Industry Advisory Panel
The industry advisory panel brings together an experienced group of experts from academia and the fitness, wellness and recreation fields to advise on relevant consumer and core developments. An esteemed group that offers tremendous knowledge and real world experience, the Industry Advisory Panel solicits opinions on trends, opportunities and initiatives to help provide future direction to ACE as it carries out its mission. The panel's feedback is critical to ACE and the organization's commitment to always offer the very best in certification, education and training to our fitness professionals.
Industry Advisory Panel Chair
Shannon Fable, 2013 IDEA and 2006 ACE Instructor of the Year, is a fitness business and programming consultant who has worked with brands such as Anytime Fitness, Schwinn®, Power Systems, ACE and BOSU® over the past 20 years. As an experienced educator and certified Book Yourself Solid® Business Coach, she helps fitness entrepreneurs navigate the industry and increase profits. Fable, a member of the ACE Board of Directors, is the owner of GroupEx PRO®, a cloud based group fitness management tool, and Balletone®.
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Industry Advisory Panel Vice Chair
A strategic marketing professional in both high-profile corporate and start-up environments, Kelly Gray specializes in business growth strategies and branding, and has worked for corporations such as Pepsi, Nike Swim and Nutrition 53. She serves as the director of corporate sales for Crocs, Inc. and as a fitness instructor for Wellbridge. She holds a certificate in leadership as an alumnus of the President's Leadership Institute at the University of Colorado at Boulder and a bachelor's degree in advertising from the same institution.
KERRI O’BRIEN, Ed.D.
ACE Liaison to the Industry Advisory Panel
As executive vice president of product and business development, Kerri O'Brien, Ed.D., MBA, CSCS, is responsible for leading the strategy, design, and development of traditional and digital products as it relates to certification materials, professional education, online education methodologies and eLearning platforms, and new educational products and services. O'Brien also manages ACE's product life cycle, including understanding market demands, remaining current on technology trends, ensuring operational efficiency and maintaining ACE's competitive landscape in the fitness industry. O'Brien represents ACE as a national expert with experience in the for-profit fitness sector, non-profit YMCAs and as a subject matter expert for all of Arizona's police organizations. She holds a doctorate degree from Argosy University, where she focused her research on motivational behavioral change, specifically on its impact in corporate wellness.
JACQUE CROCKFORD, M.S.
ACE Liaison to the Industry Advisory Panel
Jacque Crockford, M.S., CSCS, is an ACE Certified Personal Trainer and exercise physiology content manager at ACE. She has been a personal trainer and performance coach for over 14 years. Jacque grew up in the fitness industry, participating in YMCA sports and teaching gymnastics and swimming from a young age. She was on Kansas State University’s women’s rowing team, and she currently competes in triathlons throughout the country. Jacque has been featured in several publications, including LA Times, New York Post, Health, USA Triathlon, SHAPE and Women’s Health.
ACE Liaison to the Industry Advisory Panel
Stefanie Lujan is an ACE Certified Personal Trainer and Group Fitness Instructor (GFI) and content project manager at ACE. She began her career in the fitness industry in 2010 under the mentorship of Julz Arney and is a current GFI for 24 Hour Fitness. In addition to Stefanie’s ACE certifications, she also holds an RYT-200 from YogaWorks and has successfully completed instructor trainings for Schwinn Indoor Cycling, TRX and Indo-Row. Prior to joining the fitness industry Stefanie worked in real estate as a commercial developer, building more than 550,000 square feet of retail and mixed use space.
JANE BAHNEMAN, M.S.
Jane Bahneman is the director of central operations and fitness/wellness operations for CENTERS, LLC, the leading collegiate recreation management company in the nation, and is the co-owner of Blue Nectar Yoga Studio outside of Washington D.C. She co-founded Well Equipped Consulting, and served in leadership roles at Georgetown University, the University of Virginia, the Richmond Athletic Club and the YWCA. Jane is a published author and featured subject matter expert in several publications. She holds certifications from ACE, ACSM, NASM, NSCA, AFAA, Yoga Alliance and Spinning. Jane has worked and presented in the fitness industry for nearly two decades. She specializes in business development and strategy, executive leadership and goal achievement education.
Gregory Degnan, M.D.
Dr. Gregory Degnan, M.D., serves as medical director of the Atlantic Coast Athletic Clubs based out of Charlottesville, Virginia and also as the associate clinical professor of orthopedic surgery at the University of Virginia. He maintains an active clinical practice in orthopedic surgery at Sentara Martha Jefferson Hospital in Charlottesville. In addition, he sits on the board of managers for Sentara Martha Jefferson Hospital and is the vice chairman for the Sentara Quality Integrated Network in the Charlottesville region. He has published numerous articles and provided many interviews in peer-reviewed journals. Dr. Degnan's passion is driving the move toward integrating the fitness industry into health care.
Jennifer Flynn is a strategy consultant for Mayo Clinic Global Business Solutions. In this role, she provides strategic consultation to companies on health management best practices. In addition to her consulting role, she is an active member of leading industry organizations including the Health Enhancement Research Organization (HERO), Population Health Alliance (PHA), and The Conference Board to support research initiatives that provide evidence, knowledge, and insight to advance the field of health management. Flynn graduated from Denison University with a bachelor's degree in psychology, received her Master's in Health Management from American University, and is working toward a Ph.D. in industrial/organizational psychology.
Jonathan Lever currently serves as vice president for health strategy and innovation for YMCA of the USA and a member of its senior leadership team. Prior to the Y, he was the founding CEO of the Nonprofit Center of Northeast Florida, Inc., an organization that provides management, legal and advocacy assistance to nonprofits. Lever has also served as a program officer at the Jessie Ball duPont Fund, one of the largest private foundations in the Southeast, and practiced nonprofit law in Boston. Lever holds a bachelor's in religion from the College of William and Mary, a master's in education from Harvard University and a law degree from Northeastern University.
Rachele Pojednic, Ph.D.
Dr. Rachele Pojednic is a research fellow at the Institute of Lifestyle Medicine, Harvard Medical School. She holds a Ph.D. from Tufts University in Biochemical and Molecular Nutrition and Exercise Physiology and an Ed.M. in Physical Education and Coaching. As a researcher, her work has a specific focus on physical activity and nutrition interventions for the prevention and treatment of non-communicable chronic disease. Dr. Pojednic also serves on the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) Exercise Is Medicine® education committee. She has been a consultant and writer to several organizations, including the Today Show and Huffington Post Healthy Living Blog.
Jennifer has over 25 years of experience in the fitness industry. She has a strong passion for group fitness and has developed a wide variety of fitness programming that includes work in multiple types of group training. She has held a number of positions in the fitness industry including management, program development and training. As a continuing education provider for both ACE and AFAA, she has traveled throughout the United States and internationally presenting workshops and training fitness professionals. Jennifer has worked for Crunch for over 16 years and is currently the national director of group fitness for Crunch Franchise.
Robert Sherman is the general manager of Bridges Fitness and Yoga and owner of Robert Sherman Fitness, LLC. He is a Master Instructor for SPRI, Schwinn and ActivMotion Bar. With 34 years in the health industry, he is a much sought-after speaker, trainer and program consultant for studios, clubs, wellness facilities and conventions throughout the United States and internationally. He holds a bachelor’s degree in business from the University of Maryland, and is a Gold Certified Personal Trainer and Fitness Instructor by ACE, AFAA and ACSM.
Pam Watts is the executive director for NIRSA: Leaders in Collegiate Recreation. In her tenure with the Association, Watts served primarily as NIRSA's second-in-command until assuming the executive director role in early 2012. She was a key contributor to the Association's transition to a “Future First” governance model and establishment of a credential for collegiate recreation. She directs the staff team at NIRSA HQ, fosters external relationships for the association, and works closely with NIRSA, NIRSA Foundation, and NIRSA Services Corporation Boards of Directors to actuate the aligned strategic plan of all three entities in service to members.
Lisa Wheeler is the owner of Wheels In Motion Productions and is currently the vice president of fitness for Daily Burn, where she leads content and trainer development and fitness production. She has also served as director of group fitness development for Equinox, education manager and Global Master Trainer for Reebok University and program developer for Crunch. Lisa developed and starred in numerous fitness videos for Weight Watchers, Acacia, Reebok, Shape Magazine, Westin Hotels, and Body Bar and hosted The Method fitness show on The Health Network. Behind the camera, she has worked as a program design consultant, choreographer and camera coach for well over 400 programs (DRTV, retail, digital media) for major distributors and companies including NBC/Radius, Livestrong.com, Daily Burn, Beachbody, Gaiam, Anchor Bay and Lionsgate Films. Lisa is the co-author of two books on The New York Times Best Sellers list.
Dr. Laszlo Zopcsak is a health and fitness expert at the Professional Standards Committee of the Brussels-based EuropeActive. He is a visiting lecturer and academic member at Universidad Europea and Real Madrid Graduate School in Spain. Laszlo is a founder and CEO of the International Wellness Institute (IWI), the first EuropeActive accredited fitness training provider school in the central European region. He is also the president of the Hungarian Health and Fitness Association. Laszlo received his Ph.D. in 2011 with a "European Doctorate Mention" and "Outstanding Grade" at Universidad Europea de Madrid, Spain. He has 20 years of experience working in the fitness industry.