The Team Leader will manage the overall process for each of the projects they are assigned to. This includes time with the company prior to the project, managing the interaction with the team during the project, and following up with the company after the project. When possible this work will be done in person and should be coordinated with other area economic development and business development professionals. Our Team Leaders have experience running their own companies, exceptional facilitation skills, strong local connections with business development professionals, and a significant background in strategic consulting with growth oriented companies.
Julie is founder of Mustard Seed Marketing, a marketing, product development, and project management firm that offers expertise to grow products, services, and profits in the high-tech and healthcare industries. Prior to that, she held several positions in sales, marketing and global product management at both Dow Chemical and GE. Some of her accomplishments include growing sales in a fiercely competitive environment by expanding distribution channels, leading a 30-member cross-functional team through the commercialization of a flagship product, and directing several product lines with a Japanese joint venture. In addition, she was twice awarded honors for her management/marketing achievements. Julie has an MBA from Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University and a BA in Microbiology from Miami University in Ohio.
Brad Poquette, MBA, is principal of MGMT Consulting LLC in Altoona, Wisconsin. He was a managing owner of PESI Healthcare, a national continuing education company, for 15 years until its sale. In addition to business consulting, he facilitates and teaches the Entrepreneur Training Program for the Small Business Development Center at UW-Eau Claire and the Critical Core Supervisory Skills course for Chippewa Valley Technical College at various campuses. He serves as a team leader for a Business Intelligence Team as part of a collaborative initiative of UW-Extension Madison and the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation, working with second-stage companies to further their growth and success. In addition to his work with start-ups and second-stage companies, Brad has been a mediator for TRY Mediation, the provider of dispute resolution services for Eau Claire County, for more than 17 years.
Jeffrey Russell, co-director of Russell Consulting, Inc., specializes in helping organizations achieve great performance while successfully responding to the challenges of continuous change. With a focus on leadership, strategic thinking, leading change, and performance coaching, Jeff has worked internationally with organizations as diverse as Fortune 500 firms, public and social sector organizations, and small family businesses. Jeff received his Masters in Industrial Relations from the UW-Madison. It is at UW-Madison where he serves as an adjunct faculty member for the Wisconsin Certified Public Manager Program, Small Business Development Center, and School of Engineering. Jeff and his wife and business partner Linda have co-authored nine books. Recent titles include Leading Change Training, Strategic Planning Training, Change Basics, Ultimate Performance Management, Engage Your Workforce, and most recently, Fearless Performance Reviews (McGraw-Hill, 2014).
The Market Research Specialist will interact with client companies virtually by phone and via a web-based collaboration workspace provided by the Center for Business Intelligence and coordinated by the team leader. The market research work done for these types of projects is all secondary research and will not include any primary research. Our Market Research specialists all have access to and familiarity with multiple databases and have extensive experience working with growth oriented business clients to explore new markets, analyze market data and identify important market trends.
Kelly is the founder and co-owner of ResourceAbility, LLC, a consulting business dedicated to helping small businesses grow. Founded in 2005, ResourceAbility has been helping Western Wisconsin businesses and entrepreneurs ever since, with a focus on marketing research, business planning, strategic planning and budget analysis. Kelly also teaches both undergraduate and MBA level Marketing Research classes at UW-Eau Claire. Prior to starting the business, Kelly spent four years teaching Applied Quantitative Methods at UW-Eau Claire. She holds an MBA from UW-Eau Claire and a BA in Applied Mathematics from Drew University. Kelly has experience in the service and manufacturing industries, with a focus on market research, project management and data analysis.
The Digital Marketing Specialist will interact with client companies virtually by phone and via a web-based collaboration workspace provided by the Center for Business Intelligence and coordinated by the team leader. All our Digital Marketing specialists possess expertise and significant experience with business clients focusing on social media, search engine optimization, and various web-marketing tools and techniques. In addition, they have great familiarity with the wide array of existing web marketing and social media tools, as well as a willingness to explore new options and opportunities with client companies.
Sarah is the Marketing Director and Account Manager for DigiSage, Inc, based out of La Crosse, WI. Sarah is passionate about helping businesses succeed, and enjoys leading teams in the development and execution of effective digital marketing and communication strategies. Sarah earned her undergraduate degree in Communications with an emphasis in Public Relations from the University of Wisconsin – La Crosse and has an MBA. Sarah is an avid lifetime learner and enjoys staying up-to-date with current marketing trends and technologies.
Brian Lee, APR, is the president of Revelation PR, Advertising & Social Media, an integrated communications agency he founded in January 2011, as well as a part-time lecturer on social media at Madison Area Technical College. InBusiness Magazine named Brian to its “40 Under 40” list in 2012, and PRSA-Madison named him its 2013 Communicator of the Year.
Linda Pophal, MA, PCM, is owner/CEO of Strategic Communications, LLC, and a marketing and communication strategist with expertise in strategic planning, B2B content marketing, PR/media relations, social media and SEO. Her background as a freelance business journalist, advertising copywriter and corporate communication professional provides the foundation for understanding how to produce and use high-quality, personalized content to inform, motivate and engage audiences. Pophal has experience at the state and national level as a Baldrige Examiner and has advised companies in the energy, education and healthcare industries on strategy and marketing-related issues.
Geographic Information Systems (GIS)
Todd Niedermeyer, GISP, is the Owner/CEO of Geographic Marketing Advantage, LLC in Franklin, WI. For over 20 years, he has provided comprehensive Geographic Information Systems (GIS) services to the private, public and non-profit sectors. Offerings include GIS management, support, installations, training and customized deliverables. He understands the value of spatial analysis and visualization for better business planning. Todd has a Master’s Degree in Urban Planning with emphasis in Urban Geographic Information Systems from UW-Milwaukee.
Interested in a CBI Engagement for your organization? Contact the Institute of Business and Entrepreneurship today to start the qualifying process.
Melissa Meschke is the Economic Development Outreach Manager for the Institute for Business & Entrepreneurship and Project Manager for the Center for Business Intelligence.
Melissa enjoys working with ESOs and EDOs to expand knowledge of and access to the great resources for entrepreneurs all across the state. She discusses capacity building, especially in the rural areas, in addition to marketing strategies to reach and assist entrepreneurs and work to improve Business Retention and Expansion in an area. She also has access to incredible databases and detailed reports that can speak to funders and investors.