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Get to Know Our Judges

Chris Bates

Chris Bates | Director of Employer Relations | Long Island University

Chris Bates is an experienced board member with a demonstrated history of working in the higher education industry. He is skilled in Equity Research, Options, Securities, ETFs, Equity Trading, and Compliance. As a member of the New York Stock Exchange, Chris served on the NYSE Hearing Panel and numerous committees, including Audit Trail, Systems Development, Continuing Education and Testing, Stock Allocation, and Floor Governor Selection. Chris has held several NYSE positions, including two terms as the Floor Official, enforcing NYSE rules, and adjudicating differences between floor brokers. As an NYSE educator, Chris traveled throughout the United States educating brokerage firms on the role of the specialist system.

At Long Island University, Chris has held numerous positions, including the College of Management Alumni Advisory Board, Adjunct Professor of Finance, and the Director of Employer Relations. As the Director of Employer Relations, Chris engages with alumni and talent acquisition specialists in Fortune 500 and mid-size companies to create internships and job opportunities for LIU students. By cultivating relationships with mid-level and upper management decision-makers, Chris leverages corporate and LIU resources to develop internal student referrals. Chris’ student focus and recruitment style have increased both the recruitment efforts and success of LIU’s Dean Scholars and Entrepreneur Fellows programs.

Chris holds a master’s of science in criminal justice from Long Island University and is currently pursuing his Doctor of Education degree at Northeastern University.


Robin Siekerman

Robin Siekerman | VP Marketing and Customer Solutions | The Shippers Group

Robin Siekerman is Vice President of Marketing and Customer Solution with primary responsibilities for strategic marketing initiatives as well as branding and public relations. With over 20 years of logistics sales and marketing experience, Robin’s career spans several industry verticals. She uses her high energy drive and creativity to develop successful supply chain programs, creates qualified leads, and generate new sales. She is skilled at transforming plans into workable programs, analysis, and financial solutions and provides leadership and vision to further business development and enhance marketing initiatives.

Before joining The Shippers Group, Robin has worked throughout her career in logistics sales and marketing. Notable is her 12 years as VP of Business Development for Palisades Logistics. She also worked at Americold Logistics as Director of Marketing and Sales, Kimberly-Clark Corporation, as Logistics Specialist and DSC Logistics in Sales and Marketing. Robin holds a bachelor’s in business administration from the University of Tennessee.


Pete Hautem

Pete Hautem | President | Hautem Media Inc.

Pete Hautem has worked in marketing and sales for close to 50 years. Pete has held several senior-level positions for corporations, such as Starcraft (Southern Regional Sales Manager), Outdoor Advertising (Executive Vice President of Associates of The Bell Company), and Paragon Printing (Senior Vice President of Sales). Pete created Hautem Media Inc. to fill a market void in the out-of-home sales and marketing space.  As an entrepreneur and motivational speaker, Pete assists colleges and universities in creating and expanding entrepreneurial programs. One of Pete’s greatest joys is helping future business leaders in their endeavors to bring their products to market.


Josh McWorter

Josh McWhorter | Founder & CEO | McWhorter Capital Partners

Josh McWhorter, Founder, and CEO of McWhorter Capital Partners, has emerged as a leader in the investment industry and built a business largely on client referrals. Before founding MCP, Josh founded Black Oak Asset Management, a financial advising firm focused primarily on individuals nearing or in retirement, and the 401(k) Market. Black Oak Asset stretched beyond the main location in Georgia to serve clients in 12 states. After the sale of Black Oak Asset, Josh transitioned into private real estate. In 2013 McWhorter Capital Partners was created with the mindset of “Purpose Driven Investments.” MCP now holds and manages a private equity fund, multiple real estate funds and has owned and managed almost a dozen businesses, including a restaurant franchise, an HVAC company, an accounting firm, an advertising and marketing agency, and several property management groups.

In August of 2014, McWhorter Capital Partners Charitable Foundation was created. Through the Foundation, Josh was able to gift $100k from the firm to three local non-profit organizations that serve the Cartersville Community.

Josh has made several appearances in various media outlets on subjects ranging from the Federal Reserve to speaking engagements on charitable giving and his personal testimony. Besides his media appearances and speaking engagements, Josh is actively involved in the Cartersville community at church and on the sports field.

Josh holds a B.A. From Furman University and certificate of completion of the Executive Program for Financial Planning with Distinction from University of Georgia’s Terry College of Business.


Alan Johnson

Alan Johnson | Director of Transportation | Nourison Industries

Alan Johnson is the Director of Transportation at Nourson Industries, responsible for guiding domestic transportation strategies. Alan has over 30 years of logistics and supply chain management experience. Before joining Nourison Industries, Alan was an independent consultant for KPMG International. His main focus was on logistics and supply chain management projects that aimed to provide efficiencies within the organization.  Alan spent 13 years with Home Depot, where he served as Regional Transportation Operations Manager, and managed the Customs and Trade Partnership Against Terrorism Program (CTPAT).

Alan holds a bachelor’s degree in Industrial Management from Auburn University and a master’s in Logistics and Supply Chain Management from Georgia College and State University.