2021 Rising Leader Finalists

2021 Rising Leader Honoree: Jack Brendamour, CEO & Co-Owner, Junk King

In August 2017, Deb Welsh, of RiskSOURCE Clark-Theders, was asked to assist with the coordination and implementation of Applied Epic, a new CRM. She achieved great things through this project, building experience and knowledge surrounding the RiskSOURCE interface and communications. In April 2019, she was promoted to the leadership team. Simultaneously, Deb attended the Goering Center’s Leadership Development Institute, which helped shape her transition into the new role. Her leadership skills continued to shine, and her responsibilities expanded as she took on all the digital and IT facets of the company, as well as overseeing their client services team and workflows. Deb’s hard work has allowed the organization to adopt new technology, decrease expenses, increase efficiencies, and boost RiskSOURCE’s growth. She is gifted in operations, open to ideas, smart, organized, driven for excellence, fair, and compassionate – the team is lucky to have such an amazing leader. Her leadership evaluating and improving technology into their operations and workflows will keep the company innovating and improving into the future.

Deb was nominated by Amanda Shults of RiskSOURCE Clark-Theders.

In 2018, Liz Switzer started at Taylor Logistics Inc. in the production, packaging, and kitting department, and she immediately showcased her knowledge and unmatched skillset. At the time, Taylor performed special projects, including in-store retail displays, shelf displays, and eCommerce production, for one dedicated client. Liz was responsible for efficiency and time-studies to report to the client, a larger role within Taylor’s dedicated client division. Liz’s role has evolved tremendously – she is now the go-to person on all projects involving packaging or kitting. She works with several customers on countless projects and has taken Taylor to new heights. Liz has partnered with several Cincinnati-based packaging companies to ensure Taylor’s customers’ products are top-of-the-line, unbreakable, and sustainable. A year ago, Taylor’s public warehouse didn’t have a packaging team – now they have two different teams led and triumphed by Liz. In 2019, Taylor’s in-store design team responsible for dedicated clients’ retail displays made 2,980 – in 2020, this increased to 35,761. Liz played a significant role in making sure demand was met by forecasting, adding labor, and finding ways to cut time to optimize efficiencies.

Liz was nominated by Noelle Taylor of Taylor Logistics Inc.

Andrew Leibreich, N.A.L. Company, Inc., has contributed in many ways to his organization, including promotion of the business and building strategies for management advancement, the company vision statement, and a performance management system. Company sales have increased, as he strengthens the organization’s presence in the marketplace. He has instituted weekly management meetings, started N.A.L. on the road to contingency planning and retirement planning, and much more. Andrew has very much been committed to the 10 Best Practices of Family and Private Business – he is a genuine leader.

Andrew was nominated by Thomas Leibreich of N.A.L. Company, Inc.

Jack Brendamour, Junk King Cincinnati, Dayton, and Louisville, created a Dynamic Business model based on faith, honesty, and respect. His Performance Management and Leadership Development plans focus on positivity, communication, and SMART goal setting. He is the face of contingency planning and understands the significance of this business segment both professionally and personally. Jack sees his team as individuals and challenges all employees to rise about their education or background to try new things, expand their roles, and develop as employees and people. To further learning opportunities for his team, Jack offers formal programs, such as LEAD, and one-on-one meetings with peers. His management team and the rest of the workforce are cross-trained, ready to go where they are needed at any time. Junk King has blossomed under Jack’s leadership – the business is #1 in the franchise and the growth continues as the team prepares to open a fourth location. The Junk King workforce is a family, invested in the future of the company and always working together to accomplish the task at-hand. Jack participates in many outside boards and gives back to the community in countless ways. He lives his own mottos: “Do something kind for someone today,” and “Do the next right thing.”

Jack was nominated by Cody Campbell and Julie Heil of Junk King.

Casey Lysaght headshot and Rising Finalist badge for Dynamic Business Strategy

Casey Lysaght has been in his Wealth Manager role at Eukles Wealth Management, LLC for six years. Casey has developed and implemented a new and progressive marketing strategy aimed at the next generation of clients for his wealth management practice. The ability to connect with the future recipients of the greatest wealth transfer in history is essential to the growth of their business. Casey has uniquely positioned the practice to capture the attention of future clients through dynamic technology outreach and communication tools customized to tomorrow’s consumer. Currently, Casey’s leadership has resulted in the connection to family members of Eukles’ baby boomer client base. In the future, Eukles Wealth Management anticipates retention of client assets as they pass to these family members. This retention, in addition to entering into the wealth planning phase for the next generation, will enable their practice to grow exponentially as current assets are retained and new assets are required.

Casey was nominated by Tim Lysaght of Eukles Wealth Management, LLC. 

Jim Samocki headshot and Rising Finalist badge for Business Growth

Jim Samocki has been in his role as Doran Manufacturing's president since June 2020. In spite of the real challenges brought on by Covid-19 in 2020, Jim energetically stepped into his new role and got Doran Manufacturing back on track after a slight dip in sales in the second quarter of 2020. Jim refused to let his team accept marginal results because of the Covid-19 situation, and allowed them to do what needed to be done in order to produce sales for the company. He encouraged all Doran employees to take online classes (at Doran's expense) while working from home in order to improve themselves. His leadership kept the Doran Manufacturing team fully employed during the pandemic and they are now looking to expand their team. Doran Manufacturing's fiscal year begins in October and thanks to Jim Samocki's leadership throughout the early part of the pandemic the first month of their fiscal 2021 is the second largest sales month in the company's 67 year history.

Jim was nominated by Tim Mullen, Doran Manufacturing.

January Rising Leader Finalist for Giving Back is pictured with Logos

Jessica is relentlessly committed to supporting people find a career they will love, which has become increasingly more challenging over the last year.

As well as driving growth of ALINITI’s talent acquisition department, Jessica has dedicated countless hours of personal time to support individuals in the community that need help the most in finding employment. Rather than simply letting unsuccessful job applicants go back into the marketplace lost and unguided, she has taken it upon herself to coach, advise and guide dozens of job seekers on a one-on-one basis with resume editing, interview preparation and other best practices to help them find employment in one of the most challenging job markets in decades.

Her hours of selfless coaching have not gone unnoticed by those she has helped, supported and impacted over this last year, with many now finding employment. "Her work has been truly life changing for those that once felt a sense of despair and helplessness in their seemingly never-ending search for employment," says Lewis Waitt, Director of Client Solutions at Aliniti. "She is a true inspiration to me and the rest of the ALINITI team."

Jessica was nominated by Lewis Waitt, Aliniti 

December Rising Leader Finalist: Lindsay O'Bryan, Financial Controller, Solid Blend Technologies, Inc.

Lindsay O’Bryan was brought on to fill the controller role at Solid Blend Technologies just two years ago in 2018. 14 months prior to her employment, the company had purchased a performance management system, and had many difficulties implementing it. When Lindsay was brought onto the team, she was handed “this mess to try and sort out,” explains Ken Elrich, VP. She dove into the program, engaged with the developer and brought in an outside expert to help her. After many months of dedication and a "Don't Quit" attitude, she brought this large investment to life. Solid Blend Technologies now have financial data that can be trusted, service operations that can be accurately job costed and they are now able to track goals and organizational KPI's. “She tells us that there are more capabilities of this system that she wants to implement,” adds Elrich, “and we're confident her true grit and never give up attitude will give us more than we thought we could out of this system.”

Lindsay was nominated by Ken Elrich, Solid Blend Technologies, LLC

Rising Leader Finalist for November 2020 is Bobby Slattery, Co-Owner 50 West Brewing

In full swing of the Covid pandemic, Fifty West opened the newest addition to their food, beer and entertainment venues in April 2020, with The Burger Bar. They opened with an online, walk-up restaurant located in Mariemont, alongside the Miami bike trail, Miami river canoeing, park grounds, volleyball courts, and running group meeting points. Upon opening, Fifty West Burger Bar did more business in a day than they projected in a week.  Socially distanced, with an eye on fun with and through great atmosphere, food, beer and root beer, Fifty West is the place to enjoy life again. Bobby Slattery has led his team through some of the most difficult times ever experienced by the restaurant industry. Under Bobby Slattery's leadership, Fifty West has mastered the best of being social during social distancing and also taking leadership to the new normal restaurant / entertainment strategy.

Bobby was nominated by Susan Whitman of Truist Bank.