Operating Officers

Budd D. Berro
CEO and Ex-Officio Member
Private Directors Association®

Budd was named to his current position with the Private Directors Association® in September of 2021. Previously he served in the following capacities with the organization: Founder and Co-President of the Charlotte, NC Chapter; Chair of the Board Development Opportunities Sub-Committee; Vice President for Chapter Development; and member of the Executive Committee of the PDA Board.

Budd’s extensive professional experience includes the founding of a fractional CFO firm that focused on small to mid-size businesses before its customer base was merged with a similar organization; business director of a private school; and a risk manager for Citicorp’s North American trading activities and its global emerging markets corporate finance activities.

He has served on nearly ten boards, including non-profits, business alliance and economic development organizations and a residential real estate management company.

Budd received an undergraduate degree in economics from the State University of New York (Purchase) and a master’s degree in business administration with a concentration in finance from Columbia University.

Cindy Burrell 
Founder and Vice President for Sponsorship 
CEO, Diversity in Boardrooms

Cindy Burrell leads Diversity in Boardrooms where she consults with corporate boards and advisory boards. Cindy contributes over 20 years of executive search expertise with a special focus in recruiting and referring diverse director candidates who enhance a company’s growth, profitability, and social responsibility reputation. Currently, she is an Advisory Board Member for Skytop Strategies, which delivers high-content programs worldwide on topics such as Gender Equality in Boards; ESG; CSR; and Impact Investing. 

Cindy earned her BA from DePauw University and an M.Ed from Boston University. 

GoldsteinBruce Goldstein
Founder and Vice-President & Treasurer
Senior Director, Capstone Headwaters

Bruce Goldstein is a Senior Director at Capstone Headwaters and a co-founder of the Private Directors Association. He is a seasoned operations and financial advisor (CEO, CRO, COO, CFO, VP Finance, etc.) with 35+ years of experience in mergers, acquisitions, divestitures, corporate finance, general management, market expansion and franchising, including executive positions at Amherst Partners, MorrisAnderson, SALA Capital Corporation and PricewaterhouseCoopers.

GrybasPhil Grybas
Founder and Vice President for Financial Services
Chairman of the Board, Great Plains Communications

Phil Grybas is an experienced Board member having served as Chairman of the Board for a family owned telecommunications/technology company, as a Compensation Committee Chair and as an independent director for various non-profit organizations.  Phil is a Certified Public Accountant, a Certified Global Management Accountant, a Certified Global Business leader, a Governance Fellow of the National Association of Corporate Directors and a member of the AICPA.  Phil has served as a CFO for publicly traded companies, recently led and completed an M&A transaction, and is broadly experienced in International Finance, process improvement and financial planning/analysis.

Matt_HartzmanMatt Hartzman
Vice President and Chief Digital Officer
Healthcare Leader & Chief Information Officer, RedMane Technology LLC

Mr. Hartzman has spent over 35 years helping organizations innovate and achieve business goals through leveraging technology. He has held executive leadership roles in 6 consulting organizations spanning over 25 years, led an internet start-up, and spent 9 years as Chief Information Officer for the College of American Pathologists and TriCore Reference Laboratories. Mr. Hartzman also served as VP of Innovation while at the CAP.

Mr. Hartzman is a thought leader for not only his organization and their clients, but also the community at large balancing strong business and technology acumen. For the last 15 years, Mr. Hartzman has focused on helping healthcare businesses get healthier by applying technology appropriately.

Currently, Mr. Hartzman leads the commercial healthcare IT solutions practice at RedMane Technology, a 20-year-old systems integrator and custom software developer.

M_Jay_Heilbrunn_5v1M. Jay Heilbrunn
Founder and Vice President
President, The Distributor Board, Inc.

M. Jay Heilbrunn has worked in numerous company executive, business ownership, and board of director positions.  The focus of his work has primarily been with privately owned and family companies in wholesale distribution businesses.  Mr. Heilbrunn currently serves as Chief Operating Officer for Alliance Paper and Foodservice Equipment, a Midwest family owned and operated distributor of non-food products to supermarket and foodservice market segments. Mr. Heilbrunn serves on the Board of Directors of Top Notch Distributors, a national company that has distributed Architectural Door Hardware products since 1975.  Mr. Heilbrunn is on the Private Directors Association Board of Directors; a member of the Midwest Business Brokers and Intermediaries Board of Directors; and a member the Selfhelp Home of Chicago Board of Directors.

Dennis_Kessler1Dennis Kessler
Founder and Vice-President
President, Midwest Family Business Advisors

Dennis Kessler is the President and founder of Midwest Family Business Advisors, a firm that specializes in helping families to overcome the challenges inherent in mixing business with family. He advises clients on, succession planning, conflict resolution, and strategic planning. Dennis is the former Co-President of Fel‑Pro Inc., which was in his family for 80 years. He has served on  six Public and  Private Company Boards as well as numerous non-profit Boards. Dennis is a founder of the PDA.

LavinRaphael Lavin
Vice President for Membership Services
CEO and Managing Director, Standard Professional Services, LLC

Raphael Lavin, clfp, is the managing member of an independently owned leasing company that helps its customers get the best financing rates and terms available for additional capital equipment. He has a vast general knowledge of many industries and the underlying equipment needed to operate properly in those environments. He has worked in other family owned businesses and is aware of the challenges they present and the enigmas that they can be.

Marcela_(2)Paul Marcela
Founder and Vice President & Corporate Secretary
President, Governance Partners Group LLC

Paul Marcela is President of Governance Partners Group, a corporate governance services firm that specializes in providing external Corporate Secretary services to companies that seek support in attending to the corporate governance requirements of their Boards of Directors. GPG focuses on providing governance services to private companies, small to mid-cap public companies and not-for-profit organizations that may not have sufficient internal resources to practice good governance in a robust manner.

Diane M. Meister
Vice President and Chief Strategy & Development Officer
Founder and Managing Principal, Meridian Associates Inc.

Diane leads Meridian activities in advising privately-held company board members and leadership teams to both anticipate -- and prepare for – changing industry futures. The Meridian team specializes in using non-traditional, Scenario-Based Strategic Planning approaches to assist in development and implementation of important new client company Initiatives. A Meridian focus is on use of small “early bets” that can ultimately evolve to mitigate the most important enterprise risks and help achieve new mission-critical progress for client companies.

Diane has been a highly-rated speaker on “Re-imagining Board Oversight of, and Leadership Team Approaches to, Strategic Growth” at 5 industry conferences. As a member of PDA since 2016, she has guided launch of the PDA Model Board MeetingSM program and collaborated with the PDA CEO and board members in establishing and refreshing the organization’s strategic direction. With an Executive MBA from the Kellogg School of Management and a branding and innovation background, she has advised over 50 company leadership teams and the board of directors of 12 companies.

Shep_Pryor_1Shepherd G. Pryor, IV
Vice President for Resources
Principal, SGPiv Management Consulting

Shep Pryor, formerly SVP Deputy Group Head/Corporate Banking, Wells Fargo Bank, has served on the boards of 13 corporations and 3 non-profits, including financial institutions, retailers, manufacturers, and service companies. With 20 years of corporate banking experience he initiated a consulting practice, providing services to financial institutions on 4 continents. He has also conducted over 35 assignments as an expert witness on the practices of lenders and corporate directors and he taught finance courses to MBA candidates as a visiting professor at Keller GSM. He is currently Chairman of the Board of Ulteig Engineers, Inc. an engineering firm headquartered in Fargo, ND. He is also a director and audit chair of Devon Bank, a Chicago community bank, director and chair of the Compensation and Governance Committee at Equipoise Corp, a Minnesota-based truck dealership and a director of Land O’Frost, a manufacturer of quality processed meat products headquartered in Munster, IN. He is a founding member and VP Resources of the Private Directors Association. Shep has co-authored two books: Building Value through, Risk Assessment, and Renewal, and The Private Equity Edge. Degrees: MBA, Finance (University of Chicago Booth School of Business), and AB (cum laude), Economics (Princeton University).

SaundersMorris Saunders
Founder and Vice President for Legal Services
Partner, Levin Ginsburg

Morris Suander’s legal practice concentrates in business and tax areas, including, mergers, acquisitions and divestitures, business succession planning, deferred compensation, qualified and non-qualified employee benefit plans, and also in wealth preservation and estate planning. He deals extensively in the negotiation and preparation of commercial real estate and equipment purchase and sales agreement and leases, software licensing agreements and other business agreements.

012418_PDA_Detroit_Program_Speaker_VerstraeteRoy Verstraete
Founder and Vice President
Director; Retired CEO, Anchor Danly

Corporate director, senior executive and internationalist with 30+ years of operating leadership including 20 years serving on Board of Directors for private, public and startup companies. Currently specializing in Corporate and Advisory Board Roles, strategy and implementation, exec mentoring and succession planning. 

Wing_(2)Rebecca Wing
Founder and Chief Compliance Officer
COO, General Counsel, Corp Secretary, LW Lands Inc.

Rebecca Wing is an internationally experienced CEO, COO, General Counsel, Financial Services Expert and Private Company Board of Director (Qualified SEC Financial Expert).    Her global experience traverses multiple continents and countries to include Europe, Eastern Europe, United Kingdom, Canada, Latin America, China, Australia, Mexico, Middle East, BVI, the Caymans, and the Bahamas.     Ms. Wing is known for leveraging strong business acumen, strategic vision, and operations/risk management/legal/compliance knowledge to grow private and public businesses organically and through mergers and acquisitions and for her ability to identify legal issues and their potential impact on business operations, then mitigate those risks while achieving solution driven desired outcomes.