Chris White

Founder and Principal

Chris has been leading and consulting to purpose-driven organizations for more than 20 years. He is co-author of Changing Your Company From the Inside Out (HBR Press), and recipient of the Aspen Institute’s “Ideas Worth Teaching Award” for excellence in business education. His thought leadership has been widely featured, including by TED, HBR, Forbes, Fast Company, Inc., and Chief Executive magazines. He is proud to be a Faculty Associate at the Center for Positive Organizations and adjunct faculty in Management & Organizations at the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business.
Chris fundamentally believes that workplaces can and should be vehicles for people to learn, grow, create, connect, and contribute to meaningful outcomes. But over time, sometimes they can get blocked. With the right approach and commitment, they can be unblocked – leading to better results and experiences for everyone involved. 
Chris is based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, with his wife Katy, son Crosby, dog Ringo, and cat McCatney. 

Rick Haller

Executive Consultant

Rick was President and COO of Walbridge for almost 25 years.  He was part of a leadership team of four civil engineers who came to Walbridge in their 20’s to grow the company from a small regional general contractor in southeast Michigian to a 43X larger multinational and multifaceted company. He developed service offerings, competencies, and processes to serve diverse manufacturing, technology, and institutional customers in North and South America, Middle East, and occasionally Asia and Europe.

As Rick matured in business he began to recognize the critical and lasting impact that a positive culture has on measurable business success, including improved operating results, exponential improvements in safety, creativity, and loyalty, and an ingrained ability to adapt and change to remain relevant and successful. He knew and guided building cultures that valued people, and in doing so his company was able to thrive.   

Rick spends much of his time with family. 

Ron May

Executive Consultant

Ron has worked his entire career in the utility business.  He began working for a regional construction company building electrical generation facilities.  Moving from a director to Vice President, he began consulting with a small project management firm.  He finished his career with a large, 3 million customer utility as Executive Vice President.  The variety of experiences including coal fire and nuclear generation operations, to distribution system development and operation, to executive leadership and strategic projects development and execution was both enriching and fulfilling. 
He was involved in several strategic culture transformations in his career from mergers and reorganizations to crisis management. What he discovered along the way was that he didn’t need to make mistakes to know what to do better the next time.  There are science and research based approaches to transformation that he could learn from and implement with a higher degree of success.  After the 2008 financial crisis, he was introduced to the Center for Positive Organizations.  He was amazed by how much insight and implementation practices he could employ to make the lives of so many better. 
Ron has been married for 45 years.  He is so happy he chose the right partner for life.  They have lived through tough times and have emerged stronger.  They have two adult children and they have four grandchildren between them.  Ron and his wife love to travel and have been to Europe, Russia, China, Japan, and throughout the United States.  They love Michigan and their home town of Rochester Hills. 

Rich Smalling

Executive Consultant

Rich is a servant leader, advisor, philanthropist, husband, father and friend. For 25 years, Rich led American Innovations, a provider of solutions that help the oil and gas industry comply with regulations and operate safely. With a great team of engaged colleagues, Rich helped grow AI and navigate through difficult challenges. Along the way, Rich became passionate about positive business practices that create thriving organizations and the impact of thriving organizations on society.
Rich is an Executive in Residence at the Center for Positive Business at the Michigan Ross School of Business and an advisor to the College of Engineering at Virginia Tech. He is on the board of Origin Materials, a Sacramento-based start-up biochemical business. Since 2003, he has been an avid supporter of Creative Action, an Austin nonprofit organization delivering interactive theatre programs to youth in Central Texas. Rich is a founder of the Austin Together Fund which encourages collaborations among nonprofits in Central Texas.
Rich loves to spend time with his wife Anne and daughters Marina and Samantha, especially if it involves travel, music, food, wine, biking, hiking or pretty much any other game or sport you can come up with.

Sarah Kurtz McKinnon

Consultant

Sarah is the founder of The Summer Camp Society, a professional development collaborative for camp owners and directors, providing educational content, connection and innovation for nearly 3,000 camp leaders in the U.S., Canada, and around the world. She is the former director of Ann Arbor YMCA Camp Al-Gon-Quian in Northern Michigan, serving more than 1,200 children and 85 staff and volunteers each year, and is also part of the teaching team for two Management & Organizations classes in the Online MBA program at the UofM Ross School of Business.
She believes everyone deserves to thrive. People spend most of their time at work—maybe more time, even, then they spend with their family, friends or doing things they love. Workplaces need to be designed and constantly re-designed so that people can thrive: so that life is worth living, whether at work or not.

Personally, Sarah has never met a racquet sport that she didn’t like.

Katy White

 Project Manager

Katy’s mission is to create spaces that allow people to activate their best-self through deep connection and reflection. Throughout her professional career in Higher Education, this mission has been embodied through student coaching and program management. She has served as a coach to both undergraduate and graduate students studying in fields such as psychology, business, architecture, and computer science, helping them discover and engage their strengths and values. Program management for Katy has taken many forms, including guiding student ambassador programs, organizing events on campus, and engaging teams in professional, personal, and team development. No matter the project, Katy grounds her work in purpose, growth, and efficiency.

Katy believes that genuine care and trust are essential parts of what unlocks an organization’s or team’s potential. Positive strategic culture transformation teaches and embeds organizational norms that foster these values.

Katy’s family and friends are the heartbeat of her world. She especially loves taking family walks with her husband (Chris), toddler (Crosby), and dog (Ringo) and hosting game nights (favorite games include Mysterium, Splendor, and Salad Bowl) with friends and extended family. Other favorite hobbies include producing puns and rewriting lyrics of popular songs for special occasions.

Amy Bunch

Consultant

Amy Shively Bunch has spent more than two decades working to effect positive change in society, organizations and individuals. She works with clients to drive a wide variety of organizational development and culture-building initiatives and serves as an executive coach.

Since 2009, Amy has worked within the University of Michigan in several roles to develop and implement strategies designed to engage stakeholders in a vision for positive change; support diversity, equity and inclusion goals, increase employee engagement; and drive organizational performance. Prior to joining the university, Amy spent 12 years working with nonprofit organizations and issue campaigns providing expertise in message development, leadership positioning, stakeholder engagement, organizational strategic planning, and communications strategy.

Amy integrates Positive Organizational Scholarship into her work as a change agent and coach, with a particular focus on developing real-world, tactical interventions that support deep change in individuals and organizations. A passionate and dedicated learner herself, Amy helps leaders at all levels imagine what’s possible and turn vision into action.

She lives in Ann Arbor, MI, with her husband and two daughters. They enjoy traveling, spending time with friends, and undertaking a wide-variety of home improvement projects.

Lisa Simon

Administrator

Lisa Simon has spent the last twenty years helping to build and support small businesses in the Ann Arbor area, primarily in the legal profession.  Lisa has worked as a bookkeeper and office manager and, in recent years, has served hundreds of community members doing seasonal work as a tax preparer.  

When Lisa is not working, you can find her spending time with her husband and two twenty-something children, growing flowers and veggies in her garden, or making intricate patchwork quilts.

Contact Us

info@riverbankconsultinggroup.com

734 210 8454