The BlueWater Team
As our client, you have direct access to our partners. Count on senior-level advice from professionals who have the experience and skills to address your most complex financial and operational matters.
Matt Miller is Managing Director of our Investment Banking and Merchant Banking practices. He has over 20 years of advisory and corporate experience in finance, mergers and acquisitions, and business development; including buy- and sell-side work for closely held and public middle-market companies.
Prior to joining BlueWater Partners in 2002, Mr. Miller held various business development positions with several privately and publicly held middle management companies, including Prairie Group, Illinova Energy Partners and Leggett & Platt. He earned his BGS from the University of Michigan and MBA in finance from Loyola University of Chicago.
He is currently an active member of the Association for Corporate Growth.
Ron Miller is the founder and a Managing Director of BlueWater Partners. He has more than 45 years of experience as an advisor to and senior manager and shareholder of middle market companies in a variety of industries. Mr. Miller has participated in more than 75 corporate finance transactions as an advisor, senior manager or shareholder.
Prior to founding BlueWater Partners in 2001, Mr. Miller was the President, CEO and shareholder of several privately held manufacturing and distribution companies with revenues under $100 million. He is currently a member of the Turnaround Management Association and board member of the Children’s Advocacy Center and two privately held companies. Ron was formerly Vice Chairman of the Child & Family Resource Council, Chairman of the Children’s Law Center and Chairman of Champions for Children. He has also served as a board member of Michigan’s Children and the American Cancer Society.
Jeff Jackson is a Managing Director with more than 25 years of experience in finance, sales, marketing and customer service operations, due diligence and post-merger integration, and Lean Six Sigma. He focuses on the financial and operational aspects of performance improvement, restructuring and turnaround engagements, as well as implementing the Entrepreneurial Operating System® (EOS®) for clients. Additionally, Mr. Jackson manages the strategic relationship between BlueWater Partners and Flow Consulting, providing clients with best in class expertise for a wide variety of performance improvement engagements.
Prior to joining BlueWater Partners in 2017, Mr. Jackson held senior management positions at several privately and publicly held companies including Texas Armament & Technology, Health & Safety Institute, Nokia, BellSouth Cellular and Solomon Brothers. He earned his BBA in Finance from Pace University and MBA in management from the University of Florida.
Dan Poortenga is a Director with more than 20 years of advisory and corporate experience in mergers and acquisitions and business development; including buy- and sell-side work for closely held middle-market companies.
Prior to joining BlueWater Partners in 2013, Mr. Poortenga held various advisory and business development positions with several privately and publicly held companies, including J.P. Morgan, The Charter Group, and John Widdicomb Company. He earned his BA from Calvin College, MBA from Suffolk University Sawyer Business School, and law degree from Suffolk University Law School. Mr. Poortenga is a member of the Massachusetts and Michigan Bar Associations.
He is a Trustee of the Grand Rapids Public Library Foundation Board and is currently Board Chair.
Steve Hughes is a Vice President with more than 5 years of experience in public accounting and consulting. He focuses on the financial aspects of investment banking, consulting, and merchant banking engagements.
Prior to joining BlueWater Partners in 2015, Mr. Hughes held various positions at Connelly GPM, Crowe Horwath LLP, Great Lakes Marine Group, and Modar. He earned his Bachelor of Business Administration in Accounting and Finance from Grand Valley State University.
Lauren Hayes is an Associate with more than 4 years of experience in corporate development, investor relations, and marketing. She focuses on the financial and strategic aspects of investment banking engagements.
Prior to joining BlueWater Partners in 2018, Ms. Hayes held various positions at Metaldyne Performance Group and American Axle & Manufacturing. She earned her Bachelor of Business Administration in Economics and International Business from Central Michigan University.
Mark Young has over 20 years of experience in manufacturing, supply chain and management consulting for several of the world’s Fortune 500 companies. He combines an energetic and personable style with strategic thinking, strong program management and facilitation skills to effectively lead companies through their lean transformation.
Mr. Young has developed training curriculum and facilitated workshops in a variety of strategic lean operational topics to build client resources’ facilitation and subject matter skills. He is a certified Six Sigma Black Belt from the Six Sigma Academy and earned his Lean Certification from Johnson Controls.
Tom Hughes has over 40 years of industry and consulting experience leading performance improvement initiatives. His openness, experience and quick wit build lasting relationships while effectively leading clients in the identification, scoping and delivery of high-value projects leveraging Lean Six Sigma and the breakthrough strategy.
Mr. Hughes served in the US Army Reserves as an Infantry Company First Sergeant, earned an Engineering Degree from General Motors Institute and an MBA from Central Michigan University. Tom is a certified Six Sigma Master Black Belt from Sigma Breakthrough Technologies Inc. (SBTI).
John Stewart has over 25 years of industry experience specializing in supply chain process re-engineering and project management, where he has delivered double-digit improvement to clients across their Supply Chain Management (SCM) processes.
Mr. Stewart’s broad SCM experience includes inventory planning, supply chain network design, cost and service analysis, order fulfillment, logistics planning and execution, distribution center design, trade compliance assessment and implementation of an outsourced dedicated fleet program. He earned a Master’s Degree in International Management from Thunderbird School of Global Management and a Bachelor’s Degree in Finance from the University of Illinois.
Rachel Chase is an experienced quality and operational excellence professional with 10 years of demonstrated results working in regulated manufacturing industries. She is experienced in Kaizen, lean process development, technical writing, structured problem solving and business process improvement. She effectively employs Lean Six Sigma principles to drive process standardization for clients.
She received a Bachelor of Arts in Biochemistry from Spring Arbor College, Executive Certificate of Business in Life Sciences from Indiana University, and is a Certified Quality Auditor (CQA), Certified Quality Engineer (CQE), Six Sigma Black Belt and Lean Green Belt.