Meet Our Team
Micah T. Smith co-founded Roland Equity Partners. Roland’s limited partners and institutional investors form a diverse group of entrepreneurs, investors, and operators, who bring decades of experience to the firm. The members of this group also serve as advisors, directors and board members in all of Roland Equity’s investments.
Micah T. Smith
Over the years, Micah has played many roles as an operating executive, consultant, and entrepreneur to Roland Equity Partners. His experience as an operator spans international geographies and organizations ranging from billion-dollar corporations to boot-strapped start-ups. Before founding Roland Equity, Smith has spent several years as an Executive Vice President for Sansegal China – a medium-size multi-national manufacturing organization based in Southern China. He was responsible for China office operations, customer acquisition and retention, and new product development.
He also held the position of a consultant and senior buyer for billion-dollar corporations such as Intel and Polaroid. As a senior buyer, Micah was responsible for negotiating contracts with Tier-1 consumer electronics suppliers for a total annual spend of over $100 million.
Micah is married and blessed with four children and resides in St. Petersburg, Florida. He speaks three languages and holds an MBA from the University of Michigan, Ross School of Business. He also has a B.S. in International Business from Brigham Young University in Hawaii. He graduated Magna Cum Laude and received an award from the International Chinese Studies Fellowship.
These investors brings in financial advantage and expertise for Roland Equity Partners.
Peterson Partners (http://www.petersonpartners.com), based in Salt Lake City, Utah, is one of the Intermountain West’s most successful private equity firms, specializing in small to mid-sized companies. Peterson Partners has a track record of successful investments including JetBlue, Vivint, Energy Solutions, 3form, Access CIG, and Diamond Rental. Founded in 1995, Peterson Partners has managed over $500 million in committed capital through eight funds.
Trilogy Equity Partners is a closely-held investment firm based in Bellevue, Washington. Their roots include the formation and leadership of some of the largest mobile operators in the United States as well as other global technology and wireless companies. We apply a team-oriented approach, deep operational expertise and a flexible capital structure to help entrepreneurs build great companies.
Coley Andrews is a founding partner of Pacific Lake Partners. Since co-founding Pacific Lake, he has invested in over 30 search funds. Currently, he acts as a Director of Out of Home America and Data Fusion. He is also a board visitor at Vector Disease Control, Alpha Credit, FastSpring, Scottish American, Arizona College, and Raptor Technologies. Coley holds an MBA from Stanford’s Graduate School of Business and a B.A. degree from Dartmouth College.
Jim Southern is a founding partner of Pacific Lake Partners. His personal portfolio includes more than 40 search funds. During the early stages of his career, he was a beneficiary of search fund investors
His first search resulted in the acquisition of Uniform Printing, a $43 million company specializing in printing of specialty insurance documents, where he served as the CEO and the chairman for ten years. Southern currently serves on many boards of search fund operating companies. He holds an MBA from the Harvard Business School.
Dr. Steven C. Wheelwright, the Edsel Bryant Ford Professor of Business Administration, Emeritus at Harvard Business School, became the ninth president of Brigham Young University-Hawaii on June 23, 2007.
He was called by president Gordon B. Hinckley to preside over the Brigham Young University in Hawaii. The university gave him the charge to work on continuous improvement of the quality of the education delivered. President Wheelwright reports to the Commissioner of the Church Educational System, Paul V. Johnson, and the CES Board of Trustees, which includes the First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
He is a former senior associate dean of the Harvard Business School's MBA program, a Baker Foundation professor and senior associate dean and director of Harvard Business School's publication activities. His research and experience have given him a world-recognized expertise in solving complex managerial problems and foreseeing future business trends.
"Strategic Management of Technology and Innovation", 4th ed.; "Operations, Strategy, and Technology - Pursuing the Competitive Edge"; and "Dynamic Manufacturing: Creating the Learning Organization" are few of his books.
After his retirement, he and his wife, Margaret, presided over the London, England Mission of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Later they served as service missionaries at BYU-Idaho. Dr. Wheelright and his wife Margaret are parents of five children and 19 grandchildren.
Craig Burr is a founder of Burr, Egan, Deleage & Co., a private investment firm. He was a partner at TA Associates. He has been a member of the board of directors of the New England Venture Capital Association. He serves on the directorial board for several private companies.
Most of his career is based around venture capital activities. He has backed many leading companies in a variety of different industries. Burr received his B.A. cum Laude, from Harvard College and his MBA from Harvard Business School.
General partner at Matland Capital, Matthew Burr handles a hedge fund portfolio and is also active in making private investments.
He worked at Cambridge Associates, where he was a hedge fund analyst and has also assisted universities, foundations, and high net worth families with asset allocation, investment manager selection, and market research.
Matthew received his B.A. Cum Laude from Harvard University, and has a Master's Degree in Environmental Management from Duke University.
Tom Cassutt is the Managing Partner of TD Investment Company, which has made investments in more than eighty private companies. He is also the CFO of American Security Products, a leading manufacturer of high-security safes. He currently sits on the board of American Security Products, Columbia Sanitary Products, Scottish American Insurance Services, and Positive Coaching Alliance.
He served as the Controller of Bristol Corporation, from 1978-1984. the parent company for ten other manufacturing companies. Later, he was the co-resident of Nelson Nameplate Company from 1984 to 2011 , a manufacturer of membrane switches and product identification based in Los Angeles, California.
He received his Bachelor's degree in Physics from the University of California, Irvine where he was a Phi Beta Kappa graduate. He also has an MBA from Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business. At Stanford, he was an Arjay Miller Scholar and the recipient of the Alexander A. Robichek Award for Outstanding Achievement in Finance.
Dave Lazier is Managing Partner of TD Investment Company. TD makes private equity investments, in search funds and also serves as President of American Security Products. It's a leading manufacturer of high-security safes.
He served as Controller, Vice President of Sales and Co-President of Nelson Nameplate Company, a manufacturer of durable graphics and membrane switches based in Los Angeles, California.Before joining Nelson, he worked as an engineer with IBM Corporation from 1982 to 1984.Also, as a board member for Glendale Memorial Hospital Foundation, The San Gabriel Valley Habitat for Humanity and St. Mark’s Episcopal Church.
Dave received his Bachelor’s Degree in Industrial Engineering from Northwestern University. He is currently on the board of Nelson-Miller, American Security Products, Columbia Sanitary Products, CALO and Gogotech.
Bob Dahl is currently a private investor, focusing on the healthcare industry. He is a director of several private companies and also a member of the Board of Trustees of the Cancer Research Institute.
Earlier, he was the co-founder and Chief Operating Officer of Arrowhawk Capital Partners, an investment company and the Vice President of Strategic Business Development and Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors of Golden Pond Healthcare, Inc. He served as co-head of healthcare investment banking in North America at Credit Suisse First Boston.
Later he served as the head of Global Healthcare for the Carlyle Group( from April 1999 until June 2006), a leading private equity firm, where he was responsible for the firm's investments in the healthcare field.
Bob received a Bachelor's Degree from Middlebury College and an MBA with high distinction from the Harvard Business School.
Kent Weaver is the Chairman and CEO of Progressive Home Care, a Northern California-based health care company. He currently serves on the board at VRI, Discovery Outsourcing, Integra, Onesource Water, Change Academy Lake of the Ozarks and Healthwyse.
Before, he held executive position in marketing and product management for a VC-backed marketing software startup, served as regional CFO and business analyst in Pepsico's Pizza Hut Division, and as a management consultant at Ernst & Young.
He received his Bachelor's Degree in Finance from the University of Southern California and MBA from the University of California, Los Angeles.
Tim Ludwig is a private investor with a focus on search funds and lower-middle market service businesses. He is an active advisor and board member to several private companies.
He worked for Pacific Scene, a privately-held, diversified real estate company where he served on the board and was President of the Commercial Property division.
His experience includes roles in consulting with Arthur Andersen and a middle-market manufacturing company, being founder of two online publishing companies, and positions in business development with Dell Computer and a venture-backed start-up.
Tim graduated from The College of Wooster and a received his MBA from The Ross School at the University of Michigan.
James K. Johnson Jr. currently serves on the board of several private media companies and is active in search investments.
In 1996, he co-founded along with Matt Diamond, Alloy, Inc. a youth-focused media and marketing company. In 1999 they built it to become one of the most important youth-focused media and marketing companies of the past two decades.In November 2010, he joined forces with Zelnick Media to complete a go- private transaction of Alloy. By 2013 Alloy’s key operating divisions were acquired strategic or financial investors, including the 2012 sale of Alloy Entertainment to Warner Bros.
He was a member of GE Company's Corporate Audit Staff and a graduate of its Financial Management Program. Later as Chief Operating Officer of Alloy, Inc., he led the merchandising business, which included the Alloy, dELiA's and CCS brands, and grew it to become one of the largest direct-to-consumer businesses to teens and young adults in the country. He was also instrumental during key expansions of Alloy’s media business, including the acquisition of Alloy Entertainment, which went on to create for Alloy defining youth culture hits “Gossip Girl,” “The Vampire Diaries,” and “Pretty Little Liars”. Johnson received his B.A. in History from Hamilton College.
Matthew C. Diamond held positions in the Finance and Operations departments at the GE Company, including two years at the company’s offices in Tokyo. He also serves on the board of Do Something, Inc. and, in 2009, the youth focused non-profit organization honored him with its Lifetime Achievement Award for the company’s considerable contributions. He has also supported youth education initiatives in New York City, dedicating his time to the Bronx Academy of Letters—awarded a rare A in both the Department of Education’s 2006-07 and 2007-08 progress reports—and as a member of the PENCIL program pairing business leaders with public schools.
Later, as CEO of Alloy, Inc., Diamond was instrumental in the establishment of the company’s multi-discipline marketing unit, Alloy Media + Marketing, and lead key expansions, including the acquisition of Alloy Entertainment (17 th Street Productions), the youth media behemoth behind pop culture phenomenon’s “Gossip Girl,” “The Vampire Diaries,” “Pretty Little Liars, among others, which got sold to Warner Bros. Television Group; Channel One, the award-winning premiere television news network for teens; and Alloy Education, a leader in student recruitment solutions for higher education. Until 2005, Alloy, Inc. included the youth merchandise brands Alloy, CCS and dEliA's. Under his leadership, these businesses grew to be among the largest direct marketers (e-commerce and catalog) to teens and young-adults in the U.S. and were divested via a public to public spin-off. In November 2010, Alloy, Inc. completed a go-private transaction by an investor group led by Zelnick Media.
Matthew graduated Phi Beta Kappa with a B.A. (1991) in International Studies at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He also received his MBA (1996 ) from the Harvard Graduate School of Business.
Bill Egan is founder and General Partner of Alta Communications and Marion Equity Partners, Massachusetts-based venture capital firms. He founded Alta's predecessor firm, Burr, Egan, Deleage & Co. in 1979, and has identified and backed several of America's leading growth companies in the information technology, life sciences, and communications industries. Before founding Burr, Egan, Deleage & Co., Bill was a Partner at TA Associates.
He is past President and Chairman of the National Venture Capital Association, a former trustee of Fairfield University and the University of Pennsylvania and a former member of the Board of Overseers of The Wharton School. He is a member of the Board of CRH PLC, and many companies. Bill is also a trustee of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum and the Duniry Foundation.
Bill began his career as a Manager of Venture Capital for New England Enterprise Capital Corporation. He received a degree in Economics from Fairfield University and an MBA from The Wharton School.
Gerald Risk is Vice-Chairman of Asurion, the world’s largest provider of consumer technology protection services. Asurion offers its services to over 200 million consumers globally in partnership with leading mobile carriers such as AT&T, China Mobile, NTT DoCoMo, KDDI, and Verizon and leading retailers such as Wal-Mart and Amazon. Risk first joined Asurion in 1999 as Chief Financial officer. He became President in 2009 and Vice-Chairman in 2013.
Also, he currently serves as the Board of Directors of Sunrun (provider of residential solar services), Carillon Assisted Living (provider of assisted living services in the Southeast), HealthCPA (provider of medical expense management services for consumers), and QMC Telecom (Latin American wireless telecom infrastructure provider)
Before joining Asurion,he worked as an investment banker with Goldman, Sachs & Co. in San Francisco, Hong Kong and New York.
Gerald is an active investor and mentor of entrepreneurial leaders in the for-profit and non-profit worlds. He holds an MBA from the Graduate School of Business at Stanford University. At Stanford, he was an Arjay Miller Scholar and served as a case writer in finance for Dr. Jack McDonald. He also holds a Bachelor's Degree in Commerce with Honors from Queen’s University in Canada where he was on the Dean’s List. He lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with his wife and two sons.
A. J. Wasserstein is the CEO of Onesource Water, LLC, a growing national bottleless water service company. He is the founder and CEO of ArchivesOne, the third largest records management company in the United States. He built ArchivesOne into a super-regional records management company employing 400 people before selling to Iron Mountain (NYSE: IRM) after 17 years of operation. He is on several mid-market Boards.
The U. S. Small Business Administration has recognized Wassestein as the Small Business Person of the Year in Connecticut. He also got featured in the book Leadership Secrets of the World’s Most Successful CEOs. He graduated from Colgate University and received his MBA from New York University.
Jose Stella is currently Co-CEO and Co-Founder of QMC Telecom International, LLC, a Latin American wireless infrastructure provider. Currently, he serves as a Director of Rocket Learning, LLC, Bomi Mexico and throughout the years has served in several other company boards.
He was the CEO and Co-founder of VIU Media until the sale of the company to Lamar Advertising (NASDAQ: LAMR) in 2006. He also worked at KPMG Peat Marwick in the middle-market Mergers & Acquisitions Advisory Group and for UBS and Chase Manhattan Bank.
Later, he served as Co-Founder and President of Quest Management Corporation, a private equity group formed to identify, get, and operate a company in Puerto Rico.
He along with his partner in 2004, received Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award for Puerto Rico. Stella graduated with high honors, with a B.A. in Economics, Finance and Investments from Babson College. Also, he graduated Cum Laude with an MBA from The University of Michigan.
Rafael Samoza is currently Co-CEO and Co-Founder of QMC Telecom International, LLC and sits on the Board of Directors of Alpha Credit in Mexico.
Before that he was the CEO and Co-founder of VIU Media until the sale of the company to Lamar Advertising (NASDAQ: LAMR) in 2006. At the time of the sale, VIU Media was Puerto Rico's largest owned outdoor advertising company.
Additionally, Rafael was the CEO and Co-founder of Quest Management Corporation, a private equity investment company formed to identify, get, and later operate a desirable growing concern in Puerto Rico. Somoza had worked at the Chase Manhattan Bank and at CS First Boston. Throughout the years he has also was in the development of several successful residential and tourism real estate projects, including the Rincon Beach Resort.
Along with his business partner, Rafael was the recipient of the 2004 E&Y Entrepreneur of the Year Award for Puerto Rico. He holds a B.A., Magna Cum Laude, in Economics and Political Science from Yale University and an MBA from Stanford's Graduate School of Business.