Amy Selby, Pat Salem, Sean Quinton
Cobb County Chamber of Commerce, IAG Forensics & Valuation, Georgia Trade School
This week we continued our monthly series with Cobb County Chamber of Commerce. Cobb CoC’s Vice President of Marketing & Communications, Amy Selby, sat in with me as we hosted Pat Salem, CPA, CFE, Forensic Accountant, with IAG Forensics & Valuation, and Sean Quinton, Vice President, with Georgia Trade School. Both of these businesses are among the Top 25 Businesses for 2016 for the Cobb County Chamber of Commerce.
Pat Salem joined IAG Forensics in July 2010 as a forensic accountant. She is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE). Pat previously worked in information technology as a software developer for Lockheed Martin for a number of years before she learned about forensic accounting. Intrigued, she set off on a new career, going back to school for an accounting degree. She has a Master of Professional Accountancy (MPA) from Georgia State University, and a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Vermont.
Direct dial: 770.635.1698
The technical chair of the Skills USA Georgia Welding and Fabrication Competition since 2012, Sean Quinton is the Vice President of Georgia Trade School. Mr. Quinton’s career in welding education began in 2008 as the Director of Operations for the Center of Industry and Technology. In this role, Sean was responsible for increasing gross revenues by 152%, increasing net profits by 520% and student enrollment by 215%. A Certified Welding Inspector, Sean oversaw welding operations at CIT to insure quality assurance and to document all tests are conducted in accordance with industry standards. A member of the American Welding Society since 2009, Mr. Quinton has completed contract inspection and welding work for Rockdale Pipeline, McKinney Drilling, Work Installation Design Services and HEMI Systems. Prior to being named the Executive Chair of Skills USA Georgia, Sean served as a judge in the welding and fabrication sections from 2008 to 2012. In 2015 Mr. Quinton was named a National Judge at the Skills USA Welding and Fabrication Championship in Louisville, Kentucky.
With a love for fabrication and motorsports, Mr. Quinton has immersed himself in the welding industry and gets to wake up every day looking forward to what he gets to do! Sean has attended FabTech the trade’s largest convention in each market (Atlanta, Chicago, Las Vegas) that it travels to. At GTS, Sean is responsible for the welding laboratory, welding instruction staff, curriculum and certification testing. Mr. Quinton has also worked on some high profile projects right here in the city of Kennesaw. The Metro areas first whiskey distillery, Lazy Guy commissioned Sean and GTS instructor James Spinner to build their tanks and barrel holders. The Southern Museum of Civil War and Locomotive History, A Smithsonian Affiliate had this combination build stairs for their attractions. Mr. Quinton has also starred in a national commercial for Jackson Safety’s Balder Welding Hood which was filmed at Georgia Trade School. Jackson Safety has also hosted Sean in their booth at FabTech in both the Chicago and Atlanta Markets where he performed welds in front of 25,000 plus convention attendees.
Amy Selby, VP Marketing & Communications, Cobb County Chamber of Commerce
Pat Salem, CPA, CFE, IAG Forensice & Valuation
Sean Quinton, VP CWI, Georgia Trade School
AGLCC, Occasional Occasions, TP Corporate Lodging, Lab Monkey
3rd Tuesday means the AGLCC is with us in studio. Co-hosts, Emma Foulkes and Bruce Logue sat down with Occasional Occasions’ Carlton Brown, TP Corporate Lodging’s Tim Miller, and President of Lab Monkey and new AGLCC President, Jack Kinley.
Emma shared some upcoming events hosted by AGLCC, including the Procurement Expo held 5/23, where entrepreneurs can learn about the procurement process around supplier diversity that, should they obtain certification as LGBTBE’s, can truly help them grow through those supplier relationships.
Carlton Brown has been providing catering services for over 24 years in the Atlanta area. He learned how to cook when he was in his 20’s coming out of the military. He decided to go to culinary school to learn while working in corporate jobs. He explained he was pulled into the catering business somewhat by accident, when a friend asked if he would prepare some food for a party. He was called with inquiries about providing catering services by guests who had attended the event.
From there his business continued to grow by word of mouth and he ultimately decided to leave the corporate world to be a full time caterer running his own business. We talked about how he enjoys the way the catering business flows over the challenges of having a brick and mortar restaurant. Carlton also explained how he had to learn how to market his business and the value of networking, which was aided greatly through his involvement with the AGLCC.
TP Corporate Lodging was founded when Tim Miller purchased the firm and ultimately changed the name after having worked with the company for a number of years. He explained the name was inspired by his childhood goal of having a chain of “TP Inn’s”, named after his name, Timothy Paul. He worked in the hotel business for a period of time and learned of the challenges and stresses around it before going to work in the corporate housing space, where he found he enjoyed the business model.
The company provides executives and other individuals/families who need a nice, furnished home for a period of time that exceeds what a hotel’s cost would reasonably bear. Tim explained that they have housing options that span the range of upper-middle to high end apartment residences, both in-town and in the suburbs, depending on the needs of the clients.
He talked about the fact that this type of housing is frequently utilized by the movie industry, giving him the opportunity to have provided residences for several well-known celebrities. Tim is also an AGLCC member and shared the fact that his experience as a member has also provided relationships that have helped his business grow.
Jack Kinley founded Lab Monkey, a creative consultancy, helping to craft and share a business’s story effectively, primarily with their internal clients across large enterprises. The name was a college nickname he earned in college, working all-nighters in the computer lab. He enjoyed the free-spirited, creative environment of his experience in college working on various projects and thought it would be a name that was both interesting as well as representing the dynamic of his firm.
The company hires high-level executives who are still interested in working. They leverage their experience and credibility to serve the needs of their clients (typically businesses with 1000 employees or more) to effectively identify and share their stories with the employees who work for them to increase engagement and buy-in with the brand.
Jack is also the incoming President for AGLCC and explained his involvement with advancing the AGLCC’s ability to increase awareness of the organization to the community. Having gotten to work so closely with the executives through the process, which was actually done through an engagement with Lab Monkey, he was inspired to become part of the leadership team himself.
Carlton Brown, Owner, Occasional Occasions By Carlton
Tim Miller, President/Owner, TP Corporate Lodging
Jack Kinley, Founder/CEO, Lab Monkey
Emma Foulkes, Managing Partner, Foulkes & Steele Wealth Management
Bruce Logue, Managing Partner, The Corbel Group at Keller Williams
Cobb County Chamber of Commerce
I am pleased to launch a monthly episode featuring the Cobb County Chamber of Commerce and businesses serving the Cobb County business ecosystem. Cobb CC’s Event Manager, Ashley Warner, joined me in the studio and brought with her several cool entrepreneurs, several of them members of the chamber.
Jeff Curtis, of OfficeZilla, came by to talk about how their office supply company combines a personal, relationship-driven focus through their service representatives, with a helpful ecommerce platform through which they conduct their business.
OfficeZilla was founded in 2012 with the belief that the Office Supplies industry was ready for a fun,
flexible and customer-obsessed way of doing business. In fact, OfficeZilla was founded by some of the
original founders of Cold Stone Creamery, Moe’s Southwest Grill and Inc 500 company Flip Flop Shops!
He explained that the “big box” stores only account for ~30% of the office supply market, something I found surprising. Given the remaining potential client base out there, the OfficeZilla folks engage their customers and help them optimize their office supply procurement process to be as efficient and lean as can be to maximize the client’s business.
Georgia Crafted was started by Erin Zwigart and her husband after a growing desire to have a business of their own. After having spent ~13 years working for a marketing firm, she was ready for something new. Erin shared how she and her husband had had numerous conversations about the fact they wanted to start a business but could not decide how they wanted to go about it.
She explained that after a particularly long evening of discussion (and a beverage or two) ~three years ago, they decided they would start a company that focused on selling products from Georgia-based companies. Some digging revealed there were no significant competitors in that niche and so Georgia Crafted was born.
Their ecommerce site provides custom gift baskets and items, all manufactured in Georgia. Erin introduced us to one of her suppliers, Austin and Hunter Johnson, who founded Sinclair’s Sauce, makers of a variety of condiment sauces from homemade recipes Austin developed.
Austin, a recent University of Georgia graduate, began getting into cooking to impress the ladies. (much like my own inspiration that led to me being a foodie) Austin shared how he began experimenting with creating sauces to serve with food he was preparing. As he shared them with people around the dorm, he was getting more and more requests for more.
He ultimately found a cold packing company and began to have it produced in bulk. Austin recruited his younger brother, a junior at Chamblee Charter High School, Hunter, to become Brand Ambassador. While the young men are able to sell a good amount of their product via channels such as Georgia Crafted, they are focusing their efforts on forming relationships with condiment makers and the food industry to provide their sauces as licensed products there.
Beth Summers heads business development for Roam–Galleria, an innovative work space that places emphasis on the look and feel of their shared office facilities and conference rooms. The founders, having done much of their telecommuting at previous jobs in coffee shops, decided they wanted to create a comfortable, visually-inviting space that offered a feel along those lines.
The company has four Atlanta area locations and offers a range of options for the small business or executives who work remotely but want to have access to an office space, meeting room, or conference space. They provide reception and access to all amenities one would expect in a well-appointed office.
Ashley Warner, Events Manager, Cobb County Chamber of Commerce
Jeff Curtis, Principal, OfficeZilla
Erin Zwigart, Founder, Georgia Crafted
Austin Johnson, Founder, Sinclair’s Sauce
Hunter Johnson, Brand Ambassador, Sinclair’s Sauce
Beth Summers, Director of Corporate Sales, Roam–Galleria
I recently hosted Susanne Baugh, of Q&A Events on Midtown Business Radio. As we got to talking, she mentioned that I should meet Emma Foulkes, Presidnt of the Atlanta Gay Lesbian Chamber of Commerce. Because the respective missions of the chambers of commerce and Business Radio X have such overlap in the business environments we serve, I was pleased to reach out to her.
As the AGLCC’s website explains, “The AGLCC exists to promote the economic growth and advancement of our LGBT and allied business members, our non-profit organizational members as well as our corporate partners and their employees, through advocacy, leadership, education and support.”
When not overseeing AGLCC activities, Emma is Managing Partner at Commonwealth Business & Retirement Services. She’s a Certified Financial Planner, and has been advising entrepreneurs and high income earners in the Atlanta area since 2001. She provides retirement and business transition planning services in addition to others.
Bruce Logue is Director of Networking for AGLCC, and Managing Partner/Realtor at The Corbel Group at Keller Williams. The firm is comprised of a team of residential real estate specialists who use a unique combination of technology, creative and effective marketing, and tailored customer service to help their clients buy, sell, and invest in real estate. The Corbel Group offers a boutique style approach to real estate services while providing world class results.
Jan Stepp has been in the promotional products business for many years, and is the founder of Pizazzz Promotions. She shared how she takes a consultative approach with her clients to determine who they are trying to reach, the mission of their brand, and makes recommendations for how to best position themselves in front of prospects most effectively. She is also actively involved in AGLCC, hosting the chamber’s Vinings networking events.
Pizazzz is your one stop source for creative advertising specialty, promotional items and printed materials! The company can provide literally any item you can imagine with a logo on it! They have the perfect idea for: customer appreciation, trade show giveaways, sales meetings, grand openings, sales incentives, safety programs, open house, mail enclosures, event promotions, political campaign items, fund raising promotions, banners, table covers, labels, forms, stationary, brochures, holiday gifts, food gift items, non-profit donor gifts, embroidered and screen printed items, cards for any occasion, calendars…if it can be logoed, they have it 🙂
Pizazzz Promotions prides themselves on creative ideas, personal service, competitive pricing and on-time delivery! They work within your guidelines and budget to provide the perfect marketing and promotional items to fit your needs.
Alicyn McLeod is a CPA and Tax Partner with FinLogic, a tax and business advisory firm focused on growing service-based enterprises. She’s an ambassador for the AGLCC as well as a corporate partner. FinLogic employs a forward-thinking approach and their experts focus not just on where your company has been, but rather where you want your company to go.
The firm assists businesses in becoming more profitable, more streamlined and helps them resolve technical issues associated with financial reporting, taxation, debt acquisition and capital acquisition strategies. Whether you are in the process of starting your own business, selling your business or are somewhere in between, the professionals at FinLogic have the experience you need to navigate the issues faced in today’s business world.
David Olt is a doctor of chiropractic and the clinical director of Integrated Chiropractic Center, a Buckhead‐Atlanta practice he founded in 2000. A Georgia‐licensed chiropractor certified by the National Board of Chiropractic Examiners, Dr. Olt has been in practice for 21 years. He has provided pain and wellness care to thousands of patients.
He applies an integrated approach to pain care and health care that combines the effectiveness of several disciplines to support “whole person” care including chiropractic care, spinal and postural screening, corrective exercise instruction, nutritional counseling and massage therapy. His practice offers a one‐to‐one approach to spine and extremity pain relief that is non‐surgical, non‐pharmaceutical and focused on long‐term health and wellness.
Dr. Olt is a frequent speaker at lunch and learns and hosts the AGLCC Buckhead business builder luncheon. He has earned recognition for chiropractic care (Top 10 Chiropractors in Atlanta) and for business and community involvement (Four Avenues of Service, AGLCC Member of the Year 2014). Dr. Olt also serves as an examiner for the Chiropractic National Boards.
Emma Foulkes, Managing Partner, Commonwealth Business & Retirement Services
- BA, Information Systems, University of Phoenix–San Diego
- Executive Program in Financial Planning, University of Georgia
- Atlanta Business Chronicle/NAIFA – Top Female Financial Advisor in Atlanta, 2013 & 2014
- Advocacy Chair, Financial Planning Association of Georgia
Bruce Logue, Managing Partner, The Corbel Group at Keller Williams
- Previous Fulfillment Account Manager, Palm Coast Data
- Former Methods/Procedures Training Manager, AT&T/CitiBank Universal Card Services
- Previous Graphic Designer, Westinghouse Electric Company
- Active volunteer, Atlanta Pet Rescue and Adoption
Jan Stepp, President/Founder, Pizazzz Promotions
- Former Board of Directors, Atlanta Gay Lesbian Chamber of Commerce
- Previous Sales Account Manager, Freight Forwarders
- Former VP Sales/Marketing, Gunold & Stickma
- CPA, University of Georgia
- Previous Tax Manager, Moore Colson
- Former Tax Senior, Bennett Thrasher
David Olt, DC, Integrated Chiropractic Center
- DC, Life University
- BS, Marketing & Management, Miami University