Meet the Featured Presenters
Stu directs Bridgestone Retail Operations, LLC (BSRO)—a $4 billion business unit of Bridgestone Americas—and has leadership oversight of operations for more than 2,000 company-owned tire and automotive service centers across the United States; in the field organization; and at the corporate Store Support Center location. He also works to ensure collaboration, integration and strategic alignment between BSRO and the Bridgestone Americas group.
Stu has 30 years of experience in the automotive retail business. He previously served as President of Jiffy Lube International, overseeing more than 2,100 franchised service centers serving approximately 22 million customers annually throughout North America. He held numerous other leadership roles with Shell during his 13-year tenure. Prior to joining Shell, Stu worked for Texaco Inc., serving in various marketing and retail capacities.
He earned a bachelor’s degree in Marketing from the University of Tulsa, where he attended on a full football scholarship before spending three years as a professional place kicker in the NFL and USFL.
Don Germano joined Follett in 2013 as the President of the Follett Higher Education Group. FHEG delivers physical and digital learning materials and retail services to more than 1,000 college campuses across the United States and Canada. As President, Don is responsible for the management of the campus stores and online retailing businesses, as well as the B2C e-commerce and textbook wholesale businesses.
Don came to Follett from Dick's Sporting Goods Inc. where he served as the Senior Vice President of Operations. Prior to that, he was Senior Vice President and General Manager for Kmart Holding Corporation where he was responsible for the financial performance, operations and management of Kmart's 1,350 stores. Don holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the United States Naval Academy and an M.B.A. from Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management. He was also an officer in the United States Marine Corps.
Kristin founded Rethreaded, a Jacksonville-based apparel company, to provide women previously trapped in the illegal sex trade a safe haven. By forming relationships with women on the street and making prison visits, she knew the biggest need was for a safe, supportive work environment where these women could earn money while learning a skill and experience continued healing through community. Rethreaded, which makes scarves, necklaces, bracelets and related apparel, has directly helped 20 area women, and provided over 10,000 hours of work to women in Jacksonville. In 2012 Rethreaded was the overall winner of One Spark. In 2015, Kristin was awarded the "40 under 40" up and coming business leaders in Jacksonville, and was chosen as one of Girls Inc. "Women of Vision" awards.
Steve has served as the Chief Executive Officer of Beall’s, Inc., since 2006. He joined Beall’s in 1984 as Director of Finance, and advanced through a number of leadership roles before being promoted to his current position.
Prior to his arrival at Beall’s, Steve was a Certified Public Accountant at KMPG, a global accounting and auditing firm. He joined KPMG after earning a bachelor’s degree in business from the University of Florida in 1977.
Steve serves on the Boards of Publix Super Markets, Inc., the National Retail Federation, the Florida Council of 100, and was recently named Chair of the Board for the Florida Chamber of Commerce. He is also a member of the Southwest Region Advisory Board for SunTrust Bank, and is Director Emeritus of the Palmetto Youth Center in Palmetto, Fla.
With more than 20 years in retail and multi-cultural marketing, Karina has worked with national and international corporations abroad and in the U.S. Her global perspective has led to a solid performance history of successfully developing marketing strategies that bridge the gap between retailer and consumer.
After earning her MBA from the University of Dallas, Karina joined Senn-Delaney, a unit of Arthur Andersen Latin America, where she specialized in retail business consulting. She later founded Comercio Competitivo, where she worked with various retailers and retail associations in Latin-American. Currently, she helps international businesses to enter into the US market with a strategic marketing approach.
She has written articles for industry publications such as Punto de Venta, Top Shopping, and Supermercados. As an academic, she is an Associated Fellow at the David Miller Center for Retailing Education and Research at the University of Florida’s Warrington College of Business, and a Retail Instructor for the National Retail Federation Foundation Certification Program with Miami Dade College.
Rebecca directs all aspects of human resources strategy, and programs and policies for Southeastern Grocers, the nation’s fifth-largest grocery retailer based on store count. Her responsibilities include talent acquisition, talent management, organizational development, training, leadership development, diversity platform, employee relations, compensation and benefits.
Rebecca, who joined Southeastern Grocers in 2014, has held senior positions at highly branded and global companies including Executive Vice President of Human Resources at Clear Channel Radio, Divisional Vice President of Human Resources at Starbucks and Director of Human Resources at Victoria’s Secret. Most recently, she served as Chief Human Resources Officer at Hooters of America, LLC.
Sinclair received a Masters of Business Administration in international management from the University of Texas at Arlington; a graduate certificate in Asian business studies from Tongji University, in Shanghai, China; and a Bachelor of Arts degree in communications from Iowa State University.
Jeff joined Geoscape, which offers self-service, data-rich online systems and full-service analytics and consulting services, in February 2015 after many successful years in the radio broadcasting industry.
Prior to joining Geoscape, Jeff was the General Sales Manager at WHKQ-FM, a bilingual Spanish radio station in Orlando. He has previously served as President of J Stein Enterprises, National Sales Manager at Davidson Media Group and Vice President of Sales at Mega Communications among other positions.
Jeff is a graduate of Miami University in Oxford, Ohio, where he studied Political Science & Radio/TV.
Anne Marie leads KWOLIA, which provides strategic advisory for emerging technologies applied in retail, connecting the physical and digital worlds. As a global customer-focused product and service developer, customer experience guru and trends forecaster in retail, she has worked with leading companies, including Panasonic, Disney, Chico’s, AutoZone, Ralph Lauren, Hickory Farms and Macerich.
She is Founder of Smart Women in Retail Leadership (SWIRL); President, Location Based Marketing Association (LBMA) Chicago; Mentor at tech accelerators: Plug and Play Brand and Retail Center of Innovation Silicon Valley, RevTech in Dallas and 1871 in Chicago.
Anne Marie is a graduate of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Read has more than 30 years of experience in retail loss prevention, and has worked with the world’s top retail organizations.
He is a Director of the industry group Loss Prevention Research Council (LPRC), which was founded by 10 major retail chains in 2000 to help them improve their loss prevention results using scientific research. Today, the LPRC includes over 95 major corporate members (45 retail chains) working together with scientists in 11 working groups on significant crime and loss control issues. LPRC members include Bloomingdales, Home Depot, Target, Walgreens, Big Lots, P&G, Louis Vuitton, Dollar General, Publix, Office Depot, Macy’s, Best Buy, Kroger, Lowes, CVS, eBay, and AutoZone.
Read also co-founded the University of Florida’s globally used National Retail Security Survey in 1989, and has conducted over 85 crime control research projects.
Read has spoken at more than 100 conferences, and is the author of more than 20 peer-reviewed journal articles, 150 magazine articles, and four top-selling books.
Recognizing a trend in 2002 that retailers were increasing their expectations of the supplier base, Jim founded ERS to help improve the retail business acumen of suppliers. Over the last decade ERS has vastly improved the decision-making capability of retailers, suppliers and licensors enabling them to increase their sales, profit and inventory productivity. As a former Buyer at JCPenney he managed or bought key categories in Men’s, Children’s and Home Textiles throughout his 15-year career. He was honored several times with executive level projects and sat on varying key company initiative task forces. Jim has been featured in Apparel, Home Textiles and Licensing publications including License! and has conducted seminars at industry associations and trade shows including NEECOM, VCF, The Licensing Show and MAGIC.
An eclectic technologist, Laura has worked in numerous Technology positions at Chico's since April 2003, specializing in the areas of Digital Commerce, Marketing, Product Development, Sourcing, Logistics, Planning & Allocation, Finance & Inventory Management, Human Resources, Real Estate, and Business Intelligence. Prior to joining Chico's, Laura excelled as an ERP Implementation Specialist in the healthcare industry. Laura obtained her Bachelor of Science degree in Decision and Information Sciences at the University of Florida. She is an avid presenter of technology and business content to the retail community. Laura is also a graduate of the Greater Fort Myers Chamber of Commerce Emerging Leaders Program. Board affiliations include the Southwest Florida Technology Partnership and the Center for Supply Chain Board of Advisors at the University of Florida.
Dan formed Trinity Commercial Group Inc., an industry leader in the retail real estate market, in 2011. The firm has set new standards with innovative approaches to client services through collaborative teamwork, and represents some of the top retailers, developers, investors and landlords in the market. Among the entities Dan represents are Florida Community Bank, SunTrust, Ameritrade and Tijuana Flats. Prior to his time at Trinity, Dan spent a combined six years at CBRE and Naples Realty Services, Inc., providing expert advice and leadership in southwest Florida's commercial real estate brokerage industry. Dan earned a B.S. in Economics from the University of Michigan in 2003.