ADVISORY BOARD


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Tan H. Nguyen

Mr. Tan H. Nguyen was born in Saigon, Vietnam in 1970.  The grandson to one of Vietnam’s most beloved businessmen, his family’s legacy embraces integrity, hard work, and generosity.  As a refugee of the Vietnam War, Mr. Nguyen has confronted and overcome great odds.  As a student of the Milton Hershey School, Mr. Nguyen witnessed the power of compassion and philanthropy.  As a graduate of James Madison University, Mr. Nguyen greatly values education and knowledge.

Throughout his 25-year career, Mr. Nguyen established a proven record of entrepreneurial success by Rethinking problems, Reinventing solutions, and Rejuvenating behaviors.  At Sprint, Mr. Nguyen built a reputation for developing business strategies, incubating new business models, and building out channel programs.  Some highlights include: improving Telesales business by 200%, leading the Business Operations/Implementation Process Improvement Team, launching numerous Sprint products (Enhanced In-building Coverage, eBilling & Analysis, Push-to-Talk), and a Founding Member of the Sprint Business Solutions Program Channel.  Mr. Nguyen would consistently rank at the top among Sprint employees and received the top performance ranking 2 years consecutively.

Known for taking calculated risks, Mr. Nguyen would leave Sprint to join two start-ups that stood at the forefront of wireless technology trends at that time.  Mr. Nguyen would spend the next four years evangelizing the industry wide shift to an open mobile email platform (Good Technology) and then mobile video entertainment (GoTV Networks).  Highlights include: growing Good Technology market share to 50% at Sprint, launching the first mobile Country Music video channel, launching the first FREE MUSIC video channel, and winning the business to run Sprint Exclusive Entertainment platform.  All of which would be critical to both start-ups being acquired.


Ready to venture out on his own, Mr. Nguyen would start NuWin Enterprises in 2007 and focus on how to leverage wireless technology to improve on service delivery across verticals   As President of NuWin Enterprises, Mr. Nguyen is one of few professionals in the U.S. to start a multi-million dollar mobile media company. NuWin Enterprises’ entertainment division controlled 9 distinct television channels on Sprint TV. Mr. Nguyen's success on Sprint TV includes: launching the first 3 "Faith" based channels, having the 3 fastest growing "Glamour" themed channels, launching the first "Sprint TV Kids Zone" channel, launching the first "Action Pack" channel, and launching the first "Lifestyles" channel for women.  In addition to TV content, NuWin Enterprises also provided personalization content and entertainment applications to most U.S. wireless carriers, including AT&T, Verizon, Virgin Mobile, and Boost.

Focused on driving innovation, Mr. Nguyen would then guide NuWin Enterprises into its next pivot.  The company would enter the mobile billing space creating the NuWin Billing Mediation Platform (BMP) and healthcare creating NuWin Care (a telehealth platform).  BMP provides mobile operators a secure, efficient, and effective means to deliver “direct carrier billing” to customers.  The BMP was more than a proof-of-concept as it created a new revenue stream that grew at a triple-digit rate, year-over-year, for 3 consecutive years before the business was absorbed by Sprint.  NuWin Care would then launch in 2016 to address the unsustainable, growing cost of healthcare. With industry experts and studies continuing to point toward the promise of telemedicine as a means to reduce costs and change patient behaviors to optimize population health…NuWin Care emerged as a critical component of the healthcare crisis solution.

To compliment his professional life, Mr. Nguyen has a philanthropic interest running the NuWin Foundation, a registered 501(c)(3), which was started in 2007.  The NuWin Foundation has established itself as a pillar in the Kansas City community, financially supporting such organizations as the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts, Horizon’s Ranch, Kansas City Hospice, Chain of Hope, Interfaith Hospitality Network, the Buddy Pack System, and many more.  Mr. Nguyen has also served as First Chair of the Kauffman Center’s ENSEMBLE business advisory committee.

 
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Matt Leffingwell

Matt joined META Alliance and One Village in November 2017. Prior to joining the META Alliance and One Village, Matt served in three different capacities in the U.S. Congress starting in 2006. He had several senior staff roles including six years as Chief of Staff for Defense Appropriations Chairwoman Rep. Kay Granger, and in the front office of the House Appropriations Committee where he helped manage over 100 staff, and $1.2 trillion in discretionary spending. 

In the middle of his Hill career Matt left for two years to serve as the senior director of government relations for ONE Action; an advocacy and lobbying organization focused on ending extreme poverty and disease in sub-Saharan Africa, and co-founded by U2 front man Bono. As the senior lobbyist for Bono’s advocacy organization, he was able to secure nearly $12 billion in funding for programs intended to help those most in need. 

In addition to his Congressional and lobbying careers, he is the co-Chairman of the Board for the Tsavo Conservation Group and is a Member of the Venerable Order of St. John.

 
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Dave Karlin

Mr. Karlin has an extensive and broad background in financial services with a focus on small and middle market investment banking. After receiving a Bachelor of Science degree in Economics from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1991, Mr. Karlin began his career at Lehman Brothers as an advisor in the firm's Private Client Group and later held similar positions at Gruntal & Co. In this role, he advised high net worth individual and institutional investors in the analysis, construction, and management of their investment portfolios. In 1997 Mr. Karlin transitioned into investment banking at GKN Securities where he advised both private and public companies in a variety of industries concerning their capital needs and structure as well as both buy and sell side M&A. Mr. Karlin is currently a Managing Director with Murdock Capital, a New York based merchant bank and strategic advisory firm, assisting small and lower middle market companies with capital markets, business development and M&A. In addition, from 2014 until December of 2016 Mr. Karlin was Chairman of National Stock Exchange Holdings and a Director of the National Stock Exchange until its sale to NYSE/ICE. Mr. Karlin currently lives in East Hampton, NY with his wife and 18 year-old triplets who recently began their college careers.

 

Richard Perna

In his 25 years in banking, Rick has held finance roles in corporate lending, investment banking, and private wealth management. His experience in the sports industry spans nearly 20 years to 1997, when he was a founding member of a Sports Lending Group at Societe Generale.

Having specialized in sports lending & M&A for the past 20 years, Rick brings deep transactional experience and high-level relationships across all major North American professional sports leagues such as MLB, NBA, NHL, MLS, and NFL as well as international leagues such as the EPL, Serie A and the Bundesliga.

In 2006, Perna moved to Citigroup, where he served as Director in the Sports Finance & Advisory Group and focused solely on traditional investment banking services including buy-side and sell-side representation, debt financings, and capital raises within the sports industry. At Citigroup, he oversaw and was responsible for transacting all advisory assignments for nearly 9 years.

He has been closely involved with and led some of the most notable transactions in the market, working with teams such as the Detroit Pistons (sell-side), Fulham FC (buy-side), Minnesota Wild (buy-side), Los Angeles Dodgers (buy-side), AS Roma (equity raise), Bologna FC (buy-side), the Nashville Predators (sell-side), and many others, aggregating billions in transaction value.

Perna is FINRA Series 7 and 66 registered.

 

Jamie Barr

Mr. Barr is a Vice President at Langan Engineering, a 1,000+ person full-service engineering consulting firm with 28 offices around the globe, and is responsible for Langan’s environmental engineering practice in New England.  Mr. Barr holds a bachelors degree in geological engineering from the University of New Brunswick located in eastern Canada.  The majority of his 18 year engineering career has been spent designing development strategies for contaminated properties that balance the various State and Federal regulatory constraints with the financial objectives of the project.  

In late 2014, almost by accident, Mr. Barr and his wife Audrey, founded Trailwood Capital Advisors, a “karma-based”, market agnostic, boutique business advisory firm.  Built around Mr. Barr’s global network of friends and business relationships, Trailwood’s purpose is simple; “Help good people connect with good people”.  By design, Trailwood maintains a relatively low profile in the public domain, while continuing to work and partner with some of the most influential/successful individuals and companies in the global business community.

Mr. Barr is on the board of the New Haven Manufacturers Association, Quinnipiac University’s Engineering Accreditation Board, and University of Connecticut’s Brownfield Initiative Advisory Board.  Mr. Barr is passionate about “responsible” economic development, manufacturing, education, and job creation.  

Mr. Barr splits much of his time between New York City and Guilford, Connecticut, where he lives with his wife and three children.