Michelle is the Lending Associate for the Rural Nevada Development Corporation. She is a longtime resident of rural Nevada, making her home in Ely with her fiancé and three children. Her experience prior to alternative lending includes six years in the insurance industry. Michelle is currently working toward receiving her certification as an Economic Development Finance Professional through the National Development Council. When she is not working to lend money to the small business of rural Nevada, her three young children keep her busy with a multitude of community activities.
Doug Erwin is Vice President for Entrepreneurial Development for EDAWN, on board since June 2012. He is responsible for coordinating the entrepreneurial ecosystem of Northern Nevada, as well as collaborating between UNR, other higher education institutions, GOED’s Technology Commercialization Manager and private industry. Doug is a Serial Entrepreneur with extensive experience creating and running business ventures. As proof, Doug founded the following companies: Computer Parts Exchange (still in high school), Brio Technology (Kleiner Perkins backed), SeasonPass.com (first venture in new Incline Village residence), the IBA Group (a software development group) and Tahoe SUP (manufacturer of premium stand-up paddle boards). In 2002 he was approached to start a medical diagnostics business. With Doug as CEO, Pria Diagnostics was launched in 2002 to commercialize a point of care diagnostic technology developed at Stanford University. As CEO of Pria, Doug raised over $8M in angel and corporate financing, established a partnership with a $2B consumer products company and set up partnerships in Japan, Singapore and Malaysia. Doug was recognized for his fundraising strategy at Pria and awarded the Entrepreneur of the Year Award by the State of Nevada in 2005.
Debe Fennell, music industry veteran of more than 20 years, moved her skills in marketing and promotion to online and social media, including co-founding a crowdfunding platform. Ms. Fennell has coached many project owners on how to construct and manage marketing campaigns for crowdfunding projects. Her background has been as a manager of web-based affiliate marketing campaigns and internal marketing to existing clients, including content, brand management, leads list management, vendor oversight, sales page & sales funnel alignment, and affiliate relations. Ms. Fennell is a frequent blogger and guest expert for live events, radio and media interviews. Debe, a partner in LaunchMoxie.com, acts as Senior Affiliate Manager and Director of Crowdfunding. Residing in Reno, NV, Debe is a member of Entrepreneurship Nevada, NCET and Tech & Innovation Council for the City Council of Reno, and founder of www.CrowdfundCritical.com, an education entity to teach successful crowdfunding techniques. She is a judge and mentor to University of Nevada, college of business Sontag competition contestants, and the Governor’s Cup business plan competition. Debe sits on the Community Awareness Initiative committee for the Nevada Museum of Art and is an active member of the Rotary Club of Reno.
Alison Gaulden, APR, is a journalism professor, internship manager, PRSSA faculty advisor, PRSA chapter president (twice!), negotiator, business owner, political activist and entertaining speaker. She’s worked in reproductive rights, taught journalists and mentored students. She’s won two PRSA Sierra Nevada Chapter awards for professionalism and community service and three Association of Students University of Nevada Faculty Advisor of the year awards.
Ira Gostin, entrepreneur, marketer and communications strategist, is an influential and creative business development advisor who specializes in achieving measurable results. 120 West Strategic Communications combines his passions and entrepreneurial spirit while crafting strategies for clients. He recently directed investor relations and corporate communications for Tahoe Resources Inc., a $3.5 billion publicly traded company, where he was a founding executive and established the company’s brand as one of the top precious metals producers in the world. He coordinated Tahoe’s $505 million IPO in 2010 and directed communications and branding for mergers in 2015 and 2016. Tahoe was named a TopGun company in Canada for 2016.
Nina, a Reno native, has been with Great Basin FCU for over 12 years where she’s gained experience working in several departments and holding various positions prior to taking on the role as the business lending expert. Nina has vast knowledge and a great passion for working directly with members to find solutions that help them succeed and take their business to the next level. She’s a wife, mom, reader, board member for the Northern Nevada Credit Union Chapter, volunteers for Pinocchio’s Moms on the Run (a local charity), and recently was chosen as the credit union representative for all of Nevada to meet with lawmakers in Washington D.C. And most importantly, she is passionate about helping local business owners any way she can, day in and day out.
Jane Holman (MBA, APR) is Chief Strategist at M | Partners, a metrics-driven communications firm. Work includes brand assets creation, business communications, stakeholder engagement, earned media, and advocacy. Clients include professional services, artistic and culinary products, and technology companies. Jane also supports community efforts including Truckee Meadows Healthy Communities and Opportunity Alliance Nevada. Reach Jane at MJHolman@icloud.com.
Chris Howard is the Executive Director of the Ozmen Center for Entrepreneurship and is also a faculty member, overseeing Entrepreneurship academic curriculum in the College of Business at the University of Nevada, Reno. Over the past 37 years as a corporate principal or venture capital partner, Chris has bought, sold, and/or invested in 28 companies. He is the current CEO and Principal of NorthStar Investors, specializing in the provision of operational guidance and devising technical, financial and economic strategies. In addition to his focus on funding and growing start-up companies, Chris was formerly a CFO/COO of two publicly reporting companies, and a consultant with two national CPA firms. He holds a BA in Economics from Stanford University and a Master of Business Administration from Santa Clara University. He is a CMA (Certified in Management Accounting) and a CMC (Certified Management Consultant).
A native Southern Californian, Roger and his family moved to Nevada in 1987, living in Las Vegas from 1987-1990 and in Reno beginning 1991 to present. He and his wife Leslie have four adult children and ten grandchildren. Roger’s career began as a mortgage banker in Los Angeles, moving with First Interstate Mortgage Company in 1985 to open an office in the Raleigh, North Carolina area. In mid-1987 corporate changes brought about an inter-affiliate transfer from North Carolina to First Interstate Bank of Nevada in Las Vegas where Roger was a commercial real estate relationship officer and team leader. During that time in Las Vegas he underwrote and managed financing for Del Webb’s Sun City Summerlin, Spanish Trail Golf Course Community, Lewis Homes, and others. With bank mergers and changes in the banking community, Roger has managed real estate and construction lending for several banks in northern Nevada since 1995, the largest construction loan being $45million for a condominium project. He joined Nevada State Development Corporation in October 2013 as Business Development Officer because of his many contacts with commercial real estate brokers and bankers in the area.
Leonard Lafrance has over 30 years of experience in Information Technology, having started his career with IBM and NCR, after which he co-founded and served as Executive Vice President of Century Analysis, Inc., (CAI) an enterprise software manufacturer that provided application integration tools and solutions to commercial, industrial, and healthcare enterprises from 1976 until its sale to New Era of Networks in 1998. Leonard is currently involved in a variety of activities, some of which include the management of family investments; participation in Sierra Angels (angel investment group based in Incline Village, NV) and The Batchery (incubator-accelerator in Berkeley, CA); mentoring of entrepreneurs in northern NV in conjunction with SCORE (Service Corps of Retired Executives) and NSBDC (Nevada Small Business Development Corp.); and board positions at Jopari Solutions, Desert Research Corporation, Lomics, Inc., DRI Foundation, and EPI (Educational Pathways International), a family foundation.
Ms. McIntosh advises established and emerging entities on general corporate, transactional, and regulatory matters. Her experience is strongly focused on assisting clients in regulated industries including health care, insurance, and finance. Ms. McIntosh approaches clients’ problems from a pragmatic perspective, providing clients with practical legal solutions that make sense in the context of day‐to‐day business operations and strategic objectives. Ms. McIntosh advises businesses at all stages of the corporate lifecycle, from formational matters like entity selection, organizational document preparation and licensure, to the sale or purchase of equity interests. She also guides companies through mergers and acquisitions, vendor and workforce contracting, business succession, and dissolution. In her health law practice, Ms. McIntosh counsels physicians, hospitals, long-term care facilities, insurers, and other healthcare providers through administrative hearings before state and federal agencies, licensing matters, the certificate of need process, fraud and abuse investigations, credentialing, and medical staff issues. She also works with clients to structure relationships between providers in compliance with state and federal laws and regulations, including the Stark Law and Anti-Kickback Statute. Ms. McIntosh is Certified in Healthcare Compliance (CHC) through the Compliance Certification Board. Her compliance activities include assisting clients with matters related to HIPAA, HITECH, and other state laws and regulations. She also assists clients with compliance auditing activities and the development and implementation of corporate compliance plans. Ms. McIntosh is admitted to practice in Nevada.
A true social and digital media junkie Amanda brings more than four years of experience in digital marketing to the Bauserman Group. At the agency she is responsible for researching new digital platforms and bringing them to the team in order for Bauserman Group to stay on top of all new organic and paid digital mediums, including social media. She also is responsible for bringing in new business to the Bauserman Group and managing Bauserman’s social media platforms. Before joining the Bauserman Group in June of 2015 she worked for Gannett, a national media company, on their digital sales team, G/O Digital. She also has experience in marketing strategy and segmentation and data analysis after working for USAA as an intern two summers while in college. Amanda is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin, Whitewater where she earned a bachelor’s degree in business. Amanda is absolutely addicted to all things social media and you can follow her on Instagram @amandagmclernon to learn more about her social media style.
Casey Prostinak joined SVN in the summer of 2015 as an associate advisor specializing in industrial properties. Casey earned his dual Bachelor of Science degree in Finance and Economics from the University of Nevada. Prior to joining SVN, Casey worked with various startup companies throughout college with a focus on early stage business development. His background in finance and business growth has translated into a focus on investment sales of industrial and office properties today. As a Reno/Tahoe native, Casey spends most of his free time snowboarding, skiing, mountain biking, wakeboarding, cliff jumping and surfing. He knows the unique attributes of living and working in the vast northern Nevada market we call home.
As the owner of Jax Marketing and Vice President of Public Relations for the Estipona Group, she gets to handle marketing, media and community relations for clients ranging from real estate and governmental agencies to healthcare and higher education providers. A graduate of the University of Nevada, Jackie has worked in all facets of communications from running two advertising agencies to publishing two of the Northern Nevada region’s premiere publications, RLife and Family Pulse. In addition to her magazine work, she has been published in Chicken Soup for the Soul and 365 Scary Stories, a Barnes & Noble anthology. While her teams have won many marketing awards from organizations as varied as the American Advertising Federation to the Western Fairs & Exposition Organization, Jackie has always been focused on results. Working with clients from a national dental chain to a regional grocery store chain and one of our area’s most successful real estate agencies, she has crafted creative solutions designed to increase profits and goodwill. Jackie is an occasional adjunct professor at the Reynolds School of Journalism at the University of Nevada, Reno, teaching college students the intricacies of writing and getting published. She earned her accreditation in public relations (APR) in 2016 and serves on the board of directors for the Public Relations Society of America Sierra Nevada Chapter. She has also served on the national board of the American Advertising Federation, as well as numerous local/regional non-profit and professional organizations, including the Unnamed Writers’ Group and Nevada Recycling Coalition.
Robb Selander has extensive experience working with both large corporations and start-up companies. Originally from the United States, he spent 14 years in the Netherlands, where he worked during the start-up phase for Vodafone, British Telecom and France Telecom/Orange during their introduction into the Dutch market. Afterwards, Robb started his own company developing and facilitating leadership, teambuilding, coaching and skills development workshops for Cisco Systems and Shell Oil, which were delivered in the Netherlands, China, Singapore and the United States. Robb also worked with start-up companies located in Silicon Valley and the Netherlands. Afterwards, he accepted a position at Wunderman, one of the first and leading direct marketing companies in the world handling the Microsoft account, which involved the below-the-line strategies and campaigns for Microsoft Dynamics and the launch of Windows Vista. His success in the Netherlands led his company to relocate him to India as one of the key members heading up the advertising team for Microsoft, where he oversaw Windows Mobile, Microsoft Office and anti-piracy initiatives. Robb then went to work with MRM Worldwide as National Director of Planning and Strategy where he developed customer engagement strategies for Nestle, Johnson and Johnson, Barclay’s Bank and more. During his time in India, he also helped start a small business by the name of UberBrains, a group of professionals that collaborate on marketing and customer engagement strategies for businesses in India. Robb is still a member of the team. 2010, while on sabbatical in Tanzania, Robb was involved in starting a marketing and brand strategy company in Dar es Salaam that today provide guidance, training and strategic advice to local businesses. Since August 2014, Robb has been working at Nevada Business Opportunity Fund and the Nevada Women’s Business Center where he works with new and existing small businesses to help them acquire the funding they need. He also advises aspiring and existing small business owners in all areas of business, ranging from idea viability to creating business plans, marketing plans, financial projections and leadership development. Robb is also a certified John Maxwell trainer, coach and speaker.