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Regional Director, KU-KSBDC
Will has been a resident of Lawrence, Kansas since 1986. He came to Lawrence as an undergraduate at KU where he studied Philosophy and Russian. He received his B.A. in 1993, and earned his KU MBA in 2001.
He brings to this position a variety of professional and management experience from companies both large and small. He spent seventeen years at E and E Display Group, beginning in 1987 and culminating with a stint as Production Manager. He has also served as a leader in Fortune 50 companies--General Motors and Target.
He is passionate about working with small businesses to help them succeed in our community and surrounding communities. He is eager to promote entrepreneurship in his role as Director of the KU-KSBDC.
Director, Cybersecurity Center for Small Business
Brian S. Dennis' personality and formal education have given him the ability to develop a highly effective level of communication with clients, as well as a good perception for market trends and changes. Brian received a BA in English and Marketing from Nicholls State University in Thibodaux, Louisiana. He received a Master’s degree in Emergency Management and Homeland Security with an applied focus on Cybersecurity from Arizona State University. Brian has been an Associate Business Continuity Professional (ABCP) since Disaster Recovery Institute International awarded him the certification in 2014.
His experience in bringing businesses through the stages of planning for disaster and executing continuity plans started on the front lines of a crisis during Hurricane Katrina in 2005. He was part of a team that rebuilt a company in New Orleans after losing almost every physical location and 50% of its staff. From there Brian has brought Business Continuity as a service to the state of Kansas. Currently Brian is the director of the Cybersecurity Center for Small Business at the University of Kansas. The awareness of small business' lack of planning on both the physical and cyber sides of security is growing among business owners. His work within the KSBDC network includes the creation of a center specifically tasked with increasing small businesses ability to respond to cyber and physical threats. Brian is working to build a safer Kansas, with small businesses that are prepared to weather any type of financial storm.
Kristina Mease is a Business Consultant for the KU Small Business Development Center. A Kansas native, Kristina is originally from Emporia and came to Lawrence for her undergraduate degree. She fell in love with the small town feel and sense of community that resides in Lawrence.
In 2014 she graduated with her undergraduate degree in Art History. Shortly after graduation, Kristina worked in the marketing field for a small Art Company in London. She then returned to Kansas City and found a job working as a Financial Aid Advisor in 2014. Kristina has experience helping individuals sift through complicated information to find insights and drive informed decisions. In addition to her role as an advisor, she also managed a team of student workers for the departments.
After a few years in the workforce, Kristina returned for her MBA at The University of Kansas and graduated in 2017. During her time in the MBA program, she served as a student consultant for a number of local businesses.
Kristina loves everything marketing and served a stint at an advertising agency. Kristina is very excited to help small businesses grow and work with local entrepreneurs.
Taylor is a student intern at the Kansas SBDC. As a Lawrence native, Taylor understands the impact that small businesses have on a community. Taylor is an undergraduate student at the University of Kansas studying marketing with an expected graduation date of December 2018. She is eager to expand her business knowledge and help local entrepreneurs.
The Kansas Small Business Development Center (KSBDC) is partially funded by the U.S. Small Business Administration under Cooperative Agreement No. 3-603001-2-0017-8. The support given by the U.S. Small Business Administration through such funding does not constitute and expressed or implied endorsement of the co-sponsors' or participants' opinions, products or services. SBA funded programs are extended to the public on a nondiscriminatory basis. A partnership program with the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) and the Kansas Department of Commerce and Housing (KDOCH).