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Bridging the Gap from Strategy to Execution

Our Team at a Glance:

Sherwood Learning Solutions Training Teams

The Sherwood Learning Solutions team operates out of our Hollywood Park offices in Fairfield, NJ. Our two founding partners work with our client services directors and an operations team, along with consultants who design and deliver our workplace solutions. Key members of our team include:

  • Kathy Sherwood, senior partner
  • Pete Sherwood, managing partner
  • Mary McElroy, client services director
  • Dawn Mizzone, director of special projects
  • Richard (Rich) Silkes, senior consultant
  • Dr. Alan Richter, diversity consultant
  • Cheryl Rykowski, senior consultant
  • Pam Sammarco, senior consultant
  • Susan Schmit, senior consultant
  • Rachel Anevski, senior consultant
  • Tom Blaisse, senior consultant
  • Debora Yodice, Kimberly Agresta and Jennifer Melito, client support 

Our Team in Detail:

Kathy Sherwood, senior partner, founded Sherwood Learning Solutions (Sherwood Consultants L.L.C.) in 1992. Her primary role is to foster a team approach in developing high-quality learning solutions that solve our clients’ critical business needs. Her firm focuses on competency development, curriculum planning, core programs, custom training and coaching. The Sherwood firm also has expertise in e-learning and virtual learning program design. Previously Kathy Sherwood had a 20-year corporate human resources career that included a variety of generalist and training positions and ended as VP of HR for a privately held retail firm. She graduated from Rider University with high honors and a major in social sciences, specializing in labor market economics.

Pete Sherwood, managing partner, entered the training and development field after more than 25 years as a daily newspaper journalist. His role at Sherwood includes editorial supervision, research, custom design and client management of key training projects. Prior to joining the company in 1993, Pete Sherwood was affiliated with three New Jersey newspapers in positions including reporter, news editor and managing editor. He holds a bachelor of science in commerce degree from Rider University with a major in business administration and minors in marketing and management. 

Mary McElroy, client services director, is a strategic communications and training professional with more than 20 years of experience designing, developing and delivering results-oriented employee and human resources communications, web sites, portals and training materials. She previously worked with KeyCorp, the Kauffman Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership, QED Consulting and Communispond. She has a B.S. in music education from the University of Illinois and an MBA in organizational behavior and marketing from the Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University.

Dawn Mizzone, director of special projects, has more than 20 years of experience working with Sherwood and is responsible for sourcing and identifying talent for key assignments for both Sherwood and our clients. She also works directly with Sherwood’s clients to provide research and manage internal logistical support. Previously Sherwood’s office manager, Dawn Mizzone has worked on the design of scores of workshops and coordinated logistics for more than 250 Sherwood programs in the U.S. and globally.

Richard (Rich) Silkes, senior consultant, specializes in creating innovative customized designs as well as facilitating management and professional skills workshops for intact teams and ongoing corporate university programs. As a performance improvement consultant, he brings a broad range of experience in customer service, management development and organizational change. Rich Silkes also has held director-level positions in the retail industry, both in specialty stores and mass merchandising. He received graduate and undergraduate degrees from Brown University and has pursued doctoral studies at Columbia University. 

Dr. Alan Richter, diversity consultant, partners with Sherwood Learning Solutions to support our global diversity and culture initiatives. He has provided strategic consulting, facilitation and program delivery for varied organizations in Africa, Asia and Europe, in addition to the Americas. He also has been involved in innovative instructional product development. Dr. Richter is the president of QED Consulting, a firm based in New York for more than 20 years. He has a master of arts degree and a bachelor of science degree, both from the University of Cape Town, and a Ph.D. in philosophy from Birkbeck College, London University.

Cheryl Rykowski, senior consultant, has expertise in designing, developing and delivering customized and proprietary training programs. Previously she was director of global learning and development for MasterCard International and earlier held positions as manager of global organizational learning and project leader, training and organizational development, for Avon Products. She received a bachelor of science degree in business administration from Boston University’s School of Management, and a MA in education from Fairfield University. 

Pam Sammarco, senior consultant, is a learning strategist, business partner and project manager. Prior to her work as a consultant, she was a learning and performance manager in sales/account management for Medco Health Solutions, and held learning and development positions Alcatel-Lucent, American Express Travel Related Services and Citicorp. Sammarco holds a master of science degree in applied psychology, with a concentration in HR management from Stevens Institute of Technology, and a bachelor of arts degree from Douglass College.

Susan Schmit, senior consultant, is a CPA with extensive experience as a technical accountant, educator and business controller. She provides financial analysis to firms to improve profitability and cash flow, develops short- and long-term financial plans and delivers financial training and coaching for leadership. Previously she was finance manager for training at Corning Inc., lecturer at the State University of New York, and senior auditor and team lead for KPMG Peat Marwick. Schmit has a bachelor of science degree in accounting from Alfred University and studied at the Sorbonne University. 

Rachel Anevski, senior consultant for talent acquisition,  has held executive-level roles such as director of marketing, director of business relationships and director of human capital at both large and mid-sized regional firms.  She has spent her career working with partners and providing coaching for partners, executives, managers and staff.  Consulting engagements have included personnel programming, benefits, mentoring programs, writing policy and procedure, and providing training.  She has a master’s degree in organizational behavior from Fairleigh Dickinson University and a bachelor’s degree in forensic psychology from John Jay College of Criminal Justice.

Tom Blaisse, senior consultant, brings more than 25 years of experience in leadership accountability, communication effectiveness, and time and stress management from industries including financial, manufacturing, technology, hospitality, pharmaceutical, health care and government. Formerly one of Franklin Covey's top seminar leaders, he has worked as a master trainer, group process facilitator, account manager, HRD consultant and executive coach. He holds a bachelor of arts degree in theater and speech communications from DeSales University and a master of arts degree in counseling psychology from Rider University.

Other critical members of the Sherwood Learning Solutions in-house staff devoted to workshop design and client support are Debora Yodice, Kimberly Agresta and Jennifer Melito. The Sherwood team also includes a highly qualified group of affiliated consultants with diverse backgrounds and professional experience in corporate training design and facilitation.