Chris spent four years in the USAF jumping out of airplanes. After he got out he became a broker for Merrill Lynch. After about a year, he realized that he didn’t want to be stuck in an office all day talking about somebody else’s money.
After Merrill, Chris got into the collection industry and did pretty well for myself. He worked from home for a few hours a day and make fantastic money. Although the industry had a way of making you feel “scummy”, it did have its upside. That is until the day his CEO called him and told him that he made too much money! Chris reminded him that he was in sales so he knew that his boss made 10 times as much as he was making.
“He went on about how he lived in a double wide when he was my age, and at that moment it hit me: ‘one day this guy is not going to want to pay me what I’m worth!’ I decided then that I wanted to work for myself so I opened C and J Professional Cleaning in 2004.”
C and J Professional Cleaning Services provides high quality commercial cleaning and janitorial services in Phoenix and throughout the Valley. When Chris is not working, he enjoys working out, riding my motorcycle and hanging out with my family.
Dean Katris owns and operates Power Promotions, LLC, a company that grew from a $300 investment (and no real clear plan to move the T’shirt inventory Dean got talked into), to now serving over 175 casinos and dozens of other companies across several industries – with branch offices in 5 states.
Power Promotions is an innovative promotional products distributor. Promotional products, also known as ad specialties, make up a nearly $17 billion dollar industry and are used by virtually every business in America. Why? Items like mugs, pens and t-shirts are memorable and provide a better cost per impression for advertisers than almost every major marketing effort like TV, magazines and the Internet.
Clearly a born entrepreneur, Dean exemplifies the idea that if you want something enough, and you are willing to give it your all, you can attain it. A Business Economics graduate of the University of California at Santa Barbara, Throughout his career, Dean has started and successfully operated several businesses in the apparel industry, as a real estate broker, as well as a custom home building corporation.
With his incredible business insight and passion for personal and professional development, Dean also is an expert leadership development trainer for U & Improved, with more than 15 years experience in the professional development industry, Dean has led thousands of individuals to unlock the thriving, successful leader within themselves and their organizations. Dean drives the message of “U the Leader” with heartfelt passion, delivering a life-changing experience to students who are willing to break through their barriers and who want to start living big.
Dean exhibits what he trains in his personal life as well, as a consistent, nurturing father and role model to his four children and family, related and extended. He maintains a balance in his personal and professional life, ensuring his multiple businesses are thriving while being a constant source of love and inspiration to his adoring children.
ABOUT THE LEADERSHIP LOWDOWN SERIES
The Leadership Lowdown was created to share the REAL story behind valley leaders’ rise to the top, and the truth about what it takes to TRULY succeed in life and business. Hear the raw stories of these leaders’ journeys…the pitfalls, the victories, and all of the heartaches and triumphs in between.
ABOUT YOUR HOST
Jodi Low is an accomplished corporate trainer, inspirational speaker, and the Founder and CEO of U & Improved. Jodi has trained thousands of entrepreneurs and executives on how to build a booming business, master a mindset for success, and achieve the lifestyle they desire through heart-fueled leadership.
Through U & Improved—an award-winning personal and professional leadership development company based in Scottsdale—Jodi has redefined traditional leadership training by creating a sustainable and actionable model that is personal, challenging and meaningful to each and every individual who enrolls in any of the two-and-a-half-day experiential training classes. She and her elite training team have advanced the charge in heart-based leadership
development and empower U & Improved graduates with knowledge, tools and awareness to immediately be more effective and responsive leaders at work, home and within their communities.
Among her many accomplishments as a Valley leader, Jodi launched a teen leadership program in 2014 to empower young adults to become more confident, motivated and focused stewards of our future. In 2016, she founded a non-profit arm of the company—the U & Improved Leadership Foundation—that makes the program more accessible to deserving teens.
Jodi has been recognized by industry publications and organizations for her work in leadership development and serves as a source of inspiration within the community. In 2015, she was honored as an “Outstanding Women in Business” by the Phoenix Business Journal and by the Phoenix Suns and National Bank of Arizona with the “Amazing Women” award. She has received both the prestigious “Diversity Leader of the Year” and the Scottsdale Chamber of Commerce’s “Sterling Award.” She was also awarded a Silver Stevie Award for Female Entrepreneur of the Year 2015 and was a finalist for the Junior League of Phoenix’s Valley Impact Award. Jodi is a devoted single parent who volunteers her time at her daughters’ school programs and with organizations such as Angel Mamas, where she’s served on the board for three years.