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Photo of Ray Toler
Ray Toler

In the late 90s, I joined a rapidly growing biotech in Silicon Valley. It was one of the most rewarding times in my career. There was a vibrant energy throughout the company, a sense of purpose. At our peak rate of growth, we added roughly one employee per day for three consecutive years.

My colleagues were experts in their respective fields. I learned more about systems administration in a five minute hallway conversation than I did from full-day workshops. The energy, the pace, and the people made me want to be better every week.

As my career has progressed, I have been extraordinarily fortunate to continue working with highly intelligent and motivated people, and now have the benefit of experience in broad variety of areas. This has allowed me to give back in new and exciting ways, motivating and leading others, as well as helping them identify opportunities and avoid missteps.

I thrive on helping people and companies solve problems, organize teams, develop talent, and build fun, goal-oriented cultures. Contact me and let’s talk about how I might be able to help your organization.

Innovation-Driven Change Leader

Ray's current resume in PDF format.
PDF

I’m a proven, effective leader of IT, marketing, and communications organizations with over 25 years of progressive experience in high-growth and turnaround environments. Thriving as a change agent and innovation champion, I orchestrate transformative business strategy through data-driven decisions, servant leadership, and vivid storytelling. My unique combination of technical, artistic, and analytical skills, interests, and education results in highly creative problem solving approaches.

I love Excel, writing and recording music, scuba, Skyrim, Minecraft, and reading.

Core Competencies

Business & Technology Strategy | Product & Brand Development | Corporate Communications | Mentoring & Coaching | Process Improvement | Business Intelligence | Technology Infrastructure Development | Digitalization | IT Governance | Budgeting, Financial Management & Cost Control | Market Analysis | Talent Development | Jargon Translation

Professional Experience

HTRI

Vice President, Information Technology & Marketing (2014-2017)
Director, Marketing & Corporate Services 2010-2014
Manager, Marketing & Enterprise Applications 2009-2010
Manager, Marketing & Communications 2009
(Software Development, R&D, Professional Services)

Led information technology, marketing communications, and event production departments (CIO/CMO equivalent). Corporate officer reporting to CEO. Responsible for global corporate communications and brand management strategy. Key member of business and product development teams.

Information Technology

  • Led enterprise-wide initiative to improve business processes, integrate functions, strengthen fiscal controls, and enable business intelligence, reporting, and analytics. Created mock-ups of possible information dashboards fed from ERP / CRM systems, along with anticipated user experience narratives to help illustrate value to stakeholders.
  • Championed architecture revisions and virtualization of enterprise servers, significantly increasing stability and redundancy; established defined disaster recovery guidelines, procedures, and metrics. Developed improved data security requirements for research labs and facilities resulting in zero downtime due to malware after implementation.
  • Envisioned, initiated, and led architecture, development, and implementation of Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) and Customer Relationship Management (CRM) systems. Engaged stakeholders and facilitated cross-departmental process changes resulting in drastic reduction of data entry errors and reporting redundancy.
  • Established and grew Enterprise Applications group, introducing computer science discipline to company’s software development efforts for both internal and commercial product development.
  • Reduced parts inventory 80% and improved desktop provisioning time 85% by standardizing operating systems, install images, user personas and hardware platforms.
  • Key member of design team for new construction, including single and multi-story office buildings, dining center, and training/conference facility with comprehensive A/V requirements.
  • Implemented VOIP/SIP system, reducing operational costs by over 60% and facilitating tighter integration of branch offices and teleworkers with unified communications platform.

Marketing

  • Key member of business development team that negotiated strategic alliance with Fortune 100 company resulting in IP transfer valued in the hundreds of millions and an improved competitive position for both organizations.
  • Led brand development and roll-out planning for multiple new products, software, services, and alliances.
  • Improved collaborative content development processes to maximize reuse of assets and ensure coherent messaging. Initiated implementation of marketing automation and digital asset management systems, including digitization of photo and document archives dating back to 1962 and development of self-service employee access portals.
  • Consulted with software development teams to develop new ways of improving user experience (UX). One example project included producing baseball card decks with user personas that software developers could use to facilitate discussion. Led creation of user back stories to give depth and clarity and help developers internalize customer needs.
  • Led website overhaul including direct links between content management system (CMS) and ERP/CRM data to automate publishing and facilitate better customer access to products.
  • Oversaw planning, contract negotiation, and production of customer conferences and events; locations included the United States, China, South Korea, Japan, Southeast Asia, India, Germany, South Africa, Australia, and Russia. Established new corporate travel guidelines to optimize business continuity, employee productivity, and fiscal controls.

Derse, Inc.

Experiential Marketing Producer (2008)
(Trade Show / Event Design & Production)

Led the successful planning, project management, and execution of experiential exhibits, installations, and events for high-profile brands. Responsible for managing all phases from pre-sale estimation and budgeting to post-show measurement and analysis. Selected vendors and negotiated pricing and contract terms. Provided creative services including seed concept generation, copy writing, content generation, design, and others as needed.

Example projects included

  • Initial blue-sky concept development for a next-generation solutions showcase and executive briefing center at a pharmaceutical/medical device company headquarters. Included integrated messaging customized to specific visitor actions, real-time location tracking, analytics, and metrics.
  • Pre-show communications campaign, booth experiential display, and post-show metrics analysis for a diagnostic imaging company.
  • Visitor engagement experience and trade show traffic generator for a major biotech.
  • Development of a “4d Theater” for a major pharmaceutical product release.
  • Message refinement and booth visitor survey creation for a leading biopharmaceutical.

Quinsep

Owner / Principal (2003-2008, Present)
(Consulting, Coaching, & Creative Services)

Provide project design, process improvement, change management, and managerial consulting, as well as personal and professional coaching and mentoring. Led and advised client teams. Provided creative direction and services including marketing communications, audio/video production, music composition, corporate and brand identity, and collateral design.

Example projects included

  • Internal process audit of customer data entry procedures. Company had twice as many redundant data entry points as it had estimated. Various technology and process improvements were identified and a plan drafted which led to single data repositories for the entire company.
  • Time management coaching to both executives and staff showing the benefit of focus and minimization of unneeded interruptions. Client reported improved productivity and happier culture after putting recommendations into effect.

Incyte

Sr. Systems Administrator / Intranet Webmaster 1999-2003
Sr. Information Science Engineer 1997-1999
(Biotech / Genomics)

Established and led multi-departmental team to assess needs and develop intranet sites. Taught internal classes in HTML, CSS, and related web development technologies. Managed selection and implementation of enterprise software including search engines, groupware, discussion forums, distance learning and collaborative tools. Worked with Vice President of Human Resources to develop telework policies.

Developed improved end-user support and provisioning procedures including standardized install images, pre-defining typical user types for software loads, and building relationships with local vendors to ensure rapid deployment of computer hardware in a high-growth, multi-platform environment. Led reduction in new employee setup from five days to four hours.

Education

Master of Business Administration (MBA)
Global Leadership, University of Houston 2007
Dean’s award for academic excellence

Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA)
Theatre, George Mason University 1990
With honors

Recent Volunteer Service

Navasota / Grimes County Chamber of Commerce
Board of Directors (2014 – 2016)