FOX Rising Gen Forum - October 25-26, 2021 - Presenters

Presenters | Venue & Accommodations | FAQs


Becky Levinson
Investment Manager, Levinson Family

Ms. Becky Levinson is a private real estate investment professional. She manages her family's lower/middle market private real estate investment portfolio, is assisting with the growth into the lower/middle market Private Equity space, and is also stepping into the real estate development role with her husband on their first project. Becky grew up on a dairy farm in Pennsylvania, and was heavily influenced by her family’s work ethic, community engagement, and centuries of working together in a family business. She left the farm to obtain a degree in Chemical Engineering from Rose Hulman Institute of Technology, and from there, served her country working for the United States Air Force as a Ballistic Missile Systems Engineer in Dayton, Ohio and then Northern Virginia. After the birth of her third child, she decided on a major career trajectory change and transitioned from civil service to working with both her family and husband’s family, growing into the roles she currently occupies. She lives in Indiana, with her husband, three children and two dogs and enjoys houseplants, cooking, and brewing beer.

Jennifer Risher
Author of We need to Talk: A Memoir About Wealth

Jennifer Risher is on a mission to move money out of the taboo category and help us have much-needed conversations about the emotional side of money. Her book, We Need to Talk: A Memoir About Wealth tells her story and explores the impact of wealth on identity, relationships, and sense of place in the world. Jennifer was born in Seattle, Washington, grew up in Oregon, and graduated from Connecticut College. In 1991, she joined Microsoft where she worked as a recruiter and then as a product manager. She and her husband, David, have two daughters and live in San Francisco, where David is CEO of Worldreader, a nonprofit he cofounded to create a world where everyone is a reader. Last year, in response to COIVD, Jennifer and David launched the #HalfMyDAF challenge which inspired over $8.6 million in charitable giving.

Nick Ilitch
Technical Executive & Advisor, Special Projects

Nick Ilitch is an experienced tech executive with expertise in strategy, marketing and acquisitions. With prior senior management roles with Secure-24, NTT and a spinout from PwC, Nick has over 20 years of professional experience in fast-paced growth companies, large complex projects and digital innovation.

Nick now serves in multiple functions within the Ilitch family system (most known for owning and operating Little Caesars Enterprises, the Detroit Red Wings, the Detroit Tigers and Olympia Entertainment), including having roles in special projects, family council, investments and administration. Nick is third-generation (G3) Ilitch family member and has three children with his wife Melanie in Michigan. Nick is also a mentor, youth hockey coach and triathlete.

Marcus Wagstaff
Advisory Board Member, Cardinal Family Group

Marcus is from Omaha, Nebraska where he graduated from Creighton University with a degree in Finance. After graduation, he worked in Audit and Finance for several Fortune 500 companies. However, it was a career transition into education where he found his passion for teaching and mentoring local youth from disadvantaged backgrounds to gain access into college and career programs.  He currently  serves on the Investment Committee for Cardinal Family Group, LLC (CFG) and is an advisor for the family’s charitable foundation where he focuses on the development and impact of educational initiatives.

Marcus met his wife, Sarah, in high school, and they have now been married for 18 years.  As a long time member of Sarah’s family, he has actively participated in a variety of roles.  He provided guidance to the formation and initial structure of the family office, assisted with the selection process of the primary investment firm and currently advises on the operations of CFG.  His background in Finance has also resulted in his current role serving on the Investment Committee.  

Marcus’ other interests include expanding his family’s personal investment portfolio and serving in a variety of leadership and advisory roles within the local community.  He enjoys spending time with his three children, golf, photography and adding to his sneaker collection. 

Sarah Wagstaff
Managing Director, Cardinal Family Group

Sarah currently serves as a Managing Director of Cardinal Family Group, LLC (CFG), as well as a board member and treasurer for her family’s private foundation.  Following the passing of her father in 2014, Sarah found herself in a unique position, sitting in a seat straddling traditional G1 and G2 responsibilities.  Alongside other family members, Sarah was instrumentally involved with identifying the need for a family office which led to the formation of CFG.  

Born and raised in Omaha, Nebraska, Sarah received her undergraduate degree in Accounting and her MBA from Creighton University.  She spent several years working in public accounting, banking, and real estate before transitioning her time and energy full time to raising a family and assisting with the management of CFG and her family foundation.  Sarah has an interest in helping families and individuals navigate the personal side of wealth – its blessings and burdens – and the often subtle, hidden ways it impacts one personally, emotionally, socially, and relationally.  Sarah and her husband, Marcus, enjoy exploring ways in which they can impact and influence their community and the causes important to them.

Sarah and Marcus have been married for 18 years and have three children ages 16, 12, and 2.  Embracing the life season of the parenting grind, you will most likely find Sarah on the sidelines either coaching or cheering on their children.  Passionate about her faith and people, she also enjoys leading women’s Bible studies and walking alongside others in their personal faith journeys.

FOX Presenters

Heather Asher Abramson
Director, Relationship Manager

Heather Asher Abramson is the Director of Relationship Management at Family Office Exchange (FOX).  In her role, Heather works with business-owning family members to understand their objectives and provides guidance to help address their unique needs through the resources available at FOX. Heather also runs FOX’s Rising Gen Community, which is designed to provide next-generation family members an opportunity to learn, share experiences, and develop skills as future leaders. Heather has held multiple roles at FOX including membership development.    

Before joining FOX in 2008, Heather served as Strategic Marketing and Events Manager at Aon Corporation. While at Aon, Heather planned and executed more than 100 large-scale events and created the marketing and project execution for Aon’s South America Division. Earlier in her career, she worked on Capitol Hill for a U.S. senator and in the foreign policy department at a lobbying organization. She also has previous experience working in a Chicago-based family office. 

Heather has a B.A. degree in Journalism, Public Relations, and Political Science from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She graduated with honors from DePaul University with an M.A. in Organizational and Multi-cultural Communications. 

Mindy Kalinowski Earley, CMP, CFBA 
Chief Learning Officer, FOX Family Learning CenterTM 

Mindy Kalinowski Earley is Chief Learning Officer for Family Office Exchange (FOX). In her role, she fosters integrated learning programs for enterprise families and is responsible for developing the family learning community. She co-chairs the FOX Rising Gen program and serves as an outsourced Chief Learning Office to FOX members. Mindy is inspired by helping people learn, grow, and discover how they will make personal and productive contributions, using their strengths and talents.

Mindy has held various roles in small and large family offices and has been responsible for creating and stewarding professional learning networks supporting human and intellectual capital. She has designed learning experiences that increase the knowledge base and enhance the life path of individuals while providing personalized support and coaching to help them meet their goals. As a Strong Interest Inventory facilitator with a certificate in Family Business Advising, she enjoys helping families and rising generation members navigate the unique world of family enterprise and family relationships by understanding that responsibility and intention pave a path to personal achievement and satisfaction. She has been featured in the New York Times, Family Business Magazine, Successful Generations podcast and is a regular speaker and facilitator. Mindy lives in Rockford, MI, with her husband, daughter, and Bernedoodle.

Sara Hamilton
Founder and Board Chair

Founder and Board Chair of Family Office Exchange (FOX), Sara is a recognized visionary in the private wealth community. While a trust officer at Harris Bank in Chicago in the late 1980s, Sara witnessed the emergence of family wealth management as an industry. Hundreds of U.S. families became centi-millionaires overnight through leveraged buyouts that spawned private financial offices commonly called family offices, to manage family assets and educate wealth owners. Sara was the first professional to recognize family offices as a complex market segment in wealth management.

Sara founded the Family Office Exchange (FOX) in 1989 as a peer network for family office executives. Within 10 years, FOX could see that families needed help with their enterprise vision and managing financial transitions. As a result, FOX evolved into a strategist for family enterprises, a platform for sharing family wealth best practices, and an industry advocate for the importance of private capital in a global economy.

Today, Sara provides strategic direction for FOX and leads the development of new programs and services supporting family enterprises, family office executives and wealth advisory firms in more than 20 countries. She was named one of the Top 50 Women in Wealth Management by Wealth Manager from 2010-2012 and 2019 Outstanding Thought Leader for Wealth Management by Family Wealth Report.

Sara is the co-author of Family Legacy and Leadership: Preserving True Family Wealth in Challenging Times and serves on the executive education faculty of the University of Chicago Booth School of Business where she is an adjunct faculty member for their Private Wealth Management course, offered twice per year in Chicago. She is on the founding boards for the Private Directors Association in Chicago and the Foundation for Gender Equality in New York.

FOX has built a unique resource team dedicated to serving multi-generational families, led by 15 technical experts who are supported by a dedicated team of 20 additional employees based in Chicago, New York, and Madrid.

Allison Lawshe
Learning Center Coordinator

Allison Lawshe is the Learning Center Coordinator at the Family Office Exchange. As a FOX Learning Center team member, she supports the  delivery of learning programs and content for families, family office staff and advisors. Allison brings ten years of family foundation experience to the role, most recently as Chief Program Officer at the IDP Foundation, Inc., where she led the international education portfolio and scaling of training and financing program to over 600 schools across Ghana. 
Allison has an MPP from the University of Chicago, a BA in Economics and Latin American, Caribbean & Iberian Studies from the University of Wisconsin – Madison and is a Professional Certified Coach.

Kent Lawson
Director, Technology Integration Services

Kent Lawson is Director of Technology Integration Services at Family Office Exchange (FOX). With 25 years of experience as a leader in the wealth management industry, and a deep focus in technology for the family office, Kent’s expertise in consulting, project management, analysis, and diligence around technology drives the FOX Technology Marketplace.

Prior to joining FOX, Kent had an established relationship with FOX as a market leader and as a member. Through his previous role with an enterprise family office and as a contributor to FOX forums, Kent brings over a decade of experience serving at the executive level within a single family office. His expertise in wealth management spans a variety of disciplines, including investment operations, technology, and compliance via working with RIAs, the SEC, and Global Investment Performance Standards (GIPS). He also served as a business analyst and consultant for Advent Software, as COO of a trust company, and other technology solution vendors. Kent also founded an outsource COO firm in the wealth management industry providing strategic leadership as a trusted advisor.

With a degree in Music Performance from Ball State University, Kent spent his early years performing as a jazz saxophonist and married another musician, which led him to his “day job” within the wealth industry as a part-time file clerk with an RIA. His background in creativity and thinking outside the box provided the foundation needed for designing innovative solutions in business process and technology making him perfectly suited for the family office industry.

Hilary Leav
Director, Insights and Research

Hilary Leav is the Director of Insights and Research for FOX. In her role, she oversees FOX’s efforts to effectively use data, analysis, and insights to support members and further industry understanding of the unique needs of family offices.

Hilary brings over ten years of research, evaluation, and analysis experience in leadership positions to her work at FOX. Her most recent work centers on building capacity for data usage and creating and sharing actionable information and insights that can drive strategy development, improve efficiency, and increase shared understanding of complex issues. Additionally, Hilary has extensive international experience and has previously worked in operations, strategy development, process improvement, and grants management in both non-profit and for-profit organizations.

Hilary holds her B.A. from the University of Michigan. She received her M.S. in Measurement and Evaluation from American University in Washington, D.C.

Jeff Strese
Family Learning & Leadership Consultant

Jeff Strese is the Family Learning & Leadership Consultant at Family Office Exchange (FOX). As a consultant, Jeff has focused on multi-generational family enterprises, corporations, and mission-driven nonprofit organizations. He has more than 25 years of experience working across industries in the areas of leadership development, organizational effectiveness, and family dynamics. He holds certifications in family wealth and family business advising (CFWA, CFBA).

Jeff is passionate about helping family businesses and organizations create clarity out of the complex and inspiring leaders from all backgrounds to develop and master critical skills like coaching, communication and emotional intelligence. He has developed innovative programs to guide next-generation leaders to reach their full potential in a fast-paced, global economy.

Jeff has served as Chief Talent and Learning Officer (CTLO) at Tolleson Wealth Management, a multi-family office serving client families across the country. Prior to his role at Tolleson, Jeff served as the Chief Human Resources Officer (CHRO) at Southern Methodist University (SMU).

Jonathan S. Tunner
Director, Private Investment Opportunities

Jonathan Tunner is the Director of Private Investment Opportunities at Family Office Exchange (FOX). Jonathan serves as a relationship manager and thought leader helping to develop and execute strategies designed to meet the needs of families across all markets active in direct investing. In his role, Jonathan builds and supports the strategic network of families who desire to share their industry expertise and to collaborate with others to acquire interests in companies and/or real estate. In addition, he oversees the Direct Investing Network (DIN), is a member of the FOX leadership team, and is the Co-Chair of the Owner/Operator Council.

Jonathan brings over twenty-five years of broad business, direct investment, and family office experience to FOX and its members. Jonathan started his career in the international coal industry working in the US, Latin America and Europe for Massey Energy. Jonathan transitioned to oversee daily management of a complex, inter-generational family office. As CFO, Jonathan had senior financial, wealth, and management responsibilities with particular emphasis on sourcing, structuring, funding, overseeing and exiting privately held businesses and real estate interests across a spectrum of sizes and industries. Jonathan also held extensive operational and executive duties within portfolio companies including CEO, CFO and COO, while also serving on numerous boards. Most recently, Jonathan was CEO of Constellation Partners; a business performance consultancy providing strategy, leadership and business intelligence related services to drive enterprise value in lower and middle market businesses.

Jonathan earned a B.A. from Hampden-Sydney College majoring in Spanish and minoring in Economics and History, and an M.B.A. majoring in Finance from the University of Richmond.

Scott Winget
Enterprise Market Leader

Scott Winget is the Enterprise Market Leader at Family Office Exchange (FOX). In his role, Scott serves as Co-Chair for Enterprise Councils and Executive Councils, where members can share experiences, ideas, and best practices with veteran peers in a confidential environment. Scott also serves as relationship manager for Enterprise Family members, in order to understand their unique needs and provide them with access to important research and objective guidance. He is as a member of the FOX leadership team, helping to develop and execute service strategies designed to meet the needs of his market segment, and also participates in new research and thought leadership meaningful to members.

Serving families for over 25 years in the areas or family office, wealth management and estate and tax planning, Scott brings significant experience to FOX and its members. Prior to joining FOX, Scott created and led multi-disciplinary and award-winning consulting groups that provided comprehensive family office services at both Cresset and Ascent Private Capital Management. Earlier, he was a senior wealth planner at Wells Fargo Family Wealth (later, Abbot Downing) and began his career as an income tax and estate planning specialist with Arthur Andersen and EY. Scott has participated in the FOX community for over 15 years.

Scott is a CPA and holds a J.D. from The Ohio State University, where he also earned a B.S. in Business Administration with a dual major in Accounting and Finance. He is a member of the Rocky Mountain Estate Planning Council, Colorado Society of CPAs and the Colorado Bar Association. He has also held several securities and insurance licenses and served on the board of the Mountain Area Land Trust as Treasurer and head of the Finance Committee among other roles with non-profits.