BOARD OF ADVISORS
Gerald R. Benjamin is a Senior Advisor to Maven Capital Advisors, LLC.
Gerry is the Vice Chairman and Chief Administrative Officer of GreenSky, Inc. (NASDAQ: GSKY), a leading national payments company that powers commerce at the point of sale for a growing ecosystem of merchants, banks and consumers.
Prior to joining GreenSky in 2014, he served as the Managing Partner of Atlanta Equity Investors, LLC (AEQ), a middle market private equity firm. Prior to co-founding AEQ in 2007, Gerry served as a Managing Director with Navigant Capital Advisors, LLC (NCA), leading the Corporate Finance practice group of Navigant Consulting Inc. (NYSE:NCI). He also directed the activities of NCA’s Investment Banking Practice nationally, along with leading the group’s Private Equity advisory activities. Prior to joining NCA, he was a Senior Managing Director with Casas, Benjamin & White LLC, a nationally recognized restructuring and merger and acquisitions advisory firm, which was acquired by Navigant in 2005.
Gerry has 35 years of operating, investment banking, corporate finance advisory, principal investing and restructuring experience. Gerry previously served as CEO of a boutique mergers and acquisition advisory firm, and as CEO of Premier Healthcare, Inc., a healthcare services venture management and development firm. Additionally, Gerry served for 10 years as Managing Partner and Director of Corporate Finance Services for Williams, Benjamin, Benator, & Libby, a 60-person Atlanta-based CPA firm that he co-founded in 1982. He began his public accounting career as a senior accountant in the Atlanta office of Ernst & Young.
In addition to serving as a board member of numerous publicly traded and private companies, Gerry serves on the Board of Trustees of The Woodward Academy, The University of Kentucky Gatton College of Business & Economics, and serves as the past Chairman of the Board of Trustees of The Jewish Federation of Greater Atlanta.
Gerry is a Certified Public Accountant and attended the University of Kentucky on a full tuition music scholarship, earning a Bachelor of Science in accounting, where he was named a Coopers & Lybrand Scholar.
Chris Herschend is Vice Chairman of Herschend Enterprises, the largest family-owned themed entertainment company in the US. Herschend hosts over 14 million guests annually at its attractions which include properties such as Silver Dollar City, Dollywood, Adventure Aquarium, The World Famous Harlem Globetrotters and Pink Jeep Tours.
Chris has been elected by the shareholders to serve on the majority-independent Herschend board of directors since 1997 and has served on the board’s audit, compensation, and governance committees. Earlier in his career, Chris worked for Coca-Cola, Cox Communications, and an Atlanta venture capital firm. He earned both his BA (1995) and MBA (2003) from Emory University in Atlanta. In 2012, Chris personally led the management buyout of an amphibious sightseeing company which he later sold to Ripley Entertainment and other investors.
In addition to his responsibilities at Herschend, Chris leads the Herschend family office, which provides services and makes investments on behalf of 22 family households in six states.
Chris & his wife Ashley have four children (including three teenagers) and live in Atlanta with two muddy dogs. His affiliations include the International Association of Amusement Parks & Attractions (IAAPA), Young Presidents Organization (YPO), Ungerboeck Software International, Whitefield Academy, and Passion City Church.
David is the former Chairman and CEO of Graphic Packaging International, the world’s largest manufacturer of paper-based folding cartons for the consumer food and beverage markets. David served as CEO of Graphic Packaging from January 2007 to January 2016 and Chairman of the Board from May 2013 to May 2016. From 1999 to 2007, he held various senior leadership positions, including Chief Operating Officer and Executive Vice President of Commercial Operations.
Before joining Graphic Packaging, David held senior leadership positions at Avery Dennison Corporation after starting his career at B.F. Goodrich Corporation.
RISI, an information provider for the global forest products industry, named David the 2015 North American CEO of the Year. He was also named PaperAge magazine’s Executive Papermaker of the Year and the E&Y 2013 Entrepreneur of the Year in the Southeast for industrials.
David currently serves as Chairman of the Board of American Greetings, Benchmark Electronics Inc. and Solenis Chemicals. He is also on the boards of directors of Flint Group, Cancer Treatment Centers of America, Inc. and Georgia Partners in Education. He holds a Bachelor of Science in biochemistry and a Master of Business Administration in finance from Purdue University.
Steven Shores is the Chief Executive Officer of Pollack Shores Real Estate Group, an investor, developer, acquirer and manager of multifamily properties in the Southeastern and Southwestern United States. In this role, Steven oversees the firm’s strategy, business development, capital relationships, growth and vision. Since co-founding the firm in 2006, he has led the team at the company which has invested in and created more than 19,000 apartments exceeding $3 billion in value.
Steven has more than 25 years of experience in the real estate and financial industry. Prior to co-founding Pollack Shores, he served in various leadership roles for Hines as the manager of the Denver, Colorado development office and head of acquisitions for Hines’ Southwest region spanning Texas, Colorado, Arizona and New Mexico. Previously, Steven worked in mergers and acquisitions for financial institutions.
Steven earned a Master of Business Administration in finance and real estate from Columbia Business School and a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Davidson College. He is a leadership member with the Multifamily Bronze Council of the Urban Land Institute (ULI), and the boards of directors for the National Multi Housing Council (NMHC) and Thermaldyne LLC.