Steve Thorne, Chief Executive Officer
Steve Thorne is CEO and co-founder of National Marketing and Learning, or NML. He started his career in direct marketing 22 years ago in direct sales for True North, now a division of the FranklinCovey Institute. While at True North, he served as the trainer and recruiter for all sales personnel. In 1996 Mr. Thorne co-founded Professional Marketing International (PMI), a division of NML with one office and 15 associates. Mr. Thorne has overseen the expansion of NML from one company with a single core competency in direct sales to a vertically and horizontally integrated marketing company. The company has expertise in direct response marketing including television, radio, direct mail, live events, telesales, publishing, online marketing and website and product creation. NML has also become one of the nation's leaders in online distance learning, serving over 15,000 new customers every year. Mr. Thorne has been married for 22 years, has four children and lives in the Kansas City area.
Shawn Thomas, Vice President of Operations
Shawn is a 15-year veteran of the direct marketing industry. He joined National Marketing Resources, or NMR, in 2007 as director of business development and was promoted to vice president of operations in 2010. Previous to his joining the NMR team, Shawn was the founder and owner of Traffic Conductor, Inc., a firm specializing in lead brokerage and database monetization for the direct marketing industry. He also held other positions, including the following: president, Fortune Financial Systems, Inc.; vice president of marketing, Innovative Software Solutions, Inc.; and director of consumer sales, American Century Investments. In addition to his operational duties, Shawn remains actively involved in business and campaign development for the combined entities.
Shawn earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from William Jewell College in 1987, where he majored in communication and public relations.
Dave Lundgren, Vice President
Dave Lundgren is a vice president at NMR and oversees several lines of business in the infomercial and online verticals. It has been 12 years since Mr. Lundgren began in the industry as a sales consultant for PMI Midwest in 2000. He quickly excelled at sales and was promoted to team leader within three months of joining the company. While continuing to move through various leadership roles in the sales and consulting side of our industry, Mr. Lundgren decided to leave PMI and start his own company while continuing to partner with PMI/NMR on various projects. In 2006 he consulted NMR on the Dean Graziosi infomercial campaign. The Dean Graziosi and NMR team took the brand from a $20,000 a week campaign to over $1,000,000 a week within a year. Mr. Lundgren joined NMR's executive staff in 2007. Since that time, he has continued to germinate several infomercial and online campaigns. Mr. Lundgren lives in Liberty, Missouri, and is actively involved in civic and church activities as well as keeping up with his five beautiful kids and their busy lives. In his free time, he enjoys boating, skiing, concerts, fine dining and wakeboarding with his family and friends.
Kent North, Vice President of Fulfillment
After earning a bachelor's degree in philosophy and a master's degree in education, Kent North set out on an educational career that spanned 20 years, ultimately serving as the president and general manager for a nationwide proprietary school. Upon joining PMI in 2007, Mr. North introduced several key performance standards to the coaching floor. He coupled his quantifiable approach with training programs, rigorous testing, training, and a higher level of consultant and student accountability. Through implementation of these approaches and implementation of adult education methodologies, NML's customers experience greater success. His leadership has taken NML's educational programs to a new level.
Cindy Stockton, Executive Assistant to the CEO
Ms. Stockton joined NMR six years ago and serves as executive assistant to CEO Steve Thorne. She interacts and collaborates as a critical function with the CEO, executives, external partners and various departments within the organization. Her high degree of business acumen is essential when forging new strategic relationships. Ms. Stockton's attention to key dimensions of implementation and operation, as well as her understanding of interdependencies across the organization, assists greatly in the unification of business units. Prior to working at NMR, Ms. Stockton supported the CEO of a Forbes 500 company. Ms. Stockton has 15 years of executive assistant experience and holds a B.A. in business administration and art administration.
Steve Mortimer, Controller
Steve Mortimer is controller for NML and all its subsidiaries. In this capacity, he manages the financial strategy and operations of a company with fiscal revenue per year in excess of $100 million. He works closely with NML executives to tie financial strategy to operational excellence. Mr. Mortimer has over 15 years of experience in accounting and finance, in which he has developed a proven ability to manage, lead and communicate with all levels of an organization.
Prior to joining NML in June 2009, Mr. Mortimer worked for 10 years in the consumer financing and consumer tax industries. There, he led financial functions including financial planning, business planning and financial monitoring. Mr. Mortimer received his bachelor's degree in accounting from William Jewell College.
David Jones, Director of Client Services
David Jones' professional experience began with seven years of service in the United States Army. He also served for three years in the National Guard subsequent to Sept. 11, 2001. During his term of service he received awards including the Joint Service Commendation Medal, NATO Medal, and the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal.
Mr. Jones has 13 years of experience in call center operations. He joined Citibank as a unit manager in collections in 1999. He transitioned to customer service and sales in 2004 and was promoted to operations manager in 2005.
Mr. Jones has been with NMR since 2009, when he was brought on to be the customer service manager. He was later promoted to director of client services. Mr. Jones is responsible for ensuring that NMR customer service provides an outstanding customer experience and adds value to the business. He is a member of the Kansas City Association of Contact Center Professionals.
Cynthia "C.C." Christopher, Director of Seminar Operations
After more than 20 years in mortgage banking, C.C. Christopher joined NMR almost six years ago in order to better balance work and family. While at NMR she has managed many company project initiatives to include real estate, Internet, property management and seminar operations in NMR's offerings.
After catching the "seminar bug," Ms. Christopher discovered that that line of business had become her new passion! She is the resident expert on planning and managing seminar operations for NMR's external and internal marketing partners. Ms. Christopher believes in the "power of passion" in what you're doing. Balance between work and home, hard work and a positive attitude are what continue to matter most to her.
Brandy Jackson, Accounting Manager
Brandy Jackson received her undergrad degree and an MBA from Northwest Missouri State University. She has worked at NMR for 10 years. Ms. Jackson started out doing payroll and bookkeeping, which evolved into a management position. She is currently the accounting manager responsible for treasury management.
Mike Battey, Director of IT: Application Services
Mike Battey manages the group that supports the internal systems that NMR's associates use to enter orders, process payments and market leads. His team is primarily a software development team that writes all of the systems in-house.
Mr. Battey started working at NMR in early 2007 as a software architect to help design and develop Links, a lead management system. Prior to coming to NMR, he spent 14 years with a medical software company located in Kansas City. He has a B.S. in computer science from Missouri State University.
Mardy Rich, Director of IT: network services
Mardy Rich was hired in 2008 as the IT Manager over all PMI and NMR entities. He was promoted to director of network services in 2010. In his time with NMR, Mr. Rich has rebuilt the company's network, data centers and telephone systems to increase performance, efficiency and capacity and renegotiated contracts to save money and increase profitability.
Mr. Rich has been instrumental in NMR's technology space over the last 18 years. He holds degrees in computer network systems, information systems security and has been trained in FBI computer forensics. Mr. Rich has also built data centers for Internet Service Providers and streamlined carrier services. He has built web server farms that hosted 72,000 websites. He has consulted for Boeing, JetBlue and Delta airlines and many city governments for network security and data recovery procedures.
Jeff Lucas, Business Development Program Manager
As the business development program manager, Jeff Lucas is responsible for overseeing the operational and tactical aspects of bringing new business and offers to their launch point for NMR and its various corporate entities. He works directly with NMR's executive team to download project details and engage with the project managers to help ensure that the planning and execution of bringing new business and offers to the marketplace is done in an organized and timely fashion. Mr. Lucas helps facilitate communication, ensures necessary tasks are completed and ensures everyone is on the same page to successfully complete business projects. He also works directly with outside partners and vendors to ensure that they are effectively communicating as needed on projects they are directly involved with.
Ryan Ellefsen, Vice President of Merchant Services
Ryan Ellefsen, Vice President of Merchant Services, has been with NMR since 2005. During his tenure with NMR, he has held a number of management positions, including managing director of processing for NMR, PMI and other internal companies, and has been responsible for the growth and profitability of multiple companies under the NMR umbrella.
Mr. Ellefsen started National Payment Services, an agent company of Platinum Payment Systems, in June 2010. Under his direction, NPS experienced double-digit growth 15 out of 18 months until it merged with Platinum Payment Systems in January 2012. He now serves as vice president of merchant services for NMR and directs all operations, sales, and marketing for Platinum Payment Systems, which is a wholesale ISO of Power Pay and HSBC.
Mr. Ellefsen holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Brigham Young University and a Master of Business Administration degree from the University of Phoenix.
Kristen Kaminski, Processing Manager
Kristen Kaminski is the processing manager for NML. She joined the company in April 2003 as an executive assistant. During her time at NMR, Kristen has worked in multiple areas of the business including lead management, sales reporting, and fulfillment. She has spent the majority of her time within the processing department. More recently, Kristen has also worked as part of Platinum Payment Systems as a credit card agent. Her tenure with NML gives her a broad base of experience within the organization and payment processing industry.
Rebecca Cone, Project Support Supervisor
Rebecca Cone is the project support supervisor at NML. She is responsible for managing the entire project support team and guaranteeing that all team responsibilities are taken care of. Her team offers guidance to all project and product managers to help them establish and implement new projects and products. Her team assists with database setup, lead management, fulfillment coordination and so on. Ms. Cone started as a processing associate in 2008 and was later transferred to the auditing department where she soon became the auditing team leader.
Wyndam Reeve, Project Management
Wyndam Reeve works at NMR as the head of the project management team. He earned a master's degree in project management from Boston University and has previous work experience with DST Systems and the Department of Defense. Mr. Reeve has worked at NMR/MEB for eight years and began as a software developer working on client-facing systems at MEB. He later joined the NMR team in Kansas City where he developed the project management department and became its manager. His team supports NMR in its marketing, product development, lead management and other project support needs.
Matt Klusman, Client Services Supervisor
Matt Klusman has been working in call centers in various positions since 2003. He has been a customer service supervisor and trainer at NMR since 2009 and is primarily responsible for Internet-based products as well as continuity products. He developed and implemented the new hire curriculum for training new CS associates. Mr. Klusman also provides ongoing customer service and sales training for team members. He is also a member of the Kansas City Association of Contact Center Professionals.
Nikki Masterson, Human Resources
Nikki holds a B.A. in English with a minor in Spanish from the University of Missouri–Columbia and is currently pursuing her MBA through Northwest Missouri State University. She joined the NMR and MEB human resources team in spring 2009 and currently coordinates HR for both companies. Regular duties include payroll, recruitment, reporting and performance management, among others. Nikki also oversees the associate satisfaction committee and serves on the committee for a leadership training development program.
Lacey Kaser, Client Services Supervisor
Lacey Kaser graduated from Missouri Western State University with a degree in legal studies and worked at several law firms before joining the NMR team. Ms. Kaser has been with NMR for eight years, starting as a customer service associate before moving into a supervisor position. She is primarily responsible for the coaching customer service, seminar customer service and real estate products. She also provides ongoing training, feedback and coaching on customer service skills for team members. Ms. Kaser a member of the Kansas City Association of Contact Center Professionals.