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About Us

Our leadership team members have diverse experience and industry intelligence. Collectively we have the knowledge, experience and financial acumen to bring our clients opportunities to grow their business with sound, innovative strategies.

Meet The Team

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Luke  

Chief Executive Officer

Luke began his consulting career with Capgemini Ernst & Young in their St. Louis office, before moving to Northwest Arkansas in 2004. He has held positions at several of the nation’s largest consumer packaged goods companies including the Dr. Pepper Snapple Group, Ghirardelli Chocolate and Unilever. His many roles within these companies gave him the unique opportunity to develop a diverse skill set, allowing him to gain experience and expertise in logistics, category management, P&L management, strategy, team management and sales.

 

Luke earned his undergraduate degree from Tulane University before continuing his education at the University of Arkansas where he received a Master of Business Administration from the university’s Sam M. Walton College of Business. 

 

In 2014, Luke’s daughter Sloane passed away, impacting both his personal and professional life. He now volunteers much of his time to other parents coping with child loss, in addition to serving on the Northwest Arkansas American Heart Association Board of Directors. Today, Luke approaches life with passion, enjoying live music, traveling, and going on adventures with his wife, Kimberly, and son, Carson. He is an avid foodie, particularly fond of New Orleans-inspired cuisine, and is an avid participant in the culture of that city, serving as a member of the Mardi Gras krewe.

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Nic

Chief Customer Officer

Nic is a 2008 graduate of Indiana University and moved to Northwest Arkansas for his first job at the Walmart Home Office as a buyer trainee in the Shoe Department. Nic held several positions at Walmart and Walmart.com from 2008-2020 including Seasonal Candy Planner, Wine & Spirits Buyer, Frozen Pizza & Breakfast Sr. Buyer, eCommerce Sr. Buyer Floorcare & Large Appliances, Sr. Merchandise Mgr. Home Storage/Floorcare/Large Appliances, and Planning Director for the Home Division.

 

In 2020, Nic left Walmart to pursue a food innovation idea and began working at Happi Foodi as their Vice President of Sales & Business Development. Since Day 1 of being a merchant, Nic is all about putting the customer first and bringing to the market disruptive innovation where it is needed as quickly as possible.  When not advocating for the customer,

 

Nic and his wife Olivia enjoy concerts and festivals, traveling to all parts of the world, hiking, golfing, attending the NCAA Final Four every year, and staying busy with their two Miniature Schnauzers, Aikman and Ripley.

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Amanda

Senior Sales Director

Amanda is a 13-year veteran of both Walmart and Sam’s Club, where she was a Merchant for categories ranging from Birdseed to Beer with P&Ls exceeding $2B. Amanda has a customer-obsessed, solution-driven mentality who is an expert in strategic joint business planning, omnichannel product launches, P&L budget management, and vendor negotiations.

 

To diversify her professional experience, Amanda left Walmart in 2021 to join Hormel Foods, where she worked as the Senior Account Executive on the Jennie-O Turkey Store business for the Walmart & Sam's Club account.  A native Arkansan, Amanda holds an undergraduate degree in Financial Management from the Sam M. Walton School of Business at the University of Arkansas and an MBA from John Brown University.

 

Outside of work, Amanda can be found in the Ozarks Camping–with her Husband, Morgan, young son Graham, and their dog, Hank, or relaxing with a glass of wine while listening to True Crime podcasts.

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Steven

Sales Director

A Little Rock native, Steven Nichols is an analytics and sales professional, with 15 years of experience with Walmart and Sam’s Club. Steven’s expertise is in business development, customer insights, syndicated data and account management.

 

He has lived in Northwest Arkansas for 19 years and has held analytics roles at Walmart, Samsclub.com, and sales roles in the adult beverage category. Steven earned an MBA from University of Arkansas in 2013 and holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Information Systems from the University of Arkansas.

 

Steven has two young boys, Knox and Lincoln, a daughter named Quinn, and enjoys a variety of outdoor activities such as hiking and cycling. He is also passionate about traveling and is always in pursuit of great music, wine and culinary experiences.

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Karlee

National Account Manager

Originally from New Braunfels, Texas, Karlee and her husband,Tanner, relocated to Northwest Arkansas in 2017 shortly after they were married.  Before joining New Nexus Group, she worked for Tyson in a variety of capacities; as a Deductions Analyst, Senior Supervisor of Accounting and as a sales execution and pricing analyst.

 

Currently, Karlee is pursuing her undergraduate degree at the University of Arkansas Walton College of Business and expects to graduate in Spring of 2025. Tanner and Karlee live in Centerton with their three children; Braelynn, Maci and Brooks.

 

An interesting thing about Karlee is that she and her husband are  beekeepers and have been establishing an apiary on a property they share with their friends. In addition to beekeeping, she has recently added a couple other hobbies to her agenda; gardening and CrossFit. When not working, she enjoys travelling with her family, checking out new restaurants and breweries and is considered an avid Texas A&M fan along with the rest of her family members!

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Trent

Senior Manager- Merchandising Operations

Born in Madison, Wisconsin, Trent moved to Northwest Arkansas with his family in 2001 and has lived in the area most of his life. In 2011, he attended the University of Arkansas (U of A) to pursue a degree in Marketing Management.

 

While working towards his degree, Trent spent time working for a broker in Rogers where he discovered a passion for Retail Sales. Upon graduating from the U of A, Trent took a position with Domtar Personal Care to support Walmart’s Private Label Diaper and Adult Incontinence business. During those four years at Domtar, Trent developed a strong foundation of Replenishment and Supply Chain Management experience that he continues to develop at New Nexus Group.

 

Outside of the office, Trent has a passion for hockey, pickleball, fishing, live music and spending time with his friends, family, and girlfriend Erica.

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Brad

Senior Manager- Merchandising Operations

A Fayetteville native, Brad is a supply chain professional with over 17 years of experience working within
Fortune 500 companies. His expertise lies in replenishment, transportation, and account management.


Brad graduated from the University of Arkansas in 2008 with a degree in Marketing Management.
During his time at the U of A, he began working at J.B. Hunt Transport Services in their operations
department. After 10 years he moved over to The Kellogg Company where he spent 5 years fine-tuning
his skills toward Walmart’s replenishment programs. His next stop was at The Campbell Soup Company
before finally arriving at New Nexus in 2023.

In his free time Brad enjoys spending quality time with his wife, Nicole, and their two children, Autumn
and Presley. Other pastimes include music festivals, cheering on the Razorbacks, and traveling with his
family .

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Bianca  

Senior Director of Omnichannel

Bianca DiFonzo is a seasoned professional in the dynamic world of omnichannel retail merchandising, bringing over a decade of expertise to our team as the Senior Director of Omnichannel. Her career journey reflects a deep commitment to enhancing the customer experience through strategic merchandising initiatives.

 

In her role, Bianca will be at the helm of our omnichannel strategy, leveraging her comprehensive understanding of retail dynamics to create seamless and integrated shopping experiences. Her track record is a testament to her ability to align merchandising strategies with consumer behaviors, driving both online and in-store success. Having held key positions in leading retail organizations as a Vice President at Serta Simmons Bedding and a Merchandising Director at Walmart, she has navigated the intricate landscape of assortment strategy, inventory management, digital marketing optimization, technology road-mapping and pricing strategies, Bianca is well-equipped to lead our team to new heights.

 

Bianca earned her Bachelor's degree in Retailing and Consumer Sciences from the University of Arizona, where she honed her strategic thinking and analytical skills. Her continued dedication to staying at the forefront of industry trends ensures that our omnichannel retail strategies are not only effective but also innovative. With her unique blend of strategic vision, retail acumen, and commitment to an enhanced customer journey, Bianca is a valuable addition to our team, steering our omnichannel retail merchandising efforts towards new horizons of success.

 

Outside of work, Bianca and her partner Dylan enjoy spending time with their two cats, travelling to new destinations, spoiling their nieces and nephews and playing pickleball with friends on Sundays.

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Shari

Director of Administration

Shari is native to Northwest Arkansas and has experienced the tremendous business growth in the area firsthand.  She has been in the supply chain industry for over 12 years and has worked for large companies such as Apex Tool Group and Crane Valves North America.  S

 

hari’s finance, supply chain/logistics, and inventory management experience has assisted companies in improving their business operations, increasing sales and profits, and providing the right products to market on time for superior customer service.   She studied Business Administration at the University of Arkansas.   

 

When away from the office, Shari is an artist and exhibitor and enjoys all the local art presentations and events. Growing up on Beaver Lake, Shari and her family spend time boating, fishing, and enjoying the outdoors.

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Tim

Sales Director

A native of New Jersey, Tim began his career with LEGO Systems and has a wide background in the CPG industry, calling on many different National and Regional accounts, the past 18 years focused on Walmart.

Tim prides himself on building a trust-based relationship with his customers and builds his business through fact-based actionable information. Tim has a degree in Advertising and Communications from New England College in Henniker New Hampshire, where he ran Cross Country and was Captain of the team as a Senior, he continues to run to this day.

Tim and his wife Laurie have two grown children who also live in NW Arkansas. They enjoy working on their forever home and collecting antiques. Tim is a serious history buff and is an avid reader of American history.

Tim is also a rabid St. Louis Cardinals fan!

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Tim  

Co-Founder

Originally from Olean, New York, Tim relocated to Northwest Arkansas in 2004. He has over 30 years of experience in the consumer packaged goods industry, having taken on a variety of roles -- everything from engineering to product development, working supply chain, brand management and sales leadership.

 

Tim earned his bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from Lafayette College in Easton, Pennsylvania, and holds an MBA from Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, Connecticut. Prior to New Nexus Group, he has worked for companies such as Cadbury Beverages, Dr Pepper Snapple Group, and IRI.

 

Tim has been married to his wife Susan for 33 years, and they enjoy live music and outdoor activities such as biking. They have three daughters, Haley, Erin, and Tara.

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Brendon

SVP Merchandising Operations

Brendon began his retail career with Walmart in 2003, learning the store level complexities as a store support manager while attending college at Henderson State University. This experience opened doors that allowed him to take a leadership position after graduation with BBA Corporation, an industry leading omni channel book company, where he grew from Store Manager to Market Manager, before making the move up to Northwest Arkansas and back to Walmart Home Office in 2014.

 

Brendon’s experience at Walmart spanned across multiple categories within Food, from cookies and crackers to pasta and pasta sauce and many in between. Within merchandising operations Brendon honed his expertise in commodities, managing end-to-end supply chain for some of the largest categories within Dry Grocery, namely shelf stable proteins, coffee, and tea. His experience was further expanded when he gained responsibility for the commercial bread department, mastering the highly complex omni channel supply chain processes for both. After a fulfilling career with Walmart, Brendon sought an opportunity to innovate within food for Happi Foodi as their VP of Customer Supply Chain and Operations. This role allowed disruption with speed to become a natural part of his retail arsenal.

 

After the workday is done, Brendon and his wife Kristin enjoy boating on Beaver Lake, attending concerts, and showing their daughter Kylie the ropes when it comes to negotiation.

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James  

Senior Sales Director

A native of Northwest Arkansas, James graduated from the University of Arkansas in 2008 with a B.S.B.A degree.  Now with more than 15 years of CPG experience across HBA and Color Cosmetics.

 

James's experience spans across all functional roles from analytics, CatMan, supply & financial forecasting, sales & team management, merchandising, and total P&L ownership.  His end-to-end experience derives from the most complex category in the world.  Strong reputation for helping organizations make better business decisions that align with company strategies and developing analytical capabilities to provide meaningful, actionable recommendations.  Most importantly, he is a successful leader with a vision of "how to win" by bringing people together to make the impossible a little more possible.

 

Outside of work, James enjoys spending time with his girlfriend Salinda and 3 dogs, Roxy, Tucker, and Rocky.  They all 5 enjoy everything outdoors from hiking, trout fishing, camping, riding rzr's, and spending time on the water.  James's passion outside of work is preparing incredible meats, desserts, essentially all things food on his Big Green Egg's.  He is very well known in his family as the "Funcle > Fun Uncle"!

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Megan

Sales Director

Megan moved to Northwest Arkansas to begin her retail career with Walmart after graduating from the University of Kentucky.  During her 14 years with Walmart, Megan held Merchant roles across several categories including Men’s Apparel, Shoes, Hardware and Baby Hardlines. Megan was able to achieve results and improve value to the customer by identifying opportunities to reverse down-trending businesses and strengthen stable and up-trending businesses, utilizing “beginning to end” category management, and building working relationships with over 100 Suppliers as a Merchant.

 

Looking to broaden and deepen her business knowledge, Megan left Walmart in 2020 to join Energizer Holdings as a Category Manager. In this role, Megan worked directly with Walmart Merchants advising and influencing modular and business decisions.

 

A Kentucky native, Megan met her husband Chris in Northwest Arkansas. They have two children, Mason and Reese. When not in the office, Megan enjoys spending time with family and friends, attending concerts, traveling, volunteering at Mason’s school, and cheering for her beloved Kentucky Wildcats.

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Laura

Senior Sales Manager, e-commerce

Laura is a graduate of the University of Arkansas. After college she started her own business as the owner/designer of Laura Madison Premium Denim, a tall women’s denim line, that she ran for 8 years. She sold her line to boutiques and customers across the US as well as the UK and Australia.

 

She then transitioned to the Sam’s Club Corporate office, working in Club Pickup, on the Jewelry/Apparel dotcom buying team and as a Web Content Producer where she supported all dotcom buying teams. Laura has been supporting suppliers from the broker side since 2020 in the creative space as well as in Account Management.

 

When she isn’t working, she loves watching her daughter, Madison, play volleyball in high school and club. She also loves traveling, swimming, shopping , spending time with family, and the RAZORBACKS!!

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Philip

Senior Manager- Merchandising Operations

Philip Firth is a customer supply chain professional, with over 10 years of combined experience within retail. Originally from Oklahoma, Philip and his family moved to Northwest Arkansas in 2000. He obtained his Bachelor of Science in Biology from the University of Arkansas in 2010 and his MBA from Upper Iowa University in 2015. 

 

Philip has extensive experience in Fresh replenishment, managing various Produce categories at Walmart as well as Packaged Salads with Bonduelle Fresh Americas.  In addition, he has diversified his supply chain experience with positions in Production Scheduling at Simmons Foods and Transportation Management with Uber Freight. 

 

Philip is an avid Razorback fan and enjoys attending sporting events with his family.  You can also spot him on a local golf course or sporting clay range.

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Alex

Manager- Merchandising Operations

Alex moved to Northwest Arkansas in 2002 from Centennial, Colorado and fell in love with the area.  He has been married to Maggie, a kindergarten teacher for nine years. They love animals and have three dogs and a cat. 

 

Alex is currently pursuing his Bachelor of Business Administration with a focus in analytics from University of Central Arkansas.  Working in supply chain and analytics is his passion.  

 

When not working, he enjoys spending time with his family, hiking, playing board games or enjoying a game of basketball or ping pong. He is also a loyal Denver Broncos fan and continues to root for them from Northwest Arkansas.

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Chris

Manager- Merchandising Operations

A native of Northwest Arkansas, Chris graduated from the University of Arkansas in 2002 with a degree in Marketing Management.  Now with more than 18 years of experience in merchandise operations,

 

Chris has been exposed to many different facets in the CPG industry from managing inventory to product distribution working to maximize profitability. He understands and values cross-functional teamwork, and believes it is vital to build relationships with marketing, sales, and procurement teams.  Chris works with a collaborative spirit to help ensure the organization works in harmony to achieve excellence.

 

Outside of work, Chris enjoys spending time with his wife Cassady and 3 children, Layla, Brenner, and Cohen.  The Watkins family enjoys everything outdoors from hiking, mountain biking, camping, and spending time on the water.  Chris’ passions outside of the office are running, trail racing and playing guitar as a worship team member at Cross Church Fayetteville.  

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Shera  

Senior Manager - Merchandising Operations

Originally an Oklahoma native, Shera moved to Northwest Arkansas after graduating from Pittsburg State University with a BBA in Accounting while playing softball for the Lady Gorillas.

 

Shera began her career in Accounting before joining the CPG world 15 years ago. Shera has worked in Forecasting, Insights, Analytics, Replenishment and Supply Chain for Walmart and the Club channel across categories spanning hardlines to grocery.

 

In her spare time, Shera loves watching any sport especially while cheering on Oklahoma Sooners and Chicago Bears as well as attending Chicago Cub games at Wrigley Field. You can also find her at games/events/recitals/all occasions of her nephews and nieces, playing with her 2 cats, Lewy & Eddie, or enjoying live music.  Shera is always up for some fun (don’t tempt her with a costume party) and new hobbies to stay active like Peloton and pickleball.

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