Speakers

Mais Abousy
Attorney-Advisor, International Commercial Law Development Program - U.S. Department of Commerce, Office of the General Counsel

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Denise Acquaye
- FASTSIGNS International, Inc.

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George Adriopoulos
CEO - Launchpad Five One Six

George Andriopoulos is the award-winning founder and CEO of Launchpad Five One Six, a management consulting firm providing organizations with tools and resources to innovate and thrive. A creative disruptor and corporate turnaround artist, George inspires change for businesses and individuals stuck in the mindset of defining themselves by their mistakes. As self-proclaimed “Chief Inspiration ...

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Kay Marie Ainsley
Managing Director - MSA Worldwide

Kay Marie Ainsley is a Managing Director of MSA Worldwide, a domestic and international franchise advisory firm. She has over 20 years of experience in franchising for major franchise systems or as a strategic advisor to companies within the retail, restaurant, services, manufacturing, and business to business industries. Kay provides franchise feasibility assessment and franchise program devel ...

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Chidinma Akaniro
- U.S. Commercial Service

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Aggie Batista
Rockaway Park, NY Franchisee - Dream Vacations

Aggie Batista of Rockaway Park, NY has owned her Dream Vacations travel agency franchise since 2011 and is a first-generation American born to immigrant parents who are from Colombia and Dominican Republic. Aggie is very passionate about the influence her parents had on her becoming an entrepreneur. Her parents instilled in her four key traits that she uses to operate her franchise and live her li ...

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Richard Bayer
Partner - Einbinder & Dunn, LLP

Richard Bayer is a partner with Einbinder & Dunn LLP and leads the firm’s franchise regulatory practice. Mr. Bayer represents franchisors during all stages of development, including counseling emerging franchisors through all aspects of developing a franchise program, guiding franchisors through regulatory compliance matters and assisting mature franchisors with various stages of growth, inc ...

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Steve Beagelman, CFE
CEO and Founder - SMB Franchise Advisors

Steve Beagelman is a franchise industry veteran of more than 25 years who held positions ranging from entrepreneur to senior level executive, giving him a unique insight and perspective in growing, operating, and building brands. In 2009, Steve established SMB Franchise Advisors, a consulting company specializing in advising franchise start-ups and existing franchise concepts of ways to drive busi ...

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Eli Bensignor
Associate - Gray Plant Mooty

Eli Bensignor dedicates his practice to franchise, distribution, and licensing matters. He counsels emerging and seasoned franchisors across the U.S. on day-to-day matters, including analyzing and drafting agreements and commercial contracts, filing registrations, and advising on regulatory compliance. Eli has experience with commercial litigation matters, protecting his clients’ rights by e ...

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Daniel A. Blumenthal
Associate - Seyfarth Shaw LLP

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Paul Bosley
Managing Member - Business Finance Depot

Paul Bosley is known for his expertise in financing for franchises and especially in the health club industry. Paul has partnered with several national franchises to assist new franchise partners acquire the capital they need to launch their new businesses. He is also keen on helping existing business owners find the finances to expand their current business. He is a regular speaker and writer ...

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Randy Busse
Author, Coach and Founder - Workforce Development Group, Inc.

Randi Busse, President of Workforce Development Group, has been helping employees to delight customers for more than 25 years. Her programs help employees to “think like an owner, not a renter,” yielding rave reviews from her clients, because the culture of their organizations change and their customers rave about them. She’s co-author of the book, “Turning Rants Into Raves: Turn Your Custom ...

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Dale E. Cantone
Assistant Attorney General - Franchise Unit Chief - Maryland Attorney General’s Office

Dale Cantone is an Assistant Attorney General for the State of Maryland and the Deputy Securities Commissioner for the Maryland Securities Division. Dale is the chief of the franchise and business opportunity unit of the Maryland Securities Division. In addition, Dale serves as Chair of the Franchise and Business Opportunity Committee/Project Group of the North American Securities Administrators ...

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Thomas Chen
- Crystal Window & Door Systems, Ltd.

Thomas Chen, the founder of Crystal Windows that started from a small workshop to a manufacture in New York. It ranked among largest New York area minority firms in the Crain’s list for the past 20 years, since 1998. Crain’s New York Business ranked Crystal Windows 12th on its annual list of the New York area’s largest minority-owned companies 2017. ...

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Amy Cheng
Partner - Cheng Cohen

Amy concentrates her practice in domestic and international commercial transactions, general corporate, and franchise, licensing and distribution law. She represents franchisors on the structuring and operation of their franchise programs through all phases of development. She also represents non-U.S. based franchisors expanding into the U.S. market. Amy has extensive experience in struct ...

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Shery Christopher
Managing Director - Shery Christopher Consulting

Since 1986, Shery has provided business franchise consulting and coaching in new business and franchise development including franchise expansion and support. With extensive experience in international expansion and development for US franchise brands expanding internationally and international brands expanding into the US and other countries through in-depth research and market studies and franch ...

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Cody Crail
- C Squared Social

Cody Crail is the VP of Sales at C Squared Social, a digital marketing agency based in Carlsbad, CA that specializes in franchise development and HR recruiting. During his five years with C Squared Social the company has grown from 6 to 53 employees and currently has over 300 active clients. Cody is also a multi-unit franchisee of Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory and Aspen Leaf Frozen Yogurt ...

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Mackenzie Dimitri
Litigation Associate - Einbinder & Dunn, LLP

Mackenzie L. Dimitri is a litigation associate at Einbinder & Dunn, LLP, with experience representing franchisor and franchisee clients in trials and other dispute resolution forums throughout the country. In addition to her courtroom experience, she also drafts and negotiates commercial contracts, including franchise disclosure documents, and coordinates corporate organizational matters. M ...

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Charles Dobyns, CFE
CEO - Franchise Dynamics

Charles Dobyns is the President and Chief Development Officer of Franchise Dynamics, a full-service franchise sales outsourcing firm. With company and affiliate offices in Chicago, Scottsdale, Arizona and Springfield, Missouri, Franchise Dynamics currently represents a number of emerging to large-sized franchisors in a wide variety of categories throughout the United States and worldwide. He is a ...

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Ritwik Donde
Senior Analyst - FRANdata

A walking franchising “think tank”, Ritwik’s long history of franchise analysis makes him an invaluable source of industry insight and franchise model mechanics. Ritwik lends his expertise and leads important projects such as “Best Practices in International Franchises”, “Setting up a Franchise lending portfolio”, and “Assessment of the Buffet Model of Food Delivery in QSRs” to name a few. ...

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Tom DuFore
CEO - Big Sky Franchise Team

Tom DuFore is the CEO of Big Sky Franchise Team, where he is responsible for company strategy and to support and consult with Big Sky Franchise Team’s Clients. Tom has consulted with and advised hundreds of businesses ranging from the largest companies in the world to start-ups. Prior to starting Big Sky Franchise Team, Tom spent 10 years as a Franchise Consultant working for multiple consul ...

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William Edwards, CFE
CEO and Founder - Edwards Global Services, Inc.

An executive with over 44 years of international operations, development, executive and entrepreneurial experience, Mr. Edwards has lived in seven countries and directed projects in 68 countries.

Founded in 2001, EGS currently has people on the ground in 32 countries. In May 2015, EGS received the ‘E Star’ Award, the highest export award given by the U.S. President for making signif ...

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Barry Falcon
Senior Advisor - iFranchise Group

As iFranchise Group’s Senior Franchise Advisor in Atlanta, Mr. Falcon’s professional career spans more than 40 years across a range of industries and functions, including communications technology, operational and manufacturing consulting, marketing, project management, and business development. Mr. Falcon has over 15 years of direct experience in franchising, both as a franchisee and as an execut ...

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Marisa Faunce
Partner - Plave Koch PLC

Marisa Faunce is a partner with the franchise law firm of Plave Koch PLC in Reston, Virginia. Marisa counsels franchisors, licensors, and manufacturers on transactional, regulatory and intellectual property issues involved in developing and growing franchise programs. She also counsels franchisors regarding all aspects of the franchise relationship, including operational compliance, system standa ...

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Lane Fisher
Esquire - Fisher Zucker LLC

In private practice since 1989, Lane currently represents more than 75 franchise brands in business transactions and complex franchise litigation. Lane is admitted to practice in Pennsylvania and New Jersey and serves on the franchise law committee of the New Jersey State Bar Association, the Philadelphia Bar Association and the American Bar Association's forum committee on franchising. In additi ...

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Brad Fishman
CEO - Fishman Public Relations

As one of the most well-connected individuals in the franchise industry, Brad has spent more than 20 years helping franchise systems develop franchisee lead generation and consumer awareness campaigns that help them achieve their desired growth.

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Zack Fishman
- FranFunnel

Zack Fishman is a life-long franchise geek who has been involved in the space since he was could walk (literally). Ranging from franchise development, digital marketing to public relations, Zack has devoted his life/his young professional career to understanding the ins and outs of the space. Currently, Zack is the Sales Director for FranFunnel, an initial communication tool that helps franc ...

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Rob Fishman
- Sandler Training

Partner and Owner, Sandler Training, Hauppauge, New York, USA Drawing on over 35 years of business ownership, Rob Fishman is a partner and owner of Sandler Training of Hauppauge, a Long Island based company that focuses on executive leadership, sales management and the sales process. He has coached, trained, and mentored sales and sales management teams, was well as executive leadership on t ...

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Jan Gilbert
Principal - Gray Plant Mooty

Jan Gilbert has worked with both start-up and developed franchisors and franchisees for more than 25 years and counsels them on all aspects of domestic and international franchising. Jan has a wide variety of experience working with franchising activities and franchise relationship matters, including: structuring franchise programs, counseling on federal and state regulatory issues (e.g., tra ...

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Evan Goldman
Partner - A.Y. Strauss LLC

Evan M. Goldman is Partnerl in the Roseland, NJ office of AY Strauss. Mr. Goldman has represented both franchisees and franchisors throughout the United States. In his practice, Mr. Goldman has litigated extensively in state and federal courts, as well as before the American Arbitration Association ('AAA'). Mr. Goldman has a breadth of experience representing franchisor and franchisee clients i ...

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Beth Granger
President - Beth Granger Consulting

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Barbara Grumet
- SCORE Mentor

Barbara Grumet was previously Dean, School of Professional Studies, at the New York City College of Technology, CUNY. Prior to that she was the CEO of a nonprofit headquartered in New York City. She has served in a variety of academic leadership positions, and as a Board of Directors Chair and board member in several nonprofit organizations. She is experienced in health and human services ...

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Janet Harris, CFE
Senior Franchise Development Specialist - Dream Vacations

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Jam Hashmi
ClickTecs - ClickTecs

An entrepreneur with an extensive background in franchising with specialities in Franchise Development and Franchise Marketing. Jam is the CEO and founder of ClickTecs, a Digital Marketing agency as well as the co-founder of FranchiseSoft, a SaaS based Franchise Management Software company

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John P. Hayes, PhD
Titus Franchise Chair - HowToBuyAFranchise.com

Dr. John Hayes is the Titus Chair for Franchise Leadership at Palm Beach Atlantic University. He teaches students and professionals about franchising. He is one of the few people to have been a franchisor, a franchisee, and an advisor to franchise companies internationally. He speaks at franchise conferences around the globe.

Dr. Hayes has worked in the franchise community since 1979 a ...

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Barry Heller
Partner - DLA Piper US LLP

For over 30 years, Barry's practice has consisted almost exclusively of representing clients in franchise and distribution disputes throughout the country, both in litigation, arbitration and mediation.

Much of Barry's practice has focused on franchise termination matters, as well as on more complex franchise cases involving issues affecting the entire franchise system. He has handled c ...

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Theresa Huszka, CFE
Senior Consultant - MSA Worldwide

Theresa’s has over 18 years of experience in franchising and her consultancy is devoted to assisting companies design and develop their franchised business model. MSA Worldwide’s services include feasibility assessments, creation of training programs and operations manuals, design and development of franchise sales programs including marketing, advertising, and franchise sales process systems and ...

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Patrick Hyland
Vice President of Franchise Development - The Ground Guys

Since 2010 Pat Hyland has served as a Franchise Developer and Vice President of Franchise Development for The Grounds Guys®. Prior to joining the Grounds Guys and Rainbow International Restoration teams, Pat was the Senior Vice President of Rotobrush International where he was instrumental in transforming a family business into a professional enterprise. During his 14 year tenure, it was hi ...

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Michael Iannuzzi
- Citrin Cooperman

Michael Iannuzzi is a partner and co-leader of the firms franchise practice providing audit and accounting, business consulting and advisory, and tax planning services to a wide spectrum of clients within the franchise community. He works with franchisors and multi-unit franchisees in a variety of industries, including, but not limited to, fitness and athletic centers, children entertainment ...

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Mukarram Ismail
Engagement Coach - HalalFranchise.com

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Eric Johnson, CFE
Global Team Leader - Franchising - U.S. Commercial Service, Atlanta

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Matthew Jonas
President - TopFire Media

Matthew Jonas is president and co-founder of TopFire Media. As TopFire Media’s brand steward, he defines high-impact digital PR and marketing strategies for an impressive cache of consumer and franchise-based clientele. A seasoned marketer and highly respected franchising expert, Matthew has built a nearly 20-year career dedicated to delivering outcomes and results through an integrated and strate ...

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Hossein Kasmai
- Franchise Creator

Hossein, as an electrical engineer was an executive at Motorola for many years, leading a team of engineers in developing high tech pagers and later mobile phones. He left Motorola in late 90's and started a high tech communication company named Infopage, providing wireless products used for transmitting messages to LED signs and TV sets in restaurants, hotels and airports. His company ...

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Marty Katz
- 360 Connects

An experienced salesman and marketer, Marty has been developed brands and brand strategies for some of the world’s largest companies, across industries and for existing and new companies, products and services. He has a deep understanding of branding and how a company’s message must connect on an emotional basis to engage with target audiences to generate awareness, engagement and sales. ...

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Harold Kestenbaum
Partner - Harold L. Kestenbaum, PC

HAROLD L. KESTENBAUM is an attorney who has specialized in franchise law and other matters relating to franchising since 1977. From May 1982 until September 1986, Harold served as franchise and general counsel to Sbarro, Inc., the national franchisor of over 1,000 family-style Italian restaurants and, was a director from March 1985 to December 2006. From September 1983 to October 1989, he served a ...

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Lara Kisielewska
Founder - Optimum Design & Consulting

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Gaylen Knack
Principal - Gray Plant Mooty

Gaylen is a principal at Gray Plant Mooty and has been recognized as a leading franchise attorney globally by Chambers Global and International Who’s Who of Franchise Lawyers. He assists franchisors in structuring domestic and international franchise and distribution programs, and advises clients on related business, international trade regulation and trademark matters. Gaylen’s combined ...

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Luz-Maria Lambert
- VBOC

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Gary Laney
Co-Founder & CEO - Trustegrity

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George Lanzaro
Internet Pioneer & Founder - Parmamagoo Media

George Lanzaro has more than 20 years of success in the Digital Marketing and Advertising industry. He is recognized as an internet pioneer for helping to launch many top internet travel sites such as; Orbitz, Travelocity and Liberty Travel. Mr. Lanzaro continues to be instrumental by assisting Franchise Brands reach their goals through strategic digital marketing and sales development. C ...

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Kevin Lee
- Didit

Kevin Lee is Co-Founder and Executive Chairman of Didit a leading digital marketing and technology firm started in 1996. Marketers have diverse marketing needs, so Kevin transformed Didit from an SEO/SEM boutique into a one- stop-shop full-service digital-first marketing firm. Kevin invents marketing solutions for clients and launches platforms that make a difference. Kevin co-founded We-Car ...

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Man-Li Kuo Lin
Economic Development Specialist - U.S. Small Business Administration - New York

Ms. Man-Li Kuo Lin is Economic Development Specialist, District International Trade Officer, and Emerging Leaders Program Project Manager at the U.S. Small Business Administration New York District Office (SBA NYDO) marketing team in delivery small business resources to develop and grow businesses in 14 counties throughout New York City, Long Island and the downstate counties of Dutchess, Orange, ...

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Jeff Loehr
CEO & Co-founder - Engage Marketing

Jeff is CEO and co-founder of Engage Marketing, based in New York. He is a growth and communication specialist who helps companies connect with their market, increase their influence, drive sales and improve adoption of new ideas. He has worked with companies from around the world on creating strategies and implementing them through bringing clarity to communications, connecting with inte ...

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Bret Lowell
Partner - DLA Piper US LLP

Bret Lowell is an internationally recognized leader in franchise and distribution law, and has counseled and represented clients across a broad spectrum of industries, including restaurants and food service, car rental, hotel and motel, health care, financial services, high tech, real estate and retail. Bret's experience includes extensive analysis as to whether arrangements constitute "franchi ...

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Steve Lowisz
President - Qualigence International

As an entrepreneurial business and recruiting expert, I share my expertise with other organizations as a speaker, author, educator, and trainer. In addition to various speaking and training engagements, I act as a consultant for several Fortune 500 organizations each year. My business philosophy has always focused on putting the best interests of my clients first. In my speaking and training, ...

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Boyd Lowry
Marine Veteran and Glen Rock, NJ Franchisee - FirstLight HomeCare

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Christy Mahon
Franchise Owner - Dream Vacations

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Alan Majerko
Vice President, Corporate Development - Winmark Franchise Partners

Alan Majerko joined Winmark Corporation as Vice President, Corporate Development in January 2017. Mr. Majerko is leading the Winmark Franchise Partners initiative to partner with emerging franchisors that can benefit from Winmark’s expertise in starting, growing and managing successful franchise brands. Mr. Majerko was with Buffalo Wild Wings for the past ten years, most recently as Director, Emer ...

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Preeya Malik
- Step Global

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Grant Marcks
Principal, Head of Business Development - Atlantic Street Capital

Grant focuses on transaction sourcing for both new platforms and add-on acquisitions for the existing portfolio, as well as relationship management among the firm’s various constituencies. Grant joined Atlantic Street in July 2015. Prior to joining Atlantic Street, Grant spent five years with The Riverside Company as a member of their Origination team, where he was responsible for evaluating ...

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Carl Mazzanti
President - Emazzanti Technologies

Carl Mazzanti is a founder and President of eMazzanti Technologies. Carl led his firm to become Microsoft’s Partner of the Year in 2015, 2013 & 2012, Eastern Region Compete Partner of the Year, servers as the SMB Partner Area Lead for the Americas, is part of the RPAC meetings 2x times a year in Belleview, speaks every year at Microsoft’s Inspire, and his firm has Gold & Silver Competencies, ...

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Elayne McClaine
Regional Director - NJSBDC-Rutgers University-New Brunswick

Elayne P. Stanback-McClaine is Regional Director for the New Jersey Small Business Development Center at Rutgers New Brunswick. She has been involved with the SBDC since 2005 in various roles such as Lead Client Counselor, Instructor, and Assistant Director. oShe has extensive expertise in the areas of Business & Strategic Planning; Business Financial Management; Market Research; Business Val ...

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Nicole McCullum
Founder - Captivate Designs

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Adrian Miller
- Adrian Miller Sales Training

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Catherine Monson
Chief Executive Officer - FASTSIGNS International, Inc.

Catherine Monson is the CEO and President of FASTSIGNS International, Inc. She joined FASTSIGNS® in 2008 and brings more than 30 years of franchising and management experience including sales and marketing, operations, development, training and advocacy. In 2009, she was the recipient of the International Franchise Association’s (IFA) prestigious Bonny LeVine Award, given annually to a femal ...

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Rick Morey
Partner - DLA Piper US LLP

Richard Morey’s franchise and distribution practice is focused on working with both experienced and startup franchise companies, helping them structure new franchise programs and determine the most appropriate methods of single- and multi-unit franchising. Richard counsels franchisors on everyday compliance and other franchise-related issues, such as registration and disclosure matters, negoti ...

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Steve Murphy
- Winmark Franchise Partners

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Chae O'Brien
Founder - Thought Bakery

Chaenara O'Brien is an agile product marketer and former CMO, who has worked with local and international companies by educating them on essential growth strategies, custom suited to their industries, products and services. She is the founder and CEO of Thought Bakery, a digital marketing consultancy, and a certified SCORE mentor. ...

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Gary Occhiogrosso
Managing Partner - Franchise Growth Solutions

Currently, Gary Occhiogrosso is the Managing Partner of Franchise Growth Solutions, which is a national franchise development and sales firm. Their “Coach, Mentor & Grow Program” focuses on helping Franchisors with their franchise development, strategic planning, selling franchises and guiding franchisors in raising growth capital. Gary started his career in franchising as a franchisee ...

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Mary Ann O'Connell, CFE
President - FranWise®

Mary Ann O’Connell, CFE is the President of FranWise® a Franchise Counseling firm. She has been a multi-unit franchisee, a franchisor and supplier over four decades in franchising, creating a unique perspective. In addition to helping companies to convert to the franchise model and franchisors to improve their systems, O’Connell produced Franchise Capital Exchange, an event that introduced ...

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David W. Oppenheim
Shareholder - Greenberg Traurig, LLP

David W. Oppenheim concentrates his practice on domestic and international franchising, licensing and distribution matters. He is recognized by Chambers USA as a leading, national franchise attorney. He advises both emerging and mature companies with respect to planning, structuring and implementing national and international franchise, distribution and licensing programs, including negotiating fr ...

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Anthony Padulo
Chief Development Officer - School of Rock

Tony leads School of Rock's franchise sales and real estate efforts in the US and Internationally, and brings a wealth of experience expanding franchise companies' footprints.

Prior to joining School of Rock, Tony served as Executive Vice President of Global Development for BrightStar Care, the premier in-home care provider of medical and non-medical services. Before that he served exec ...

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Carter Pennington
- Cardinal Strategy Group LLC

With thirty years’ experience navigating companies undergoing difficult challenges and change through operational turnaround and strategic growth, Carter Pennington spearheaded exceptional profit and performance improvements for multinational firms across diverse industries. Developing and executing strategies that swiftly stemmed losses, recaptured revenue and restored profitability, he has ...

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Lee Plave
Partner - Plave Koch PLC

Lee has extensive experience counseling distributors and franchisors, including drafting and negotiating franchise agreements for complex international and domestic transactions and advising clients on all aspects of franchise and distribution law.

Lee also counsels clients on the application of technology to franchise and distribution systems. He focuses his attention on matters suc ...

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Scott Porter
- Brightwood Capital Advisors

Scott Porter is a Managing Director on the Investment Team with a focus on Transportation & Logistics and Franchising. Mr.Porter previously was a Partner at Uni-World Capital, where he spent over five years sourcing, managing private equity investments. Prior to Uni-World, Mr. Porter worked at CCP, where he was instrumental in assisting the company in a number of business development activit ...

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Nick Powills
- No Limit Agency

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Joseph J. Punturo
Assistant Attorney General, Franchise Section Chief - Office of the New York State Attorney General

Joseph Punturo is an Assistant Attorney General in the New York State Attorney General’s Investor Protection Bureau. The Investor Protection Bureau enforces the Martin Act, New York State’s securities law, and the Franchise Sales Act, New York State’s franchise law. Mr. Punturo is the Section Chief of the Franchise Section, and is responsible for franchise enforcement and registration, as we ...

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Vernon Riggs
Director of Development - Real Property Management at Neighborly

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Joe Rojas
Co-founder & Chief Visionary - Red Sapiens

Joe is co-founder and chief visionary of Red Sapiens, based in New York and author of How Entrepreneurs Thrive. He is a business coach, advisor and consultant who helps entrepreneurs overcome the challenges of business formation to create profitable growing businesses. As a serial entrepreneur himself he has faced the challenge of making new and growing businesses work. His career started ...

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Marla Rosner
Senior Learning and Development Consultant - MSA Worldwide

Marla Rosner is the Senior Learning and Development Consultant for MSA Worldwide, a domestic and international franchise advisory firm. She has excelled as a training professional for over twenty years.

During her 16-year tenure with Supercuts, an international hair care franchisor, Marla helped build the system from 75 locations to over 1,100 salons. As Vice President of Training an ...

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Brian Schnell
Partner - Faegre Baker Daniels

With more than 25 years of experience in franchising and product distribution, Brian Schnell is the chair of the firm's franchise practice that represents franchisors with headquarters based across the United States and abroad.

Brian's experience uniquely includes serving as the COO and Chief Legal Officer during 2012 for one of the country's leading health care franchisors. In the ...

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Max J. Schott
Principal - Gray Plant Mooty

For more than 20 years, Max Schott has practiced primarily in the area of franchise and distribution law, counseling clients ranging from start-ups to nationally recognized franchisors with multiple brands. Max assists clients in structuring their domestic and international franchise programs. He also advises clients on issues of disclosure and registration, relationship matters, supply chai ...

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Gigi Schweikert
President & COO - Lightbridge Academy

Gigi Schweikert is President & Chief Operating Officer of Lightbridge Franchise Company. Lightbridge Academy provides early learning and child care for children 6 weeks to 8 years. Known as “The Solution for Working Parents®.” Ms. Schweikert is also an internationally known thought leader in work/life balance, child care management and classroom supervision. With over 30 years of experience and 23 ...

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Michael Seid
Managing Director - MSA Worldwide

I am the founder and Managing Director of MSA Worldwide, a provider of domestic and international franchise advisory services. During my professional career I have been a senior operations officer, financial executive, or consultant for companies within the franchise, retail, restaurant, hospitality, healthcare, education, and service industries. I have also been both a franchisor and franchisee. ...

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Andrew Seid
Consultant - MSA Worldwide

Andrew is a consultant for MSA Worldwide, a domestic and international franchise advisory firm. While an experienced litigator and a transactional lawyer in franchising, Andrew is the son of our founder and franchising has been part of his life-long experience starting when he attended his first IFA convention at the age of ten.

Andrew earned his BA in business from Franklin & Marsha ...

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Johnny Sellyn
Head - Franchiseresales.com

Johnny Sellyn has been involved in franchising for over 20 years. Initially as founding director of the franchise consultancy division of one of world’s leading CPA’s and Business advisers. This followed a successful 30-year career in retail. In more recent times Johnny has created and run some of the leading franchise websites in the US, UK South Africa and Australia. Franchise resales .com was c ...

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Robert Serabin
- SCORE Mentor

Robert Serabin is a Sales and Marketing professional with more than 30 years’ experience in Aerospace, Industrial and Commercial markets. He graduated from Carnegie Mellon University with a BS in Mechanical Engineering. He also holds a MBA from Baldwin Wallace College. He has worked at both large and small companies, including his own consulting company. He has been a Score mentor since Jun ...

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Peter Maxwell Sessions
Founder and CEO - FewerHats

Peter Maxwell Sessions is the founder and CEO of Fewer Hats. He frequently consults with brands looking to get into the franchise space and helps them streamline their operations with technology. As a consulting firm, Fewer Hats has a strong focus on leveraging technology. Mr. Sessions has a background in strategic business development for technology companies. Most notably, he held a strat ...

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Aliya Shaikhina
Commercial Specialist - U.S. Commercial Service, U.S. Embassy Almaty

Aliya Shaikhina is a U.S. Commercial Service Specialist in Almaty, Kazakhstan. She has been with the U.S. Consulate General in Almaty for more than 9 years and covers Franchising since 2010. Aliya has a degree in International Economics and was with the Embassy of Canada and in travel consulting prior to that. ...

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Mark Siebert
CEO - iFranchise Group

Mark Siebert CEO – iFranchise Group Author of Franchise Your Business, The Guide to Employing the Greatest Growth Strategy Ever, and a franchise business consultant since 1985, Mr. Siebert founded the iFranchise Group in 1998 as an organization dedicated to developing long-term relationships with successful franchisor clientele. Mr. Siebert has worked with hundreds of franchisors, from start-u ...

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Adam Siegelheim
Attorney - Stark & Stark

Adam J. Siegelheim is a Shareholder and member of the Business & Corporate and Franchise Groups. Mr. Siegelheim’s practice includes the representation of companies and non-profit organizations on a variety of issues including entity formation, financing, intellectual property, real estate, mergers and acquisitions, and insurance coverage matters.

Mr. Siegelheim’s franchise practice inclu ...

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John Skelton
Partner - Seyfarth Shaw LLP

John Skelton is a partner in the Litigation Department of Seyfarth Shaw LLP. He is an experienced trial lawyer having tried cases and appeared before a variety of state and federal courts and administrative agencies. In addition to a diverse commercial litigation and trial practice, Mr. Skelton has successfully defended numerous manufacturers and franchise clients in a variety of matters, in ...

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Josh Smith
Head of Franchising - Riverside Company

Josh Smith is currently the head of franchising at the Riverside Company which is a private equity firm with over $8bn in assets under management. Josh Smith has been with Riverside for 4 years working on acquisitions and with portfolio companies to drive growth. Josh currently serves as a board member of Best Life Brands and is working with management to grow it into the largest multi-bra ...

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Ryan Son
Founder/CEO - MulDaePo BBQ, Sushi Hon, Shuto Izakaya, and JJan Gastropub

Withn three years, he has successfully opened and ran four restaurants in LA in his twenties. Serving various cuisines and types of food to serve; from sushi, barbeque, to a bar Grabbed attention of all of Koreatown and rest of Los Angeles. Running four franchises in only four years and currently still hot ...

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Eric Stites
President - Franchise Business Review

Eric Stites is the CEO & Managing Director of Franchise Business Review, a national market research and consulting company specializing in franchisee satisfaction and franchise relations issues. Franchise Business Review’s mission is to two-fold. To help franchise brands that wish to better serve their franchisees and strengthen their systems. To help bring transparency to the franchise industry b ...

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David Stone
- SCORE Mentor

David Stone is an experienced executive in health and mental health industries. He has assumed senior sales roles in start ups, fast growth and mid-sized companies. He is an expert in growth strategies, business development, government sales, and lean product development. David is a certified SCORE mentor. ...

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Yahya K. Sultan
Marketing Coach - HalalFranchise.com

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Usman Waheed
Founder HalalFranchise.com & President Sepco Ventures - HalalFranchise.com

Usman is the founder of HalalFranchise.Com (HF), an agency facilitating the expansion of Halal Businesses through franchising. HF brings together subject matter experts, investors and direct access to Halal markets in order to help businesses expand and serve a quickly growing and highly under-served $5 trillion global Halal market. Usman also serves as the President of SEPCO Ventures a ...

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Esaam Waheed
Son of Usman - HalalFranchise.com

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Maisha Walker
- Message Medium and the Internet Strategist, Inc. Magazine

Maisha Walker is the President of Message Medium, a multiple-award-winning digital marketing agency that helps companies leverage SEO, search advertising, email marketing, and Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram advertising, and organic social media content, to achieve aggressive customer growth. Maisha has been building Web sites and creating digital marketing campaigns for more than 20 year ...

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Jerry Weinstein
- SCORE Mentor

Jerry Weinstein is an entrepreneur, a member of multiple boards, and a business executive experienced in manufacturing-oriented businesses, construction products and materials, public and private corporations, and the global marketplace. He is an expert in managing start-ups, turnarounds, and non-profit organizations. Jerry is a certified SCORE mentor. ...

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Steve White
- PuroClean

Steve White has been involved in every level of both food and B2B franchises, including ownership. His passionate leadership has radically changed failing organizations and helped good organizations become great.

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Mark Whittle, CFE
Chief Development Officer - Hooters of America, LLC

Mark’s robust experience spans 31 years in corporate and franchise development, specifically in site selection, franchise sales, design and construction for the restaurant industry. Mark currently serves as Chief Global Development Officer for Hooters of America, the iconic 33 year old brand with over 420 restaurants in 28 countries. Prior to joining Hooters, Mark was the Chief Development Offic ...

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Matt Wiggins
VetFran Fellow - International Franchise Association

Matt Wiggins is the IFA’s inaugural VetFran Fellow. After serving as an IFA intern, he transitioned into the role in August. Coming from a military family, Matt has dedicated his work at IFA to improving and building the VetFran program. Through his fellowship, he hopes to make franchising more accessible to veterans across America. ...

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Linda Woolf
- Dream Vacations

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Tao Xu
Partner - DLA Piper US LLP

Tao Xu devotes his practice to franchising and distribution matters, especially international franchising, licensing and distribution transactions. Tao counsels a broad range of clients in their international expansions, including master franchising, multi-unit licensing, area development, single-unit licensing and direct investment (both joint venture and wholly owned). Tao is particularl ...

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Burt Yarkin
Managing Director - McLean Group

Burt Yarkin is a Managing Director of The McLean Group’s San Francisco, CA office. Mr. Yarkin leads The McLean Group’s Franchise and Consumer, Specialty Retail & Restaurant practices, advising global companies, franchisors and large multi-unit franchisees on mergers & acquisitions and capital formation. The Franchise practice group is one of the most active investment banking groups nationally. M ...

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Ralph Yarusso, CFE
Chief Development Officer - Grease Monkey International

Ralph Yarusso is a former Multi-Unit Meineke franchisee owning 15 centers over a 23 year period. After selling his centers Ralph also served on the corporate side of riven Brands in Franchise Development and operations lastly being appointed to oversee more than 500 centers as Regional Vice President and Chief Operating Officer. In his position at Grease Monkey International, he oversees franchise ...

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Philip Zeidman
Senior Partner - DLA Piper US LLP

Philip Zeidman devotes his practice to domestic and international distribution, licensing and franchising law. In 2017 Mr. Zeidman received Who's Who Legal's Lifetime Achievement Award at a ceremony in London. Mr. Zeidman was named Global Franchise Lawyer of the Year for 9 years, every year the award has been given. Mr. Zeidman received the Burton Award of Excellence in Legal Writing from the Li ...

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Carl Zwisler
Principal - Gray Plant Mooty

Carl Zwisler focuses his practice on representing franchisors, manufacturers, and investors in structuring, negotiating, and enforcing domestic and international franchise, licensing, distribution, and acquisition agreements. He also assists executives and general counsel in more than 85 industries or industry segments with creative solutions for developing and implementing business expansio ...

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