Zachary First

Executive Director

Zachary First

Executive Director

Zach joined the Drucker Institute team in 2007, and was named executive director in 2016. Under his leadership, the Drucker Institute has created the annual Management Top 250 ranking in The Wall Street Journal, the S&P/Drucker Institute Corporate Effectiveness Portfolio with First Trust, the KH Moon Center for a Functioning Society and the Bendable lifelong learning system.

Zach has written for The Wall Street Journal, Barron’s, Harvard Business Review, S&P Indexology and Harvard Magazine, and contributed the afterword to the 50th Anniversary Edition of Peter Drucker’s classic The Effective Executive.

Previously, Zach served as the inaugural assistant dean at Olin College, which was founded in 2000 with a $430 million gift from the F. W. Olin Foundation in order to reinvent engineering education. He holds a B.A. in philosophy from Haverford College, where his advisor was Lucius Outlaw, Jr. He earned his masters and doctorate degrees in higher education from Harvard University, with Richard Chait as his mentor.

In 2020, Zach was named a visiting professor at Otemon Gakuin University in Osaka, Japan. He has served as a trustee and, from 2014–2018, president of the board of the Children’s Center at Caltech, one of America’s leading nonprofit providers of innovative STEM-based early childhood and preschool education. From 2013-2016, Zach was a member of the Board of Advisors at PayScale, creator of the world’s largest database of individual compensation profiles. And from 2009-2011, he was a fellow of the National Forum on the Future of Liberal Education.

Ann Cross

Spring Cleaning lead

Ann Cross

Spring Cleaning lead

Ann leads design and development of Spring Cleaning. For more than two decades, she has developed, launched and marketed global brands in the entertainment and consumer products industries, as well as the nonprofit sector. Along with her work at the Drucker Institute, Ann is CEO of a startup company designing and developing the fine wine industry in the Kingdom of Bhutan. She also advises MBA students at the Paul Merage School of Business at UC Irvine. Ann has an undergraduate degree from Indiana University and an MBA from the University of California, Irvine—and is one of only 1,500 Americans with a diploma from the Wine & Spirits Education Trust, a renowned multi-year wine and spirits industry program.

Lex Dennis

Director of Lifelong Learning

Lex Dennis

Director of Lifelong Learning

Lex leads development of the Drucker Institute’s lifelong learning system for cities, which is currently being piloted in South Bend, Indiana.

In his previous role, Lex served as the Chief Strategy Officer of enFocus, Inc, a nascent organization centered on building better communities through talent attraction and civic innovation. At enFocus, Lex was responsible for the design and execution of major strategic initiatives. As the organization’s second staff hire, Lex was instrumental in catalyzing 400% growth in revenue from 2013-2018.

Lex graduated from the University of Notre Dame with Bachelor’s degrees in Political Science and Spanish. He is a New Jersey native and loves reading and, when he’s not at work, playing and watching sports.

T.A. Frank

Writer

T.A. Frank

Writer

In addition to his work writing Courage for the Drucker Institute, Tom writes for Vanity Fair and is a contributing editor at the Washington Monthly. Prior to entering journalism, he worked in Los Angeles in the field of corporate social responsibility monitoring, visiting factories in California and around the world to assess their labor conditions. Tom earned a B.A. in East Asian studies from Columbia University in 2000. In the 1990s, he played bass for the rock band Jonathan Fire-Eater, and he’s always happy to meet the odd soul who’s heard of it.

Lawrence Greenspun

Director of Public Sector Engagement

Lawrence Greenspun

Director of Public Sector Engagement

Lawrence developed and delivers the Drucker Playbook for the Public Sector and the Drucker + ELGL Public Sector Leadership Certificate Program, the latter in conjunction with the Drucker School of Management at Claremont Graduate University and Engaging Local Government Leaders (ELGL). Both initiatives provide public sector leaders with tools for increased individual, team and organizational effectiveness. Lawrence also serves as a senior advisor for Bendable, the Drucker Institute’s lifelong learning system that helps to foster resiliency by creating communities of lifelong learning. Previously, Lawrence spent more than 30 years as an educator, fulfilling roles ranging from first grade teacher to graduate school instructor to principal of a Hebrew high school and junior college. As the director of Main Line Writing & Educational Services (later La Jolla Literary Services), Lawrence assisted academics, entrepreneurs, professionals and students with their writing and editing needs. After graduating from the University of Pennsylvania with a B.A. in Religious Studies, he served a stint on the Philadelphia Eagles media relations staff before embarking on his career in education. Lawrence has done extensive volunteer work in support of educational, environmental and social justice causes including as an education advisory board member for BizWrold, a Prairie Ambassador for the American Prairie Reserve, and a tutor-mentor for the Mayor’s Commission on Literacy in Philadelphia.

Jamie Jones

Design Director

Jamie Jones

Design Director

Jamie leads our strategy and process design work across multiple programs. In her unique role she translates client needs into Drucker-based questions—and converts those questions into collaborative exercises that elevate the effectiveness of leaders in the private, public and social sectors. Jamie also brings our Company Rankings to life for senior executives and their teams through our corporate consulting services and is instrumental in shaping the curricular strategies of our Spring Cleaning and Harbor Freight Leadership Lab programs. Jamie joined the Institute in 2009 with a deep background in management, having worked her way up to VP of Operations in her family’s industrial filtration business. In that role, she doubled the company’s revenue and eventually negotiated the sale of the business, staying on as part of the team to manage the integration of the two companies’ systems, procedures and cultures. She holds bachelor’s degrees in both Environmental Studies and Geology from the University of California at Santa Barbara and an MBA in sustainable management from Presidio Graduate School in San Francisco. In addition to doing her best to make the world a more joyous and well-managed place, Jamie is an avid backpacker in the Sierra Nevada mountains.

Lori Kiesling

Office Coordinator

Lori Kiesling

Office Coordinator

Lori supports the daily needs of the Drucker Institute team, coordinates office and administrative processes and manages Un/Workshops logistics. She earned her B.A. in English from Clemson University, and brings to the Institute more than a decade of exceptional client service work for Hyatt Vacation Marketing and the University of La Verne’s Office of Career Services. Lori is a lifelong music lover, adventurer and traveler, often found writing lyrics and enjoying the great outdoors.

Bridget Lawlor

Archivist

Bridget Lawlor

Archivist

Bridget leads the maintenance, cataloging and growth of the Drucker Archives. She received her Ph.D. in history and her M.A. in archival studies and history from Claremont Graduate University. She is a recipient of CGU’s Ida Lloyd Crotty fellowship, which supports an outstanding woman scholar in the arts or humanities. Bridget previously served as an intern with the A.K. Smiley Public Library where she worked with accessioned collections for Abraham Lincoln and the Civil War era. Her responsibilities at the Smiley Library included cataloging a newly donated Abraham Lincoln collection. Bridget earned her undergraduate degree from California State University, San Bernardino in modern European history where she conducted primary research on international laws prohibiting Holocaust denial.

Kelly Tang

Senior Director of Research

Kelly Tang

Senior Director of Research

Kelly leads research and development for the Drucker Institute’s company ranking system.

She has a rich background in ESG, sustainability investing and asset management. Prior to joining the Drucker Institute, Kelly worked at S&P Global in their indices division—where she designed the S&P/Drucker Institute Corporate Effectiveness Index. She has written for The Wall Street Journal, Harvard Law School Forum on Corporate Governance and Financial Regulation and The Journal of Alternative Investments.

Kelly holds an MBA from Harvard Business School and a bachelor’s degree from Stanford University. She lives in New York City.

Fred Teague

Lifelong Learning Manager

Fred Teague

Lifelong Learning Manager

Fred helps to lead local initiatives in South Bend in support of the Drucker Institute’s lifelong learning platform, Bendable.

He joined the Drucker Institute in 2018 as a community stakeholder for Bendable while working as a consultant at the University of Notre Dame. Fred is a lifelong learner with a wealth of real-life experience that helps him connect with people from all walks of life.

Fred earned a degree in Business from Ivy Tech Community College, graduating Cum Laude. He holds certificates in Executive Management from the University of Notre Dame, and in Project Management from Louisiana State University. He is a member of the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society, as well as the Kappa Beta Delta International Honor Society for ACBSP Accredited Business Programs.

Fred is currently pursuing a Project Management Professional certification, working on a short documentary film about his life, and serving as a motivational speaker. He loves to play chess, and is passionate about writing lyrics that both inspire and inform.

Phalana Tiller

Director of Learning

Phalana Tiller

Director of Learning

Phalana leads the newly founded Harbor Freight Leadership Lab, a program established in partnership with Harbor Freight Tools for Schools that aims to boost skilled trades education by developing effective leaders. Phalana also drives learning throughout all Drucker Institute programs by producing content for our online courses for managers and training programs for rising public sector leaders, as well as the digital learning modules for our nonprofit performance recognition program. Her portfolio includes executing our social media strategy and serving as curriculum specialist and director of our youth-centered Drucker for English Language Learners program.

Phalana joined the Drucker Institute in 2010 with a rich background in teaching and curriculum design, nonprofit program management and the performing arts. She has lobbied for public welfare reform in Washington, D.C., taught youth and adults in Virginia, New York and California, and performed in film, theater, commercial and television productions globally.

Phalana holds a B.A. in history and M.A. in teaching from the University of Virginia. She serves on the Executive Committee of Claremont Change, a grassroots organization aimed at addressing issues of racial justice and equity in Claremont, California. Phalana also competes and teaches with Claremont Racewalking, and has recently taken on the challenge of studying the Japanese language.

Rick Wartzman

Head of the KH Moon Center for a Functioning Society

Rick Wartzman

Head of the KH Moon Center for a Functioning Society

Rick founded and leads the KH Moon Center for a Functioning Society, and previously served as Executive Director of the Drucker Institute from its founding in 2007 until early 2016. As a regular contributor to Fast Company, his commentary was recognized by the Society for Advancing Business Editing and Writing with its Best in Business award for 2018. He has also written about management and leadership for Fortune, Time, Forbes and Businessweek. His latest book, The End of Loyalty: The Rise and Fall of Good Jobs in America was published by PublicAffairs in 2017. It was a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize in current interest and was named one of the best books of the year by strategy+business. A collection of his columns, What Would Drucker Do Now?, was published by McGraw-Hill in 2011. He’s also the editor of The Drucker Lectures: Essential Lessons on Management, Society, and Economy (McGraw-Hill, 2010) and Drucker: A Life in Pictures (McGraw-Hill, 2013). Before joining the Institute, Rick worked for two decades in newspapers. He began his career at The Wall Street Journal, where he served in a variety of positions, including White House correspondent and founding editor of the paper’s weekly California section. He joined the Los Angeles Times in 2002 as business editor and, in that role, helped shape “The Wal-Mart Effect,” which won the 2004 Pulitzer Prize for National Reporting. Rick later became editor of the newspaper’s Sunday magazine, West. Rick’s book, Obscene in the Extreme: The Burning and Banning of John Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath, was published by PublicAffairs in 2008. It was one of the Los Angeles Times’s 25 favorite nonfiction books of the year, as well as a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize in history and a PEN USA Literary Award. Rick is the co-author, with Mark Arax, of the best-seller The King of California: J.G. Boswell and the Making of a Secret American Empire, which was selected as one of the 10 best books of 2003 by the San Francisco Chronicle and one of the 10 best nonfiction books of the year by the Los Angeles Times. It also won, among other honors, a California Book Award and the William Saroyan International Prize for Writing. Rick serves on the boards of the employee benefit company California Harvesters Inc., the California Institute of Advanced Management and the progressive publication Capital & Main. For two years, Rick was an Irvine Senior Fellow at the New America Foundation, a nonpartisan public policy think tank.

Sarah Zaner

Senior Director of Lifelong Learning

Sarah Zaner

Senior Director of Lifelong Learning

Sarah is Senior Director of the KH Moon Center for a Functioning Society and head of product for the Drucker Institute’s lifelong learning initiative, Bendable.

Prior to joining the Drucker Institute, she was Senior Portfolio Director at IDEO, where she brought more than 20 years of experience in the Ed Tech and Learning Sciences fields to human-centered design for learning, education and the future of work.

Previously, Sarah was Director of Digital Learning Solutions at SRI International where she led the development of effective technology-based curricular systems, assessments and learning tools. Sarah was also a Senior Producer at Scholastic Inc. where she managed the development of READ 180, an award-winning intervention product for struggling readers.

Sarah holds a masters degree from Columbia University’s Teachers College and a bachelor’s degree from Wesleyan University. She lives the East Bay where her lifelong-learning pursuits include strengthening her layperson’s understanding of Quantum Mechanics and the search for the grand unifying theory.