ACG Global welcomed 10 new members to its board of directors on Sept. 1. The group represents a diverse range of geographies, from Barcelona to Phoenix, and each new board member brings a valuable perspective on how to support the next phase of the association’s growth and to improve offerings for its 14,500 members across the globe.
Middle Market Growth asked each of the new members to describe their goals and priorities as a board member. They also offered insight into their wide-ranging activities outside of work, which cover everything from writing books to celebrating Mardi Gras from a parade float, to training for a half-Ironman competition.
Below is a snapshot of the background and interests of each of the 10 additions to the board.
FREDERIC BORRAS, PARTNER, MORERA ASESORES & AUDITORES
Home Chapter: ACG Barcelona
Frederic Borras currently serves on the board of ACG Barcelona and previously served as the chapter’s president. He is also a former member of the ACG EuroGrowth committee.
Borras hopes to help ACG to grow internationally, drawing on the strong international business network he has built during his time serving on international boards and working in both Europe and the United States.
Outside of work, Borras likes to attend the Football Club Barcelona soccer matches and to play tennis, in addition to skiing in the winter. He is also the author of several books. Most of them focus on technical matters, but in one he shares his experiences during his professional career with a Big Four accounting firm.
BOB BRICKMAN, CPA, DIRECTOR/SHAREHOLDER, POSTLETHWAITE & NETTERVILLE
Home Chapter: ACG Louisiana
Bob Brickman has been a member of the ACG Louisiana chapter since its inception and has served in a number of roles, including chapter president. He continues to serve on ACG Louisiana’s advisory board and has been involved in expanding the chapter’s activities and reach in the state.
Brickman is interested in continuing to bring all of the offerings of ACG Global into Louisiana through his work on the board. Local interest in national private equity markets has increased and ACG Louisiana has been a focal point for new activity and investment. Emerging companies in technology and life sciences are becoming more prevalent alongside Louisiana’s existing energy economy.
Brickman returned to his native New Orleans after spending 12 years working in Boston. He participates in all the city has to offer, including riding in a Mardi Gras parade and enjoying the annual New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival.
SHANE DUNN, PARTNER AND SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT, EY ORENDA CORPORATE FINANCE INC.
Home Chapter: ACG Calgary
Shane Dunn is a past president of ACG Calgary, and he has served on the board since 2012.
His goals as an ACG Global board member include building stronger connections among various chapters and sharing best practices, bringing these best practices back to Calgary and western Canada, and elevating the profile of the western Canadian market within ACG.
Outside of work, Dunn is an avid soccer fan and player, and he’s in the early stages of training for a half-Ironman with a goal of completing one before the end of the year.
DAVID HELLIER, PARTNER, BERTRAM CAPITAL
Home Chapter: ACG New York
David Hellier served as president of ACG New York from 2016 to 2018 and as a member of chapter-level committees focused on strategic planning and creating innovative deal-maker events, including the first-ever private equity to private equity ACG DealSource. He is also a founder of the PE-IB committee, and his firm is an active financial sponsor of ACG New York and a member of the ACG Private Equity Regulatory Task Force.
Hellier brings experience with best practices in governance, sponsorship and membership development to his new role as a member of the ACG Global board of directors. He hopes to introduce new event ideas and expand select programs across ACG, including women in leadership and diversity-focused initiatives.
Outside of work, Hellier is an avid fly fisherman—his favorite times are a good evening hatch on a small stream, casting dry flies to rising trout.
BRENT KULMAN, DIRECTOR OF BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT, FIVE POINTS CAPITAL
Home Chapter: ACG Charlotte
Brent Kulman joined ACG in 2006 and previously served on the ACG Charlotte board of directors. He is also a member of the ACG Public Policy Committee.
Kulman’s goal on the ACG Global board is to share the value of ACG within the middle market. He hopes to encourage attendance at events, including ACG Capital Connection and networking events at both a local and global level.
Outside of work, Kulman is a graduate of the Beer Judge Certification Program and, as he travels frequently, he can often be found after-hours sampling craft beers from local breweries. On weekends, look for him boating on Lake Norman, North Carolina’s largest lake.
MATT LAFFEY, PRINCIPAL, HERITAGE CAPITAL GROUP
Home Chapter: ACG North Florida
Matt Laffey has been a member of ACG North Florida for the past 25 years. He has served as chapter president and board member, and he’s a two-time chairman of the Florida ACG Capital Connection.
As an ACG Global board member, Laffey hopes to help further refine and disseminate the public policy message adopted by ACG over the past few years: That private-equity backed companies grow faster, create more shareholder value, and create more employment opportunities than their peers.
Outside of work, Laffey tries to spend any free time he can find with his family outside—not looking at a computer screen—and enjoying the water and beaches of Amelia Island, north of Jacksonville, Florida.
CHRISTINE A. NOWACZYK, SVP, BOK FINANCIAL
Home Chapter: ACG Arizona
Christine Nowaczyk is president emeritus of ACG Arizona’s board of directors, where she served for over 10 years. Nowaczyk founded ACG Cup in Arizona and built relationships with Arizona State University, The University of Arizona and the Thunderbird School of Global Management to advance the program. In 2015, she received ACG Global’s Meritorious Service Award.
As an ACG Global board member, Nowaczyk will work as a champion for the organization and staff to ensure long-term sustainability.
Outside of work, Nowaczyk supports high-quality early learning programs and honors the military each Veteran’s Day with the crew at the National Navy SEAL Museum in Fort Pierce, Florida. She can also be found playing golf or spending time on the beach in California with her family.
NATE OLSEN, MANAGING DIRECTOR, INSPERITY
Home Chapter: ACG Houston
Nate Olsen has been a member of ACG since 2013. During this time, he partnered with ACG leadership to develop and launch Insperity’s Capital Growth Program, an initiative designed exclusively for the benefit of ACG members. Insperity is an Official Sponsor of Growth of ACG Global and sponsors dozens of individual chapters across the country.
As an ACG Global board member, Olsen’s goal is to assist with ACG’s strategic planning process and advance the shared mission of helping businesses to succeed so communities prosper. He firmly believes that helping private equity and the middle market maximize value, minimize risks and hit financial objectives is what it’s all about.
Olsen was born in California but got to Texas as quickly as he could. He is a political news junkie, voracious reader and family man. He enjoys dragging his two young daughters away from their electronics and into the great outdoors, believes backyard grillin’ is a true art form (ask him for a bite of his Texas-style BBQ!), and he is beginning to question the intelligence of his wife for sticking with him for more than 25 years.
AARON POLACK, HEAD OF BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT, LION EQUITY PARTNERS
Home Chapter: ACG Denver
Aaron Polack joined ACG in 2014. He is currently a member of ACG Denver and serves on the ACG Global Corporate Development Officers (CDO) Task Force. Polack coordinated ACG’s first CDO peer-to-peer program in Denver.
Polack’s goal on the ACG Global board is to grow and enhance the CDO program in chapters across the country. He also hopes to encourage communication among all segments of ACG’s membership to ensure the organization is meeting their needs.
Outside of work, Polack enjoys Alpine skiing and cycling with his wife and two sons.
JOHN SWEENEY, MANAGING DIRECTOR, HILLIARD LYONS INVESTMENT BANKING
Home Chapter: ACG Kentucky
John Sweeney serves on the board of directors of ACG Kentucky and has been a member since the chapter’s inception in 2008. During that period, he served three times as chairman or co-chair of the Mid-South ACG Capital Connection, an event that rotates annually between Louisville, Kentucky, and Nashville, Tennessee.
Sweeney and ACG Kentucky’s primary goal is to bring more private equity and family office investment to the relatively underserved Mid-South region, which includes southern Indianapolis and Cincinnati at its northern border, and proceeds through industry rich cities such as Louisville; Evansville, Indiana; Memphis; Jackson, Mississippi; Nashville; Knoxville; and Huntsville and Birmingham, Alabama.
A transplanted third-generation New York Giants season ticket holder, Sweeney enjoys taking his wife and one or more of his four kids to at least one Giants away game a year—preferably in a warm water port.
Hollie Merrick is a regular contributor to Middle Market Growth.