Robert Covington, Jr, Managing Director of The Stephens Group, LLC
Robert Covington, Jr. is a managing director of The Stephens Group, LLC. His background as both an entrepreneur and an investor combine to give him a unique perspective on building and growing solid companies.
Prior to joining The Stephens Group, Mr. Covington was General Partner at SSM Partners specializing in services and technology-enabled services businesses. His board responsibilities included AllWebLeads, Bulldog Solutions, Handango, Datacert and Plan Express.
Mr. Covington also was the founder and CEO of Firstdoor, an internet-based information services company to corporate human resources departments. Under his leadership, Firstdoor negotiated strategic deals with BNA, ADP, Oracle and Marsh & McLennan and raised $18 million of venture capital. Firstdoor merged with Enwisen Corporation in 2002 and was bought by Lawson Software in 2010.
Mr. Covington currently serves as a director of Brand Group Holdings, Inc., Buyers Protection Group, Inc., FiberMedia Group, LLC, FireHost, Inc., Jefferson National Financial Corp. and Vestcom International. He is also a member of the board of The Nature Conservancy. He received his B.S. in Natural Sciences and Mathematics at Washington and Lee University and his Master’s degree in Health Policy and Management at Yale University
Keith Olsen, Board Member, FiberMedia Group
Keith has had a distinguished career in the network services industry for the past 30 years. His recent success as President and CEO of Switch and Data started in February 2004. Keith led Switch and Data’s IPO in 2007. It has been recognized as one of the most successful initial public offerings for a Florida based business. Under his leadership and since taking the company public in early 2007, the company reported consecutive quarterly growth in revenue and EBITDA.
Prior to joining Switch and Data, Keith served as a Vice President, at AT&T. The AT&T business that he led experienced six consecutive years of significant revenue growth, outpacing the industry’s growth each year. Prior to AT&T, Keith served as Vice President with Graphnet, Inc., a leading provider of integrated applications and communication services. Other than family and career, his other passion is in the development of youth athletics. He has contributed to youth sports with time and resources as a volunteer for over thirty years. He has been recognized as a key contributor to his teams and programs ranging from coach, administrator and executive leadership roles.
He currently sits on the Board of Directors for RigNet, a public company listed on the NASDAQ and Intelepeer, a privately held company.
Michael Roark, Founder, FiberMedia Group
Michael Roark founded FiberMedia. Mr. Roark also founded Telesource and M K Roark — companies that provide design, construction, development and provisioning of mission critical facilities and telecom infrastructures with a specialization in data centers. Since 1983, Mr. Roark’s design / build / development firms have constructed over six hundred projects, including industrial and medical facilities, general and mixed-use buildings, commercial offices, and public works projects. Michael was a pioneer in the development of multi-tenant technology centers and has served as a principal and developer in the creation of numerous, diverse and substantive projects.
Ron Clark, COO of The Stephens Group, LLC
Ron Clark offers partners the benefit of his extensive experience in advising large, closely-held businesses on tax law and other critical issues. Prior to joining The Stephens Group, he practiced law for 26 years with Rose Law Firm, a professional association located in Little Rock, where he concentrated on mergers and acquisitions, with an emphasis on corporate and partnership taxation. As the law firm’s chief executive officer for 13 years, he also enhanced his understanding of the management side of business. He has been counsel on both the buy and sell side of some of Arkansas’ largest private transactions. While in private practice, he was listed in The Best Lawyers in America under the Tax Law category and in Chambers USA America’s Leading Lawyers for Business under the Corporate/M&A category.
He currently serves as a member of the board of directors of Arkansas Children’s Hospital, and is a member and chairman of the board of the Arkansas Children’s Hospital Research Institute. He is also a member of the board of directors of The Anthony School, Inc., Buyers Protection Group, Inc., FiberMedia Group, LLC and JV Industrial. He attended the University of Arkansas, where he received both his Bachelor of Science in Accounting and his Juris Doctorate. Mr. Clark also holds a certificate as a Certified Public Accountant in Arkansas.
Tom Hedrick, Operating Partner at The Stephens Group, LLC
Tom Hedrick has been a private equity investor through his investment partnership, Dillon Joyce Ltd since 1995. He currently has 5 active private investments and is a board member of the majority of those companies. From 1987-2002, Tom was with McKinsey and Company, Inc. where he ended his tenure as a Director (senior partner). While at McKinsey Tom was the managing partner of the Dallas office, a co-leader in the global high tech practice and the leader of the Texas private equity practice. Tom began his career as an engineer at Exxon Company USA. He holds a BS in Chemical Engineering from the University of Notre Dame and an MBA from Harvard.
Benn Mikula, Managing Partner, Cheverny Capital
Benn Mikula has 20 years experience in technology private equity and investment banking. He is currently a Managing Partner of Cheverny Capital, a merchant bank with advisory and principal investing practices. During his career he has served as Managing Director & Head of European Technology Investment Banking at JPMorgan in London as well as Managing Director & Head of Technology Equities Research at RBC Capital Markets (where he was the #1 ranked analyst in the sector for several years). He sits on the board of MegaBrands (MB – TSX) and Sanimax Industries. He has also variously been a member of the fundraising boards of the Montreal Neurological Hospital & Research Institute, the Montreal Childrens Hospital, President of the Acorn Society, a Special Advisor to the Shadow Secretary of State for Homeland Security (U.K. Parliament) and a patron of the RSC. He holds both a B.A (Econ.). and an M.A. from McGill University.