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DIRECTORS

  Dianne Gubin

Sometimes in the business world you meet a "Natural", a business person that loves it, that loves what they're doing.   That's Dianne Gubin.   With energy in abundance, enthusiasm and huge smile, Dianne is a natural connector, a networker extraordinaire.  

 

Dianne’s career includes over 20 years of B2B sales and account management with Fortune 500 corporations, government agencies, and fast-growth companies.   Her work includes selling staffing and consulting services across industries.  

 

Currently, Dianne works with Amplify Professional Services providing retained, direct hire and staff augmentation services for IT related projects.   Prior to this, Dianne was responsible for business development at a billion dollar staffing agency, as well as a project management company.  Earlier, she was the founder and president of Tech Exec Partners, an IT consulting services firm.

 

Dianne is a frequent speaker for professional organizations, as well as a media guest expert and TV show host.  Her specialties include issues related to career, business, and women entrepreneurship.

 

An avid blogger and consummate networker, Dianne’s speaking programs for Pens-to-Pumps, Lets Keep America Working, and Job Hunting Game Strategies, along with her Spiral Up Coaching program have helped many with their professional development and entrepreneurial pursuits.  Dianne volunteers as Director of Amplify Roundtables, invitation only executive networking events for peer professionals from Fortune 1000 and fast growth companies.  She is the former founder and president of Women in Technology International, LA Chapter (WITI-LA).  

 

Dianne’s latest project is a television pilot, “So What’s It Take To Work There” which features online retailer Zappos.  In addition to staffing, she is currently creating reality shows in the career space. 

 

Dianne lives with her family and in the Los Angeles area where she enjoys hiking, the beaches and oh yes, more networking.





JENNIFER DEEGE


Jennifer Deege has been in sales operations, management and business development for over 15 years.  Jennie has extensive experience consulting clients building teams, and in devising sales, marketing and development strategies focused on rapid growth in both start up and large company environments.


Prior to taking her collective experience into the family office and consulting realm, Jennifer began her career in recruitment and executive search in the IT arena.  Her love of working with executive management teams in creating HR strategies, and project management advisement, as well as providing clients with the vital acquisition of human capital. 

 

Earlier, Jennie co-founded Cardagin, a technology start-up and leader in mobile loyalty marketing. Cardagin has been branded a market leader by The Financial Times, Inc. Magazine, and CNET, and named a finalist for Forbes’ “America’s Most Promising Companies.” 

Jennie grew up in the Buffalo area and is a graduate of Nazareth College of Rochester, in Rochester, NY.

Specialties: Human Capital, Mobile Solutions, Operations, Management, Technology, Start-up




ADVISORY BOARD



  Barbara Bickham


Barbara Bickham, CTO with extensive experience in Technology, Monetization, Digital/Mobile and Entrepreneurship. Her current areas of expertise are in Internet of Things, Augmented Reality and Artificial Intelligence.


Barbara is currently the CTO of Wran.gl, a member of the CTO Forum, and a team member for Hyperloop Transportation Technologies (HTT). She was the Co-Founder and CTO for Brainitch, a location aware chat platform for emergency response. Before Brainitch, Ms. Bickham was the Director of Engineering for Flexeye where she architected, designed and coded the 2014 Gartner Cool Vendor Award Winning REST API for their IoT Platform eyehubiot.com. Ms. Bickham founded TechGenii, Inc., a digital strategy company and Wilderforex.com, a Forex Software company. Ms. Bickham has worked for Thinque Systems, RAND, Network Associates, St. Jude Medical, Xerox, and US. Robotics.


Ms. Bickham also has 4+ years experience preparing and evaluating companies for private equity and venture capital financing. She founded an investment association connecting Southern California businesses with venture funding. Success includes raising $15MM funding for Rififi, a film, game and digital studio. She has spoken worldwide on venture capital, business strategy, fund-raising trends, digital strategy, IoT and Big Data.  She is currently writing a book on Monetizing Advanced Technologies.


She is on the Advisory Board of the MIND Institute and a Mentor for Springboard Enterprises. She is a graduate of the New Entrepreneur’s Program from the University of Chicago, has a Masters Degree in Computer Science from West Coast University and a Bachelor of Arts in Computer Science from the University of California, Berkeley.




  Michelle Elkins

Michelle is the Director of Enterprise Shares Services owning the Asset Management Portfolio, a shared services organization within Honeywell International.  In this role she provides overall leadership for implementation of global information technology (IT) projects.  Joining Honeywell in 1997, Michelle has held various IT positions with increasing responsibility in several Honeywell business units where she was responsible for operation of IT systems, new technology, infrastructure, application development, and support.


Michelle earned her degree in Business Management from Pepperdine University, Malibu, California.  She is ITIL and Greenbelt certified.


In addition to her work with Honeywell, Michelle sits on several boards, including California State University, Los Angeles – IT Advisory Board, Network of Women in Technology and Southern California Society of Information Management.





 

   Roberta Jacobs
    Founding CEO, and Chief Operating Officer, BetterWorks
    Cobaltcard from American Express and GreenWare Technologies



Founding CEO of Cobaltcard from American Express and GreenWare Technologies, Roberta Jacobs is a strategic business leader and C-suite executive who helped build some of world's most successful consumer brands including Alf, Cabbage Patch, Crayola, Hot Wheels, Mission Impossible, Popples, Rainbow Brite, Rugrats, Sega, Spongebob, and Star Trek.


Over the past 10 years, Roberta has been a successful consultant and interim executive writing business, strategic and turnaround plans for American Express, Craigslist, Hewlett Packard and First Data Corporation among others. While residing in the Bay Area she wrote business and fund raising documents for seven start-up companies two of which she founded. Roberta was the Founding CEO of Cobaltcard from American Express and GreenWare Technologies. She also taught the class “Entrepreneurship” at the University of California at Berkeley, Haas School of Business MBA Program. Most recently she was instrumental in the sale of two companies, a start-up to First Data Corporation and a re-start to Forstmann Little. Roberta has been on several boards including Craigslist Foundation. Roberta is currently writing business plans for and working with start-ups in Los Angeles, CA.




  Karina Klever


Ms. Karina Klever brings over 25 years of IT experience to Amplify. Ms. Klever’s specialty is identifying operational gaps in infrastructure organizations, and developing mitigating strategies to mature efficiencies not only in IT groups, but cross-departmentally. Ms. Klever guides organizations through necessary change and structures controls which provide growth opportunities.

Ms. Klever started her technology career as a computer operator/programmer, which has engrained an appreciation for technology capabilities and an understanding of how technology enables business objectives.  This experience was broadened when Ms. Klever moved onto project management where she deployed many infrastructure solutions. While project managing, Ms. Klever witnessed gaps outside of the project management scope that if addressed, would provide greater continuity for operations amongst departments – Which is how the Program Management portion of Ms. Klever’s career started.

Ms. Klever integrates common-sense controls and processes which identify and address operational deficiencies, while aligning with maturity objectives. Companies that have benefitted from Ms. Klever’s “change agent” approach were in various industries such as banking, mortgage, eComm, retail, and biotech. Ms. Klever’s experience with processes reengineering addresses core technology competencies, workload measurement/streamlining, financial controls, audit best-practices and establishing continual improvement. Ms. Klever’s understanding of Project Management methodologies either enhance established methodology at companies, or result in right-sized recommendations for companies that do not have methodologies in place.


Ms. Klever lives in Thousand Oaks, CA and has a B.S., in Management and an AA in Computer Programming.




Michele Lando

In 1994, Michele Lando co-founded Skilset Communications with the purpose of helping companies such as Akamai Technologies, Bosley Medical, Cisco Systems, Cedars-Sinai, Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles, Forest Lawn, Kaiser Permanente, Metropolitan Water District, National Water and Power, Prudential, Wells Fargo and X-drive, to name a few, reach their full potential in developing their brand, communicating integrated messages, and effectively creating competitive advantage in the marketplace. 

 

Michele serves as a lead strategist on all accounts and looks for ways to enhance the perception of her clients in the marketplace, ways to align internal and external philosophies and messages to create strength in the brand through congruency and always looks at the full picture – meaning beyond marketing to sales revenue and how all efforts lead to a measurable return on the client’s investment.

 

Michele believes that treating clients as business partners brings a level of accountability and joy to the working relationship that is essential to creating the best outcomes for our clients.

 

Prior to launching Skilset Communications Inc., Michele was a highly successful sales strategist (among the top 2% of female earners nationally before age 28).  She developed and delivered a global marketing training program to thousands of worldwide sales associates for a fortune 500 firm. She has been and continues to be a well-received public speaker.

 

Recognizing a gap between sales implementation and marketing efforts, Michele used her sales and presentation knowledge to develop a training division at Skilset Communications. The training is customized to each client and takes various forms to ensure marketing expenditures are executed through the sales process to yield a return on investments.

 

Michele is a standing board advisor of the National Museum of Women’s History, as well as an active board member of Amplify Roundtable and Big Thinking Women. She grew up in LA, was educated at UCLA and continues to reside in Los Angeles today with her husband of 26 years.  They own what they fondly refer to as the original money pit, a vintage 1926 Spanish Revival home.  When they are REALLY relaxing they are travelling – favoring Portugal!




 

   Nikki HM Jackson

   Entrepreneur, Algorithmic Search Engine Optimization Expert, Inventor


 Founder of Goldranking Website Marketing Agency, the leading Orange County SEO eCommerce and lead generating firm, Nikki HM Jackson, entrepreneur, has been involved with a wide variety of clients and projects from international charities to academic institutions to public companies notably Kiwanis International, Saddleback College, UC Irvine Extension, New Century Mortgage, The Brown Shoe Corporation and Cedars Sinai Hospital~Dept. of Neurology.

Jackson's experience as a technology expert, entrepreneur, and business owner led her to create and trademark a software technology system that helps businesses decrease their acquisition costs by at least 80% and increase their online advertising return on investment (ROI) by 60%.

Exceptionally hard working, Ms. Jackson carved out successes for her web marketing company increasing yearly sales and profits consistently since 1999. She has been certified through Google's Adwords Professional program and is certified through Microsoft's adExcellence programs.

Jackson has helped hundreds of Orange County business owners and executives by authoring and conducting monthly web marketing training classes and seminars for the Irvine Chamber of Commerce's 1,000+ company membership.

Nikki has been a guest speaker to numerous organizations including 200 businesswomen at WomenSage Re-Invent Yourself! founded by Jane Glenn Haas, NAWB (National Association Of Women Business Owners), and the Association Of Internet Professionals.

She has been interviewed on Business Talk Radio with Dianne Gubin and by Small Business Journalist Jan Norman of the Orange County Register.

In 2012 Ms. Jackson was honored as an Orange County Business Journal "Women In Business" Awards Nominee and an Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of The Year Nominee.

Nikki has served on the Board of Directors for numerous non-profit organizations including as Executive Vice President for the Forum For Women Entrepreneurs representing the Los Angeles and Orange County areas and as Corporate Relations Director for the University of California Irvine Womens Opportunities Center where she additionally taught quarterly classes on "Starting and Marketing A Successful Website Business". She has also served on the Board of Advisors for the Orange Coast College Business Department, Costa Mesa California.

In 2007 Nikki was honored as an Irvine Chamber of Commerce Member Of The Year Nominee as well as serving the Chamber's constituency by volunteering on the Marketing Committee, Seminar Committee, and Technology Committee simultaneously.

In 2003 Nikki served as Public Relations Director on the Board of Directors of the World Organization of Webmasters, an organization for web professionals offering education, mentorship, online training, technical support, employment information, and Internet legal guidance.



Barbara Oberman


Barbara C. Oberman-Lippe brings over 25 years of experience to her clients.   As the founding member of Barbara C. Oberman Insurance Services, Inc.  Barbara has a vast background on the brokerage/consulting side, and the insurance carrier side.  Barbara has worked with regional and national consulting firms in Southern California and was responsible for establishing the benefits division for a large regional insurance brokerage to develop that area for the firm.  Prior to that, she started the group insurance division for Western Dental Plan, growing the business significantly.  Her expertise enables her to work with clients of all sizes to find unique, creative solutions. 


Barbara has published numerous articles on employee benefits topics including cost saving tips, employee wellness, and the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.

She has been a speaker on employee benefit topics at the USC and UCLA Management Schools and was interviewed by NPR host Pat Morrison as well as by San Fernando Valley Business Journal on subjects relevant to the employee benefits industry.   Since the passage of the Affordable Care Act she has been a speaker on the health care reform for the CalCPA Society groups throughout Los Angeles, and other organizations, including the State Bar of California, San Fernando Valley Bar Association, 2014 CalCPA Tax Update and Planning Conference, and various local California CPA Society and community groups.


Barbara lives in Woodland Hills with her husband, Greg Lippe, and their two whippets, Logan and Gracie.  Barbara is passionate about foreign third-world travel. 

 




  George Wu

George Wu is a Chief Technology Officer (CTO) and software architect who specializes in e-commerce, start-ups and turnarounds.   His 25+ year background in IT includes work with CAbi, Oversee.net, SAGE Software, LeisureLink and AOL.  George launched first products and global distribution gateways for Expedia, Travelocity, and Hotels.com.  Additionally, he has managed dozens of successful new product launches and product updates for fast growth companies.  George earned a Bachelor’s degree in Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University.



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