Don is a native Minnesotan and "empty nester" who recently settled in Buffalo, NY with his wife, Missy, to be closer to family and enjoy life on Grand Island with their golden retriever and springer spaniel. Don and Missy have three children in college, two at Georgia Tech and one at Trinity College.
Don's career has spanned a number of industries with a variety of companies both big and small. After investment banking, syndicate and institutional equity sales, Don founded Deephaven Financial Group, where he led investor relations efforts for numerous companies. He later moved into the movie business with Regal Entertainment Group, to a stock loyalty start-up, Loyal 3 and to Zep, Inc., a specialty chemical company. More recently, Don has led business development efforts for a specialty chemical distributor and two companies engaged in the field of artificial intelligence.
Don enjoys giving back by mentoring aspiring entrepreneurs through local incubators & accelerators. He mentored at the ATDC in Atlanta (the oldest incubator in the U.S.) and recenly began mentoring for LaunchNY in Buffalo. He's also a member of the Western New York Venture Association and Buffalo Angels. He's especially skilled at the LEAN start-up method and facilitating & implementing LEAN processes to drive enhanced efficiency.
In his spare time, Don enjoys skiing, golf, water-skiing, trap shooting, mountain biking, fishing & photography. He can also throw a mean Frisbee.
Favorite Movie: Miracle
Favorite Meal: Cinnamon & cayenne encrusted pork loin
Fun Fact: Don recently ran and sold one of the oldest KFC franchises in existence. Don's father and grandfather were the first KFC franchisees in Minnesota (and the upper Midwest) - spanning 58 years.
Charlie was born and raised in Buffalo, NY married to Jo Ann of 47 years, they have two children and four grandchildren. In addition they have two grand-dogs that are dropped off at there house from time to time. Charlie & Jo Ann's daughter is a Regional Sales Manager for a large corporation and their son owns a business in the WNY area.
Charlie's career has been in the Transportation Industry with a variety of companies both big and small. Charlie learned early in his career that persistence pays off. You need to be persistent but not pushy. Follow up on customer needs and provide them with solutions and you will have a successful career.
Charlie, up until recently, was a First Responder for the Clarence Center Volunteer Fire Department. He enjoys giving back and helping others in need.
After graduating from school, he worked in the emergency room at a local hospital and thought he might have a career in medicine.
In his spare time, Charlie enjoys being with his grand kids, (Family First) golf, Going to Bills & Sabre games and bike riding. In addition Charlie enjoys fishing in his backyard and going to Niagara Falls and walking the parkway.
Favorite Movie: Remember the Titans
Favorite Meal: Porterhouse Steak with Crab Legs
Fun Fact: Charlie has won may awards at Roadway Express & at Panther Expedite. When he reflects on his career through the years, he says its just beginning.
Danette was born and raised in Buffalo, NY. She is happily married with two children and three dogs. Danette is a graduate of Buffalo State College and has been in the transportation & logistics industry for over 15 years with a passion for customer service.
In her spare time, Danette enjoys traveling and hosting gatherings for family & friends.
Favorite Movie: A League of Their Own
Favorite Meal: Chicken Wings
Jake is a native of Buffalo and a graduate of the University at Buffalo. Jake's expertise is built from achievement in a number of different roles within the logistics and supply chain industry. Jake's greatest passion has always been operations.
Jake cherishes customer relationships and takes pride in ensuring all parties are left satisfied.
Jake enjoys his Buffalo Bill’s season tickets, going to the occasional Buffalo Sabre’s game, spending time with friends and family, and embracing Buffalo culture and cuisine.
Favorite Movie: Goodfellas
Favorite Meal: Salad Nicoise
Mike was Born and raised in Elmira, NY in which his family still resides. Mike graduated from The University at Buffalo and after a great college experience, he decided that Buffalo was the city for him. He recently adopted a potcake rescue puppy from the Bahamas which he is raising with his girlfriend.
Mike has worked a variety of jobs within the Health and Human service field and has worked with a large spectrum of people in an assortment of challenging settings. After landing his first sales position, he quickly realized that his expertise in conversing and building relationships with people would be utilized to the max with a career focus on inside sales.
Mike is a die-hard New York Yankee’s and Dallas Cowboy’s fan and enjoys both watching and attending games when he can. In his spare time, he enjoys working out, traveling and working in the yard.
Favorite Movie: The Dark Knight
Favorite Meal: Cheeseburger and Fries