Indigo Anchor, Management Consulting Firm

Our Team

Hard-working, quirky, smart people who like helping others.

Core Team

Ben Baran - Principal


An accidental academic from The Rock and Roll Capital of the World (Cleveland, Ohio), Ben Baran has been consulting since 2006. A management professor at Cleveland State University, he regales his students with lessons learned from his work with startups to multinational corporations to the military. Ben has been an officer in the U.S. Navy since 2002, with service from the California coast to the Arabian Gulf to Afghanistan in both the active and reserve components. He holds a bachelor's degree in political science and communication from Villanova University, and he earned his master's degree in industrial and organizational psychology and his Ph.D. in organizational science from The University of North Carolina at Charlotte. At home, Ben is an active father to four children. Connect with Ben on LinkedIn


Chris Everett - Principal


Chris Everett, a renaissance man residing in the “Best Town Ever” (Park City, UT) has been consulting for businesses globally since 2011, to include Xerox, Deutsche Bank, and HCA. He has worked with organizations large and small across engineering, project management, software development, and operations. Paralleling Chris' business career he has grown a career in the Army National Guard, currently with the Utah Guard as a Captain. He also deployed to Afghanistan in 2012, where he was awarded the Bronze Star. Chris is an accomplished musician, primarily guitar. He holds a B.A. in Music and a Master of Accountancy (MAcc) from Belmont University. When not traveling the country consulting and helping companies solve problems, Chris enjoys skiing the steep and deep back country and mountain biking.

Connect with Chris on LinkedIn


Tracy Porter - Senior consultant


Tracy Porter is an Assistant Professor for the Department of Management at Cleveland State University. Her research focuses on health care administration, strategic human resources, and a variety of individual differences which drive employees towards success. This research has been published in top academic journals including Health Care Management Review, the Journal of Vocational Behavior, and the Journal of Social Psychology. In addition her scholarship has received several awards including the Best Quantitative Paper, Midwest Academy of Management 2014 and the Best Theory to Practice Paper, Health Care Management Division, Academy of Management 2016. Her research has also been presented at numerous national and international conferences.

Prior to entering academia, Dr. Porter was a health care administrator and consultant specializing in large practice management. She continues working with local organizations in northeastern Ohio and is a member of the Academic Affiliate staff at St. Vincent Charity Medical Center. Dr. Porter holds a B.S. in Human Resource Management from Towson University, an M.S. in Applied Behavioral Science from Johns Hopkins University and, a Ph.D. in Human Resource Development from Regent University. Connect with Tracy on LinkedIn


Kelsey Pytlik - senior consultant


A trailblazing entrepreneur from the Queen City (Cincinnati, Ohio), Kelsey Pytlik is a strategic partner for gender-related leadership development and corporate inclusion strategy. Kelsey guides clients in diversity and inclusion strategy and develops impactful programming for organizations focused on gender equality in the workplace. Kelsey is an adjunct professor in the user experience design program at Kent State, and she is an active participant in endurance events to raise funds for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society through Team in Training. Connect with Kelsey on LinkedIn


Lea Williams - senior consultant

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Lea Williams, a proud caretaker of two greyhounds living in the Queen City (Charlotte, NC), is currently a doctoral candidate at The University of North Carolina at Charlotte, where she is finishing her Ph.D. in organizational science. When she is not researching workplace meetings, Lea is pursuing her passion to blend social science with practical applications in organizations.

Her prior industry experience includes work at Duke Energy, TIAA, and Ingersoll Rand, and consulting with dozens of nonprofit organizations. Lea also holds her master’s degree in industrial and organizational psychology from The University of North Carolina at Charlotte and her bachelor’s degree in psychology from Davidson College.

Connect with Lea on LinkedIn


emma everett - Director of sales & marketing

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Emma Everett heads up everything sales and marketing for Indigo Anchor and its clients. She has over 14 years of experience, mainly in the B2B space serving a number of industries including Staffing, Information Technology, Manufacturing, Healthcare, and Professional Services. In 2005, Emma was in the top 1% of Dell’s consumer sales division and from 2014-2016 helped double a startup’s revenue. While very creative, Emma values measuring results and aligning all creative efforts to a systematic disciplined sales/marketing approach which yields results. In her free time, Emma enjoys spending time outdoors with her two daughters and husband. Connect with Emma on LinkedIn


Scientific Advisory Board

Indigo Anchor also enjoys the support of a vibrant team of scholars who aid in the continual, two-way transfer of ideas and research between academia and industry. 

Steven Rogelberg


Dr. Steven G. Rogelberg has over 100 publications addressing issues such as meetings at work, team effectiveness, leadership, employee  engagement, and organizational research methods. His research was profiled on Public Television, Radio (e.g., NPR, CBC, CBS), Newspapers (e.g., Chicago Tribune; LA Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, London Guardian) and Magazines (e.g., National Geographic, Scientific American Mind). Other awards and honors include being the inaugural winner of the Society of Industrial and Organizational Psychology (SIOP) Humanitarian Award, receiving the SIOP Distinguished Service Award, the Psi Chi Professor of the Year Award and the Master Teacher Award. He is the Editor of the Journal of Business and Psychology and the Talent Management Essentials book series.

Companies for whom he has provided consulting services include: IBM, Family Dollar, Grace Cocoa, Vulcan Materials, VF Corporation, Lonza, TIAA CREF, Procter & Gamble, Brush Wellman, Marathon Ashland Petroleum, Siemens, Gilbarco, and North Highland. He founded and currently directs two large outreach initiatives focusing on nonprofit organization health and effectiveness. Over 200 nonprofits have been served. He has been a visiting scholar and guest speaker at universities and professional associations around the world including: Reykjavik University (Iceland), Hong Kong Baptist University, Peking University (China), The University of Sheffield (England), The University of Zurich (Switzerland), The University of Tel Aviv (Israel), Technion University (Israel), Concordia University (Canada), the University of Vienna (Austria), the University of Mannheim (Germany), BI Norwegian Business School (Norway), and Catholic University of Louvain (Belgium).

Dr. Rogelberg’s book, The Surprising Science of Meetings, was named the #1 leadership book to watch for in 2019 by The Washington Post. Learn more about Steven and his work:


Alison Antes

Dr. Alison Antes is an Assistant Professor of Medicine in the Division of General Medical Sciences in the Department of Internal Medicine at Washington University School of Medicine. She is a Co-Investigator in the Professional and Social Issues Lab where she collaborates on research examining factors that foster and hinder professionalism and integrity in research. Her work has focused largely on ethical decision-making and instruction aimed at promoting professionalism and ethics, and current areas of interest include leadership and management in research. Dr. Antes is also the Assistant Director of the Center for Clinical and Research Ethics where she teaches courses in research ethics and delivers workshops on the responsible conduct of research.

Dr. Antes is an editorial board member of Accountability in Research, and serves as an ad-hoc reviewer for multiple publications such as Science and Engineering Ethics, Ethics and Behavior, and Journal of Empirical Research on Human Research Ethics.

Dr. Antes completed her PhD in Industrial-Organizational Psychology at the University of Oklahoma, where she focused on cognition, ethical decision-making, and the development and evaluation of research ethics training.


Sam Paustian-Underdahl


Dr. Sam Paustian-Underdahl is a professor, researcher, and consultant whose work is dedicated to enhancing employee and organizational well-being and effectiveness. Her research focuses on gender and diversity in organizations, the work-family interface, and leadership, in the context of work and organizations. Her research is published in premier academic journals including the Journal of Applied Psychology (JAP), the Journal of Management (JOM), the Journal of Organizational Behavior (JOB), and the Journal of Occupational and Organizational Psychology (JOOP), among others, and has been presented at international and national conferences.

Additionally, Dr. Paustian-Underdahl served as the assistant editor for the Journal of Business and Psychology (JBP) in 2011, and currently serves on the editorial board for JOM, JBP, and Human Performance, and is an ad-hoc reviewer for JAP, JOB, JOOP, and Human Resources Management. She holds a B.S. in Psychology from the University of Georgia, as well as a M.A. in Industrial-Organizational Psychology and a PhD in Organizational Science from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. She is employed at Florida International University (FIU) as an Assistant Professor of Management, was named a Top Scholar by FIU in 2015, and was awarded Best Professor and Best Course teaching awards by FIU MBA students in 2017 and 2018. She is an Assistant Professor of Management at Florida State University.


Linda Shanock

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Linda Shanock is a Professor of Psychology at UNC Charlotte and a nationally board certified reflexologist. Dr. Shanock has published over 30 articles and has been named one of the top 100 most cited scholars in the field of management.

Throughout her career Dr. Shanock has focused her research on employee well-being, particularly research involving perceived organizational support (POS) because there are a host of positive outcomes when a person feels valued and cared about by one's work organization. Dr. Shanock plans to continue to work in the employee well-being area with future research focusing on the physical and emotional well-being that comes from working for a supportive organization and on intervention studies improve employee wellness.