Volume 19 | November 8, 2018
We Make People and Companies Happier by Bringing Them Together
Every year, Columbus CEO magazine publishes their Best of Business issue . We weren't listed on the ballot that came out in July. But, we asked for your help back then to help us compete by registering to vote and submitting us as a write-in business in the category, Best Executive Search Firm . It worked! The winners are named in the magazine this month and we're one of the runners up in our category. We're proud of this achievement and we owe it to you...thank you!

In this issue:
  • Kelly whistles while she works
  • Laurence is Larry and he has a story to tell
  • Mark has found the perfect fit
Proust Pop Quiz
Kelly is President of American Whistle Corporation . They make the best whistle in America. "I grew up in a small one stop sign town in Ohio, and came to this area to attend Ohio Wesleyan University," Kelly shared with me. While in college, she met her husband, Nic, at a Blue Jackets game. "For a short time we moved to Chicago, but in 2007 we moved back to Columbus to start our first business - Planet One Networks ." Planet One Networks manages small business IT services - business VoIP phone systems, managed Internet and Firewalls, and network equipment for all sizes of business. "It was during a meeting with a business broker about acquisition opportunities for Planet One that we first heard about American Whistle," she said. "My first reaction was, this is crazy; whistles no way fit in with IT services. But, after learning about the business we decided to make it happen and finalized the purchase in January 2018.

One of the best things I heard about their decision to purchase the whistle business came about after asking the question, Why? Answer: "No one calls us at three in the morning about a problem with their whistle."

Kelly takes the quiz this month.

When and where were you happiest?
At our house, on our beautiful street - our boys are playing with our neighbors and my husband and I are sharing a glass of wine and talking about work. 

What do you consider your greatest achievement?
Going to college and getting out of my one stop sign home town. It was nice growing up in a rural community, but there were no opportunities there - that achievement has lead to so many good things in my life and was a stepping stone to the life I knew I wanted to create.  

What is your current state of mind?
Excited - we have some new products coming to market and also long term planning; thinking in terms of we will have this business for 30 years - what products do we want to create, how can we make our current product better? We are working to improve some of our presses, dies and the overall processes that are in place. 
Friends in the Biz
I love to hear about all of the good things going on with the unique people who are a part of my life. New roles, great ideas, accomplishments and whatever else that gives me a kick are celebrated and shared here. 

Laurence E. Sturtz is a renowned Ohio trial attorney in the areas of constitutional, criminal, and corporate law. I grew up hanging out at the Sturtz's house with his sons, Craig and Gary, so this is fun to share with all of you.

During his career, Laurence served as lead trial attorney in over 400 jury cases, with a 98% win rate. He became recognized and respected for his expertise in complex high profile civil litigation for private and publicly traded companies. Having received partnership in his firm in only the second year of practice, this dynamic and highly capable attorney handled five cases before the United States Supreme Court – two of them before his thirty-fifth birthday. I've often written about creatives who have had side hustles doing a variety of different businesses endeavors. This profile is all about an attorney who, along with a co-author, Lacey King, has written "a thrilling real life page turner" according to one recent review. What he's written about is what he's lived.

The FBI on Trial in a Sensational Case: Charismatic, ambitious attorney Larry Strong gets the chance of a lifetime when he is appointed to defend career criminal Rocky Hamilton, who agreed to infiltrate a gang of bank robbers for the FBI. It seemed like a good deal for Rocky, who would otherwise have spent his life in prison. But when the gang kidnaps and then murders the young bank manager, Jamie MacDonald, Rocky stands accused of aggravated murder. It’s up to the defense to prove to the jury that Rocky acted at the direction of the FBI—even if calling out the government puts Larry in danger. Fast-paced, character-driven, and expertly written, The Snitch is a fascinating examination of the gray areas between right and wrong, and a shocking exposé of corruption.

I asked Laurence (aka Larry) when he got the feeling that he wanted to write a book. He said, "Actually, THE SNITCH: An Agent without a Badge has been a novel in the making for more than forty years. During the trial in 1976, the trial judge told me I'd be smart to later write about the psychopathic career criminal, his two criminal associates, the FBI, and the innocent young man who got caught in the chaos and lost his life. He told me it would make a great movie. For several years, I searched for an experienced writer to help me to bring the story to the page. I chose the perfect writer, Lacey King. We made a great team."

The best part of someone's journey is always interesting to hear about and understand. For Mr. Sturtz (I'm still most comfortable referring to him this way because he's a friend's dad and I'm a good boy), the best part for him has been after the book was published. "I have enjoyed immensely the book-signings and talking with people about the book."

You can purchase THE SNITCH on Amazon or BarnesandNoble.com .


Mark Hillman is a Columbus advertising veteran (26 years) who is now Managing Director - Executive Creative Director at 160over90 . I've known Mark for years and served with him on the American Advertising Federation, Columbus chapter's Board of Directors. I've got my ear to the ground in Columbus and beyond and it's been common for people to talk about how talented he is...unsolicited.

In the past, he's worked at shops including Zero Base Advertising, Ologie and Engauge. Most recently, he had been Executive Creative Director for the past 13 years with Resource, now IBM iX where he focused primarily on consumer packaged goods brands including Nestle, P&G, Smucker's and Clorox. Those ring a bell.

"I'm incredibly excited to join 160over90," Mark shared with me. "The work is strong. The focus on higher education is really interesting. Plus, being a part of the Endeavor network creates a ton of exciting opportunities. It's the perfect fit for me. I'm looking forward to working with Matt Yuskewich and the rest of the team to make this the next great Columbus agency."
Cochran Executive Search | (614) 620-9620 | chris@cochranexecutivesearch.com CochranExecutiveSearch.com