DSWA Advisory Board

The Industry's Best Are Working For You!

The DSWA Advisory Board is comprised of a team of distinguished executives and industry leaders. These individuals have been selected to help shape the future of the Alliance by increasing its visibility and providing expert guidance on how the DSWA can better serve their members and the profession.



Katharine GardnerKatharine Gardner

From shyly ringing her first doorbell for Avon to boldly creating her own fashion direct selling company, Kate has sought to learn and share direct selling best practices designed to assure success for both the independent consultant and the company.  In the latter 1990’s her marketing vision broke early “social selling” ground in cross-channel sales, promoting products in tandem home and televised parties.

Kate has served multiple terms on the DSA/DSEF Board of Directors and is currently serving on the DSEF Board of Directors.    It is an honor to be invited to serve on the DSWA Advisory Board.  From great collaborations come extraordinary achievements.

For more than 10 years Kate has maintained Gardner & Co as a consulting firm leveraging her 35+ year career in direct selling.  As a seasoned and successful direct selling executive, Kate has played key roles in the business development of many companies and devotes her time and expertise to supporting, mentoring and resourcing for her colleagues’ companies.

Kate is a degreed professional with a BA in Education from UNC. Her first and dominant joy is centered on raising her beautiful, spirited and talented 15 year old granddaughter, Victoria with Victoria’s father, Ryan, Kate’s son.

Learn more about Kate on LinkedIn.


Mark Victor HansenMark Victor Hansen

For over 28 years, Mark Victor Hansen has focused solely on helping people in all walks of life reshape their personal vision of what's possible. From Bangladesh to Birmingham, Mark's keynote messages of possibility, opportunity, and action have helped create startling and powerful changes in more than 2 million people in 38 countries.

Mark Victor Hansen has been called one of the "Top 10 Greatest Motivational Speakers." He has been inducted into the highly acclaimed circle of Horatio Alger recipients in honor of the remarkable path of service, contribution, and accomplishment he has created for himself.

Mark Victor Hansen is enthusiastic about his involvement on the DSWA Board of Advisors and looks forward to making a significant contribution to the Alliance's efforts to elevate this rapidly growing and life-changing industry. Visit Mark's web site for more information.


Scott KramerScott Kramer

Scott Kramer is considered a pioneer in developing and producing integrated/multi-platform strategies. His credits run the gamut of television, film, digital, publishing and large-scale live events.

Kramer currently serves as chief brain at Multibrain, an award winning digital agency, specializing in building "collaborative communities" for brands of all sizes throughout the US, with a specialty in working with Direct Selling organizations. Kramer is also a popular keynote speaker on Social Media and travels the US speaking to a wide variety of businesses across multiple categories. He is often reviewed for his humor and ability to simplify technology for his audience to grasp and leave with a clear understanding of the topic.

Kramer graduated from Purdue University with his BA in Communications. He has also completed coursework from UCLA in Emerging Technologies in Communication and Advanced Advertising Studies from the AAAA Institute.


Michele McDonough_150x150Michele McDonough

Michele resides in Southern California and has been in the direct selling industry (both party plan and MLM) for the last 32+ years. She has created new direct selling companies from concept to launch by personally recruiting the core group of distributors (founders).

She has worked with large corporations, start-ups and turnarounds/re-launches in all key areas of a direct selling/direct marketing business models. Also she has built companies in the initial stages in the areas of sales, marketing, PR, branding, training, operations and finance and also provides interim executive services to manage and execute projects. She designs and delivers programs and processes from strategy to concept to completion to drive business performance for long term growth and maximum ROI. Another area Michele delivers her unique talents is in developing global strategies and brand development/initiatives. Michele is also very active in the non-profit world and has been a board member with a national charity called Project Cuddle for 12 years. Michele has also been a BIG SISTER for BIG SISTER/BIG BROTHERS for 7 years and also holds a city council position within her local community!

To find out more about Michele, visit  www.mlmdivausa.com.


Gerry NehraGerry Nehra

Gerald P. Nehra of Muskegon, Michigan, is an Attorney at Law, licensed in the states of Michigan, New York, Colorado, and the US Federal Courts. A lawyer since 1970, his legal experience includes 8 years on the IBM Legal Staff, and 9 years as the Director of the Amway Corporation Legal Division. His private law practice (now Nehra & Waak, Attorneys at Law) was established in 1992 and exclusively serves the USA legal needs of direct selling companies worldwide.

Mr. Nehra has been associated with, and supported DSWA from the onset, and does the trademark legal work for the Alliance. He is a Supplier Member of the US Direct Selling Association, and has served on its Government Affairs Committee and Lawyers Council. He is a Support Member of the MLMIA and the newest member of its Hall of Fame.

He is a frequent speaker at direct selling seminars, and writes for industry publications. You are invited to visit his firm's website at www.mlmatty.com.


Mike Sheffield

Mike Sheffield

Mike Sheffield is Chairman and CEO of The Sheffield Group (www.sheffieldnet.com), a full-service direct sales consulting organization.  For over 25 years, the firm has specialized in turnkey launch programs for new MLM, party-plan and direct sales companies. The Sheffield Group also consults on new product development for existing enterprises, along with compensation plan overhaul, distributor recruitment, financial modeling, and overall business strategy.

Before founding his consulting firm, Mike Sheffield owned and sold two successful MLM companies. Today he heads a team of seasoned experts in every aspect of the industry, along with a full support staff.

As an acclaimed authority on starting and growing direct sales ventures, Mike Sheffield has spoken to a wide range of industry and academic audiences. He has been a guest speaker at the Schools of Business at Arizona State University, UC Berkley, University of Cincinnati, California Lutheran University, Anderson University, the University of Texas, El Paso (UTEP) and others.  He has also served as the MLM expert for Entrepreneur Magazine and a contributor to the Entrepreneur Magazine training manual on how to start a successful direct sales company.  Mike Sheffield is a Certified Management Consultant (CMC) and serves as Chairman Emeritus of the Multi Level Marketing International Association.


Jeff StroudJeff Stroud

Recognized as a progressive leader in the direct selling industry, Jeff Stroud has over ten years of experience in key C-Level positions including CEO, President, COO, and Board Member for successful party plan and network marketing companies.

Having twice raised private equity to launch pre-revenue start-ups and built new direct selling businesses completely from scratch, today Jeff specializes assisting entrepreneurs in direct selling make their vision become a reality.

Jeff is a featured speaker at the Direct Selling Association, UCLA and the Pepperdine University School of Business. He has outstanding communication skills, a mastery of cross-channel retailing and an instinctive ability to grow and lead a direct selling organization.

As founder and principal of JS Consulting, Jeff has worked with DSA suppliers, party plan and network marketing companies on a variety of initiatives including Pointburst Social Media, Peacock Alley Luxury Linens, MVP International, Kudos, Winnie and Kat, The Nick Chavez Company, and LyfeStart International.

Contact Jeff Stroud by email.