It’s a Matter of People

Connections that Really Matter

robin black

Robin Black, Founder & CEO

Caring. Committed. Consultative.

Robin Black is a true believer in having a life of significance. Robin is the founder and CEO of Connects Marketing Group. In this role, she manages corporate relationships and the sales consultant teams. For more than 25 years, she has brought innovation and creativity to project management. She has a professional and effervescent personality, as well as a deep respect for clear communication, best practices and continuous process improvement.

Working with some of the top service firms, she enjoys helping her clients accelerate their success.

Robin’s specialty is working with her clients in a collaborative and frictionless way.

Her background includes B2B business development, lead generation, sales enablement, customer retention and expansion and strategic planning.

Favorite quote: “Life isn’t about how to survive the storm, but how to dance in the rain.” – Unknown

The bottom line:  Connections made through Conversations Matter.

Lisa June 2022

Lisa Schulte, General Manager

Energetic. Intelligent. Effervescent.

Lisa loves to talk, and people love to talk with Lisa.  The most common phrase heard in our office is, “Everybody loves Lisa.”  In fact, rumor has it, that a major network has a pilot in the works about her life story.

With over 20 years of project management and customer service, she brings organization and communication skills to Connects Marketing Group. Prior to working with Connects, Lisa won the Presidents Award for Inside Sales Achievement from Tyco Electronics.

Favorite quote: “Enjoy the ride.

The bottom line:  Connections made through Laughter Matter.


Kristin Carlson, Sales Development Representative

Intuitive. Compassionate. Authentic.

Kristin has more than 20 years of experience in sales and marketing, account management, and customer relations, as well as group facilitation skills. All of these attributes are advantages for our clients.

She is professional, insightful, and personable while utilizing her solid sales experience, effective communication style, and leadership skills to empower and inspire others to fulfill their passions and purposes in life.

Kristin has worked in many industries, and is always diligent, accessible, proactive, and authentic. She speaks the truth with compassion.

When she isn’t hard at work, Kristin enjoys the outdoors and in her time off can be found on a ski slope, hiking, biking, kayaking, water skiing, scuba diving, or even horseback riding.

Favorite quote: “Be the change you want to see in the world.”– Mahatma Gandhi

The bottom line: Connections made through Thoughtful Communication Matter.


Aristana Firethorne, Sales Development Representative

Integrity. Optimism. Compassion.

Aristana is well organized, intuitive, and persistent in follow through when it comes to reaching her goals, as well as her clients’.  With over 20 years experience in the Natural Products and Health industry as a manufacturer, retailer, and wholesaler, she brings expertise with Small Business Management.

She supports our Sales and Marketing team by doing client outreach, coordination, and business development.  She brings to her role over 13 years of professional B2B Marketing experience in a wide variety of sectors through her work with Connects Marketing Group as a Project Manager and Lead Generator.

She lives by her guiding principals of integrity, compassion, optimism, service, and clear communication, and spends her free time involved with family, community, volunteering, creating art, working with plants and animals and dancing.

She graduated from California Polytechnic University, San Luis Obispo with a BS in Environmental and Systematic Biology with a concentration in Wildlife and Botany.

Favorite quote: “Today’s great oak is just yesterday’s nut that held its ground.”
– anonymous

The bottom line: Connections made through Diligent Communication Matter.


Gretchen Cole, Sales Development Representative

Collaboration. Creativity. Curiosity.

Gretchen is a business development expert with an entrepreneurial spirit; her   primary focus is getting fledgling businesses off the ground.  She has more than twenty years experience in customer service, sales, marketing and PR in the high tech, hospitality, medical, publishing and travel industries.  Gretchen has an innate ability to get people talking, enabling her to zero in on clients’ needs, and she is tenacious about digging up every last bit of information relevant to market research projects.  Gretchen is also a stickler for detail, especially when it comes to messaging, and is the go-to person at CMG for copy-editing.

Gretchen also has an extensive and successful background in fundraising and devotes much of her spare time to volunteer work.  She’s done everything from costume design in regional theater to historic building preservation, in addition to organizing countless benefits and auctions.  She served as Treasurer and President of the Bayview Community Hall Board of Directors and held a position on the Meerkerk Gardens Board of Directors.

Gretchen’s “Three C’s” have been the cornerstone of her endeavors for many years and are summed up best by saying that she is always curious, seeking alternative approaches via collaboration to come up with the most creative solution possible.

Favorite quote: “Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new.” – Albert Einstein

The bottom line:  Connections made through Collaboration Matter.


Jessica Lee, Sales Development Representative

Canty. Centered. Charismatic.

Jessica enjoys the outdoors and time with family and friends. She is a dedicated mother of 2 and Navy wife. She currently lives in Hawaii with her adorable family.

After spending over eight years working in customer service, Jessica knows what truly drives conversations and grabs people’s attention. She understands that conversations should be about connecting on a human level and  the importance of clear communication. But she doesn’t stop there, follow through is key in building trust.

Jessica holds Sociology and Organizational Leadership degrees from Arizona State University.

Favorite quote: “My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style.” – Maya Angelou

The bottom line: Connections made through Words Matter.