FINALISTS

PUBLIC COMPANY CFO

Phillip Ahn

B. Riley Financial Inc.

As part of B. Riley’s executive management team, Phil Ahn not only plays a critical role in the firm’s acquisition, investment, and financial management activities but also in the seamless integration of these companies and employees onto the B. Riley platform. The firm is able to operate as effectively as it largely thanks to Ahn’s strategic vision, tireless diligence, and complete dedication to B. Riley and its employees. Ahn has also dedicated his time to serving as a youth mentor – both on and off the field. He has served as a role model to his teams and the budding financial superstars at B. Riley in leading by example. No matter how stressful or time-sensitive a project or task at hand may be, everyone at B. Riley can always count on Ahn to have the most pleasant and affable demeanor.

John Fleming

Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield

John Fleming is the chief financial officer for Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield (URW), responsible for developing the financial strategy for the company’s U.S. operations as well as providing oversight of its controller, treasury, accounting, and tax functions. During the course of his 20-year career trajectory with the company, Fleming has also served as SVP Finance for OneMarket; CFO of Westfield Almeida Junior; as well as holding numerous leadership roles. Fleming is known as an executive who exemplifies tenure, humility, and longevity with Westfield, working diligently with various stakeholders while demonstrating teamwork, boldness, and passion under his daily responsibilities and leadership. These traits align with the company’s values and have propelled Fleming to implement these values as part of his daily mindset and routine. As such, Fleming has been chosen to lead cross-functional group workshops prompting colleagues to assess their value, the importance of teambuilding, as well as personal aspirations.

PRIVATE COMPANY CFO (LARGE)

Yunah Lee

GOAT Group

Yunah Lee has been integral to the success of GOAT over the last three years. She has spearheaded the company’s financing rounds as well as strategic acquisitions over the last couple of years. Lee now oversees all of the company’s corporate functions, including accounting, finance, legal, people, recruiting, facilities and security. She is truly an asset to GOAT Group and oversees the company’s day to day as well as its strategic growth plans. Also focused on giving back, Lee was a speaker at the 2019 Girlboss Rally at UCLA, an annual event that provides millennial women with the tools needed to enhance their professional, personal and financial lives. Lee participated on a panel titled “Money Matters: Yes, It’s (Deeply) Personal,” where she discussed the intimacy of money management on a panel with Arlan Hamilton, Ramona Ortega and Gabby Dunn.

Chris Lynch

Living Spaces Furniture LLC

Drawing from his experience as an auditor as well as a seasoned CFO, Chris Lynch in his six-year tenure with LSF has developed the required infrastructure to ensure success. He has also worked tirelessly in attracting and retaining talent and implementing numerous systems upgrades to monitor financial performance and ensure timely reporting. Lynch’s tenacity for details as well as focus on the broader vision is impressive. He is a collaborative thinker who actively seeks advice from his colleagues both internally as well as externally and uses that guidance to formulate strategies to achieve success on behalf of the company. Lynch’s deep industry knowledge along with ability to adapt to changes, positions him well to proactively address business/industry driven challenges. He is also very passionate about the well-being of his staff. He views corporate culture and talent development as the driving forces of organizational success.

PRIVATE COMPANY CFO (MEDIUM)

Ellen Lehto

Platinum Energy

Ellen Lehto has more than 28 years of experience in the finance industry, with more than 19 years dedicated to franchise lending for quick service restaurants, convenience stores, and petroleum sites. Having worked within both lending institutions and on behalf of clients in the downstream energy segment of the oil industry, Lehto is a skilled financial analyst and negotiator successful in evaluating a company’s financial condition, raising capital, restructuring debt, and facilitating mergers and acquisitions. Lehto joined Platinum Energy and its affiliates to provide interface with the banks, assuring covenant compliance, and to provide analysis of the companies’ portfolios.

Michael Marchetti

Age of Learning

Marchetti has been at the forefront of bringing interactive entertainment to the masses in both early stage start-ups and multinational public companies. He has held senior executive positions in finance, operations and development and has led teams from five to over 1000. He currently serves as CFO and executive committee member of Age of Learning, creators of ABC Mouse.com — the leading and most comprehensive early learning resource for children age 2-7. Marchetti has been a leading player in the growth of interactive entertainment for more than 15 years. He was most recently CEO of Buffalo Studios, which was sold to Caesars Interactive in 2012. In 2000, he was a founding executive and CFO of JAMDAT Mobile, leading JAMDAT’s highly successful IPO in 2005 and its acquisition by Electronic Arts in 2006.

PRIVATE COMPANY CFO (SMALL)

Carolyn Contreras

Fiedler Group

Carolyn Contreras has worked through many adversities, including completing law school as single mother, then acquiring new skills outside of her legal expertise amid poor economic conditions, to successfully navigate roles in finance, operations, and management. Contreras joined Fiedler Group in 2014. Initially hired in an operations role, she was promoted to CFO in 2017 with responsibility for all finance, accounting, legal and administration. In 2017, she negotiated the largest contract in company history. Recognizing the opportunity to diversify and increase revenue, Contreras established FG Synergy Construction in 2019 to insource the construction of hydrogen fueling stations. This resulted in a 200% increase in revenue. Additionally, she guided the company through significant growth by driving operational transformation. Contreras also developed and implemented a business continuity plan to support a seamless migration to remote operations, which were successfully deployed during the pandemic shut down.

Jane Eagle

Bel Aire Investment Advisors

Jane Eagle is a highly effective leader of financial, accounting and business operations who joined Bel Air Investment Advisors in 2013. As CFO, she is responsible for financial strategy and operations including directing all finance and accounting functions for the registered investment advisor and affiliated broker-dealer, as well as financial reporting as a subsidiary of a public Canadian company. With more than 20 years building and leading strong finance and accounting teams, she is also responsible for compensation plan management, strategic planning and operational budgeting, development and reporting of KPIs, and employee benefits and HR policies. Eagle implemented new financial systems, automated outdated processes, critical management reports and implemented internal controls. Her abilities to contribute beyond the bounds of finance were recognized, and she was selected to join the firm’s Management Committee. In 2020, she has also assumed primary responsibility for maintaining safe operations during the COVID-19 pandemic.

NONPROFIT CFO

Cynthia Perley

OneLegacy

As chief financial officer and member of the executive leadership team at OneLegacy, Cynthia Perley oversees the financial operations of a nationally-known nonprofit organization dedicated to saving lives through organ, eye and tissue donation. During Perley’s 4+ years as CFO, OneLegacy has experienced year-over-year growth and in 2019 reported $140 million in total assets, $114 million in total revenue and $6.8 million in income from operations. This year, despite the upheaval that COVID-19 continues to cause to the nation’s healthcare system, OneLegacy is on pace for a 10% increase in organ donations over 2019’s record-setting numbers. Perley has met OneLegacy’s need to successfully re-engineer, re-imagine and fully-reorganize two major departments falling under her purview: finance & accounting and human resources. Through her blend of financial knowledge and experience, coupled with her ability to engender trust and support throughout the organization, Perley has successfully revitalized these departments.

Mitchell Thomas

Martin Luther King Community Hospital

Mitch Thomas is the chief financial officer at Martin Luther King, Jr. Community Hospital and a prominent leader in the healthcare financial sector with over 40 years of experience working for Los Angeles area hospitals and healthcare organizations. Following the closure of the original MLKCH in 2007, Thomas was hired in 2014 to assist in creating a complex financial plan to support the hospital’s rebirth in May 2015. Starting from scratch, he built a financial team to lead this gleaming new privately-managed medical facility through licensure, JCAHO Accreditation, financial reporting, accounting, managed care contracting, insurance services, materials management, and fundraising foundation finance. Serving the largest indigent patient population in the country while working in a state with one of the lowest Medicare reimbursement rates, Thomas has worked with multiple government agencies to create an entirely new financial model that supports the hospital’s 800 employees and $330 million operating budget.

RISING STAR CFO

Cheryl Collett

Anivive Lifesciences

Cheryl Collett has worked tirelessly over the years to help her executive team obtain enormous multiples for their businesses, managed all aspects of finance and operations and acted as a CFO, even before she was officially given the title. For the majority of her time at Anivive Lifesciences, she was the only employee in the department. Over the past several months, she’s built a finance and accounting team. She put in processes and procedures and went live June 1st with an ERP system. She’s been working with the executive team to raise Series A funding. Meanwhile, Anivive has grown to 25 full-time employees and an additional 10 outside contractors and consultants. During the COVID-19 pandemic, she has been able to secure a PPP loan to continue payroll, has been able to continue to raise money (about $4 million so far) as the company remains focused on bringing its therapeutics to market.

Daysi Warren

Redcar Properties, LTD.

Daysi Warren is CFO for Redcar Properties, a privately held real estate company. She has earned a reputation for being a self-starter who does things the right way. With that acumen, Warren has thrived on creating, building and improving accounting departments with a personal touch. By implementing internal controls, various procedures and IT systems, she has been able to provide partners, principals and investors with consistent and reliable information while making accounting a valuable and useful function. Warren continually takes the appropriate accounting and tax approach while looking to do what is best for the company. Dedicated to the real estate industry, she has a keen eye on trends and regulations. With the recent COVID-19 crisis driving demand for light office, industrial and retail space in Redcar’s asset classes, Warren has managed day-to-day duties with an increased work load while capitalizing on new tax laws to benefit owners and investors.

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