Learn About Our Story & Our Team
About CertaPro Painters®
In 1992, CertaPro Painters®, Ltd. began with the vision of making residential and commercial painting services easier and more convenient for homeowners and business owners. From the beginning, our promise has been that of certainty, aiming to reassure customers of our quality and expertise. While today we are the largest residential painting contractor in North America, our locally owned and operated franchises take pride in bringing personalized service to customers in every region, allowing them to focus on what matters most.
Certa ProPainters, Ltd. is a subsidiary of FirstService Brands, the leading North American brand in property services. Made up of extensive franchise networks and company-owned operations including California Closets, Floor Coverings International, Paul Davis Restoration, Pillar To Post Home Inspectors, and TLS. FirstService Brands has been built with careful intention to provide exceptional value for its customers.
FirstService Brands is a subsidiary of FirstService Corporation, (NASDAQ: FSV, TSX: FSV) a North American leader in the essential property services sector. Further information may be obtained at www.firstservice.com.
I am constantly amazed by how whatever I need to learn in regard to growing my franchise is right out in front of me as soon as I realize that I need to learn it.
- Dave Strahl | CertaPro® of Chagrin Falls, OH
Executive Team Bios
Read our Executive Team Bios below to find out more about the leaders that will support you as you grow and scale your business as a CertaPro® owner.
Michael Stone | CEO and President
Mike Stone was appointed President in March 2015. Previously, Mr. Stone served as Vice President of Operations from January 2013 until his appointment as President. Mr. Stone also served as Regional Vice President from 2007 until 2013. Mr. Stone has been with CertaPro® since March 2003, first as a General Manager in Development and later as a General Manager in Operations. Prior to that, Mr. Stone was a Residential Sales Associate for a CertaPro Painters® franchisee for four years.
Bruce Schmidt | Outgoing Chief Brand Officer
Bruce was appointed Chief Brand Officer in October 2016. He has over thirty-five years experience in marketing and brand development, with CertaPro® being the fifth organization in consumer/business services in which he has served as chief marketing officer. His previous franchise experience was as Chief Marketing Officer for AAMCO Transmissions, Inc. & Total Car Care and prior to that, Vice President of Marketing for Nutri/System Weight Loss Centers. Earlier in his career, he served in brand management positions for several Fortune 500 organizations. Bruce has an MBA from the University of South Carolina and a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from the University of Wisconsin at Green Bay.
Bill Palliser | Executive Vice President of Operations
Mr. Palliser joined CertaPro Painters® in September 2021 as Executive Vice President of Operations. Previously, Mr. Palliser spent 18 years with Sherwin Williams. Over his 18 years, he has held numerous positions in Store Management, Commercial and Residential Sales, as well as District Management. Mr. Palliser spent five years on their National Account team managing the CertaPro relationship across North America, developing strategies to strengthen the partnership between the two companies. Most recently, he was the National Accounts Sales Director, where he led a team offering innovative solutions for strategic clients in the residential, multi-family, commercial, hospitality, and healthcare market segments.
Rich Volp | Vice President of Business Solutions
Mr. Volp was appointed Vice President of Business Solutions in October 2019, with responsibilities for leading the Information Technology team. Mr. Volp joined CertaPro Painters® in 2007 as a Development General Manager, a position he held until becoming an Operations General Manager in January 2009. In 2012, Mr. Volp became Regional Director of the Southeast and MidAtlantic; Mr. Volp became Regional Vice President in 2014 for these regions. During January of 2018 Mr. Volp moved from the Operations Team to the Leadership & Development Team assuming the role of Leadership Director.
Valerie Kinney | Vice President of Marketing
Valerie was appointed Vice President of Marketing in March 2015, having joined CertaPro® as Regional Marketing Director in September 2014. Previously, Valerie was with Auntie Anne’s Inc., a franchisor located in Lancaster, PA from June 2003 through September 2014 as Director of Communications (March 2006-September 2014), PR Manager (November 2004-March 2006) and Public Relations Coordinator (June 2003-November 2004).
Rich Hoffmann | Senior Vice President of Leadership and Strategy
Rich has been in Franchising for over 20 years. He has been in his current role—Senior Vice President of Leadership and Strategy—since March 2021. He works with team leaders, direct supervisors, and program managers to develop their leadership development skills, strategy and tactics, and to synthesize cross team programs which serve our organizational vision and mission. Rich first joined CertaPro in October 2008 as an Operations General Manager. In January 2013, he became responsible for the development and deployment of CertaPro University Online, and then in January 2017 he was appointed Vice President of Leadership and Development, where he was responsible for developing the strategy and team to design and deliver our online and instructor-led learning for our franchise community and corporate team members.
Prior to joining CertaPro Painters, Rich worked in account management, recruiting, training, sales, and he even served as a Franchise Manager himself for several years.
Yana Duman | Vice President of Brand Strategy
Yana has been in her current position, Vice President of Brand Strategy since February 2022. She has been with CertaPro Painters® for nearly a decade, holding positions as Director of Brand Experience & Insights, Director of Regional Marketing, Senior Regional Marketing Manager, and Regional Marketing Manager of Canada & Northeast US. A few highlights from Yana’s time with the organization include developing and launching a new mail ordering portal, developing an integrated NPS & Online Review survey system, facilitating co-op mass media decisions, driving a customer retention strategy re-design, writing content for direct mail and developing Marketing Automation campaigns.
Prior to joining CertaPro Painters®, Yana served as National Franchise Manager for Haines Direct, where she assessed business practices, identified key problem areas and implemented strategic improvements. Yana also has a background in business development and account management, working in this area for nearly 5 years with various franchise and non-franchised clients in outside organizations.
David Proulx | Vice President of Operations
In November 2021, David was appointed Vice President of Operations. He originally joined CertaPro in 2013 as a General Manager and went on to serve as Director of Startups, helping the owners build a solid and scalable foundation. He became a Director of Strategic Operations in 2018, then Regional Vice President in 2020. Prior to joining CertaPro Painters®, David was a Project Manager with Paul Davis, and before this, he ran a franchise from 2001-2003 with College Pro while attending university. He graduated in 2004 and joined College Pro full time.
David has been an Examiner/professional level coach since 2009 who maintains the integrity of the Skill Development Program through field certifications. In this role, he promotes learning within the organization and is a champion of lifelong learning. He considers the Skill Development Program to be a cornerstone to how we lead people and ourselves.
Dawn Perry | Chief Brand Officer
Dawn Perry joined CertaPro in August 2022 as the Chief Brand Officer. Previously Ms. Perry held two roles over 12 years at Anywhere Real Estate as Senior Vice President Cross Brand Marketing and Chief Marketing Officer at ERA Real Estate. Ms. Perry also successfully ran her own Little Gym franchise for four years. She has held marketing management positions with Avis Budget Car Rental Group, Scholastic Book Club, and Time Inc., providing her with more than 30 years of marketing experience and a proven track record of driving lead generation through effective programs across multiple platforms and audiences.
Ty Ramsey | Vice President of Operations and Development
Ty has been in franchising for more than 20 years. In January 2022, Ty was appointed Vice President of Operations and Development. He originally joined CertaPro in 2012 as a General Manager, later becoming Director of Resales and Vice President of Development. Previously, Ty was with College Pro Painters from 2002 to 2012: as a franchisee for two years, then as a General Manager and, later, as a Vice President. He has also been an Examiner in the CertaPro leadership Skill Development Program since 2006.
Corporate has built a very trusting and collaborative environment between franchisees which is invaluable to our local learning and development.
- David Barron | CertaPro® of Ottawa, ON
Meet Our Franchise Development Team
Read our Franchise Development Team Bios below to find out more about the members you will work with while discovering the opportunity with CertaPro Painters®.
Bruce Sadowsky | General Manager of Franchise Development
Bruce has more than 10 years of experience in the franchise industry, having experience as both a franchisee and an employee of the franchisor. He started with CertaPro Painters® franchise owner in in 2007, and then joined the CertaPro® corporate staff in 2009, where he served as General Manager in Franchisee Development. As a GM, Bruce mentored new franchisees through the beginning phases of their businesses as they transitioned into business ownership—mainly from corporate roles. Since 2015, Bruce has worked with prospective business owners in his role as General Manager of Franchise Development – working with franchisee candidates that are looking at either starting a new market or purchasing an existing business. Bruce is a graduate of New York Chiropractic College, where he earned his Doctor of Chiropractic degree. He and his wife, Ann, live in Sudbury, Massachusetts, with their three children.
Richard Feimster | Senior Recruiter
Richard was in the insurance world for 30 years and has experience with business ownership as he owned a claims adjustment firm. He has been supporting prospective CertaPro® franchise owners find their way into the business since his move to CertaPro® in 2012. He is also a proud graduate of Penn State University and currently resides just outside of Philadelphia, PA.
David Barron | General Manager, Franchise Mergers & Acquisitions and Resale
David joined CertaPro Painters® as a Franchisee in Ottawa at the end of 2011. He built the business to $2.1 million over the course of 7 years, leading to a successful resale of the business in 2018. David now shares his direct experience and knowledge with our franchisees, helping them to build their succession plan, to then prepare business for sale and finally to support them through the selling process to close. He has been on the corporate team since March 2021.
Prior to CertaPro, David worked for many years in executive leadership with technology growth companies with an extensive background in marketing, finance, data management, sales and sales management. David received his Honors Business Administration degree from the Ivey Business at Western University with a focus on Marketing and Finance and a minor in Mathematics. He later attended Harvard Business School and received a Certificate in Negotiation Mastery. David serves as the Ottawa Alumni Chapter President for the Ivey Business School and enjoys family life, baseball, cycling and Nordic skiing.
Greg Salzano | General Manager of Franchise Development
Greg has worked in franchise and business development since 2002. He joined CertaPro Painters® in September 2021 as General Manager of Franchise Recruiting. Prior to this, he served as Director of Franchise Development for Philly Pretzel Factory for 7 years. Leading up to that, he served as Franchise Development Manager for the Western US division of FullSpeed Automotive, handled franchise development for Amada Senior Care, and did some independent franchise consulting. Greg was also the Vice President of Business Development for Sign Biz, Inc for over 9 years.
Greg belongs to several professional organizations, including FranServe, Business Alliance, Inc., and International Franchise Professionals Group. He received his Bachelor of Arts degree from University of Michigan.
Brennan Conway | General Manager of Franchise Recruiting
Brennan joined CertaPro Painters® as General Manager of Franchise Recruiting in June 2020 and has been in the franchising industry since 2008. Prior to CertaPro he was a Franchise Operations Manager with GYMGUYZ, a Franchise Consultant with Reliance Business Consultants, and a Market Development Manager with AAMCO Transmissions. Brennan is skilled in new business development and strategic planning. He spent the first part of his career helping new franchisees open their businesses on the Real Estate and Operations side, and later moved to franchise recruiting to help individuals realize their goal of owning their own business.
Adam Biedenbender | Vice President of Franchise Business Development
Adam Biedenbender joined CertaPro Painters® in October 2022 with almost two decades of experience in franchise development. Most recently, Adam worked in franchise development for Lift Brands (Snap Fitness, 9round Boxing, FitStop, and Fitness On Demand), where he implemented franchising and real estate strategy, lead creation, and resales programs. Before that, he held leadership positions at companies like Primo Hoagies, Papa Murphy’s International, and Smashburger. Adam is also a Certified Franchise Executive, as well as a member of the International Council of Shopping Centers.