Meet CEO to CEO
Founder & Principal
Meet Robert Sher
Robert Sher is founding principal of CEO to CEO, a consulting firm of former chief executives that improves the leadership infrastructure of midsized companies seeking to accelerate their performance. He was chief executive of Bentley Publishing Group from 1984 to 2006 and steered the firm to become a leading player in its industry (decorative art publishing).
Robert speaks frequently, and has published extensively on the successful leadership traits and skills of CEOs of midsized companies. He is a regular columnist on Forbes.com, has numerous posts on Harvard Business Review online, Entrepreneur.com and CFO.com. He authored two books, the first book, The Feel of the Deal; How I Built a Company through Acquisitions (1toPonder, 2007) and his newest book, Mighty Midsized Companies; How Leaders Overcome 7 Silent Growth Killers, (Boston: Bibliomotion, Sep. 2014). He also publishes his own newsletter, The CEO Insomnia Factor.
From 1984 to 2006, Robert was CEO and co-founder of Bentley Publishing Group, a privately held firm based in Walnut Creek, Calif. Early in the business, he and his partners identified a gap in the fast-growing market for framed artwork: high-quality yet affordable prints perfect for the decorative market. Sher and his partners bootstrapped the business, but key successes breathed new life and cash flow into the business. He led the acquisitions of four competitors between 1999 and 2004 and left Bentley two years later. The firm merged with Global Arts in 2011 to form Bentley Global Art Group.
Robert received a B.S. degree in business administration from Hayward State University in 1986 (during which he ran a small business), and an MBA degree from St. Mary’s College in 1988, where he was the recipient of the Jack Saloma Award for student citizenship. From 1995 to 2000, he taught MBA and executive MBA courses at St. Mary’s on growing entrepreneurial businesses.
Robert and his wife Renee have two children, Ben and Jessie, and live in Northern California. They love sailing and travel.
Meet Harvey Meier
Harvey A. Meier, PhD, CMC is a highly accomplished Entrepreneur, Consultant, Interim CEO, Board Member, and Author with more than 45 years of success in nearly every industry, but focusing on food and agribusiness, finance, banking, manufacturing, service, distribution, and recruiting. Leveraging extensive M&A and growth experience, Harvey is an invaluable asset for any company that has encountered a period of stagnant or declining revenue or is seeking to acquire companies or needs to restructure their business model for long-term, sustainable growth. His areas of expertise include strategic planning, M&A, team building, and executive coaching, financial management, corporate governance, HR management, startups, market positioning, business development, and process involvement.
In 1971m Harvey founded Harvey A. Meier Co. He works closely with family business owners, corporate directors, CEOs and Boards of Directors to provide creative strategies and solutions to grow and manage their organizations. He also works with clients to develop short and long term business plans, evaluate business opportunities, acquire or start companies, enhance skillsets and expertie, evaluate and improve financial performance, and recruit top talent to build an efficient team.
Since 1989, Harvey has concurrently served as the Founder & Executive Director of the Institute for ANC Director Educations (IADE) and the Cooperative Director Institute (CDI), where he provides guidance on Board governance best practices, strengthening Board and CEO relationships and communication. In addition, he facilitates Board and CEO workshops, retreats, strategic planning sessions, conflict resolution, coaching and mentoring, and how to conduct top management searches to build high-performing teams.
Harvey obtained his PhD in Applied Economics and Finance from The Ohio State University; he attained his MS in Agricultural Economics from the University of Arizona, and he received his BS in Agriculture from Washington State University. In addition to his executive career, Harvey has held Board and Board Advisory positions for privately held companies, the Inland Northwest Society of Consulting Professionals, and the Institute of Management Consultants. He has also been a member of the National Association of Corporate Directors and Rotary Spokane 21.
“You have a strong understand of best practices in governance and leadership that guides your advice to be productive and wold class. You are an outstanding listener, understand group dynamics, as thoughtful questions, and are able to weigh in on making tough decisions. Additionally, you separate the emotion from an issue and focus on what our business needs – but you don’t ignore the power that emotions and culture play in enhancing the Board and CEO partnership.” Testimonial from a Board Chairman, echoed by numerous other Board Clients and CEOs.
Meet Megan Patton
Megan Patton is a business strategist who has been a management consultant, trainer and executive coach for most of her career. She spends her time working with individuals, companies and non-profits to help define and implement strategies that enable peak performance and growth. She looks at the way something is done (process); who is doing the work (people); and whether something should be done at all (strategy). Megan approaches client situations from a perspective of what is working well, measured against company goals, and works hand in hand with her clients to develop workable and positive solutions to improving performance.
Megan worked in a “Big Four” consulting firm for many years and focused on business process reengineering, change management and learning system development. Her clients ranged from large multinational companies to internal constituents.
Prior to her career in management consulting, Megan was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Nepal. Megan received a Bachelor of Arts from Kenyon College, and an MBA in Strategy from the Weatherhead School of Management at Case Western Reserve University. She is a strong believer in lifelong learning, and continues to take classes on a variety of subjects.
Meet Gary Wohl
Gary Wohl, MBA, CPC, is an experienced executive with significant financial, strategic, operational, motivational and effective administrative knowledge. In his more than 25 years of leadership, he has assisted companies in becoming more efficient and productive in addressing client needs, and increasing team effectiveness through streamlined processes, timely interactions and enhanced communication experiences. He brings a strategic perspective to many of the operational issues organizations face. Gary earned his Certified Professional Coach (CPC) credential from the World Coach Institute (WCI), and he follows all the guidelines and ethics of International Coach Federation (ICF).
Gary served as President, Chief Financial Officer, and Chief Operating Officer of a variety of businesses. He has worked for a national construction company, DPR Construction Inc., the international law firms of Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pitman and Morrison Foerster. He was the Executive Director at the founding of the Silicon Valley law firm Gunderson Dettmer and most recently the CFO of the west coast construction management/engineering consulting firm Harris & Associates. Gary’s time on the C Suite provides him with a unique and valuable view of individuals, teams and organizations.
Gary has been on the boards and executive committees for many of the firms he has worked for, as well as leading the Finance and Accounting, Information Technology, Risk Management, Facilities, and Human Resource departments. He has personally experienced the challenges of working in complex organizations and has achieved high levels of performance through leadership and team building with the stakeholders he has interacted with over the years.
Gary’s strength as a coach is working with people to facilitate growth for that individual by uncovering blind spots and developing new patterns of behavior. He helps them explore, grow, expand and develop themselves professionally and personally. He partners with individuals to understand their view of their business and their environment. He does not take things at face value.
Gary holds an MBA from Binhamton University and a BA in Psychology from the University of Buffalo. Gary is involved with several nonprofit organizations. He is a disciplined triathlete and jazz piano player.
Meet Michael Stoyanovich
Michael Stoyanovich is an IT and business executive; a solutions architect, product manager and inbound marketer. Professionally he has filled various roles from CIO to CTO to COO. He has been a part of multiple IT centric startups (ISP, learning management, professional services), midsized private companies (data processing, third party benefits administration) and large public multi-billion dollar enterprises (pharmacy benefit management and health IT).
Highlights of Mr. Stoyanovich’s product experience include architecting, producing, launching and growing an innovative benefits administration system delivered as a SaaS product. His growth experience includes leading the due diligence and negotiation for multiple acquisitions in multiple industries (as part of ‘roll up’ strategies) as well as playing key roles on teams raising tens of millions of dollars from Angel and professional investors. He has scaled teams, their process and technology and underlying infrastructure to support the rapid growth companies he has been a part of. Mr. Stoyanovich’s operational experience includes traditional IT roles and responsibilities (security, risk and compliance, telephony, storage, networking, etc.) as well as leading organizational change efforts (new process, procedures, tools, techniques, technologies, responsibilities and organizations, performance metrics, etc. ).
He has played this role as the designated IT leader, outside consultant or operations executive. He particularly focuses on how IT can make organizations more high performing service delivery operations: focusing on increasing productivity; quality and satisfaction; cost cutting; generating new revenue or exposing data and information to line managers in real time, useful, actionable methods (as if you can’t/don’t measure it, you can’t/don’t manage it).
He is a resident of the San Francisco Bay area with his wife and children and enjoys the abundance of outdoor, cultural and (of course) IT events and activities afforded its residents. He’s grateful for the opportunity to help and assist others and his personal health.
Meet Bruce Calvin
Bruce Calvin works with CEO’s, CFO’s and Executives who need support with HR Integration and HR Intervention matters. On HR integration, he helps existing teams refocus on their goals and end results whether supporting an M&A initiative or helping support teams to refocus on getting their leadership initiatives implemented or executed. On HR intervention, he works confidentially with the executive level of organizations when sensitive HR issues require senior management mentoring/coaching, conflict resolution, outside third party internal investigations, executive transition and other neutral work.
Bruce brings over thirty years of global HR expertise across a wide range of industries including semiconductor, healthcare, financial, aerospace, nonprofit, chemical and transportation. He has worked at both the executive level and as a consultant supporting various sized organizations from Fortune 500 elite to startups, (such as NEC Electronics, ESS Technology, Inc. etc.). He has a clear understanding of how global HR issues, affected by California legal requirements, can affect a company’s bottom line and the importance of helping organizations resolve sensitive employee relations issues quickly with little disruption to the organization.
During Bruce’s last fifteen years in industry, his corporate experience has included roles as Senior VP Corporate Services, VP Human Resources and Administration, Compliance Officer to two Boards (two organizations) and for the last seven years an additional role of officer to his previous corporation.
He earned a B.S. from Troy University, a J.D. from John F Kennedy University and is licensed by the California Bureau of Security and Investigative Services (PI #21406).
Community Engagement Manager
Meet Preety Adams
Preety Adams has served as the Community Engagement Manager at CEO to CEO since June of 2015, with responsibility for marketing programs, social media engagement, thought leadership and event planning. Prior to joining CEO to CEO, she worked as the Marketing Manager for DataSafe, Inc. for 7 years.
Preety’s greatest strengths are her creativity, drive and organization. She thrives on challenges, particularly those that expand the company’s reach and allows her to engage the community.
Preety holds an MBA from University of Phoenix and a BA in English from Mills College . She lives in the Bay Area with her husband and two children. When asked what she does in her free time, she responds with a laugh, “What free time?” She happily keeps busy with family, work, and enjoying a good book whenever she can.
Jan Dare Brown
Meet Jan Dare Brown
Jan has enjoyed a work history as an executive assistant in many diverse industries, ranging from the electrical industry, to biotech, to retail, to integrated marketing. She’s been happily ensconced with CEO to CEO since 2012. In her career, Jan has supported CEOs leading Nasdaq listed companies with hundreds of people, to the leader of a 20 person non-profit and nearly everything in between.
In all her positions, Jan has flourished by getting to know the people she serves, both in her own company and with their clients as well. She is proactive and is still aspiring to read executives’ minds, providing answers even before the requests are made. Making CEOs’ lives easier has been a focus of her career! In her own tongue-in-cheek way, she says that it was her BA in elementary education that gave her the patience and perseverance it sometimes requires.
Years ago, the spouse of her boss at that time pleaded with her to “create order out of chaos” and she has enjoyed the challenge over the decades. She is a thinker and sometimes gets creative in accomplishing what is set before her.
Jan is married to a Presbyterian pastor and with her sunny personality, makes the preacher’s wife position look enviable! She loves music, her flower garden, a good novel at the beach and Valentine’s Day!
Meet Renee Sher
Renee Sher has supported the team at CEO to CEO since February of 2017, and serves as the Executive Assistant for all Principals at the firm. She handles scheduling and any number of other administrative functions, and is a great place to start for anyone unsure of how to get what they need from the CEO to CEO team. Prior to joining CEO to CEO she was the proprietor of S is for Science for ten years.
After graduating San Jose State College with a degree in Molecular Biology and Chemistry, she joined Collagen corporation as a chemist, then worked at Oral B for a number of years in quality assurance. She lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband of 25 years, Robert Sher and is the mother of two grown children, Ben and Jessica Sher. She is an avid knitter and enjoys travel with her family.