Our Team

C-Level Partner's management team is diverse, experienced, and dedicated to the success of your business.  Our common thread is that we have all served as C-level executives in successful companies and collectively have faced most business issues. We focus on value creation by growing top line revenues, improving operational efficiencies, and with an eye towards managing and mitigating business risk. 

Dennis Drent, Managing Director

 

714 290-3892

ddrent@clevelpartners.net

LinkedIn profilewww.linkedin.com/in/dennisdrent   

 

 

 

 

Dennis has a long history of building, rebuilding and turning operations around through a process he calls "disciplined creativity;” balancing the free flow of ideas with setting priorities and getting work done.

 

Prior to becoming an advisor, Dennis’ last corporate position was CEO of a $200 million specialty insurance company that marketed directly to consumers. Although originally trained in financial and operational control, Dennis was a market research fanatic as a CEO. He could often be found just listening to employees, customers and other constituents of the company he served. The value of the company tripled in a few years and Dennis orchestrated the buy-out of minority shareholders by the majority.

 

Dennis believes successful businesses are the most effective way to improve the lives of people. As an advisor, he is energetic, caring, and fully focused on your success. Dennis knows how all the pieces fit together. He is expert at cutting to the key issues and quickly removing constraints to profitable growth.

Dennis is originally from Chicago and earned a BS in Biochemistry and MBA from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Dennis and his wife Susan have a daughter and son both graduates of UCLA making their own way. Dennis loves animals and stays involved in animal health causes.

 

Vince Feraro, Managing Director

 

858 837-18372

vferraro@clevelpartners.net

LinkedIn profile: www.linkedin.com/in/vlferraro  

 

 

 

 

Vince is a passionate and energetic marketing leader and innovator with an award-winning track record of 20+ years spanning the globe.  He is a recognized expert in strategic and product marketing and has driven game-changing profitable results in hyper-competitive software, hardware and solutions markets for some of world’s most iconic technology and brands such Hewlett-Packard and Eastman Kodak.  Vince has earned acclaim as one of Exec Rank's Top 50 CMOs, Brand Quarterly Magazine’s "Top 50 Marketing Thought Leaders Over 50", a Silver Anvil & Clio Award—and is an invited speaker at business symposiums and conferences.

 

Vince currently consults with non-profits, and start-ups to increase the effectiveness of their business strategies and marketing plans.  He serves as Executive Vice President & CMO for digital hardware and marketing services start-up Attenditus Networks and is charged with its day-to-day marketing operations for its application rich solutions for the digital advertising market.

 

Vince previously served as VP of Global Marketing for Kodak’s Consumer Digital Group and Corporate Marketing, responsible for branding, advertising, marketing, PR, social media, Kodak.com, and its e-commerce store. He provided marketing leadership to Kodak’s Consumer Business, which comprised digital cameras, video cameras, film products, kiosks and ink jet printers. In addition, Vince was Global VP for Kodak's Commercial Printing business, where he launched a number of new high-end page and web presses.

 

During his 26 year tenure as an executive with Hewlett-Packard,  Vince led the commercialization efforts of some of the most successful and recognized technology products and brands in the world: PaintJet, DeskJet, OfficeJet, PhotoSmart and LaserJet. Vince served as VP of Global Marketing for HP’s iconic LaserJet business unit and was VP of Marketing for both the Business & Imaging Group and HP’s Consumer Business.

As a social media pioneer, Vince established HP’s highly touted executive blog, and continues to maintain his own popular blog at www.VincentFerraro.com.  He is co-author of the best-selling book “In it To Win It: Strategies for Winning in Business and Life,” and just released his latest book called “Brand to Sell, Proven Strategies to Build a Powerful Strong Brand.” Vince is on the Board of Advisors for San Diego State University College of Business, the CMO Council, and previously served as Board Advisor for XBand Sports. 

 

Vince earned a MBA from the Carey School of Business at Arizona State University and a BBA from San Diego State University. He is a graduate of Stanford University’s Strategic Marketing Management Program.  

 

David Friedman, Managing Director

 

949 439-4503

dfriedman@clevelpartners.net

Personal blog: www.streetsavvymarketing.wordpress.com

LinkedIn profilewww.linkedin.com/in/davidfriedman

 

 

David Friedman is a tech-savvy executive, advisor, and mentor with an expertise in building value for companies by creating a link between the customer and the internal world of a company’s production, operations and manufacturing systems. He brings to C-Level Partners (CLP) a passion in the areas of customer satisfaction, strategic imperatives and innovation in products, distribution, and marketing.  During his 25 year plus career, he has introduced more than $1.5 billion in new products.

 

In his corporate career, he has helped companies increase their share value build top line revenue growth and EBITDA. David had been executive vice president and Chief Marketing Officer for ATX Group (now Sirius Connected Car). Previously, he was Vice President, Marketing and Direct Sales at Connexion by Boeing, and commercialized the first Wi-Fi services on airplanes. Friedman served as VP, Marketing/Chief Marketing Officer for U.S. Cellular in Chicago, where he was part of the executive team that grew revenue from $570 million to nearly $2 billion through a combination of new products and focusing on customer satisfaction and loyalty.  He has also held COO roles for a couple of start-ups in teh software and social media space and executive positions with technology companies such as Covia Technologies, Ameritech Services and RCA.

David is active in the entrepreneurial eco-system in Southern California. He is a member of TechCoastAngels in Orange County and is a senior mentor at both Chapman University's Leatherby Center and the new Institute for Innovation at UC Irvine. He serves on the Advisory Board of Parcel Pending, a package delivery start-up and is a mentor to the CEO of Happinin, a social media start-up out of the Leatherby Center for Entrepreneurism at Chapman University, and an advisor to Invensys, a cybersecurity company based in southern California. He an instructor group in marketing/business instructors through the Marine Executive Education Association at Camp Pendleton.

 

Friedman holds an MBA (economics) from George Washington University, an MSEE from Columbia University, and a BEE (summa cum laude) from City College of New York.

 

 

Brian Newton, Managing Director

 

949 680-8359

bnewton@clevelpartners.net

Linkedin profile: www.linedin.com/in/pub/brian-newton/0O/827/808 

 

 

 

Brian is expert at indentifying and managing risk. Although risk exists in achieving all business objectives, the critical issues are identification and impact assessment. Brian’s experience in all facets of risk management (operational, investment, financial, staffing and regulatory) allows him quickly to quickly assess the key risks facing a firm. Working with management he can quickly identify the key risks demanding mitigation, along with second order risks that can be addressed down the road. He's held Chief Risk Officer and Chief Compliance Officer positions in a globally regulated investment firm.

 

Effective risk management results in the achievement of business objectives. However, it is difficult to measure the impact of something that didn’t happen. Brian’s skills help companies avoid surprises by identifying unseen risks and recommending efficient methods of mitigation. He understands the business environment and clearly thinks about what can go wrong. He also understands what procedures should be put in place to mitigate key risks in a cost effective manner. He has developed and tested disaster recovery plans to follow should a risk event occur along with testing procedures to ensure the plan performs as required.

 

For example, Brian has helped financial institutions increase revenue by demonstrating the firm’s understanding and mitigation of various risks important to prospective clients. An example is the pension fund of a major US automaker that visited his firm to conduct due diligence. On seeing the extensive Procedures and Compliance manuals, both available to staff online, they commented that they had never seen that at other investment managers and were very impressed. A European sovereign wealth fund was similarly impressed and awarded two investment mandates to the firm.

 

Brian is the son of a US Army physician. He has lived all over the world and various cities in the US. He graduated from Northern Arizona University with a BS in Mathematics summa cum laude. Post graduation, Brian completed the Ph.D. qualifying examinations in the graduate economics program at UC Berkeley.

 

Brian volunteers at health fairs to help at-risk groups better understand the risks of Diabetes. He clearly explains lifestyle choices that can reduce the chances of developing or better managing this serious condition.

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