Daniel J. Yeomans MBA, CCIM
Daniel Yeomans has personally handled nearly 700 cases during the past 22 years as a court-appointed receiver, broker and advisor in voluntary workouts. Due to his length of tenure in the industry, Daniel has in-depth experience in handling distressed businesses and real estate in a number of different industries that sometimes are the result of dips in business cycles and downturns in the economy. For instance, he employed his experience as receiver on scores of condominium developments, mobile home communities, multifamily properties, and shopping centers due to the recent financial crisis and drop in property values. In 2012, a new round of assets included full and limited service hotels, marinas, and malls. Prior to the 2008 financial meltdown, Daniel served as court-appointed receiver for the former Detroit Cold Rolling steel mill in Gibraltar, Michigan and dozens of other industrial concerns. His experience extends into untangling fraudulent business operations to protect the interests of legitimate stakeholders. For instance, Daniel secured the cash and physical assets of 16 shell entities that made up the Cyberco Holdings scam perpetrated by Barton Watson in Grand Rapids, Michigan after the FBI raided the business in late 2004. Subsequently, Daniel filed bankruptcy petitions for all 16 entities. The scam was highlighted on CNBC’s American Greed national television show, “Scam in Cyberspace”.
The art and science of effectively negotiating through a workout or receivership has many nuances and hidden potholes where experience will help navigate the course. Daniel has dedicated more than 30,000 hours of his career to turnaround and receivership management. As receivership and bankruptcy worlds increasingly intersect, effective communication and decisive action is required to maintain compliance with the courts and maintain effective administration of the estate.
Daniel continuously makes presentations to law firms and banks and has participated in panel discussions with organizations such as the Turnaround Management Association (TMA) and Risk Management Association (RMA) and Michigan Bankers Association (MBA). Additionally, Amicus frequently hosts networking/educational events with audiences ranging from 50 to over 100 guests where speakers present new and relevant topics related to distressed asset management.
Daniel holds a master’s degree in business administration from Western Michigan University and a bachelor’s degree in finance from Loyola University in New Orleans. He is a Certified Commercial Investment Member (CCIM) as well as a licensed real estate broker.
With more than 17 years experience in real estate transactions and court documentation, Starrla McDonald makes it her business to know the exact status of Amicus projects and communicate that information clearly to all stakeholders including court personnel, attorneys, creditors, plaintiffs, and defendants.
But Starrla’s involvement goes far beyond that of a reporting function. She takes a hands-on approach to preserving and improving value during disposition by working with on-site managers to make sure they have support and adequate resources to effectively manage the assets. Further, she makes sure that there is smooth transition of ownership of assets, such as Class C and SDD/SDM liquor licenses, from an Amicus receivership to a buyer.
At one point in her career, Starrla managed a portfolio of more than 2,000 real estate owned (REO) properties spanning seven states. Her involvement in thousands of commercial/residential real estate closings has given her significant expertise in REO property management. That experience has served her well as project manager for multi-family and commercial properties.
She holds a bachelor’s degree from Western Michigan University.
As project director for Amicus, Kent Carpenter is responsible for maintaining the value of ongoing businesses and real estate assets until they can be sold or liquidated at their best possible valuations. With years of experience in the mechanical trades, sales, management, and the health care industry located throughout the greater Midwest region, Kent has assembled financials, charted courses of sales and marketing programs, handled human resource matters, and assumed other executive functions to keep businesses healthy.
When it comes to marketing the assets under his care, Kent knows how to highlight the compelling sales aspects of properties and taps his network of potential corporate buyers that are experienced with large capital transactions. As a former owner and manager of his own commercial real estate firm, Kent can converse with potential buyers in a language they understand and trust.
Kent holds a bachelor’s degree in business with emphasis in marketing from Ferris State University, has completed courses in Dale Carnegie training, and has specialized technical training in mechanical systems for buildings.
As a project director for Amicus, Brandt Iden uses his extensive experience in operating businesses, developing real estate, and dealing with municipal entities to maintain and enhance the value of business assets under the firm’s management.
On the private sector side, Brandt is a founding partner in Baron Builders Inc., a
Michigan-based company involved in construction, real estate development, property management, and investments. As director of multi-family housing operations, his responsibilities included property negotiations, acquisitions, development, and management.
Brandt also served as chief operating officer of Baron Properties & Warehousing Inc., an FDA-approved transportation and warehousing distribution center that serviced a number of multinational clients such as Bristol-Myers Squibb and Pfizer Corp. In the course of his duties, he was responsible for negotiating leases, setting shipping and dispatching routes, managing daily operations, and assisting with marketing and financial strategic plans.
In addition to his private sector development experience, Brandt also brings a unique perspective on municipal management. Currently serving as a Kalamazoo County Commissioner, he has in-depth knowledge of governmental accounting practices, inter-governmental authorities, and municipal contract negotiations. Brandt is a state of Michigan- certified Emergency Financial Manager and is an appointed member of the Kalamazoo County Brownfield Development Authority and Kalamazoo County Economic Development Authority.
Brandt holds a bachelor’s degree in political science and economics from Kalamazoo College, and he attended the University of London, U.K. where he studied international political relations.
Bryan Fitzgibbon anchors the Amicus Management Detroit office as a Project Director focused on litigation support and building communication with the legal, banking, and governmental sectors in Southeast Michigan. Bryan has a long history of introducing Detroit area law firms and corporate law departments to the latest technologies used in ediscovery to reduce the cost of litigation and speed document collection, organization and production.
Prior to joining Amicus, Bryan worked with teams of professionals in the Detroit legal community for more than 13 years to select and implement the best solutions for cost-effective data collection, data culling techniques and analytics. His experience with Merrill Corporation and other suppliers of ediscovery solutions has brought Bryan in contact with experts and professionals from just about every walk of business life in metro Detroit.
Bryan holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration from Ferris State University in Big Rapids.
As an independent business analyst and consultant, Benjamin Bulley implemented adjustments in Amicus Management’s business operations and streamlined the project management procedures. His initiatives were necessary to assist Amicus with its rapid growth.
Ben’s vast experience in business management includes successfully managing a retail lighting company that fell into receivership. He implemented new procedures ranging from accounting to inventory and operations to training—the turnaround took less than four months.
His effective negotiating skills resulted in a telecommunication company securing contracts to the top management of both the IT and telecommunications departments of the State of Michigan. Ben’s sales expertise was evident in his taking a metro Detroit wholesale company from $4m in sales to $20m in less than four years. Within two years the business was sold to a large publicly held company.
Ben has an innate ability to see the potential in a business, regardless of what may appear to others as a seemingly hopeless situation. The principals of Amicus Management utilize this ability effectively—internally and externally.
As director of brokerage for Amicus Management, Chad Razmus is responsible for developing effective marketing materials and presentations for assets under the firm’s management and reports that inform clients on the status of their cases. With more than 10 years experience as a commercial real estate salesperson and 13 years of experience in graphic design, Chad has a unique combination of training and know-how to bridge the gap between the creative and analytical for the benefit of Amicus clients.
Chad has studied graphic design and photographic arts at the New York Institute of Photography, completed all the coursework for the Certified Commercial Investment Member (CCIM) designation, and received training at Michigan State University for developing commercial real estate from vacant land to final phases of construction.
With more than 20 years experience in the credit collection business and more than a dozen years as a private investigator, Lou Betten has particular expertise in uncovering the most pertinent facts in the case of a distressed business and acting on them quickly to maintain the underlying value of the asset. Lou’s experience includes 20 years in manufacturing sales and management.
As a project manager for Amicus, Lou will interview and gain the cooperation of key employees to determine the true status of the business, determine appropriate staffing levels, oversee the valuation of real and personal property to be sold, and supervise the sale or liquidation. In the course of his decade of work with Amicus, Lou has performed some or all of these functions in industries including hospitality, retail, and manufacturing.
As a private investigator licensed in the state of Michigan and former detective for a local municipality, Lou is exceptionally efficient at collecting solid information on a distressed business and developing an appropriate action plan to protect creditors. For instance, he is credited with securing an entire warehouse of saleable computer equipment and other tangible assets of Cyberco Holdings and its Cybernet subsidiaries. The sale of those assets generated significant cash available for distribution to creditors and investors.
In her role as project accountant at Amicus Management, Jody Sprite makes sure all the numbers add up the way they should for the business assets that the firm manages. With more than 18 years of experience in private and public accounting, Jody is well versed in maintaining current and accurate financial data such as financial statements, sales withholding taxes, payroll for employees, and account daily receivables and payables for customers and vendors.
But Jody has a much deeper understanding of the businesses that Amicus manages that goes well beyond spreadsheets and ledgers. Jody has served as the general manager and controller/human resources manager for a total of 8 years at a full service hotel with 120 rooms, a bar and restaurant, and large banquet facility. So she has first-hand knowledge about what it takes to run businesses successfully. In addition to her hospitality experience, Jody has worked with gas stations, marinas, and other business ventures.
Jody holds a bachelor’s degree in business management with a minor in human resources from Wayne State University.
Hagen Voelkers, CHA, CFBE
As director of hotel management for Amicus Management, Hagen Voelkers has acted as consultant and manager of receiverships, voluntary workouts and bankruptcies of hotels, marinas, and other hospitality properties. With his intimate knowledge and training acquired over the past 30 years, Hagen is able to provide exceptional advice in the operations and management of hospitality properties, including both full and limited-service hotels and restaurants located in resorts, airports, and urban convention centers.
For instance, Hagen provided wide-ranging leadership during a workout of a Michigan resort hotel and marina that involved all Chapter 11 reporting requirements, including cash flow projections, budgets, and asset disclosure. Hagen reviewed all internal systems, organized sales teams, and coached staff to reduce the property’s operating expenses and preserve the asset value during its sale.
Prior to his association with Amicus, Hagen served as general manager, regional director of operations, and director of marketing and sales for hospitality industry companies operating the Sheraton, Ramada, Marriott, Holiday Inn, Howard Johnson’s, and Choice Hotel brands.
Voelkers is a Certified Hotel Administrator (CHA) and a Certified Food & Beverage Executive (CFBE) since 1980. He received his undergraduate degree in hotel and restaurant management in Hannover, Germany, and pursued graduate studies in economics and finance at St. John’s University, Queens, New York.