I was born in South Dakota where my dad – then an astronomer and physics professor at a small state college – built and operated a contraption that tracked and collected data from solar radiation satellites. He used automotive junk and spare parts to build his tracking antenna and telemetric equipment.
He would climb up into an old metal tractor seat from which he would manually turn a lever that drove a series of pulleys which turned the spiraling antenna toward the coordinates in the heavens where the targeted satellite would be located at a specific time. He would then share his data with the United States solar radiation laboratory in Boulder, Colorado, supplying data that was oftentimes more accurate and complete than the data collected by the government’s state-of-the-art facility. Needless to say, my family was viewed as a little “odd” by the locals and they were not sad to see the “space junk” leave when my dad joined the faculty at Oklahoma State University and we relocated to Oklahoma.
Growing up around this thirst for knowledge, creative problem-solving and can-do spirit has greatly influenced my journey – both personally and professionally.
With a post-graduate degree in accounting and a CPA designation under my belt, I embarked upon a seemingly traditional accounting career . . . until it became non-traditional. After having worked several years in the audit practice of Coopers & Lybrand (now PriceWaterhouseCoopers) and then managing a financial reporting group in an SEC-registered company and then an accounting group within a large privately-held international company, I joined my husband in his company to focus on taking a proprietary software-as-a-service (SaaS) product that he developed to market by attracting private equity investment.
This exposure to entrepreneurs and investors piqued my interest in working for smaller, privately-held companies where my financial acumen and passion for problem-solving made a significant impact. My passion was so strong that I invested a couple of years at i2E, a start-up incubator for high tech companies, where I served as the CFO-in-Residence to all of its start-up companies, preparing them for funding by investors.
I have since served as a financial executive in two impressive privately-held companies, successfully negotiating credit facilities, executing business unit M&A, improving business processes, optimizing accounting organizations, developing financial and target performance reporting systems and providing budgets and forecasts.
I just recently teamed up with the seasoned and talented business advisors at the Corporate Performance Group to focus on strategy execution in organizations with aggressive growth plans. These organizations have a need for predictive financial models that increase their probability for success through a time of financial destabilization – an exciting opportunity to participate with business leaders during a time of intensified problem-solving and can-do spirit!