From the Founder
Thank you for visiting NxtGen Nexus. NxtGen Nexus was designed through the lens of my family business experience. I was born into a family business, worked in the business, and watched my family sell the business because I chose not to become involved.
Big Men Shops, our family's clothing business, dominated my childhood. We lived across the street from my cousins who were in the family business. My first job at five years old was being the Security Guard during Christmas shopping season with lots of BIG customers. Every Christmas Eve, we'd go to the same Italian restaurant because the portly Santa Clause was one of our customers.
After college, I went into a Buyer's Training program at Macy's to prepare for the family business. However, I wasn't sure that I should go into the Family Business. Unfortunately, I didn't have any resources or mentors to help guide my decision. It never occurred to me that there were other people dealing with similar issues regarding their family business. Ultimately, I didn't go into the family business. Sadly, we sold it and its legacy.
Many years later, I was asked to speak at a Family Business Conference. It was at that point, I realized that nobody was addressing the issues that I grappled with decades ago. So we decided to take up the challenge.
NxtGen Nexus’ premise is that growing up in a Family Business or in a Family Office is strange. Even stranger is that Family Business comprises 80% of the world economy...but no one really talks about it.
We believe that if we can bring Enterprising Family NxtGens together, they can have a tremendous impact on their own lives, their family businesses, and local/global communities.
Thanks for checking out NxtGen Nexus. We're building a Family Business Community and we'd love you to be a part of it.
Family Business Rules!
Why Family Businesses Matters
Family Owned Businesses are recognized as important and dynamic participants in the world economy:
- Family-controlled firms now make up 19% of the companies in the Fortune Global 500, which tracks the world’s largest firms by sales. That is up from 15% in 2005. (McKinsey 2014)
- There are 5.5 million family businesses in the US. (FEUSA, 2011)
- Family owned businesses contribute 57% of the GDP and employ 63% of the workforce (Family Enterprise USA, 2011)
- 24 percent of family businesses are led by a female CEO or President, and 31.3 percent of family businesses surveyed indicate that the next successor is a female. Nearly 60 percent of all family owned businesses have women in top management team positions (Mass Mutual American Family Business Survey, 2007).
Successful family firms embrace a sense of stewardship and fiscal responsibility. Their advantages over other business entities in their focus on the long term, their loyalty to their community, their commitment to quality (which is often associated with the family name), and their care and concern for employees.
Family Businesses also face a unique set of management challenges stemming from the overlap of family and business issues. As a result of these challenges, 40% of U.S. family-owned businesses transition into a second-generation businesses, approximately 13% are passed down successfully to a third generation, while 3% survive to a fourth or beyond. (Businessweek.com, 2010)
Dr. Keri Ohlrich
UNITED STATES - Dr. Keri Ohlrich has led an extensive career as an outcome focused business executive in her 20+ years working in the HR field. She is the CEO and co-founder of Abbracci Group, the co-author of the book, The Way of the HR Warrior, and the co-host of the podcast reCHARGE® Your Life.
At the heart of Dr. Ohlrich’s work is to improve the environment of organizations which in turn improves the lives of employees. Whether it is coaching and training leaders, performing cultural assessments or helping develop HR professionals into HR Warriors, she wants all to reach their potential. Dr. Ohlrich has been featured in HR and business industry articles, interviewed on multiple podcasts and spoken at numerous events in the United States and internationally.
Dr. Hania Hammoud
Hammoud Law Firm
LEBANON - Hania Hammoud holds degrees including Doctor of Laws, Lawyer and a Certified Family Business & Wealth Advisor. She began her career path as a Lawyer in 1995. Her legal practice was concurrent with 12 years of experience of teaching law, coordinating and co-authoring the academic legal curriculum literature in professional schools. She developed the legal model of the family business based on the four-circle ecosystem theory by adopting a multidisciplinary transnational comparative study between the common law system and the civil law systems.
NIGERIA - Nike Anani is a Mentor to NextGens on Entrepreneurship and Leadership. She helps NextGens become effective change agents in their Family Enterprises. She helps NextGens become change creators: to identify and implement new opportunities that propels the Family Enterprise. She has almost a decade of experience working in African family businesses, both as a co-founder and separately as a next generation family member executive in my parents’ businesses and Family Office. Prior to that I worked at Deloitte UK in Corporate Tax International.
Dr. Meshie-Mai Ronit Lami
Dr. Lami comes from a family business background, giving her both a personal and professional understanding of the challenges faced by her clients.
Legacy Connections Films
UNITED STATES - Arielle produces and directs documentary films for HNW families to reflect on their history, truths, shared values and vision for the future. Her clients tend to be interested in both their family history and the impact that it has on their lives and future generations. Since 2005 when she founded her company, most of her clients are connected to a family business or a family office or both. She has helped them to connect with the invaluable stories that make up the true legacy of a family beyond their financial wealth.
Arielle is the producer/director of the award-winning documentary series Belonging in the USA: Stories from our Neighbors. The first film in the trilogy, The Story of Michael D. McCarty was a 2019 official selection at the Pan African Film Festival, the largest Black film festival in the US. Arielle was named to The Independent Magazine’s List of “10 Filmmakers to Watch” in 2018 for the Belonging series. In 2012, she won a Hugo Television award for her 6-part public television series, Belonging in Boulder: Unexpected Stories from Your Neighbors.
Provenance Capital Group
UNITED STATES - Logan Yonavjak is the Co-Founder & Managing Director at Provenance Capital Group financial services firm that focuses on allocating capital into regenerative natural resource enterprises. She is a financial services professional, social entrepreneur, author, and angel investor. I’m incredibly passionate about building businesses and guiding capital in ways that replenish, restore, and sustain our social, environmental, and economic systems to advance a more holistic future for all.
Liquid Gold Consultants
AUSTRALIA - Susanne Bransgrove is a family business advisor who is passionate about creating sustainable futures for family businesses. She is also the Founder of Women in Family Business (WIFB) Forum Groups where women can share their perspective and to support each other.
UNITED STATES - Mr. Churchward is a capital markets professional with a career spanning more than 25 years. Since graduating Brown University with an Engineering Degree, Mr. Churchward has been working in the commercial real estate industry as institutional lender, sale/leaseback buyer, developer and advisor. Today, Mr. Churchward is working with former colleagues and partners seeking opportunities for attractive risk-adjusted returns in either an equity or debt position secured by commercial or residential property nationwide.
Inovagencia Consultants; FDC (Fundação Dom Cabral)
BRAZIL - Renata Barcelos is the founder of Inovagencia Consultant, a firm that is oriented to the development of ambidexterity and dynamic innovative cultures in traditional companies, especially family business. She develops transformation consulting projects for companies in different sectors, including the use of agile methodologies, OKRs and business modeling. Renata serves a mentor to startups and family successors who seek to develop innovative skills. Since 2008, she has been Working since 2008 FDC (Fundação Dom Cabral) one of the major business schools in Brazil. Renata has a degree in civil engineering, and is a PhD in Business Administration (UFMG - Federal University of Minas Gerais)
UNITED STATES - As Founder, CEO, and Chief Mentor of ThreeEQ, a family-owned, premier education and global business advisory firm, Jason Ma is passionate about guiding and producing impactful, compassionate, next-generation leaders and about rainmaking for and advising select (tech) companies, family businesses, and family offices for next-level success. Jason is the critically acclaimed author of Young Leaders 3.0: Stories, Insights, and Tips for Next-Generation Achievers, and is the former Forbes contributor on Mentoring Young Leaders for elite college admissions, innovative higher education, next-gen leadership, and entrepreneurship success (1.5M+ views).
UNITED STATES - Craig Berger has been writing and editing web content since S E O were just three random letters of the alphabet. Since graduating from USC with a Master’s degree in Professional Writing, he has written, edited, and curated compelling web content across a wide range of digital platforms, including articles on independent film production for NoFilmSchool.com, education content for Yahoo! Education via Vantage Media, and medical and aesthetic website content with digital marketing powerhouse Urge Interactive.
When Craig met Allen Esrock he was instantly intrigued by his concept for NxtGen Nexus and looks forward to helping make it the number one site for the next generation of Family Business owners and other professionals who are looking to find their place in the family business to connect.
UNITED STATES - Cheryl Brooks is a marketing professional with extensive experience in all facets of the marketing universe and specializes in developing and executing marketing and branding strategies that help launch, position and grow businesses. She’s been an active part of producing campaigns for education, consumer products, television, music, sports and film on and offline. During her career she has handled publicity, executed promotions, produced special events, created digital sites, developed social media campaigns and negotiated highly successful partnerships.
Throughout her career, Cheryl has worked for DreamWorks SKG, Sony Pictures Entertainment, Disney Consumer Products, NBC/Universal, UCLA Extension and the NFL. She began her career in film marketing where she oversaw campaigns for crowd pleasing and award-winning films. She’s a proud auntie and chocolate lover with a flair for interior design.
UNITED STATES -- Natalie is the Director, Center for Individual and Organizatioal Performance at Eisner Amper. She is a coach, consultant and mediator specializing in work with high-net-worth clients. She is a practitioner of neuroscience has earned additional certifications in a number of personality and preference assessments that help her clients build their communication repertoire as well as implement succession planning and other strategies to strengthen their family’s platform
Natalie is a Faculty Member, Mentor and Board Member of the Family Firm Institute and a seasoned university instructor who has designed curriculum. She is a certificate holder in Advanced Family Advising and Advance Family Wealth Advising. Over the years, she has earned additional certifications in philanthropy, happiness studies, resilience, behavioral finance, and various coaching methodologies.
UNITED STATES -- Noelle Valentino’s career in the art world has spanned institutions including the Smithsonian, Christie’s auction house, The Getty Museum and UCLA. Presently she is the Department Manager for Trusts and Estates at John Moran Auctioneers, a role that combines business development and appraisal services.
Noelle serves as a personal property appraiser and auction house advisor to attorneys, fiduciaries, and CPAs. Noelle frequently reviews art collections, decorative objects, jewelry and more throughout Southern California and beyond. She also contributes to the company's appraisal division, writing the formalized documents required for insurance, charitable donation, estate tax and more.
Noelle is an active participant in an array of organizations for professionals in the trusts and estates sector, serving as the current board of directors secretary for the Fiduciary Round table in San Gabriel Valley, as well as a member of the Beverly Hills Bar Association, Los Angeles Estate Planning Council, Citrus Estate Planning Council and Provisors. She is also the board secretary of Art Muse Los Angeles.