Steven ThompsonChief Executive Officer
The culture at Zilis starts at the top with CEO and founder, Steven Thompson. After earning a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting from the University of Memphis, Steven has gone on to build teams of over 250,000 people in more than 40 countries. With over two decades in the wellness and Direct Sales industries, he has the experience to lead Zilis into the future.
Mentoring and leadership development are a cornerstone of Mr. Thompson’s philosophy. He was recently voted as one of the top 40 Mentors in the world in a survey completed by over 100,000 participants. In addition, Steven works directly with state and federal lawmakers on the creation of the next great agricultural economy in America – hemp. Along with his business endeavors, Steven is a member of the Young President’s Organization and serves on the boards of multiple local and national nonprofits.
Zilis is building a nationwide movement under his leadership. Unlike most CEOs, you will rarely find Steven behind the desk. His passion for people radiates, which is why he spends the lion’s share of his time in the field. Over the coming years, Zilis intends to expand globally in rapid fashion, sharing the Ultra brand with every person our Ambassadors can reach, and paying it forward to millions of children.
Angie holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Education (graduated with honors) from the University of North Texas. She was first introduced to the Direct Sales industry in the 90’s. Since that time Angie has worked side-by-side with Steven to make a global impact by improving people’s lives with better health and stronger financial security. She possesses over two decades of experience working in both the corporate and field sides of the industry fence. Her expertise spans multiple areas of the business such as events, human resources, Ambassador support, and much more.
When not working alongside her Zilis family, you’ll find Angie spending time keeping up with their three lively children.
Yosief GhirmaiVice President of Accounting and International Finance
Yosief holds a Bachelor of Business Administration with an accounting emphasis from Saint Louis University, and a Master’s in Business Administration from the University of Missouri.
Yosief has over 22 years of experience in internal and external auditing, both in the U.S. and internationally. He has worked for Public Accounting and Corporate Internal Audit organizations at several Fortune 100 companies and his experience crosses many industries and domains, including aerospace and defense, telecommunications, oil and gas, banking, multi-level marketing, and manufacturing.
Yosief holds several certifications including Certification in Risk Management Assurance, Certified Internal Controls Auditor, and Earned Value Management System Level I & II Qualification. He is also a Six Sigma specialist.
Joy BeckermanDIRECTOR OF REGULATORY & LEGAL AFFAIRS
An internationally renowned hemp law and regulation scholar, Joy is an expert witness and seasoned faculty of credit-bearing hemp continuing legal education programs. She has been leading the emerging hemp industries for over a quarter of a century and is the Vice President of Federal Lobbying of the U.S. Hemp Roundtable on behalf of Zilis, as well as a hemp industry Lifetime Achievement Award recipient.
After owning the first hemp store in New York in the early 1990’s, Joy commenced an extensive dual career in compliance and complex civil litigation legal support, supporting some of the West Coast’s most distinguished attorneys; and she has worked with award-winning dietary supplement Multi-Level Marketing companies for as long as she has been involved in hemp.
Joy’s vast professional and hemp experience well serves her role as Zilis’ Director of Regulatory & Legal Affairs. Leading and navigating the emerging hemp extract industry are two of Joy’s greatest passions.
Wayne CliteDIRECTOR OF PROCESS IMPROVEMENT
Wayne holds a Bachelor of Science in Biology/Chemistry (Pre-Med) from the University of Georgia, Southwestern. He is an honors graduate of Christian Brothers University with a Master of Science in Engineering Management and author of his thesis in "Development and Deployment of The Japanese Quality System in American Manufacturing".
Wayne has earned numerous awards and certifications during his long career, including Toyota Lean Sensei, ASQ Certified Quality Engineer, ASQ Certified Quality Manager/Operations Excellence, ASQ, Certified Six Sigma Black Belt, ASQ Quality Auditor, Certified Lean Six Sigma Master Black Belt, and Certified OSHA Trainer.
Wayne is currently the Director of Process Improvement at Zilis and has recently led several strategic projects that have contributed to Zilis’ rapid growth within the last six months. He is considered a subject matter expert in process improvement and is currently working toward certification as Project Management Professional.
Gabriel Ettenson, MS, PTSENIOR INNOVATION STRATEGIST
Gabriel Ettenson, MS, PT holds a Master's degree in Physical Therapy from Columbia University. He was a founding member and President of one of the first CBD companies to ever exist in the United States, Europe, Australia and Japan and therefore played a key role in the building of the global CBD industry we see today. Throughout Gabriel's professional career, he has been driven by one thing; the desire to bring forth new, innovative, and scientifically supported approaches to health and healing.
As Zilis' Senior Innovation Specialist, Gabriel is responsible for bringing together his extensive understanding of the human body, the hemp industry, and his passion to innovate so that he can assure Zilis's continued status as a global market leader and industry pioneer.
Jason Leach, CFADIRECTOR OF FINANCE
Jason holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Organizational Behavior from Yale University. He also earned Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation from the CFA Institute in 2003. He has directed numerous efforts in both entrepreneurship and markets and is widely published on markets, including his book on the 2008 Credit Crisis and aftermath entitled Sleepwalking Toward a Precipice in 2013.
Over the last 20 years, Jason has worked for such prestigious firms as Novington Capital, JBL Wealth Advisory, Southwest Securities, Roth Capital, Dabney Flanagan, and Gruntal & Company.
As the Director of Finance at Zilis, Jason is responsible for the overall financial direction for the company. His duties include financial analysis and company forecasting, managing company analytics, and helping to implement new, innovative strategies and managing Zilis’ current and future investments.
Shannon TolandDIRECTOR OF OPERATIONS
Shannon holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology and a Master of Arts degree in Dispute Resolution from Southern Methodist University. Shannon’s skills in management and attention to detail make her uniquely suited to fill the role of Zilis’ Director of Operations. She is responsible for the overall office management of the company, presiding over Ambassador support, coordinating events, and managing inventory. Shannon also currently serves as Human Resources liaison. Before joining Zilis, she spent 10 years in the dental insurance field managing sales and service teams; developing and teaching training and workflow programs; and authoring procedural manuals. Shannon earned Team Member of the Year Award in her previous position in 2016. She lists her greatest sources of pride as her family and the honor of belonging to an organization like Zilis, which continues to change lives every day.
Marielle Weintraub, PhDDIRECTOR OF SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT
Marielle holds a M.S. and Ph.D. in Behavioral Neuroscience from Texas Christian University. Dr. Weintraub is widely regarded as one of the world’s leading experts in hemp and cannabinoid science. Prior to joining Zilis, Marielle was the Strategic Business Development Director of the Hemp Initiative at Eurofins Food Integrity and Innovation (formerly Covance Food Solutions). In this role, she introduced the hemp industry and their needs for valid and reliable testing to Covance (2016) and continued to drive development of hemp-specific testing and standards.
Marielle is very active in many dietary supplement and hemp industry trade associations, including her role as the current President of the US Hemp Authority, a member of the US Hemp Round table, American Herbal Products Association, and the United Natural Products Alliance. Marielle works closely with executives, key management and other members of the Science and Research, Compliance, Product Development and Technology teams to fulfill the mission and vision of the Zilis brand.
Andreas WolfEUROPEAN EXT. COUNSEL
Andreas Wolf has more than 20 years of experience in the direct sales and wellness industries. He also has extensive international and domestic financial expertise, having studied law in Germany and the United States. Andreas specializes in advising Zilis on strategic initiatives and investments. His expansive expertise includes international launch and expansion planning as well as optimizing key operational aspects.
His oversight of European expansion will position the company for global influence in the marketplace.
Andreas will oversee Zilis’ international product approvals and permits along with product importation requirements. His proven experience in international business will catapult Zilis onto the global stage.