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Meet The Team

Chris Hawker, CEO

Chris Hawker is a senior leadership trainer, inventor and professional speaker. He has trained numerous teams at organizations like Duracell and McDonald’s in emotional intelligence and innovation. He coaches entrepreneurs, executives and creative professionals in living their vision. His inventions have received 40 patents, and his work has been featured in USA Today, the New York Times and Wall Street Journal. He is co-founder of Next Level Trainings, which has trained thousands of individuals, raising over $4M in charitable donations. He is also the CEO of Small Software, a startup serving franchise operators with cultural management software. He resides in Columbus, OH, with his wife, son and dog.

Stephen Thomas, CCO

Stephen Thomas is a senior leadership trainer, with experience in developing high performance teams, as well as training other trainers. He is the CEO at Next Level Trainings, a personal development leadership program, delivering extraordinary results through vision-based coaching. He is also Director of PATH, an elite trainer development program. He is an expert in curriculum design and facilitation. Stephen has a background in theater, and brings 14 years of experience in the music industry to the band. He resides in Columbus, OH with his wife, and still travels frequently to see concerts.

Journey Jill

JJ is a leadership trainer who began her business success with a bachelor’s degree in Finance, certificate of International Business and emphasis in Spanish from Arizona State University.  She served as Vice President in a variety of Risk and Compliance roles during her 13 years in Banking. She is a certified Yoga and Meditation Teacher, and graduate of advanced leadership, emotional intelligence, and transformation trainings including PATH. JJ has visited 71 countries and is grateful to be “living her favorite” on Maui where she is a local tour guide and business consultant. JJ is passionate about leading teams to excellence and improving organizational performance through her unique and powerful training style and ability to inspire teams into action!

James Ladas

James Ladas is a professional fixer, attorney and technology leader.  He has worked with cutting edge technology companies to create and bring products and services to market in multiple industries including geothermal environmental systems, solar, financial technology and legal services. James studied at The Wharton School, Tulane, and Harvard Law.  His goal is to spread the massive benefits of emotional intelligence to the world by building corporate culture.  He resides in Austin Texas, where he owns a boutique RV park and coaches breathwork and meditation in his spare time.