Paul J. Hooker Center Advisory Board

Paul J. Hooker Center Advisory Board

This Board of Advisors consists of highly successful entrepreneurs who work closely with the Paul J. Hooker Center director and the dean to promote the Center's programs and services to help others launch new business ventures.


Kirk D. Kern

Position: Director, Paul J. Hooker Center
Phone: 419-372-8944
Address: 320 Maurer Center


Bill Dabbelt '78

Position: Partner
Rock Fence Partners LLC
Bonita Springs, FL


Bill has 35 years of Sales and Management experience in the Distilled Spirits Industry.


BGSU, B.S. Business Administration, Selling & Sales Management, Accounting, '78


Joseph J. Fisch, Jr. '71

Position: Founder, President, & CEO
United States Beverage, LLC
Stamford, CT


Joseph has over forty years of experience in the premium alcoholic beverage industry.

After graduating from BGSU, he began his business career in the Management Trainee Program at Joseph E. Seagram & Sons, Inc., the world-wide leader in wine and spirits sales based in New York City. He was inducted into the Dallas-Hamilton Hall of Fame in 2013.


BGSU, BS, Business Administration, Marketing ‘71


George Heath '87

Position: Group President
Sherwin Williams (Retired)
Chagrin Falls, OH


George Heath is a retired group president at Sherwin Williams in Cleveland, where he drove the growth of its industrial businesses from $1.6 billion to over $3 billion in five years, closing seven acquisitions and leading 7,000 employees in more than 50 countries. He is actively involved in higher education, teaching economics and entrepreneurship at University School in the Cleveland metropolitan area. George was a BGSU athlete and earned his Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from BGSU in 1987.


BGSU, B.F.A., Design Studies ‘87


Paul Hooker

Position: Former CEO SFERRA Fine Linens
Founder/CEO RallyCap Sports
Sea Girt, NJ


Paul was the CEO of SFERRA Fine Linens in New York City for 35 years before becoming Board Chairman in 2013. In 1977, he purchased SFERRA and the company experienced dramatic growth under Paul’s leadership, selling to over 600 retail stores in North America and internationally. In1990 he started RallyCap Sports Inc, a non-profit sports program for children and young adults with special needs. In 2010, Paul was recognized as one of the top 100 graduates in BGSU’s first 100 years, and he was inducted into the BGSU Dallas-Hamilton Entrepreneurial Hall of Fame in 2012.


BGSU, B.S. Business Administration ‘75


Earle Malm '71

Position: President
San Ramon, CA


As one of the pioneers of e-commerce, Earle has an illustrious career in communications and investment industry. He held various senior leadership positions at ValueClick, RCA, GT Capital Management, Inc, HighMark Capital Management, Inc., and more. Since retiring from an active senior executive role in 2012, Earle has been devoting his time to entrepreneurial, consulting and advisory activities through NVMLI, Inc., his private investment company. He was one of five inaugural alumni investors in BGSU’s entrepreneurial program, “The Hatch”, a college version of the television show “Shark Tank”.


BGSU, B.S. Business Administration ‘71

Michael McDaniel

Mike McDaniel '01

Position: Vice President and General Manager
Global Workplace and Mobility
Phoenix, AZ


Mike is Vice President and General Manager of Global Workplace and Mobility. He is responsible for DXC’s global workplace experience business, leading innovation and growth, managing all activities and a global staff, and achieving customers’ expectations.

Previously, he spent 15 years in several senior positions at Accenture. Most recently, he was senior managing director for Accenture’s North America sales organization, active in sales origination, client management, technology and innovation development, and C-suite engagement plans for major transformation programs.


University of Toledo, B.S. in Mechanical Engineering

BGSU, Master of Business Administration ‘01


J. Douglas Miller

Position: Partner
Shumaker, Loop, & Kendrick LLP
Toledo, OH


Doug is a partner and national service line leader for Intellectual Property at Shumaker, Loop & Kendrick, LLP in Toledo, OH. He is a mechanical engineer and registered patent attorney licensed in the State of Ohio and before the United States Patent and Trademark Office. He counsels clients in a variety of patent-related matters, and has extensive experience in different technology areas. Prior to practicing law, Doug worked as an environmental engineer/manager and solvent recovery system manager for a chemical compounding facility and a project engineer in the chemical process group with a global engineering consulting firm.   


University of Toledo, Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering
University of Toledo - College of Law, Juris Doctor


Eric Nowlin '82

Position: President & Founder
Private Equity Advisors
Corona del Mar, CA


Eric is a former senior executive for WW Grainger and Maytag who now invests and supports numerous Private Equity sponsors with acquiring and operating B2B distribution & manufacturing businesses. He serves on multiple boards as an Outside Director, Operating Partner, Chairman, Investor & LP.


BGSU, B.S. Business Administration ‘82


Brad Seaman '82

Position: Managing Partner
Parallel49 Equity
Lake Forest, IL


Brad is the Managing Partner of Parallel49 Equity which is a private equity firm that makes control investments in middle market companies in the specialty manufacturing and business services industries.  Parallel49 Equity has made 26 platform investments and has completed 45 add-on acquisitions to grow the scale of the platform companies.  Parallel49 Equity, and its predecessor firm Tricor Pacific Capital, have raised 5 investment partnerships with over $1 billion of committed capital.  Brad serves as the Chairman of the Board of CPI Card Group [NASDAQ: PMTS] and has previously served as Chairman of seven other Parallel49 Equity portfolio companies.  In addition, Brad serves on the board of directors of Steel Dynamics [NASDAQ: STLD], a leading steel manufacturer with over $12 billion in annual revenue and employs over 8,500 people.  

Prior to his career in private equity, Brad spent 15 years with GE and GE Capital in a series of increasingly responsible roles.


BGSU, B.S. Business Administration, Selling & Sales Management ‘82


David Seidman - Emeritus

Position: President/CEO
Seidman Fisher & Company
Chicago, IL


David is the founder of Seidman Fisher & Company, a private consulting firm based in Chicago. He has over thirty years of experience in investment management worldwide. As the retired managing director and principal of Emerging Ventures Limited, he specialized in working with “middle market” companies in the US and Europe. Seidman’s primary European focus has been Poland. He also was an investment manager for Venture Capital Group, a subsidiary of Allstate Insurance Company and a management consultant for McKinsey & Company.


Babson College, Bachelor of Science, Economics ‘60

University of Chicago, Master of Business Administration, Finance ‘62


Luke Sims '15

Position: Executive Director
RallyCap Sports
Maumee, OH


Luke joined Rally Cap Sports following graduation from BGSU in May 2015. During his time at BGSU, he interned at Promedica, Marathon Petroleum Corporation, and O-I, while working with founder Paul J. Hooker to expand RallyCap and begin the first university chapter. After graduation, he moved to New York City to begin working for RallyCap Sports. RallyCap has since expanded to seventeen chapters in six states, under Luke’s leadership as Executive Director. In 2015, Luke was awarded Outstanding Youth in Philanthropy by the Association of Fundraising Professionals. Luke has since moved back to his hometown of Maumee, Ohio and remains in his position of leadership with RallyCap Sports.


BGSU, B.S. Business Administration, Marketing with Entrepreneurship minor ‘15


Aly Sterling

Position: President
Aly Sterling Philanthropy & Founder at Aly Sterling Launch
Toledo, OH


Aly Sterling Philanthropy is a partnership-based consulting firm powering fundraising, strategic planning and board leadership solutions for well-positioned nonprofits and corporate foundations. Aly Sterling Launch was founded to elevate and accelerate women in business and entrepreneurship. Aly is a 2018 induction into the Northwest Ohio Entrepreneurial and Business Excellence Hall of Fame and 2020 author of “37: The Year I Stopped Making Excuses, Embraced My Power, and Launched My Million-Dollar Business”.


Case Western Reserve University’s Weatherhead School of Management, Executive Leadership Program, ‘01
University of Toledo, MA Sociology, ‘99
University of Toledo, BA Interdisciplinary Studies, 97


Steve Zirkel '84

Position: President & CEO
Blue Everest LLC
Toledo, OH


Throughout Steve’s career, he has led Board of Directors, businesses, organizations, and people to reach new heights by focusing on developing and implementing a vision, strategies, talent management processes, ensuring solid financial acumen, decisions making and execution plans. His diverse business knowledge and geographical experiences brings value to the companies he advises and the Boards he serves. He has conducted business in more than 30 countries, traveled to over 70 countries, lived in London, England and Tokyo, Japan with experiences in several B2B & B2C industries and markets.


BGSU, B.S., ‘84
Saint Joseph's University - Erivan K. Haub School of Business, MBA, ‘92