Management Bios

Susan F. Shultz, Founder & Chief Executive Officer

Susan founded The Board Institute, Inc., with the sole purpose of helping to build better boards. Taking this mission and coupling it with her deep experience in board management and recruitment, the team has developed the only professional, independent, web based suite of tools to help organizations assess, benchmark and enhance their boards of directors and their committees.

Susan Shultz founded SSA Executive Search International, Ltd. in 1981, and has conducted senior level searches nationally and internationally, specializing in building and structuring corporate boards.  She is recognized as a leading expert in corporate governance. She authored the highly acclaimed The Board Book, Making Your Corporate Board a Strategic Force in your Company’s Success (AMACOM) and has been featured in the New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Business Week, USA Today, Strategic Finance, the Economist, CFO Magazine and numerous other media.  She also leads the Global Board Practice for INAC Executive Search Worldwide (43 countries), helping public and private companies build better boards of directors.

She has spoken about corporate boards and executive search at The Business Roundtable; the Economist CFO Forum, Tokyo; The Chengdu Chamber of Commerce, China; “Board Strategies at Private Equity Portfolio Companies”, to private equity executives, New York City; the advanced director symposium at the Anderson School, UCLA; Women Corporate Directors, Mexico City, Helsinki, Dubai, New Delhi; The Commonwealth Club; the Canadian Chartered Accountants, Montreal; the Financial Executives Int’l Annual Summit, Semantic Annual CIO Symposium; The Economist CFO Forum, Tokyo;  the US-Asia Investment & Business Expo;  the INAC search symposium, Amsterdam, Bogota, and Mexico City, various CEO gatherings; and to many other organizations.

Before establishing her search firm, Susan had a marketing firm, an import-export company, and was a consultant/media director for many U.S. state and federal political campaigns. She was a columnist and investigative reporter for Phoenix Magazine for 15 years, and has written for numerous other publications. Prior to that, she managed legislation for Rep. William E. Brock in Washington, D. C. Susan received a B.A. in Government and Economics from the University of Arizona and completed all core graduate work in International Affairs and International Economics at George Washington University.

Susan was Nom. Chair, Phoenix Bank, and director of the accredited college subsidiary of TesserAct(Nasdaq). She was President of Charter 100, chaired the Phoenix Committee on Foreign Relations for 16 years, is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations (NYC), the Pacific Council on International Policy (Los Angeles), is Co-Chair of Women Corporate Directors Arizona and is a director of the Arizona Technology Council  Foundation, Charter 100,  and serves on the Selection Committee for Arizona Tech Angels. She was President of the Arizona Business Leadership Association, a member of SBA’s eight-member National Small Business Development Center Advisory Board and numerous other boards.

Craig Samuel, Chief Technical Officer

Craig’s extensive background includes such roles as: Private Equity Partner, Privately Held Company Board Positions, CEO, COO, CKO, CTO, VP and Director in various large publicly held and small to medium privately held companies in the US, UK and Ireland with extensive international business experience in North America, Europe, India, China and Asia.

His areas of expertise are: Developing and running High Performance Organizations, Business and Technical Strategy, Business and Technical Product Innovation, Advanced Technology Product, Services and Market Development (wireless, data center, managed/cloud services), Cyber Security, Business Resilience, Intellectual Property, Data and Knowledge Management, Team collaboration & Intellectual Property & Patent Strategy. An Executive Technology and Business Leader, Entrepreneur, Problem Solver and Trusted Advisor

Mark Edwards, PhD, Chief Metrics & Behavioral Research Advisor

Mark brings to The Board Institute his experience as an author and Professor of Survey Research at ASU, leading the charge to continually enhance and optimize the unique methodology employed in TBI’s indexes. Mark is the creator of the 360-degree feedback methodology and author of the best-selling book 360 Feedback. Mark is also the CEO of TEAMS, Inc., a consulting firm implementing the 360-degree approach now in use at more than 100 companies.

Daniel A. Sharp, Principal

Dan Sharp is a recognized thought leader and practitioner of global risk management, strategy and organizational resilience. Fortune Magazine profiled Mr. Sharp as one of 25 Who Help the U.S. Win and his innovative approach to Continuous Resilience has been highlighted in a 2-page article in Harvard Leadership Magazine, in an October 2015 article in Accountancy Futures Journal (described as a necessary corrective to ERM) and a Harvard Business School case study. Mr. Sharp is a Principal with The Board Institute and was a leader and the originator in the creation of TBI Protiviti Board Risk Oversight Meter.

Global Consulting on Risk Management and Resilience

  • Major corporations including Xerox, BP, Unisys, IBM, General Foods, Texas Instruments, Business International, plus the Governments of China, Spain and U.S.
  • U.S. focused companies and organizations, including Aqua Sciences, CollectiveIQ, Emory University, Healthy Home and other consumer products companies

CEO for more than 20 years

  • Eisenhower Foundation, a presidential legacy championing Ike’s bi-partisan leadership
  • Royal Institution World Science Assembly, a “Davos” for science leaders world-wide
  • American Assembly, created by President Eisenhower at Columbia University as a global public affairs forum to develop consensus and implement public policy

Strategic Advisor to Global NGOs and Government Agencies

  • U.S. Department of Commerce, Council on Competitiveness, The Conference Board, The Infrastructure Security Partnership
  • International organizations including The Club of Madrid, with King Juan Carlos and Mikhail Gorbachev, which counts more than 90 former democratic presidents and prime ministers as members, and the World Justice Project, founded by the ABA to advance Rule of Law, with 500 world leaders from more than 100 countries

J.D. Harvard Law School / B.A. University of California at Berkeley

Taught global corporate strategy, risk management, and resilience for corporate boards, executives and graduate students at institutions including Harvard Business School, Columbia University, Yale School of Management, Rotman School of Management at Toronto University, The Aspen Institute, and London Business School

Barbara E. Morris, Research Consultant

Registered Paralegal (NFPA – 2007), specializing in corporate/business law; 14 years of experience working with tax and estate planning attorneys; 30 years overall Arizona legal experience in most general practice matters; professional writing and editing of legal/business documents services; background also includes free-lance writing and administrative employment/services. Education: Los Angeles City College (English major), Phoenix College (Legal Assistant), Gateway College (Business). Active in community. Founder and executive director of Kind to Nature, a non-profit organization providing education and assistance to the community, animal rescue and rehabilitation, assistance to local animal rescue groups, and maintains sanctuary for special needs animals since 1998. Other interests: competitive tennis, history and nature. Resident of Phoenix, Arizona since 1980.

Barbara Klabacha, Consultant

Ms. Klabacha is widely experienced as an attorney, a banker and an entrepreneur. She has represented both Fortune 500 companies and closely-held businesses as financial and legal advisor across a wide array of industries. Attuned to real-time risks and consequences, she advances active solutions – whether by negotiation or litigation. While living in Chicago, Ms. Klabacha established her own closely-held retail business serving the antiques and gifts markets. She enjoys Phoenix arts events and outdoor activities in northern Arizona.

Ankush Sharma, IT and Research Support Manager

Ankush (Kush) has extensive training in computer science and is currently pursuing a BSE in Chemical Engineering through Barrett, The Honors College, at Arizona State University and plans on graduating in May 2016. When Kush graduates, he plans to pursue a career in the energy sector where he hopes to gain a managerial position through hard-work and perfection of technical skills. Although not traditionally trained in the business sector, Kush enjoys working with The Board Institute, as it provides him with a great opportunity to learn about the interactions between businesses, regulations, and management that will aide in his career goals. Kush is a native Arizonan and has lived all around the valley including Cibecue, Scottsdale, and Chandler. In his free time he enjoys quirky activities like bodybuilding, fishing, and basketball. Additionally, he takes great pride in participating in Push America, a philanthropic organization, ran by his fraternity Pi Kappa Phi, which aims to raise awareness for people with disabilities. Ankush’s favorite event has been volunteering at a haunted house in a collaboration with Best Buddies Arizona, and looks forward to working on fundraising events such as War of the Roses and Bike-a-Thon.

Carl Nisser, Esq., Advisor

Carl has been a Junior Appellate Court Judge in Sweden, Legal Affairs Director at Volvo in Brussels, held various senior executive positions at Goodyear International, including Director of Corporate Affairs. For over 25 years Carl has a partner at Lindahl, the third largest Swedish law firm and a consultant to SJ Berwin, McGuireWoods and Miller Rosenfalck, London.

Carl is an entrepreneur and has owned, set up, managed and co-managed companies in Europe, Indonesia and the U.S. He has been a management consultant, a project manager at U.S. AID, and lived and worked in seven countries in Asia and Europe. Carl has learnt eight languages and studied at the universities at Coimbra, Portugal; Strasbourg, France; Uppsala, Sweden and Harvard Business School. He has been awarded two Masters Degrees.

Carl has contributed to a smart card innovation for which a U.S. patent was obtained, and taught at universities in Europe and the U.S. He is an author of several books and articles. He has been or is a member of the Board of Directors of listed and private companies in Belgium, Sweden, UK and the U.S. as well as charitable companies.

In 1975 Carl set up the European Government Business Relations Council, aka the Ad Hoc Council.  He is a director of the Raoul Wallenberg Committee of the U.S., a Liveryman at the Worshipful Company of Fuellers, London and Advisor to Relational Thinking, Cambridge, UK.

Sun Xiaoyue, Consultant

Originally from China. Graduated from Copenhagen Business School in Denmark with a master degree in Organizational Innovation and Entrepreneurship and have several years working experience in both digital marketing and product marketing in the States. Sun is primarily specialized in content marketing, social media, email marketing, UX design, and technical marketing. Sun has great experience in working with international businesses, especially SMEs.

Viraj Gupta, Corporate Governance Research Intern

Viraj Gupta is currently pursuing a BS in Finance through Arizona State University and is expected to graduate in May 2018. He is a member of Barrett, The Honors College as well as the W.P Carey Leader’s Academy. Viraj has been ensuring that the indexes address the most recent and critical legislation passed involving board practices. Viraj was born in Hyderabad, India and has lived in Kansas and Delaware prior to settling down in Arizona. Through the Delta Chi Fraternity, he proudly volunteers at Feed My Starving Children and at events supporting the Jimmy V Foundation. His free time is spent travelling the world and spending time with his wonderful family. Viraj intends on utilizing his diverse background to pursue a career in consulting and international relations.

Ray Eldard,Creative Director

 Principal and Creative Director, Story Builder Studios, former Creative Director, Contatta, Infusionsoft, LifeLock; Weber State University

Barbara E. Morris, Research Consultant

Registered Paralegal (NFPA), specializing in corporate/business law; Los Angeles City College (English major), Phoenix College (Legal Assistant), Gateway College (Business). 

Barbara Klabacha, Consultant

 widely experienced as an attorney, a banker and an entrepreneur. She has represented both Fortune 500 companies and closely-held businesses as financial and legal advisor across a wide array of industries. 

Ankush Sharma, IT and Research Support Manager

 has extensive training in computer science,  BSE in Chemical Engineering through Barrett, The Honors College, at Arizona State University.