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Our History, Philosophy & Executive Profiles

History

In the mid-20th Century, when General Motors and the United States ruled an industrial world transitioning into the next phase of economic enlightenment, millions of Americans migrated from urban cores to outlying suburbs.

As these idyllic "Peyton Places" flourished, new modes of revolutionary lifestyles — propagated by the Baby Boomer generation, prosperity and an expanding media — influenced tectonic shifts in the evolution of American society and its impact worldwide.

The genesis of the Oakwood Park Associates heritage began then, when the two founding Principals — Mr. Richard A. Marks and Mr. Richard G. Sarkisian — joined in the pursuit of knowledge and cultural enlightenment. Upon entering higher education and society in general, the Principals embarked on separate professional and personal pathways for a number of years, during which they succeeded in many business sectors.

When Mr. Sarkisian returned to the U.S. from China in 2008, the Principals reunited their talents, strengths and business philosophies. This new enterprise leverages their relationships and resources in the transportation, energy, life science business sectors, and capital formation markets.

OPA's value proposition focuses on: Strategic Planning, Business Intelligence, Expansion Planning, Market Share Capture, and Business Development. We emphasize a hands-on approach, working diligently with clients who share our desire for long-term and trusting relationships that are mutually profitable, productive, and intrinsically rewarding.

Philosophy

Teamwork is the key to success in every endeavor. This is the cornerstone philosophy that we embed into every relationship we embark upon. Knowing how to be a functional member of a team is a lifelong lesson that changes from project to project, client to client.

The axiom "you win as a team; you lose as a team" is always true. We have seen too often where greed, self-effacing motives and finger-pointing can negate the goals and accomplishments that all teams strive toward.

All our Team members have owned or operated a business, worked internationally, and earned advanced degrees from reputable universities. We understand what it's like to be in the trenches, making hard decisions to meet payroll, generate profits and pay debt. Whether it is human capital, operational decision making, or pick a business discipline of the day, we focus on our operational expertise that has been honed with national and international clientele over a wide variety of industries.

Our Team has completed hundreds of transactions and/or assignments, ranging from $1 million for small, privately held companies to over $2 billion for large, global public corporations such as AT&T, The Prudential Insurance Company, Continental Insurance, and international monetary portfolios.

Executive Profiles

richard a. marksRichard A. Marks, Executive Vice Chairman. As a trusted expert and entrepreneur who has advised and counseled many notable public and private sector entities and non-profit organizations, Mr. Marks draws upon his diverse background in knowledge management, business expansion, strategic planning, finance, asset management and information technologies to assist clients with meeting and exceeding their production goals and profit margins.

Mr. Marks is fundamentally proficient at mobilizing comprehensive marketing/communications campaigns, developing affinity networks and forging innovative strategic partnerships. During the past twenty years, Mr. Marks has provided his advisory services to domestic and international private enterprises, governmental authorities and non-profit organizations. In his capacity as a policy maker, legal expert, negotiator, television producer and technologist, he has advised many corporate 100 and governmental agencies on a broad variety of business and social programs.

Mr. Marks is a published authority on digital asset management and has presented at a variety of conferences on timely topics such as future proofing e-commerce applications, the importance of creating a knowledge management approach to business in the finance and insurance industries and security management techniques. Mr. Marks earned a MS in technology business management from the New Jersey Institute of Technology and was a charter member of the New Jersey Technology Council in 1995.

richard g. sarkisianRichard G. Sarkisian, Ph.D., Executive Vice Chairman, has worked in finance for the past 20 years as an investment banker and hedge fund analyst, with an extensive working experience worldwide — with a recent concentration in China.

In China, Dr. Sarkisian successfully facilitated raising capital for seven Chinese companies in the fields of children's education, real estate marketing, traditional Chinese medicine, printing press machinery, active pharmaceutical ingredients, and fertilizer production.

Dr. Sarkisian's previous experience includes being an analyst at HSBC and equity portfolio manager at a New York hedge fund.

Dr. Sarkisian holds a Ph.D. degree in mathematics and has taught at City University of New York and the University of Toronto.

susan goldbergSusan Goldberg, CMP, Business Development & Strategic Planning Senior Associate, relies on her distinct and diversified background for developing new business initiatives, identifying collaborative resources for adding value to OPA projects, and designing strategies benefiting OPA clients and portfolio assets.

In addition to her distinguished career as the Director of Meetings and Travel for Hadassah, the world's largest nonprofit women's organization, Ms. Goldberg’s experience as an Intensive Care Unit/ Emergency Room Registered Nurse combined with a Masters Degree from Columbia University in Nursing Administration and Nursing Education provide OPA with a hands on knowledge base for the life sciences and health care technology sectors.

Ms. Goldberg’s previous work in the Middle East also adds to her unique perspective and expertise encompassing a variety of leading edge fields of interest. Ms. Goldberg established her own company, SEGue Consulting Inc., in 2009 upon retiring from Hadassah.