Usha Haley is W. Frank Barton Distinguished Chair in International Business, Director/Center
for International Business Advancement, and tenured, full Professor of Management
at Wichita State University. She is elected chair of the World Trade Council of Wichita.
She has been full-time faculty at West Virginia University, Massey University (New
Zealand), University of New Haven, University of Tennessee-Knoxville, New Jersey Institute
of Technology/Rutgers, Australian National University (Australia), National University
of Singapore (Singapore), and ITESM-Monterrey (Mexico); and taught graduate students
at Harvard University, Purdue University and in executive-development programs in
Her research focuses on multinational corporations and international strategy, Asian and emerging markets, business-government relations, innovation, technology development, strategic decision-making, sanctions, subsidies and broader social and political impacts of research in business schools. She has 330 publications and presentations including 29 academic journal articles in Journal of International Business Studies, Human Relations, Journal of Management Studies, Academy of Management Learning & Education (AMLE), Technological Forecasting & Social Change, California Management Review, and Harvard Business Review, among others, and 8 books. Her authored books include Subsidies to Chinese Industry (headlined twice in the Economist, reviewed in Strategy+Business as “important” and “influential”, and China findings described by JP Morgan as “with no equal in terms of scope, breadth and impact”); Multinational Corporations in Political Environments (reviewed in the Wall Street Journal and Academy of Management Review); Chinese Tao of Business (reviewed in the Wall Street Journal as the only business book on Asia to buy); New Asian Emperors (reviewed in the Economist as an “important study”); and, Impact and the Management Researcher (reviewed in Academy of Management Learning and Education, AACSB Insights, Chronicle of Higher Education and Poets & Quants).
Usha’s research has had regulatory influence over 40 times. She testified before the US Senate on Shuanghui’s takeover of Smithfield Foods, the most important case on FDI in a decade. She also testified on her research on China to the USCC and twice before the Committee on Ways and Means, including on federal legislation, the Non-market Economy Trade Remedy Act whose findings were incorporated into US regulation (HR 1229). She presented her research before the US International Trade Commission, US Department of Commerce and US Trade Representative. She was nominated to join the US delegation on the Steel Dialogue with China and advised on the US-China Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade. Her research on Chinese subsidies is the basis of 3 pieces of EU anti-dumping regulation and in the US ITA’s countervailing duties against China.
Competitive research grants she received as Principal Investigator include from the National Science Foundation (NSF) (sole Principal Investigator) and Instit. for the Study of Econ. Growth for international technology development; the Academy of Management (AOM) for scholarly impact; USCC; the National Research Center for Coal & Energy; and, WVU Research, Global Affairs and Energy for global supply chains. She co-Chaired the AOM Practice Theme Committee on external engagement through research. She serves/served on 9 corporate, non-profit and governmental planning/advisory boards, including USGlass Inc., Kansas International Trade Coordinating Council, Elea-Olivetti (Italy), Emerald Publishing (UK), and Hainan Province (China). She is lead editor for an AMLE special issue on Scholarly Impact, sits/has sat on 11 academic journals’ editorial boards, served as founding co-Editor in Chief or Regional Editor for 4 journals, and edited 4 journal special issues on strategic management. She is co-Editor-in- Chief of the book series Multinational Investment and Business and 7 volume Encyclopedia of Multinational Investment and Growth. Her service as grants reviewer includes for the NSF , Marsden Fund (New Zealand), CIBER (US Dept. of Education), and Networks of Centers of Excellence, Canada.
She served 36 times as keynote/plenary speaker including at the British Association of Management (UK), Brazilian Steel Institute (Brazil), Academy of Management, Latin American Steel Industry Association (Argentina), Global Economic Summit (India), Organization for Women in International Trade, Center for Strategic & International Studies, Timbro (Sweden), Foreign Correspondents Club (Hong Kong), ITESM (Mexico), National Committee on US- China Relations, TIE-The Indus Entrepreneurs, and, Trinity College, Cambridge (UK). Her expertise has been profiled over 570 times in the international media (almost weekly over the last decade) including multiple times in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, USA Today, Guardian, CNN, Economist, Washington Post, National Business Review, Australian, PBS, and NPR.
Major research/leadership awards include the Academy of Management’s Practice Impact Award for scholarly impact and for “Truly Outstanding Leadership and Service”; the Economist’s “Thought Leader” on emerging markets; Emerald Publishing’s Lifetime Achievement Award for Asia Pacific business; American Made Hero for supporting US manufacturing; Wichita Business Journal’s “Women who Lead in Education”, and, the Glorious India Award for academic contributions by one born in India. Teaching awards include University Lecturer of the Year . Her academic qualifications include a PhD and MPhil, Stern School of Business, New York University; MA, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; and, BA, from Elphinstone College, University of Bombay, India.
Ted J. Vlamis
Ted joined Pioneer Balloon Company in 1981, working as a Sales Representative covering the Midwest. In the mid-80's he began handling Pioneer's international business, and as Pioneer's international business expanded, he began devoting his concentration on this part of the business. As Vice President of International and Research & Development, Ted is responsible for overseeing Pioneer's facilities in Hamilton, ON, Canada, Puebla, Pue., Mexico, Acatlán de Juarez, Jal., Mexico, Bishop's Stortford, Herts., UK, Sydney, N.S.W. Australia, and Jundiai, SP, Brazil. Through these facilities and third party distributors, Pioneer's balloons are sold in more than 100 countries.
In addition, Ted serves on the Board of The Wichita Symphony Orchestra, as well as serving as Treasurer of The Wichita Jazz Festival and The Society of Vertebrate Paleontology.
BKD, LLP CPAs and Advisors
A.J. Anderson is director of the Wichita office of the U.S. Commercial Service of the U.S. Department of Commerce. The U.S. Commercial Service is part of an international network covering all 50 states with offices in about 80 countries. His office is dedicated to assisting small and medium size companies to increase their export business through export counseling and advice, information on markets abroad, international partner contacts and advocacy services.
Originally from Wichita, KS and a graduate of Wichita State University, he's worked in a variety of operational and business development roles in international banking in KS, TX and GA. He's also worked in trade risk mitigation at Koch Industries.
He joined the U.S. Commercial Service in May of 2003 in the Des Moines, IA office and took over as director of the Wichita office in June of 2006. He is a Certified International Credit Professional by FCIB and a member of the U.S. Commercial Service's Aerospace Team and Agribusiness Team.
Amir Etezazi was elected Chief Executive Officer of Etezazi-Industries, in 2014. Etezazi- Industries Inc.( EII), is a Leading Company in Industrial Engineering, Design and Manufacturing of Machined parts, components, and IT Support to the government and Defense (DLA), leading aviation and aerospace manufacturers, Industrial companies and Businesses. Etezazi Industries can handle Design, Engineering and Manufacturing (DEM) projects in addition with simple short-term projects, reverse engineering, mold or die design and manufacturing, and also manufacturing of low quantity preliminary designs, test and spare parts, Blue streak, as well as high quantity production and assemblies. Prior to being elected CEO, Mr. Etezazi was Director of Operations/Business Development of Etezazi-Industries.
April Chiang is the International Project Manager in the International Division at the Kansas Department of Commerce.
April manages trade, investment, and foreign affairs projects between Kansas and Greater China Region. Her responsibilities include managing the Kansas International Trade Show Assistance Program (KITSAP), Kansas International Trade Marketing Assistance Program (KITMAP), and the Kansas Governor’s Exporter of the Year Award program. She also involved profoundly in the Kansas-Henan Sister-States Relationship. In her 20 years with the agency, she has worked on numerous business initiatives with companies and government entities between Kansas and China, Hong Kong and Taiwan.
Prior to joining Kansas Commerce agency, April had years of managerial experience in apparel field with several multi-national companies, including K-Mart Taiwan Ltd. April also was with KPMG Taiwan Office as the Executive Recruiter for a few years. She holds a bachelor’s degree in English Literature from Culture University in Taiwan, a training certificate at International Business Education And Research (IBEAR) Program in University of Southern California, and an MBA degree from Washburn University in Topeka.
April Chiang was an adjunct professor on International Business course for the MBA program at Washburn University in Topeka for a couple of years.
Brandon Sluka is an MBA alumni from Wichita State and currently works at Amazon. He used to fly to Wichita from different parts of the country to attend our talks and he has a deep interest in what we do. Brandon has over 20 years working in logistics with multiple FedEx companies and most recently, Amazon. As a Regional Manager within the DSP program, Brandon leads a team of experienced business coaches to manage 140 3rd party logistics companies with over $360MM annualized spending in 28 locations throughout the Northeastern United States. In addition to managing a field-facing team, Brandon ideates global 3PL partnership strategies, implements scalable process & drives efficiencies at one of the largest, fastest-growing middle and last -mile logistics operations on earth.
Craig Lawson is Manager of Trade Compliance, Indirect Goods and Services, Contracts,
and Transportation for Bombardier Business Aircraft in Wichita, Kansas. In his role,
he supports trade compliance and transportation for all Bombardier U.S. locations.
Craig joined Bombardier in 1995 with roles in Program Management and Contract support for Procurement prior to his current role.
Originally from Kansas City, Craig is a licensed Customs Broker, has a BS in Accounting, Business Management, and Economics from Baker University, and a J.D., MBA from the University of Kansas.
Dina has more than 20 years of International Banking experience and is one of the only Certified Documentary Credit Specialists in the Midwest. She earned an international business/economics degree from Wichita State University and is a graduate of the University of Copenhagen International Business Program. Dina is active in the World Trade Council of Wichita, Kansas District Export Council, Kansas International Trade Coordinating Council and Organization of Women in International Trade (OWIT). Dina is a member of Bankers Association for Finance and Trade (BAFT), serving on the Trade Compliance, North Central Standby and Commercial Letter of Credit committees as well as the BAFT Regional Bank Council.
Donald E. McClure
United States AirForce
Lt Col Donald E. McClure is the Deputy Group Commander for the 184th Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance Group, McConnell AFB, KS. He assists in the directing and resourcing of three intelligence squadrons supporting multiple Combatant Commands around the globe. Lt Colonel McClure enlisted in the Air Force in 1992 as a Structural Repair Craftsman and served four years on active duty at Holloman AFB, NM. Following his separation from active duty Lt Col McClure joined the Texas Air National Guard serving for one year which included a deployment to Al Kharj AB, SA. After transferring to the Kansas Air National Guard in 1997 he served as both dual status technician and Drill Status Guardsman supporting B-1B and KC-135 aircraft operations.
In 2004 Lt Col McClure was selected for a commissioning opportunity with the 161st Intelligence Squadron as an MQ-1 and U-2 Mission Operations Commander. Upon squadron mobilization in 2006 Lt Col McClure served two years deployed in garrison providing support to OPERATION ENDURING FREEDOM and OPERATION IRAQI FREEDOM. In 2008 Lt Col McClure served six months as the Functional Area Manager for the DCGS weapon system at National Guard Bureau headquarters. While there he was responsible for the coordination and staffing of Combatant Command requirements including the initial deployment of ANG personnel supporting MC-12 Project Liberty. In 2011 Lt Col McClure deployed as the Senior intelligence Officer supporting AFSOC…to Al Asad AB, Iraq and redeployed to Mazar-e-Sharif AB, Afghanistan.
Prior to this assignment Lt Colonel McClure served as the Ground ISR Branch Chief, National Guard Bureau Headquarters, Andrews AFB, MD where he was responsible for the functional management, resourcing and readiness of over 5,000 intelligence professionals across 90 Wings in 54 states and territories, and while there he was selected to study Grand Strategy at the United States Air Force Air War College, Air University, Maxwell AFB, AL.
2001 Bachelor of General Studies, Wichita State University, Wichita, Kan.
2004 Intelligence Officer Applications Course, Goodfellow AFB, Tx.
2012 Squadron Officer School, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
2016 Air Command and Staff College by correspondence
2016 Master of Military Operational Art and Science, Air University, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
2017 Cyber Operations Fundamentals Course by correspondence
2022 Master of Strategic Studies, Grand Strategy Concentration, Air War College, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
1. October 2004 – May 2005, Student, Intelligence Officer Applications Course, Goodfellow AFB, Texas
2. May 2005 – April 2006, Chief of Mission Management, 161st Intelligence Squadron, McConnell AFB, Kan.
3. April 2006 – September 2008, Chief of Training, 161st Intelligence Squadron, McConnell AFB, Kan.
4. September 2008 – December 2010, Chief of Plans and Programs, 184th Operations Support Squadron, McConnell AFB, Kan.
5. December 2010 – July 2012, Chief of Standardization and Evaluations, 184th Intelligence Group, McConnell AFB, Kan.
6. July 2012 – July 2013, Chief of Current Operations, 161st Intelligence Squadron, McConnell AFB, Kan.
7. July 2013 – July 2014, Assistant Director of Operations, 161st Intelligence Squadron, McConnell AFB, Kan.
8. July 2014 – October 2016, Director of Operations, 161st Intelligence Squadron, McConnell AFB, Kan.
9. October 2016 – January 2019, Commander, 184th Intelligence Support Squadron, McConnell AFB, Kan.
10. January 2019 – June 2021, Ground ISR Branch Chief, Air National Guard Readiness Center, Joint Base Andrews, Md.
11. June 2021 – May 2022, Student, Air War College, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
12. May 2022 – Present, Deputy Group Commander, 184th Intelligence, Surveillance & Reconnaissance Group,McConnell AFB, Kan.
MAJOR AWARDS AND DECORATIONS
Meritorious Service Medal with two oak leaf clusters
Air Force Commendation Medal with three oak leaf clusters
Air Force Achievement Medal with two oak leaf clusters
Joint Meritorious Unit Award with oak leaf cluster
Meritorious Unit Award with two oak leaf clusters
EFFECTIVE DATES OF PROMOTION
Second Lieutenant April 23, 2004
First Lieutenant April 23, 2006
Captain April 23, 2008
Major October 5, 2012
Lt Colonel June 3, 2017
(CURRENT AS OF SEPTEMBER 2022)
Director of Global Business Development,
As Director of Global Business Development, Issam Stouky is responsible for managing business initiatives and the sale of ICM’s innovative technologies, products and services outside the U.S.
He joined ICM in 2007 as a strategic supply chain manager in operations, developing customer-supplier relationships and joint ventures. Later he was promoted to warranty and export compliance manager. In 2011, he joined ICM’s international business team and assisted with developing integrated financial models and ICM’s international strategy before focusing on sales.
Prior to joining ICM, Issam had a successful aviation career specializing in finances, operations and exports. He has also managed the implementation of numerous Six Sigma and lean manufacturing concepts for technology companies.
Issam earned his Bachelor of Business Administration in accounting and minored in mathematics at Wichita State University. He received his Master of Business Administration from Southwestern College.
Juan Manuel Escalante
Vice President of Sales,
Juan Escalante joined Textron back in 2007, in his current role as Vice President of Sales, he leads the SkyCourier sales organization worldwide for Textron Aviation. During his career at Textron, Juan lived and worked in Singapore, as VP of Global Finance for Asia Pacific, Europe, Middle East, and Africa, where he was responsible for managing all functional activities in the region, leading a cross-functional team of talented sales, credit, and customer service professionals, as well as managing a multi-hundred million dollar portfolio. Escalante spent ten years in Latin America. First in Sao Paulo, Brazil leading Textron Financial’s operations in the Southern Cone of Latin America, then in Santiago, Chile where he supported new business and organic growth opportunities for Textron through development of innovative solutions for customers in culturally diverse regions. Juan’s team sold over 200 new aircraft and
generated over USD$500 million in exports and revenue. Earlier in his career, Juan supported US aircraft manufacturer’s sales by structuring Export
Credit financing as Vice President of Global Finance for AirFinance. Juan has traveled to and conducted business in over 50 countries, speaks fluent English,
Spanish, and Portuguese. He has a Bachelor’s degree in Economics as well as an MBA from Wichita State University where he was the captain of the Men’s Tennis Team from 2001 to 2004. He also graduated from Thunderbird University’s Executive Leadership Program. Escalante serves on the board of directors of Educational Communities Worldwide, empowering students to drive change in their community through globally accessible programs in education and leadership skills. Born and raised in Argentina, citizen of the world, proud father and husband, competed in 7 marathons and going for more...
Juan is based in Wichita, KS and can be reached at email@example.com
Laura Lombard is the President and CEO of Kansas Global Trade Services. After graduating from Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) in 2010, she worked at The Cohen Group (TCG), a global business consulting firm founded by former Secretary of Defense William S. Cohen, providing tactical and strategic advisory to Fortune 500 companies. After leaving TCG, Lombard founded an international business development organization called the Middle East & North Africa Consultants Association (MENA Consultants) in 2012 in Washington, DC. Since moving back to Wichita in 2017, Lombard led an online workforce development company called ImEpik, ran for the 4th District Congressional seat, and consulted for the Climate + Energy Project. In addition to her master’s degree from Johns Hopkins SAIS, Ms. Lombard has a bachelor’s degree in Political Science and International Studies from the University of Kansas.
Principal, Supply Chain & Manufacturing Operations
Louis is a principal of Deloitte Consulting LLP focused on the manufacturing sector and a leader in the firm’s Supply Chain and Network Operations practice. He is a manufacturing professional with more than 25 years of experience in smart operations and supply chain management. Louis consistently demonstrates the ability to address heart of business operational challenges—executing manufacturing strategies, improving operations, reducing cost, increasing speed to market, and enhancing supply chain performance. His extensive industry and consulting experience includes a wide variety of products and spans work in multiple countries.
Louis has spent most of his career focused on the automotive, aerospace, and industrial products sectors in roles across operations, quality, and complex program management. His area of expertise is the optimization of complex supply chains extending from product development through operations and delivery. He leads Smart Factory efforts at original equipment manufacturers to improve near-term performance and step change transformation across the entire value chain.
Mark E. Klein
Managing Director, Lender Accounts
Export – Import Bank of the United States (EXIM Bank)
Mark is a Managing Director, Lender Accounts with EXIM and works closely with Lenders throughout the United States and promotes EXIM’s product/services that are beneficial both to the banks and their exporting customers. Mark also maintains Regional Director responsibilities and works with exporters, small/medium/large, throughout the Midwest; Primary focus is the KY, OH, MO, and KS markets but also works with companies located throughout the nineteen (19) state territory of the Central Regional Office. Mark has been with EXIM Bank for more than 11 years.
EXIM Bank is the official Export Credit Agency for the U.S. and its mission is to assist in the financing of U.S. goods and services to international markets. In doing so, U.S. exporters increase their export sales and sustain/create U.S. jobs.
Prior to joining EX-IM Bank, Mark was an International Banking Services Specialist for three commercial banks and worked with exporters in Kentucky, Indiana, Ohio, Tennessee, and West Virginia. Mark counseled these exporters on a variety of issues including, but not limited to, Letters of Credit, Foreign Exchange Risk Mitigation and Export Credit Insurance.
Mark is a graduate of the University of Louisville, both undergraduate and MBA, and holds the Certified International Credit Professional (CICP) certification from the FCIB.
Mark currently resides in Louisville, KY.
Marlon W. Johnston
Mr. Johnston is a program manager for Textron Aviation Defense LLC. Additionally, he has extensive and diverse professional experience developed during a USAF military career and within the Kansas academic community as the Aviation Department Head at Kansas State University – Salina, now Kansas State University Polytechnic Campus.
Mr. Johnston entered commercial aviation with the Hawker Beechcraft Corporation and continues his career with Textron Aviation.
Mr. Johnston earned a MS, Aeronautical Sciences, from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University and a BS, Mechanical Design Engineering Technology, from Oklahoma State University.
Cargill Protein & Salt
Global Credit Lead
Pam Doonan joined Cargill in 2002. She currently serves as Global Credit Lead in Cargill Protein & Salt. Cargill Protein & Salt has significant operations in the US & Canada, Central America, China & Southeast Asia and the UK. Protein and Salt processes beef, poultry, value-added meats and egg products to food makers, food service companies and food retailers worldwide. Our salt is used in food, agriculture, water softening and deicing. Cargill has 155,000 employees working every day to nourish the world in a safe, responsible, sustainable way.
Prior to joining Cargill Pam was President and COO of Kansas World Trade Center for 13 years.
Parker Dooly is the current Senior Vice President and Corporate Banking Manager with Bank of Oklahoma Financial (BOKF)
As manager of corporate banking, he leads a team of bankers serving corporations based in western Oklahoma and south-central Kansas. He and his team are responsible for coordinating internal resources to deliver the capabilities of BOK Financial to meet the needs of his clients and prospects including: credit, cash management, leasing, international banking, merchant processing, retirement solutions and more.
Dooly began his career at JPMorgan Chase in the Commercial Bank as a Summer Analyst. Since then, he has worked as an Analyst and Credit Underwriter within the Commercial Bank; in his previous roles, he was primarily responsible for financial analysis, transaction structuring, and risk identification & mitigation within a portfolio of clients across a wide range of industries.
Prior to joining JPMorgan Chase, Dooly worked as a Business Analyst at the Center for Creation of Economic Wealth, an economic development organization that specializes in high-impact projects centered on technology commercialization, social entrepreneurship & innovation, and entrepreneurial support.
Dooly is an active member of the community, serving as a board member of the World Trade Council in Wichita, KS, and the Volunteer Leadership Group at Chase while also holding several leadership roles within his local church.
Dooly has a Bachelor Degree in Business Administration from the University of Oklahoma with emphasis in Finance and International Business. He also is a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) Charterholder.
Vice President - International Sales
Cargill Protein North America
Patrick Binger has been with Cargill the better part of the past 33 years. He joined the Cargill’s red meat subsidiary, then called Excel Corporation, in 1986, following graduation from Northern State University in South Dakota. In 1991, without any export experience, he expanded his responsibilities to join Cargill’s expanding export business.
For the past 12 years, he has continued to lead an international business segment for Cargill’s North America protein business located in Wichita KS. He is optimistic about future export growth, expanding the product mix and finding ways to increase the utilization of the carcass.
While 2021 was a challenging year, Patrick Binger served as chair of the US Meat Export Federation, a nonprofit trade association working to create new opportunities and develop existing international markets for beef, pork, lamb and veal.
Ray Garvey, class of ‘83, is a proud Wichita State grad whose first experience with the World Trade Council was in 1982 as a member of the Directory Committee - meaning all-nighters the days leading up to World Trade Week when Directories were disseminated.
Following an MBA in 2000, Ray learned the ropes of managing the French market with The Grasshopper Company, a world leader in the design and manufacture of commercial grounds maintenance equipment. That role expanded as international business expanded and today he's still with The Grasshopper Company as Export Manager, working directly and indirectly in over 40 international markets.
In 2015 Ray was invited to teach International Marketing as an Adjunct Professor in Friends University's Global MBA Program - a role he cherishes. Ray has served on the board of WTC over the past 10 years and in 2018 was honored with the invitation to serve on the board of Kansas Global Trade Services as well. In 2017 he was appointed by the U.S. Secretary of Commerce to serve for three years on the board of the Mid-America District Export Council. In addition to participating in Toastmasters International and as a guest lecturer in the Masters International Negotiation Program at AIx-Marseille University, Ray and his wife Teresa enjoy travel and the special connection they have with Seattle where their three children have migrated to.
Reid Jackson is a Program Manager and Corporate Development Leader at Spirit AeroSystems. Since joining Spirit, he has held key leadership roles in Business Development, Mergers and Acquisitions (M&A), and Strategy. Most recently, he was responsible for Spirit’s organic and inorganic expansion into regions of Southeast Asia.
Prior to joining Spirit in 2015, Reid spent 10+ years working in the D.C. metro area for Lockheed Martin and Engility (formerly TASC) where he held numerous leadership roles within the Finance and Business Development organizations.
Reid holds an MBA from Newman University (2019), and a BS, Finance from University of Maryland (2005).
Rob Harmon is Managing Director of Syndicated Lending at INTRUST Bank. He has 30+ years of banking experience in financial accounting, bank operations and commercial lending. Rob serves on the board of directors of Goodwill Industries of Kansas, Prairie Homestead Independent Living Center, Visit Wichita Convention and Visitor Bureau and the World Trade Council of Wichita. He is a graduate of Wichita State University, holding degrees in accounting and economics.
Robert Hartsook, JD, EdD, DBA
Bob Hartsook has dedicated his life and career to the advancement of philanthropy through high end fundraising worldwide. He is Chair of Hartsook, one of the world's largest fundraising consulting practices, Chair and President of the Hartsook Institutes for Applied Fundraising Research. Previously he led Wichita State University to the successful conclusion of one of only 30 $100 million campaigns in the country in the 1980's.
Emporia State University honored Bob with their Distinguished Alumni Award; he was selected for the Indiana University Center on Philanthropy “Spirit of Philanthropy” Award; and he received an honorary doctorate of business from Plymouth University, United Kingdom. Bob holds a Bachelor of Arts in Economics, a Master’s Degree in Counseling, a law degree and a Doctorate in Education.
He also is an author of six books, and hundreds of chapters and periodicals. He is a contributor and author for ASR Media, LLC. His newest book, $231 Billion Raised and Counting, was co-authored with Matthew J. Beem and Karin Cox Award.
Bob is also President & CEO of Hartsook Farms and Resorts, LLC, which specializes in Wrightsville Beach property and the SE area of Maine.
Seth Merrell serves as one of two senior quality program managers at the Headquarters Field Operations Directorate (FOD) within the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS). USCIS adjudicates immigration-related applications and petitions. FOD has oversight of 88 field offices and a large service (processing) center. Lawful immigration makes an important contribution to the U.S. economy. Most directly, immigration increases potential economic output by increasing the size of the labor force. Immigrants also contribute to increasing productivity.
Mr. Merrell has expansive corporate and government background with diversity in supply chain (SCM) operations, procurement-buyer/planner, and process reengineering through quality improvement initiatives. His current position is threefold; organizational performance and analysis (KPI's, etc.), quality program management, and quality project guidance. This includes procedures with production and supply chain functionality as inventory flows through the system.
A New York native, Seth relocated to Wichita and retired from the U.S. military. Before his service in the Armed Forces, his background includes work with his family business in fine jewelry manufacturing and importing and wholesaling of wine and beer. He was instrumental in importing one of the first beers from Spain into the United States. After the military, he spent several years in the aircraft industry (conducting spares engineering reviews, price-cost analysis, and SCM project management) and teaching as an adjunct instructor before becoming employed in the Federal civil service. Seth is also engaged in private business with rental properties and home remodeling.
Mr. Merrell is currently a DBA doctoral student. He earned an MBA from Webster University, an M.S. Ed from Newman University, and a BS HRM from Friends University. He also has three associate degrees in Information Systems Technology, Personnel Administration, and Allied health Sciences. In addition, Seth holds Six-Sigma Master Black-Belt, program management, and supply chain certifications. Additionally, Seth is President of the Mid Kansas Jewish Federation and is a United States Global Leadership Coalition (USGLC) Advisory Council member.
Shawn D. Sullivan
Shawn, Executive VP Tax Services, has been with Allen, Gibbs & Houlik, L.C. for over 25 years. He is an International and Corporate Tax Services Advisor and has earned the prestigious U.S. International Tax: Inbound and Outbound Transactions Certification.
He performs Business and tax consulting, is responsible for management of specialty services which consists of Cost Segregation Studies, IC-DISC, International tax consulting, R&D Tax Credit Studies, IPIC LIFO inventory and Kansas High Performance Incentive Plan credits. He also is an Industry expertise in Automobile Dealerships, Manufacturing, Retail and Wholesale Distribution, Construction, and Medical. He primarily works with companies with revenues of $10m to $400m.
Shawn is also a graduate of Wichita State University.
Tammy Nolan Porazka
As Vice President of Economic Development, Greater Wichita Partnership, Tammy leads the outreach marketing events for the Partnership. With more than 20 years of advertising and marketing experience working with local agencies and corporate headquarters, she is poised to introduce businesses, both domestic and abroad, to all that our region has to offer. Tammy graduated from Wichita State University with a degree in journalism with an emphasis in marketing and minor in psychology. She is a 2004 Wichita Business Journal “40 Under 40” honoree.