Keith is the current CEO of Smart State, LLC and has been a resident of the Research Triangle Park area since 1998. He graduated from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University in 1983 and began his career as a Supervisor for the textile giant Burlington Industries (which later became Highland Industries), working his way up to Plant Manager. In 1994 he became the President/CEO of the Brenlin Group, a manufacturing conglomerate with over 2,500 employees. Companies included White Hat Ventures (education management), Hayes Brake and Hayes Disc Brakes (motorcycle, construction, off road vehicle & bicycle brake systems), LXD (liquid crystal display manufacturing), SMT (sheet metal fabrication), SSP (screen printing), Brennan Leathers (leather manufacturing), Hamlin Steel (automotive stamping), Paumier (tool & die manufacturing), Prior Remanufacturing (remanufactured brakes). From 2001 until 2006, Keith served as the Vice Chairman/CEO of White Hat Ventures, which served over 25,000 students and operated in six different states. In 2006, Keith moved to Business & Management Consulting where he acted as the CEO, offering expertise in turnaround and financial/cost management, efficiency improvement, strategic planning and growth strategies, and hands on CEO and management team coaching.
Keith’s 20 years as a CEO have afforded him experience in a wide variety of industries, including manufacturing, property management, and service organizations, in organizations with revenues that have ranged from $3 million to $3 billion in annual sales. In his consulting work he has worked with organizations in the architecture, software development, engineering, manufacturing, and high tech industries. Keith specializes in turnarounds, growth management, start-ups, mergers and consolidations, divestitures, experienced and skilled negotiator.