Meet Our Executive Team
Our staff is comprised of seasoned business and technical people. We all have between 10-20 years of experience with CRM and ERP systems, for a combined 100+ years of technology business experience. Our brain trust of expertise ensures your project deploys on time and on budget.
James Ward, President & CEO
When Jim Ward founded BrainSell in 1994, his goal was to give businesses the insights and tools needed to thrive, even in challenging economies. A prominent turnaround specialist, Ward had spent more than 23 years helping small-to-medium businesses apply innovative sales and marketing techniques in order to improve performance. Having helped a variety of U.S. and Canadian companies transform into growing, profitable organizations, Ward determined that strategic CRM (customer relationship management) was key to each company's success.
Since then, Ward has built BrainSell into a dynamic business software reseller organization that is dedicated to helping customers achieve business success. His focus on hiring technology professionals with real-world experience, and making them an integral part of their customers' teams, has enabled BrainSell to develop a strong base of satisfied customers who rave about the company's ability to deliver bottom-line results. Having experienced year-over-year growth since its founding, BrainSell became a Top 10 Business Partner for Sage Software in North America under Ward's leadership.
Ward is a recognized expert in business software. He has addressed many organizations and published a variety of articles on how to use CRM to enhance sales and business prosperity.
Ward has served on Sage Software's CRM division Business Partner Advisory Council sub-committees.
An honors graduate from Bentley College, Ward is committed to giving back to the community. Driven by the belief that hard work and integrity pay dividends, Ward devotes time to a variety of civic projects.
Sonja Fridell, General Manager & Sr. Director of Marketing & Business Development
Sonja leads BrainSell's marketing, social media and business development operations.. As an ex-journalist, she is adept at creating remarkable content for the BrainSell brand. She is passionate about social media and can be found on Twitter (@Brainsell) and other social networks habitually. She is an honors graduate of the University of New Hampshire and lives on the New Hampshire Seacoast with her fiance, cat, dog and horse.
Ross Jones, Senior Vice President of Sales Engineering
With a background in science, the military, and industry, Ross has applied his sales, management, and interpersonal skills in a wide variety of environments. Ross has managed sales teams as well as customer service and technical support groups.
He has lived and worked in both the UK and Germany and brings to the BrainSell team valuable experience of building relationships with clients - especially those from different cultures and languages. In his previous company, he gained extensive experience by spearheading the deployment and use of SalesLogix as the company's key CRM application. Ross has been with BrainSell for eight years, and as VP Sales Engineering he has prime responsibility for North East regional sales.
Kevin Cook, Vice President of Sales
Kevin has degrees in physics and journalism and more than 10 years experience in media and high-tech. As our Vice President of Open Source Practice, Kevin has deep expertise in search engine marketing and optimization. He is an expert in database marketing and cross-function, multi-discipline work. Having worked as a web site programmer, Kevin is adept at developing work-flow within marketing departments and building the infrastructure necessary to make that work-flow efficient.
Kellie Pitt, ERP Solution Manager & Controller
Kellie joined the BrainSell team in 2011 to run daily operations and keep all members of BrainSell sane. Kellie also assists with marketing, event coordination and project management for BrainSell. Based on her in depth knowledge of using our internal ERP solution, Kellie has been promoted to ERP Solution Manager.
Kellie is passionate about technology, having grown up in a household full of computers and run by robots. Kellie's stellar web 2.0 skills are an asset to the company as a whole.
Kellie is a Florida native who now lives in Massachusetts with her boyfriend, four cats and dog. When she's not running the office, she can be found at home creating delicious baked goods or exploring New England with her family.
Fred Wright, Vice President ERP Technology
Fred has been supporting the SAGE MAS 500 product since the release of version 1.5 and has continuously worked to implement, train, customize and support all versions since then. He has over 20 years experience in the field of IT, with the majority of that specifically focused on ERP solutions. In addition the MAS 500 line, he has hands-on experience with a full range of small and large products from Quickbooks to Lawson, as well as peripheral systems that include Frx, Crystal, FAS, ABRA and SQL.
Fred provides value to clients by focusing on the business processes and hidden needs of each individual client. He has created and implemented solutions providing an effective solution for operational support, addressing reporting needs and identifying inefficiencies in existing processes. His experience spans many industries, including health care, manufacturing, mining and service industries, to name a few.
Fred has his BS degree in Political Science from Lindenwood University in St. Charles, MO and his MBA in Management of Technology from the Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta, GA. He currently resides north of Atlanta with his wife, Susan, and daughter, Lily.
Avron Katz, Senior ERP Engineer
Avron Katz is president of K-Four Systems, LLc. and has worked as a consultant in the accounting technology field for over 30 years. Prior to starting his own company, he was a partner at Fantasia & Company for 20 years. Avron is a CPA and a Chartered Accountant in South Africa. He has done implementation and training on Sage products both domestically and internationally, and has experience with a wide range of companies, from small businesses to publicly held companies. He has developed workflow procedures and integrated external software with the back office ERP systems. He is married and has two daughters. His interests are reading, music and photography.
Tammy Hart, Senior Accounting Engineer
Tammy has been in the accounting and bookkeeping profession for 35 years, 25 of which have been as accounting and payroll manager at the amusement park, Funtown Splashtown USA in Saco, Maine. She is a certified QuickBooks Pro Advisor, Peachtree certified and is currently finishing her MAS 90 certification.
Tammy developed a strong worth ethic during her seven years in the Navy as a systems analyst and data processing technician. She was stationed in Iceland, San Francisco and Brunswick, Maine during her tenure. Tammy attended The University of Southern Maine in Portland. She resides in Biddeford, Maine with her husband, where they are currently restoring their 1910 Victorian home.
Andrea Appleby, Senior ERP Engineer
Andrea Appleby has over 30 years experience with ERP systems. After graduating from Colorado State University with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, Accounting Concentration with a minor in Computer Science, she started her career as a programmer writing accounting software, then went to work for a CPA firm in the Business Consulting division. She was quickly promoted and became the youngest Manager on the staff. She left the CPA firm to start AccSoft Associates, Inc. with Pat Smith. AccSoft specialized in implementing ERP systems including Sage ERP 300. AccSoft became part of Brainsell team in January of 2012.
Her goal is to have all customers view their software systems and Brainsell as an asset not a liability. Her skills include software implementation, ongoing support, training as well as programming, long range systems planning and software selection. She is also an expert in VBA macros and Crystal Reports. She has been supporting Sage ERP 300 (formerly Sage Accpac ERP) since 1987 and is certified in all modules.
She resides in Colorado with her husband and two Labradors. She spends her free time rock climbing, mountain and road biking, skiing and traveling.
Michelle Montgomery, Senior ERP/Accounting Engineer
Michelle Montgomery has been a SAGE Software MAS 90/200 certified trainer and consulting professional for over eight years and has more than 15 years of experience in accounting. She has played an intricate role in all aspects of MAS 90/200 solutions at BrainSell, from Project Leader for new implementations to upgrades to support and services including data conversion. Michelle is an expert in report writing services using FRx Financial Reporter and Crystal Reports. With a background in business accounting and past experience as a Controller for a small manufacturing/job shop, Michelle has working knowledge of how accounting systems should integrate to support a variety of real-life business processes.
Steve Sakoff, Senior Business Consultant
After graduating from Emory University in Atlanta, GA with a BBA in Accounting and Finance, Steve went to work for Sears, Roebuck and Co. During the mid 1980's, Steve worked in the Sear's home office at the Sears Tower in Chicago setting up financial systems for a joint venture between Sears and a Oriental Global Trading company, called Sears World Trade. In 1990, Steve joined Crawford & Company, the world's largest independent provider of claims management solutions to insurance companies and self-insured entities, as the Catastrophe Division Financial Manager.
In 1993, Steve became an owner/partner in Paradime Solutions Inc. This position enabled him to use his experience and expertise in accounting, financial system, personal management, problem solving, and interpersonal skills developed over a 23 year career.
As a Sage Accpac Authorized Business Partner and Certified Consultant, Steve has had the privilege of helping diverse companies implement business management solutions that have propelled them forward to continue their success. Steve is married to Candy and they have one daughter, Dana.
Curtis Lau, Senior Business Consultant
After graduating from the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill, NC with a B.S. in Business Administration, Curtis served active duty in the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve and then went to work for Sears, Roebuck and Co. At the time, the retailer was just developing and rolling out computerized systems that replaced manual procedures for handling sales, inventory, credit, payroll, distribution, cash management, and accounting in stores and distribution centers. After serving in accountant and controller positions, Curtis was involved in the implementation and ultimately the design of these systems.
In 1991 Curtis founded the business which became Paradime Solutions, Inc., and began his relationship with Accpac software. Paradime Solutions is a Sage Accpac Authorized Business Partner providing software sales and consulting services to small to medium sized businesses in many industries, as well as to non-profits and government agencies.
Curtis has two daughters and two granddaughters. He is active in Rotary and was elected president of his Rotary club for the 2006-2007 year. He enjoys landscape photography, travel, reading, and a second home in the northeast Georgia mountains.
Jim Brummett, Senior Business Consultant
Jim Brummett joined the Brainsell team in January of 2012. He has sold, implemented and supported Sage 300 (Accpac) for over 25 years. As a former Manufacturing Systems Manager at a division of Hewlett-Packard, he offers us a depth of experience in distribution and manufacturing. He also spent 8 years as V.P. of Client Consulting for a national software marketing communications firm before aligning his own ERP practice with Sage and Accpac. Besides ERP expertise, Jim also specializes in the e.Commerce marketplace.
He lives in Colorado Springs, Colorado with his wife Nancy. They have 4 children and 12 grandchildren and has truly earned the title of "Senior Business Consultant."
Jacqueline White, General Counsel
Jacqueline White has been practicing law for the past 25 years with experience in both the private and public sector, having received her Bachelor of Science degree from Cornell University and her law degree from Northeastern University.
Jacqueline is a member of both the Massachusetts and New York Bar. She served as a law clerk to the Superior Court Justices of Massachusetts; was an associate at Burns & Levinson, LLP; an advocate for South Middlesex Legal Services; the managing attorney for the Tobacco Products Liability Project; and a Cooperative Coordinator at the College of Criminal Justice, at Northeastern University. Jacqueline joined the BrainSell team in the fall of 2013 as general counsel for the company.
Jacqueline also served on the executive board of the Boston Latino Professional Network and on the financial planning board for Senator Jarred Barrios. Jacqueline currently is a board member for the Topsfield Cultural Council and Friends of the Topsfield Library.
Sam Ward, Inside Support Representative
Sam joined the BrainSell team during the summer of 2013 immediately after graduating from the Berklee College of Music with a degree in drum performance, graduating Magna Cum Laude.
Sam provides internal support to the team at BrainSell headquarters. A multifaceted renaissance man, Sam splits his work day between the accounting and marketing departments. Sam can be found playing in one of his three bands at different venues around Boston and surrounding states. In addition, Sam provides drum lessons on his time away from the office.
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