MBA Research
Serving high school and post-secondary educators and administrators
Not-for-profit, research-based support for all Business Administration educators: entrepreneurship, finance, hospitality, management/administration, and marketing.


About MBA Research - Other Articles

Lisa Berkey is VP of Strategic Communications. This role includes leadership of marketing and communications for the organization, as well as oversight of the High School of Business program.

Berkey holds an MBA with dual concentrations in marketing and project management, as well as a B.S. in marketing. Prior to joining MBA Research in 2006, she worked in brand management at Borden Foods, in sales at Kellogg’s, and as an adjunct marketing instructor at the University of Dayton. Outside of the office, Lisa enjoys traveling as often as possible, collecting 5k t-shirts, and hanging out with her husband and three children.

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Tammy Cyrus is the Director of Professional Development for MBA Research. She has been a part of the MBA Professional Development Team since 2014 and has presented at numerous state and national conferences. She was a previous Business Administration teacher in North Carolina.  She has received her Master of Arts in Business Education, National Board of Professional Teaching Standards certification and holds a certification in School Administration, as well as industry recognized certifications in Adobe and Microsoft Office.  Her professional experiences have included teaching at the post-secondary level, working on curriculum development at the state level, serving in leadership roles at the district and school levels, and serving as an adviser for FBLA. She is currently responsible for the PD Team, Teacher Advisory Network, Conclave, Leadership forum and the ongoing development of professional development for teachers, districts, and state departments from around the country.

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Chris Burke joined the team in 1989 as a graphic designer.  Like Lee Ventling, Chris has his hands in most everything that goes to print.  He’s also works with design on the new online MBA Learning Center.  Chris is a graduate of Columbus College of Art and Design.  When he isn’t working, Chris is interested in listening to and playing music (drums) or spending time doing concerts, movies, camping, and hiking.  

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Mary joined the team in 1979 when we had typewriters and one new “magic machine,” our first typewriter with memory.  She worked as a part-time typist and proofreader while working on her college degree.  As Production Manager, Mary is responsible for all of the processes of getting a product to print, including final sign-off on all print masters.  More recently, she has assumed a major role in our online publishing via the MBA Learning Center. 

Mary may be the only graduate of The Ohio State University who can’t name at least ten years of OSU starting quarterbacks.  (On the other hand, she’s one of the few in the world who can spot a production problem from across the room – with or without her glasses.)  When she’s not locked in her office, she enjoys being in nature, listening to music, reading, spending time with family and friends, and teaching movement classes.

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Marsha joined us in 2002 when she assumed the challenge of providing the absolute best customer service in the world.  Odds are, when you call or email,  Marsha’s the one who will find the answer to your questions or solution to your challenges.  She handles most order processing and you’ll also find her working our booth at trade show exhibits.  She’s a major behind-the-scenes leader at the annual MBA Conclave (and has been seen at the infamous Conclave Casino).  Recently, Marsha has accepted responsibility for the operations side of our online testing programs.

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Diane is Vice President of Instruction at Arapahoe Community College in Littleton, Colorado.  Her responsibilities include oversight of all instructional programming at the college including concurrent (dual) enrollment, workforce development, marketing and communications, eLearning and community outreach.   

Diane’s education journey began as a high school marketing student.  She was active in DECA and represented her chapter at the district, state, and national levels.  She taught Marketing Education at the high school level for seven years before beginning her career as an administrator.  She has served in several administrative roles including state administration for marketing education programs and as an instructional dean.  

Diane received her PhD in Education and Human Resource Studies with a specialization in Community College Leadership from Colorado State University.  Her interest in the MBA Research and Curriculum Center Board stems from her life-long commitment to student success in Business and Marketing programs at the secondary and postsecondary levels and in giving back to a program that made a huge difference in her life. 

Phil is, in his words, the Technology Ombudsman and Computer Whisperer for our organization.  As such, he provides the human connection between all the boxes with blinking lights in our office and our staff teams.  On good days, he keeps all those blinking lights blinking harmoniously.   To do so, he’s been known to curse silently at the heavens when things go wrong in his attempts to maintain, upgrade, and cajole the organization’s various computers and peripherals. Phil is instrumental in the design and operation of all things technical, including our various web sites, the online MBA Learning Center, and the many different data bases that support our programs and services.

We asked Phil to share a bit about his professional background.  In his words:  I started working with computers when I was 14 years old.  No big deal you say, but when I was 14 dinosaurs roamed the earth and gas was 25 cents a gallon.  I tried to get a formal education in personal computers but such a thing didn't exist and rather then getting the electrical engineering degree that all my other peers went after I dropped out and started learning everything I could about PCs on my own. Throughout the years I've done a little bit of everything where computers are concerned.

And, finally, when he’s not focused on our machines, Phil spends his free time spoiling his three-year-old grandson, Bennett.  Bennett, he claims, happens to be the cutest, most lovable 3 year old you've ever seen.  (This is a real accomplishment given that we have other staff with other kids!)   When he’s not spending time with Bennett, he’s likely online shopping for toys for 3 year olds.  

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In his role as interim CEO, Rick performs all of the responsibilities of the President/CEO position. He works with the Board of Directors to implement the company strategic plan and represents the company with all external partners. He will be responsible for all internal operations including managing the program of work in conjunction with senior staff. He most recently served as Executive Vice President. Prior to joining MBA Research, his career spanned 36 plus years in career and technical education. He spent the last 25 years of his career with the Ohio Department of Education where he served as a consultant for Marketing Education before moving into the position of Assistant Director for Business, Marketing and Information Technology. He finished his career as Associate CTE State Director. While at the Ohio Department of Education, Rick was State Advisor for Ohio DECA and Business Professionals of America. He served on the Board of Directors for MBA Research, DECA and BPA. He is an Honorary Life Member of DECA and was inducted into the National Hall of Fame for BPA. He also received a Lifetime Achievement Award from Ohio Association of Career Technical Education. Rick retired from the Ohio Department of Education in June, 2011. Rick earned both his Bachelor’s degree in Marketing Education and Master’s degree in Vocational Education from the Ohio State University. 

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As Vice President of Product Development for MBA Research, April J. Miller provides guidance and support to educators involved in the development, implementation, and evaluation of standards-based curriculum. She oversees the creation of a broad range of instructional materials and products, including LAP modules, curriculum guides, technical skill assessments, programs of study, and the online Learning Center. April represents MBA Research at state- and local-level workshops and seminars and has had multiple articles published in Techniques magazine.

April, who joined MBA Research in 2006, served as senior curriculum research associate prior to assuming her current role as a vice president with the organization. A graduate of Wittenberg University (OH), April is a former high school teacher and corporate trainer in the finance industry. She lives in Galloway, Ohio, with her husband Michael, daughters Maria and Alexandra, and dogs Cutie Pie and Mr. Beefy. In her spare time, April enjoys reading, crafts, and spending time with her family.

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