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Curated Collection Of The Best Interviews From Our Sandy Springs Studio

Sean Mabey with Wells Fargo, Jeff Hannah with Nuance International, and Rob Tate with PossibleNOW

Sean Mabey/Wells Fargo

Sean Mabey is Senior Vice President and the Director of Small Business Strategy for Wells Fargo in Atlanta and across Georgia, Mississippi, and Tennessee. He helps lead a team of hundreds of trained small business bankers based in almost every Wells Fargo banking store in the Atlanta area. A banker with the company for 14 years, Sean has spent the last seven years in Atlanta.  His previous position was Community Bank President in the North Atlanta metro area. Wells Fargo offers a full library of videos, podcasts and articles to help small businesses at

Jeff Hannah/Nuance International

Jeff Hannah is the President of Nuance International. He is also a leader, lecturer, consultant, and writer in the fields of international project management, budgeting, design, and cultures. With an accomplished track record of more than 20 years, Jeff has led large, multicultural teams in the strategic development, design, and management of complex projects in over 50 countries. He has managed companies in London, Abu Dhabi and Atlanta. Jeff specializes in understanding the various cultural nuances and the distinct challenges to working in each region of the world and has developed methodologies and processes for mitigating those risks to deliver world-class solutions. Jeff earned his B.S. Degree in Industrial Design from the Georgia Institute of Technology.

Rob Tate/PossibleNOW

Rob Tate is the Preference Management Evangelist for PossibleNOW and has extensive expertise in direct marketing compliance and consumer privacy. He helps enterprise clients architect appropriate multi-channel preference management strategies by leveraging professional services and cloud-based technology. Rob has spoken in a number of industry and association forums and focuses on the high tech, communications, and financial services verticals.  Rob also highlights the upcoming Customer Experience Marketing Summit 2012, happening in Atlanta September 19-20. For listeners of today’s show, Rob is offering a $300 discount off registration for the event – use promo code 300CEMSUMMIT2012.

Special Edition Atlanta Business Radio: Georgia Society of CPAs

Special Edition ABR today had a special guest co-host, Bonnie Buol Ruszczyk.

Bonnie Buol Ruszczyk/bbr Marketing

Bonnie Buol Ruszczyk is the President and Founder of bbr marketing, a firm that provides marketing strategy and services to professional services firms. By having such a narrow market, she has been able to create a name for herself and her company, and was recently named “One to Watch” by AccountingToday on their Top 100 Most Influential People of 2011. She attributes the awareness and growth of her firm to a number of things, one of the most effective has been making connections with others and actively networking among her peers. She is never hesitant to make introductions to colleagues with the hopes that they will eventually work together, refer business to each other or simply enjoy getting to know each other. She’s even been known to reach out to her competitors, and has made some lasting friendships and alliances because of this strategy. At the end of the day, she feels the good that can be done by connecting people far outweighs any negative impact. And who doesn’t enjoy meeting someone new?

Boyd E. Search/The Georgia Society of CPAs

Boyd is the Chief Staff Executive of the Georgia Society of CPAs, he manages all staff in executing the activities, policies and strategic initiatives of the Society to the benefit of the membership. With 14 years of experience in association management, Boyd also manages the legislative efforts of the GSCPA and interacts nationally on behalf of the Society. As CEO, his work is focused on ensuring GSCPA delivers value to members by creating opportunities for CPAs to be leaders in their profession, directing legislative initiatives and advocating on behalf of the profession, communicating the most critical professional issues, delivering relevant high-quality CPE, safe-guarding the professions high professional standards, building community and developing engagement among members, and attracting the best and the brightest to careers as CPAs.

Previously Boyd worked as the Vice President of Education and Training for The Ohio Society of CPAs where he profitably managed the Society’s continuing professional education program of over 500 courses annually, as well as developed and managed events and sales.

Don Cook/The Georgia Society of CPAs

Don Cook is the Vice President of Membership and Business Development at the Georgia Society of CPAs, the premier professional organization for CPAs in the state of Georgia. His career includes 8 years in association management with an additional 8 years in government contracting and sales.

In his role with the GSCPA, Don is responsible for the member relations side of the business. Additionally, Don focuses on government relations and the issues facing the accounting profession while keeping an eye open for development of any new lines of business and opportunities that may arise. He is also a member of the American Society of Association Executives and holds a Bachelor of Science degree in business administration with a minor in history from West Virginia Wesleyan College.

Hanno Ekdahl with Big Sky Associates, Carrie Podber with Pass2Pros, and Michael Moore with Buckhedge

Hanno Ekdahl/Big Sky Associates

Hanno Ekdahl, CEO of Big Sky Associates, Inc., is an entrepreneur with more than 10 years of experience as a managing partner and consulting principal. He has served on the EO Atlanta Board since 2009 and will become President of the EO Atlanta chapter in June 2013. He is Co-Founder and Managing Partner of Big Sky Associates, Inc. Key engagements include the development of a new security clearance process for the U.S. Army, which dramatically reduced the time and cost to award security clearances. Based on the merits of this project, four Big Sky consultants, including Mr. Ekdahl, won the U.S. Army Commander’s Award for Public Service. During his career, Mr. Ekdahl has led a wide variety of engagements with major companies in the financial services, energy, manufacturing, retail and health care industries.

Prior to starting Big Sky Associates, Mr. Ekdahl worked at Novell and Cambridge Technology Partners. He holds an International MBA from University of South Carolina’s Moore School of Business and a Bachelor of Science from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill.

Carrie Podber/Pass2Pros

Carrie founded Pass2Pros (P2P), soon to be the social network game where sports fans interact with their favorite professional athletes in a safe and secure online virtual environment.

She has experience in building operational foundations at start-up to expansion stage companies with a relevant background in the commercialization of e-commerce and software-related products.

Carrie also founded echain communities, llc., an online platform for facilitating introductions and building relationships in the business community. In addition it functioned as an online Social Marketing/PR/Media venue. Carrie co-founded eChainReaction, Inc., as an online collaboration and business networking platform for her existing network and client base within the start-up to expansion community. Carrie also was the founder of Flying Outsourcer, a comprehensive provider of outsourced business services to both pre and post-IPO companies and helped launch the Atlanta market for financial community events for both the private and public market.

Michael Moore/Buckhedge

With extensive experience consulting to new and established companies, Michael E. Moore is Co-Founder and CEO of Buckhedge. His work is centered on mentoring and coaching others in a variety of industries from IT and New Media, to service and distribution – always focused on creating value from connecting with others.

Over many years, Michael has become known as an effective and inspiring leader – planning, executing, managing, and troubleshooting second-stage strategic initiatives and complex projects of enterprise-wide consequence.

Mr. Moore has enjoyed career success in both staff and line functions in financial, manufacturing and service industries. His entrepreneurial endeavors have involved him in many leading-edge ideas and markets (transportation, logistics, design and sourcing). In the most recent decade he has contributed to capital mentoring and solutions education for angel and leveraged sources, (Gathering of Angels, Ritz Group and NBAI), and is a lifetime member of CEO Space.

Michael has served in many differing leadership positions – both faith and secular- based. His interests in the arts, education and the next generation have involved him in the Atlanta Dogwood Festival for many years and with Children’s Healthcare in community leadership. Michael currently serves as President of the Buckhead 50 Club, an 80 year old civic association, and is active in CEO Netweavers, a “pay-it- forward” association of seasoned executives. Mr. Moore has spoken on leadership and the responsibilities of position to boards and leadership teams in many areas during his 40-year professional career.

Michael Woodard with Return on People Development, ASTD Conference

Michael Woodard joined us in the studio to highlight the ASTD upcoming conference on August 20th called ACE.   The 2012 Atlanta Conference & Exposition (ACE) will be held at the Westin Atlanta Perimeter North.

ASTD (American Society for Training & Development)

ASTD is the world’s largest association dedicated to workplace learning and performance professionals. ASTD’s members come from more than 100 countries and connect locally in more than 130 U.S. chapters and with more than 30 international partners. Members work in thousands of organizations of all sizes, in government, as independent consultants, and suppliers.

Michael Woodard/Return on People Development

Michael Woodard is a Learning & Development expert with more than 26 years of experience in sales, sales leadership and training and development, in the Retail and Food Service industries. Mike is known to be a thought-leader in Adult Learning and Sales and Corporate Leadership Development and is recognized for his contributions throughout the Learning community.

Michael spent the first 12 years of his career in various sales and leadership roles at Sweetheart Cup Company, Amoco Foam Products and Tenneco Packaging. In 1997, Mike made the move from Sales to Sales Training and Leadership Development. Over the past 14 years, he has served as the Director, Global Sales Training and Development for SC Johnson, Georgia-Pacific, PepsiCo and Gillette. Michael consistently developed high-impact Sales and Leadership Development curriculum to address strategic business issues, drive individual, team and organization performance, while maximizing ROI.

Michael earned a B.S.B.A in Economics and Finance from Aquinas College and an M.A. with emphasis in Management and Leadership Development from Webster University. He is also a graduate of the Harvard Kennedy School of Government Executive Education with an emphasis in Leadership Development and the Harvard Business School of Executive Education with an emphasis in Negotiations and Critical Decision Making.

Married to Diane for the last twenty-five years, Michael is the father of three daughters. He is an avid golfer, scuba diver, traveler, and reader. When he is not with his family in Atlanta or traveling on business, Michael enjoys spending time down at the beach in Destin, FL.


Allyson Eman with Venture Atlanta, Bill Ramsey with China Business Consulting, and Michael Mogill with Crisp Media Group

Allyson Eman/Venture Atlanta

Allyson Eman has 20 years of marketing, sales and communications experience. In 2007, Allyson took on the role of Executive Director for the newly created Venture Atlanta annual conference. Allyson has worked with key business leaders from Metro Atlanta Chamber, Atlanta CEO Council and Technology Association of Georgia to build the premier venture capital conference in Georgia. The conference is now in its fifth year. Prior to joining Venture Atlanta, Allyson was the Senior Vice President of Marketing and Communications for SouthStar Funding, a wholesale mortgage lender headquartered in Atlanta. During her 9 year tenure with the firm, she helped the company grow from 8 employees to 800 with 30 nationwide offices. SouthStar Funding grew to be one of the most reputable, respected and trusted wholesale mortgage lenders in the country under Allyson’s leadership. SouthStar received many accolades including A+ Employer, Fastest Growing Privately Held Company in Georgia and was included on Inc. 500’s list of fastest growing privately held companies. Prior to joining SouthStar, Allyson worked for SouthTrust Bank as a branch marketing manager overseeing the marketing platform for 100 branches across Georgia. Allyson received a BS from the University of Florida and resides in Marietta with her husband and two children.

Bill Ramsey/ China Business Consulting, LLC

Bill Ramsey, CEO of China Business Consulting, is a respected and valued senior operations executive providing global experience with an emphasis on China and Hong Kong markets. During his 31 years in the legal industry and 8 years in healthcare, he has contributed to operational success through his expertise in general business management, mergers and acquisitions, global operations, national and international office start-ups, and project management. He has also successfully led finance, human resources, marketing, technology, facilities, leasing and construction.

During his 21 year career with Troutman Sanders, he performed due diligence and planning that led to establishing offices in Hong Kong (1997), London (2001), Shanghai (2006), Washington, D.C. and Portland. Mergers and acquisitions added offices in North Carolina, Virginia, New York City, Chicago and California.

Ironically, Bill lived in Japan in the early seventies and also traveled to Hong Kong, Taiwan and Thailand. Those early experiences would prove to be beneficial later in his career when he returned to Hong Kong in 1997 to open Troutman Sanders’ first international office. He has been active in the Hong Kong Association of Atlanta since 1997 and became its president in 2007. He is also active in the Federation of Hong Kong Business Associations Worldwide and served on its Executive Committee since 2007.

In June of 2011, Mr. Ramsey retired from Troutman Sanders and founded China Business Consulting, LLC. CBC has focused on assisting small businesses determine whether a China strategy makes sense for them. They also work with their clients to implement their plan in an efficient and cost effective manner.

Michael Mogill/Crisp Media Group

Michael Mogill is the President and Founder of Crisp Media Group. Crisp Media Group creates media that sizzles on the screen, igniting your brand’s potential. Simply put, their team produces slick video solutions that clients love and customers share. Whether it’s a corporate video, small business video, or start-up demo, Crisp Media Group’s video production services are flexible for your needs, and they’ve been fortunate to work with a variety of industry-leading clients. From corporate videos to dental video, Crisp Media Group tailors their concept and execution to the needs of each project, taking into account timeline, audience, budget and distribution.

Michael Mogill is also the Owner & Founder of Atlanta’s leading multimedia marketing company, ATL Nightlife. He also founded Reboot Music, Atlanta’s leading electronic music brand, and has served as the Vice President of FIT Radio, an online (and mobile) streaming music service. He is firm believer in establishing rock-solid company culture — one that values loyalty and diligence, and is execution-focused, with a strong ability to take initiative over ideas to create tangible deliverables.