2020-21 Connex Board Of Directors Ballot

The Connex 2020-21 Board of Directors Election is now open. Only current primary members of Connex are eligible to vote. An email with the ballot and voting link has been sent to each primary member of Connex. The voting deadline is April 3, 2020.

Please reach out to Brooke Pierson at bpierson@connexfm.com with any questions regarding the election or the voting email.

Multi-Site Candidates

(In Alphabetical Order)

Patricia Bacigalupo

Store Maintenance Director

Gap, Inc.

Biography

A part-time sales stint at Gap, turned into a 25-year career with Gap Inc. in stores and maintenance. Since 2010, I’ve been the Store Maintenance Director, currently overseeing a team of 30 and responsible for 2800 stores in North America. My achievements include technology enhancements and creating an SOP which has provided efficiencies and consistency for the team and building supplier partnerships which has delivered strong results. Fun fact: passionate Boston sports fan!

Candidate Statement

Our industry is changing and evolving at a rapid pace. Our roles as Facilities Managers and Suppliers are becoming more complex as the skills and support needed for a broader range of services in facilities grow. I was honored to be nominated and I appreciate your consideration to serve on the Connex Association’s Board of Directors.

As a Director of Store Maintenance for Gap Inc., and with a 25-year career in retail management and facilities, my professional experience and practical knowledge position me to contribute and deliver value to the Board through leadership, strategic vision and a collaborative mindset. For more than 10 years I have been an active and enthusiastic participant in the Connex Association, where I have gained technical and industry knowledge through the educational resources and networking opportunities that Connex provides. I have contributed by serving as Co-Chair for 3 years on the Membership and Networking Committees, attending and presenting at national conferences, attending and co-hosting local networking events, and submitting best practices for publication.

I am excited about the opportunity to serve on the Connex Association’s Board of Directors and help ensure that the association’s resources and offerings continue to meet the needs of our membership.

Michael Bowman

Director, Facilities, Environmental and Safety

Liquor Control Board of Ontario (LCBO)

Biography

Michael Bowman is the Director, Facilities, Environmental and Safety with LCBO. Michael has had many positions over his 20-year career with the Liquor Control Board of Ontario, a retailer of beverage alcohol with over 650 locations. The last 8 years have been the most rewarding as the Director of Facilities, Environmental and Safety. He is exceptionally proud of his facilities team that has successfully centralized services across a diverse network and implemented important environmental initiatives.

Candidate Statement

This past year has been a fantastic experience as an alternate member of the Connex Board of Directors and member of the Governance Committee, and I thank those that considered me to be a Director in last year’s voting. This year I ask the Connex voters to also consider my past years’ experience as I would love to continue to have a role in supporting our exciting new Connex brand and multi-site strategies.

I continue to bring a diverse cross section of experience and leadership with my over 20 years of multi-site management for a Canadian government retailer. I believe this brings something different to the Board and it is this unique experience that I offer in peer discussions, when listening to our members and collaborating with fellow Board members and Connex leadership.

It is an exciting time for our industry and association, and I appreciate your time in considering myself or any of the other excellent candidates.

Sean T. Coakley

Director of Facilities

Weight Watchers

Biography

I have been working in retail for over 25 years as either a retailer, or a service partner. It's all about the partnerships for me. Teamwork makes the dream work! When I'm not at work, I'm enjoying time with my wife and three teenage children. They are the center of my universe. Fun fact, I can't walk past a karaoke machine without singing.

Candidate Statement

I have been a Connex member since 2010 and have always been impressed with the vital work the association does in bringing people in our industry together for the benefit of all parties.

I am honored and humbled to be nominated to the Board, and know that that wouldn’t have been possible without the help of so many members of Connex, who over the years have shared their knowledge and experience with me, and supported and mentored me.

As someone that places a premium upon relationships, partnerships, and teamwork, I am proud of all that Connex does to further the development of those dynamic qualities that are so integral to the success of our industry. So much more can be accomplished when individuals work together, then when a person or business goes it alone.

So, I commit to you today that if elected I will focus on those three qualities to help Connex excel in providing an environment that will help all parties:

  1. Create and grow relationships
  2. Support and strengthen existing partnerships, and be conducive to creating new ones
  3. Foster a setting that is even more inclusive and supportive of teamwork 

Thank you for taking the time to read this. I’m grateful for the opportunity to give back, and through teamwork, to help make something good even better.

I would greatly appreciate your support and ask for both your vote, AND your partnership, in the coming years in assisting our Connex Teams’ growth to even greater heights!

Joel Elsea, RFMP, CFM

Director of Facilities

CURO Financial Technologies Corp

Biography

  • Marketing & Sales Manager for Republic Services, Northern Virginia. Largest Waste and Recycling Hauler in Washington, DC. area.
  • Air Capital Disposal-Founder / Owner. - Sold to Waste Management
  • Elsea & Petty HOA Management - Founder / Owner - Sold to Omni Property Management
  • Goose Busters - Founder / Owner
  • 40 under 40 recipient - Wichita Business Journal
  • In over 40 TV commercials growing up.
  • Attempted Stand Up Paddleboard from Bahamas to Florida in 2019.

Candidate Statement

I've been a member of PRSM / Connex since I began my professional journey as a young FM. I've made many friends in the world of facilities management in large part due to my association with Connex. Those friends have become family in some cases and have helped me both personally and professionally. I am forever thankful for all of those people and relationships. I've always been passionate about this profession and this association. This is a pivotal time for Connex and I believe our association has the ability to make a significant impact on our industry as a whole. I'd like to do what I can to further promote and hopefully help people feel as passionate about Connex and facilities management as I am and assist in taking the association to the next level. I'd also like the opportunity to help some of the individuals that have in turn directly and indirectly helped me and my career. And further strengthen and share the resources that Connex has brought to our industry with others who might benefit the most from them. I would be honored to gain your support and your vote to ensure member voices continue to be heard and Connex, The Multi-Site Facilities Network, continues to grow and flourish.

David Hughes

Senior Director, Store Care

Walgreens

Biography

Passionate, results driven and innovative facilities management leader. Over the years I've had the privilege of leading facilities, energy and environmental strategies at large-box, grocery and medium-box pharmacy national retailers. Over the past 10 years I've stood up new facilities teams for 1,000+ locations at SuperValu (now UNFI), launched the Target solar portfolio and am currently launching a 9,000+ location SmartBuildings program. In my free time I enjoy teaching K-3 graders how to downhill ski.

Candidate Statement

I am excited to be considered for a Board of Directors position with ConnexFM as a way to give back to the industry that has given me so much over the years. Organizations like ConnexFM provide invaluable educational, networking and other growth experiences for all of us, and it's critical to have a quality Board to ensure the mission of the organization continues for both new and experienced professionals.

Our industry finds itself at an interesting time, with large changes happening from both a technology and talent perspective. I believe it's critical we (both ConnexFM and the broader industry) embrace these changes and find ways to provide unique ways provide value to our many stakeholders, be they vendors, companies or most importantly customers that come through our doors. This drive for positive innovation is what I like to believe I bring to the table daily, and I'd love to be able to offer this to ConnexFM.

Finally, as a former Board member of other organizations, both industry- and community-based, I also bring leadership experiences that would allow me to contribute to the ConnexFM Board quickly.

Karen Shriner, Esquire

Sr. Real Estate Attorney

Weis Markets, Inc.

Biography

Karen's retail career spans 22 years and she has produced and presented numerous articles, presentations and panel pieces for the legal and store development communities. Prior to retail, Karen worked for the securities commission and for law firm divisions in real estate, mergers/acquisitions and litigation. In addition, Karen manages her own property rentals while supporting other landlords and small business with free legal assistance. Karen loves travel and being mother to Sydney, a college scholar-athlete.

Candidate Statement

I am honored and humbled by the nomination to re-join the Board after the absence that seems to come with life changes- like being an empty-nester and adjusting to a new employer. But for all the life change, some things are the same- like my passion and energy for the growth of the association and the store development industry. From my earliest days in the industry where I had the opportunity to meet and learn from industry icons, I knew this would be a lifelong passion. I was privileged to take part in the start of the PRSM transition, by receiving and giving counsel with my fellow board members to move to the governance model. To watch how those initial decisions led to PRSM's ability to rebrand as Connex and expand its breadth has been extremely rewarding. With my unique background in store development and operational support and armed with my law license, I can continue to be a strong resource to the association. As in my past term, I would focus on access to education at all levels. I recognize the talent shortage that all of retail is experiencing, whether it is skilled trades, technical experts or virtual reality environment. As an association, we owe it to ourselves and our communities to be loudly vocal about needs and opportunities. No less important is the need to continue the 'shout out' to increase membership. I would advocate for the value of increased professionalism through membership. Thank you for your support.

Supplier Candidates

Kim Goei

COO

FEXA

Biography

Kim Goei leads Fexa driven by a passion for innovation and genuine partnership. Kim began her career in retail, lending her leadership talents to Anthropologie, Reading International, Pier 1 Imports, and Virgin Group. Prior to joining the Fexa family Kim founded Goei Group, a boutique consulting group catering to facilities maintenance and technology companies’ growth initiatives. Kim earned her BA from UCLA and her Masters from NYU, and currently serves on the board of Connex.

Candidate Statement

This past year, I have had the pleasure of serving on the Connex Board of Directors as a Supplier Alternate. I did not skip a beat after being elected, and immediately dove in to support our strategic direction with my talented colleagues. Specific examples include: Vocalizing the importance of engaging new members in additional verticals to benefit all stakeholders; encouraging focus on a larger and more diverse pool of candidates with Connex Board and Committee candidates; and adding insight on the Connexion event initiatives, committed to ensuring we adapted quickly to member feedback. It has been an extremely rewarding experience, and I feel I have even more to contribute in my next term.

I have held executive positions at numerous companies, on both the retail and supplier side, and now serve as COO for the game-changing technology company Fexa. I bring fresh ideas and out of the box thinking to all projects and goals. I thrive off of the goals and value I can bring to others while always focusing on results. If I am reelected, I will continue to be committed to adding value to the Board with a vision of ensuring Connex supports the continual changing landscape of brick and mortar retailers and services companies. As I know first-hand the opportunities that exist on both sides, I will continue to find more ways of ensuring Connex is an influential voice and presses for win-win solutions for all shapes, sizes, locations and industries we serve.

Steve Hearon

President

BrandPoint Services

Biography

I have been President of BrandPoint since 2012, and we have grown from $9 million to $50 million. I started a painting business in College which led to my first job at College Pro Painters, then joined AAMCO Transmissions in 1998 and ultimately became director of Operations. In 2005, I joined CertaPro and helped grow their footprint from 140 to 450 locations. I cofounded a charitable foundation for suicide prevention, and I coach girls’ softball.

Candidate Statement

My name is Steve Hearon and I'm writing to ask for your vote in my quest to become a Board member of Connex. It was an honor to be nominated and I take the opportunity to represent my fellow suppliers seriously. I have experience serving on boards such as this one and I know how important collaboration and communication are in order to leverage the wisdom and experience of all of the members. I believe Connex should 1) be the premier platform for sharing best practices among maintenance professionals, 2) be a powerhouse of networking resources, and 3) be a place to go for information and education to enable self-improvement among its members. I feel my experience in leading companies, as well as volunteer associations will be quite valuable. One of my core values is continuous improvement and I feel everyone should be a constant learner in order to become a top performer. I gain great satisfaction from working on and with teams, leading teams, and helping people achieve their goals. I've accumulated some amazing relationships in the world of retail, and I pride myself in facilitating win/win connections among others. If you vote for me, I can assure you I will commit the time, energy, and passion required to make a difference. Thank you for your consideration.

Tom Kay

Vice President Sales & Marketing

ENTOUCH

Biography

A graduate of Southern Methodist University, Tom is a seasoned business leader and critical thinker. Prior to joining the ENTOUCH leadership team, Tom helped companies like Corrigo, Level 3 Communications and Nextel expand their horizons and increase their borders. An experienced executive who has a unique passion for technology and has the ability to rally entire organizations. Tom has been involved in Connex for 10+years. Fun Fact - Tom taught conversational English in Japan.

Candidate Statement

I am honored to be considered for the Connex Board of Directors. I have been a Connex member for over 10 years and I have seen - based on my involvement in various committees: Women in Action (WIA), Editorial, Best Practices, Board of Directors Nominating, etc. - the value Connex offers its diverse membership. I believe that my experience in the facility management industry as well as skills that i have acquired from over 20+ years in sales management would serve me well as a member of the Connex board as well as contribute to the Connex Board achieving the future goals and objective of the association. I admire the work of those who have made Connex what it is today and I would love to contribute - in some small way - to Connex's future success. Connex has a bright future and I want to be a part of it!

Mandy Rennehan

CEO & Founder

Freshco.ca

Biography

Mandy Rennehan left her hometown of Yarmouth, Nova Scotia, at 18 with a dirty hockey bag and an audacious dream. By 19, she founded Freshco.ca (not the grocery store!), Canada’s #1, full-service, reconstruction and retail maintenance provider operating across Canada and the eastern United States serving clients like Anthropologie, Apple, Banana Republic, Home Depot, Lululemon, Nike, Restoration Hardware, Sephora, The Gap, Tiffany & Co., plus many more.

Candidate Statement

I believe with extreme importance of diversity, the digital age and the systemic supply and demand issue in the trade industry we are experiencing, I bring a big tool box full of experience, credibility, with a little bit of personality to execute :0).

I am known in NA as the “Blue-Collar CEO“ as I am redefining the collar blue and changing the answer to “what do you want to be when you grow up?“.

My companies and I are huge advocates for females and minorities in the trade industry and breaking down the barriers and stereotypes that have created the perception that you are a second-class citizen unless you go to university or college.

Associations can fall into a very complacent, precarious place in the midst of revolutionary disruption and Connex is far from immune from this. I am excited to be a part of the Connex strategy and assist in taking the association to the next level. Thank you for your support and vote!

Rick Upton

National Account Executive

Identiti

Biography

Since July 2018 Rick has been a sales leader for Identiti, a national signage provider to the retail, hospitality, healthcare and banking industries. Prior to that, Rick was a sales leader for Miner National Service for 11 years. While at Miner he led the growth of the company from $17M to $276M in revenue through organic grow and acquisitions. For fun Rick competes in bicycle races at home in Portland, OR.

Candidate Statement

My name is Rick Upton with Identiti, a national sign company. I am excited for the opportunity to serve on the Connex Board of Directors to help equip us to better serve and support a more diverse and growing membership. Having served on other professional Boards in the past, including Board President, has prepared me to work effectively with other association members toward achieving our mission.

I have a long experience with PRSM / Connex, having been a member since 2007, attended numerous national and mid-year conventions, as well as attended and hosted regional networking functions. I’ve previously served on the Nomination committee interviewing Board candidates.

I’ve been characterized as a dynamic executive leader with a diverse business background of general management, manufacturing, distribution, warehousing, sales, small business ownership experience, public speaking and customer service; along with Fortune 500 pedigree.

My specific objectives for serving on the Connex Board are:

  • Help the Board increase the value of Connex to attract additional corporate and individual members as well as expand into other industry segments to broaden the exposure and opportunities for our members
  • Improve the effectiveness and value of the annual National Conference for both the multi-site FM professional and suppliers

I hope to be a strong and outspoken advocate to ensure that our membership yields positive returns; educationally, professionally and economically. Thank you for your support.