The Team

   Bob Sahlman

      

   John Freyhof

   Jay Carpenter     

      

   Hank Firey

   Tim O'Connell

   Lynn Walter

   Jeff Sands  

   Lisa Loomis

   June Cook

         

We use a team approach to meet your corporate acquisition needs. Our team of professionals have over 100 years of combined experiences in banking, commercial real estate, manufacturing, distribution, technology hardware and software development and private mergers and acquisitions.

 

The Mad River Associates team is comprised of experienced and successful professionals who average more than 30 years of in-depth experience. Our successful results are largely due to the synergies we capture having such high quality professionals working together on our clients' behalf.

Bob Sahlman
Founder

Managing Partner

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John Freyhof
Partner

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Jay Carpenter
Partner
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Hank Firey
Partner

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301-758-1710

 

 

 

 

Tim O'Connell

Partner

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Lynn Walter

Partner

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Jeff Sands

Partner

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Lisa Loomis

Partner

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June Cook

Research Manager

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Bob Sahlman is President and Founder of Mad River Associates.   Prior to 1998, Mr. Sahlman managed a team of seventeen professionals for Coldstream Real Estate Advisors, a commercial real estate brokerage firm in Bedford, New Hampshire. After retiring from that business in 1993, he went on to manage real estate investment entities in New England. After successfully selling the Sahlman family's rural telephone business, Topsham Telephone Company in 1998, Mr. Sahlman joined a thirty-year old main street brokerage firm called Country Business. The primary objective of joining Country Business was to find a manufacturing investment opportunity for the Sahlman family interests. After locating a suitable opportunity, Mr. Sahlman left Country Business in late 1998 to start Mad River Associates.   He has a B. S. in finance from George Washington University with three years of additional graduate studies in real estate and urban development at American University.

John Freyhof has over fifteen years of direct investment and advisory experience and joined Mad River Associates as a Managing Director in June 2003. Prior to joining Mad River Associates, Mr. Freyhof co-founded TRF Urban Growth Partners, a $50 million fund specializing in socially responsible investments in middle-market manufacturing and service businesses.   Mr. Freyhof has been involved in assisting companies with fundraising, business plan development, strategic marketing and new product development as an advisor, board member and investor. From 1997 - 2003, Mr. Freyhof was responsible for originating and managing investments in a portfolio of fifteen technology, manufacturing, software and service companies as a Managing Director at PNC Capital Markets and TRF Urban Growth Partners. From 1987 - 1997, he served as an advisor to nearly 300 early stage technology companies who subsequently went on to raise over $500 million while serving as Director of Venture Development at a Carnegie Mellon University spin off called the Enterprise Corporation of Pittsburgh. Mr. Freyhof holds a BS in accounting, cum laude, from Syracuse University and an MBA from the Graduate School of Business at the University of Pittsburgh. He is also a registered investment representative.  Mr. Freyhof manages the Mad River Associates Philadelphia office.

Jay started his career working for a computer engineering company based in Sydney, Australia, called Platypus Technologies.  After working as a manufacturing engineer and sales engineer for Platypus he left to develop a new product line for Gordon Cross Inc.  Jay developed relationships with manufacturing facilities in southern China, as well as established distribution channels throughout North America.  Jay also has extensive experience in the construction industry having worked as a construction project manager and structural engineer earlier in his career. He joined MRA’s Waitsfield office in 2009, to help grow the business and develop systems to improve the companies efficiency.  Jay has an MBA degree from Babson College, and a B.S. Mechanical Engineering, from The University of Vermont.

 

Hank joined Mad River Associates (MRA) in 2010, bringing a diverse corporate  background in telecommunications, software, finance, and M&A. He began in software development, then sales and sales management. Recruited to a public software company as Sr. VP, he was a key member of the team to take the company private and subsequently sell to a PE firm. Then joining a Fortune-1000 technology company as VP and GM, he participated in an LBO, the acquisition of another publicly-held company, and acquired several private medical and financial software companies.      Then Hank left the corporate world to acquire a small technology integration company in a divestiture. When the business was sold, he moved from board member of a troubled ERP software company to CEO. The company migrated into e-commerce, grew dramatically, and was merged into a PE-led roll-up for a planned IPO. Hank then became CEO of a PE-backed company serving softgoods manufacturers and retailers. In the years immediately prior to MRA, Hank was CEO of two venture-backed telecommunications software companies, one selling Voice over IP products to worldwide "next-generation" carriers, the other selling network capacity planning software to the top 50 telecom service providers. Hank currently sits on the board of two technology companies and a winery.

Tim O'Connell joins Mad River Associates with over 30 years of entrepreneurial experience.  Having owned and operated businesses within such diverse fields as health and fitness, commodity trading, and equipment financing, Tim knows the "ins and outs" of how businesses operate.  His experience has taught him how to find workable solutions to numerous business problems.  Tim graduated from the University of Vermont in 1976 with a B.S. in business.  A year playing pro hockey for the San Diego Mariners in the W.H.A. followed.  Tim then worked in the banking business for four years before owning his first business in 1981, Tim and his wife of 28 years, Katrina spend most of their time in the Mad River Valley where they enjoy skiing, hiking, and all Vermont has to offer.  The months of July and August are spent in their Rhode Island home on Narragansett Bay where they enjoy sailing.

 

Dr. Lynn Walter’s background includes careers in both academia and high-technology sales.  After finishing her B.S. in Engineering Management, Lynn spent over a decade selling computers into high technology accounts.  She then moved on to complete an M.B.A. in Finance from U.C.L.A. and a Doctorate in Business Administration with a concentration in Strategic Management at Boston University.  Lynn has taught Strategic Management and Entrepreneurship classes to both undergraduate and graduate students at a variety of schools in the Boston area and she currently holds a tenured faculty position at Western New England University.  Her work at Mad River Associates is a clear extension of her research and teaching in academia.

 

 

Jeff Sands grew up in a family manufacturing business and returned as an adult to help grow, fix, grow again and eventually sell that business.   Most recently Jeff worked as an investor/operator in private equity and before that as an operational, turnaround and financial restructuring specialist – which involved many acquisitions, divestitures and fund raisings.   Jeff has run, managed or transitioned businesses ranging from; manufacturing, distribution, transportation, electronics, aerospace/defense, auto, medical, retail, food, machining, publishing, IT services, art and textiles.   Jeff received his BA in Economics from Hobart College and his MBA with honors from Alaska Pacific University.   Jeff serves on the Board of several entrepreneurial businesses.   He married his college sweetheart and they enjoy their free time skiing, biking and shuttling their 3 kids around to sporting events. 

Lisa Loomis joins Mad River Associates with three decades of marketing, sales, public relations, and journalism experience.

Lisa is a graduate of Albion College in Albion, Michigan where she earned a degree in international politics and languages (French, German, Spanish, Russian).

She has owned a gym and works in the fitness industry as a fitness instructor and personal trainer and is currently co-owner of The Valley Reporter, a weekly newspaper serving central Vermont.

She is the founder of Mad River Valley Television, a public access station, where she serves as President of the Board of Directors. She is currently a member of the Mad River Valley Chamber of Commerce Board and sits on the board of the Mad River Valley Economic and Community Development Board.

 

June Cook serves as the Marketing and Database Manager of Mad River Associates. She has over 15 years of experience in Marketing and Market Research within multiple industries, including consumer products, food & beverage, retail stores, restaurants, health care and insurance.

June graduated Magna Cum Laude from Temple University with a degree in Business Administration. She lives in Vermont with her two daughters and spends free time skiing and being a soccer mom.