Steve Brown recently joined Promus Holdings, LLC, a Chicago-based multi-family office that has investing expertise across a number of alternative asset categories. In addition to his role as Partner of the firm's private equity business, Promus Equity Partners, Mr. Brown helps guide the strategy of the asset management aspects of the business.
Prior to joining Promus, Mr. Brown was a Partner at CHS Capital ("CHS"), a Chicago-based private equity firm. He joined CHS in 1994 and, after holding numerous positions at the firm, was promoted to Partner in 2003. Mr. Brown co-lead the firms investing activities within the Food and Consumer Product industries. Prior to joining CHS, Mr. Brown was employed by Heller Financial, Inc. in Chicago, Illinois where he held various positions within Heller's commercial leveraged lending and real estate departments.
Mr. Brown holds a B.B.A. from the University of Michigan and an M.B.A. from Northwestern University. He currently serves on the Board of Directors of Associated Steel Group and is a past Board member of Weasler Engineering, Monona Wire Corporation, Norse Dairy Systems, Otis Spunkmeyer, CII Technologies, and Cerex Advance Fabrics.
Mr. Brown has played a leadership role within his church, Glenview Community Church, and has participated in numerous other community and social organizations. He currently serves on the Board of Catalyst Schools, a multi-campus charter school operator in Chicago. Steve has been married to his wife Carolyn for 15 years and has three children; Audrey, Mitchell, and Eleanor.
After founding Avent America Inc. in 1992, Ms. Christie spent 13 years growing the business into a mainstream brand within the U.S. Infant Feeding sector. Avent’s main competitors were very large and well-established companies including Playtex, Evenflo and Gerber. Avent America launched into this competitive category with products that had highly defined benefits, new marketing messages and a price point triple that of the market leader. As CEO, Ms. Christie led an approach to the industry that was a clear departure from the existing plans of the competition. This resulted in a full-scale change to the infant feeding category which doubled the market’s value during a time where birth rates were flat.
In 1999, Ms. Christie became an equity partner in the family ownership of the Global Avent business and provided strategic direction to the U. S. subsidiary as well as to the organization as a whole.
In early 2005, she helped lead the sale of the Global Avent business to Charterhouse Capital Partners Ltd., a Private Equity firm in the United Kingdom. The sale was completed in June of 2005 and she was appointed CEO of the new enterprise in July.
As CEO of Avent Ltd., which was based in London, she implemented many cultural and structural changes to the organization, preparing both management and operational processes for an eventual trade sale. Within 14 months, Ms. Christie led the business through the sale process to Royal Philips of Holland, including due diligence, anti-trust clearance and completion. She retired in September of 2006.
Ms. Christie, a graduate of University of Colorado with a B.S. in Journalism, now divides her time between non-profit and commercial work. She angel invests in small start-ups and provides advisory support to them. She is Co-Founder of the Foundation for Scientific Advancement, a non-profit organization based in Sierra Vista, Arizona. She is also involved in political activities focused on protecting free markets, lowering taxes and reducing Government involvement in commercial enterprise.
John Tillman serves as CEO of the Illinois Policy Institute. A
successful entrepreneur, John has built and led organizations in the
arenas of political activism, retailing, e-commerce and internet access.
His business experience has given him firsthand knowledge of the power
of free markets and the importance of accountable government. In 2011,
John won the prestigious Roe Award for his leadership, innovation and
accomplishments in the world of public policy. The Roe Award pays
tribute to those in the state public policy movement whose achievements
have greatly advanced the free market philosophy.
served as president and COO of the Sam Adams Alliance and Foundation
during their start-up phase. Prior to his time with Sam Adams, he served
as president and director of Americans for Limited Government, where he
helped ALG grow from a single, part-time employee in May of 2004 to a
staff of approximately 25 that had a significant impact on political
activity in 13 states in 2006. An experienced speaker on the principles
of liberty and the role of government in our society, John has appeared
in media outlets ranging from FOX News Channel to National Public Radio, and is
a regular guest on top Chicago radio shows.
John has been
involved with a number of civic organizations, including serving in the
voluntary capacity of village president in his community. He is a former
vice president of the Board of Directors at the Neighborhood Boys &
Girls Club in Chicago. John and his wife, Julie, live in the north
suburbs of Chicago, where they are raising their 13-year-old daughter,
Richard T. Weiss
Dick Weiss is a Core Equity senior portfolio manager at Wells Capital Management. Dick joined Wells Capital Management from Strong Capital Management in 2004. Prior to the merger, Dick was vice chairman and CIO of Strong. He served as portfolio co-manager of the Strong Advisor Common Stock Fund and the Strong Opportunity Fund. Prior to this, he was a portfolio manager and partner at Stein Roe & Farnham in Chicago where he began his career, starting as a research analyst in 1975. Dick earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration from the University of Southern California and a master’s degree in business administration, graduating with distinction, from the Harvard Graduate School of Business Administration. His investment knowledge and expertise have earned him several distinctions. In 1996 and 1997, Barron’s named Dick one of the “Top 100 Fund Managers.” In 2000, he was named “Manager of the Decade” by Money magazine and was named to Money’s “2002 Ultimate Investment Club.” Dick has consistently received Lipper's No. 1 ranking for both the Common Stock Fund and Opportunity Fund for periods of five, 10, and 15 years, respectively.