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The Age Lessons consulting team is without peer in the industry, both in terms of professional achievement and academic credentials. This team is so strong in fact, that we consider it to be a sustainable point of competitive advantage in the marketplace.

Laurel Kennedy - Strategies

Jerry Carducci - Organizational Development

Mary Lynn Coyle - Communications

Sharon Deutsch - Research

Richard Gallagher, M.D. - Psycho/social Issues

Janis Hines - Social Systems

Melissa McDill - Creative Director

Kevin McGirr - Financial Factors




Laurel Kennedy – Founder, President
Before taking up the cause of Boomers, Kennedy first championed a cohort at the University of Chicago Graduate School of Business, penning an honors thesis which explored the effects of gender bias on women in sales. Kennedy has been on a tear ever since, using her formidable persuasive powers to represent clients and causes with equal passion and dedication.

In her two decades of consulting experience, Kennedy has spent considerable time in the corporate suite, helping Board-level executives tackle difficult problems ranging from product liability issues, to handling merger & acquisition fallout, to winning Wall Street favor on a proposed corporate restructuring, to re-staging the corporate brand. Her client list reads like a Who's Who of global business: Accenture, ACNielsen, American Airlines, Bankers Trust, Equitable, Kraft, Quaker, Nestle, SC Johnson and Sara Lee to name a few.

Kennedy is a much-published author in journals such as Advertising Age, Consumer Insight, Public Relations Journal, Personnel Journal, Illinois Banker, and the Journal of Health Care Marketing. Her intriguing solutions and provocative opinions have made Kennedy a popular presenter on the professional speaking circuit.





Jerry Carducci – Organizational Development
Optimization. Whether it’s crafting a high performance organizational structure or re-engineering customer-driven processes, Carducci brings a strong analytical skill set to the table, tempered by the negotiating finesse of a Secretary of State. Carducci is the “go-to” guy at Age Lessons when it comes to issues of intergenerational work teams and figuring out how to make them work.

Carducci has more than 30 years of applied senior level experience in the areas of organizational design and development, process engineering, cross-functional work team development, strategic planning and product marketing with companies like CNA Insurance. When it comes to organizational development and workforce excellence, Carducci knows whereof he speaks, having honed his skills in the corridors of some of the largest companies in America. Carducci holds the MBA with honors from North Park University and an undergraduate degree in marketing from Eastern Illinois University.

A much-published author, Carducci recently completed a major treatise on the aging workforce titled “America’s Changing Workforce and Workplace“. He has penned articles for professional journals including the National Underwriter.

Known as an exceptional group facilitator, Carducci has been tapped to serve on a number of boards and committees, applying his professional expertise. Currently, he sits on the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce Workplace Excellence Committee and chairs the Sub-committee for Workplace Innovation and Leadership.




Mary Lynn Coyle – Communications
Coyle is known as the “professional's professional”, the expert peers hire to tackle tough problems and design innovative programs that actually work in the corporate environment. She combines the discipline of an MBA with the drive of an investigative journalist and the savvy outlook of a Boardroom veteran.

Coyle served as Vice President, Corporate Communications with SABRE [then part of AMR Corporation], recruited from A.T. Kearney because of her broad experience base and strategic perspectives. Coyle's expertise spans some 20 countries and a broad array of challenges including developing programs to address workplace and workforce issues.

Coyle holds two advanced degrees, an MBA from the Lake Forest Graduate School of Management and an MSJ from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University.






Sharon Deutsch – Research
Deutsch has been called a marketer from head to toe because her consulting client list ranges from Alberto-Culver hair care to Sara Lee Hosiery products. A 20 year veteran of the consumer packaged goods field, Deutsch has assembled a stellar client roster that could double as a grocery list: Kraft, McDonald's, ConAgra Foods, Butterball Turkey, Dean Foods, Gardenburger, Sunkist, Unilever and The Wm. Wrigley Jr. & Company to name a few.

Her classroom accomplishments are equally impressive and include an MBA from the Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University, recognized as the world leader in marketing, and an MSJ [advertising] from Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism.





Richard Gallagher, M.D. – Psycho/social Issues
Listen. According to Dr. Gallagher, that’s the most important word in the English language and an essential characteristic for a psychiatrist dealing with aging patients who find themselves dismissed, displaced or marginalized at work and in society at large.

After earning his medical degree from the University of Illinois College of Medicine, Dr. Gallagher won a coveted internship at Cook County Hospital, followed by a psychiatric residency at Loyola University Hospital in Maywood, Illinois. Next, Dr. Gallagher served in the U.S. Army Medical Corps, treating injured soldiers evacuated from Vietnam.

Upon his return stateside, Dr. Gallagher joined Mercy Center for Health Care Services in Aurora, Illinois, the hospital where he still practices, and completed his certification by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology. Dr. Gallagher was elected Chairman, Department of Psychiatry; President, Medical Staff; Member, Board of Directors and Medical Director, Kendall County Human Services Department.

With Age Lessons, Dr. Gallagher will syndicate learnings from corporate to help other organizations address workforce issues such as ageism and generational differences.




Janis Hines – Social Systems
Think reverse career engineering. First, Hines made a name for herself in the world of public relations with groundbreaking work for marquee clients like Ford Motor Company and the State of California. Then, following a decades-long tenure at Edelman Worldwide, capped as Executive Vice President and head of that agency's Los Angeles office, Hines embarked on her second career. She enrolled at Pepperdine University, earned a master's in clinical psychology and co-founded a life/career coaching business.

Some say that Hines developed an interest in age-related issues while working with Colonel Harland Sanders, founder of Kentucky Fried Chicken, who began franchising at age 65. Others attribute her specialty in conflict resolution to years of handling challenging client and crisis situations. Yet another contingent holds that Hines has always been ahead of the curve, beginning with her planetary debut during the first year of the baby boom.





Melissa McDill – Creative Director
McDill's creative edge was polished by the waves of Santa Cruz, California, the original Surf City USA. A true entrepreneur, McDill founded a design group upon graduating college and never looked back. Her unique ability to anticipate and visualize the ergonomic needs of an aging population enabled McDill to develop more than a dozen packaging innovations that accommodate specific concerns ranging from moisture control to grip strength.

McDill is the recipient of more than 100 industry awards for designs ranging from corporate identity systems to packaging, advertising, promotion and special events. She holds a bachelor's degree from San Francisco's famed California College of Arts and Crafts.






Kevin McGirr – Financial Factors
In an ongoing quest to understand the relationship between values and valuables for clients, McGirr has acquired a mind-boggling number of certifications. This very catholic list of achievements allowed McGirr to develop a breakthrough financial planning approach--perfect for the Boomer generation--that melds emotional right brain concerns with rigorous left brain disciplines. McGirr's credentials include:

MBA, University of Chicago Graduate School of Business
CPA, Certified Public Accountant
CFP, Certified Financial Planner
CLTC, Certified Long Term Care Professional
CSA, Certified Senior Advisor
RIA, Registered Investment Advisor [Securities and Exchange Commission]
RLP, Registered Life Planner [The Kinder Institute]
Firmly rooted in the financial sector, McGirr began his career as an accountant with then-Big 8 firm Arthur Young & Co. From there, McGirr joined First Chicago Bank [now JPMorgan Chase] and worked overseas auditing Pacific Rim operations. Prior to focusing on financial planning exclusively, McGirr was a full-time instructor of accounting at alma mater Loyola University, where his riveting style garnered Teacher of the Year accolades.