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 earned a master's degree in industrial and organizational psychology and a Ph.D. in organizational science from The University of North Carolina at Charlotte.
A Renaissance Man from Music City (Nashville, Tenn.), Chris Everett has been consulting for businesses globally since 2011. An accomplished musician who has developed a refined palate for fine wines and ales, he might be the most creative mind to have ever acquired a master's degree in accounting, which he earned from Belmont University. Chris is also an officer in the Tennessee National Guard who deployed to Afghanistan, where he was awarded the Bronze Star. His business background also includes project management, software development in technology organizations, and an operational background in manufacturing and production management.
Kelsey Pytlik is a freelance User Experience Designer the co-founder and CEO of Gild Collective. Kelsey has an undergraduate degree in Marketing and Interactive Media Studies from Miami University, and Master’s degree in User Experience Design from Kent State University. Kelsey has a background within creative agencies and ecommerce retailers, conducting user research and designing usable interfaces. At Gild Collective, Kelsey guides clients in diversity & inclusion strategy and develops impactful programming for organizations focused on gender equality in the workplace. Kelsey is an adjunct professor in the UXD program at Kent State, and an active participant in endurance events to fundraise for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society through Team in Training.
Matt Larkin is a human resources officer in the U.S. Navy and currently teaches at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, Calif. He was invited to join the Indigo Anchor team as a military fellow, a role in which he facilitates the transfer of knowledge and expertise between the corporate and military sectors. Matt has worked in recruiting, operations and supply chain management, pay and personnel administration, and training. He currently teaches manpower systems analysis courses at the Navy’s Graduate School of Business and Public Policy and decision analysis classes for the Army’s Stability, Security, and development in Complex Operations graduate certificate program. He has also taught for the Defense Resource Management Institute and the Navy’s Center for Executive Education Center. Matt holds a bachelor’s degree in communication from Villanova University and earned his master’s degree in manpower systems analysis from the Naval Postgraduate School and his Master of Business Administration from IESE Business School. Matt earned a certification in health care ethics from the National Catholic Bioethics Center. He is a certified Senior Professional in Human Resources.