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GABA Southern California Chapter –

Board of Directors

Executive Directors
Wolfram Doelker, Chairman
Michael Metzger, Vice Chair
Dr. Christoph Kirchner, Treasurer

Regional Directors
Mario Eric Moss
Tim Pruesener

Members at Large
Lex Anselm
Michael Boehm
Dan Hoover
Daniela Treptow

Event Mangement

Kathrin Hager, Event Manager Southern California

Volunteers Staff
Rebecca Engola, Content Manager
Hillary Heer, Database
Stephanie Muehlhausen, Digital Marketing Manager

GABA Stammtisch Business Mixers
Evelyn Lei Tan, Stammtisch Host Los Angeles
Fiona Steinert, Stammtisch Host Los Angeles
Rike Hellermann, Stammtisch Director Orange County
Jo Peters, Stammtisch Director San Diego

Industry and Interest Groups

Clean-Tech and Sustainability
Lex Anselm, Chair

Entrepreneurs and Venture Capital
Thomas Richter, Chair

GABA Filminitiative
Thomas Feith, Chair
Timon Birkhofer, Vice Chair

Verena Puhm, Vice Chair

Media & Entertainment
Timon Birkhofer, Co-Chair
Thomas Feith, Co-Chair
Tillmann Gruber, Co-Chair

Industry 4.0
Olaf Schubert, Co-Chair
Frank Speck, Co-Chair

Workplace California
Jack Schaedel, Co-Chair
Joshua Schneeloch, Co-Chair
Michael Wolff
, Co-Chair

Women in Business
Barbara Kempen, Co-Chair
Elke Miller, Co-Chair

Bios – GABA Southern California Chapter

Board of Directors

Executive Directors

Wolfram Doelker
Board of Directors – Chairman

Co-founder of GABA’s Southern California Chapter
Served as Treasurer until 2012, Chairman since 2013
President and CEO of WDE International Inc, Los Angeles

With 25 years experience in taking businesses global, his consulting practice focuses on market entry into the US and Europe. Services include business presence, market entry, start-up and project management, as well as temporary CEO, COO, CFO and business services.

Prior to founding WDE in 1998, he managed the successful globalization of a European based privatlely held entity from $80 Mio in 4 countries to a $400 Mio in 19 countries. During his tenure based out of Europe and the US, he negotiated and successfully integrated over 20 acquisitions, started businesses from scratch, negotiated joint ventures, developed licensing and franchise programs and managed business units in Europe, Asia and North America. He started his career as certified banker in the financial industry in Stuttgart, Germany and Chicago, IL.

A graduate in Business Economics of the University of Saarbruecken, Germany, he earned his MBA from Union Graduate College in Schenectady, New York.

He served and serves on a number of corporate Boards of US subsidiaries, as Chairman of an Industry Association of Plastic Manufacturers in Germany, the Board of German American Schools, the International Advisory Council of the Los Angeles Economic Development Corporation and the German American Business Association of Southern California.

Contact: w.doelker@gaba-network.org

Michael Metzger GABA Board of Directors

Michael Metzger
Board of Directors – Vice-Chair

Michael is a Partner at Drake Star Partners and provides M&A and financing advisory services to Internet, media, entertainment and technology companies. Drake Star Partners is a global media & tech investment bank with offices in New York, London, Paris, Munich, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Berlin, Amsterdam, Geneva and Tokyo. Previously, Michael was a senior banker at Houlihan Lokey’s TMT group and a Principal at MESA, a merchant bank and advisory firm specializing in digital media and entertainment transactions. Prior to MESA, Michael was Co-Founder and Principal at Covert & Co., Vice President at New Century Capital Partners, and held senior management and engineering positions at AT&T, IBM and Mindspeed.

Michael holds 5 patents in the field of Communications, and he also serves as a Board Director of the German American Business Association (GABA) and as a Vice-Chair of the Southern California Chapter.

Michael was raised in Stuttgart, Germany and received an MSEE from University of Ulm, Germany and an MBA from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) Anderson School of Management.

Dr. Christoph Kirchner
Board of Directors – Treasurer
Chief Financial Officer of BI Nutraceuticals, Inc.

BI Nutraceuticals, Inc. in Long Beach, California, a subsidiary of the Zuellig Group, headquartered in Hong Kong. BI Nutraceuticals, Inc. is a manufacturer of botanical powders and extracts for dietary supplements and nutritional ingredients. Christoph manages the financial and administrative functions across locations in North America and China and serves as a Director and Officer of BI Nutraceuticals, Inc. and several affiliated companies.

Previously, Christoph was involved in developing the cosmetics business for the Henkel Group, a Fortune 500 company based in Duesseldorf, Germany. As the Controller of Hans Schwarzkopf GmbH, he participated in the company’s sale and integration into Henkel KGaA, he managed mergers and acquisitions of cosmetic businesses in Russia, Latin America, Greece and the United States, he developed joint ventures and export businesses in Eastern Europe, and he managed the portfolio of affiliated companies. Additionally, he served as a Financial Executive of companies in Germany, France, Greece and in the United States.

Christoph holds a Ph.D. and an MBA from University of Hamburg, Germany. As Assistant Professor of Business, he taught Accounting and Finance at the University of Southern Indiana. He is fluent in German, English and French.

Contact: c.kirchner@gaba-network.org

Regional Directors

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Mario Eric Moss
Member of the Board
Regional Chair Orange County

Immigration Attorney (www.memlaw.com)

Mario Eric Moss, LL.M. is an Attorney-at-Law admitted to the New York State Bar and German Diplomjurist with over ten years of legal experience in the United States. Mr. Moss’s practice focuses exclusively on U.S. Immigration and Nationality Law matters, such as citizenship applications and especially dual citizenship cases, as well as Green Cards and all types of U.S. visas. His international background, legal education and experience provide him with a special understanding for the unique perspective and concerns of his international clients and their immigration-related needs.

Mr. Moss has organized and participated as a panel member in various international business and legal seminars both in the U.S. and Europe and is affiliated with other international lawyers with offices in the U.S., Germany and other European countries that handle various international and domestic legal matters. Mr. Moss has been a regular guest lecturer on Comparative Law at ABA-accredited law schools and is a member of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA).

Mr. Moss holds a Master of Laws in U.S. Legal Studies and received his German law degree from Eberhard-Karls-Universität Tübingen. He was born and raised in the Stuttgart area in Germany, is fluent in German and English, and proficient in French.

Contact: m.moss@gaba-network.org

Tim Pruesener
Member of the Board
Regional Chair San Diego

Co-Founder (www.icatch-marketing.com)

Tim Prüsener has developed a reputation as a conversion superstar since cofounding iCatch Marketing in 2013 to provide holistic online marketing solutions for businesses. Given his in-depth business background, he also assists new businesses get started, in both the U.S. and abroad.

A native of Germany, Tim worked for Citibank, focusing on private investment, before furthering his education. He earned a bachelor’s degree in corporate finance from the International School of Management and Oxford Brookes University and a master of science in business and MBA from California International Business University.

Tim has successfully launched several businesses and he holds a patent for an innovative advertising product. He and his team at iCatch Marketing use their expertise to assist clients create and grow their brands by tending to everything that supports them: websites, online presence, logos, photography, video production and business cards and other print materials.

Tim enjoys living and working in the beautiful Pacific Beach area of San Diego. He is a board member for the Business Improvement District, Discover Pacific Beach.

Contact: t.pruesener@gaba-network.org

Members at Large

Lex Anselm - GABA Marketing Director

Lex Anselm
Director of Marketing
Co-Chair CleanTech and Sustainability
Outsource CMO

As an outsource Chief Marketing Officer and Marketing Consultant, Lex assists companies in planning and execution all around marketing, strategy, and branding. Over the past 20+ years, Lex has successfully launched various businesses which helped him develop his invaluable 360 degree business and marketing expertise his corporate clients benefit from nowadays.

As the former CMO & CSO of Playfon, a global multimedia content provider, he established and managed new markets in the U.S., Canada, Germany, UK, Sweden and the Baltic countries.

He studied business, real estate, financing and economics in Los Angeles, engineering in Karlsruhe, Germany, and International Business Administration at the European University in Hamburg, Germany.

Lex is fluent in English, German and Russian and with a working knowledge in Spanish, he has lived in six countries, and worked and travelled in over 35 countries.

Contact: l.anselm@gaba-network.org

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Michael Boehm
Member of the Board
Chair CleanTech and Sustainability

Founder, Advanced Sustainability Institute

Founder of the Advanced Sustainability Institute, dedicated to though leadership, demonstration, and entrepreneurship in new energy and cleantech, Mr. Boehm is an entrepreneur, consultant and educator in the sustainability space.

He serves as Industry Liaison for UCLA’s Smartgrid Energy Research Center and has assisted AeroVironment, Trexa, LADWP, GenOn, LAANE, SaveMe, Sempra and Toyota in their new energy and Electric Vehicle endeavors.

He also served as CEO of Solar Energy Development International – an early developer of solar concentrator technology.

Educated at Northwestern University and Stanford Graduate School of Business, Michael has taught sustainability in programs at Darden School of Business, UCLA, and the University of Santa Clara. Mr. Boehm serves as board member and chairman of the German American Business Association, Southern California, CleanTech and Sustainability Industry Group, co-chair of the Los Angeles Economic Development Corporation E-Mobility Task Force, and is an advisor to LA’s Clean Tech incubator.

Contact: m.boehm@gaba-network.org

Dan Hoover
Member of the Board

Dan Hoover is Founder and President of Estey-Hoover Inc., an Advertising and PR Agency that provides domestic and international strategic planning, media buying, creative ads, brochures, web design, email campaigns and other marketing services targeted at consumer and business to business customers in a wide variety of industries. Estey-Hoover is a longtime member of the prestigious American Association of Advertising Agency (AAAA). Prior to founding Estey-Hoover in 1975, Mr. Hoover was the Executive Vice President of Hoover Communications Group and President of Innovative Medical Marketing Systems.

Dan Hoover has received hundreds of creative and marketing awards over his long career. He has served on a number of corporate and non-profit Boards and been a marketing communications volunteer for numerous organizations, including the Partnership For A Drug Free America, Office of Protocol (Economic Development Council), Governmental Affairs Forum (Executive Council of Orange County), Association for Corporate Growth, United Way, Red Cross, American Cancer Society & others. He has received honored recognitions from the Governor of California, and is listed in Who’s Who in California, the West and in Advertising.

Dan Hoover is a native of California, received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from California State University Northridge, is married (nearly 40 years) to his wife, Joan, and has one son, Tim.

Estey-Hoover Advertising & PR can be visited at www.estey-hoover.com.

Contact: d.hoover@gaba-network.org

Daniela Treptow
Member of the Board
Director of Seminars and Stammtisch

Daniela Treptow is the International/Market Communications Analyst at Euro VAT Refund, Inc., a leading U.S. financial services firm, specializing in assisting North American companies with Value Added Tax (VAT) refund collection, VAT registration and management when conducting business in the European Union. Her responsibilities include marketing, communication with European embassies, consulates, trade and investment agencies, as well as U.S. companies who are involved in trade with the European Union.

She is also an active member of various other international organizations and associations, including the British American Business Council (BABC), Meeting Professionals International (MPI) and the Swedish Women’s Educational Association (SWEA).

Daniela earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in Intercultural Communications from Pepperdine University, Malibu, California. She previously worked for Lufthansa and Thai Airways and holds an Airline Travel Certificate. Born and raised in Sweden by German parents, she is fluent in Swedish and German.

Contact: d.treptow@gaba-network.org

Event Management

Kathrin Hager
Event Manager

Costume Designer
Co-Founder Moxxor LLC

Kathrin Hager has been Art Director, Co-Owner and the creative force behind a global gourmet food company, a global Omega 3 distributing multi level marketing company and an upscale Southern California restaurant since 1997.

With her experience in design and marketing, event management, international trade show events, private upscale dinner events and menu planning, she has joined GABA as Event Manager for Southern California. Her diversified creative skills have their source in Fashion & Costume Design.

A native of Germany, she earned her Masters of Fashion Design from the University of the Arts in Bremen, Germany.

Volunteers Staff

Rebecca Engola
Content Manager

Senior Corporate Counsel, Pioneer Electronics (USA) Inc.

Rebecca Engola has been passionate about global cultures for as long as she can remember.  She cultivated that interest by studying French in high school, teaching English in Japan, and for the past several years, expanding upon visits to Germany and connecting with her heritage by volunteering with GABA.  Her one semester of German from her undergraduate study at M.I.T. is enough to pick up only fragments of what her GABA colleagues are saying, although she enjoys trying.

She serves as Senior Corporate Counsel at Pioneer Electronics (USA) Inc., a leader in car electronics products in the U.S. and Canada, with a law degree from UCLA.  She is thrilled and grateful to be involved with GABA.

Contact: r.engola@gaba-network.org

Hillary Heer
Database

Hillary Heer started her career with VS America in 2015 after graduating from Georgetown University and earning degrees in German and Business. After living and working in Charlotte, NC for two years, the Germany based furniture company moved her back to Los Angeles to expand the west coast office and showroom.
She has enjoyed her involvement with GABA Southern California for the past four years managing their member database. Currently living in Playa Vista, she enjoys the beach life and exploring the greater Los Angeles area.

Stephanie Antonia Muehlhausen
Digital Marketing Manager

International Marketing Projects Event Manager

As an International Marketing Project Events Manager for over 18 years, Stephanie Muehlhausen has worked with U.S. and European Fortune 500 companies like IBM and Commerzbank.

She also has shared her creative digital marketing ideas and strategies with small to midsize companies including her specializations in Social Media and Branding.

Originally from Berlin, she was raised bilingual in German and English and some French. She expanded her languages to Spanish when she moved to California.

Stephanie currently lives in Los Angeles and has joined the GABASoCal team as a Digital Marketing Manager. In her free time, she enjoys Yoga and Salsa dancing.

Contact: s.muehlhausen@gaba-network.org

GABA Stammtisch Business Mixers

Evelyn Lei Tan
Stammtisch Host Los Angeles

Evelyn Lei Tan is an attorney licensed in Massachusetts. Evelyn received a dual JD degree from the University of Detroit Mercy School of Law in the United States and the University of Windsor Faculty of Law in Canada. She currently works as an Analyst at Skadden Arps in Los Angeles.

Evelyn also studied business in Germany and received a MBA degree from German International School of Management and Administration and from Purdue University Krannert School of Management. Evelyn worked as a business Consultant at Wayne County in Detroit and a Global Business Advisor helping law firms develop international business

 

Contact: l.tan@gaba-network.org

Fiona Steinert
Stammtisch Host Los Angeles

Director of Logistics, IQS Logistic Consulting

Fiona Steinert is an international freight-forwarding executive, born and raised in Hannover, Germany. She relocated to Los Angeles in March 2013 to open and build up a new office branch for her current employer, a German freight forwarder focused on automotive transportation.

Fiona obtained a master’s degree in English literature and market research from the University of Hannover, Germany. She also studied one semester abroad at the University of Alcala de Henares in Alcala, Spain.

Currently Fiona is expanding her career in the field of marketing and event management for her current employer.

Contact: f.steinert@gaba-network.org

Rike Hellermann
Stammtisch Director Orange County

With a strong background in sales and marketing, Rike has worked for various international companies in Germany like Tektronix, Xerox, Amgen Europe in Lucerne/Switzerland, Gruner + Jahr UK and Kienbaum Ltd in London. She has a hospitality background and worked for the Hotel Group Holiday Inn during the early stage of her career.

Rike also holds a certificate in interior design from London’s City & Guilds. She is involved in the PTA at Newport Elementary School, and is a member of the Ethiopian Education Foundation, a London-based charity. Now living in Newport Beach with her family she holds a California Realtor license.

Rike was raised in Bavaria, Germany, and speaks German and English.

Contact: r.hellermann@gaba-network.org

Jo Peters
Stammtisch Director San Diego

International Student Services

Jo Peters was born and raised in Germany as a daughter of Korean immigrants. She graduated from Ruhr-Universitaet Bochum with a Magister Artium (M.A.) degree in Theater-, Film and Media Sciences and minors in Economics and Sociology. She has worked as an Events Manager at Media Consulta International Holding AG, one of the largest independent PR and advertising agencies in Germany. A few of Media Consulta’s most notable clients at that time were The German Federal Government, The European Commission and The German Federal Parliament.

After Jo’s relocation to the U.S. in 2004 she has focused her work on International Student Services. She is an experienced and enthusiastic international education professional with 13 years of experience in the international and higher education sector. She has proven skills in International Student Services, Enrollment Services, Project and Team Management, Marketing and International Student Recruitment.
Jo has been working as an International Student Advisor at University of California, San Diego for 3 years. She provides specialized student support to international students and is responsible for providing immigration advising services, career counseling, and new student orientation to meet the needs of the growing international student population at UC San Diego.

In her free time Jo enjoys photography, art, cycling (she is an avid cyclist), sports, traveling to foreign countries and experiencing different cultures.
Jo volunteers for the German American Film Festival “German Currents San Diego” and since 2016 she has been organizing and hosting the Stammtisch San Diego as Stammtisch Director.

Contact: j.peters@gaba-network.org

Industry and Interest Groups

Clean-Tech and Sustainability

Lex Anselm - GABA Marketing Director

Lex Anselm
Director of Marketing
Co-Chair CleanTech and Sustainability
Founder (BOZZ.MEDIA) and (Smart Cities Insider)

As the outsource Chief Marketing Officer at BOZZ.MEDIA, Lex assists companies in all needs around marketing, strategy, and branding. Over the past 20+ years, Lex has successfully launched various businesses which helped him develop his invaluable 360 degree business and marketing expertise his corporate clients benefit from nowadays.

At BOZZ.MEDIA, Lex and his team assist companies as an outsource marketing department and provide services such as: marketing consulting, marketing strategy & planning, web design and development, conversion optimization (CRO), email marketing, social media marketing, and PPC.

As the former CMO & CSO of Playfon, a global multimedia content provider, he established and managed new markets in the U.S., Canada, Germany, UK, Sweden and the Baltic countries.

He studied business, real estate, financing and economics in Los Angeles, engineering in Karlsruhe, Germany, and International Business Administration at the European University in Hamburg, Germany.

Lex is fluent in English, German and Russian and with a working knowledge in Spanish, he has lived in six countries, and worked and travelled in over 35 countries.

Contact: l.anselm@gaba-network.org

Entrepreneur and Venture Capital

Thomas Richter
Chair Entrepreneurs and Venture Capital
Venture Partner at OneTraction

Thomas is a Venture Partner at OneTraction, the first open innovation accelerator in Silicon Valley, focusing on disrupting how corporate, startups and investors execute innovation.

Prior to OneTraction, Thomas was the founder of myNexio, a location based messaging and contact management software, and also worked as an accomplished technology consultant focusing on business strategy and corporate development, advising on M&As and investment decisions.

Earlier on, Thomas spent 13 years with Skyworks, most recently as senior director of marketing with responsibilities for business & product strategy, operations and customer support. Revenues exceeded $1B per year and Thomas and his team of 40 moved the company to a clear market share lead from a start outside the top 3 within a few years.

Previous to his work at Skyworks, Thomas worked at Atmel both in San Jose and Munich, Germany as well as for Siemens in Munich, Germany.

Thomas earned an engineering degree from University of Ulm (Dipl. Ing.), and received his business education at the Anderson School of Business at UCLA.

Contact: t.richter@gaba-network.org

GABA Filminitative

Thomas Feith
Co-Chair Media & Entertainment

Chair GABA Filminitiative

Thomas Feith, moved from Hamburg, Germany to Los Angeles in 2013 after falling in love with the city and his wife Ina. His passion in Filmmaking made the move a natural fit away from his one dream town to his new dream town.

Thomas is a Diploma-Engineer in Audiovisual media technology and found his way through the technical stuff toward his true strength, bringing together people. As Business owner and Producer for Film, Television and Commercials as well as Chair of the Board for the GABA Film Initiative he is fully committed to his fellow people and to every project he is on.

Contact: t.feith@gaba-network.org

Timon Birkhofer Co-Choir Media & Entertainment

Timon Birkhofer 
Co-Chair Media & Entertainment
Vice Chair GABA Filminitiative
Co-Founder & Producer at Father&Sun

Timon Birkhofer spent ten years working in advertising for clients such as Audi and Porsche. During that time, he also produced content for artists like Avicii and Lady Gaga. Recently, he produced the first documentary on crowdfunding called “CAPITAL C”, which is set for theatrical release in 2015.

He is a frequent speaker on topics around film production, and is a guest lecturer at UCLA and Woodbury University. He holds a BA in Industrial Management from the Cooperative State University Baden-Württemberg in Stuttgart, Germany, and a BA in Music Business from the University of Popular Music and Music Business in Mannheim, Germany.

Since August 2014, he serves as the Co-Chair for Media & Entertainment at the German American Business Association.

Contact: t.birkhofer@gaba-network.org

Verena Puhm
Vice Chair GABA Filminitiative

Actress, Director, Writer

Verena Puhm is an award-winning actress, director and writer from Austria. She made her TV debut in the critically acclaimed TV Series “Under suspicion” (Unter Verdacht), starring screen legend and Bambi, Romy and German Screen Actors Awards Winner for Lifetime Achievement Senta Berger, in Germany. Her role as “Anna Kastner” in Katharina Ludwig’s “Schutz braucht Vertrauen” won her critical acclaim and the “Corporate Media & TV Award” in Cannes, France. As a writer and director she has been awarded with the “ADC Award”, “Tricky Woman Award”, “Salzburg Countryprice”, “Grand Prix Victoria Award” and “Future – The Young Film Award” and numerous nominations all over Europe.

Verena has worked as a producer and copy editor in Germany on TV shows such as “The Big Surprise” and “Mission Wahnsinn” for Pro 7 and has taught acting and directing workshops at the University of Applied Sciences Salzburg and the Performing Arts Studio Munich. She is currently working on several TV show concepts and her own feature films and book projects.

Contact: v.puhm@gaba-network.org

Media & Entertainment

Timon Birkhofer Co-Choir Media & Entertainment

Timon Birkhofer 
Co-Chair Media & Entertainment
Vice Chair GABA Filminitiative
Co-Founder & Producer at Father&Sun

Timon Birkhofer spent ten years working in advertising for clients such as Audi and Porsche. During that time, he also produced content for artists like Avicii and Lady Gaga. Recently, he produced the first documentary on crowdfunding called “CAPITAL C”, which is set for theatrical release in 2015.

He is a frequent speaker on topics around film production, and is a guest lecturer at UCLA and Woodbury University. He holds a BA in Industrial Management from the Cooperative State University Baden-Württemberg in Stuttgart, Germany, and a BA in Music Business from the University of Popular Music and Music Business in Mannheim, Germany.

Since August 2014, he serves as the Co-Chair for Media & Entertainment at the German American Business Association.

Contact: t.birkhofer@gaba-network.org

Thomas Feith
Co-Chair Media & Entertainment

Chair GABA Filminitiative

Thomas Feith, moved from Hamburg, Germany to Los Angeles in 2013 after falling in love with the city and his wife Ina. His passion in Filmmaking made the move a natural fit away from his one dream town to his new dream town.

Thomas is a Diploma-Engineer in Audiovisual media technology and found his way through the technical stuff toward his true strength, bringing together people. As Business owner and Producer for Film, Television and Commercials as well as Chairman of the Board for the GABA Film Initiative he is fully committed to his fellow people and to every project he is on.

Contact: t.feith@gaba-network.org

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Tilmann Gruber
Co-Chair Media & Entertainment

Tilmann Gruber is a 15 year Entertainment Business veteran, having excelled at strategic Sales Planning and Finance. He works for Sony Pictures Television, and is an alum of Warner Brothers Home Entertainment and New Line Cinema in various corporate and divisional capacities, with both an international and domestic focus throughout his career.

While born in Basel Switzerland, Tilmann was raised in southern Germany, and has lived and worked in Munich and Trier in Germany, in Luxembourg, Massachusetts, and Illinois. He now resides in Playa Vista, California for the past 15 years, is married to a Southern California native healthcare attorney and has one boy.

Tilmann studied at the famed 450 year old learning institution Friedrich Wilhelm Gymnasium in Trier (Germany), continued his education at Northfield Mount Hermon (Massachusetts), received his bachelors in Economics at Northwestern University (Chicago) and most recently completed his Masters of Business Administration at the University of Southern California (Los Angeles).

As an active Industry Group Co-Chair in Media and Entertainment for the German American Business Association and board member to University of Southern California’s Marshall Partners, Tilmann invests time and effort into the communities that influence his life. He is interested in giving back, with the goal of connecting people to each other and to causes that have a positive impact.

Contact: t.gruber@gaba-network.org

Industry 4.0

Olaf Schubert
Chair Industry 4.0

Vice President Operations, California Technical Plating

Olaf Schubert is VP, Operations at California Technical Plating and held senior management positions at Hawker Pacific Aerospace and Lufthansa Technik. In those roles he has developed the expertise to apply Lean/Six Sigma principles to both product and process based manufacturing businesses, focusing on achieving bottom line results. He is a certified Lean Production Specialist and an APICS Certified Supply Chain Professional. Olaf attended Six Sigma Black Belt Training at GE Transportation as well as Six Sigma Green Belt Training at GE Aircraft Engines. Throughout his career, Olaf has applied Lean/Six Sigma practices to lead multiple organizational transformations within the Aerospace/Aviation industry.

Contact: o.schubert@gaba-network.org

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Frank Speck
Chair Industry 4.0

Frank Speck has a degree in mechanical engineering, IT, and Economics at University of Applied Sciences in Munich. After seven years in Sales and Business Development for PLM and CAD software, he shifted his focus to Internet of Things (IoT) software for the manufacturing market. Additive Manufacturing (AM), so called 3D Printing, is his passion and combining IoT with AM leads Frank towards Smart Manufacturing.

Frank is currently working in International Business Development and Partner Management for the Silicon Valley based companyAuthentise, Inc. Authentise is developing IoT software for AM. Frank excels in fast growing markets with upscale environments. Cross-functional communication is one of Frank’s special skills. Frank also helps companies to get the right hardware and software equipment for AM. He is consulting for companies from finding and evaluating the best applications for AM, to design, process workflow, manufacturing, metrology, and quality insurance. With his consulting, he founded Specktrum in 2015.

Frank is leading the GABA industry group ‘Industry 4.0’ since February 2015. Within this postion, Frank is organizing events to the topics Additive Manufacturing, IoT, Robotics, Data Analytics, and Artificial Intelligence.

Frank is married, father, and lives in Long Beach, CA. When he is not glued to a Computer Screen, he is enjoying outdoor activities, driving classic cars, brewing beer, and cooking!

Contact: f.speck@gaba-network.org

Workplace California

Jack Schaedel
Co-Chair Workplace California

Jack Schaedel has spent more than 22 years assisting employers in labor and employment law matters, including defending wage-hour and employment litigation and providing advice and counsel in managing their workforces.

Jack’s clients employ as few as two employees and as many as 100,000 and are based in Southern California and throughout the United States.  Jack guides them through the finer points of discrimination and harassment law, wage and hour regulations, family and medical leave, handbook development and enforcement, and the panoply of issues that face employers every day. Jack speaks frequently on employment-related topics to employer groups and bar associations.  In recent years, Jack has been published or quoted in Forbes, USA Today, Law360, HR Dive, the Daily Journal, the Hollywood Reporter, and more.

Jack is the founder and chairman of the Labor & Employment section of the Pasadena Bar Association and an Executive Committee member of the LA County Bar Association’s L&E section.  Jack’s community involvement includes serving on the Parent Engagement Committee at the University of Southern California and on the Board of Directors of YMCA of the Foothills, based in La Canada Flintridge.

Contact: j.schaedel@gaba-network.org

Joshua Schneeloch
Co-Chair Workplace California
Owner, Neuer Tag Media LLC and Neuer Tag Media GmbH

Joshua Schneeloch is the founding principal of Neuer Tag Media LLC and Neuer Tag Media GmbH. His consulting practice focuses on market entry into the US and Europe. Joshua holds a master degree in strategic sales and marketing from University of Hamburg and a bachelor’s degree in media communication from the TU Berlin.

Joshua Schneeloch is responsible for the channel management and growth as Director Strategy and Operation for SwiftAlarm! Ess. Ltd. USA and CANADA. He serves as Representative for YouTV NETIantic GmbH, VP Commercial West USA & CANADA and for ARM23 LCC.

He holds the Award of Publishers for VIP Encyclopedias, USA and is member of the Who is Who, Verlag for Personenenzyklopädien AG, Schweiz.

Contact: schneeloch@neuertagmedia.com

Michael Wolff
Co-Chair Workplace California

Michael Wolff is president of Dickerson Employee Benefits, a 50-year-old General Agency and employee benefits company headquartered in Los Angeles, California.

A graduate of Germany’s Albert Ludwig University of Freiburg, Michael holds a Law Degree with qualification as a Superior Court Judge in Stuttgart. As part of his undergraduate program, Michael had the opportunity to study abroad in California. It was during this time that he learned about the American insurance industry, and he applied that knowledge upon his return to Germany where he worked in the private insurance sector.

Following his law school graduation, he worked for a prominent German bank before being recruited into the German Diplomatic Service. Michael spent the next 13 years heading legal, press and cultural divisions in several countries before returning to California to work at the Los Angeles German Consulate.

Contact: m.wolff@gaba-network.org

Women in Business

Barbara Kempen
Co-Chair Women in Business
Owner, Solid Health Insurance Services

Barbara G. Kempen is the owner of Solid Health Insurance Services (solidhealthinsurance.com) and, with over 25 years of business management experience, provides health, life, disability, long term care, and business insurance.

In 1989, she graduated cum laude at the University of Cologne as a Diplom Kauffrau (the equivalent to a MBA).

Barbara enjoys her involvement in the West Los Angeles chamber and for GABA Southern California. She supports local community causes, founded the West La Chamber Women Chapter and sponsors school events in West Los Angeles, where she serves her clients and lives with her family.

Contact: b.kempen@gaba-network.org

Elke Miller
IG Co-Chair Women in Business

Owner, Founder and Executive Director of Kigala Preschool (www.kigala.org)
Founder and Founding Board President of Goethe International Charter School

Born and raised in Munich, Germany, Elke held positions from Executive Assistant to Operations and Finance Director, assisting in the start-up and operation of government contracting engineering companies.

When Elke looked for an international and multi-lingual school environment with project based learning for her two daughters, she was surprised at the minimal choices available. While working in government contracting, Elke returned to college to expand her skill set in Early Childhood Education. She holds a California State Permit as Master Teacher and Site Supervisor.

Channeling this purpose and drive, Elke began first hand, in person research and observation of American and international immersion schools. This journey lead her to visualize, found and develop Kigala Preschool and Goethe International Charter School.

She is very active within the German-American Community and founded network groups in Los Angeles, such as “German Community LA” (Deutsche Gemeinde LA) and supported event organization for the German-American Club of Santa Monica. As a businesswoman, Elke is a member of the Santa Monica Chamber of Commerce and West Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce, and a member of numerous education organizations, including the National Association of Education of Young Children (NAEYC), North American Reggio Emilia Alliance (NAREA), Task Force City of Santa Monica, Early Childhood Education, and the Pedagogical Institute in Santa Monica.

Elke offers consulting services for start-up organizations, start-up and development services in the educational field, operation and development services for entrepreneurs and small businesses, as well as personal coaching.

Elke has received recognition and awards for her contribution to high quality education from the City of Los Angeles, the State of California, the Senate and Congress, the Outdoor Classroom Committee and recently the Cross of Order of Merit from the Federal Republic of Germany.

Contact: e.miller@gaba-network.org