Ben currently teaches International Business at the Sellinger School of Business & Management, Loyola University of Maryland. He also mentors startup and growth companies, independently, and in support of both the Maryland Technology Development Corporation (TEDCO) and the Maryland Center for Entrepreneurship (MCE) and provides research and proposal development support to IOS Partners, Inc., an international development and financial consultancy with headquarters in Miami, FL.
Ben Cruz is a product innovation, business development, and marketing professional with experience spanning both products and services, in domestic and international markets, and with companies ranging from startups through Fortune 100.
Ben’s career began at Panelfold, Inc. managing export sales, international licensing, and knowledge and technology transfer. A year after being recruited by Black & Decker / DEWALT to run marketing throughout Latin America and the Caribbean, he was tapped to lead the development and marketing of a global range of power tools for the company’s newly formed International Group. At B&D, Ben led the brand transition of their small household appliance product range from the GE to the B&D brand and the transition of the power tools brand from B&D to DEWALT in overseas markets.
At Noise Cancellation Technologies (NCT) Ben helped the company raise their Series B financing, co-led the formation of an international consortium to fund the development of active noise control systems for the electric utility industry, and ultimately sold the business unit.
Ben left NCT to start-up Synchromedia, LLC – an information services company for the mobile communication and travel & hospitality industries – where he struck a distribution partnership with Motorola growing to become the most popular service delivered over the iKnoTM mobile platform. The business plan for his second venture – Demand ID Systems – resulted in $19.5MM in venture financing to support a ground-breaking market intelligence and predictive analytics system for the live entertainment events industry. Demand ID was, perhaps, the first company formed to leverage the power of both crowd-sourcing and crowd-funding.
In 2009, Ben was recruited by Laureate Education, Inc. to oversee product management and marketing – leading cross-functional teams in the development and marketing of online bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degree programs in the Management and IT domains.
Ben currently mentors startup and growth companies, independently, and in support of both the Maryland Technology Development Corporation (TEDCO) and the Maryland Center for Entrepreneurship (MCE). He also provides research and proposal development support to IOS Partners, Inc., an international development and financial consultancy with headquarters in Miami, FL.
Ben holds a Master’s degree in International Management from The Thunderbird School of Global Management.
Based upon his many years of experience, high level contacts, and broad industry knowledge, Dr. Rappoport uses his exceptionally strong background in both business and technical development to provide guidance in the development and marketing of Internet based systems. He independently conceived of and oversaw the development and marketing of Easy Router, one of the first Software as a Service (SaaS) for Internet based vehicle routing. As Director of Business Development for RouteSmart, a GIS based routing and scheduling system, in two years, he developed the market for an innovative vehicle routing product for the utility, municipal government, solid waste collection and delivery industries into a $2 million business. He has initiated strategic alliances for third party sales and has created foreign sales arrangements. Dr. Rappoport has a Doctorate in Operations Research. Among his technical accomplishments, he has directed the development of an airlift scheduling and routing algorithm and supported the US Post Office in the analysis of a dynamic queuing process. Articles on airlift scheduling were finalist for the Koopman Prize (best military operations research paper). He supported the US Post Office in the analysis of a dynamic queuing process. He was an early recipient of a Small Business Innovative Research Grant (SBIR). He has taught graduate level Operations Research courses, at what is now, the Robert H. Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland. He has authored numerous papers on such diverse subjects as life cycle costing, decision aids, logistics applications of GIS and airlift scheduling. As Chair, he currently oversees the services provided by the Greater Baltimore Chapter of SCORE.
Directly Related Experience
Bare Computer, LLC
- Tried to identify and develop a market for applications of operating systemsless software based upon technology developed at Towson University.
2001 – Present
- Marketed to small and medium fleet operators TourSolver, an inexpensive vehicle routing and scheduling software package.
- Provided business development expertise to the Institute of Information Technology
- Explored market for e-training and e-learning products for Infomatics.
- Marketed innovative wireless Internet concepts for retail industries to such companies as Verizon Wireless and Dunken Donuts.
- Negotiated joint development agreements.
- Applied for patent for wireless security device for the taxi and courier industry
Descartes Systems Group (through acquisition of Lightstone Group)
General Manager for Easy Router:
- Conceived of, and oversaw the design and development of an Internet based vehicle routing system (ASP).
- Managed developers and contractor support in creation of the ASP
- Created marketing and sales organization
- Responsible for P&L
- Marketed to large logistics companies such as Penske and TeleTrac.
- Conceived of and pursued development of routing ASP.
- Provided consulting on GIS applications for business including needs assessment, data requirements, and implementation for GIS World, TeleAtlas Inc., Howard County Association of Realtors, and Carlton Computer Services, Inc.;
- Provided logistics consulting to Roadshow International Inc, News Electronic Data, Inc., and Florida Power and Light;
- Analyzed life cycle costing for Lockheed Martin;
- Evaluated routing and scheduling algorithms for Logistics Systems Engineering, Inc. and worked with their client, SeaPak.
- Marketed RIMMS, a routing software package from the Lightstone Group, to the utility industry for field service and meter reading.
Distinct Management Consultants
Director of Business Development
- In 2 years, created a $2 million/year market for RouteSmart, a route optimization system. Sold system to such clients as:
Atlanta, GA — Baltimore Gas and Electric
Charlotte, NC — Consolidate Edison of New York
Dade County, FL — Dow Jones
Federal Express Fresno, CA
Houston, TX — National Fuel Gas
News Electronic Data — Nevada Power Corporation
Philadelphia, PA — Public Service Electric and Gas
San Diego, CA — Western Disposal
- Managed the development of an aircraft routing and scheduling system for the Military Airlift Command. Responsible for P&L, hiring/firing.
- Developed dynamic queuing models for the U. S. Postal Service’s retail-planning model.
- Marketed routing services to FedEx, UPS and RPS.
- Oversaw programming effort to provide computer based donor registration system for Red Cross.
Summit Research Corporation
- Directed a team of analysts and programmers in the development of tactical display products.
- Recipient and Principal Investigator of a Small Business Innovative Research Grant from the NIMH.
Robert H. Smith School of Business, University of Maryland
- Taught graduate quantitative courses to doctoral and MBA students.
Howard Community College
2007 – 2009
- Mentored and taught class on technology transfer.
Neighbor Ride, Inc.
2003 – 2012
Founding Director, Member of the Board of Directors
- Helped guide the founding and development of a non-profit organization that provides supplementary transportation for seniors in Howard County, MD
District Director for Maryland
Chair Greater Baltimore Chapter
2003 – Present
- Provides assistance to small businesses on business plans, marketing plans, startup and financing
- Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences
- American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics former Chairman, LighterThanAir TC
- “Get Lost”, Business Geographics, April 1995.
- “Getting There is as Important as Being There”, Business Geographics, January 1995.
- “A Transportation Problem Formulation for the MAC Airlift Planning Problem”, Rappoport, H., Levy, L., Toussaint, K., Golden, B., Annals of Operations Research, 50, 505523, 1994.
- “More Efficient Collection Using Computerized Routing”, Proceedings, 32nd Annual International Solid Waste Exposition, August 1994.
- “Estimating Loads of Aircraft in Planning for the Military Airlift Command”, Rappoport, H., Levy L., Golden, B., and Feshbach, D., Interfaces, 21 (2), 6378, 1991 (Koopman Prize finalist).
- “An Airlift Planning Algorithm”, Rappoport, H., Levy, L., Golden, B., and Toussaint, K., Interfaces, 22 (3), 7387, 1992 (Koopman Prize finalist).
- “Computerized Neuropsychological Assessment”, (coauthor), Psychopharmacology Bulletin, Vol.23, No.2, 1987.
Select Committees and Presentations
- “Neighbor Ride”, Transportation Research Board, January 2007
- Steering Committee, Business Geographics ’95 – ’99
- Transportation in GIS Workshop, Business Geographics ’96 Conference, May, 1996
- Workshop on Computerized Routing, 32nd Annual International Solid Waste Exposition, August 1994.
- “Computerized Routing in a GIS” Business Geographics ’94 Conference, June 1994.
- Panel on routing software, ETAK Users Conference, October 1993.
- “The Use of GIS for Meter Reading”, 14th Annual National Meter Reading Conference, June 1993.
- “Computerized Routing in a GIS”, 1992 Towson State University Geographic Information Systems Conference and Workshop, March 1992.
- Panel on Business Applications of GIS, 1991 Towson State University Geographic Information Systems Conference and Workshop, March 1991.
- “A Deliberate Planning Algorithm for the Military Airlift Command”, (coauthor), Operations Research Society of America, Washington, DC, April 26, 1988.
D.Sc. Operations Research, George Washington University,
Dissertation “An Optimization Technique for a Multitime Period Spares Provisioning Problem”
MS Physics, University of Maryland
BS Physics, Stevens Institute of Technology
Currently Ray is Zone Marketing Manager at Subaru of America
“Kaizen” & “Continuous Improvement.” This philosophy has been the driving force throughout my professional career and personal life and is something I strive for everyday in my work life and personal relationships.
My mission is to constantly be on the lookout for ways to improve the efficiency, effectiveness and creativity for my business and life solutions.
- Develop events and experiential campaigns communicating brand truths while bridging an emotional connection between the brand and consumer.
- Leveraging dealer digital marketing initiatives including SEO, reputation management, behavioral targeting and re-targeting and website consultation.
- Identifying, developing and promoting talent in the organization.
- Simultaneously able to achieve results and build relationships.
- Arriving at the project vision, under budget and ahead of schedule.
Responsible for all aspects of creating and executing zone wide off-line and on-line initiatives with 50 dealers building brand awareness, incremental sales and market share for Subaru. Specifically,
Responsible for installing “Zero Moment of Truth” principles within the dealer body within a four state area. Specifically, creating dealer website customization, search engine optimization, managed paid search,social media / reputation management and email content consultations.
Responsible for creating and managing optimized dealer advertising campaigns that increase digital relevancy, incremental sales and lower advertising expenditures.
Planning, development and execution of brand events involving on-line and off-line solution integration at the zone, regional and national levels.
Responsible for development and management of fleet accounts for the zone.
Retired Special Events Manager, Howard County Recreation and Parks.
Manager – Wine in the Woods Festival. First user of VoMaSmart product.
Ann Combs is the Volunteer and Special Projects Manager for Howard County Department
of Recreation and Parks. She has been in this position since 2011. Prior to this Ann was
the Volunteer Coordinator for all of Recreation and parks. Ann has been involved in the
field of recreation and parks for 19 years having worked in the special events section of
recreation and parks prior to moving into volunteer management. Ann received a BA degree from the University of Maryland in Communications.
Ann serves in several volunteer committees, including previous secretary of the Howard County Association of Volunteer Administrators and past chair of Volunteer Center Serving Howard County and current member of the advisory board.
Barb is the Coordinator for Special Projects at Partners In Care Maryland, a time
exchange non-profit supporting older adults aging in place.
In this ad hoc position she has the unique opportunity to manage the website and
social media as well as being an ambassador and advocate in the community.
She is passionate about service and collaboration and is a Volunteer Maryland and
Barb home schooled for 15 years and is masterful at sharing and coordinating resources.
She holds a Masters of Arts in Human Development and certificates in Volunteer Management, Social Media for Business and Managing Social Media Platforms.
Owner, Christopher C Tsien PC
Chris’s law practice focuses on corporate planning, commercial transactions,
commercial real estate, creditors’ rights and bankruptcy, and other general business
He is an auditor for the Circuit Court for Howard County and co-authored a publication on
Maryland foreclosures and protecting security interests for the National Business Institute.
Chris is a member of the Sunrise Rotary Club of Ellicott City and on the Board of Bicycling
Advocates of Howard County. He also served on the Board of Trustees of the
He is an alumnus of Leadership Howard County and the former
President of the Columbia Business Exchange.
In his spare time, Chris rides his bicycle a few thousand miles each year and fervently follows Hopkins lacrosse.
Terry Hasseltine was hired as the Executive Director of Maryland Sports in July 2008. In early 2014, Hasseltine was asked to take on more responsibilities with the Maryland Stadium Authority as Vice President of Marketing and Communication.
Hasseltine is currently the Immediate Past Chair of the Board of Directors of the National Association of Sports Commissions (NASC). He also serves on the Maryland Tourism Council Board of Directors as well an advisory role with the Maryland Horse Industry Board.
In February 2011, Terry was name one of the 20 most powerful people in Baltimore in the Baltimore Business Journal Power 20: The Next Generation. In April 2010, he was recognized by the Maryland Daily Record as a 2010 Most Influential Marylander – Civic Leadership.
Since arriving in Maryland, Hasseltine has been instrumental in leading various bid-development and event-support opportunities for the state related to the FIFA World Cup ™, NCAA Men’s Lacrosse National Championships, World Football Challenge (Chelsea v. AC Milan), Dew Tour, CONCACAF Gold Cup, USATF Junior Olympics, Baltimore Grand Prix, Army-Navy football games and more.
Maryland secured the 2009 World Football Challenge, 2010 International Soccer Match at M&T Bank Stadium (Manchester City v. Inter Milan), 2010, 2011 and 2014 NCAA Men’s Lacrosse National Championships, 2011- present Dew Tour: Beach Stop, 2012 USATF Junior Olympics, 2013 USATF Indoor Master Nationals, 2012-13 ACC Men’s Soccer Championships, 2011-2013 Baltimore Grand Prix, 2013 CONCACAF Gold Cup Quarterfinals and 2011, 2014 and 2016 Army-Navy Games. In addition, Baltimore, Maryland and Washington DC (FedEx Field is located in Prince George’s County, Maryland) both made the final cut to be included in the United State’s official bid for the 2022 FIFA World Cup™.
Maryland Sports has engaged over a billion dollars worth of economic activity and secured over $500+ million dollars worth of those activities.
In May 2009, the Office launched its first significant marketing tool: a state-of-the art web site with searchable sports facility directory (www.MarylandSports.us); the site was re-launched/enhanced in spring 2014. The web site is directed to sporting-event and travel industries in the state, national and international markets. Currently, Maryland Sports is expanding its web efforts, tradeshow presence, marketing and attention to TEAM Maryland (www.TEAMMaryland.us).
Prior to coming to Maryland, Hasseltine was deputy executive director of the Kentucky Sports Authority (KSA) where he developed a 24-member community marketing collaborative to promote the state as a sports travel destination. He played a significant role in the efforts to bring 2008 Ryder Cup and 2010 AllTech FEI World Equestrian Games to the Commonwealth. Before joining the KSA, he was director of operations for the Greater Louisville Sports Commission, a championships administrator/regional director for the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA), and a site coordinator for the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA).
Hasseltine received his B.S. in Sports Management (and Communications) from the State University of New York College at Cortland and is accredited as a Certified Sports Event Executive (CSEE) from the National Association of Sports Commissions.
Martin H. Madera is a life long resident of Maryland. He is a graduate of The University of Maryland where he majored in business management, with a concentration in accounting and economics. He is a graduate of the U. S. Army Engineer Officer Candidate School, and managed construction projects while on active military service, as an officer in the Army Corps of Engineers. He is also a graduate of the American Institute of Banking Commercial Lending School.
Martin Madera has over 40 years experience in the financial services field. He provides expertise to a diverse field of business clients. As a commercial banker, he was a branch manager, area manager, commercial lending officer, and conducted sales and management training programs. He established Financial ETC, LLC in 2008, as a consulting firm that provides leadership and CFO services to companies who need assistance with financial management, commercial loans, marketing, and training programs.
Located in Fulton, Maryland, Financial ETC is an active member of The Baltimore Washington Corridor Chamber of Commerce. Marty Madera is also a member of the Board of Directors of the Green Building Institute, assisting businesses to achieve the benefits of environmental economics. He is a member of the Executive Committee for the Association of the U. S. Army at Fort Meade, Maryland, where he also serves on the Fort Meade Restoration Advisory Board, which is a liaison between the U. S. Army and local communities for environmental projects.
He is a past board member of the Northern Anne Arundel County Chamber of Commerce, and a former board member of The Chesapeake Chapter of the Risk Management Association. He also served for three years as Chair of the Board of Trustees of The Seton Keough High School in Baltimore, Maryland. He is active with many local civic and charitable organizations.
He lives in the Fulton area with his wife Mary Claire, who is active in Financial ETC, and serviced for 36 years with The Maryland National Park and Planning Commission as a Program Superintendent. They have a son and two daughters.
David Utts is the CEO and Founder of BeaconPoint Leadership. For over seventeen years David has provided complete and proven systems for maximizing the success of CEOs, business owners, executive leaders and their teams.
- Over 30 years of combine research and focus in business management, leadership development, eastern philosophy, and neuroscience.
- Over 25 years of experience in business working for a number of organizations in a cross section of industries.
- Over 17 Years of experience as business advisor and executive coach.
- Founder of The Enlightened Leader Roundtable, an executive advisory board that supports business leaders to grow their business as they expand their consciousness.
- A Member of the Board for The Maryland Sustainable Business Alliance (a Conscious Capitalism Chapter).
- Masters in Science in Organizational Development, American University.
- Master Certified Coach (MCC) through the International Coach Federation (ICF) since 1999.
Current and Previous Clients Include:
AT&T, Audio Visual Systems, American Management Systems (AMS), Arthur Andersen, Booz Allen Hamilton, CapitalOne, Calvert Investments, Ernst & Young, Discovery Channel, Duke Corporate Education, Federal Realty Investment Trust, Freddie Mac, Grant Thornton, KPMG, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Sallie Mae, Storage Deluxe, Software AG, Triarc Restaurant Group, Towers Watson, The World Bank Group, University of Notre Dame Integral Executive Program.
Currently Advisor at OmniTI Computer Consulting, Inc. , Datapipe and VoMaSmart.
Nick Kovacic brings over 20 years experience in leading technology companies; with extensive business development, marketing and sales experience in the telecommunications and Internet marketplace. In addition to Co-Founding Defywire, a WDC based Mobile Software Company.Where he was responsible for overseeing and building the OEM Market,Federal and Commercial Marketing functions for Defywire. Prior to Defywire, Nick was a founding Partner in The Techtrend Group (TTG), a Washington, D.C. based consulting firm.
Prior to joining TTG; Nick was a seed investor of WebCal (New York,NY). While working with WebCal, Mr.Kovacic raised $ 5 M in private venture capital, launched the WebCal brand, helped supply their strategic direction and orchestrated a successful sale to Yahoo! (Now the Yahoo! Free Calendar Service).
Nick was VP of Business Development of the Vicinity Corporation, a pioneer in Digital Mapping/GPS/LBS/Web based company, which was purchased by Microsoft in May of 2003, off the public market. (following a successful IPO in 2000).
Other accomplishments include participation as a seed round investor and advisor in a number of firms including; eGuard (Gator) which subsequently closed a follow on $20 Million round with Menlo Ventures; and Ventaso, which raised follow-on funding of $30M from Norwest and others.
In total; Mr. Kovacic’’s portfolio companies have raised more than $200 million dollars. Recently
Nick’s company’s have been highlighted in The Washington Post, The Potomac Tech Journal, and various Business Journals.
Nick maintains his ties to the WDC Metro Technology Community as an advisor to B-more Venture Mentors and the Emerging Technology Center in Baltimore,Md. He was also an advisor to DBT Data Inc. (Ashburn,Va.) Welbeck Security LLC,( Bethesda, Md.) ScinDocs Inc.(Boston,Ma.) The Curiosity Zone (Science Lab for Kids, Ashburn,Va.),and he is a founding member of the U.S Naval Academy High Tech Council (The Wardroom). Nick holds a BA in Economics.
Specialties:Extensive General Management, Business Development, Marketing and Sales experience in the Wireless Data and Telecommunications, VoIP, RFID and Internet Marketplaces. Nick has expertise in both the Commercial and Federal Markets, he currently works as an Advisor to System Integrators and Software firms.
MARYLAND CENTER for ENTREPRENEURSHIP, Columbia, Maryland
DIRECTOR Entrepreneurship Programs
- Create and Direct Mentoring and Business Development, Management and Funding Programs at the MCE for startups and emerging companies.
SECURITYHUNTER, INC, Woodlawn, MD June
2011- June 2012
Government and Commercial Security Systems.
CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER
- Program Manager for Personal Access Security Systems at Federal Agencies including the Department of Health and Human Services, Department of Veterans Affairs and the Department of the Army and VA contracts in excess of $40 million.
- Top Secret Clearance.
MICROFINANCE INTERNATIONAL, INC., Washington, DC
June 2010 – March 2011
International Electronic Remittance Aggregator.
- Solicited, developed and managed new business opportunities for aggregating international remittances in the US and Europe.
JEWISH COMMUNITY SERVICES
April 2009 – April 2010
Center for Business Development.
- Launched 6 client startups in technology, marketing, retail and public relations.
BOLD ADVANCE, Owings Mills, MD
October 2006 – March 2009
Executive coaching and mentoring partnership.
- Prepared investment memoranda and coordinated with federal and state securities commissions for ambulatory surgery centers.
INTERMEDIA, Owings Mills, MD
December 1998 – August 2006
Provider of customized hardware and interactive software for retail video and audio kiosks.
CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER
- Industry leader in supermarkets and convenience stores.
- Grew sales from $150K to $2.5M in first year.
- Private Sale.
DOCTORS HEALTH, INC., Owings Mills, MD
December 1994 – August 1998
Primary and specialty Medicare healthcare delivery system (network physicians, therapists, hospitals, and rehabilitation resources).
CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER / PRESIDENT
- Secured $40+M in private seed equity.
- Grew Revenues to over $100 million in 3 years.
- Secured unique reimbursement rates from hospitals cutting costs 21%. Cut cost of care for selected diagnoses 26% through effective disease management programs.
- S-1 registration.
BLUE CROSS of WESTERN PENNSYLVANIA, Pittsburgh, PA
September 1993 – November 1994
Healthcare insurance, managed care and wellness services provider.
CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER / PRESIDENT VERITUS SERVICES
BCWP For-Profit Subsidiaries
- Reorganized and rebuilt IT, EDI, Claims Processing, Managed Care, Wellness and Catalog subsidiaries to achieve profitable operations in 3 years.
- Accomplished 2 mergers and 1 divestment to cut losses without impacting profits.
HEALTHCARE AFFILIATED SERVICES, INC., Pittsburgh, PA
September 1991 – November 1994
Information technology subsidiary of Blue Cross of Western PA dba Veritus Services, Inc.
CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER / PRESIDENT
- Turned a losing proposition into a profitable joint venture with McKesson.
LIBRA GROUP, INC. / LIBRA TECHNOLOGY/LIBRA INFORMATION NETWORKS ,INC., INC., Rockville, MD April 1976 – August 1991
Provider of military global data automation for military medical systems with DOD, Military Department and NIH contracts.
CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER
- As a start up Libra secured a DoD sole source contract extended over 7 years, valued over $40 million to support the DoD Tri-Service Medical Information Systems (TRIMIS) Program.
- Built organization from 3 to over 300 employees.
- Successful private sale.
Libra Information Networks , Inc.
March 1983 – June 1991
Developed, sold and supported a multi-system, multi-channel broadband data integration engine.
- Launched and built as a Libra subsidiary to market government technology to all multi-system users.
- Public Reverse Merger.
UNITED HOSPITALS, Rockville, MD March
1979 – February 1981
Four Hospital 500 bed Group in Newark, New Jersey.
ACTING ADMINISTRATOR of HOSPITAL GROUP
- Turned $600K loss to $1.8M profit within 18 months.
- Achieved second-best reimbursement rate in the State from the second lowest.
GLOBAL HEALTH SYSTEMS, INC., Rockville, MD
March 1978 – October 1983
Provider of practice management and EMR systems for physicians and public clinic systems.
- Launched and built GHS as a Libra subsidiary to $2 million in sales and profit in 1 year. RAPIDATA, INC.,
New York, NY
September 1967 – March 1975
Global provider of networking and online applications.
- Secured venture financing and built Rapidata from start up to market leader in 2 years.
- Achieved Market Capitalization over 80x investment.
- Launched 6 US and 2 European operations.
- Successful S-1 Registration, IPO.
EDUCATION & MILITARY
Master of Business Administration University of Maryland, MD
Bachelor of Arts, Economics/Finance Syracuse University, NY
Captain Army Air Defense Command – Commander 507th Warhead Detachment
Business Law University of Texas – El Paso, El Paso Texas
Accounting Adelphi College, NY
Foundation Board of Directors Towson University
Foundation Board of Directors Bowie State University
Active Top Secret Final –May 2012
Jim Zerr is a lifelong resident of Howard County. He Majored in Spanish and Russian with
a Minor in International Relations, and obtained his Bachelor of Arts degree from the
University of Maryland Baltimore County in 1990. He spent a semester in a language and
culture immersion program in Moscow in 1990.
Since 1992, Mr. Zerr has worked in the print-media-publishing industries. He currently serves as Director of Operations for Salem Eagle, A Salem Communications Company, on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC.
Mr. Zerr’s roles include staff development, team building, operations, warehousing and distribution, customer service, e-commerce, and marketing.
He has managed supply chain optimization for a New York Times Bestselling publishing program, and was an integral part in launching a internet-based nutritional supplement business that went from no revenues to $100K+ per month in sales.
Mike is co-founder and CEO of Staffcentrix, LLC, a socially-conscious and pioneering training firm specializing in digital work and eEntrepreneurship. A former Wall Street attorney, Mike has designed and implemented microenterprise training programs for the US State Department, US Virgin Islands, US Air Force, US Army and similar clients. In 1999, he presented at the United Nations a groundbreaking white paper on the potential of digital work to transform emerging economies. It anticipated by over a decade the spread of digital work internationally.
People with disabilities, including Wounded Warriors, can benefit immensely from virtual work. To that end, Mike has presented to such groups as the President’s Committee on Employment of People with Disabilities and the Presidential Task Force on Employment of Adults with Disabilities. Mike has also sat on several Blue Ribbon SBA disability panels. Similarly, Microsoft invited Staffcentrix to join its Able to Work Consortium to advise on virtual careers for people with disabilities.
Mike and Staffcentrix co-founder Christine Durst appear often in the media. Appearances include Good Morning America, The View, The Dr. Oz Show, 20/20, The Tyra Banks Show, CNN, The Wall Street Journal, Forbes and many more. Mike often assists national media pro bono to expose work-at-home fraud and promote virtual work.
A passionate advocate of greener living, Mike has co-authored two bestselling books on home-office jobs and virtual microenterprise. From 2010-2013 he also wrote a syndicated column on virtual work for the Dallas Morning News.
An Advisor at the George Mason University Enterprise Center, Mike is also Co-Chair of the Advisory Board of the Washington West Film Festival, which uniquely gives its profits to charity.
Mike earned a BA summa cum laude at Georgetown University, and his Juris Doctor at the University of Virginia School of Law. A published fiction writer, he writes in his spare time.