Dave has a career specialty in helping companies increase the odds of success with new product programs, new businesses and major new growth initiatives in Fortune level corporate, privately held, and venture company settings.
He has worked on initiatives on behalf of dozens of small to mid-sized companies, as well as a number of the most powerful names in business. His work experience has touched many sectors of industry through the years. This includes (but is not limited to) extensive experience in technology, software, business-to-business, bioscience, energy and agriculture.
Dave is the founder of NeuVision Group, a market development firm, Alpha Board – The National Business Leadership Exchange, as well as Alpha Scouts, a firm to place executive leaders inside high growth organizations. Alpha Board is a natural extension of NeuVision Group, established as an executive board and leadership exchange for growth companies to more easily and effectively gain marketplace visibility. Alpha Board was created in response to clients’ ever increasing demands for companies expanded their reach, reputation and visibility in today’s hyper-competitive “now world order” of business.
Dave has held a wide variety of leadership positions at 3M, Pillsbury, Imation and his own business ventures. These have included new product development, business formation, business launch, business management, marketing, product management, global market development, business development and new business consulting. His firms, NeuVision Group, Alpha Board and Alpha Scouts have worked with companies like 3M, Monsanto, Deere, Toshiba, Pfizer, Caterpillar, Dow Chemical, USDA, Prairie iNet, AgWeb.com, MarketWatch and dozens more ranging from start-ups, venture companies, mid-market growth leaders, and major corporate giants. NeuVision Group was the launch firm to help commercialize the largest e-business site in agriculture.
Dave’s corporate experience includes commercialization of numerous new product programs as well as successfully managing and growing existing businesses in fiercely competitive markets. He held global marketing and business management responsibilities for three major product lines totaling over $700 million in annual sales.
While at 3M and its technology spin-off, Imation, Dave collaborated on business, marketing and new product initiatives with companies like Microsoft, Hewlett-Packard, IBM, Sony, Seagate, ADIC, Exabyte, Iomega and others. With his collaborating partners, they have career experience with a number of the most powerful global brands and most admired companies in business.
Dave received an MBA in marketing and finance from Indiana University. He received a B.S. in agricultural economics from Kansas State University, with additional studies in finance. In addition to his metro-based business career, Dave maintains ongoing ownership and a passive role in a Kansas family farming operation.
Debbie Leonard is the business development partner in the certified public accounting firm of Thill & Leonard, CPAs, LLC. Debbie has been a CPA for more than 30 years and is a proud KU Jayhawk! Described as the "last person you would think was a CPA," she has been dubbed the "Networking Queen." Debbie holds a Bachelor of Science degree in accounting and business administration and a master's degree in finance and marketing. She also holds a CCIM designation (Certified Commercial Investment Manager). Debbie holds an honorary degree in "Making Mundane Topics Interesting." Despite all the alphabet soup, it's the marketing and networking that is her passion.
Always taking the humorous approach to mundane topics, Debbie enjoys sharing the many secrets to effective networking that she has collected and practiced over the years. Her entertaining and unique approach to identifying the "castoffs and champions" we all face when networking—and providing solutions to managing those relationships—has made Debbie a highly sought-after speaker on a variety of networking topics. She is the founder of the Business Referral Alliance (BRA) and was co-founder of the Jewish Professionals business group in Kansas City. Debbie has also been a vibrant addition to many discussion panels, lunch and learns, and training seminars on the topics of marketing and networking, making her well-known among the networking royalty in Kansas City.
Debbie is active in several networking groups and is involved with several local charities. She loves to teach and has the ability to turn topics such as accounting and networking into entertaining lessons!
Martha's a combination of tough-as-nails determination and high style. You can imagine her climbing a mountain in six-inch stilettos. Why's she climbing? The view's better from the top—and Martha's always looking for ways to see differently and share her vision with everyone around her.
After graduating from Washburn University, Martha spent several years in retail management before joining a major Midwestern marketing firm, which helped launch her career as one of the premier marketing professionals in her field. She was responsible for guiding marketing strategy and planning for many of the firm's major clients.
In 1997, she joined Heartland Health as marketing director and built the fledgling insurance company's marketing department from the ground up. She developed marketing plans, supervised two advertising agencies, and directed communications and PR.
In 1998, MB Piland Advertising & Marketing was born. Martha started the company with a unique new philosophy—Expert Sourcing. Her goal: provide small and medium sized clients with "big agency" strategic planning and creative experience by drawing on a vast pool of independent talent to assemble customized teams for each client.
Her unconventional, holistic strategic planning ability means creative thinking is applied to client problems. Unique and powerful results follow.
Her experience working both with clients and as a client brings added value to the brands she serves.
Martha is a graduate of Leadership Topeka, Leadership Kansas and Leadership America. She was chosen as IABC's EXCEL honoree in 2008 and the 2010 Woman of Excellence by the Career Chapter of American Business Women's Association. She is also a highly sought speaker, conducting seminars and motivational talks in places as near as Topeka—and also throughout the U.S. and Canada.
Under her leadership, the firm has won numerous awards—including Topeka Chamber Small Business of the Year and State of Kansas Woman-Owned Service Business of the Year—and hundreds of local, regional and national awards for its creative work.