Key Executives is pleased to announce The Top 25 CEOs of Austin for 2024. Home to entrepreneurs, startups, growing companies, and tech giants, Austin is consistently ranked as one of the best major cities for business. Known for its world-class talent pool, centralized location, and progressive regulatory environment, Austin stands out as an attractive hub for innovation and growth. With its collaborative business environment and diverse range of industries including technology, healthcare, manufacturing, and entertainment, Austin is an ideal setting for CEOs to succeed.

Among this year’s awardees, we have Fred Turner, Chief Executive Officer and Co-Founder of Curative, recognized for his instrumental role in addressing public health challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic. Turner's leadership has been pivotal in establishing Curative as a leading healthcare services company, providing testing and vaccine-administration resources across the United States. Another standout executive is Ashley Rogers, CEO of Sprinkles, renowned for her visionary leadership in the premium bakery industry. Under her guidance, Sprinkles has expanded its footprint coast to coast, offering a diverse range of baked-fresh daily products and pioneering innovative concepts like Cupcake ATMs. 

Lastly, we have Chris Hall, the CEO of Poppi, recognized for his dedication to driving innovation in the beverage industry. Hall's leadership has been instrumental in positioning Poppi as a top choice for healthier soda alternatives, offering consumers innovative and delicious prebiotic soda beverages.

The selection process for this year's awardees involved a methodical evaluation of their leadership prowess and contributions to their respective industries. Please join us in recognizing the achievements of The Top 25 CEOs of Austin for 2024.


1. Matt Pyatt
Chief Executive Officer, Arrive Logistics

Matt Pyatt is the Chief Executive Officer and Co-Founder of Arrive Logistics. Arrive Logistics is a multimodal transportation and technology company with over 1,700 employees, 6,000 customers, and 70,000 carriers in its network. As CEO, Pyatt leads a seasoned executive team in developing and implementing the strategic vision that drives the company's growth. Pyatt co-founded Arrive in 2014 alongside company President Eric Dunigan. Arrive is one of the fastest-growing technology and transportation companies in the nation.

Prior to his current position, Pyatt was an Account Executive at Command Transportation. Pyatt holds a degree in marketing and entrepreneurship from Miami University.


2. Brent Bellm
Chief Executive Officer, BigCommerce

Brent Bellm is the Chief Executive Officer of BigCommerce, an open SaaS and composable e-commerce platform for brands and retailers of all sizes to build, innovate and grow their businesses online. Since joining the company, Bellm has implemented a disruptive innovation strategy, transforming the company from a small business-focused solution to an open SaaS platform serving mid-market and large enterprise customers.

A retail and e-commerce veteran of 20 years, Bellm has served in a variety of executive leadership positions at companies in the industry. Prior to joining BigCommerce, Bellm served as Chief Operating Officer and President at HomeAway during a period in which the company went public. Bellm also spent more than nine years serving in a variety of executive leadership positions at PayPal and eBay, including global head of Product Management at PayPal and CEO of PayPal Europe. Bellm holds a bachelor’s degree in international relations and economics from Stanford University and an MBA from Harvard Business School.


3. Jacqueline Hinman
Chief Executive Officer, Atlas

Jacqueline Hinman is the Chief Executive Officer of Atlas, a project delivery management firm that provides comprehensive support in managing large-scale infrastructure improvement programs. She is recognized for her strategic leadership and operational discipline focused on value creation. She focuses on driving customer-centric growth, business model innovation, and executing mergers and acquisitions. Hinman has an extensive background in global consulting, engineering, and construction, with experience in sectors including business services, environmental, infrastructure, energy, and industrials.

Hinman has 35 years of industry experience, including serving for nearly 20 years with Fortune 500 engineering company CH2M, most recently as Chairman and CEO prior to its acquisition in 2017. She also served as President of several CH2M divisions. For six years, Hinman was with Tyco Earth Tech Division as Senior Vice President. She began her career at CH2M before rejoining the company in 1996. Hinman serves as a member of the Board of Directors of Dow and International Paper. She holds a degree in civil engineering from Penn State University and attended the Stanford University Executive Program.


4. Heather Brunner
Chairwoman and Chief Executive Officer, WP Engine

Heather Brunner is Chairwoman and Chief Executive Officer of WP Engine, a global technology company. WP Engine includes several brands within the WordPress community, such as Flywheel, Local, Advanced Custom Fields, and Genesis. 

Brunner has led the expansion of WP Engine from an Austin start-up to a global brand with more than 1,200 team members around the world. The company now has locations in Austin, Brisbane, Limerick, London, Omaha, and Krakow, serving millions of customers in more than 150 countries. With 30 years of experience in technology, Brunner has generated billions in enterprise value, delivered growth, and led business strategy for privately funded new ventures and Fortune 500 companies. She also serves on the board of directors for Camden Property Trust, an S&P 500 company. She holds a bachelor’s degree in international economics from Trinity University.


5. Fred Turner
Chief Executive Officer and Co-Founder, Curative

Fred Turner is the Chief Executive Officer and Co-Founder of Curative. Curative is a health care services company that gained prominence during the COVID-19 pandemic by providing testing and vaccine-administration resources. Founded in January 2020, Curative initially focused on sepsis testing but quickly pivoted to address the urgent need for COVID-19 testing. The company has provided more than 32 million tests and two million vaccines across thousands of locations in over 40 states. 

Before joining Curative, Turner was a Chief Executive Officer at Shield Bio and before that a Chief Executive Officer at TL Biolabs Corp. Earlier in his career he worked with Turner Land Biolabs Limited as a CEO. Turner attended the University of Oxford.


6. Peter Smith
President and Chief Executive Officer, Aviat Networks

As Aviat’s President and Chief Executive Officer, Peter Smith leads the advancement of the company’s financial and operational performance. Aviat is a provider of wireless transport and access solutions. The company has sold more than one million systems in 170 countries worldwide to communications service providers and private network operators including state and local government, utility, federal government and defense organizations.

Smith has more than 25 years of leadership experience in business management. He most recently served as Senior Vice President, US Windows and Canada for Jeld-Wen. Prior to Jeld-Wen, he served as President of Polypore International’s Transportation and Industrial segment and oversaw transformative initiatives that helped prepare the former public company for sale to the Asahi Kasei Group. Previously, he served as Chief Executive Officer and a director of Voltaix Inc., until its sale to Air Liquide.

Earlier in his career, Smith held various executive leadership positions at Fortune 100 and Fortune 500 companies, including Cooper Industries, Dover Knowles Electronics and Honeywell Specialty Materials. He holds a bachelor’s degree in material engineering and a PhD in material science and engineering from Rutgers University, as well as an MBA from Arizona State University.


7. Bill Daniel
Chief Executive Officer, AWL

Bill Daniel is the Chief Executive Officer of AWL. AWL is an insurance distribution technology business focused on personal lines in the United States. It offers information and guidance for insurance buyers. Daniel is responsible for overall leadership and direction of the company, including strategy and operations. 

Prior to joining AWL in 2008, Daniel was the President and CEO of Surgient, a data-center virtualization management software company. Previously, Daniel held Senior Vice President roles at Vignette, a publicly traded developer of content management software. He also founded several software companies, including Wallop, Datis Corp. and Mozart Systems, and has held sales positions at Oracle and other Silicon Valley technology companies. Daniel holds a bachelor’s degree in engineering from Dartmouth College and an MBA from the Haas School of Business at the University of California at Berkeley.


8. Pat Goepel
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Asure Software

Pat Goepel is the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Asure Software. Asure Software provides cloud-based Human Capital Management software solutions that assist organizations in streamlining their HCM processes. Asure's suite of HCM solutions includes HR, payroll, time and attendance, benefits administration, payroll tax management, and talent management. Pat has more than 30 years of experience in the human resources industry. 

Pat serves on the boards of SafeGuard World International and Clearfield, and as the CEO of APPD Investments. Before joining Asure Software, he was president and CEO of Fidelity Investment’s HR Services Division, President and CEO of Advantec, and Executive Vice President at Ceridian. Goepel graduated from Marquette University.


9. Matthew Ryan
Chief Executive Officer, iFLY Indoor Skydiving

Matthew Ryan is the Chief Executive Officer of iFLY Indoor Skydiving. iFLY specializes in designing, manufacturing, selling, and operating wind tunnel systems for indoor skydiving. The company has provided indoor skydiving experiences to more than 8 million people in a dozen countries and at sea since launching the modern vertical wind tunnel industry in 1998. iFLY has more than 72 facilities operating worldwide with 32 wholly-owned in the US. 

With 30 years of experience, Ryan joined iFLY Indoor Skydiving after serving as Head of Manufacturing at KATERRA and previously as President at CEVA Logistics. Earlier in his career he worked with Flextronics International as an EVP of WW operations and logistics.


10. Dru Armstrong
Chief Executive Officer, Affinipay

Dru Armstrong is the Chief Executive Officer of Affinipay, bringing over 17 years of experience in consumer and product technology development and management. AffiniPay is a provider of practice management software and online payments for professionals serving legal, accounting, architectural, engineering, and construction firms. Armstrong creates strong customer experiences while fueling technology growth and market expansions, leading with innovation, diversity and inclusion, and verticalized software.

Before joining Affinipay, Armstrong was a CEO at Grace Hill, LLC and before that a co-founder and CEO at Lily Pod. Earlier in her career she worked with The Boston Consulting Group as a project leader. Armstrong began her career in the legal environment and holds her JD and MBA from the University of Chicago.


11. Ashley Rogers
Chief Executive Officer, Sprinkles

Ashley Rogers began her professional career 10 years ago. Today, she is the Chief Executive Officer of Sprinkles. Rogers first got her start in 2014 as a co-founder and owner at Buff Bake.

Sprinkles provides premium, baked-fresh daily cupcakes, cakes, candy and cookies for events and celebrations. Since 2005, Sprinkles has garnered attention for their unique flavors, on-demand Cupcake ATMs, online ordering and expanding footprint of bakeries coast to coast. The company also caters to various dietary needs with vegan, gluten-free, and sugar-free options. Today, the brand proudly leverages its platform to support the empowerment of women.


12. Chris Hall
Chief Executive Officer, Poppi

Chris Hall is the Chief Executive Officer of Poppi, a functional soda brand known for its range of prebiotic soda beverages. As a seasoned leadership executive, Hall brings extensive experience to his role at Poppi. He is responsible for setting the overall strategic direction, building team culture and driving sustainable growth at the company.

Before being named Poppi CEO in 2022, Hall spent 15 years of his career at Talking Rain Beverage Company, most recently serving as Chief Executive Officer. Hall graduated from Central Washington University with an undergraduate degree in business, marketing, and HR.


13. Bryan Kenna
Chief Executive Officer, Quickstart

Bryan Kenna is currently the Chief Executive Officer of QuickStart, an E-learning business focused on IT workforce development. QuickStart helps job-seekers break into IT fields and upskill existing IT professionals by providing personalized and multi-modal certification training programs. The company partners with universities, certification providers, and employers to build the IT workforce.

Kenna was previously the Chief Marketing Officer at C2 Education, a test prep, tutoring, and college counseling business with 190 locations in 15 states. Prior to C2 Education, he held several executive leadership roles at Ashworth College, a portfolio of five online school brands serving more than 60 thousand students each year. Kenna was part of a Sterling Partners-recruited team that turned around the failing business, driving it to profitability that ultimately resulted in a sale to Penn Foster. 

Kenna has worked across various industries as a former Strategy Consultant with The Boston Consulting Group and as a CPA with PricewaterhouseCoopers. He holds a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Oglethorpe University and an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University.


14. Keith Melnick
Chief Executive Officer, The Zebra

Keith Melnick is the Chief Executive Officer of The Zebra, bringing 28 years of experience to his role. The Zebra is an independent insurance comparison site, featuring a real-time quote comparison tool for consumers to identify insurance companies with the coverage, service level, and pricing to suit their unique needs. The Zebra aims to simplify the insurance shopping process by offering transparency and convenience to consumers.

Before joining The Zebra, Melnick was a President at KAYAK and before that a Manager at Boston Consulting Group. Earlier in his career he worked with American Airlines as a Team Leader. Melnick graduated from the USC Marshall School of Business with an MBA and from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign with an undergraduate degree in mechanical engineering.


15. Kathy Slowinski
Chief Executive Officer, Trilogy

Kathy Slowinski is the Chief Executive Officer of Trilogy. Founded in 1989, Trilogy has worked exclusively with Global 1000 companies. The company provides technology-powered business services to deliver transformational economic value for its customers. Slowinski is a seasoned executive with over 20 years of experience in building and leading enterprise software companies. With a focus on customer-centricity, she is committed to delivering tailored solutions that address her clients’ needs and challenges.

Before joining Trilogy, Slowinski was a Chief Product and Revenue Officer at CircleUp and before that a Vice President of Product at Earlier in her career she worked with Newcastle University Sport as an IT manager. Slowinski holds an MBA, master’s degrees in marketing and information technology, and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Newcastle as well as an undergraduate degree in business from Northern Illinois University. 


16. Adam Sullivan
President and Chief Executive Officer, Core Scientific

As President and Chief Executive Officer of Core Scientific, Inc. Adam Sullivan has more than a decade of experience in financial services, with a focus on investment banking in the digital assets and infrastructure space. Core Scientific is one of the largest bitcoin miners and hosting solutions providers for bitcoin mining in North America. The company employs its own large fleet of computers to earn bitcoin for its own account and provide hosting services for large bitcoin mining customers at our seven operational data centers in Georgia, Kentucky, North Carolina, North Dakota and Texas.

Sullivan’s expertise spans strategy development, corporate finance and M&A. Prior to joining Core as President in 2023, Sullivan served as a Managing Director and Head of Digital Assets and Infrastructure at XMS Capital Partners. In his role at XMS, Sullivan oversaw more than $5 billion of transactions, including Core Scientific’s business combination with Power and Digital Infrastructure Acquisition Corp. XPDI in 2021. He previously served at Indian Wells Capital Management and M&T Bank. Sullivan received his bachelor’s degree in financial economics from the University of Rochester.


17. CJ Bouchard
President and Chief Executive Officer, Excel Fitness

CJ Bouchard is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Excel Fitness. Excel Fitness is a franchisee of Planet Fitness based in the Austin area and has been a portfolio company of Olympus Capital Partners since 2022. It operates over 140 Planet Fitness locations across Texas, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Georgia, Arkansas, Missouri, North Carolina, Utah, and Virginia and builds over 10 new locations each year.

Bouchard brings 31 years of experience to his role at Excel Fitness. He first got his start in 1993 as a President at Optimal Results Personal Training and Nutrition, before eventually rising to Partner at CR Eastern General Contracting, his most recent position prior to joining Excel Fitness.


18. Rick Froehlich
President and Chief Executive Officer, ClearDATA

Rick Froehlich is the President and Chief Executive Officer of ClearDATA. ClearDATA is a provider of managed cloud and defense services for the healthcare industry, enabled by the CyberHealth SaaS platform. Its solutions operationalize compliance, privacy and security for the healthcare ecosystem in the public clouds. Froehlich joined ClearDATA in 2022, bringing decades of leadership experience across the tech market. His experience at companies like Rackspace, Dell, Oracle and Earthlink allowed him to work in high-impact organizations. 

Before joining ClearDATA, Froehlich was a CRO at Outseer and before that a CRO at Lifesize. Earlier in his career he worked with Procter and Gamble as a Senior Manager of Finance. Froehlich earned a bachelor’s degree at Principia College and an MBA from the Olin School of Business at Washington University.


19. Fred Martin
Chief Executive Officer, Subjectwell

Fred Martin is the Chief Executive Officer of Subjectwell. SubjectWell, an audience engagement platform for healthcare, aims to raise awareness of clinical research among the general population, offering patients more choices and accessibility to innovative treatment options.

Martin brings more than 25 years of experience in the healthcare industry to the executive team at SubjectWell. Most recently, he served as COO for Medrio, where multiple products launched under his purview led to five years of double-digit growth. Prior to that, Martin was VP of Product Management at Sigmacare, where he led the company to a successful exit. Earlier in his career at PointClickCare and Premier Inc. Healthcare, he built product teams and designed go-to-market strategies to capitalize on opportunities in the long-term care, hospital, and health system spaces. 

Martin holds a bachelor’s degree in communications from the University of Colorado Boulder, a human resources MILR from Cornell University, and an MBA in marketing from the Stephen M. Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan.


20. Troy Pike
Chief Executive Officer, Volusion

Troy Pike is the Chief Executive Officer of Volusion, an e-commerce software company that provides a platform for businesses to create and manage online stores. Founded in 1999, the company offers a variety of tools and services including website design, shopping cart functionality, SEO, and marketing features to help businesses build and grow their online presence, whether large or small. Pike is a senior executive with experience across several industries in pioneering strategic initiatives, building and aligning teams, and delivering profitable growth.

Before joining Volusion, Pike was a group COO at ZT Corporate and before that a President and CEO at Parker School Uniforms. Earlier in his career he worked with North American Chemical Company as a Regional Sales Manager. Pike graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia with an MBA in marketing.


21. Misha Tsidulko
Chief Executive Officer, Hearth

Misha Tsidulko is the Chief Executive Officer of Hearth. Hearth is a company that offers financial technology solutions specifically designed for home improvement contractors. It provides tools and services that help contractors offer financing options to their customers, enabling them to close more sales and make home improvement projects more affordable for homeowners. Hearth's platform includes features like loan pre-qualification, credit checks, personalized financing plans, and digital payment collection, aiming to streamline the financing process for both contractors and their clients. 

Tsidulko brings 11 years of experience to her current role. Before joining Hearth, Tsidulko was a CEO at and before that a VP, Growth at Brilliant Associates Inc.. Earlier in his career he worked with Suzy, formerly Crowdtap, as an Associate of Strategic Relationships. Tsidulko graduated from William and Mary with an undergraduate degree in economics and political philosophy.


22. Jeff Ball
Chief Executive Officer, Visio Lending

Jeff Ball is the Chief Executive Officer of Visio Lending. Founded in 2012 and headquartered in Austin, Visio Lending is a private lender that specializes in providing loans to residential real estate investors. The company provides services designed to help investors build and manage their rental property portfolios by providing flexible financing options, competitive interest rates, and efficient loan processing. Ball is responsible for setting Visio's overall strategy and direction. Prior to forming Visio Lending, he founded Visio's predecessor company, Econohomes. 

Ball previously served as the Global Head of Semiconductor Investment Banking at JP Morgan, serving clients including Intel and Texas Instruments. Before JP Morgan, Ball was a Corporate Securities Attorney at Gray Cary Ware and Freidenrich. Ball received his JD and MBA from Santa Clara University. He holds an undergraduate degree in economics and theology from Georgetown University.


23. Jeff Allyn
Chief Executive Officer, Onward

Jeff Allyn is the Chief Executive Officer of Onward. Onward is a platform that delivers scalable, low-carbon energy systems. Allyn has over 28 years of experience in various industries, including energy, wireless, location data, sports betting, FinTech, IoT, satellite, SaaS, and day trading. He is a growth executive who builds teams and creates strategies to accelerate new and existing revenue streams. 

Before joining Onward, Allyn was a VP of Operations at Simpler Trading and before that a CRO at eL-ev8. Earlier in his career he worked with Locaid Technologies as a Director of Location Products and Direct Sales.


24. James Rebesco
Chief Executive Officer, Striveworks

James Rebesco is the Chief Executive Officer of Striveworks. Striveworks specializes in operational data science and machine learning for national security and other highly regulated spaces, focusing on developing user-friendly platforms and tools that enable data scientists and analysts to deploy machine learning models and perform advanced analytics efficiently. Striveworks’ flagship machine learning operations platform, Chariot, is purpose-built to enable engineers and subject matter experts to transform their data into actionable insights.

Rebesco brings 15 years of experience to his current role. He was previously a Partner at Virtu Financial, his most recent position prior to joining Striveworks. Rebesco graduated from Northwestern University with a PhD in neuroscience and from Caltech with an undergraduate degree in physics.


25. Chris Doyle
President and Chief Executive Officer, Billd

Chris Doyle is an entrepreneur and business leader with extensive construction industry experience and a record of launching startups. He is the President, Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Billd, a payment solution for the construction industry that helps contractors and suppliers grow their businesses. Billd aims to help contractors and suppliers manage their businesses by addressing cash flow challenges and providing access to working capital.

Before joining Billd, Doyle was a Chief Commercial Officer at Dividend Finance and before that a Program Director of Solar Operations at the Institute for Building Technology and Safety. Earlier in his career he worked with Royce Builders as a Project Manager and Sales Manager. Doyle graduated from Rice University with an MBA in management and from Texas A&M University with an undergraduate degree in economics and political science.