Don W. Barden
Managing Partner and CEO
Don Barden is Managing Partner and CEO at GaXtracts, where he leads all facets of the business including client development, strategy, sales and marketing. A classically trained economist, Don specializes in corporate leadership, organizational change management and business development. He is also the Founder and CEO of the Perfect Plan Company, which specializes in talent, technology, television, agriculture, finance and leadership training. Don earned his MBA in global technology management and international business and his BBA in economics and finance. He has also completed doctoral studies in international finance and behavioral economics. In addition to his professional achievements, Don has a whole host of personal attributes that make him exceptional, including his humility, his immense generosity, his patriotism, his servant leadership, his rabid love of the Georgia Bulldogs and his penchant for a good cigar or a fine brandy. Despite all these virtues, the talent we most enjoy in Don is his enthusiasm. Oh, and we’re not just taking about some ordinary, average, run-of-the-mill enthusiasm. We’re talking epic enthusiasm here, an effervescent, animated, sparkling, boundless, charismatic, exuberance that grabs you by the lapels and won’t let you go. You will not find a more energetic sponsor or supporter. Don has an effusive, robust vitality. The guy is a human accelerant. A supernova. He is hard wired for action. A virtuoso, a maestro, a marvel. He’s like some omnipotent force. It may have something to do with his predilection for Red Bull (we’re not exactly sure) but once he has you in his grasp, it’s impossible not to get drawn in to his warm, positive, optimistic spirit. Watch out, you could be next.
Robert A. Lee
Managing Partner and Chief Innovation Officer
Robert Lee is Managing Partner and Chief Innovation Officer at GaXtracts. Rob has passionately embraced entrepreneurship since he was sixteen years old, ultimately founding over twenty start-up companies. Always the visionary, Rob led the passage of the Georgia Farm Act, HB 213, a bill which regulates hemp growth and CBD production. Prior to GX, he founded Sylvan Road Capital, HavenBrook Partners, Haven Brook Homes, Chesapeake Development, Axio Design and Rental STAT. Fearless in the face of new challenges, Rob is a resourceful, dedicated, astute problem solver, who has never met a challenge he couldn’t handle. No two days are alike for Rob, he wears many hats. (Personally we prefer him in the black fedora, but maybe that’s just us.) He anticipates curve balls, pivots and adapts to any situation thrown his way. Oh yeah, and there is no question about it: this guy is sharp! We have not found anything (literally anything) that Rob isn’t good at … science, genetics, finance, construction, agriculture, product development, marketing … honestly, it’s a little intimidating. Some of us actually feel like we should genuflect when he walks in the room. He’s also a great listener, an inspiring leader, an uplifting spirit, a cheerful advocate, an ardent supporter and a reassuring voice. Oh, and that voice: it’s a voice that is imbued with this warm, gracious, companionable, dulcet southern charm. Yeah, it’s pretty hard not to like Rob.
Managing Partner and Chief Investment Officer
Brian Fox is Managing Partner and Chief Investment Officer at GaXtracts. With more than thirty years of leadership experience working with large multinational companies, Brian is passionate about exceeding client expectations. Prior to GX, Brian was President and CEO of Franklin Capital Partners. Prior to this, he served as CCO of Raistone Capital, where he was responsible for managing the firm’s global market opportunities, and oversaw all revenue-generating activities for the firm. Prior to this, Brian was Chief Marketing Officer at MetLife Investment Management, where he helped grow the firm’s iconic brand into a $540 billion behemoth around the globe. Brian is an entrepreneur, coach, philanthropist, lecturer and noted public speaker. He has been interviewed extensively by the national print, cable news and broadcast media outlets. Brian’s favorite expression: The difference between “try” and “triumph” is just a little “umph.” On a personal note, Brian is generous, kind and solicitous; he delights in the success of others. He also has a giddy passion for artfully written prose or a creative turn of phrase. When he’s not working, you might find Brian driving (a bit too fast) in his Triumph Spitfire convertible roadster, planting something unexpected in his backyard ornamental garden, milking cows at his family farm or (his favorite pursuit) hiking, mountain climbing and camping with his sixteen year old son, preferably at some remote or exotic place in the world. Brian believes that the more you celebrate your life, the more there is in life to celebrate. In other words, you only live once … so eat the damned chocolate caramel cream whoopie pie already!
Managing Partner and Business Operations
Greg Taboada is Managing Partner and Head of Business Operations at GaXtracts. In this role, Greg oversees daily operations and supply chain logistics, managing products and facilities as the company expands into new areas of bioscience. If a client needs it, he is there to deliver. He never disappoints. He successfully pursues his craft at the intersection of thoughtful commitment and creative execution. Greg takes pride in being agile, quick-thinking, responsive and dexterous. He is known by his peers for doing whatever it takes to make sure everyone involved is set up for success. Greg is a native of Georgia who attended Stanford University on a full football scholarship, majoring in economics and entrepreneurship. He not only meets challenges, he crushes them. He is a highly engaged, deeply involved, hands-on guy who would rather be an active participant than sitting somewhere on the sidelines. He hails from a large Spanish family. Madrileños at heart, they all live close to one another and enjoy family meals, family activities and collective family pursuits. Greg is soft spoken, thoughtful, attentive and fiercely loyal. Greg is the guy everybody wants on their side, and not just because he’s a big, handsome football star. His positive attitude and obliging, cooperative spirit make him the linchpin of any team and an unqualified reason for our success.
Lauren M. Johnson
Director of Business Development
Lauren Johnson is our Director of Business Development. She has decades of experience in the medical and dental sectors, specializing in sales, marketing, training and client relations. She has helped hundreds of dental practices implement scalable leadership systems, drive revenue and enhance their patient experience. Lauren just “gets it.” She is eager, earnest and exuberant. She builds strong client partnerships. Throughout her career, she has become a champion of the customer and is regarded as the virtuoso of any team. Customers love her. Business partners seek her out for her wisdom, knowledge, receptivity and openness. Lauren is approachable, aware, sensitive and kind. We also call her the “barracuda with lipstick” because she will fight vociferously for a client. She is determined, dogged, strident and enthusiastic. She is dedicated to client success and will not relent no matter the situation or circumstance. If you’re looking for fierce enthusiasm and an assiduous attention to detail, you’re looking for Lauren. Witty, intelligent, and up for any challenge, Lauren brings her best to work every day. She is inquisitive, analytical and exacting. She is doggedly determined, tenacious and steadfastly reliable. Lauren keeps us accountable, she keeps us on task, she keeps us grounded. In her free time, Lauren enjoys traveling, spending time with family, hosting large gatherings at her home and diving into a good book. One of her all-time favorite books is Atlas Shrugged as it’s a glorious mess of the philosophical encapsulated in a glorious mess of the mystical. Oh yeah, she’s a keeper. Oh, and one other thing about Lauren. She has a dazzling smile. She has these beautiful, startingly perfect choppers. It must be all that time she spends with dentists!
Business Development Manager
Holly Anderson is our Business Development Manager. She has a diverse background in sales and business development including positions in sports marketing, disaster restoration and retail management. Holly served as the executive director of a non-profit ballet company, has taught all disciplines of dance at various studios, and has coached several competitive teams, including the NBA G-League basketball team, the Erie Bayhawks. Holly earned a BS in business administration with a focus on economics. She also serves currently as a member of the Atlanta Hawks Dance Team. Holly is bold, courageous, confident and self-assured. We also like the fact that she always carries lip gloss because she likes to do everything with a little bit of extra style and class. Witty, intelligent and ready for any challenge, Holly brings a dynamic spirit to everything she does. She’s always up for a new adventure. She has an inquisitive and vibrant spirit, whether it involves busting moves on the dance floor or generating revenue for the company. She’s always open to a new challenge or helping her colleagues with a complex project. Holly is sharp, eager to succeed and a compulsive over-deliverer. We also like to marvel at her beautiful, impossibly-long eye lashes. We think that any day now she’s going to get a call from L’Oreal to sign her up for a mascara commercial. We think she’s “worth it.”
US Brand Ambassador
Dan Lier is our US Brand Ambassador. He earned this title because he embodies everything an ambassador should be: diplomatic, gracious, polite, optimistic, kind … the consummate plenipotentiary. Dan’s resume is beyond impressive: he is a best-selling author, a sales and leadership expert, a motivational speaker, a business consultant, an executive coach, and a highly sought-after television personality. He specializes in personal achievement and his mission is to help others tap into what’s possible. At 6’8” Dan is truly a “giant” in sales and leadership. After winning two successive National Championships as a college basketball player, Dan was obsessed by what separates champions from average performers. Dan’s tenure as the #1 sales rep for the famous Tony Robbins virtually changed the selling paradigm within the Robbins organization. He then went on to launch his own company and his work has been featured on the Today Show, Inside Edition and he has been a guest on the Howard Stern Show and the O’Reilly Factor. He can deliver an impactful message and when Dan speaks, everyone in the room listens. Dan has a gift for sharing authentic stories and approachable anecdotes that excite, galvanize embolden and inspire. He’s the real deal, the genuine article, the bee’s knees, the cat’s pajamas, the dog’s bollocks … well … you get the idea. Dan is just a genuinely superior person and we’re super stoked to have him on our team.