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Leslie Kuban: Investigating Franchising? Franchise ownership can be personally, professionally and financially rewarding IF you know what you’re doing

A FranNet consultant since 1999, Leslie Kuban provides education and support to individuals who are interested in owning franchised businesses. Leslie has helped more than 250 people make the transition from corporate life to business ownership, and she credits her personal experience as a franchise owner with giving her the perspective to help clients find the quality of life they want.

Upon graduating from Vanderbilt University, Leslie had already operated family-owned franchises, and she became a franchise owner in 1996. As the operating partner of a Mail Boxes Etc. franchise, Leslie joined the local support team to assist other MBE franchise owners successfully run their businesses. Leslie continues as a franchise owner today as a FranNet franchisee.

According to Leslie, “My role is to provide education on the franchise industry and help you find the right solution to reach your goals. My services are no cost and help you understand the pros and cons of owning a business.”

Leslie received the FranNet Consultant of the Year awards in 2002 and 2004; the FranNet Top Gun Award in 2007; and the Commitment to Excellence award in 2009. When she’s not helping clients find their ideal businesses, Leslie is an active sponsor of the Atlanta Humane Society and Literacy Volunteers of America.

Logic Does Not Apply, Leslie’s latest project, is a blog that looks at counterintuitive lessons in business and life.

Cary Silverstein: Removing Barriers to Entrepreneurial Success .. Strategies for navigating the barriers to entrepreneurial success. The top ten mistakes that young entrepreneurs make that negatively impact their ability to be successful.

Cary Silverstein is the President and CEO of SMA, LLC & The Negotiating Edge. Cary heads a group of four consultants who provide facilitation in the areas of strategic planning, consultative selling, market research, negotiations, and conflict resolution. As a senior professor at DeVry University / Keller Graduate School in Milwaukee and Pewaukee, Cary facilitates classes in a entrepreneurial planning, legal & ethical issues, negotiation skills, and strategic planning.
Cary has had a number of articles in the areas of entrepreneurship, family succession planning, and negotiation published in national periodicals and on the Internet. Cary’s regularly writes on business consulting topics for The BizTimes Milwaukee. Cary has been a consulting partner with HRDQ in King of Prussia, PA, a firm that develops evaluation and training materials in the Human Resource areas. Cary is a member of MMAC’s COSBE Board of Directors and has led COSBE Group 10 for a number of years. Cary is also a Vice President for Management with the Labor Employee Research Association’s Milwaukee chapter. Cary has been a judge in the annual Wisconsin Governor’s Business Plan Contest for the last five years.
Cary holds MBAs from Long Island University’s Arthur T. Roth School of Business in Marketing & Organizational Behavior. Cary also has a BA from the City University of New York, Queens College in Political Science and Industrial Psychology. In addition Cary has been awarded certificates in Advanced Negotiation from Harvard’s Program on Negotiation and in Labor and Employment Law rom Marquette University.

Peggy Brown: Professional Game and Toy Designer, Author and Entrepreneur

Peggy Brown has worked for many of the world’s biggest game and toy companies: as inventor, designer, writer, creative director, consultant, and executive. She started and ran a successful design and development company called Alley Oop, which provided creative services to Hasbro, Mattel, Fisher Price, Tyco, Playmates, and other companies. Having done development work on hundreds of products, including licenses such as Barbie, Warner Brothers, Disney, Sesame Street, McDonald’s and Nickelodeon, Peggy now runs a consulting and development firm and works with toy companies and publishers globally. She is the inventor of dozens of games and author of numerous creative activity books with Random House and Accord/Andrews McMeel publishers

Glenn Carver: “Stand in the Heat – Lessons from Legendary Entrepreneurs on Staying Cool Under Pressure”

“Stand in the Heat – Lessons from Legendary Entrepreneurs on Staying Cool Under Pressure” is the first book in a series by Glenn Carver on staying calm in the face of adversity. Inspired by the publishing phenomenon, Chicken Soup for the Soul, Glenn Carver aspires to create a world-class brand that will be a resource of hope, strategy, humor and results for millions of people struggling in the direction of their dreams.

Glenn is currently employed by Sandler Training, which is a world leader in innovative sales and sales management training. Sandler Training helps high achieving professionals and organizations increase top line revenues by installing transferable and repeatable selling systems.

In February 2010, Glenn was inspired to write his first book on entrepreneurship called “Stand in the Heat – Lessons from Legendary Entrepreneurs on Staying Cool under Pressure”. It is Glenn’s personal mission to empower today’s entrepreneurs with inspiration and strategies for long-term success.

Henry Wischusen: Keys to Successful Commercialization are: Stay Objective, Pay Attention to the Details & Understand the Scale of the Opportunity.

Start From Where You Are (And what you think you know)

Henry Wischusen has spent 45 years in the packaging industry developing packaging and processes (A mercenary inventor). Henry has been awarded over 30 patents during that period. In 2006 he left my corporate job to start his own business Integrated Development. For the last 5 years he have been doing package and product development.

Henry is working with earth friendly materials! Today, “Going Green” is especially important for the enviornment. Working with sustainable materials is extremely important to Henry and retailers as well. Reuse, Reduce, Recycle!
Reducing the amount of packaging materials is something he tries to do for the retailers.

Just this month I have put my first retail product on the market –

Chef Mark Garcia: A Recipe for Business Success Starting with Creativity and Innovation as your Ingredients

”Creativity is coming up with an idea, innovation is getting off your (ass) and doing something about it”.  In today’s business climate it is essential not only to be creative, but you need to have the follow through to continually improve what you are doing, to make a genuine difference, and ultimately increase the value for your customer.

Mark Garcia is the author of How To Become A Rock Star Chef and co-author of Entrepreneurial Insanity in the Restaurant Business.  He is also a highly acclaimed culinary innovator and business consultant. He has evolved from one of the most successful R&D/Concept Development Chefs of his generation, to becoming one of the most sought after branding and development experts in the country. His creative vision and insight into the marketplace helped him to create new food concepts, increase sales and develop business breakthroughs for chefs,

entrepreneurs, and Fortune 500 companies.  He has over 20 years of experience in the Food & Beverage industry, ranging from major resort hotels, causal dining and fine dining restaurants, national chains, food manufacturers, and grocery retailers.  He has held key executive level positions with Fortune 100 companies and has had many of the Fortune 500 companies as consulting clients.  He has a reputation as being an innovative, creative and results driven executive.  Mark has also been engaged in marketing and selling physical products, services and “How To” information online since 1999 and he has been creating and consulting with clients on Internet Marketing since 2005.

Vanessa Lowry: Entrepreneurs and consultants are publishing books as a way to market their business and attract ideal customers. Find out how self-publishing can increase your bottom line.

            Vanessa Lowry is a multi-passionate author, entrepreneur, speaker, graphic designer and marketing consultant.  She leverages nearly 30 years of design and marketing expertise to support book authors who are self-publishing, as well as creatively collaborating with businesses that need assistance connecting to their ideal clients.

            She co-authored the e-book, 30 Days of Gratitude with Dr. Robin Kirby and Carolyn G. Buttram. Download a free copy of this book featuring 30 daily gratitude exercises at  The book is also an example of Vanessa’s design capability.

            Vanessa enjoys working in a collaborative process with other business professionals.  Her second book, “Improv to Improve Your Business: Using the principles of improvisation to foster communication, creativity & innovation,” was launched in January 2011 and is another example of one of her ideas from inspiration to completion.  The concept, assembling the authors, compiling their information, as well as the cover design and interior formatting were done by Vanessa.

            Vanessa loves to learn.  She has a certification as a reflexologist, a certification in Okazaki Restorative Massage, holds the rank of 2nd degree black belt in Karate and an intermediate rank in Jiu Jitsu.

Contact Vanessa:




Alan Urech: The Mindset of a Private Equity Investor or Securing Private Equity Investment made Intelligently!

Mr. Alan W. Urech is Managing Partner and Principal at Stoney River Capital Partners LLC, an Angel-backed consultancy with over 17 direct partners.  Using over 30 years of executive experience growing companies, he and his partners provide senior level business commercialization and exit strategies to rapidly expanding entrepreneurial growth companies.   His support enables Stoney River Capital Partner’s (SRCP) clients to understand and methodically implement resource and team strategies through different business growth stages.

His background includes HBO & Company where he was part of a team that saw the organization’s expansion from an initial start-up of under $3 million to over $180 million dollars in revenue within 12 years.  During this period, Mr. Urech was instrumental in developing very successful healthcare product lines which significantly expanded the Company’s overall growth and profitability.  HBOC was sold in 1998 for US$13.8 Billion to McKesson Corporation, starting their information technology division.  

Mr. Urech is an Instructor in Georgia State University’s J. Mack Robinson College of Business. He instructs multiple Graduate and Undergraduate level programs in entrepreneurship and family business at the Herman J. Russell, Sr.  International Center for Entrepreneurship.  He is also on numerous corporate and non-profit Boards including Blank Stage Productions, TAG Health, MIT Forum (Atlanta) Programs, Georgia State University Health Advisory Board, Digitainment Georgia and the Stage2 Business Accelerator.

His non-profit work includes visioning and expanding St. Vincent de Paul Society (Atlanta) from 2 people in a 1,800 square foot facility with 1 program (direct aid) into over 24 people in a 20,000 square feet facility with multiple programs.  He also worked at the Vatican to help transition the church into having a strong internet presence.







Ron Roach: How to Make Sales With Top Retail Chains

Ron Roach is the Director of Sales – Health & Wellness at Wisconson Pharmacal in Jackson, WI.  Originating from Barbados, Ron came to the U.S. in 1984.  He attended high school in Milwaukee, WI at James Madison.  After high school, he attended the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and earned a BA in Political Science.  Ron has also earned a Paralegal Degree from the Milwaukee Area Technical College.

Ron provides HBA products to the retail industry.  He has been with WI Pharmacal for seven years. 

Ron knows how important it is to build relationships with your clients.  Remember to always make the client aware of what you have to offer and how you will benefit them!  Ron works with several major retailers, such as Walmart, Walgreens, Kroger and Publix, just to name a few.

Laurel Cavalluzzo : Social media is all the rage right now…. use social media as a tool to make great things happen for you!

Laurel lives and breathes all things marketing: market plan development, research, brand identity, messaging, interactive and web media, public relations, customer relationship development, direct marketing campaigns, social media and database and loyalty marketing (just to name a few).

Laurel’s experience stems from the corporate world.  Her career there spanned a wide range of cross-functional roles, not only in the realm of marketing, but also in the areas of sales and business development.  Yet, her true passion came forth during her time as Marketing Director for Speedpass Network, a venture of Exxon Mobil Corporation.  Her creative juices flowed freely as she led teams to create Speedpass’ brand and messaging platform, comprehensive communication plan and its website.

Earlier, Laurel’s roots were formed in the area of database marketing and customer relationship as she developed and sold unique customer loyalty programs for Mobil Oil’s U.S. retail outlets.  Laurel also had a successful career as a Sales Manager and Officer at NationsBank (now Bank of America).

Originally from Virginia, Laurel has an MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania and an undergraduate business degree from Georgetown University.