Christy Glass Lowe :: Capital Strategy Consultant

Christy Glass Lowe headshot

Christy Glass Lowe and I spent our formative freshmen year at Penn together. We squished ourselves into what otherwise should’ve been a dorm room for one person…after all, everyone else on our hall had singles.

We remained friends throughout college and beyond and have a lot of fun shared memories. One in particular is a time when, during senior year fall finals, Christy called to say “Bon Jovi is playing tonight. We’re going!”

Before I realized it, we were on the Orange Train in west Philly headed to the arena. I interned for the company that owned the venue and we finagled our way into the front row of the show.

Not too shabby considering we’d paid $10 for the most nose-bleed seats you could buy.

Christy has been an inspiration to many as a leader in investment banking circles. She’s one of the few women I know to have successfully navigated the competitive and rigorous world of finance, quickly breaking into the C-Suite , all while gracefully and thoughtfully raising three children.

She now uses her gifts to work closely with Founders on fundraising strategy; something most entrepreneurs don’t carefully plan.

I know you’ll love this episode as Christy shares great stories about her early days at Goldman Sachs, then as the only woman partner at a boutique M&A advisory firm, to now serving on boards for branded consumer companies.

About Christy Glass Lowe

Since January 2016, Ms. Lowe has been the CEO of CLowe Advisors, LLC, a strategic consulting
firm specializing in capital strategy for consumer focused business. Prior to founding CLowe Advisors, LLC, Ms. Lowe was a
Managing Director at Imperial Capital, LLC from 2007 to 2015. At Imperial, she founded the annual Imperial Capital Consumer
Conference in 2009 which featured branded consumer companies and consumer focused private equity investors. Prior to Imperial, Ms. Lowe was the Co-Founder & Head of Consumer Practice at USBX Advisory Services, LLC from 2000 to 2007.
 
Ms. Lowe was a Corporate Finance Associate at Goldman, Sachs & Co from 1998 to 2000 and a Financial Analyst in Investment Banking and Capital Markets at Goldman Sachs from 1993 to 1996.
 
She serves on the Board of Directors of Burch Barrell, she is an Advisory Board member at Clare V., a Board Member and Finance Chair of the Pacifica Christian High School; and Finance
Committee Member of the Park Century School. Ms. Lowe received a BA in International Relations from the University of
Pennsylvania, a BS in Finance from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, and an MBA from the Stanford
Graduate School of Business.
 
Favorite podcasts:
 

Kristin Halton :: Founder & Owner, The Halton Group

Kristin Halton The Halton Group

Kristin is a guru in the SoCal residential real estate market. She learned quickly and built her business based on integrity, impeccable customer service, and tenacity. 

I first met Kristin at our kids’ school. As a working mom, I could spot her a mile away. Sharp suit, incredible confidence, and why in the world would someone who’s 6′ tall wear 4″ heels? Because she COULD and SHOULD….so she did. 

Kristin has come alongside my family a few times as we’ve searched for just the right property for my parents. Sadly, this has been more therapist work for Kristin than actual sales, but what she’s taught me is that doing what you do, and continuing to do it with integrity always wins. 

Kristin’s a stand out in this business and I know you’re going to love this episode!

About Kristin Halton

Kristin Halton, founder & owner of the Halton Group, is ranked among the top-producing real estate agents nationwide. She is proud to offer 22 years of award-winning expertise and impeccable attention to detail to buyers and sellers throughout the prestigious coastal communities of Orange County.

 

Kristin’s proactive approach, combined with her genuine passion for real estate, has solidified her as a real estate leader within the community. Kristin and her entire team look forward to earning your trust and helping you discover the smarter way to buy or sell a home.

Andrew Cherng – Co-CEO & C0-Chairman Panda Express

Andrew Cherng, CEO and Chairman Panda Express

Andrew Cherng is Co-Founder and Co-CEO of Panda Express. He and his wife Peggy started the business a few years out of graduate school and have since grown it to nearly 2400 locations; mostly privately held and not franchised. Uncle Andrew, as I know him, was an investor in my company, snacki, in the early 2000s and I learned a lot about management and operations from him as he mentored me through that exciting chapter of my career. He’s always had a deep passion for people whether guests or employees.  

 

What strikes me about Panda is that they’re known for cultivating talent from within. They care for their teams and train people in all aspects of the business. We talk about how his hiring philosophy has changed over the years.  Andrew truly believes that people who develop good work habits can take that with them everywhere.

I just KNOW you’re going to learn so much from Andrew. He started in the kitchen and now delights us with fresh, delicious food, as well as fantastic leadership and management insights on this episode of MENTOR dna

About Andrew Cherng

As Co-Founder, Co-Chair and Co-CEO, Andrew Cherng is the visionary behind Panda Restaurant Group. His business insights have propelled Panda to become the world leader in Asian dining experiences, while his passion for continuous learning inspires a culture where associates are dedicated to developing their full potential.

Andrew’s business acumen has been recognized by Forbes magazine, the Los Angeles Business Journal and the Asia Society of Southern California. He was conferred an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters by California State Polytechnic University, Pomona and is a member of the International Advisory Board for the William F. Harrah College of Hospitality at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.

Under Andrew’s leadership, Panda Restaurant Group was named one of America’s best employers by Forbes and ranked the number one Asian quick-service concept by QSR. Additionally, he along with Panda Restaurant Group Co-Chairman and Co-CEO Peggy Cherng, have been inducted into the National Restaurant Association’s Hall of Fame and named Carnegie Corporation’s Great Immigrants.

Andrew earned a Bachelor of Science in mathematics from Baker University and Master of Applied Mathematics from the University of Missouri.

Jeff Stotland, EVP Hudson Pacific

Jeff Stotland Hudson Pacific

When I returned to Philly for my graduate work, I was a seasoned executive assistant with deep experience answering phones, sending faxes, and managing schedules for overly-busy Disney and Sony execs. Ok, so maybe I did slightly more than that, but I was at the bottom of the totem pole and had big goals of climbing my way up.

Jeff Stotland was my classmate in business school and was the only other person with Disney experience, albeit much different than mine. We became fast friends. He and I are kindred in our entrepreneurial spirit, both having run start-up like businesses within giant companies. 

Jeff has bought and sold several companies, worked at Disney as Vice President, Strategy & Global Development, and is now Executive Vice President of Global Studios and Production Services at Hudson Pacific, a joint venture with Blackstone, the world’s largest industrial real estate owner.

He’s always been a big picture guy, moving to where the puck is headed. At Hudson Pacific, he leads a team buying up content production space which has exploded in the past several years, and we chat about the human resource crunch to produce all this content.  

He and I agree that success requires taking risks and being bold, but most of the time, people are optimizing to preserve their own jobs. 

Jeff’s always taken risks, yet he’s learned how to be more calculated in his bets. He learned a lot during his stint trying to privatize companies in Eastern Europe and operating a handful of companies he bought or started.

This episode covers a lot of ground…from working at start-ups in eastern Europe in the late 90s, to Disneyphiles, to the extreme competition for industrial real estate worldwide and the macroeconomic impacts of building production studios in cities around the world. 

About Jeff Stotland

Jeff Stotland joined Hudson Pacific in 2021 and serves as Executive Vice President, Global Studios. He leads the growth, direction and daily operations of the company’s studio portfolio.

Prior to Hudson Pacific, Stotland served as Vice President of Strategy and Global Development at Disney with a focus on the Parks, Experiences and Products segment.  In this role, he worked on a variety of new business initiatives, acquisitions, strategic planning, joint venture management and real estate development, both domestically and internationally.

Before Disney, Stotland acquired and led SEMCO Aerospace, a privately held aviation maintenance company, for more than a decade. His early career included roles at Vulcan Ventures, The Walt Disney Company and J.P. Morgan.

Stotland earned a Master of Business Administration from The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania and a Bachelor of Science from Northwestern University.

Meesh Pierce – advisor, board member, podcaster

meesh pierce MENTOR dna podcast host

Welp, here it is. An episode where I get interviewed on my own show. Weird. Uncomfortable. Awkward. Yes, all of those things!

BUT, I was able to convince Wharton Professor Pete Fader to interview me! We chat about how I landed my first internship in the music industry, my transition into tech, and the crazy and bold things I’ve said to colleagues and bosses.

Leadership podcasts allow seasoned execs to share their stories and I hope you enjoy my journey. 

About Meesh Pierce

Meesh Pierce is a former tech executive who started her career in entertainment during the heyday of grunge rock. Her early days at Disney and Sony Music introduced her to the corporate world and importance of connectedness.

She worked long hours answering phones, faxing Winnie the Pooh and Lion King toy concepts to China, and sneaking into hole-in-the-wall concerts until the wee hours. During the early internet days, Meesh bet that tech was going to materially change the entertainment world, so she headed back to Philly for her 2nd stint at Wharton.

As a freshly-minted business school grad, she stepped into product management gigs for the likes of NBC, Sony Digital Entertainment, and Ticketmaster.

A risk taker, Meesh started an early dot com custom merch company, snacki, in the late 90s. A few years later, she took an opportunity to learn commercial and residential real estate development from a seasoned investor.

She spent 15 years as a hired gun consultant  stepping into difficult 1-2 year projects; those that needed someone adept at strategy, product and marketing, and comfortable navigating across divisions and up to the c-suite and board. As an independent consultant, she’s worked with Epson, Mercedes (AutoGravity), Fandango (NBC), and Amor Boutique Hotel amongst others.

Meesh now serves on boards, as advisor to several organizations, and mentor to many. She loves using her experience to make connections between people and ideas.

Meesh is equally left and right-brained. She drives an F-150 to support her furniture painting habits as there’s rarely an abandoned roadside furniture piece she doesn’t stop to investigate. She started documenting her furniture painting techniques at imeeshu.com and learned a great deal about SEO through her personal journey as a blogger.

She’s also an avid gardener and has built her own hydroponics greenhouse with a fully-functioning set-up for tomato and lettuce farming.

Meesh loves people and mentoring. She has many mentees stretching across all walks of life; from Broadway stars, to growth-minded entrepreneurs, to people in career or life transitions.   

Mark Bogh, President Bogh Engineering

mark-bogh-mentordna

During my tenure serving on the board at Mariners Christian School, we approved a $20M capital project to redesign our industrial concrete tilt-up building into a state of the art learning facility. Our goal was to provide more learning space, abundant natural light, and increased security.

When I first laid eyes on the plan, it was explained to me that the first step was to build a fire wall and elevator at a price tag that exceeded any amount ever raised in the history of the school. I wondered how we’d ever raise the money to get started, let alone finish this gargantuan project.

By the grace of God and the generosity of our family community, we were able to finish phase 1 of this project, albeit very much delayed, which didn’t significantly impact school operations, but certainly was stressful for the school team behind the scenes. 

Then started the search for the right firm to build Phase 2, which was substantially more structurally intensive. And, we needed to complete the work during a single summer if possible.

2 of the 3 firms returned with 12-24 month construction timelines. We weren’t willing to put students in temporary trailers and needed a more creative solution. 

Enter Mark Bogh, who came highly recommended by a member of our esteemed all-parent volunteer construction committee. Mark and his team build schools. They’ve built hundreds of schools. Mark’s values are in lock-step with our school’s mission and values. In preparation for our first meeting, he laid out a few options which clearly demonstrated that he’d studied our plans in great detail. He’d even gone so far as to talk to our neighbors about using their land for contingency purposes. One of his options was to complete the project in 6 months.

Now, if you’ve ever been through the bid process, which I have, you know that these types of promises are totally suspect and usually off-base. But there’s something about Mark and his team that immediately set you at ease. He knows his stuff, he’s laid out contingencies, he has his own team, he knows the city. 

Covid worked in our favor as our kids went to remote learning on March 13, 2020, and within 2 weeks, it was clear that we weren’t headed back anytime soon. The board agreed and we moved quickly to take advantage of the unexpected windfall of time. Mark’s team went to work, shifting all materials sourcing from China to Mexico and Canada. The teams predicted that China’s shutdown would become a long-term problem; they were right.

Mark led his team through the typical ups and downs of a large construction project and wad undeterred by the Covid impacts. Overall, the project was 3 weeks delayed mainly because the city’s inspectors 

About Mark Bogh

Mark Bogh is President of Bogh Engineering, a construction and engineering company focused on public works projects, particularly in educational facilities. He started his career at the City of Redlands, then to IWA Engineers, an firm that worked on a multitude of projects for Universal Studios and Knott’s Berry Farm. He quickly rose the ranks to become President of IWA, but felt a different calling. 

Mark decided to go back to his roots and build schools with his dad, so he joined Bogh Engineering, growing the firm from $1M in gross revenues to $60M over 20 years. The firm’s key distinction is most of its key tradespeople are full-time employees. This allows them to quickly shift gears and place people where needed in order to finish school construction projects that are inherently designed around very tight deadlines.  

Mark remains very involved with his community church and ministries throughout Southern California.