meet the team

Get to know more about the dynamic co-hosts of The Makeover, the experts and the small businesses participating.

Meet the team

Co-hosts

Ruth Ellen Elinski

Ruth Ellen Elinski

The Makeover Co-host and SBDC Consultant

Ruth Ellen Elinski, the SBDC Business Analyst based on the Yavapai College Verde Valley campus in Clarkdale, serves all the communities in Verde Valley, including Cottonwood, Camp Verde and Sedona. A former small business owner, Ruth Ellen has training in accounting, management, and public affairs, and is certified in Profit Mastery.
Jaro Horvath

Jaro Horvath

The Makeover Co-host and Project Leader

Jaro is an SBDC Consultant and the Small Business Makeover Project Lead who is an entrepreneur, a global business professional who has worked and consulted with small business owners, Shark Tank entrepreneurs, Fortune 10 executives, governments and non-profit organizations. Small businesses are the heartbeat of America’s economy, so Jaro brings his passion and expertise in project leadership and strategy creation/execution to the Small Business Makeover to make sure we keep the Yavapai small business dreams alive.

Meet the team

featured experts

Karen Eads

Karen Eads

The Makeover SBDC Lead Consultant

Karen Eads is a Business Analyst based on the Yavapai College Prescott Valley campus, has more than 30 years of experience in process improvement, project management, business planning, and customer service with large and small business units. She is certified in Growth Wheel, is a certified Quickbooks professional, and a financial management resource.

Jeri Denniston

Jeri Denniston

Director of SBDC at the Yavapai College

Jeri Denniston is the SBDC Director based on the Yavapai College Prescott Valley campus, and she brings more than 30 years of experience in strategic management, business planning, and online and social media marketing. A certified Small Business Advisor, she holds certifications in strategic management, Growth Wheel, and LivePlan.

Marie Platowski-Beals

Marie Platowski-Beals

Business Analyst

Marie Platowski-Beals, a business Analyst based on the Prescott Valley campus, recently relocated from Chicago’s North Shore after taking a 40,000 sq ft vacant office building, two weeks after 911 and developing it into the largest privately Executive Office Center in the US. She specializes in business development, and strategic planning with an emphasis on the power of networking. She is certified in LivePlan

Katherine Anderson

Katherine Anderson

Programs Specialist

Katherine Anderson, is the Programs Specialist for the Regional Economic
Development Center and Small Business Development Center. She provides a
bridge between education and  employment, including Yavapai College Job Fairs, Future Leaders Town Halls, Lunch N’ Learns, SBDC workshops, and more.

Meet the team

Makeover Selection Committee

City of Chino Valley

City of Chino Valley

Economic Development

Prescott Valley

Prescott Valley

Chamber of Commerce

Prescott

Prescott

Chamber of Commerce

City of Sedona

City of Sedona

Economic Development

City of Cottonwood

City of Cottonwood

Economic Development

small business makeover

The Makeover

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Coach's Corner

Very helpful

“Thank you SO MUCH for all your help.  You really came through in our time of need and anxiety.”  – Sedona Cathedral Highway B&B and Spa: Kathy and Larry Kaeckel

we are so grateful

“SBDC has been instrumental in the development of our new business! They’ve helped us with so many things: from networking to production, policy, and procedure development, to website development, and more. We are so grateful for their expert assistance! We feel our new business is off to a great, healthy start because of them.” – Oak Creek Sheet Metal and TAC Fabrication, 2020 Success Award Winners: Kim and Todd Bean

Extemely grateful

“I cannot say enough good things about my SBDC counselors, Jeri Denniston and Ruth Ellen Elinski. They have bent over backwards to assist me in small tasks up to what seemed insurmountable to me. They reach out and remind me if I am falling behind in where I should be for the growth of the business. They are always willing to do research on topics I find myself overwhelmed by and without the time to investigate. They are always professional and concerned. I have found them incredible approachable, supportive and excited for the success of my business. I am extremely grateful for their mentorship.” – LaserGirl Skincare LLC, 2020 SBDC Success Award Winner: Anita Marcus