies. Prior to his academic career he has worked in international wholesale distribution and sales.

Jeffrey S. Roh, MD, MBA, MS

Chief Executive Officer & Board Chair, IntuitiveX

Seattle, WA

Dr. Jeffrey Roh is the Chief Executive Officer & Board Chair of IntuitiveX, a life science incubator created to help entrepreneurs and startups transform their ideas from concept to commercialization.

He is a board-certified, award-winning specialist in minimally invasive spine surgery and has published numerous research publications over the course of his twenty-year career. Dr. Roh is currently the Director of Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery at the Swedish Neuroscience Institute in Seattle and Chairman of Swedish Hospital’s Integrated Spine Program. He is actively involved in key strategic initiatives centered on excellence in clinical care, optimization of patient satisfaction, and value-based healthcare delivery. Dr. Roh is also an internationally recognized, sought after speaker on medical research and minimally invasive spine surgery innovation.

Dr. Roh serves on the advisory board of the Buerk Center for Entrepreneurship at the University of Washington’s Foster School of Business, as a mentor and advisor for the Jones + Foster Accelerator and UW’s technology transfer office, CoMotion, and as a judge for the annual Dempsey Startup Competition and the Holloman Health Innovation Challenge (HHIC). He has received numerous national Top Doctor awards and volunteers his time on a multitude of medical and institutional healthcare committees.

With his combined medical and business background Dr. Roh is a transformational advocate for greater equity in entrepreneurship opportunities for women & minorities and has dedicated himself to the advancement of underserved communities with access to quality healthcare.

He received his Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Washington, his Medical Degree from the Medical College of Wisconsin, his orthopedic surgery residency at Case Western Reserve University and his complex and minimally invasive spine surgery fellowship at Weill Cornell Medicine’s world-renowned Hospital for Special Surgery in NYC. Dr. Roh is a graduate of the Michael G. Foster School of Business MBA program at the University of Washington and completed a Masters of Science in Technology Management program at Columbia University in NYC.

Roland Rust

Distinguished University Professor, David Bruce Smith Chair in Marketing, and Executive Director of the Center for Excellence in Service & Center for Complexity in Business

College Park, MD

Roland T. Rust is Distinguished University Professor and David Bruce Smith Chair in Marketing at the Robert H. Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland, where he is founder and Executive Director of the Center for Excellence in Service. He is also Visiting Chair in Marketing Research at Erasmus University (Netherlands) and International Research Fellow of Oxford University’s Centre for Corporate Reputation (UK).  His lifetime achievement honors include the AMA Irwin McGraw-Hill Distinguished Marketing Educator Award, the EMAC Distinguished Marketing Scholar Award, Fellow of the INFORMS Society for Marketing Science, the Paul D. Converse Award, Fellow of the American Statistical Association, as well as the top career honors in service marketing, marketing research, marketing strategy, and advertising, and honorary doctorates in economics from the University of Neuchatel (Switzerland) and the Norwegian School of Economics.  He was one of the inaugural honorees in the American Marketing Association’s Marketing Legends video series, and one of the inaugural AMA Fellows.  He has won best article awards from five different journals, including four best article awards from the Journal of Marketing, as well as the Berry/AMA Book Award for the best book in marketing.  He served as Editor of the Journal of Marketing, founded the annual Frontiers in Service Conference, was founding Editor of the Journal of Service Research, and served as Editor of the International Journal of Research in Marketing (IJRM).  He has consulted with many leading companies worldwide, including such companies as American Airlines, AT&T, Comcast, Dow Chemical, DuPont, Eli Lilly, FedEx, Hershey, Hewlett-Packard, IBM, Lockheed Martin, Microsoft, NASA, NCR, Nortel, Procter & Gamble, Sears, Sony, Starwood, Tata, Unilever, and USAA.  A national class distance runner in his collegiate days, he has been inducted into the DePauw University Athletic Hall of Fame. He has coached one age group world champion and several age group national champions in track and triathlon. 

Paul Santarelli

Vice President of Sales, PitchBook

Seattle, WA

Paul Santarelli is the VP of sales at PitchBook, where he manages all aspects of sales for a team of 250+ professionals – and growing. This involves planning and delivering PitchBook’s sales quota, building and developing accounts managers and implementing prospect acquisition and customer growth campaigns. He also partners with marketing, product and other internal groups to drive test, measure, and execute tactical sales plans and develop product improvement ideas. Under his leadership, PitchBook has consistently exceeded sales goals and forecasts. Previously, Santarelli was the manager of Inside Sales at PitchBook, in charge of overseeing sales training and developing a sales pipeline. Before that, he was a director of business development at PitchBook, where he was responsible for the identification, qualification and onboarding of new PitchBook clients. Santarelli received an MBA from The A.B. Freeman School of Business at Tulane University where he specialized in Finance and International Business, and a Bachelor of Science from The University of Miami. He is a member of the Beta Gamma Sigma honors society.

Kevin Schemm

Vice President Finance & Strategy, Chief Financial Officer Boeing Commercial Airplanes

Kevin Schemm is vice president of Finance & Strategy and chief financial officer of Boeing Commercial Airplanes (BCA), a business unit of The Boeing Company. In this role, Schemm is responsible for the overall financial management of BCA, which reported revenues of $53 billion in 2013. In addition to the traditional Finance and Contracts organizations, Schemm also oversees strategic planning for BCA as he manages Business Development, Market, Services and Environmental Strategy and Strategy Integration. Previously, Schemm was vice president of North America and Leasing Sales for Boeing Commercial Airplanes, a position he assumed in January 2008. In this position, Schemm was responsible for the sale of all commercial airplanes and services to North American airline customers and leasing companies. Prior to that, Schemm served as vice president of Contracts and president of the Boeing Aircraft Holding Company. His responsibilities included leading and managing all commercial airplanes contract activities with customers, as well as participating in the development and implementation of strategies to increase customer satisfaction. Schemm joined Boeing in 1985 in Wichita as a systems engineer in Boeing’s Military Airplanes division. Shortly after moving to Commercial Airplanes, he was a regional director in Aircraft Contracts, managing business transactions and relationships with a significant number of airline customers in China and South Korea. Since then, he has held various assignments, including director of Customer Relationship Processes for Airplane Programs, director of Contracts for the 787 Program, managing director for Americas and Leasing Contracts, and director of Negotiation Support and Contracts Support for Airplane Programs. Schemm holds a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from Kansas State University and a master’s degree in business administration from the University of Washington. He is married and has three children. Schemm serves on the board of trustees at The Museum of Flight in Seattle and on the advisory board at the University of Washington’s Foster School of Business. He previously served on the Bellevue Arts Museum’s board of trustees. Sprague began his aviation career as a flight instructor and commercial pilot. He flew for Juneau, Alaska-based Wings of Alaska and also in the corporate flight department for Geico Insurance.

Brian Schwartz

Co-Founder SIZE & SIZE Ventures

Brian Schwartz (BA, 2006) is the Co-Founder of SIZE and SIZE Ventures. SIZE is an assembly of c-suite venture builders and re-imaginers that work with growth stage companies to increase their enterprise value. Areas of expertise include: Strategy, Marketing, Business Development, Human Resources, Finance & Operations, Executive Recruiting & Talent Mapping, Public Relations, Branding, Investor Relations, Supply Chain and Retail Distribution. SIZE Ventures invests in SIZE clients and takes control stakes in a select group of companies in need of a venture re-imagination where the SIZE team can be deployed on the company.
Before embarking on his current journey, Brian was Vice President, Global Partner Marketing for Expedia Group’s $5.4 billion hotel group where his teams included digital, brand, creative, industry relations, marketing operations, research and events.

Prior to Expedia Group, Brian spent six years in marketing and partnerships at DreamWorks Animation where he built a new division to $1.2 billion in retail sales / $60 million in earned revenue in one year, developed brand strategies for Shrek, Kung Fu Panda, Madagascar, How to Train Your Dragon and Trolls and executed over 100 omnichannel marketing campaigns to support DreamWorks’ entertainment properties.

Brian currently sits on three boards, is an advisor to over ten companies including the unicorn goPuff and is a scout investor for the venture capital fund Canaan Partners.

Brian graduated in 2009 from the London School of Economics with a Masters in Finance degree, and in 2006 Brian received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science, Economics and LAMP from Indiana University.

Shrihari (Hari) Sridhar, PhD

Joe Foster’ 56 Chair in Business Leadership and Professor of Marketing, Mays Business School

College Station, TX

Shrihari (Hari) Sridhar is Professor of Marketing, Joe Foster ’56 Chair in Business Leadership, Presidential Impact Fellow and Chancellor’s EDGES Fellow at Mays Business School, Texas A&M University.

He is an expert in the financial and social impact of marketing strategy, business-to-business marketing, and sales force strategy. He is the Editor-in-Chief designate for the Journal of Marketing and has served as Associate Editor at Journal of Marketing and the Journal of Marketing Research. He is currently serving as Research Director of the Reynolds and Reynolds Sales Leadership Institute at Texas A&M University.

His research has appeared in Journal of Marketing, Journal of Marketing Research, and Marketing Science, been a finalist for the Marketing Science Institute/H. Paul Root Award and Paul Green Award, and featured in Forbes, Harvard Business Review, National Public Radio (NPR), Reuters, and Sloan Management Review.

He received the Varadarajan Award for Early Career Contributions to Marketing Strategy Research in 2014 and was selected as a Marketing Science Institute Scholar in 2020. He is an award-winning teacher recognized by Poets and Quants and has co-authored two books titled Focus: How to Plan Strategy and Improve Execution to Achieve Growth, and Marketing Strategy: Based on First Principles and Data Analytics.

Becky Stein

Leader, Consumer Practice SPMB Executive Search

SPMB is an Executive Search firm that Forbes rated the #1 firm in San Francisco and Silicon Valley. Becky joined in 2015 to lead the consumer sector, which is 40% of the firm’s revenue. Her focus is recruiting CEO’s and C-Suite executives to a wide variety of public and investor-backed companies such as T-Mobile, lululemon, MGM Studios, Viking Cruises and Shutterfly. She works extensively with private equity firms including TPG, Apollo Capital Management, Bain Capital, KKR, and AEA Investors, on both pre and post-acquisition evaluation of talent strategy and org design for their portfolio companies. Previously, she was a Senior Client Partner at Korn Ferry where she co-founded the Digital Practice and was a member of the Consumer Sector Global Leadership Team. Prior to Korn Ferry Becky worked for Russell Reynolds Associates and was the Managing Partner of the America’s Consumer Sector. She holds a BBA in International Business & Finance from GWU, an MBA from New York University, and a Graduate Certificate from the Stockholm School of Economics. Outside of work, she is an endurance athlete who has completed multiple Ironmans, the famous Quad Dipsea and three 170 mile, multi-day self-supported Racing The Planet events in the Gobi Desert, Atacama Desert and Sri Lanka. In 2018, she completed the Zion 100k outside of Zion National Park and the 24-Hour Summer Solstice run in San Francisco. Her favorite race in 2019: the Burning Man 50 K. She is also on the Executive Committee of the Gun Safety Alliance.

Eric Trott

Director, Marketing & Brand Management Premera Blue Cross

Seattle, WA

Eric Trott is director of Marketing & Brand Management for Premera Blue Cross. He leads the Seattle-based health plan’s B2B and B2C marketing strategies across all six of the company’s lines of business. He also manages customer, producer and employer communications for the $9B company.

Prior to joining Premera, Trott led Safeco Insurance marketing for Liberty Mutual Insurance. His brand redesign, national advertising campaign, and sponsorships with Major League Baseball and the United States Olympic Committee helped the $7B company grow premiums by $1B in 5 years.

A 25-year veteran of marketing and public relations, Trott has won PRSA’s Silver Anvil, as well as several regional and industry awards for his marketing, advertising and communications. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Journalism from Northwestern University. He and his wife Julie have two boys and reside in Kenmore, Wash.

Mark White

President, content26

Seattle, WA

Mark White is the President and a founding member of content26, a Seattle-based agency that provides e-commerce content marketing and consulting for several of the world’s leading brands. He has overseen the growth of content26 from a small, independent subcontractor to one of the industry’s leading ecommerce content marketers. Content26’s clients include Unilever, Johnson & Johnson, Newell-Rubbermaid, Moen, and many other recognized brands across several verticals. Mark has expanded the company’s operations to include partnerships in Poland and Pakistan, and oversees the company’s business and production operations. He is also leading content26’s partnership initiatives, as the company expands its global marketing solutions. He has spoken widely at industry conferences. Mark received his B.A. from Williams College and Masters from the University of Washington. He is an avid reader, hiker and father. He lives in Shoreline, Washington with his wife, Tamara, and two elementary-school children, Lucas and Cassandra.

Gil Wootton

Seattle Location Managing Director, Accenture

Seattle, WA

Gil is the Seattle Office Managing Director responsible for the Pacific Northwest. Gil leads approximately 1,500 professionals and is responsible for managing the local business, expanding the company’s civic presence and fostering employee engagement. Gil is in his 25th year with Accenture. In addition to serving as head of the Seattle office, Gil is also client account lead for two of Accenture’s key clients in Seattle, and has responsibility for the Communications, Media and Technology (CMT) local market industry team. He has been on the Board of Directors and Executive Committee for the Washington Technology Industry Association for the past ten years. Gil has worked extensively in the Seattle local market over his career, engaging with companies including Expedia, Microsoft, Boeing, Univar, Isilon (EMC), T-Mobile, Paccar, and others. His primary experience is in broad-scale transformation including Sales & Marketing, Finance and Information Technology. He has notable awards and articles regarding Finance and Accounting Business Process Transformation and Outsourcing. Gil is also active in several charities involving food allergies, such as the Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Network. A graduate of the University of Washington (BS in Mechanical Engineering), Gil and his wife, Carolyn, have three children and are avid snow and water skiers.

Jonathan Zhang, PhD

Dean's Distinguished Research Fellow, Associate Professor of Marketing, Colorado State University

Fort Collins, CO

Jonathan Z. Zhang is on the marketing faculty at Colorado State University and is an affiliate faculty of CSU Data Science Research Institute.

In addition to his role as an marketing academic, Jon is the founding partner of the private equity group Z3 Capital, with investments in Asia, Europe, and the U.S., in the domains of commercial real-estate, e-commerce, hospitality, logistics, and luxury products. He currently serves as a board member and strategic advisor to senior management for several public and private companies.

He holds a Ph.D. in Quantitative Marketing and M.Phil. from Columbia University, and B.A and B.S. in Economics and Mathematical Statistics, Summa Cum Laude, from Rutgers Honors College, Rutgers University.

Jon's academic research stream leverages econometric and machine learning methods to investigate how consumer behaviors evolve in B2B and B2C domains, how organizations can use data analytics and marketing intervention to understand their customer portfolios, and how to best acquire, expand, and retain customers to foster customer loyalty and enhance company performance. Jon's substantive interests reside in the areas of pricing, omnichannel retail, digital transformation, and developing and executing market-pioneering strategies. His research has been published in Marketing Science, Management Science, Journal of Marketing, Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, Information Systems Research, California Management Review, Harvard Business Review, MIT Sloan Management Review, and others.

Jon has been highlighted by U.S. and international press such as Forbes, the Associated Press, Bloomberg, Bloomberg Businessweek, Businessweek China, NBC News, NPR's Marketplace, 850/94.1 KOA Denver, the Philadelphia Inquirer, Seattle Times, the Robb Report, Jetset Magazine, Irish National Public Radio (RTE), Retail Dive, International Channel Shanghai, Columbia Business School Insights, NZZ am Sonntag, among others.

Jon’s non-work passion is rural education and poverty alleviation in China where he serves on the board of several non-profits in this effort. He is also an avid long-time wine enthusiast and has been inducted into the Commanderie de Bordeaux (Régent, Seattle Chapter, 2014-2017) and Confrérie des Chevaliers du Tastevin.