About Us

DIANE FITZGERALD, PRINCIPAL

Diane Fitzgerald serves as Principal of The Fitzgerald Group, a consulting company she founded in 1994. Focusing on strategic planning, marketing, sales and communications for a diverse group of clients, The Fitzgerald Group supports business leaders in developing and implementing company-wide processes and procedures.

With a history of successfully introducing planning and organizing as key elements of any company, Diane advises domestic and international corporations on realizing their full potential and sustaining growth. Her credentials are multifaceted.

Projects Diane is currently involved with include a luxury green home in the heart of Chicago, business development and marketing & communications for a progressive and cutting-edge construction company, and strategic planning for an international franchisor making its debut in the US this year.

Previously Diane was director of Global Thought Leadership Marketing & Communications at Andersen Consulting. With a team from around the world, she led efforts to shape ideas from creation to dissemination.

As president of Lotus Tours, an international motorcycle touring company, Diane managed all new projects and project development, operations and marketing & communications.

As Senior Vice President of Sales & Marketing, Diane’s on-line role at The Habitat Company, a Chicago real estate developer, brokerage and property manager, had P&L responsibilities. In that role, Diane’s leadership helped increase revenues 22%, developed the brokerage sales force from 16 to 33 brokers, increased productivity by 20% in six months and created structure for profitability/gap analysis.

At Fruit of the Loom, Inc., Diane was Director, Corporate Communications, a role that served as liaison to the investor community and financial analysts globally. Diane’s internal and external communications – from information regarding analysts meetings, annual reports, warehouse closing, NAFTA & GAAT issues and inexpensive off-shore labor – established the relationship Fruit of the Loom had with the world.

Prior to completing her MBA from the University of Chicago in 1993, Diane had been founding executive director of Marwen Foundation, a non-profit visual arts organization – the first program of its kind in the country - focusing on inner-city youth, job training, career development and college planning through visual arts curriculum.

Diane started her career as an art teacher, most recently at the Francis W. Parker school and The School of The Art Institute, holds an active Illinois Real Estate License and is a certified, licensed motorcyclist. Diane’s personal riding highlights include several exotic trips to Brazil, Morocco, Thailand, Turkey and Africa. Diane and her husband live in historic Old Town in a landmark home which they fully renovated to its 1882 distinction. It is one of the many development projects they have tackled over the years.


WENDY JARCHOW, ASSOCIATE

Wendy joined The Fitzgerald Group in 2008 having previously spent 14 years in the financial services industry in both Chicago and Cleveland, Ohio. Transitioning from a traditional marketing role into consulting was a likely next step for Wendy as she continues to help clients find real and lasting solutions to business challenges by providing new ways of thinking about their approaches to getting and keeping business.

Wendy has extensive experience in the development and implementation of comprehensive programs to streamline processes, and enhancing internal controls and operational effectiveness.  Excelling at partnering with different lines of business to significantly increase a company’s foot print, expand market share, and generate sustainable revenue, she is a team builder with strong strategic business, market and sales planning acumen.

Wendy has directed management functions, including budget development, cash flow projections and resource allocation.  She has conducted the research, selection and implementation of training programs and outlined a learning curriculum to enhance sales performance.  In addition, she has developed job descriptions and established performance standards.

As part of The Fitzgerald Group, Wendy brings clients customized solutions to their specific circumstances and immediate needs. She collaborates with business leaders assisting in the strategic planning process, the implementation of the plan and problem-solving. Wendy’s experience includes working with small businesses as well as large corporations and Fortune 500 companies.

Demonstrating that she can add value to an organization, Wendy entered the corporate world directly after high school. Concurrently advancing her career she persistently works toward her Bachelors Degree in Business with an expected completion date in late 2010. In her free time, Wendy and her husband enjoy traveling. Her favorite pastime is spending time with family and friends. When not on the go, Wendy’s hobbies are cooking, reading, running and yoga.

BURT RICHMOND, ASSOCIATE

As an Associate with The Fitzgerald Group, Burt is involved with workplace/space planning for our clients. Burt works with clients to seamlessly integrate architecture, systems, furniture and technology, designing the workplace into a strategic asset. Having a high-performance work environment helps people improve individual work processes, manage knowledge, speed the development of ideas, and quickly gain access to information.

 Burt holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Industrial Design/Interior Architecture from Syracuse University. In 1961, Burt started his career in New York at Perkins Eastman architecture firm as an Industrial Designer. He was transferred to their Chicago office in 1963. In 1968, Burt, along with two friends, founded Richmond Manhoff Marsh, an interior architectural and design firm specializing in office design and planning. By 1987, the company had grown to over $10 million in annual fees with a staff of 180 architects and designers in 7 cities. Eventually, Richmond Manhoff & Marsh became The Environments Group which was bought by Perkins & Will Architects in 2008.

Beginning in 1982, Burt organized and guided motorcycle tours around the world. In 1985, he incorporated Lotus Tours, an international motorcycling touring company. By 1987, Burt devoted his energies full-time to Lotus Tours. As Chief Executive Officer and Tourmeister, Burt led discriminating travelers on hundreds of trips through Asia, Africa, Europe, South America and the United States.

Although Lotus Tours ceased operations in 2007, Burt continues to create and capitalize on networks and business connections to promote and produce motorsports events under the banner of FitzRich, Inc. In 2008, he was an integral part of producing Motogiro America, a classic motorcycle rally based on the historic, world famous Motogiro d’Italia. In conjunction with organizing Motogiro America, Burt co-founded the inaugural Monterey Motorcycle Meet (or simply, “The Meet”), a week-long series of events including Motogiro America, the Moto Concorso motorcycle show and the Mid-America Auction, culminating with the Red Bull MotoGP at Laguna Seca.

A strategic visionary with a clear sense of purpose, Burt has demonstrated the ability to lead clients and partners to new levels of success, usually while having fun.

Burt and his wife live in Chicago’s historic Old Town in a landmark home, which they fully renovated to its 1882 distinction. It is one of the many development projects they have tackled over the years. He also continually works on vintage motorcycle and auto restorations.


KRISTEN TOBIS, ASSOCIATE

In 2010, Kristen joined The Fitzgerald Group carrying with her over 5-years of project management and strategic communications experience and over 10-years of frontline customer service. As an Associate, Kristen supports client initiatives with business acumen and know-how ideal for entrepreneurial small business owners.

In her experience as Project Manager for a University Medical Center and business consulting firm, both in Chicago, Kristen has specialized in strategic communications, process improvement and implementation. Collaborating with clinical/industry specialists, she has developed and executed comprehensive processes and practices to maintain compliance with regulatory bodies and corporate policies in healthcare and financial services.

Kristen has extensive experience in the development of website content, print collaterals, presentations and marketing tools used to reach out to potential clients while maintaining established relationships. She has researched best practices and developed service standards for web-based and face-to-face sales teams.

As part of The Fitzgerald Group, Kristen brings a keen understanding of the small business owner, aware of the joys and struggles of getting and staying organized, targeting the right audiences, finding the right words to express the right messages and seeking financing. Her knowledge of competitive markets, positioning and growth enables her to add considerable value to the planning and implementation focus of The Fitzgerald Group.

Just after completing her Masters Degree in Corporate Communication from DePaul University in 2006, Kristen co-founded Vine Journeys International, an international tour operator and local wine tasting event planning company. Utilizing the expertise of The Fitzgerald Group, Kristen implemented a strategic plan, developed to-market strategies and tactics, and successfully executed a small business launch, showing profits within the first year.

In addition to entrepreneurship, Kristen enjoys spending her free time cooking for friends, reading, and running local 5k, 10k and half marathon races. Additionally, she enjoys attending wine tastings and dining out with her husband.

Web Hosting Companies