How do you scale a service-based business? Join us May 27th for a special #SGWomen event where Founder & Managing Director of Next Gen Tax and Upgrade U, Cindy McGhee, shares her tips for growing your empire. After working with Fortune 500 companies for 15+ years, Cindy launched her own CPA firm and has since started a consulting agency to help others upgrade their business. Q&A to follow.
Where: In person at 36 Degrees North + virtual. Must RSVP for an invite!
When: Thursday, May 27, 5:30 - 7:30 PM CST
What is Startup Grind: Startup Grind is a global startup community designed to educate, inspire, and connect entrepreneurs.
Our monthly fireside chat provides ample opportunities to connect with amazing startups and the people behind them, tap into a strong support network, form meaningful connections, and gain inspiration for the startup journey ahead.
This month marks Startup Grind's 8th annual #SGWomen's Month. Join us as we recognize the stories, challenges and accomplishments of successful, inspiring female leaders from around the world. These women are founders, venture capitalists, engineers, executives, educators and more who represent the startup and tech community.
Cindy McGhee, CPA is the founder and managing director of NextGen Tax Services PLLC and Upgrade U.
An enthusiastic tax strategist who is passionate about saving her clients time and money, Cindy has more than 15 years of experience working for Fortune 500 companies in the oil & gas, health care, retail, and service industries. After years working for large CPA firms with ultra-wealthy clientele, Cindy recognized a gap in tax services available to small- and medium-sized businesses.
She started her own firm to provide these companies financially attainable solutions to reduce their tax burden. Today her clients range from successful, long-standing companies to start-ups and individuals with side hustles.
Cindy’s new project, Upgrade U, is a consulting agency that provides education and resources needed to help upgrade your business. Upgrade U is designed to teach you how to get to the next level. It is set to empower women to bust through glass ceilings. Chasing millionaire dreams requires you to think and move differently which Upgrade U provides you with practical tools you will need to be successful.
“My favorite part of my job is working with business owners and seeing them have that ‘aha’ moment when we show them small changes that often have a big impact on their bottom line,” Cindy says.
Originally from Springfield, Missouri, Cindy is the youngest of six children. She, her husband and their two kids have called Tulsa home for over 12 years. Cindy is a passionate supporter of youth and education programs.
NextGen Tax Services; Upgrade U
Founder & Managing Director
Cindy McGhee is the founder and managing director of NextGen Tax Services PLLC and Upgrade U.An enthusiastic tax strategist who is passionate about saving her clients time and money, Cindy has more than 15 years of experience working for Fortune 500 companies in the oil & gas, health care, retail, and service industries. After years working for large CPA firms with ultra-wealthy clientele, Ci…
Last Night's Game
Founder & Executive Director
As reflected by Resolute’s service offerings, Nicole brings a unique, integrated perspective to meeting today’s business and organizational challenges. She leads the firm with more than 15 years of public relations and marketing experience having advised a wide range of industries including social services, healthcare, transportation, retail, technology and finance.
Nicole’s work and community involvement have been recognized with several awards such as the Tulsa Regional Chamber’s Young Entrepreneur of the Year, Tulsa 40 from the Tulsa Business & Legal News and numerous Silver Link and Bronze Quill awards. In 2018, she was the recipient of the PRSA Tulsa Professional of the Year award.
Nicole serves on the boards of Tulsa Ballet and The Forge. She is also an adjunct professor at Oklahoma State University.
After seeing how the ability to talk sports gave her the upper hand as a woman in business, Amy and her brother Scott created Last Night’s Game to give their friends the same advantage. Last Night’s Game empowers its readers to join the sports conversation, even if they don’t know the first thing about sports.
They say those who can’t do, teach, and in Amy’s case, that’s the truth. Amy’s initial debut into sports quickly fizzled with a single season of soccer. After a few kicks to the face, tears and not enough halftime oranges, Amy quickly decided sports from the sideline was more her style. Her learned love of sports, thanks to her brother, came in handy when she embarked on her career path with Major League Baseball team. Her career spans multiple continents and industries, and encompasses event management, public relations, marketing, advertising and partnership development and activation.
Amy’s love for her community drew her to the founding committee for both Phoenix Suns Charities’ Suns 88 and Valley of the Sun United Way’s Generation United and is a graduate of and served on the Executive Committee for Valley Leadership. Amy is a mentor and judge in a variety of international and national business plan competitions, continuing her work with small businesses and entrepreneurs. This work is furthered by her involvement with Irish Angels, 1 Million Cups and Leadership Oklahoma. She was selected as a speaker at TEDxOU in 2017 and named a 2018 Achievers Under 40 recipient by The Journal Record. Always improving, Amy is going back to school in early 2020 to earn her MBA at The University of Notre Dame.
A Las Vegas, NV native and graduate of Arizona State University, Amy is a third-generation entrepreneur has lived internationally and loves to travel with her husband. In fact, they once flew around the world in 58 hours and 37 minutes. A master of small talk, bringing people together and the handwritten note, you can often find Amy not sweating the small stuff while embracing her inner domestic goddess and teaching her toddler son about sports.
Dee Hays, P.E. is the Founder and CEO of Excellence Engineering, LLC. Dee earned her Bachelor of Science degree from Kansas State University in the late 80’s, and graduated in 2017 from the OPM program at Harvard Business School. Dee is a board certified Professional Engineer licensed in 38 states and maintains a model law status with the National Council of Professional Engineers.
Dee is an accomplished CEO and has received numerous awards and distinctions throughout the years.
- 2020 ‐ Named one of Oklahoma’s Most Admired CEO’s.
- 2016, 2017 and 2018 ‐ Nominated for Oklahoma Women of the Year and named one of “50 Making a Difference” by the Journal Record
- 2018 – Inducted into the Oklahoma Women of the Year Circle of Excellence by the Journal Record
- 2014 ‐ Honored with the Enterprising Women of the Year Award by EW Magazine
While working as an engineer, Dee founded Excellence Engineering in 2001 with the primary focus on delivering to clients a better engineered package for their projects, providing boutique quality support, and building a team that excels in passion and talents. Excellence Engineering, LLC has grown to a multi‐discipline engineering firm providing turnkey projects from concept through operational completion. Excellence Engineering received national certification as a Women’s Business Enterprise by the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC) in 2013 and is WOSB and HubZone certified by the US government in 2015.
Under Dee’s direction and vision, Excellence Engineering has gained many awards and recognition including:
- American Express list of 50 Fastest Growing Women‐Owned businesses in the world in 2014, 2015 and 2016.
- #285 on the distinguished Inc. 500 list for 2014, and has continued to be on the Inc. 5000 list for 2015, 2016 and 2017.
- Nominated by the esteemed Oil and Gas Awards and was runner up as the Southwest Region’s Engineering Company of the year 2014.
- #1 fastest growing privately held company in Tulsa by The Journal Record in 2014.
Dee is a member of; The prestigious Women Presidents’ Organization, Women’s Business Council –Southwest, WBEA/South Texas and South, Society of Women Engineers, The National and Oklahoma, Societies of Professional Engineers, The International Women’s Forum, The National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying, The Society of American Military Engineers, Tulsa Regional STEM Alliance Advisory Board member, Go Red for Women for the Oklahoma Heart Association and the Oklahoma Commission for the Status of Women. Dee is the previous Chairman for the Sac and Fox Economic Development Holding Company Board and most recently was appointed to the Governor’s Council on Workforce and Economic Development for the State of Oklahoma.
Monica Wheat is a Strategist, Educator, Investor, and Venture Developer. Monica is Founder and Executive Director of Venture Catalysts, a non-profit venture, and ecosystem development group focused on investor/founder education, innovation hub, and large-scale entrepreneurial initiatives for over 40,000 attendees. She is the Techstars Startup Programs Lead leading programs nationwide and Founding Co-Director of Startup Boost, a global Pre-Accelerator. She served as a Consultant for Backstage Capital, co-producing their multi-city live investment tour and was the Managing Director of the Backstage Capital - Detroit Accelerator, a 4-city, global tech accelerator investing 3 months and $100,000 each in scaling startups for underrepresented founders.
She is a global speaker, judge, and consultant. Past clients have included Fortune 10 corporations, non-profits, school districts, tech accelerators, venture funds, and start-ups. She regularly speaks and consults at corporations & conferences on topics of emerging ecosystems, venture capital, digital innovation, and women in technology.
Her work has been featured in Crains, Huffington Post, Black Enterprise, and Forbes.
True North Ventures
Deep Fork Technology
Alex Lobodiak heads the business development & sales for GeoSafe and owns a boutique consulting company, True North Ventures. He is passionate about helping entrepreneurs with their go-to-market and growth strategies.
Alex is also involved as an advisor, mentor, director, or board member for Startup Grind, 36 Degrees North, Oklahoma Entrepreneurship Mentorship Program, Oklahoma Venture Forum, and All Kidz. He earned his MIS degree and an entrepreneurship-focused MBA, both from OU (Boomer!).
Please say hello if you come to an event!