Cal Poly

Orfalea College of Business

Executives in Residence

The Orfalea College of Business is proud to bring its Executives in Residence program to Cal Poly’s campus. Throughout the year, business leaders, innovators and entrepreneurs will spend time with our students and faculty to share their unique insights on their field and how they’ve earned their success. The executives, including many of our own alumni, can provide current students with a relatable perspective on how their Cal Poly degree prepared them for challenging, dynamic careers that lay ahead. Faculty will also bolster their understanding of current industry trends as they shape their curriculum to empower career-ready graduates. Through class lectures, faculty roundtables and campus tours, the executives will get to know Cal Poly today, seeing first hand how Learn by Doing breeds success in the Orfalea College of Business.

Students signing up for the Executives in Residence Roundtables should visit the student information page.


Mark Newton – Environmental Engineering ’00, MBA/M.S. Engineering Management ’02

Mark graduated from Cal Poly's Environmental Engineering Program in 2000, and the MBA/MS Engineering Management Program in 2002. He spent three years working as a civil engineer for the County of Sacramento, before changing careers to the entertainment business. For the last 13 years, Mark has worked in post production management ranging from running post production facilities, to series from MTV's "Meet the Barkers" to Bravo's "Real Housewives of New Jersey." Mark is currently the senior vice president of post production at Thinkfactory Media.

Bill Aston - Accounting '87

Bill Aston graduated the Orfalea College of Business with an accounting concentration in 1987. After initially joining KPMG, he soon ventured out into the world of start-ups. Initially specializing in supply chain, finite capacity scheduling and procurement, he moved in to the area of customer experience, voice recognition and customer omni-channel self-service. Aston was the first VP of sales for several different young companies early in his career and eventually helped a few companies IPO. Today he is the general manager and vice president for North America at a fast growing pre-IPO SAAS company. Aston has built teams and winning cultures from the very early stages to the midsize stages during his career. He specializes in SAAS, go-to-market strategy, proper organizational growth and most importantly execution. Building business cases and product positioning have been key drivers to Aston's success.

Bill Barton

William "Bill" Barton is the president and CEO of California Closet Company, Inc. operator of the California Closets brand of custom home storage solutions. The company operates 125 stores through 70 company-owned and franchised locations across North America and operates manufacturing plants in Michigan and Arizona. He was the co-founder and president of Tier Technologies, an information technology professional services firm, in 1991. Grew it to 1,200 employees, 24 offices and $120 million in sales by 2000. Tier made the 1997 “Inc. 500” list of the fastest growing private companies in the America. Tier went public in 1997 (NASDAQ: TIER). Barton held prior management positions at American Express and American Airlines. He graduated from the M.I.T. /Inc. Magazine “Birthing of Giants” Executive Entrepreneurial Leadership Program and holds a Presidential MBA from Pepperdine University. Barton is a former member of the Young Presidents Organization (YPO) and World Entrepreneurs Organization (WEO). Bill lives in Marin County, California along with his wife Nancy, they have 4 children and two grandchildren, including Thomas, who is attending Cal Poly concentrating in accounting and finance.

David Bowin - Management Information Systems '85

David Bowin is the Director of Cloud Strategy in Oracle Application Development. He graduated from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo in 1985 with a degree in Management Information Systems from Cal Poly’s Orfalea College of Business. David’s career in enterprise business solutions started with Accenture where, as a senior manager, he focused on developing and implementing a full spectrum of solutions for high tech and consumer packaged goods customers. Leveraging this experience, David joined PeopleSoft as they transitioned from being an HCM only solution provider to the delivery of a full ERP suite of applications. David has been part of the Oracle Cloud Applications Development team from the onset and as a leader in the Application Strategy team has been involved in guiding the overall scope and direction of Oracle’s Cloud Applications. In his current role David is focused on enabling customers and partners in their adoption and roll-out of Oracle Cloud Solutions.

Brandon Van Buren - Accounting and Finance '06

Brandon joined Google Capital in 2014. Prior to Google Capital, Brandon worked at Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. where he focused on private equity and growth equity investments in the technology sector. He is passionate about democratizing disruptive technologies. Brandon graduated magna cum laude with a degree in Business Administration with concentrations in finance and accounting from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo and earned an MBA from Harvard Business School where he was a Baker Scholar.

Scott Cooper - Accounting ‘91

Scott Cooper graduated with a degree in business administration in 1991. He is the CFO of Allegro Ophthalmics, LLC. He spent eight years as the CFO for WaveTec Vision Systems, Inc., where he raised more than $60 million of new venture-capital backed equity in four financing transactions; secured more than $10 million with three venture-debt facilities; and helped develop the company to grow from zero revenue to $15 million. WaveTec was sold for $350 million to Alcon. A former football player, Cooper is a supporter of the Accounting and International Fellowships, Cal Poly Athletics, and Construction Management. He served on the Accounting Department Advisory Board from 2010-15 and serves on the Dean’s Advisory Council. Cooper and his wife, Laura (CM, ’91), have two children. Their son Thomas is enrolled at Cal Poly.

Dan Delaney - Finance '00

Dan Delaney has more than 15 years experience in private equity and mergers and acquisitions primarily focused on the industrial and energy related markets. Delaney joined IGP in 2007 and participates in sourcing, evaluating and executing new investments as well as managing existing investments. He joined from Glencoe Capital, LLC, a Chicago based private equity firm, where he was a vice president focused on late-stage buyouts in the industrial, energy and consumer industries. Prior to joining Glencoe, Delaney worked in the investment banking group at A.G. Edwards, Inc. He earned his Bachelor of Science degree in business administration with a concentration in finance from California Polytechnic State University and his Master's of Business Administration with a concentration in operations and accounting from the University of Chicago Graduate School of Business, Beta Gamma Sigma, and with Honors. Delaney currently serves, or has served, as a director of Cambridge International, Inc., Controls Southeast, Inc., Ideal Clamp Products, Inc., Integrated Global Services, Inc., North American Substation Services, and Seaboard International, Inc.

Michael Dobak - Marketing '91

Michael Dobak is the CEO of Ogilvy & Mather West and South. Dobak earned a degree in business administration with a concentration in marketing from Cal Poly. He began his career in Los Angles at CBS Network and DMB&B. In 2000, he joined Hall Riney & Partners in San Francisco where he helped position and market emerging mobile technologies such as the camera phone, the video phone and the first 3G broadband network. Dobak then moved to Arnold in Boston where he led the Progressive account and its infamous "Flo" campaign. He then transitioned to Ogilvy & Mather, working with IBM and Smarter Planet. He was appointed CEO of the firm's West Coast office in 2013 and its Southern office in 2014. He lives in Manhattan Beach with his wife and three children.

Brett Eldridge - Electrical Engineering '89, MBA '95

Brett Eldridge is the SVP of Global Customer Services at Palo Alto Networks where he has managed all post-sales functions for the past seven years. Brett was the VP of Product Management at Infoblox and was responsible for defining product strategy and direction. He previously managed the worldwide team of Systems Engineers and Professional Services Engineers at Infoblox. Brett received a bachelor's degree in Electronic Engineering (1989) and a Master's of Business Administration (1995) from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo.

Jeff Harper

Jeff Harper joined the MINDBODY executive team in May 2015 as Senior Vice President, People & Culture. With over 20 years of human resources experience, he provides global leadership for all aspects of human resources, including the continuous evolution of our people and culture strategies, and is known for building strong company cultures that help drive the success of the business. Prior to MINDBODY, Harper spent six years at Demand Media (NYSE:DMD) leading both domestic and international human resources functions, building much of the infrastructure that took Demand Media from a private company to a global publicly-traded internet media leader. Harper also held Human Resources leadership positions at Abraxis Bio Science (NASDAQ: ABII), THQ Inc. (NASDAQ: THQI), Ubisoft, Inc. (XPAR: UBI), and Capital One (NYSE: COF). Harper's passion for building great cultures and workplaces has been recognized by NPR, SFGate, and Glassdoor. In addition to his role on executive teams, he served on the board of directors of several companies and professional organizations. Jeff earned his graduate degree in Industrial / Organizational Psychology from Georgia Institute of Technology.

Kathy Hession

Kathy is a graduate of Boston College with a degree in mathematics and a minor in business administration. She began her career at Electronic Data Systems (EDS) where she spent five years in a technical computer vvv program and then worked with EDS customers at their various locations and multiple industries. Hession then joined Cullinet Software in Boston where she worked on relational database management systems, first an international marketing specialist traveling to 14 countries over several years. Her career then took her to Silicon Valley where she continued as a product marketing manager at several database companies there. While working in the valley, she took advantage of the booming economy and growth in relational database companies and transitioned her career to sales with a focus on large banks and retailers in the West. She then advanced into sales management for large national and international accounts. Hession's most recent position before retiring from IBM in late 2016, was operations manager of the hybrid cloud division – west region were she focused on building IBM’s Cloud Sales team organizations and operational support including forecasting and managing sales expectations for the business. She lives in the Silicon Valley and San Francisco with her husband and two children.

Chris Hieb

With more than 20 years of investment banking, consulting, project management and operational experience with high technology companies, Chris Hieb has advised clients on domestic and cross-border M&A transactions with highly active buyers and financial sponsors, focusing on the enterprise software, advanced analytics and contact center software infrastructure sectors. Prior to joining Signal Hill, Hieb spent more than seven years building the M&A practice at Pacific Crest Securities. He began his investment banking career at SoundView Technology Group, continuing his career at W.R. Hambrecht as the Head of West Coast M&A, and then Oppenheimer as the Head of West Coast M&A, prior to joining Pacific Crest in 2008. Hieb also spent a decade in the fields of nuclear technology and advanced materials including work at several U.S. nuclear facilities, followed by an appointment to the Institute for Nuclear Power Operations. Hieb earned a B.S. degree in Nuclear Engineering from Purdue University and conducted course study in Economics and the Analysis of Competitive Markets at California Polytechnic State University.

Joe Kolina - Political Science '86

As a fully licensed bank advisor and sports marketing executive, Joe is currently combining his 30 years of business experience into a new role as Vice President of Sales & Marketing with Sports 1 Marketing (S1M), a division of Warren Moon enterprises. S1M recently launched an award-winning technology called the Aggregated Marketing Platform (AMP) that Joe is delivering into the sports & entertainment industry. For decades, Joe has been a leader in building relationship capital. He originally spent four years working in the stock market, before joining International Management Group (IMG), the global sports agency where he spent six years in Hong Kong. After returning from Asia, he opened his own sports boutique for nine years, Starscope Management, Inc. which allowed Joe to pursue a more diverse set of projects which included budgeting, forecasting, tax and management of athletes’ financial affairs, managing golf course marketing, running events and producing television shows. In 2012, he joined BBVA Compass, dedicated an advisory practice on a digital banking platform and integrated financial planning software. A scholarship football running back for the Mustangs and Political Science graduate from Cal Poly in 1986, Joe still stays very involved in the school’s alumni and athletic fundraising activities. Joe holds a MBA in Finance from Fordham University, New York. Joe and his wife Shelley, a real estate executive, have six children and resides in Newport Beach, California.

Kevin Krantz - Management Information Systems '98

Kevin Krantz is the director of global sales at LinkedIn. Today, he builds a global sales team focused on creating a connected enterprise across a variety of facets encompassing talent, brand marketing, lead generation, and learning. He has been at LinkedIn since 2009, serving as an enterprise relationship manager, a senior sales manager and director of global accounts for LinkedIn Sales Solutions. Previously, Krantz was an associate director with AT&T. He also directed business development for Woodland Tech, a company he owned in Chicago. Krantz graduated Cal Poly with a bachelor's degree in business administration, concentrating in management information systems.

Pete Kreiser - Marketing '87

Pete Kreiser is the vice president, marketing & communications for CoreLogic, a leading global property information, analytics and data-enabled solutions provider. He is responsible for corporate marketing, brand development and corporate communications. While leading all aspects of marketing for a privately-held growth company, Pete re-branded that company as CoreLogic in 2005. In 2007 CoreLogic was acquired and combined with other businesses and re-launched as a $2B public company under the CoreLogic brand in 2010. During this time Pete’s marketing responsibilities expanded from business unit and segment product marketing to corporate marketing roles culminating in the appointment to his current position at the time of the public launch. Before joining CoreLogic Pete headed marketing at Integres, a supply chain technology company and held progressive marketing leadership roles at United Airlines including global marketing leadership for the United Airline cargo business, and brand manager —where he led the development of the Star Alliance brand. Pete graduated from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree. Additionally, he holds a Master of Business Administration from the University of Texas at Austin.

Chris Loeffler - Accounting '06

Chris Loeffler is cofounder and CEO of Caliber - The Wealth Development Company. The Scottsdale, AZ-based company offers clients an alternative strategy for investing in real estate to grow wealth and long-term cash flow. Since founding Caliber in 2008 with no startup capital, Chris has successfully grown Caliber to 600 employees and $250 million in assets under management. Under his leadership and strategic oversight, Caliber is now a full-service investment firm comprised of five businesses: investment, construction & development, property management, brokerage and hospitality. Properties include commercial, residential, multi-family, self-storage and hospitality real estate in AZ, NV and AK. Caliber has earned prestigious local and national recognition as an Inc. 500/5000 Fastest Growing Company, 2016 Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce Economic Driver Award and 2016 Better Business Bureau Torch Award for Ethics. Chris has been honored as LODGING Magazine’s 2016 Top Hotel Innovator, 2016 Think Realty’s Commercial Investor of the Year and the 2016 CRE Innovator of the Year for the Landmark Leaders from Phoenix Business Journal. He is a 2006 graduate of Cal Poly San Luis Obispo where he majored in business administration and concentrated in accounting.

Matt Macomber - Economics '95

Matt Macomber is a managing director and the global head of web technology for BlackRock, the world’s largest asset manager with $5.4 trillion in assets under management. He is responsible for designing, developing, and maintaining websites and mobile applications that support external users as well as clients across all BlackRock channels. Additionally, his team oversees development of a variety of internal and external web tools serving BlackRock employees and customers. Prior to joining BlackRock, Matt held senior fintech roles at a number of large financial institutions and spent four years in the internet consulting field. Matt earned a B.S. in Economics from California Polytechnic State University at San Luis Obispo in 1995. He serves on the Dean’s Advisory Council at the Orfalea College of Business at Cal Poly. Matt is based in San Francisco.

Saira Malik - Economics '92

Saira Malik is a managing director and Head of Global Active Equity Portfolio Management for the TIAA organization. In addition, Malik has portfolio management responsibilities for the diversified equity investment strategy. She joined the TIAA organization in 2003. Malik has 21 years of investment experience, including positions with JP Morgan Asset Management as vice president and portfolio manager for a small cap growth fund, as well as an equity research analyst. She earned a B.S. in economics from California Polytechnic State University San Luis Obispo, as well as an M.S. in finance from the University of Wisconsin – Madison.

Jim Marocco - Economics '94

Jim Marocco is a vice president of finance for Alphabet/Google Inc. He started working at Google in 2003 and has been responsible for a variety of key financial activities including accounting and controls, compliance, forecasting and analysis, financial and order management systems, strategic deal support and managing outsourced operations. Marocco currently manages a global team responsible for all financial activities associated with Alphabet’s “Other Bets” business segment, including products such as Google Fiber and autonomous cars. Prior to joining Google, he held various financial and management positions at technology companies including the parenting media start-up Dr. Spock Company, Lycos, NEC Technologies and Fujitsu. Additionally, he serves on the Corporate Advisory Board for the Northern California chapter of the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. Marocco graduated from Cal Poly with a B.S. degree in economics in 1994.

Kevin Moultrup - Information Systems '83

Kevin Moultrup has more than 30 years of executive leadership and sales experience in technology. Moultrup is co-founder of Heirloom Inc., a leading provider of Enterprise Cloud software where he provided the vision and direction for the company as it pioneers innovative ways to bring the power of an enterprise cloud computing to any organization. He spent 18 years at Micro Focus in many executive roles, including EVP of worldwide channels sales and president of North America where he was responsible for sales, service, and marketing. Moultrup was on the executive team that purchased Micro Focus in 2001 and grew the valuation from $90 million to $1.5B. Before joining Micro Focus, he spent six years in various executive sales and marketing roles at Sun Microsystems. Moultrup graduated from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo with a degree in business administration and a concentration in information systems.

Jeffrey Neal

Jeffrey Neal's 25 year career of experiences uniquely range from Account Manager to Chief Operations Officer, West and Chief Marketing Officer while ranking as a top named executive officer at Kforce, Inc. (NASDAQ: KFRC). Prior to his departure from Kforce late in 2016, he was a key senior executive in the development and execution of growth strategies that led to profitable revenue growth from $2M to $1.3B. Operationally he led a sales force of 900 team members and oversaw 5600 billable Technology and Finance & Accounting professionals. Additionally, was responsible for the firms product positioning, marketing and brand development, corporate training and evaluation of mergers and acquisitions. In 2015, KFRC celebrated 20 years on NASDAQ. Mr. Neal is currently focused on Executive Advisory, partnering with high growth companies with revenues under $200M. Jeffrey's successful track record of developing high performance cultures is centered on servant leadership and Behavioral Differentiation. He was featured in the timeless book Winning Behavior: What the Smartest and Most Successful Companies Do Differently. He is a graduate of University of California, Santa Barbara and completed the Executive Leadership program at Stanford University. He and wife, a Cal Poly SLO alumni, have been married for 20 years and have three children, one of which attends Cal Poly SLO. They reside in Marin County. As a former NCAA athlete, he currently is an avid outdoor enthusiast, including; triathlon, mountain biking and back country skiing.

John Ormiston - Marketing '87

John Ormiston is a founding partner in 1026 Beverage Company, a producer and marketer of wine and spirit brands for domestic and international sales. After graduating from Cal Poly in 1987, John joined E&J Gallo’s management development program. Since then he has held leadership positions with some of the world’s largest wine and spirit producers. He has been involved in the development of successful brands including Jack Daniel’s, Pinnacle Vodka, Woodford Reserve, Sonoma Cutrer, Glen Ellen and Fetzer Wines. In 2011, he led the creation of the Alliance Company, a joint venture between Brown Forman and Bacardi, two of the world’s largest spirits producers. He created 1026 Beverage Company in 2015 and is a leader in sales management and social media marketing in the wine and spirits industry. He earned his MBA from Pepperdine in 2000.

Kyle Park - Finance '90

Kyle Park is managing director of Harvest Management Partners LLC, a boutique Silicon Valley Investment Bank that he co-founded in 2010. Harvest Management Partners specializes in mergers and acquisitions for a variety of technology segments and performs advisory services for both public and private clients such clients as Fiat Chrysler Automotive, TE Connectivity and SiriusXM. Prior to Harvest, Kyle spent over 10 years as CFO at several private companies and held senior management positions at numerous other Silicon Valley public companies including Niku (NIKU; acquired by Computer Associates in 2005), Synplicity (SYNP; acquired by Synopsys in 2008) and Synopsys (SNPS). Kyle received his bachelor’s degree in finance from Cal Poly in 1990 and completed his MBA from the Santa Clara University, Leavey School of Business, with a concentration in International Finance in 1995.

Garrett Ponder - Finance '06

Garrett Ponder is a senior marketing manager at Qualcomm Technologies, Inc., where he is responsible for strategic partnerships and sponsorships. He graduated Cum Laude from Cal Poly’s Orfalea College of Business in 2006 with a concentration in finance and a minor in economics. Garrett started his career in the mobile industry as an intern at Qualcomm in 2004 and has been with the company for 13 years. During his tenure, he has served in a variety of business areas including Finance, Investor Relations, Industry Analyst Relations, Public Relations/US Media Relations, and now Corporate Marketing.

Brent Smolinski - B.S. in Economics and M.S. in Computer Science

Brent Smolinski is a partner with McKinsey & Company’s Business Technology Office. Brent graduated from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo with a B.S. in economics and M.S. in computer science. Before joining the firm, Brent held technical and leadership positions for firms like SAS and Wachovia Investment Bank, as well as government research facilities and high-tech start-ups. Smolinski’s expertise lies in acquisition strategies and diligence for tech and tech services companies. Throughout his career, Smolinski has conducted product and service strategies within data center hosting and cloud services space, developed the firm’s data center and cloud design, and has also conducted more than 20 studies on data center diligence and strategy. He currently leads IT infrastructure practices, and he also leads a broad range of corporate and institutional investors on enterprise technology targets.

Frank Verdecanna - Accounting ‘93

Frank Verdecanna graduated with a degree in business administration in 1993. Frank is currently serving as the Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of FireEye, Inc. He has held a number of other leadership positions in the FireEye finance organization since joining the company in 2012, including Senior Vice President of Finance. Prior to FireEye, Frank was Chief Financial Officer at Apptera, iPass and Impact Hire, and he also held senior positions at Interlink Computer Sciences and Coopers & Lybrand LLP. He lives in San Jose, California with his wife and three children.

Jim Zurbuchen - Accounting ‘81

Jim Zurbuchen is co-owner of B&Z Properties, Inc. and related companies, a diversified commercial real estate development, investment and asset management company. Past projects include master planned residential communities, suburban office, industrial and retail buildings as well as golf courses. In 1981, Jim joined Deloitte, Haskins and Sells where he specialized in non-profits, leveraged buyouts, long-term government contracting as well as participating in the firm’s continuing education programs as an instructor. In 1985, Jim joined Angeles Real Estate Corporation, a real estate investment company, as First Vice President in the general partner department where he was responsible for acquisitions, asset management, portfolio strategies, litigation and dispositions. In 1990, Jim moved to Sacramento and joined a local real estate company in the position of chief financial officer which he purchased in 2000 and recast as B&Z Properties. Jim graduated from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo in 1981 with a Bachelor of Science in business administration, concentration in accounting. Jim is a certified public accountant (inactive) and licensed real estate broker.

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