At Southern Growth Studio, we believe that we are stronger together. That is why the teams assembled for every one of our projects are always multi-disciplinary and the process is always iterative, so that vigorous debate, and a variety of expert points of view can refine our recommendations to help our clients thrive in a rapidly evolving world.
Michael is Co-Founder and Managing Partner at Southern Growth Studio. Michael leads the qualitative team with a particular focus on innovation, to deliver high-impact go-to-market strategies and product launches.
Michael has more than twenty years of experience leading marketing and innovation efforts. An expert in experiential marketing and user interface, Michael has consulted across a wide range of industries through his work at iXL and advertising agencies. He previously founded Johnson|Graber, a successful interactive marketing firm that was acquired by Memphis-based Lokion in 2004. Also an accomplished brand strategist, Michael has advised a myriad of clients on the positioning strategy and value proposition.
A published poet and musician, Michael is the creative force that compliments the analytical side of the house. Michael speaks and publishes frequently on best practices in marketing, business strategy, and innovation.
Michael holds a M.F.A from the University of Memphis.
Mark is President of Southern Growth Studio. Mark leads the Studio’s Strategic Analysis team and plays a key role in the firm’s general management, business development and client relations.
Mark has been actively helping businesses of all sizes grow for over 15 years, specializing in strategic planning, investment analysis and business development. He was most recently Director of Mergers & Acquisitions for ServiceMaster, a $3+ billion home services provider with several recognized brands, including TruGreen, Terminix and American Home Shield. He also served as Director of Strategy & Business Development for ServiceMaster during his tenure.
Prior to joining ServiceMaster, Mark was Director of Business Development for Guardian Pharmacy, responsible for sourcing and executing acquisitions for a PE-backed, long-term care pharmacy business that was twice named one of Atlanta’s Top 20 fastest growing companies during his tenure. Earlier in his career, Mark worked for The Home Depot in finance and strategy roles, as a financial consultant for Ernst & Young Corporate Finance, and as an associate for VCapital, a boutique investment bank, where he was responsible for evaluating and recommending venture capital investment opportunities.
Born and raised in Birmingham, Alabama, Mark’s passion for travel and exploration has led him to visit (and occasionally reside in) over 30 countries across six continents. He holds a BS with honors in Finance and International Studies from Indiana University and an MBA from Emory University.