The SmartStory Team


C. Lloyd Mahaffey


C. Lloyd Mahaffey is a seasoned technology executive with more than 35 years of success in senior executive, marketing, sales, operations and venture capital roles for major technology companies and private equity firms, including Honeywell, Apple, VeriFone, Hewlett-Packard and Redleaf Venture Management.

Before joining SmartStory™ Technologies, he served as a managing partner at Carloma Group, LLC where he participated in aviation, technology, real estate development and renewable energy projects in the United States, South America and Europe. From 1998 to 2004, Mr. Mahaffey was a managing partner for Redleaf Venture Management, an early-stage infrastructure-oriented venture capital firm based in Saratoga, Calif.

From 1994 to 1998, he was senior vice president and chief operating officer at VeriFone, Inc., where he managed software development and Internet commerce initiatives. In 1996, he was promoted to chief operating officer and, in 1997, he led the team that negotiated the $1.3 billion acquisition of VeriFone by Hewlett-Packard.

Earlier in his career, Mr. Mahaffey held a number of senior executive positions at Apple Computer Inc. As the company’s Southeast regional manager in the early 1980s, he grew the business unit’s revenues from $25 million to $250 million. Later, as director of Apple’s Education Group in Cupertino, Calif., he helped grow Apple’s global education revenues from $250 million to $1.2 billion. He also headed Apple’s Federal Systems Group, where he was responsible for worldwide marketing, sales and systems integration to the U.S. government.

Mr. Mahaffey earned a bachelor’s degree, with honors, at The Citadel, and attended Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business Technology Executive Program.

Michael Boerner


Michael Boerner has 24 years of experience founding and leading media and technology companies. Before founding SmartStory™ Technologies in 2012, he launched Unity Media Group, a provider of enterprise platforms and services that allow companies in healthcare delivery and other sectors to create, deliver and manage digital video content targeting customers and other key audiences. He also founded Unity Medical, Inc., a provider of digital educational tools for enhancing patient experiences.

The companies’ clients included Johnson & Johnson, DePuy Synthes Companies, Covidien, St. Luke’s Health System, K12, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Duke Medical Center and the Ken Blanchard Companies. Mr. Boerner also founded Mission Media, a 501(c) 3 values-based media-syndication company.

In his previous positions, he was responsible for raising more than $20 million in capital. He also developed several business and video-based methodologies and technologies to allow personalized customer engagement.

In addition to being a national award-winning film and video producer, Mr. Boerner is a TEDMED 2013 Frontline Scholar. He serves on the Idaho Governor’s Coordinating Council for Families and Children and on the board of directors for the National Institute of Marriage.

Mr. Boerner has appeared nationally on CNN, Fox News, ABC Radio Network News, as well as in numerous press articles.

Evans Baiya PhD

SVP and CTO 

Dr. Baiya, as CTO, oversees technology and product development for SmartStory™ solutions. Evans has over 15 years in developing enterprise products and innovations for various industries. He spent 10 years in executive technology leadership at Silicon Valley based Applied Materials, Inc., where he held global level positions in engineering, technology, and business development.

As a successful author, Dr. Baiya has published more than thirty peer-reviewed publications and holds several technology patents. He has received multiple awards in areas of academia, innovations and professional/community leadership (Idaho Accomplished Under 40 award). He is a sought-after speaker and consultant in the area of technology innovations and new product development.

Dr. Baiya holds a PhD in engineering and technology development and an MBA from Northwest Nazarene University. He is also a graduate of the Harvard Business School’s Executive program with an emphasis in business strategy and intellectual property.

Clay Conner

VP, Client Services

Clay Conner brings extensive experience in strategic planning, product planning, project management, marketing and sales to SmartStory™ Technologies. Most recently, he co-founded 5 Degrees North, Inc., a process-engineering firm; and The Conner Group, a consultancy for young, fast-growing companies.

He has a proven track record as a consultant to Fortune 500 firms and government entities. He co-developed and delivered a process-improvement methodology that has created more than $300 million in documented value for clients such as BASF, Johnson & Johnson, Callaway Golf, Williams Energy, Eastman Chemical, SABIC (formerly GE Plastics), Honda of America, Lanxess, Basic American Foods, the U.S. Navy and the U.S. Army.

Earlier in his career, he was general manager of IDACORP Solutions, an energy-services company. At IDACORP, he directed a group of engineers, product managers and other marketing professionals in developing and marketing a full suite of energy-related products and services to commercial and industrial clients in the Western U.S.

Mr. Conner earned a bachelor’s degree in economics from Boise State University.

Marcus Hackler

Director of Story

Marcus Hackler is an accomplished executive producer, creative director and filmmaker with over 12 years experience bringing stories from script to screen. 

Starting in the newspaper industry and working with non-profit and for-profit companies in various capacities, Marcus developed a deep background in film directing, cinematography, visual design, animation, story composition, content development strategies, marketing, and live events.

With this experience he transitioned to leadership roles where he successfully led creative and technical production teams of various sizes to produce a wide variety of creative projects and large scale live events with diverse applications, budgetary requirements and scope parameters.

Marcus earned his bachelor’s degree in quantitative economics from Boise State University in 2007. From 1999 to 2003 he served in the United States Navy where he participated in various combat missions including Operation Enduring Freedom.


Timothy Johans, M.D.

American Board of Neurological Surgeons Diplomat, American College of Surgeons

Dr. Johans is a board-certified and Fellowship-trained neurosurgeon with special interests in surgical management of spinal and brain conditions. Dr. Johans completed his general and neurosurgical residencies at the Oregon Health Sciences University. Dr. Johans is committed to a lifetime of learning and enjoys utilizing technology for patient education and healing. He is an avid outdoorsman who enjoys hiking, biking, and sailing.

Richard Caccappolo

Chief Operating Officer, MailOnline.Com

Richard Caccappolo is currently the Chief Operating Officer of, the most successful online media site in the world. Prior to, he was the SVP of iVillage and is one of the leading digital media executives in NYC. He has over 20 years of experience in e-commerce, digital monetization, new media and product development.

Mr. Caccappolo served as the Chief Executive Officer of ORCA Digital Services Inc. at oneTXT, Inc., as Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer of iVillage Inc., as the Chief Technology Officer of Kodak Polychrome Graphics and as Director, Information Systems, Europe at Sun Chemicals. Before joining Sun Chemicals he served as Senior Manager of Andersen Consulting (now Accenture). He has been recognized for leading the development of interactive and community features throughout his career.

Mr. Caccappolo received his M.B.A. from New York University, Leonard N. Stern School of Business and his B.S. from Cornell University.

Roger Hefflinger, PharmD.


Dr. Hefflinger received his Doctor of Pharmacy degree from the University of Nebraska and completed a Clinical Pharmacy Residency at the University of Nebraska Medical Center. He has spent the last 25 years assisting with physician training and education in in-patient and ambulatory care environments. His areas of interest include asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease management, pain management, infectious disease, and the appropriate usage of medications for chronic diseases such as hypertension, diabetes, depression, and arthritis.

Cynthia Sass, R.D.

Best Selling Author & Registered Dietitian

Cynthia Sass is a nationally known nutrition and health expert, based in New York City and Los Angeles. For years, Cynthia has been a go-to resource for the media. She has appeared on the Today Show, Good Morning America, The Early Show & CBS This Morning, The Rachel Ray Show, The Biggest Loser, The Dr. Oz Show, The Martha Stewart Show, Nightline, ABC World News Tonight, CNN, Extra, The Insider, Access Hollywood Live, and Fox News. She is a New York Times Best Selling Author.

Cynthia graduated with highest honors from Syracuse University where she received a bachelor’s degree in nutrition/dietetics and a master’s degree in nutrition science with a concentration in counseling. She completed a second master’s degree in public health with a concentration in community and family health education at the University of South Florida.

Douglas Dammrose, M.D.

Retired SVP, Chief Medical Officer, Blue Cross of Idaho 

Dr. Dammrose is currently the Medical Director of Idaho Medical Review, LLC, with a focus on care management for the indigent. He recently retired from Blue Cross of Idaho where he served as Senior Vice President/Chief Medical Officer. He was also board certified in internal medicine prior to coming to Blue Cross in 1996.

Dr. Dammrose has been involved in healthcare issues in Idaho, serving as co-chairman of the Carrier Advisory Committee, and physician advisor for the Quality Improvement Committee at West Valley Medical Center. He was also assistant clinical coordinator for Pro-West, a peer review organization, and clinical faculty for the University of Washington. He is a member of the American Medical Association, the American College of Physicians, and Alpha Omega Alpha. He is also a member of the Idaho Medical Association. While at Blue Cross Dr. Dammrose was instrumental in building a robust medical management department with internally developed programs for prevention, wellness, disease management, case management, utilization management, and behavioral health. During his tenure at Blue Cross the company enjoyed significant growth in membership while exceeding financial targets.

Doug received his Bachelor of Science from Washington State University in Zoology; a D.D.S. at the University of Washington; an M.D. at the University of New Mexico School of Medicine; and completed his residency in Internal Medicine at the University of Washington.

Annessa Chumbley, R.D.

Registered Dietitian

Annessa Chumbley is a registered dietitian and creator of Flourish! LLC. Flourish’s mission is to see lives transformed through true nourishment of the mind and body. Having worked in Bariatrics for several years, Annessa holds each one of her patients in a special place in her heart. Annessa began Flourish when she started cooking classes for her patients, and the classes exploded with more attendees than the room could hold. Through Flourish she created and produced healthy cooking videos for Bariatric patients. She began doing her own weekly “Living Well” segment for Indianapolis’ FOX 59 Morning News, and then was requested to move to WISH-TV’s new lifestyle talk show, IndyStyle, where she contributes weekly segments and backup co-hosting.

Annessa is a TV personality for local cooking show, Survival Secrets…Firing Up Your Day!, a show that helps those on a budget eat and cook healthfully. She does cooking demonstrations and keynote presentations for corporations, Bariatric centers, Whole Foods, events, health expos, and farmers markets. She is recipe creator for prestigious healthcare corporations. Her tips and tricks have been featured in several magazines, newsletters, and radio shows.

She attended Florida College, graduated cum lade from Western Kentucky University, and completed her dietetic internship through Indiana University. She is involved in volunteering at homeless shelters, food banks, and girls clubs. Annessa lives in Indianapolis with her husband and baby girl. She is passionate about the power of nutritious food! Get ready for some “health food cravings!”

Vince Kuraitis

Principal and founder of Better Health Technologies, LLC

Vince brings 30 years of healthcare experience in multiple roles: President, VP Corporate Development, VP operations, management consultant, and marketing executive. His consulting and work projects span 150+ different healthcare organizations, including hospitals, physician groups, IT, medical devices, pharma, health plans, disease management, home health, and others.

Vince is on the editorial advisory boards of Accountable Care News and Population Health News. He served as a Board member of the Collaborative Health Consortium. He serves on the ASTM International E31 Technical Committee on Healthcare Informatics (CCR). He is also a member of the California State Bar (inactive).

His education includes MBA and JD degrees from UCLA, and a BS degree in business administration from USC.

Rhonda Shantz

VP of Marketing, Rocket Fuel, LLC.

Rhonda has more than 24 years of award-winning senior leadership experience as a Digital and Brand Marketer, Change Agent and Creative Communicator delivering B2B and B2C-oriented strategies. She is proficient at integrated marketing campaigns that drive business results and customer loyalty.

Rhonda received her MBA from California State University-Sacramento and a Bachelor of Applied Science (BASc) in Computer Science at CSU Chico.

Larry Ruff

Retired CMO, Levi Strauss

Larry Ruff is an independent Strategy, Marketing and Retail consultant focused on the areas of global brand management, modern marketing, digital transformation & multi-channel retail. Clients include small, medium and large corporations, global brands, higher education and financial and investment institutions.

Larry is also an Advisor to World 50, Inc. World 50 provides C-level executives from global organizations a private, trusted peer forum for knowledge exchange and exploration of issues senior-most executives find critical to their businesses. World 50 peer communities include Marketing 50 (CMOs), Chief Executive 50 (CEOs), Human Resources 50, Supply Chain 50, Strategy 50 and other similar. Larry has over 30 years of experience working for world-class, consumer-focused, global brands. Before engaging in his work as an independent consultant, Larry worked for Levi Strauss & Company for many years holding a variety of leadership positions in marketing, strategy and general management. Most recently, in his role as Chief Strategy Officer, Larry led development of the Company’s overall growth and brand portfolio strategy. Earlier in his career, Larry held a variety of positions in brand management with Procter & Gamble and production planning with Maidenform, Inc.

Larry received a Bachelor of Arts degree with Honors from Rutgers College and a Master of Business Administration from Cornell University’s Johnson Graduate School of Management. Larry also successfully completed Columbia University’s Graduate School of Business Executive Education program in Digital Marketing Strategy.

Lucy Carter

Retired Director of Global Training, Apple

Lucy Carter recently retired as the Head of the Education Division for  In that role, Lucy was responsible for the development of the K-12 and Higher Education market, products and services.

Lucy also served as Director of Apple Global Training for many years.  In that role she was responsible for the development and delivery of sales, product, technical and customer training and communications. Her target audience included over 300,000 people in Apple’s direct sales forces, retail stores, iPhone carriers and channel partners worldwide.  For her innovative work at Apple and throughout her career, Lucy was awarded a Lifetime Impact Award by The Maisie Institute at the Learning 2007 Conference.

Lucy also worked for Apple, Inc. from 1984-1996 where she was Director of Learning Market Development responsible for learning market investments, products, alliances and technologies. Before that role, Lucy served as Director of Worldwide Performance Systems. Under her direction, Apple developed and implemented ARPLE, Apple’s worldwide performance support system, the first just-in time learning technology developed for knowledge workers. She was also responsible for the customer research and competitive analysis groups and managed Apple’s video and TV services. Before assuming this role, Lucy held a variety of sales and management positions in Apple’s field organization.

Lucy holds a bachelor’s degree in educational psychology from the University of Tennessee and has done post-graduate work in art.

Sam S. Zacharias

Principal and Senior Partner, Gateway Financial Group, Inc.

Mr. Zacharias is a founder, current Principal and Senior Partner of Gateway Financial Group, Inc. He has been engaged in the insurance industry, estate planning and financial advising for over 40 years. He is a Chartered Life Underwriter (CLU) and a Chartered Financial consultant (ChFC). He is Chairman and Director of BPL Global LLC, on the Reclamate, LLC Board, is the Chairman of Economics Pennsylvania, and Co-Chairman of the Governor Richard Thornburgh Forum at the University of Pittsburgh.

Mr. Zacharias is currently a University of Pittsburgh Trustee and a past member of the Board of Directors of the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC). Sam is a University of Pittsburgh graduate, where he received his BS degree in mathematics. He has served as President of the Alumni Association and assisted in a wide variety of university-related projects.

Mr. Zacharias is active in charitable and community service endeavors, serving on the Board of the Multiple Sclerosis Society, and has, for over 38 years, been a primary force in the Andy Russell Golf Classic which has raised millions of dollars for Children’s Hospital, the Hillman Cancer Center, the University of Pittsburgh Brain Institute, and others.

Keith Schaefer

Executive Chairman, City Paper Box

Keith Schaefer brings more than 25 years of leadership experience to his position of Chairman, City Paper Box, an international manufacturer of paper products serving the food service industry. Throughout his career, he has held a variety of senior management positions with companies ranging from hyper‐growth start‐ups to Fortune 100s and a Global 500 company. Shortly after launching his career in sales and marketing at Procter & Gamble, followed by Clorox, Mr. Schaefer achieved the position of Executive Vice President at Atari Corporation. Since then, he has co‐founded or led more than ten start‐ups and two buy‐outs, and was instrumental in completing two Initial Public Offerings and nine trade sales.

Previously, Mr. Schaefer served as Chief Executive Officer and President of BPL Global, Ltd., a smart grid, clean technology company he co-founded in 2006. In that capacity, he planned, directed and managed all aspects of the company’s strategy, business development, joint venture partnerships and financing. Recognized for outstanding leadership, Mr. Schaefer was named an Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year in 2007 in the western Pennsylvania region and CEO of the Year in 2009 by the Pittsburgh Technology Council.

Prior to leading BPL Global, Mr. Schaefer held a number of top-level executive posts including Senior Partner at Constellation Partners, Executive Partner and member of the Executive Committee at US Web/CKS, Executive Vice President at Viacom and President of Paramount Communications Technology Group. While at Paramount, he established and successfully led the Venture Capital Group and set up early initiatives and strategic alliances with Microsoft and AOL.

In the education and information technology sectors, Mr. Schaefer held presidential and CEO positions at Computer Curriculum Corporation, Worlds of Wonder, and NEC Technologies. Mr. Schaefer also co‐authored the bestselling Internet marketing book Net Results, which is used as a reference text at leading business schools.

Committed to mentoring college students, he established the Schaefer Family Scholarship Fund at the University of Pittsburgh and provides internship opportunities for recent graduates. Mr. Schaefer also currently serves as an Advisory Board Member of the Hesselbein Global Academy for Student Leadership and Civic Engagement.

Mr. Schaefer attended UCLA’s Graduate School of Business after earning a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Pittsburgh, where he served as a past President of the Alumni Association. As university Trustee, he sat on the Institutional Advancement Committee which led their $2 billion capital campaign to a successful conclusion. Today, Mr. Schaefer serves as Chairman of the University’s Student Affairs Committee, member of the Executive Committee and the Student Academics Committee. He also is a member of the Board of Governors at the Hesselbein Leadership Institute and Board of Advisors at CapRock Partners.

Dr. Ronald Linaburg

DMD, Executive Director of Associated Dental Specialists 

Dr. Ronald G. Linaburg is a native of Western Pennsylvania, attended the University of Pittsburgh for predoctoral studies, graduating with a Bachelor of Science degree. In 1968, he received a DMD degree from the University of Pittsburgh, School of Dental Medicine. After a two-year private practice of general dentistry, in 1970 entered The Ohio State University, College of Dentistry Graduate Endodontic Program. In 1972, received his Endodontic Certificate and Master of Science Degree in Endodontics. In 1972, Dr. Linaburg was appointed Associate Professor and Director of the Department of Endodontics at The Ohio State University, College of Dentistry. In 1974 he began a practice limited to endodontics in Bethel Park, Pennsylvania. Dr. Linaburg has continuously maintained membership in the American Dental Association, Pennsylvania Dental Association and the Western Pennsylvania Dental Society. He maintains membership in the American Association of Endodontics and has served as the regional tri-state spokesman for the American Association of Endodontists. He has been active in education as a professor, clinician and guest lecturer locally, regionally and nationally contributing to dental literature in both the education and clinical Endodontic fields. Dr. Linaburg practiced endodontics exclusively since 1972 and is the founder of Associated Dental Specialists and serves as its Executive Director.



Chris DiGiorgio

Executive Chairman 

Chris DiGiorgio, until his recent retirement, was the lead for Accenture’s Silicon Valley Office of Emerging Technology. In this role, he focused on identifying and developing relationships with early stage tech companies that tie directly to Accenture’s technology vision. His scope included Mobility, Security, Cloud, Big Data, Analytics, Social Media, and other related enterprise technologies. In addition, he had responsibility for the overall practice in Northern California of over 2200 people.

Mr. DiGiorgio served on the North American Executive Committee for Accenture for the past 4 years. He has more than 30 years of experience in a broad range of business and IT services at over 60 clients worldwide. He previously led Accenture’s High Tech practice in the Silicon Valley through the Pacific Northwest. In addition to his North American clients, he also spent more than 6 years serving global clients in Asia Pacific and Europe.

Mr. DiGiorgio holds a B.S., Computer Science and a B.S., Business Administration from California State University.

Brian Myers

Brian Myers recently completed a successful term as a senior executive with Five Point Communities, overseeing the development of the 4,600-acre conversion of the MCAS El Toro Marine Base into the Orange County Great Park Neighborhoods. The $3 Billion project includes 10,000 residential units, 4 million square feet of commercial and the largest 21st Century metropolitan park project in the country totaling over 1,200 acres.  Mr. Myers will continue in his capacity as owner of Nuquest Ventures, LLC, an Irvine based real estate development and advisory company.

Over the past two decades, Mr. Myers has been a prominent real estate advisor and development partner to many government agencies and corporations across the country through his company, Nuquest Ventures. Mr. Myers has managed the entitlement and development of master planned communities and urban infill projects with over 30,000 residential lots, 25M square feet of commercial/office/retail and public facilities such as professional sports stadiums, city halls, community centers and large-scale parks. Advising clients such as Hanson Aggregates, PLC, Heidelberg Cement, The Irvine Company, and major cities throughout California, Mr. Myers has provided value enhancing advisory services, strategic advice, and organizational development tools to implement large-scale development activity. Mr. Myers has also been responsible for leading innovation efforts within large real estate organizations to make them more productive and improve communications.

A graduate of Stanford University in Economics, Mr. Myers has an extensive history in the real estate industry with nearly 30 years of development experience. He serves on the boards of The Great Park Foundation, Reed College Strategic Planning Group and the Irvine Library Foundation. Mr. Myers is a frequent speaker on the topic of structuring public/private partnerships and innovation in the real estate industry as a featured speaker for ULI, NAID, NAIOP, ICSC, CAL-CMA, ICSC and CoreNET

Allen Plunk

Allen Plunk is a senior executive with over 25 years of experience delivering global technology and technology-enabled services – the last 10 years of which have been focused on revenue cycle management solutions for healthcare providers. Allen’s career has shown the proven ability to scale and grow organizations from start-up to $1B in annual revenue and understands the challenges of running a business and developing a dynamic team. Allen was recently the President of PatientMatters and prior to that the Chief Operating Officer of Optum360 where he is responsible for strategic development, business planning, infrastructure and operations. He joined Optum in 2009 through its acquisition of CareMedic Systems, where he had served as its Chief Financial Officer and Chief Operating Officer. Prior to this, Allen began his career with Coopers & Lybrand followed by various finance and operations leadership roles in start-up and venture-backed technology companies. Allen is Certified Public Accountant and is a member of several industry advisory boards.

Nicholas Preftakes

Mr. Nicholas Preftakes is the Chairman, President and owner of Precor Fund Equity, Inc. in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, and its subsidiary companies including Precor Realty Advisors, Inc. He oversees the firm’s commercial real estate holdings, developments, acquisitions and private equity investments. He has over 35 years of real estate lending experience, previously working with Henderson National Corporation as CFO from February 1988 to December 1989 and serving as VP and SVP between August 1984 and February 1988. Previously, he was with Liberty National Bank and Trust and Norwest Bank Iowa, specializing in commercial real estate lending.

He is involved with many local organizations, including the Oklahoma City Chamber of Commerce, CareMedic Systems, Inc., Phasient Learning Technologies, Inc., Sage Electrochromics, Inc.; and is a school board appointee with Oklahoma City Public Schools Bond Issue Planning Committee, Mayoral Appointee for Mayor’s Task Force on Neighborhood Revitalization, and Cultural Development Corporation of Central Oklahoma.

Mr. Preftakes holds an MBA in Finance from the University of Iowa and a B.S. in Physics from University of Iowa.

C. Lloyd Mahaffey

C. Lloyd Mahaffey, the Chief Operating Officer, serves as one of the two Directors representing management. His bio is listed under Executive Bios.