Leadership Team

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Deb Barnard

Managing Director and Founder


With more than 30 years of alliances, sales, sales management, and sales training leadership and experience in her background, Deb is instrumental in defining, designing, and delivering Alliancesphere’s Training services and supporting tools. Deb works directly with clients to implement best-practice based alliances and sales programs that deliver measurable results for all stakeholders.Co-founding Alliancesphere in 2002, Deb is a skilled facilitator and collaborative leader who thrives in situations where its crucial to get everyone operating from the same playbook, including senior executives.Prior to Alliancesphere, Deb served as president of Sales Impact Enterprises, Inc., a consulting company providing customized training for a changing workforce in the high-tech industry. There she developed and implemented programs for a variety of clients including HP, Compaq, IBM, Unisys, Microsoft, Sybase, Sun Microsystems, SAP, EMC, and MatrixOne.Before that, Deb spent 18 years with Digital Equipment Corporation/Compaq. As Digital’s director of sales training for the Americas, Deb had responsibility for providing training to the entire sales, sales support, and sales management organization, marketing organization, and partner organization for both North and South America. Prior to this, she was responsible for New Hire Skills training worldwide, managing an organization responsible for an intensive pass/fail skills curriculum. Before entering the training organization, she was a sales manager with full P&L responsibility covering the state of Maine and responsible for growing revenues and market share across the state. She began her career as a sales representative covering North New England states and exceeded her quota every year while winning the DEC100 award.A transplanted New Englander now living in Atlanta, Deb holds a bachelor’s degree in business management from the Whittimore School of Business at the University of New Hampshire.

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Lorin Coles

Managing Director and Founder


Widely recognized as a pioneer in the field of alliance management and collaboration, Lorin Coles co-founded Alliancesphere in 2002 with the goal of creating a new kind of consultancy with a singular focus on collaborative execution to help clients realize the full potential of their strategic relationships.Lorin brings over twenty years of thought leadership and operational expertise in the areas of sales, alliance, channels, business development and ecosystem value creation. Lorin and his team have become known for driving breakthrough results and business outcomes through a unique process of end-to-end, corporate-to-field, customer-centered execution of alliance strategy and ecosystems for clients including Cisco Systems, Intel, IBM, The Coca-Cola Company, Equifax, Jabil, and numerous other industry leaders.Previously, Lorin served as Senior Vice President of Alliances for Scient/iXL where his team created an industry-leading program recognized as “Best-in-Class” by Gartner.  At Scient, Lorin Coles had responsibility for the entire alliances lifecycle, from development and management to the deployment and support of Scient’s Partners. Lorin was directly involved with alliances-related corporate and field initiatives, and his group established relationships with technology leaders such as Sun, Intel, Microsoft, Cisco, IBM, Oracle, BEA and Interwoven. Under Mr. Coles’s leadership, the alliance program influenced over $200 million in Scient revenue.Lorin Coles previously served as Assistant Vice President for the Americas for NCR’s High Availability/Electronic Commerce group. While working at NCR, Mr. Coles pioneered sales and marketing alliances and is credited with the launch and support of the Microsoft Enterprise Partnership initiative.Lorin is an active leader in the Association of Strategic Alliance Professionals (ASAP) and is CSAP certified. He was also a founding member and past President of the Southeast Chapter of ASAP.Coles currently serves as a mentor and advisor to Engage Ventures and DRIVE, and he is past-Chairman for the American Israel Chamber of Commerce (now Conexx) in Atlanta.

Norman Sterling

Norman Sterling

Head of Global Delivery and Master Facilitator


Norman Sterling has more than 30 years’ experience in the Sales, Sales Management and Alliances arena. As one of Alliancesphere’s master facilitators, he brings a strong set of competencies and personal experiences built over decades helping clients plan, design, and execute solutions to complex business problems. He also relies on that experience to manage the evolution of Alliancesphere’s Intellectual Property and its supporting network of facilitators around the globe.Prior to joining Alliancesphere in 2013, Norman ran his own Sales Performance Consultancy, partnering with Alliancesphere across many of their joint client projects. He was also Executive Vice President of e-Strategia Consulting Group, specializing in business performance management and sales acceleration program execution projects that yielded increased revenues for the clients in the 100s of millions of dollars.
Norman’s earlier career was in the UK, where he worked for IBM as an accredited Client Executive, Global Services Consultant in the manufacturing practice and a Competitive Marketing Consultant. His strong engineering base was gained working for the BBC and the UK Government as a Capital Projects Engineer, for which he achieved Chartered Engineer status and membership in the Institution of Engineering and Technology. Norman earned an Honours Degree in Engineering from the University of Ulster.Norman is a dual UK and US citizen and resides in Georgia with his wife, Lynn. He is a past-President and advisor to the non-profit St. Andrew Rowing Club in Roswell, Georgia. You may also hear him commentating from the announcer’s booth at some of the largest rowing regattas in the USA or marshaling the fairways at East Lake Golf Club, where he is a 15-year volunteer committee member at the PGA Tour Championship, which proudly funds “The Miracle at East Lake” inner city rejuvenation project.

Andrew Burke

Andrew Burke

Principal and Head of Marketing


Andrew Burke brings over 20 years of communication, training, and alliances experience to Alliancesphere. He is instrumental in defining and designing Alliancesphere offerings and supporting tools, working directly with clients to craft best-practice based alliances programs to deliver measurable results for all stakeholders.Prior to joining Alliancesphere at its founding in 2002, Mr. Burke served as Director of Alliances and Analyst Relations for Scient (formerly iXL, Inc.). Andrew was responsible for developing and managing strategic worldwide partner relationships within an alliance portfolio of leading software companies, including Verity, ISS, Aspect, Mercator, and Epicentric. And working with key executives, he helped create the formalized Alliance Development process for Scient and oversaw this program, screening over 500 companies interested in partnering with Scient. Additionally, he managed all elements of Scient’s relationships with key industry analyst firms (Gartner, Forrester, IDC, Yankee Group, and others) with duties including the creation of an annual analyst relations plan for scheduled interactions/interviews between company leaders and analysts; management and execution against the annual plan; and quarterly updates/alterations to the plan, based upon company objectives and the analysts’ publication schedule.Andrew Burke also served as a Research Analyst for three of Scient’s Chief Technology Officers. His responsibilities included the research for and creation of SWOT analyses on potential acquisition targets and alliance partners, and the production of detailed white papers. Andrew also worked closely with the leadership team to create the business plan and investor deck for a spin-out from the company, with these materials instrumental in closing a $50MM first round of funding.Andrew Burke holds both a bachelor’s and master’s degree from Texas A&M University, and he was a Ph.D. degree candidate at the University of Georgia.

matt tanner

Matt Tanner

Chief Financial Officer


Matt Tanner joined Alliancesphere as Chief Financial Officer in 2018 and is responsible for managing corporate strategy, financial performance, and business operations. Additionally, he oversees corporate and organizational development, treasury, administration, and technology. Matt has 11+ years of finance and operations management experience across a variety of industries. He is passionate about leading business transformations and driving business acceleration. Before joining Alliancesphere he was the Vice President of Finance of Crowchild Private Equity where he steered investment strategy, executed business acquisitions, coordinated investor relations, and managed the financial and operational performance of portfolio assets. Matt also held several corporate finance leadership positions at Orbital ATK, an aerospace and defense manufacturing company, where he was responsible for factory operations budgeting and analysis for 40 departments of over 600 employees, long-range planning and quarterly forecasting for a $250 million supply chain, and program management reporting. Prior to this, he managed the accounting department of School Improvement Network, a high-growth education technology and video production company, where he was responsible for GAAP compliance, revenue recognition, sales and partner compensation, and systems implementation. Matt holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting and Master of Business Administration degree in Corporate Finance and Business Strategy from The David Eccles School of Business at The University of Utah. He is a volunteer in the community and he lives in Atlanta with his wife and four sons.

Client Engagement Team


Brooks Barnard

Global Program Manager


Bob Butler

Client Partner


Allison Crary

Executive Assistant


Ralston McCracken

Senior Facilitator and Consultant


Phil Sack

Senior Facilitator and Consultant, APJ and China


Sean Taylor

Strategy Consultant and Client Partner

Karen Zinsmeister

Karen Zinsmeister

Senior Facilitator and Consultant

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