Richard “Rick” Gilchrist
As a business leader and serial entrepreneur with 20 years of experience in management consulting, strategic business development and execution and executive management with an emphasis on Marketing, Big Data, Financial Services, Information Technology, Higher Education, Public Sector/Government, and Outsourcing, Rick is Guardian’s newest addition to the team as Guardian’s Chief Revenue Officer. As Co-Founder and former COO of New Frontier (Frontier Financials Group Inc.), a cutting edge firm providing authoritative and actionable intelligence in the Cannabis industry, Rick ensured daily operations, business development and strategic partnership initiatives. He is also the Co-Founder, board member and former COO of Addemar NV, a multi-channel marketing and market automation firm located in Hasselt Belgium, sold to Intelligent NV in January 2015, as well as a principle investor and advisor in a strategic business development firm.
Prior to working in the Cannatech industry, Rick worked as Managing Director of Davidsohn, managing their public sector efforts in Washington DC and Financial Services outreach on Wall Street. Rick also was the Principle of IT and Higher Education at Kelly, Anderson & Associates / KAA Federal. His experience in consultative analysis and management in the IT and Services industries allowed him to ensure strategy, products and services exceeded the needs of his constituents, consistently providing leading edge consulting and analysis with each partnership.
Rick was the Founder and Principal for The Metropolitan Marketing Group, a Relationship Management firm, developing business development strategies, competitive analysis and procurement strategies to equip partners to compete for business opportunities in outsourcing, telecommunications, information technology, financial services, and publishing and also served as Senior Vice President and Managing Director of Student Services for Presidium Inc., where he was both a member of the ESM practice group, providing strategic consulting and oversight in Education Services Management, IVR/Telecommunications and Outsourcing support as well as the Line of Business owner of Presidium’s Student Service business practice, taking this division from a $2.5M investment by Edison Ventures to an exit acquisition by Blackboard for $55M in 2010.
Prior to joining Presidium, Rick managed the business development, marketing, operations and product development for the Higher Education Solutions division of GreenwoodHall as a Managing Director and President of Education Sales and Marketing. While at G&H, Rick managed the acquisition and merger of the former Nelnet (NYSE: NNI) Financial Aid Services division and helped to expand service offerings to include touch-point management for Onboarding, Admissions Support, Retention/Persistence, Financial Services, Business Office support and various other enterprise-wide initiatives.
Rick also created growth for Nelnet Inc. and Sallie Mae, vertically integrated, higher education consulting, IT solutions and student finance providers. Gilchrist’s experience with product development and process implementation has enabled him to provide in-depth analysis and craft custom solutions for over 500 higher education institutions, a network of banks, guarantors, lenders and servicers while increasing market presence for companies such as Sallie Mae Servicing, USA Funds, Peterson’s and Chela Education Financing (acquired by Nelnet).
Prior to joining the ranks within the Higher Education industry, Gilchrist was an adjunct Professor of Computer Science at Ivy Tech State College in Indiana and a seasoned IT professional. Rick completed undergraduate studies at Purdue University and received a BS in Business Administration and Management Information Systems from Prescott, Master of Science in Business from the University College of London, University of London and a Masters in Project Management and Organizational Leadership from Villanova.