Dean’s Community Advisory Board
Dean’s Community Advisory Board
The Dean's Community Advisory Board is comprised of several accomplished and impactful leaders in the Pikes Peak Region. They dedicate their time and expertise to advise the Dean of key strategic initiatives surrounding the College of Business. Many of the advisory boards are alumni and longstanding partners with the university.
Dean’s Community Advisory Board Members
Vice President, Ecolab
Tom Arata is vice president of Global Technology Platforms within the Research, Development & Engineering (RD&E) function of Ecolab Inc., the global leader in water, hygiene and energy technologies and services that protect people and vital resources. With 2017 sales of $13.8 billion and 47,000 associates, Ecolab delivers comprehensive solutions and on-site service to promote safe food, maintain clean environments, optimize water and energy use and improve operational efficiencies for customers in the food, healthcare, energy, hospitality and industrial markets in more than 170 countries around the world.
In his current role, Arata is the commercial leader driving enterprise innovation through platform technology development, technology scouting and partnerships, and food safety and public health programs.
Prior to joining Ecolab in 1997, Arata worked in the medical and specialty chemicals industries. He held senior business leadership roles with BOC Gases, as well as sales leadership in the clinical diagnostics division of Baxter Healthcare.
Arata is a United States Air Force veteran who served on active duty for several years as an instructor pilot. Arata serves as chair of the board of directors of Catholic Charities of St. Paul and Minneapolis, the Executive Advisory Board for the College of Business at the University of Colorado-Colorado Springs, a mentor to startup businesses through Techstars, as well as an executive mentor in the Menttium program.
Arata holds a bachelor’s degree in Biology from the United States Air Force Academy and a master’s degree in Business Administration from the University of Colorado-Colorado Springs
CEO, Colorado Springs Utilities
am Benyamin joined Colorado Springs Utilities in 2015 as the general manager of energy supply and was named CEO in October of 2018. Prior to joining Colorado Springs Utilities, Benyamin was the Senior Assistant General Manager, head of the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power’s (LADWP) power system, the nation’s largest municipal utility. At LADWP, Benyamin was responsible for 4,000 employees with an annual budget of $3.9 billion, serving more than four million residents of Los Angeles.
Benyamin is a Professional Engineer with a bachelor’s of science degree in engineering from California State University, Los Angeles. He also has a master’s degree in business administration (MBA) from the University of La Verne and a master’s degree in public of administration (MPA) from California State University, Northridge.
He has also earned the following certificates:
- Senior Executives in State and Local Government, Harvard University, Kennedy School of Government
- Executive Business Management Program, University of California Los Angeles (UCLA), Anderson School of Management
- Engineering and Technical Management, UCLA
- Business Management Program, UCLA
- Leadership for the 21st Century, UCLA
- Total Quality Management, UCLA
- Construction Management, UCLA.
Benyamin’s current and past board member and trustee affiliations include YMCA Downtown Colorado Springs Board Member, Armenian General Benevolent Union, Worldwide District Committee Board Member, Boys and Girls Scouts commissioner, troop committee member and volunteer, Trustee of Joint Safety and Training Institutes, Southern California Public Power Association board member, Large Public Power Council board member and California Municipal Utilities Association board member.
Chief Financial Officer, Valimail
Robert has nearly three decades of experience working with over a dozen technology companies. He has built the entire G&A function multiple times, advised startups from infancy, overseen a range of financing rounds as well as seeing firms through successful acquisitions four times, most recently VMware’s $375 million acquisition of Wavefront.
Tax Manager, Stockman Kast Ryan + Company.
A transplant from California, Danielle Gaffney graduated with her Bachelor’s from the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs in 2013 and her Master's in Taxation from North Eastern University in 2019. Danielle currently serves as Tax Manager with Stockman Kast Ryan + Company (SKR+CO), an accounting firm in Colorado Springs, and has been in public accounting since 2013. She primarily works with small to medium-sized businesses, partnerships, and specializes in real estate, medical practices, and financial institutions.
Danielle is a member of the Southern Colorado Women’s Chamber of Commerce, serves as Treasurer on the board of directors for the Colorado Springs Rising Professionals, and is on the Finance Committee for the Colorado Springs Pioneers Museum. She is a graduate of Leadership Pikes Peak LNOW! class of 2019, and a recent recipient of the Colorado Springs Business Journal Rising Star award. Additionally, she volunteers her time as an Advisor to the collegiate chapter of Pi Beta Phi at UCCS.
In her spare time, Danielle enjoys biking, exploring the new restaurants/attractions in Downtown Colorado Springs, and spending time with her dogs and husband.
Chief Economic Development Officer, Colorado Springs Chamber & EDC
Cecilia Harry is the Chief Economic Development Officer of the Colorado Springs Chamber & EDC, the largest economic development, chamber of commerce, and business advocacy organization in southern Colorado.
As Chief Economic Development Officer, Harry leads the organization’s economic development mission to attract, expand, and retain top business in Colorado Springs. She and her team develop and implement strategies that will support local businesses to improve the local economy, recruit employers, and execute workforce initiatives.
Prior to joining the Colorado Springs Chamber & EDC, Harry was the first president & CEO of Envision Greater Fond du Lac, Inc. (Wisconsin), and her economic development experience also spans the Greater Omaha, Nebraska region, Kansas City, Kan., and St. Louis.
Harry earned her certified economic developer designation in 2015. She currently serves on the board of directors of the International Economic Development Council (IEDC) and the Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives (ACCE). She obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology from the University of Notre Dame and a Master of Social Work degree in Social and Economic Development at Washington University in St. Louis.
Harry and her husband enjoy spending time with their two young children.
Chairman, Dean's Community Advisory Board
CEO/Founder, Borealis Fat Bikes
Born and raised in Milwaukee, WI – Steve grew up competitively sailing around the Midwest.
Steve went to Colorado College and transferred to Pepperdine to finish a degree in Economics.
Upon graduation Steve entered the world of printing and packaging where he would spend the next 15 years working for the industry until 2001 when he and a group of investors started the company Oracle Packaging. From 2001 until 2008, Oracle grew to $135 million in sales with 950 employees. After Oracle, Steve held the position of V.P. of Sales & Marketing for Chromatic Technologies (CTI) as well as being a major investor in CTI. After stock redemption in 2012 and a year off to spend time with the family, Steve started teaching the Entrepreneurial Class at Colorado College. While at Colorado College, Steve was Director of Innovation and Entrepreneurism and developed the Big Idea for CC. During the Big Idea, Steve met a student who worked in the Fatbike industry and test rode a much heavier and less agile version of what Borealis produces today.
Kaczmarek formed Borealis Fat Bikes in 2013 by utilizing his track record of successful start-ups to implement operational procedures that drove the Colorado Springs-based company through exponential growth during the first two years. “Fat bikes are the hottest thing on two wheels, and Borealis is thrilled to be a leader in this category.” Our goal is to produce the lightest, most technically advanced fat bike products while offering our customers the best service, best price and largest inventory for all their fat bike needs.
Steve is an avid outdoorsman and grew up in the competitive sailing arena where the lightest, fastest designs and products were demanded. After moving to Colorado where large bodies of water are hard to find, Steve identified mountain biking as his preferred activity. Just following Steve’s first Fatbike ride, he was able to combine mountain biking with his extreme understanding of carbon fiber and exotic materials from sailing into what is now recognized as the World Leader in Fatbike Technology.
Attorney, Miles & Stockbridge
Eric G. King is a registered patent attorney experienced in multiple technical fields, including electrical and electronic systems, telecommunications, computers and computer systems, microprocessors, microcontrollers, power electronics, wireless technologies, spread spectrum radio, software and computer-related inventions, artificial intelligence, robotics and financial services.
He represents domestic and foreign companies in matters involving patent preparation, acquisition, enforcement, and prosecution as well as trademarks, copyrights, licensing and other business matters that arise in those technical fields.
Eric has more than thirteen years of industry experience in engineering and management positions in the wireless and defense industries including Omnipoint Technologies, Inc., Loral Command and Control Systems, and Rockwell International.
Retired, Real Estate
Becky is a retired entrepreneur with executive level experience in marketing and technology enterprises. She most recently was COO and President of RCSPros, LLC, a web-based electronic health record (EHR) company for senior housing. RCSPros sold in 2014, and Becky remains active in the community.
In addition to serving as the Chair of the UCCS College of Business Strategic Development Board, she is a Director on the University of Colorado Foundation, and a trustee on the Theatreworks Advisory Board. Becky is a member of the UCCS Ambassadors, and the Ent Center for the Arts Advisory Council. She serves as a trustee on the Penrose-St. Francis Board and a member of the President’s Advisory Council at Pikes Peak Community College.
Becky completed her undergraduate degree at the University of Colorado at Boulder and received an MBA from UCCS.
Becky and her husband Jon Medved, retired CEO, enjoy traveling, hiking, theatre, skiing and spending time with friends and family, especially their two children, J.P. who lives in DC and Katie living in Denver.
Vice President Strategy, Centura Health
Michael is a seasoned and transformative health care executive with 25+ years of success inspiring teams and boosting performance through people-focused hospital administration. He has a history of leading healthcare organizations through dynamic environments and positioning for long-term success. Michael’s expertise is in building key strategic priorities, facilitating execution, and building high functioning teams. He is a frequent keynote speaker at national level conferences on topics related to population health and clinical integration strategies. He was recognized as one of the top 300 hospital and health system leaders to know by Becker’s Hospital Review.
Michael currently serves as Group Vice President for Strategy with Centura Health where he is responsible for the strategy and business development in the greater Colorado and Kansas markets.
Michael is also the Managing Principal at Durango Health Partners (DHP), a consulting firm specializing in health system transformation in the areas of Population Health, Accountable Care and Clinical Integration Networks.
Michael’s previous experience includes serving as Vice President, Accountable Care and Executive Director for Seattle Children’s Care Network, a 1000 provider, multi-specialty, pediatric CIN). Prior, he served as Senior Vice President of Population Health Strategy at UnityPoint Health, and President and CEO for their ACO, one of the country’s largest ACOs with over 260,000 lives in governmental and commercial, value-base contracts. Previously, he served as the Executive Vice President of Health Networks for Trinity Health, which included responsibility for over 50% of the approximately 9 billion dollars in system revenues.
Michael has also held numerous senior level healthcare executive positions with organizations including Johns Hopkins Medicine, Catholic Health Partners, American Medical International, in addition to serving as President and CEO of a specialty rehabilitation hospital for over 10 years. His career began as a clinical cardiac physiologist working with Lee Memorial Health System in Fort Myers, FL in health promotion, wellness, and disease management, in addition to working within the area of wellness for large corporations including General Foods, and Kimberly Clark.
Michael has an MBA from Xavier University, Cincinnati, Ohio, an MS from University of Wisconsin, and BS from Springfield College. He is Board Certified and a Fellow in Healthcare Administration by the American College of Healthcare Executives (FACHE), Board Certified as a Physician Practice Administrator by the American Medical Group Association (ACMPE) and has post-acute expertise, previously licensed by the State of Colorado as a Nursing Home Administrator.
Chairman, Nunn Construction
Ray founded Nunn Construction in 1983, and continues to serve as the Chairman of the company. Passing the role of president and legacy of quality building projects to his son, Ray continues to remain an active participant in Nunn Construction through mentorship, community engagement and business development.
Ray believes that honesty is the key component to being a successful business owner. This is reflected in the work he has completed over his career. He has strived for a positive reputation in the Colorado Community by providing quality construction management, as well as dedicating his personal time to several community and non-profit organizations.
Currently, Ray’s professional and community involvement includes: The Colorado Springs Chamber and EDC Board of Directors, Associated General Contractors of Colorado Board of Directors, U.S. Bank Community Advisory Board, Pikes Peak Hospice Foundation Board of Trustees and the Salvation Army Advisory Board.
Ray earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Civil Engineering from the University of New Mexico in 1972. In 2016, Ray was awarded the Engineering News Record Mountain States Legacy Award given annually to an individual who has achieved a lifetime legacy of service in design and construction, and who has given above and beyond to their professions and the communities in which they live.
Broker, Salzman Real Estate Services
Prior to his long, distinguished care in the Residential and Relocation Real Estate arena, Harry was an Investment Banker. That background has played an important role in working with his clients, which enables him to find not only the best home but also the best financing for their needs and situations.
In April 2015, Salzman Real Estate Services merged with ERAShields Real Estate in Colorado Springs. This mutual benefit will help promote even better customer service for clients and provide Harry with more time to devote in helping his individual clients find the homes that best fit their needs, wants and budgets.
A member of the National Association of Realtors since 1972 and the Colorado Springs Chamber of Commerce (now the Regional Business Alliance) since 1973, you are assured high quality, ethical service when seeking to buy, sell, invest or relocate.
Past president of the National Relocation Directors Council and a member of Worldwide Employee Relocation Council, Harry is a relocation specialist and understands the need of the entire family when it comes to corporate and individual relocation.
Harry has achieved every first-place award in the local Real Estate community From Realtor Salesman of the Year to Homebuilders Association Salesman of the year to name a couple. The Peak Producers Group named him as one of the top producers in the Pike’s Peak area and he has remained there ever since.
Former President & COO, Home Advisor
Craig Smith is a fourth-generation Coloradan raised in Colorado Springs with a deep appreciation for his home state. He currently lives in Denver with his wife Amy and three children – Elle (10), Colin (8) and Brendan (6).
Craig graduated Magna Cum Laude from the University of Colorado Colorado Springs in 1997 with a degree in Finance. Craig earned a fellowship with El Pomar Foundation in Colorado Springs where he helped manage the endowment for three years. After completing the Fellowship program, he joined a technology and online marketplace in Denver called ServiceMagic, now branded as HomeAdvisor. In 2017, the company merged with Angie’s List and went public on the NASDAQ under the symbol ANGI. Craig has been at the center of HomeAdvisor’s growth and success, achieving the role of President & COO by age 32. One year later, he was named a Colorado Biz “COO of the Year” finalist and helped earn the company top honors as CTA Technology’s “Company of the Year.” As one of HomeAdvisor’s early executives, Craig was instrumental in building the leading online home improvement marketplace in the world.
In 2020, after two decades of leadership at ANGI, Craig announced he is transitioning from the corporate world to philanthropy. He is energized and excited to focus on his lifelong passion for increasing opportunities for at-risk children and enhancing the neighborhoods where they live and play. Based on his own childhood youth sports experiences, Craig believes deeply that participation in athletics teaches critical life lessons and builds character and resiliency. To that end, he hopes the next 20 years of his career will focus on increasing access to youth basketball and baseball programs -- and supporting children in need --regardless of their economic standing or athletic skill level.
Craig’s roots in the not-for-profit community run deep. In addition to volunteering with several youth sports programs here in Colorado and Florida, he is a founding member of the Colorado Inclusive Economy. In addition, Craig serves at the board or leadership level for several well-known community organizations including the Children’s Hospital Colorado Foundation, A+ Colorado, Rocky Mountain PBS, Employers Council, and Junior Achievement.
Craig was a member of the Colorado Governors Fellowship program and received the first-ever Governor's Citizenship Medal recognizing his professional excellence and positive impact on the Colorado community.
Senior Vice President, Wells Fargo & Company
Gene Sullivan is Senior Vice President for the Wells Fargo Regional Commercial Banking Office in Denver. He leads a team of 25 financial services professionals who serve the financial services needs of businesses with annual revenues $20 million and greater in Colorado, Montana, and Wyoming. Gene and his team provide these businesses with credit, international services, treasury management, investment management, and online services.
Gene has more than 37 years of experience in financial services, all with Wells Fargo. He joined the company’s Commercial Banking group in Denver in 1981. He moved to Boulder in 1992 to manage Business and Executive Banking for the cities of Boulder, Broomfield, Longmont, and Louisville. In 2000, he gained responsibility for Retail Banking and was promoted to Community Banking President. In 2005, Gene was promoted to Regional President for southern Colorado where he managed Business and Retail banking with more than 400 team members at 24 locations. In addition, he managed the Wells Fargo acquisition of Fremont National Bank, which added banking locations in Canon City, Penrose, Pueblo, and Westcliffe. Gene graduated from the University of Colorado-Colorado Springs with a degree in finance.
He has been active in many community organizations along the Front Range of Colorado and presently serves on the Colorado Chamber of Commerce board, the Executive Board of the Boy Scouts Denver Area Council and the Dean’s Executive advisory board of the University of Colorado-Colorado Springs College of Business. Previously Gene served on the boards of the University of Colorado Foundation, YMCA of the Pikes Peak Region, Greater Colorado Springs Chamber of Commerce, Colorado Springs Downtown Partnership, Downtown Boulder Inc. and the Boulder Chamber of Commerce.
Managing Partner, Reliant Construction
Wendel Torres has been in the construction industry for 35 years. He started his first construction company in October 1987. He quickly developed relationships and completed contracts consisting of custom homes and small/medium size private commercial projects. City and county clients along the Front Range of Colorado were also formed prior to entering the Federal Department of Defense sector.
In January 2000, Wendel merged companies with Brad Hix forming Alliance General Contractors, LLC and finally Torix General Contractors. At merger there was a combined staff of 18; in 2007 Torix had 193 employees completing an average of $67 million in construction projects. Torix was purchased in 2007.
He has been involved in national, state, and local boards of directors and committees while receiving recognition for business and volunteering.
President & CEO, More Than Your Money, Inc.
Jane Young is a Certified Financial Planner and President of More than Your Money, Inc. She has been a financial planner since 1996. She is also enrolled to practice before the Internal Revenue Service. Jane provides integrated financial planning including investment management, retirement planning and tax planning and preparation. Jane is also a personal finance columnist with the Colorado Springs Gazette.
Prior to becoming a financial planner Jane held several management positions at Digital Equipment Corporation and Quantum Corporation, where she worked for 14 years. Jane holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from the University of Colorado and an MBA from the University of Colorado.
Jane is very active in the community. She is a past president of the Rotary Club of Colorado Springs and a past president of Leadership Pikes Peak. She is a graduate of the Leadership Pikes Peak class of 2004. She is a past president of the Financial Planning Association of Southern Colorado and a past president of the Pikes Peak Chapter of the National Association of Women Business Owners. Jane is also the past Chairperson of the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs, College of Business, Alumni Leadership Team. Jane is a 2009 graduate of the Leadership Program of the Rockies and a 2011 graduate of the Colorado Springs Leadership Institute.
She currently serves on the Strategic Development Board and the Alumni Leadership Team for the College of Business at UCCS. She also serves on the board of directors for the Colorado Springs Leadership Institute and the Colorado Springs World Affairs Council. She is a member of the Rotary Club of Colorado Springs, the Colorado Springs Estate Planning Council, the Winter Nights Club, the Southern Colorado Women’s Chamber of Commerce, Colorado Springs Women in Action, and the Junior Achievement Elevate Committee. Jane is also active in several financial planning organizations.
Jane was selected as a 2010 Woman of Influence by the Colorado Springs Business Journal and was nominated for the 2014 Athena Award by the Colorado Springs Regional Business Alliance. She also received the Colorado Springs Gazette’s 2014 ‘Best of the Springs’ Silver Award for Best Financial Planner. In 2017 Jane was featured in Living Well magazine as a ‘Woman Who Inspires’.