Summit offers 2 days of interactive sessions and practical planning so you can strategically grow and manage your business. You’ll engage with hundreds of business leaders who are asking hard questions, tackling tough choices, and looking to make a difference in the world through their work.
“If you’re devoid of external input you don’t grow. Summit is full of people who get you thinking about things in a different way.”
In the chaos of each calendar year your business planning can easily get pushed aside. Summit is a chance for you take a break from working inside your business and to instead work on your business. We invite you to explore, think, and plan alongside other leaders looking to grow. Because there’s always more to get done.
“That’s why I came here: I wanted my business to be healthy.”
If you’re a business owner, leader, or manager, Summit is for you and your team. You’ll have the opportunity to share and hear stories, develop your “why”, and learn how to lead from the heart—not just the head. We invite you to take a break from the urgent and plan the important.
“What I like about Summit is that these people are in all types of different businesses—it’s not a banking conversation but it’s a leadership conversation, a people management conversation, and a culture conversation.”
As a past business owner, Joni understands the risks, rewards and challenges that ownership and professional management bring. She had the opportunity at Iams as a Brand Manager to live in a professionally managed organization where she saw first hand how strategy, strong leadership and culture can fuel a company to do great things.
After Iams, Joni co-founded a technology services company and became an Aileron client herself, taking the Course for Presidents, establishing an outside Board of Directors and utilizing strategic planning. The company grew from 2 to 100 employees in five years, was a finalist for the Ernst & Young Cincinnati Entrepreneur of the Year award, and was named by the Cincinnati Business Courier as one of the 25 fastest growing companies in the region. After selling this business, she and her husband just couldn’t stop and bought a second business in decorative packaging that they operated for seven years before successfully selling.
In her role as President, Joni oversees Aileron's strategic direction, culture and operational activities. Her leadership and energy inspire and motivate the Aileron team and the community as we strive to raise the quality of life, one private business at a time.
Joni was honored with the "Forty Under Forty" award and received her bachelor's degree in business from Miami University (the real one, in Ohio). She obtained her MBA from Xavier University. As college sweethearts, Joni and her husband Jim have been married for 27 years; they have three great children, a golden retriever and a small mutt who thinks he’s a cross between a mastiff and a pit bull. Family time is a crucial priority for Joni and they enjoy skiing, tubing, running, fishing, sports, eating Chipotle (don’t ask Joni to cook - she can't), family events and vacations.
Former CEO and owner of The Iams Company, Clay is the founder and Chairman of the Board of Aileron. He believes strongly in free enterprise and has a high respect for business owners who risk their capital to employ others. Clay attributes professional management as one of the key reasons he was able to grow Iams to a $1 billion organization. In 1999, the Mathile family sold Iams to international conglomerate Procter & Gamble for the sum of $2.3 billion.
Still active in several business ventures, Clay devotes most of his time to philanthropic interests. In addition to Aileron, Clay and his wife, MaryAnn, created the following initiatives to foster hope and inspire change in the Dayton region and around the world.
Clay also serves as a Trustee on a select group of nonprofit boards focused on education, medical innovation, and social justice. Clay and MaryAnn live in Dayton, Ohio. Clay insists his most important roles are that of husband, father of five, and grandfather of 15. Life as a family man has led to yet another dream, "A family united forever."
Tom MacLeod has a rich history of building brand success.
Most notably, Tom has been the CEO of PepsiCo Canada, CEO of Sara Lee Bakery-Worldwide, and President of The Iams Company. While at Iams, Tom worked with Aileron’s Founder, Clay Mathile, to help grow the then $200 million business into an $800 million organization. The company then sold for $2.8 billion to Procter & Gamble in 1999.
Tom currently sits on three boards in Ohio (Winsupply, Hightowers Petroleum, and DRT) and enjoys passing on his well-earned leadership skills to local business.
When Tom’s not leading or speaking, you can find him and his wife, Barbara, enjoying their 4 children, and eleven grandchildren.
Mary Miller is the CEO of JANCOA Janitorial Services. An award-winning, 46 year old family owned and operated commercial cleaning company located in Cincinnati, OH. JANCOA created The Dream Manager program, popularized by the New York Times Best Selling book under the same title by Matthew Kelly. Printed in 15 languages, it encourages people around the world to achieve their dreams. Thousands of companies utilize the Dream Manager program to create a culture of caring.
As an internationally recognized public speaker, Mary is known for her positive outlook and desire to help others realize their uniqueness and personal power. Mary is the author of Changing Direction: Ten Choices That Impact Your Dreams. In addition to running a business with almost 600 full-time employees, Mary is an Associate Coach with Strategic Coach working with entrepreneurs at quarterly coaching workshops in Chicago. In 2017, Mary received the EY Ohio Valley Entrepreneur of the Year Lifetime Achievement award in recognition of how her accomplishments have improved so many lives.
Joe is the Chief Executive Officer of The Motz Corporation in
Cincinnati, Ohio. Armed with a passion and unstoppable
entrepreneurial spirit, Joe started a business specializing in
landscape maintenance and grounds care after graduating from The
Ohio State University in 1977 with a Bachelor’s of Science in
horticulture. Over the years, the focus of the business evolved to
encompass sports fields, which quickly became the driving force
behind the organization’s legacy.
The Motz Corporation is committed to the development of their
most valuable differentiator – the employees – as together they
strive to make a difference in people’s lives. Joe’s philosophy of
continuous innovation, accountability, championship quality, and
integrity, has made TMC one of the most recognized, respected turf
firms in the world.
TMC, which fittingly became an employee owned (ESOP) company
in 2018, includes:
The Motz Group
Specializing in the delivery of high performance natural and
synthetic athletic field systems.
Manufacturing and delivering high performance infills for
synthetic turf systems that closely simulate the look and
playability of natural grass
Turf Reclamation Solutions (TRS)
Offering the industry a complete and sustainable solution for
synthetic turf removal
Joe resides in Cincinnati, Ohio with his wife Jane. They have three
children – Michelle, Eric, and Nicholas. Outside of his occupation and
his community volunteer work, Joe enjoys many outdoor activities
including camping, kayaking, skiing, cycling and running. He is a 2013
and 2014 Ironman finisher
Joe has involved himself in many
Synthetic Turf Council (STC)
A member since 2004
National Chairman 2008 - 2012
Ohio Turfgrass Foundation (OTF)
President in 1990-91
Professional Man of the Year- 1993
The Ohio State University's
Advisory Board member since 1984-
College of Food Agriculture and
Member since 2009
Member since 2005
Entrepreneur of the Year 2008-09
Member since 2012
Advisory Board member since 2016
Member since 2016
Inner Parish Ministry
Serving the Eastern Cincinnati
Food Pantry as a Strategic Partner
Over the last 25 years, Tony has started, turned-around or helped grow over five different small to medium sized businesses in a variety of industries.
At the age of 26, Tony founded a non-regulated energy service subsidiary of DPL, Inc. that he quickly led to profitably during its first year of operations. Having led on one subsidiary to profitability, Tony was tapped by DPL Inc.’s CEO to lead the turnaround of a technology subsidiary where he executed a new strategy that resulted in a 200% increase in sales and the subsidiary’s first profit. Tony left DPL Inc. after a 15 year career to help grow an early and pioneering internet start-up.
Prior to startingTurningPoint Strategy over 10 years ago, Tony was Vice President of Marketing Strategy & Product Development for Cadence Network, a web-based cost management company that attracted $14 Million in venture funding. Tony was the architect behind the strategy that shifted Cadence Network into high-growth attracting such marquee clients as The Limited, Footlocker, Blockbuster Video, and AT&T Wireless. Forbes Magazine selected Cadence as Best of The Web B2B due in a large part to Tony’s strategy innovation and leadership.
At TurningPoint Strategy, Tony is an expert in growth strategy development, planning, execution and strategic marketing. Tony has authored a series of small business strategy workshops and presentations that he has delivered throughout the U.S. He also authors a blog called Big Strategy for Small Business. Tony is often called upon by business leaders for advice and input how and where to strategically grow their business.
Tony received his BS in Marketing from WSU, and an MBA in Finance from the University of Dayton. Tony serves or has served on several non-profit and for-profit boards in his community.
Tony is an avid runner, competitive tennis player and chef wannabe that lives in Lebanon, Ohio with his wife Janet and his daughters Lindsey and Maddie.
Kelly is the Associate Vice President for Health & Wellness at the College of William & Mary. He is a licensed psychologist, the co-author of the Life Values Inventory, and creator of The Life Values Inventory Online, an online mini-course for values clarification and personal development. He has published and presented in the areas of values, flourishing, transition, identity development, and multi-generational family organizational development. He is president of Applied Psychology Resources and has conducted over two thousand seminars for academic, business, and sport groups. He has served as director of two college mental health centers at Duke University and at the College of William & Mary. He received his academic and clinical training from Vanderbilt University, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and Duke University. He is co-inventor of a U.S. Patented Interactive Sports Simulator System designed for scientific and entertainment application. Kelly was the recipient of the Chambers-Reid Award for Professional Excellence at William & Mary.
Lois is the founder and president of Real Change Business Coaching Ltd. where her focus is helping businesses create plans that result in lasting change.
She has completed 320+ hours of certification course work through the Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching. She is also an Energy Leadership Index Master Practitioner; helping people transform their workplace and life from the core.
She has recently formed a peer group with fellow iPEC graduates and students for continuous professional development. She is an active member and Tool Talks facilitator at Aileron, a local organization that believes in professional management and continuous professional development. She is currently working toward additional certification through the International Coaching Federation.
Lois is co-owner and vice president of Solid Blend Water Management Solutions, a Dayton-based service water management company. Solid Blend was established in 1999; she manages the administrative and human resources departments and is champion of the company culture.
Her mission: to use her courage to inspire others to improve the quality of their own life.
Her beliefs: that each person is in charge of his/her own life and successes; success doesn’t come to you, it’s pursued by you; and action is the foundational key to all success.
Long after she was old enough to read, Bridget listened as her father read aloud to her and her younger siblings. His voice bringing to life the words on the page, the pictures in her mind danced around the room so that the classics like “Little Woman”, “The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe” and “The Red Badge of Courage” became movies long before she ever saw them on screen. This love of story grew as Bridget joined theater in high school and competed nationally for her speech and debate team in the categories of prose and poetry.
“Real life” took Bridget away from storytelling for awhile as she focused on her family and on a successful career in Information Technology and Business Process Improvement. But her love of words never died. Journals and poems became spoken word performances and then she found herself on a Moth stage in Louisville. Winning her first Story Slam that night, she became hooked. After sharing stories on stages in Chicago, Pittsburgh, Ann Arbor, Detroit, Louisville, Cincinnati and Dayton, Bridget began to share her love of storytelling locally by teaching students in an afterschool program, by curating storytelling events, by coaching individual storytellers, and by hosting life talk shows.
Building on her passion for storytelling and her proficient career in business process improvement, Bridget developed a program that uses storytelling to curate company lore. Company lore, the tribal knowledge that drives company behavior, is the compilation of stories past through the ranks, repeated and reshared with each new hire.
Our brains are wired for stories. Company lore is proliferated whether we, as leaders, curate it or not. Bridget believes that just like tribal knowledge was passed around the fire, stories spread company culture. So why not share the stories we want repeated?
Loren Feldman is a senior editor at Forbes, responsible for entrepreneurial coverage in print and online. He also co-hosts a call-in show for business owners, Mind Your Business, on Sirius XM's Wharton business network. His previous job was small-business editor of The New York Times, where he created the You’re the Boss small-business blog. He has also been editor of the Web sites at both Inc. and FastCompany. Before going digital, he was a top editor and writer for print magazines such as Inc., Philadelphia, Manhattan,inc., the American Lawyer, Money, and George. He has also written for GQ, The New York Times magazine and The New York Times Sunday Business section. He has spoken and conducted interviews at numerous conferences and seminars on entrepreneurship. On Twitter, he's @lfeldman.
Nicole’s fellow Aileron team members call her “likeable geek”. Why? She loves to learn and develop both personally and professionally. This helps in her role at Aileron as she researches new ways to deliver services and as she uncovers new philosophies and approaches to continually improve Aileron’s services. She’s passionate about making sure Aileron’s services meet your needs and expectations and making sure they support Aileron’s vision: to raise the quality of life in America. Most notably, Nicole has designed and developed the Course for Managers, Aileron’s Approach to Strategic Planning, and Tool Talks, a roundtable peer-to-peer format.
Her passion to learn and develop is also illustrated in her time spent outside of work. Nicole loves to read and listen to Podcasts and then pass on any helpful insights or new knowledge to others. From a “non-geeky” perspective, she enjoys a good run, yoga, fitness class at PureBarre, ballroom dancing (particularly cha-cha or waltz), watching the Pittsburgh Penguins, trying new places to eat in the Dayton area, and checking items off her dream list.
Nicole is blessed to start working at Aileron as an intern while finishing her undergraduate degree at the University of Dayton. She graduated in 2008 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Marketing and Leadership. Since then, she attended the Dale Carnegie Course: Effective Communications and Human Relations, became certified in Compression Planning and as an Internal Strategic Planning Process Owner, launched a new employee onboarding process, developed and launched internal training programs, and made improvements to a number of Aileron’s existing services, including the Course for Presidents Peer Group, Know Your Customer Workshop, Becoming an Effective Board Member and Interpreting Your Financial Results.
Working at Aileron allows Nicole to live her personal mission each day: to serve others so it positively impacts their life. Follow her on twitter @niluisi or connect with her on LinkedIn to share insights and ideas on ways we can better serve you!
With a passion for proactive leadership, business improvement, and personal development, Tony serves as an energetic mentor and role model for those seeking to lead a fulfilling life inside and outside of business. His experience in strategic planning, business finance, individual advancement, and team cooperation make Tony a well-rounded advisor for small and medium businesses, especially those with a focus on professional services.
For 22 years, Tony has led Choice One Engineering, a civil engineering firm based in Sidney, Ohio, as President, and now serves as the firm’s CEO. Tony and his fellow Choice One leaders have developed and maintained a unique, down-to-earth company culture rich in enjoyment, cooperation, trust, responsiveness, and success. In 2015, the firm implemented a form of open book management based on “Ownership Thinking” and “Great Game of Business”, through which all employees understand the financial aspects of Choice One’s business. Tony has also been a long-time proponent of the DOC Model, and all Choice One employees participate in the planning and implementation of the company’s strategic plan for business, culture, and future growth.
After graduating from Ohio Northern University in 1984 with a B.S. in Civil Engineering, Tony began his career in engineering. After several positions in various roles, Tony and several partners founded Choice One Engineering in 1994. Choice One has grown to include three office locations in western Ohio/eastern Indiana and over 35 employees. Tony’s efforts in company culture and with making Choice One a great place to work has contributed to the firm’s success as the number one “Best Firm to Work For” in the nation in civil engineering for two years in a row, as well as a three-time Dayton Business Journal “Best Place to Work” in the Dayton region.
In 2014, Tony earned his iPEC Life Coaching Certification, and has been using this expertise to positively impact the mindsets and lives of his coaching clients, Choice One employees, and his family. He regularly holds both group and individual coaching to help individuals overcome emotional hurdles that may be holding them back from success, fulfillment, and happiness.
Outside of business, Tony enjoys spending time with his wife Joan and his three grown children Cara, Wade, and Marla. He has a passion for bicycling and has participated in cross-state and cross-country rides on multiple occasions. Always one to seek improvement, he enjoys authors Matthew Kelly, Patrick Lencioni, Lawrence Janesky and others. Finally, he spends time as a volunteer for his local parish, Holy Angels in Sidney, and is a strong advocate for the United Way of Shelby County. Tony Schroeder is President of Choice One Engineering in Sidney, Ohio. Since 1994, Choice One Engineering has been providing public and private clients with common-sense, practical civil engineering and surveying services. Over the years, Tony and his fellow Choice One leaders and employees have developed and maintained a unique, down-to-earth company culture rich in enjoyment, trust, honesty, responsiveness, and outright fun.
Tony began his career in civil engineering after graduating from Ohio Northern University in 1984 with a B.S. in Civil Engineering. He worked for a contractor as a Project Engineer, as City Engineer for the City of Sidney, and as a Project Manager for Worl & Associates, before founding Choice One Engineering with several partners. Tony has worked to develop his leadership skills and the leaders of Choice One Engineering first at The Center for Entrepreneurial Education. After Aileron's creation, Tony has become a regular subscriber to the small business philosophies presented there, and has a special focus on implementing and using the DOC Model.
Under Tony’s leadership, the firm has opened a second location in Loveland, which is part of the Cincinnati market. Using the DOC Model, Tony has been dedicated to maintaining focus on the company’s culture in two locations. Additionally, in 2013, CE News, the leading national civil engineering trade publication, named Choice One Engineering to its top five “Best Firms to Work For” in United States.
In addition to his duties at Choice One, Tony has been actively involved in the leadership of the Shelby County United Way, West Ohio Development Council, Holy Angels Parish in Sidney, and Lehman Catholic Schools where he serves as the head high school soccer coach. In his free time Tony enjoys cycling, camping, and spending time with his wife Joan and children Cara, Wade, and Marla.
Phillip is passionate about discovery, leadership, and culture. As a small business owner, Aileron’s mission of unleashing the potential of private business through professional management resonates deeply with Phillip. He believes that the respect and gratitude that Aileron Founder Clay Mathile expresses for the business owners who put their capital at risk to build better communities is compelling and uncommon.
Phillip earned an Associate’s and Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Purdue University and a Master’s degree in Business Administration from Indiana University. He has also completed online studies in Organizational Leadership taught by the faculty of Northwestern University.
However, the “School of Hard Knocks” has always been the most influential part of his journey and his experience as a young entrepreneur is at the forefront of these experiences. After graduating from college, Phillip founded Perma-Column, Inc. a company that developed, patented, and commercialized a innovative foundation system for the Post-Frame Industry. After successfully growing his company into a firm with locations throughout the United States and Canada, Phillip sold Perma-Column in 2014.
After the sale, Phillip founded Accendo Business Development, LLC and has provided consultation to international and domestic companies in the Food Processing Industry, Agri-Science Industry, and the Heavy Equipment Manufacturing Sector. His firm was contracted by Haldrup GmbH, a German manufacturer of heavy field research equipment. He led the startup team which built their North American operations and started Haldrup USA, Corp. In addition to his work in manufacturing, Phillip has done consultation for private equity firms. His work in this field involves mergers and acquisitions, business development, and portfolio optimization.
Phillip has always taken an active volunteer role in his community. He has served on the Chamber Board of Directors, held a seat on the County Council and State Committee, served as a Governor’s appointee on the Indiana Medicaid Advisory Board, and (most importantly) a Coach for his children’s’ Upward Soccer Teams.
Mark Thompson joined Aileron in August of 2013 as a Business Advisor with the purpose of assisting presidents and owners who are committed to establishing stronger professional management processes within their organizations. Mark's fourteen years as a CEO of a mid-sized professional services firm prepared him for the opportunity to guide clients through the strategic planning process and their organizational development, as well as other operational areas of leading a company. In addition, Mark has served on a number of boards for privately held companies.
Mark began his career as a structural engineer. He joined the consulting firm of Lockwood, Jones and Beals (LJB) early in his career. At age twenty-nine, Mark opened a satellite office in Cincinnati which was a new market for the firm, and a start-up experience for Mark. He developed new clients for the firm which included AK Steel, Ford, GE Aviation, General Mills, Miller Brewing, and Procter & Gamble. The office grew to $1.7 million in annual revenue.
After eleven years of building LJB's Cincinnati office, the firm brought Mark to Dayton to serve as its president. He grew the firm’s profit by 76% from its previous most profitable year, and led the firm through the most profitable sequence of years in the firm’s history. During this time, Mark launched LJB University which is accredited by the International Association for Continuing Education & Training (IACET) to award Continuing Education Units (CEUs). LJB University focuses on the development of staff skills and reinforcement of the firm's culture while also offering training to LJB clients.
Mark first engaged Aileron in 2006 when he attended an Aileron course on business planning. Mark was convinced to install a board of advisors which was launched early in 2007. In 2008, Mark again engaged Aileron to guide him through Aileron's approach to strategic planning. This plan called for a much more focused LJB. The firm was subsequently reorganized from twelve departments into three divisions, and then installed a formal board based upon the Aileron model. Role profiles were developed for each role in the new organizational structure.
This work with Aileron led to an annual planning process which includes a firm-wide strategic plan and specific business plans for each division. Additionally, the firm instituted the practice of individual SMART Goals (specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, timely) as well as individual development plans for all staff. The SMART Goals are devolved directly from the business plans, and achievement of the business plans leads to achieving the strategic plan. This work enabled LJB to significantly grow revenue per employee during the “Great Recession” while correspondingly growing the net worth of the firm to the highest level in the firm’s history.
The work with Aileron and LJB's board subsequently led to the development of Project Management as a center of excellence with a standard of LJB PMs obtaining Project Management Professional (PMP) certification from the Project Management Institute (PMI). Additionally, the firm instituted quality management practices through continuous improvement meetings and value stream mapping of services, formalized sales management and sales training including simulations, and instituted a formal Leadership Development Program which Mark co-facilitated.
The work with Aileron and LJB's board reinforced the significance of a strong culture. During Mark's leadership, the firm received the 2008 Alfred P. Sloan Award for Business Excellence in Workplace Flexibility, and the Dayton Daily News Top Workplaces Award in 2012 and 2013.
Mark's passion and deep respect for the journey of the business owner has led him to devote a significant amount of his time to regional economic development efforts. Mark served as Chair of the Board of Trustees from 2008 - 2009 for the Dayton Area Chamber of Commerce, and Mark currently chairs the Board of the Dayton Development Coalition. Mark holds a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering and a Master of Science in Structural Engineering from the University of Cincinnati as well as a Master of Business Administration from Miami University.
Employees at any level in the organization who are passionate about leadership, professional management, and strategic planning. Individuals are welcome but teams are encouraged.
Summit will take place at Aileron, 8860 Wildcat Road, Tipp City, OH., 45371. Plan your trip with the airport, hotel, and dining guide. Airport-Hotel-Dining Guide