About

Our Team

Impact 21 is a team of professional consultants with broad experience in the industries we serve. Our consultants have experience as former retailers and senior leaders in top-tier companies, as well as functional experience across a broad range of disciplines. Our dynamic team will provide hands-on expertise and leadership to a wide range of opportunities within your business and often act as an extension of your team. From store management to senior management, our team is focused on bringing exceptional project management and subject matter expertise to business and technology initiatives.

Our consultants have a strong understanding of the industries we serve and many are former retailers and providers that come from many different positions and levels within large, mid-size and small companies. Their experience ranges from company-operated, distributor, dealer, and franchise to licensed channels of trade. Impact 21 has successfully implemented technologies, processes, programs, models, training, and other solutions within each unique market segment.

Alvin FortsonSenior Principal Consultant

IT Management/Strategy, Project Management, Retail Systems, Enterprise Architecture

Biography

Alvin Fortson, Senior Principal Consultant, has over 30 years of Information Technology experience, with the past 20 years in the Petroleum/Convenience Retail Industry. During his career, he has served in several senior IT management positions operating The Pantry and Quick Stop Food Stores in the Mid-Atlantic region. Alvin has served as CIO / VP of Information Technology, Director of Network Systems Development, as well as Director of Enterprise Applications Systems.

Using strategic planning, Alvin has implemented multiple systems and programs in business retail locations, including PDI/Enterprise, PDI/RMS, JDA, fuel pricing, time and attendance, labor scheduling, help desk, document imaging, workflow, enterprise data warehouse, and point of sales systems.  He has been responsible for overseeing all IT operations: IT strategy, project management, retail systems, enterprise architecture, application development, help desk, and price book. Alvin has extensive experience in mergers and acquisitions (M&A) and was responsible for planning the transition of all systems for numerous M&A activities while at The Pantry.

Alvin has been a long time contributing member of CONNEXUS (formerly PCATS - Petroleum Convenience Alliance for Technology Standards), in which he has served on many committees working to solve key issues in the industry today, such as EB2B (Electronic Business to Business), Lottery and Motor Fuels.   One of his most distinguished accomplishments was serving as a board member of PCATS. Alvin is also a member of the Association of Retail Technology Standards (ARTS) and participated with the Retail Orphan Initiative (ROI).  Alvin is a graduate of Mercer University.

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Bert ParhamBusiness & IT Analyst

Helpdesk & Customer Service, Systems Support, Payments, IT Systems Training & Implementation

Biography

Bert Parham, Business & IT Analyst, has over 10 years of experience working in the IT, Technology, Analytics and Helpdesk fields, across multiple industries. He has used his experience in training and customer service to build, lead and position high performing teams that improve the customer experience, meet customer deliverables, drive strategic initiatives and deliver a competitive advantage.

Since joining Impact 21, Bert has worked on a large-scale customer engagement and payments project working with multiple companies and internal workstreams to launch new products to the convenience channel. As a business and IT analyst, Bert supported the client on every facet of the project, including working with internal workstreams to integrate activities and ensure completion of deliverables. He also led multiple workstream meetings, tracking of action items and development of internal senior level updates. 

Prior to joining Impact 21, Bert worked in the education field for a major university’s Analytics & Technologies area in the Customer Service Desk and Project Management Offices (PMO). In his latest role, Bert supervised a staff of 15 and was responsible for hiring, on-boarding, training, scheduling and performance management for the Tier 2 Customer Support Center. He was successful in implementing a Tier 2 responsibilities matrix that reduced call abandon rates by 5%, reduced SLAs breaches to 0% and improved request fulfillment. He also launched a new Knowledge base and Help website to utilize Knowledge Centered Support principles.

Bert has also provided project management services across the university for his department on many initiatives, including purchasing and resource allocation within Finance & HR, development of marketing materials and publications within Marketing and development of a software download portal and desktop visualization project across all departments. As part of the Universities PMO office, Bert served as project manager and/or subject matter expert on projects ranging from a core network infrastructure upgrade, an enterprise eLearning innovation initiative and various other strategic planning, process improvement, network strategy and network remediation initiatives.

Bert also has several years of experience working as a supervisor and technician within a regional computer support organization, providing computer, printer, and networking support to retail and education clients. Bert has a B.S. in Computer Information Systems from Georgia Southwestern State University.Close

Casey McKenzieSenior Principal Consultant, MBA, CCCM, CCACM

Category Management: Retail, Category Management: Consumer Package Goods, Training

Biography

You’d be hard pressed to find someone more adept in convenience yet as professional and personable as Casey McKenzie. With over 21 years in leading c-store chains, another nineteen in consulting, Casey has experience in almost all facets of the c-store channel of trade, including finance, operations, category management, re-engineering and strategic planning. Along with his strong focus on category management initiatives, he serves as project manager for convenience store chains implementing retail automation, category management, business alignment and organization integration.

Bringing a wealth of experience and knowledge, along with his keen sense of humor, Casey is a frequent distinguished speaker at industry events. His expertise has been an asset to the National Association of Convenience Stores' (NACS). In conjunction with Willard Bishop Consulting, Ltd, Casey was co-author of the NACS Category Management Guidebook and has served as facilitator for workshops on category management throughout the country and internationally. In 2014 Casey led the initiative to convert the NACS Framework course into an online-based learning curriculum which launched in 2015.

Casey became the first to obtain the Certified Convenience Category Manager and Certified Convenience Advanced Category Manager designations from NACS and led the development of Advanced Category Management training material and workshops. He served as project manager and co-author on the NACS Marketing Toolkit for Store Operations and developed a training workshop on that material as well. Casey was also a key member of the team that developed the activity based costing model known as C/SCAPE, co-sponsored by the NACS and the American Wholesale Marketers Association and has conducted numerous training workshops around the United States.

Outside the convenience channel, Casey has led numerous projects with packaged goods manufacturers and supermarket chains. His work has included clients and projects in Canada, Mexico and Ireland.

Born and raised in southern Ohio, Casey’s traditional Midwestern values of faith, integrity and hard work have served him well over the years. He earned an Associate in Accounting degree from Shawnee State University, a Bachelors in Business Administration from Ohio University and an MBA from Eastern Kentucky University. Though hard work usually pays off, Casey always finds himself chasing the perfect round of golf. He takes pride in supporting his wife and children in their pursuits while serving others through his church. Close

Chad WinterboerPrincipal Consultant

Cross-Functional Process Improvement, Retail Automation, Organizational Alignment, and Business Intelligence

Biography

Chad Winterboer, Principal Consultant with Impact 21, has 20 years of practical and technical experience in the convenience retail industry. In this role, Chad focuses on aligning financial and technology personnel and processes with business strategies. Chad ensures his projects and solutions are practical, value driven and aligned with organizational goals. He has a strong background in developing teams to work cross functionally and in supporting employee training and development.

Before joining Impact 21, Chad held several positions with Prima Marketing, LLC, the largest 7Eleven licensee. During his tenure, Prima grew from 14 to 90 stores. As a company officer, Chad managed accounting, IT and retail automation teams and championed numerous cross-functional projects such as Focal Point and customized BI, price book, POS scanning, item level inventory management, computer assisted ordering, and rebate management. Prior to Prima, he held several accounting positions for Avanti Petroleum, a 70-store chain and is a graduate of the University of Northern Iowa with a degree in accounting.

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Channing WorkmanBusiness & IT Analyst

Data Analysis, Database Development, Business Intelligence Development

Biography

When it comes to data analysis and IT, Channing Workman is the man for the job. With a background in Database development and administration, Channing specializes in the .NET Framework, QlikView, and Microsoft SQL Server, leveraging business processes through the strategic application of the appropriate technologies. Channing is charged with the development and system administration of Impact’s internal management tools and Business Intelligence (BI) offering. He develops web, desktop, and BI applications, for Impact 21 and its clients. 

Channing has reengineered and automated Impact’s Project Resource Allocation Tool. He developed all Extract, Transform and Load (ETL), Reporting, and Business Intelligence tools and conducted industry research. He has helped clients through Point of Sale and Back Office System Market Analysis via Web Scraper. He reengineered and automated data loading of the Cigarette Excise Tax Asp.Net web application. Channing managed the data loading and development of all existing and new clients to Impact’s BI offerings: QlikView, Excel, and SQL Server Reporting Services. He has handled Ad Hoc data analysis for several clients and brought disparate data sources together through the development of Helpdesk Incident Management Reporting and ETL process. He conducted data loading and additional development of Impact’s BI tool, developing Inventory Management Optimization (IMO) in the QlikView BI Suite.

Channing’s Bachelor of Science in Business Administration (BSBA) in Computer Information Systems from the University of Louisville, along with his background in the convenience, retail/petroleum, and construction industries suit him perfectly for his Impact 21 projects. He has lent his expertise to many clients, like Circle K Convenience Stores, Couche-Tard, Ricker’s, Murphy USA, Sunoco Inc., Scientific Games Corporation, Maverik Inc., Irving Oil, and CW Electric Inc.

A native to Kentucky, Channing learned his work ethic from family, showing him value in pride for what you do, hard work, love, and kindness. Focusing his free time on guitar, fitness, and snowboarding, Channing lives by the words of J.R.R. Tolkien, “All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.”


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Christine GrantPrincipal Consultant

Pricebook, Store Operations, Retail Automation, Retail Analytics, Customer Service

Biography

Christine has over 15 years of experience in the convenience store industry.Her career began in operations where she held positions ranging from sales associate to store manager. After opening and managing several new stores; she joined Irving Oil’s newly formed marketing department as the Pricebook Manager. During her tenure in Pricebook, Christine implemented retail automation and managed pricebook for 500 locations throughout the United States and Canada. She was instrumental in creating a North American Pricebook by integrating Irving’s Canadian operations during its PDI implementation.Christine was also involved in the set up and implementation of Irving's loyalty marketing initiatives. Her involvement and input led to her joining the startup company Override as the Customer Relations Manager, where she successfully implemented both an external and internal helpdesk to service customers and locations.

During Christine’s tenure at Impact 21, she has successfully set-up new Pricebook organizations and systems for several retailers with different solutions and supports all of Impact 21’s loyalty and retail analytics and customer service initiatives. Christine received a degree in marketing and business management from Hesser College.

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Connie GuilfoilPrincipal Consultant

Project Management, Process Management, Standardization & Improvement, IT System Training & Implementation, Training & Development, Services Support

Biography

Connie Guilfoil is a big picture person, granting her a distinct vantage to see end-to-end solution requirements and generate next steps and action items to meet those requirements. This skill plays a key role in Connie’s project management engagements. She consistently helps clients meet budget and deliverable deadlines while successfully coordinating work stream critical paths for enterprise-wide projects. These PMO activities include gap analysis and dependency review. Connie offers an objective, outside perspective for clients, filling the resource gap and ultimately seamless transitioning role to the clients’ appropriate position.

Connie has put her extensive project management capabilities to work for Impact 21, managing both software and hardware point of sale solutions within retail, food service, and convenient store markets. She led a major product development initiative with a large POS company while managing multiple vendors and internal teams toward an aggressive timeline. In addition, she has worked on a major foodservice company’s analytics and data management project, resulting in new IT infrastructure and processes to support its wholesale and retail clients.  
Connie’s diverse professional background provides skills and methodologies that translate into any industry, allowing her to uphold standard proven practices. Her career path awarded her expertise in project management, change management, business process innovation, organizational design and development, CRM design, curriculum development, as well as, information systems training and implementation. She applied these skills in her roles within the University of Kentucky IT Services, Lexmark International, Excentra, and Dun and Bradstreet. 

Connie earned her Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration as a Major of Finance and Marketing from the University of Kentucky. She also holds several certifications - Project Management Professional (PMP), Help Desk Institute (HDI) Knowledge Centered Support (KCS), ServiceNow System Administration, Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL) v3, and True Lean Systems Program – providing her a tremendous wealth of knowledge and high level of expertise.

During her 20+ years of professional experience, Connie has worked hard to balance career and family priorities, therefore always focused on what she loves to do most. She serves as a board member for The Nest – Center for Women, Children, and Families and for Crestwood Christian Church and acts as director of the middle school church camp and as adult leader for the middle school mission trip. As a mother of two college students and a senior high schooler, she still finds time to enjoy her son’s baseball and running marathons.Close

Corby OlsonSenior Principal Consultant

Financial Accounting & Analysis, GAP Analysis, Training, Project Management

Biography

Corby Olson, Senior Principal Consultant with Impact 21 and financial consultant extraordinaire, prides herself on truly listening to her clients. She works diligently to understand the root cause of issues while keeping an eye on the big picture to lead clients forward. Corby’s background with PDI, gives her the expertise to help customers migrate to new Enterprise accounting systems and guide them through setup, training, testing and certification of the software. When implementing PDI, Corby provides clients with training for all modules.

Corby’s knowledge and expertise in financial accounting and reconciliations have provided many Impact 21 clients with the ability to leverage technology that supports the entire business enterprise. She has also integrated different general ledger systems with common convenience retailing back-office solutions. Corby enjoys working with customers to help them find the right technology solution for business challenges, guiding the customer to take full accountability of their system and processes.

With 33 years in the petroleum convenience industry, most of her career been focused on streamlining accounting procedures within the financial accounting arena. She has implemented numerous systems with continued process improvements to gain efficiencies. Prior to joining Impact 21, Corby spent eight years with PDI in a consulting capability, most recently as a Consulting Manager. Her project management work at PDI ranged from process improvements to full system implementations. She was instrumental in numerous accounting system migrations, including SAP Retail. She conducted training classes during annual PDI Users conferences. Corby was recognized for delivery of outstanding service to internal and external customers, for her strength as a technical liaison, and for effectively providing information and discussing financial and technical issues with audiences of various knowledge levels. 

Prior to PDI, Corby was a Senior Consultant with Accenture and supported 850 company operated retail locations for BP on an outsourced basis. She was one of two BP/Amoco employees selected for transition to Accenture upon outsourcing of its retail accounting functions. She provided expertise on accounting issues and technical questions and managed up to 50 company staff on specific projects. She also served as the liaison between IT staff and retail site accounting teams for technical projects and issues related to PDI and JD Edwards-based BP system.  

Corby grew up along the foothills of the Wasatch mountains of Utah. With a whole lot of ambition and drive, she earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from the University of Phoenix while working and raising her two children. She also gave back to her community, acting as President of the Sandy, Utah Chamber of Commerce’s Women in Business. Corby now takes pleasure in exploring her hometown, Houston, TX, cheering on the Astros with her husband, and sewing for her granddaughters.

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Gabe OlivesPrincipal Consultant

Project Management, IT Organization, Retail Automation, Process Management, Fuel Management / Pricing / Logistics, Convenience Retail Leadership, Technical Standards and Interfaces, Legislative Affairs

Biography

Gabe Olives is a POS and payments guru and an undeniable industry expert in the convenience channel for technology, fuel management, legislative affairs, POS/BOS and payments.  As a Principal Consultant with Impact 21, Gabe has applied his industry savvy to many projects. He has engaged in transitions for a large acquisition of retail sites, a refinery, and a commercial bakery/commissary, with specific emphasis on the migration of accounting. He assisted in the implementation of a multiparty logistics consolidation project for a major retailer, supported a major technology company in a successful new product introduction, and engaged in EMV planning, certification, and execution.

Gabe’s knowledge, gained from his long history in both technology and fuels and his 30+ years in the convenience store industry, is an asset to the industry. He serves on the Board of Directors of Pennsylvania Food Merchants Association and is Chairman of their Fuels Committee. Gabe has been very active as an advocate for process improvement and technical standards including many speaking engagements at NACS and Conexxus. Gabe served as Chairman of Conexxus in 2015 and serves on the Board of Directors of PCATS, as its Chairman in 2009. In 2010 he was honored by CSN magazine as the Top Tech Executive of the Year. 

Gabe’s background spanned many aspects of the industry, including operations, marketing, and construction during his first ten years in convenience. He served as a senior executive at Turkey Hill Minit Markets, a best in class IT organization and division of the Kroger Company, responsible for petroleum marketing, information technology, and legislative affairs and in a senior position with Rutter’s for petroleum marketing. A self-described marketer with a passion for technology, Gabe advanced Turkey Hill’s processes to support all aspects of retail automation and guided the organization through the transition from major to private branded fuel operator. Over the years, Gabe has worked closely with most solution providers in the convenience channel as either a retailer directly or as the only two-time Chairman of Conexxus with experience in all aspects of retail technology.  

A Pennsylvania native, Gabe graduated from the University of Scranton. He takes pleasure in spending time with his family and giving back to his community through active involvement at Bishop McDevitt private high school in Harrisburg, PA. In his spare time, Gabe can be found working alongside his wife on their property, playing sports, swimming, or golfing at any chance he gets. 

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Jackie MaxwellPrincipal Consultant

Strategic Planning, Financial Analysis, Operations, Marketing, Site Selection & Development, Technology Implementations

Biography

Jackie Maxwell, Principal Consultant with Impact 21, has spent her entire 34 year career in the petroleum and convenience industry. She most recently served as Vice President for MFA Oil Company in Columbia, Missouri and was responsible for the convenience store division, consisting of 77 Break Time convenience stores. In addition to her work at MFA Oil, Jackie has been active in Study Groups for the past 9 years, serving as President of her study group.

Jackie has broad and comprehensive experience in selecting, developing and managing convenience stores in a variety of functions. In her leadership positions within MFA Oil, she developed strategic plans, managed site selection and property development, directed multi-million dollar capital investments, managed contract negotiations, and directed budgeting and financial reporting and review. She also has extensive experience in operations, marketing, merchandising, technology implementation and vendor relations at MFA Oil. 

Jackie has a passion for seeking out technology solutions to solve business challenges with an emphasis on visibility and accountability. She has been involved in piloting and implementing numerous technology solutions such as store accounting, POS, cloud based team collaboration, grocery integrations and e-learning solutions. Jackie has extensive experience in building teams and practices “Heart” Leadership.  (Honesty, Efficiency, Attitude, Respect and Teamwork).

In addition to her work with Impact 21, Jackie and her husband, Marty, own and operate a family farm in Missouri and have been married for 34 years. 

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Jason HipsherPrincipal Consultant

Strategy & Leadership, Organizational Design & Re-engineering, Cross-Functional Process Improvement, Technology Implementations, Change Management, Growth Planning, Customer Service

Biography

Jason is a man of vision, an operations leader, and change agent. He taps into his unique background which spans multiple industries - each centered on operational improvements and customer experience - in heavily regulated environments. As a principal consultant for Impact 21, Jason turns his keen focus on people, process and technology, based on solution-driven collaboration. He helps clients get the most out of technology while ensuring that customer experience remains a top priority. Jason advocates leadership development for his team while continuously striving to improve his own leadership skills. He has organized, designed, and driven change to processes and procedures critical to core business. He has been engaged in multiple mergers and acquisitions requiring significant growth planning and integration. 

As a senior executive with both privately held and publicly traded organizations, Jason has focused on setting strategic vision and subsequently leading operations and technology initiatives that drive growth and return on investment. He has shared his expertise of practical and technical experience in the healthcare, insurance, energy, payments and retail industries with clients for over 20 years. Prior to joining Impact 21, Jason served as a consultant to Justice Retail (Ascena Retail Group) helping them to implement and integrate a new ATG website and Order Management System into the business. Jason has also spent time assisting Rev1 with start-ups in Columbus, OH; helping them with business plans, market research, and venture funding. 

A graduate of The Ohio State University, Jason earned a degree in Marketing. He was born and raised in Columbus, Ohio, where he now enjoys time with his wife and three girls. He supports his teenage daughter who was born with a neurogenetic condition known as Angelman Syndrome (AS). Jason gives back to his community by volunteering for the AS Foundation, Special Olympics, and Big Brother Big Sisters. He is also a board member of Cultivate, a local start-up accelerator. When time allows, Jason loves to hit the golf course with friends and try a new craft brewery here and there.

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Jerald BarrettPrincipal Consultant, MBA

Strategic Planning, Brand Development, Operations Management, Procurement, Foodservice, Franchising

Biography

Jerald is a visionary and creative leader with extensive experience in strategic leadership, concept development, and change management.  He leverages a strong operations management background and a passion for excellence to deliver outstanding results in diverse, operational environments from retail, convenience store, healthcare and military channels.  

Jerald has developed unique programs to assist convenience store operators in effectively running foodservice programs including food safety, operational readiness, business metrics and analytics, consumer experience awareness and driving sales through local store marketing.  In addition, Jerald has created multiple employee and food safety operations manuals, designed multiple branded catering programs and developed operational systems and processes.  He has extensive experience in foodservice and restaurant design including overall facility layout along with kitchen and commissary design.  He is most adept on rapid turnaround of underperforming operations resulting in dramatic improvements in performance and profitability.

Most recently, Jerald served as a Senior Process Manager for Strategic Initiatives at The Britt Hunt Company, the parent company for TBHC Delivers, the largest distributor of Hunt Brothers Pizza with over 3000 customers in 14 states, and Pedestal Foods, a St Louis-based Contract Food Service Company whose portfolio includes Secondary and Higher Education and Senior Living Facilities.  In this role, Jerald served as project lead to successfully develop and launch new programs to convenience store operators and to create a culture of foodservice and safety.  

Jerald tapped into his expertise, relationship and project management skills building cross-functional teams for over six years at Sodexo Inc., a multinational corporation with primary business in foodservices and facilities management.  Jerald served as a Director of Food and Nutrition for multiple medical centers with direct responsibility for client and company budget, patient satisfaction, retail foodservice, patient feeding, and clinical nutrition management.  In addition, he served in the Government Services Division as the Area Operations Manager at Camp Lejeune, NC with direct operational responsibility for 15 dining facilities on three military bases.  In this role, he developed and implemented a front line manager training program, led improvement for district safety initiatives.  And was integrally involved in improvements to the commissary program, new facility design and the rebid process.


Jerald has extensive experience in franchise development including concept design, branding and launching growth initiative, menu design, franchise materials, operations / training program, equipment and product specifications and agreements thus ensuring brand integrity. He created a proprietary branded franchise restaurant concept and catering company from inception through construction and establishment as a viable multi-unit entity.

In Jerald’s early career, he served as a consultant and project manager for independent restaurants, QSR franchisees, food service distributors, and convenience store chains bringing food service expertise to the organizations for over two decades.  He provided design, development and construction support, planning and purchasing, comprehensive operational analysis. And action plans to increase sales, reduce cost and position business for sustained growth. Clients included franchisees of Moe’s Southwest Grill, Shane’s Ribshack and Bojangle’s.  He served as General Manager and Managing Partner with national chains including Ruby Tuesday, Red Lobster and On the Border with success in turn arounds, new openings and ongoing operational management and field manager at ChesterFried. 

Jerald has a MBA from Shorter University and a BS in Business Administration – Industrial/Operations Management from Auburn University.  He is certified in SafeServe and the Francorp Inc. Franchise Sales Training Program.  

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Jodi CurranPrincipal Consultant

IT Management, Customer Service, Implementation Specialist, Business Process Improvement, Strategic IT Planning and Budgeting, Employee Development

Biography

Jodi Curran, Principal Consultant at Impact 21, is a quality focused leader with over 20 years of combined experience in IT Management and Customer Service. Prior to joining Impact 21, Jodi led IT and Customer Service organizations at three software companies located in central Ohio. 

Jodi’s most recent position was Director of Onsite Implementation at EmergiTech, a public safety software provider, where she was a member of the Executive Management Team and directed all phase of IP 9-1-1 projects from SOW to Support. Jodi led the EmergiTech field engineering organization and completed 15 software implementations within a 10-month period.   

Jodi’s Customer Service and IT Management leadership spans several technology companies such as Cott Systems and Astute Solutions, where she led multiple teams as the Sr. Director of Customer Service and SaaS Operations and was a member of the Executive Management Team. Additional experience in customer service training at Xerox provided Jodi with the honor of working on an X-Team as a developer on the first knowledge base for the call center. As a Client Support Analyst at Liebert Corporation, Jodi successfully managed 16 software implementations within 12 months, supported a PC hotline for 2,000 users and provided database administration, including user activations and permissions.

Jodi began her career in retail as a Sales Manager for Lazarus-Macy’s, where she was quickly promoted to Group Sales Manager and relocated to Columbus, OH. She is a summa cum laude graduate of DeVry University with a bachelor’s degree in Business Information Systems and is currently completing her MBA at Ohio Dominican University.

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Julia HuffmanBusiness Analyst

Pricebook, Content Management, Collaboration, Project Management

Biography

Julia Huffman wears many hats at Impact 21. Julia maintains quality, consistency, proper formatting, and accuracy in content and documentation for both internal work and client projects. She fosters smooth collaboration and project management for the Impact team and clients through her support of the Impact 21 portal. Julia knows her way around Pricebook processes and technologies. She assists clients with pricing tasks, Pricebook system clean-up, new software implementation, and training. 

As part of her many varied roles, Julia has helped clients navigate through acquisitions processes, create SmartSheets, and adhere to proper protocol and required documentation. She has managed acquisition details, keeping records and meeting minutes to assure accuracy and compliance. She was instrumental in updating the 13-Step Merchandise Management Process, keeping it relevant and current.

Julia’s nearly 30 years’ practical experience in the chemical, petroleum, and convenience retail industries laid the groundwork for her wide-ranging roles. Prior to Impact 21, Julia worked for Pitney Bowes in outside sales, earning a sales award as one of the top sellers her first year. Julia served as Pricebook Coordinator for Speedway SuperAmerica, LLC, (SSA LLC), a joint venture between Marathon Oil and Ashland, Inc. She focused on retail automation for Pricebook management and store merchandising, managing daily Pricebook procedures for scanning and non-scanning stores. Julia created a user’s Pricebook department manual, trained new users, and handled store manager calls on pricing and product issues. She assisted a 600+ store chain in transitioning to an item level inventory system, supported the implementation of corporate level Pricebook, and maintained pricing and item setup for departments: candy, soda, grocery, novelty, and HBA. She also supervised the downloading of pricing to stores for all categories and all departments by various Pricebook specialists. She worked directly with Category Managers to set up items, discontinue items, and analyze reports and data, ensuring that margins and GP were consistently met. Prior to working at SSA LLC, Julia worked in customer service with BellSouth Mobility’s and Ashland Chemical.

Julia clearly applies her skills gained from her Bachelor of Organizational Management degree from Midway University in Lexington, Kentucky. Born and raised in Oklahoma, Julia now calls northeastern Texas home. When not chauffeuring their two active daughters around town, Julia and her husband spend as much time as possible on their houseboat. She occasionally finds the time to indulge in her passion for reading and travel.

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Keith SolsvigPrincipal Consultant

Strategic Planning, Food service, Brand Management, Category Management: Retail and Consumer Packaged Goods, Marketing Strategy, New Product Development

Biography

Keith Solsvig has over 20 years of experience in the petroleum/convenience, consumer products, retail and contract food service industries. Keith’s significant experience on all sides of retailing—retail, manufacturing, distribution and branded concepts—gives him a unique and valuable perspective. He helps clients develop food service and marketing strategies to grow their brand, build their traffic and increase sales. 

As VP of Marketing for Hunt Brothers Pizza, Keith was instrumental in driving the strategic direction of the company to grow their brand awareness, same store sales, new product development, digital marketing, training, merchandising, B2B marketing and sales leads. He has been involved with NACS as a member of the Manpower Committee as well as a writing articles for Convenience Store News and a speaker at industry events.   

Prior to Hunt Brothers Pizza, Keith was a Product Manager for Tyson Foods where he managed and developed the Grilled & Ready brand of fully cooked beef and chicken products. He was instrumental in growing sales for the supermarket industry and Walmart. Prior to Tyson, Keith was the Food Service Category Manager for ExxonMobil and the On the Run convenience stores.  He developed the breakfast sandwich, grab-and-go merchandiser, toppings bar and taquito programs to grow sales at double digits.  

Keith has additional Category Management and Food Marketing experience as the Food Service Category Manager at Thornton Oil Corporation and Regional Marketing Director for ARAMARK Campus Services. Keith is a graduate of the University of Arkansas with an MBA and of Miami University with a degree in Finance.  


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Margaret MerawPrincipal Consultant

Payments, Loyalty, Financial Services, Marketing, Program and Project Management, Requirements/Solutions, Operations Management, Quality Assurance, Contact Centers, and Fulfillment

Biography

Margaret Meraw’s 36+ years’ experience in the loyalty marketing and financial services industries serves her well in her role as a principal consultant with Impact 21. Margaret successfully strategizes with global financial institutions, C-stores, retailers, restaurants, airlines, and telecoms to implement large-scale loyalty, travel, and marketing products and programs throughout North America and the Caribbean. You would be hard-pressed to find a more resilient leader than Margaret, always striving to provide ethical and transparent consulting for her clients.

Margaret is best known in the industry for her expertise in payments and loyalty implementations and operations. Inspired by Robert Herjavec (Shark Tank investor), with his rise from meager beginnings and his support of new entrepreneurs, Margaret models both his drive and mentorship mind-set. Margaret lends her knowledge to customer loyalty professionals and marketers as a faculty member of the Loyalty Academy, providing loyalty education and certification.

As an executive leader at Kobie Marketing, Margaret managed large and diverse teams across multiple disciplines to effectively manage client implementations and integrations. She manages multiple aspects of business, from strategy, design, marketing, and operations, to social and digital technology platforms. Always cognizant of efficiency, Margaret worked to continually evolve and streamline processes and practices to help clients gain productivity. Margaret successfully strategized and implemented full-service Contact Center and Rewards Fulfillment operations.

Margaret formerly worked for RBC Royal Bank (RBC), the largest financial institution in Canada. During her vast and varied career, Margaret engaged in many transformational initiatives. She strategized and launched new product and loyalty programs for international credit card portfolios within Canada, the United States, and throughout the Caribbean. She was involved in the launch of EMV (Chip and PIN) within Canada, managed a 150+ member team of global vendors to support the complex payments industry, and acted as a leader in establishing Moneris Solutions, an acquiring and payments solution provider. She is well versed in the industry, starting out by helping to transform RBC’s Service Delivery throughout Canada, instituting global policies and procedures, and even working as a branch manager.

A native of Ontario, Canada, Margaret attended Athabasca University to gain her Masters of Business Administration and a graduate diploma in Management. It is no surprise with Margaret’s extensive international work that she loves to travel for pleasure. On the flip side, she looks forward to time spent at the family cottage. 


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Matt PytoshPrincipal Consultant

Process Management, Business Alignment, Change Management, Operations Management, Fuel Pricing & Supply, Learning and Development, Restaurant Operations

Biography

Matt Pytosh, Senior Principal Consultant with Impact 21, has over 30 years of management and consulting experience in the petroleum/convenience retail industry. Matt serves as a retail automation and learning and organizational development project manager and specializes in change management. He leads successful acquisition integration efforts and serves as program manager for retail automation projects. Matt most recently directed an internal project management office (PMO) for a global technology provider, launching a new solution market introduction. He leads large scale training and deployment programs for new back office system implementations with retailers of all sizes. Matt designs classroom training programs and curricula. He has extensive experience writing and implementing project plans, working with clients to redesign business processes, and working with large major oil companies to manage training and deployment of new technologies to company-operated and franchise classes of trade.   

  
Matt has held numerous senior level operations positions with SuperAmerica, Speedway SuperAmerica, Alimentation Couche-Tard, and Pilot Travel Centers.  His experience operating units includes hands-on and financial accountability for a variety of branded fast foods including Subway, Taco Bell, Arby's and Wendy's.  He managed the "war room" for Speedway SuperAmerica, responsible for setting retail gasoline prices for 2400 locations in twelve states.

Matt was certified as an industry trainer through courses at the University of Kentucky, Ashland Petroleum Company and Vanderbilt University.  He is a member of the National and Central Florida Association of Talent Development.  He is a member of Project Management Institute (PMI) and Project Management Academy. 

Matt has a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Kentucky.

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Matthew SaittaManager of Category Development

Category Management, Consumer Packaged Goods (CPG), Merchandising, Trade Marketing, Analytics

Biography

Matthew Saitta knows Category Management and Merchandising. Having worked on both sides of the fence–on the retail and supplier side–Matthew has a unique perspective and a deeper understanding of these service areas of Impact 21. With considerable retail and merchandising experience in multiple sectors, Matthew applies his expertise to both client engagements and internal Impact 21 processes and program development.  As Manager of Category Development, Matthew focuses heavily on category management and merchandising within CPG, convenience and other retail channels. 

Matthew applies John Wayne’s motto to both his personal life and professional attitude, “Tomorrow hopes we’ve learned something from yesterday.” Matthew helps clients focus on improvement whether working to identify potential opportunities, streamlining communication and support to facilitate excellent customer service, or conducting business reviews to appraise performance and goals. Matthew has the analytical foresight to help clients both learn from the past and look forward to reach their potential. 

Matthew has been drawn to the retail world from the start. He has come a long way from his first job as a stockroom attendant at The Cheese Box in Lake Geneva, WI, yet it did make an impression. He has remained in the retail industry in one way or another ever since. Matthew gained considerable experience in Sales Management and Field Sales Execution with a dominate Pepsi Cola bottler. He managed and motivated his sales team in large format retail accounts, coming out as top grossing sales manager in his market. He has extensive experience with trade marketing, distribution, sales operations, direct sales delivery (DSD), vendor contracts, product assortment planning, and sales analytics. Matthew’s skill set is not limited to one channel as his background encompasses department and specialty stores as well. 

Born in Wilmington, DE, Matthew was on the move, growing up in Ohio, Wisconsin, and Illinois. His parents’ inspiration to always strive for more and never settle drove him to succeed. He graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Merchandising, Apparel, and Textiles from the University of Kentucky. Matthew’s sense of adventure takes him mountain biking, skiing, camping–anything in the woods or on the water–whenever possible. He now enjoys these adventures with his new wife and dog. Close

Patti SaffordPrincipal Consultant

Pricebook Management, Retail Automation, Auditing/Data Integrity, Lab Testing

Biography

 

Patti Safford, Principal Consultant with Impact 21, leads business alignment and change management across organizations requiring strong integration of processes, technologies and accountabilities.  Patti's project management skills help companies lead site conversions, deployments and reset all policy and procedures for the implementation of corporate and back office technologies and learning management solutions. She designs curriculum including eLearning models and facilitates classroom training to align technologies and best practices.
  

Patti has lead multiple retailers, both large and small, in automating retail technologies and Pricebook processes to utilize ordering and replenishment systems to optimize inventory levels, increase margins and to move to item level inventory across many categories.  

Patti was formerly the IT and Pricebook Manager for Ricker Oil Company and has 22 years of experience in the petroleum / convenience retail industry. Her experience includes senior level management team participation, strategic planning and decision making for retail technology, developing roadmaps for system implementations with sustainable ongoing support processes for both corporate and store level systems.

She was responsible for project managing the implementation and all upgrade processes of store retail technology packages including Point of Sale (POS), Back Office, Home Office and Accounting. Her experience also includes: setup, rollout and daily maintenance of Central Pricebook systems, development and management of the day-to-day maintenance of a store support center, and implementation of RF vendor receiving with line item ordering, receiving and auditing. She was responsible for coordinating the development and setup of a data warehouse for Business Intelligence reporting.

Patti is a frequent speaker at NACStech and industry events.


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Scott DaviPrincipal Consultant

ERP System Implementations, Point of Sale Installations/Integrations, Loyalty Systems, Data Mart Systems, BI / Reporting Solutions, IT Management, Strategic IT Planning/Budgeting, Needs Assessment, Business Process Improvements

Biography

Never one to shy away from rolling up his sleeves and digging in, Scott Davi works side by side with clients on both short and long term projects. He brings along his strong business sense and Information Technology background (hardware, software, and management) to support those projects. Scott transforms business executives and managers into effective leaders for their expanding businesses, understanding their struggles and needs and providing them with the best process and technological solutions. Scott supports clients by putting in place the proper IT structure to support current business goals and growth into the future. 

At Impact 21, Scott conducted the research of all mainframe applications and identified relationships with outside databases and applications for a large petroleum company. He lent his tech expertise on the NCR-Invenco OPTIC Program and NCR EMV Certifications. He has been a key player in the acquisition needs assessment for a large c-store retailer.  

Scott has been around the block a time or two in the IT industry with nearly 30 years in various capacities and vertical markets, twelve of those years in retail. He has a background in supporting the Small to Medium-sized Business (SMB) Market and creating an IT support arm for many businesses with no internal IT department. Throughout his career, Scott has successfully brought business IT environments to new levels of productivity, cost effectiveness, and functionality and has been pivotal in bringing many companies overall performance to new heights. He has served as consultant for a retail startup and an IT Director for the retail chain, Swiss Farm Stores, in Philadelphia, PA. As IT Director, he completed a high-profile Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system implementation to deliver an end-to-end Infrastructure Point of Sale solution where minimal technology previously existed. Scott has managed IT projects involving accounting, inventory management, Price Book management, payroll/time and attendance applications. He implemented Data Mart solutions for labor, sales, and product catalogs, drove infrastructure installations for new store locations, and created main office links through Virtual Private Network (VPN). Scott also possesses a broad range of experience in the manufacturing and service Industries including health care, transportation/logistics, and accounting.

Scott attended Rutgers University, in his home state of New Jersey, to gain an MBA with emphasis on Management Information Systems, along with Associate and Bachelor Degrees in Computer Science. He extends his IT expertise to others as a member of the Association of Information Technology Professionals (AITP), Philadelphia Chapter. Scott devotes considerable time to his career, so when he gets the chance to spend time with his family he takes it. He manages to squeeze in a game of golf and brews his own beer and makes mead (honey wine) when he can. 

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Scott LambertPrincipal Consultant

Strategy & Leadership, Financial Planning, Accounting, Budgeting & Analysis, Systems Implementations

Biography

As a seasoned, results-oriented professional, Scott helps clients make sound decision based on their needs in all areas of finance. Clients benefit from his 30+ years in the petroleum and convenience store industry as well as his hands-on experience in all aspects of the finance function. Scott is a key player in helping convenience retailers and wholesale petroleum marketers implement new PDI systems, providing them solutions to their needs in retail automation, business intelligence, financial reporting, workforce management, and end-to-end fuel supply chain management. Scott was instrumental in guiding AEC (Sunoco acquisition) through their migration from FireStream software solutions to the PDI/Enterprise system.

Prior to joining the Impact 21, Scott was the Chief Financial Officer of Emerge Energy Services LP’s Fuel Division and was intimately involved in their Initial Public Offering. He previously served as the CFO of Insight Equity Acquisition Partners, LP, which owned and operated a fuel terminal and wholesale distribution business. In addition to his work in retail, Scott also served as the Director of PDI/InfoServe for PDI, an enterprise back-office, financial, workforce management and wholesale fuel distribution solution provider. Scott’s team at PDI provided outsourced accounting and technical services in the convenience store industry.  

Scott achieved his Bachelor of Business Administration with a focus in Accounting from Texas Wesleyan University. He is a Certified Public Accountant and Chartered Global Management Accountant. Scott maintains memberships of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, Texas Society of Certified Public Accountants, and Financial Executives International.

Born at Clark Air Force Base in the Philippine Islands, Scott grew up in Texas as one of twelve siblings. He still lives there today and enjoys coaching local youth soccer and landscaping around his home. He also devotes time as an advisor to Advancenet Labs, a non-governmental organization that brings advanced technology to the social sector, developing software solutions for nonprofits to solve societal challenges, such as hunger, human trafficking, and disaster relief.Close

Steve PattersonPrincipal Consultant

Payment Methods, Point of Sale Implementation, Technology Infrastructure, Enterprise Integration, Financial Accounting & Analysis, Banking and ATM Networks, Help Desk, Store Construction and Planning

Biography

Steve Patterson has a way of bringing technology to life for Impact 21 clients. Steve focuses primarily on alignment of financial and technology processes with business strategies. His strong background in payments and POS systems, including EMV, and the implementation of new retail technologies and business processes, brings a high level of expertise to the team. He specializes in connecting the dots between store operation and marketing needs to technical capabilities within regulatory requirements. His payments acumen brings best practices to the processing of new site setup and electronic payment methods. Steve helps clients break away from the mind set of “we’ve always done it that way”, leading to solid, innovative, cutting edge tools and processes.

As Principal Consultant at Impact 21, Steve assists PDI clients with all aspects of support at both headquarters and store levels, including training, auditing, reconciliations, and payments. He has engaged in several projects with clients that have implemented or upgraded to PDI Enterprise. Steve authors industry articles to share his insights and expertise. He acted as a member of CONNEXUS (formerly PCATS - Petroleum Convenience Alliance for Technology Standards), in which he served on committees working to solve key issues in the industry today. 

For over 20 years, Steve has been a leader in the consulting and convenience industries. He has held several positions within convenience store chains, leading accounting and technology implementations. Steve managed credit card accounting, IT support, and retail automation teams and led numerous cross-functional projects such as implementing new corporate accounting system, price book, co-branded credit conversions, loyalty programs, PCI and EMV compliance. When necessary, Steve has also provided direct support of retail locations, taking a very hands-on approach. Steve also worked with a major global POS system provider, helping modify the system and its processes for the US market and responsible for the design and creation of training materials and forecourt interface initiatives for the system. 

Steve’s strong work ethic became evident as he paved his way through school, working with contractors and laborers at a lumber yard, picking up a lot of construction concepts, along with a lot of splinters. All the hard work paid off and he achieved his Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from Drake University, Iowa. Since then, Steve has been certified in both Verifone Ruby/Sapphire/Commander and Gilbarco Passport. Steve has moved on from his small hometown near Des Moines, IA, settling north of Houston, TX, where he and his wife appreciate a good round of golf and both dining and preparing fine cuisine.
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