Meet the Executives

Ulysses (Malick) Smith

Chairman

Malick became Chairman of Fisher Yoshida International in 2014. He brings more than 30 years of engagement in mineral exploration to include diamond mining, upstream hydrocarbon development and the trade of crude oil. Malick is a consultant to various natural mineral exploration projects and infrastructure development projects in the Middle East and North, West and Central Africa. Much of his work is centered on structured finance for these large scale projects. He serves in a variety of roles including Director, Board member, Vice President, and consultant to many oil and gas companies throughout Africa and the Middle East, as well as, in the U.S.. He was trained in Antwerp, Belgium as a sorter and valuer of natural diamond gems. In this capacity, he operates globally and has traveled extensively for tender sales, specialty goods and general natural rough diamond trading. Malick is conversant in French, English, and several local African dialects. He was born in Tennessee, received a Bachelor’s degree in Accounting from the University of Tennessee at Knoxville, is married and is the father of two children.

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Ulysses
(Malick) Smith

Chairman

Dr. Beth Fisher-Yoshida

CEO/ President

Beth is a certified clinical sociologist, master facilitator, educator, mediator and executive coach. Beth founded Fisher Yoshida International in 1995 in order to partner with clients to develop positive change initiatives that will improve the function and quality of their organizational life. Beth does this through fostering change that results in improved communication by refining her client’s core negotiation skills and facilitates productivity across the organization. Clients have included global organizations in the Fortune 100, private sector, nonprofit, government sectors, military, security forces, communities, school districts and academic institutions. She takes a systemic approach to working on complex issues with multiple stakeholders. She uses facilitated, interdisciplinary collaborative processes proven over her 30 years of experience in the areas of change management, leadership development, conflict resolution management systems, negotiation and mediation, and intercultural communication. Beth is Academic Director and Faculty of the Master of Science in Negotiation and Conflict Resolution and Co-Chair of the Advanced Consortium for Cooperation, Conflict and Complexity (AC4) at the Earth Institute, both at Columbia University. She serves on the Boards of the CMM Institute for Personal and Social Evolution, Human Dignity and Humiliation Studies, and the International Advisory Board of Sunkhronos Institute. Currently based in New Jersey, Beth has lived and worked in Japan for 13 years and continues to earn her frequent flyer mileage traveling around the world.

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Dr. Beth
Fisher-Yoshida

CEO/ President

Mindy Fisher

Chief Operating Officer

Mindy has a diverse business background in sales and operations. She’s worked in consumer goods, finance, energy, healthcare and real estate. Mindy brings skills to the global network of Fisher Yoshida International and streamlines multiple aspects of business operations. Mindy has a strong focus on client relationship and financial management. She has managed branding, marketing and sales efforts in multinational businesses globally. She plays a strong role in executive leadership. In addition to her management roles within organizations, Mindy is a certified nutritionist and nationally certified and licensed massage therapist. Her educational studies have focused on numerous aspects of health and business. She has lived and worked in New York, New Jersey and Israel. Mindy is sensitive to cultural diversity with her two children, the eldest living and working in Israel and youngest living and working in New Jersey.

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Mindy
Fisher

Chief Operating Officer

Ria Yoshida

Director of Communications

Ria specializes in team building, organizational development, executive coaching and instructional design. Ria received her master’s degree in Social and Organizational Psychology from Columbia University. She continues her education in evidence-based executive coaching through Fielding Graduate University. Ria enhances her training and facilitation work with a strong business focus influenced by her multicultural background of Japan and America. She is fluent in Japanese and English. She resides in Brooklyn, NY, enjoys rock climbing and biking.

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Ria
Yoshida

Director of Communications

FYI Associates work together with clients to build on and enhance what needs to grow and identify and modify what needs to change.

Meet the Associates

Dr. Robert M. Anderson

Associate

Robert has more than 25 years’ experience in international human resources development, designing and delivering active-learning workshops adapted to local contexts and learning styles. Robert brings a rich background of experiences in a variety of corporate, nonprofit and governmental organizations to his work. He has significant experience in the finance and education industries. While his native language is English, he is fluent and mistaken for native in French, Portuguese, and Spanish. Robert is a certified practitioner of The Human Element, a methodology emphasizing self-awareness and authenticity in relationships. He completed his Ed.D. in Adult Learning.

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Dr. Robert
M. Anderson

Associate

Donald Arnold

Associate

Donald has over 42 years managing major oil and gas EPIC projects worldwide. He has extensive experience in engineering and construction of onshore and offshore pipelines on all types of deep water and shallow water platforms and marine facilities. Donald has demonstrated strong HSE and QA/QC Management, EPIC Project Management, Offshore Installation/Operations Management, and Offshore Construction Vessel Design, Build, and Maintenance Management capabilities throughout his career. He is a specialist in Operation Management of Offshore Barges, Heavy Lift Rigging, Pipeline and Cable Installations, Fixed and Floating Platform Installations, Upgrade of Large Cranes, SURF Design and Installation, Subsea Tie-ins, Facility Engineering, Project Management and Fabrication Manager

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Donald
Arnold

Associate

Robert Brass

Associate

Robert Brass is the quintessential eclectic, having a career that has included award-winning filmmaking, to successful investment banking, having raised hundreds of millions of dollars in funding since 2000. Robert is an effective communicator with the ability to clarify complex concepts and transform them into powerful presentations. Above all, Mr. Brass is a veteran problem solver with 30 years of achievements working as an independent investment banker, marketing consultant, writer, producer, director, and real estate professional. Robert holds an AA from the University of South Florida and a BA from the University of Iowa. He is co-founder of The Circle of Life Food Bank now called the Kosher Food Bank.

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Robert
Brass

Associate

Steve Byle

Associate

Steve Byle has more than 24 years of experience in engineering, project and executive level management. He founded Wave Tech after leaving as CTO & large shareholder of Dockwise that he helped drive to over $500M in revenue and $200M in EBITDA as an offshore energy engineering, construction, transportation and installation company owning 23 ships, including the two largest transport and installation vessels in the world. Previously he founded and acted as CEO of Offshore Kinematics, an oil and gas equipment design, engineering, construction and installation company, which sold for $47M in 2007. Steve holds a BSE from the University of Michigan, were he graduated summa cum laude as an Angell Scholar. He further holds a J.D. from the University of Texas. He presently serves on the Board of Advisors, U. Michigan College of Engineering, has 9 patents issued and pending with many in daily use in the energy industry. He has lived and worked around the world, and speaks fluent English, Spanish and Chinese.

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Steve
Byle

Associate

Julio Cortes

Associate

Julio is a trainer and consultant who began his career as a headhunter in Tokyo training candidates to get ready for new positions. He later taught Japanese executives effective communication and negotiation skills. He used these negotiation and leadership skills in managing projects in Europe and South America, and also creating new business in the Philippines. Julio has worked with such companies as Bridgestone, Pepsi, Jollibee, amongst many others. He works in English, Japanese and Spanish, and has dedicated his life to finding simple yet powerful ways to assist people in becoming more effective and fulfilled. Julio graduated from UCLA in East Asian Studies. He is passionate about mind and body wellness and studies meditation and martial arts. A lifelong learner, he holds numerous teaching certifications and lives to grow and share his knowledge.

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Julio
Cortes

Associate

Coby Crawford

Associate

Coby is an icon in the natural gas industry. He joined Wave Tech along with Mr. Maddox from his former position as CTO of Audubon Engineering, which he also co-founded. Coby holds a B.S.E. in Chemical Engineering from Texas Tech University and an M.B.A. from Houston Baptist University. He is presently a Director of the Board for the Gas Process Suppliers Assn (GPSA) as well as a Member of the Board SPE, U.S. Engineering Subcommittee (Ex-Officio) in charge of testing standards. He is a Professional Engineer in many states: TX, OK, CO, ND, CA, MI, KY, and UT.

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Coby
Crawford

Associate

Rodney Erb

Associate

Rodney is a 15-year veteran of the medical device industry, having served in extensive high level sales and account development roles, as well as, managing multi-state sales teams. His healthcare expertise is informed not only by his medical technology career and hospital systems knowledge, but also by his training and experience as a Registered Nurse. Rodney’s talent for value-development coupled with his expertise in negotiation and decision-making has generated multimillions of dollars for the organizations he has represented. Rodney is passionate about possibility, and his approach is focused on building trust, transparency and sustainable outcomes during the negotiation process. As an adjunct lecturer, Rodney teaches courses in health care negotiations (Columbia University) and professional Selling (Keene State College). Rodney holds a MBA from Norwich University, Executive Certificates in Advanced Negotiations from the University of Notre Dame and a MS in Negotiation and Conflict Resolution from Columbia University.

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Rodney
Erb

Associate

Damian Fray

Associate

Damion is currently Principal at Taktikus, a private strategy consulting company that operates its business through two distinct services: the Healthcare Consulting Division and the Energy & Commodities Division. Damion also serves as COO at one of his portfolio companies, OTC Mobile Stores. Previously, Damion served as Director of Health Exchange Sales at Healthfirst, the largest NY HMO with over 1M members. At Healthfirst, Damion focused on improving healthcare in communities in need and delivering the best outcomes for his organization. Damion began his career as an executive recruiter with Chadick & Ellig, a retainer based executive search firm. During his career there he handled research for the firm, and managed a portfolio of operations, diversity and technology related searches. His client list included Dell Computers, Microsoft and Pepsi. Damion received his BS in Political Science, Summa Cum Laude from Mercy College. He was awarded the Ronald E. McNair Scholarship and served as the Editor- In -Chief of the college newspaper. Damion is a Manchester United soccer fan and plays in a soccer league during his time off.

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Damian
Fray

Associate

Jack Jolis

Associate

Jack owns and operates his own Belgian-registered PNG Rough Diamond Consultancy, which is involved in the marketing of and investment in diamonds and diamond properties, specializing in rough productions. He is also experienced in marketing and purchasing of polished diamonds and collections. Jack conducts tender sales for producers and third parties. His clients include rough diamond producers, independent miners, NGOs, investors, and private end-users. Additionally, he has been a speaker on rough diamonds at conferences in Tel Aviv, Johannesburg and Vancouver, and has written on the subject for the WALL STREET JOURNAL and (US) NATIONAL REVIEW. In 2000, Jack was invited to appear as an expert witness before a US Congressional Committee looking into the international rough diamond trade.

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Jack
Jolis

Associate

Haruka Kan

Associate

Haruka is the lead coordinator for clients in Japan and manages the Tokyo branch of Fisher Yoshida International. Haruka has been a personal trainer and individual coach in the healing health industry for over 20 years. She majored in Office Administration at Hokkaido Bunnrika Junior College Liberal Arts Secretarial Course. Haruka enjoys cooking and creating recipes.

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Haruka
Kan

Associate

Brian Maddox

Associate

Brian has 18 years of diverse experience, primarily process design, engineering, construction and installation in natural gas. He is president of Wave Tech and joined from his previous position as CEO of Audubon Engineering, which he started together with Mr. Coby Crawford. He grew the company to over $300M revenue and 1200 employees as one of the premier natural gas engineering, design, construction and in stallation firms in the US. He is a former Project Manager at Brown & Root. Brian holds a B.S.E. in Chemical Engineering from Texas Tech and a B.S. in Chemistry from McMurry University. He is a member of the Gas Process Supplier Assn (GPSA) and a Board Member of the Construction Institute of Technology.
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Brian
Maddox

Associate

Barry Sommer

Associate

Barry is a licensed educational psychologist and marriage and family therapist. Barry engages with businesses, health organizations and schools through training, consultation, teaching and facilitation. He received advanced degrees in human development, psychology, and education. Barry directed the Collaborative Leadership Institute and is now the Director of school and community development for his local school district in California. In addition, Barry has a thriving private practice.

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Barry
Sommer

Associate

Michael Uwaechie

Associate

Michael is an attorney and ED at Weircapacity Ltd. where he heads the firm’s governance, institutional reform and Public-Private Partnership (PPP) department. Michael has advised on key infrastructure projects, particularly in the West African sub-region. Before joining Weircapacity, he worked with the Permanent Mission of Nigeria to the United Nations as adviser to the GA Economic & Finance Committee. Michael graduated Magna Cum Laude with a Masters in Banking, Corporate & Finance Law from Fordham University Law School, NY. He also served as adjunct faculty there on a fellowship. He obtained his LL.B from Ambrose Alli University, Nigeria, graduating with Second Class (Hons.) Upper Division. Michael has been admitted to the Nigerian Bar and the New York Bar. He is a member of the Nigerian Bar Association, the New York City County Lawyers Association and the American Bar Association. He obtained numerous certificates in corporate governance, compliance and public-private partnerships. He was appointed an international mediator by the International Mediation Institute, South Africa, based on his expertise in ADR using the PULSE model.
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Michael
Uwaechie

Associate

Laura Vladimirova

Associate

Laura is a birth doula, childbirth educator, lactation counselor and birth photographer with an extensive business background in marketing, communications and social media. She brings her deep knowledge of women’s issues and intuitive communication to the FYI team. She found her passion for supporting women during a trip to the Dominican Republic to work with Haitian immigrants. After spending time in a maternity and children’s hospital, she realized that women were strong beyond measure and that reminding them of this was deeply gratifying. She fosters and facilitates clear communication between patients and doctors before and during emotionally heightened times and educates pregnant women. She is the recipient of two community grants centered on community building and a published writer.

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Laura
Vladimirova

Associate

Dr. Austin Yekpabo

Associate

Austin is an organizational leader and systems thinker by training and experience. He offers seasoned mentoring and coaching services honed by years of combining business and teaching experience in the analysis, innovative design and successful implementation of knowledge enabled systems. He has consulted for governments, institutions and companies in USA, Africa and the Middle East. Austin is on the faculty of George Mason University, Colorado State University, and University of Liverpool in the UK. He has taught and trained in the fields of: Transformational Change, Entrepreneurial Leadership, Knowledge Management, Organizational Behavior, and Decision Support Systems.

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Dr. Austin
Yekpabo

Associate

Aya Yoshida

Associate

Aya supports Fisher Yoshida International Marketing and Communication efforts. She helps assist in executive research and development. She has a degree in communication and journalism from Brooklyn College. She enjoys fitness and is a beloved owner of 2 canine friends, Murph and Baxter.
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Aya
Yoshida

Associate

Meet the Advisory Board

Joseph B. Wiley

Advisory Board

Joseph has 42 years of combined public and private sector environmental planning and management experience, thirty of which have included management direction and marketing for environmental engineering firms. He holds a BA in Government from Harvard University and a Masters of Public Affairs from Princeton University. He is proficient in both French and Spanish and has lived and worked in France and South America. Joseph’s strength lies in providing planning, direction, and management for major environmental projects and corporate plans. He identifies regulatory and technical constraints and support needed to implement difficult projects successfully, and supervises staff and special consultants to achieve his clients’ goals. He identifies new markets, and researches and selects innovative technologies for local, national, and international settings. Joseph has an extensive network of governmental and private contacts in the fields of solid waste, hazardous waste, remediation, Brownfields redevelopment, and alternative energy systems. He maintains close contacts with regulatory officials and governmental decision makers in the New York Metropolitan area.

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Joseph
B. Wiley

Associate

Our Buzz

I have known and worked with Beth for about 18 years now, in my capacity as a Learning and Development Officer in the Learning, Development and Human Resources Division at the United Nations Secretariat. Our office supports change and learning and development initiatives for departments and units across the Secretariat and we often call on Beth to work with these teams. She is very good at connecting with people and gaining their trust to guide them through processes that can be complex and difficult to navigate. Beth has developed many learning programs for us and has conducted training and team interventions in several of our duty stations around the world, which reflects how respectfully and successfully she communicates across cultural differences. We plan on continuing to work with Beth and utilize her talents because we feel assured of the high quality and care our clients will receive.

Carina Stern

I’ve known Beth for over 10 years. During this time, I’ve had the pleasure of working with her not only as a participant in a management development course that she facilitated but also as a corporate client utilizing her executive coaching services. As a corporate training facilitator, what struck me immediately as a participant was how calming yet assertive, professional yet personal, and most importantly probing yet respectful Beth was in her approach. It created an environment that felt safe for exploring which ultimately resulted in genuine growth and learning by each of us in the course. As an executive coach, I’ve retained Beth to work with corporate colleagues and referred her to external business partners who needed the 1:1 attention, particularly with senior executives who were successful yet were held back by various behaviours that impeded their full potential. Again, her style and approach created safe relationships that led to true personal growth, which ultimately made a difference in their professional growth. I would recommend Beth for any of her areas of expertise – facilitation, executive coaching, conflict resolution, management development – without hesitation.

Elaine Chin

I have known Beth Fisher-Yoshida for more than 25 years and worked with her in various situations. In 1998 when I was training director for Citigroup Japan, I hired her to design and deliver communication training with a focus on resolving conflicts. It was so well received that my successor continued to employ her. Beth is easy and stimulating to work with. Training participants liked and recommended her sessions to their colleagues. I have also collaborated with her to co-facilitate workshops since 2002, and she has always demonstrated the same qualities of reliability, creativity, and cultural sensitivity with good results for the participants.

Adair Linn Nagata

I was familiar with Beth’s work from a previous engagement. I called her in to work with one of the cross-functional teams at a highly successful pharmaceutical company where I was Senior Director of Organizational Development. They were having significant interpersonal issues that were affecting their work productivity, quality and work climate. I was impressed in the way she worked with the team to assist in their identification of the root causes of their issues and guiding them on moving forward constructively.

Ashley Miles

Beth has shared her considerable expertise around change management, communication skills and leadership development with our League members, many of whom are executive directors at orchestras from around the country. Beth’s sense of responsibility to her work; her sincere dedication to helping individuals and organizations thrive; her ability to create effective learning environments for diverse groups of people; and not least, her deep reservoir of intelligence, all make her a special individual.

Jessica Balboni