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The Power of Ownership

FUEL is a community of entrepreneurs, investors and advisors who support the holistic growth of high-capacity CEOs and their businesses, for the benefit of the greater good.


For high-capacity visionaries who are teachable, passionate and hungry to create lasting change, we offer:

  • A dedicated team of strategic advisors committed to the ongoing holistic health of the CEO through mentoring and discipleship, as well as technical and operational oversight
  • Best-In-Class curriculum and training
  • Access to our national impact investor network, accelerating the pitching and fundraising timeline


For impact investors who revere fiscal discipline, social impact, strong leadership and revenue potential, we offer:

  • Access to businesses that have proven growth potential and are on a path to financial self-sustainability, led by high-capacity leaders
  • Rigorous due diligence process in order to reduce risk for company performance and your investment
  • Optimized multiple returns (financial, cultural, Kingdom)


For proven servant leaders and subject-matter experts who are personally committed to growing great companies and owners, we offer:

  • Connection with a community of peers and business leaders, along with an elevated visibility of your brand and skill set
  • Meaningful contribution to the growth of emerging leaders and companies
  • Potential profit via options based on your contribution to each company’s success
  • Dick Gygi
    Dick Gygi (Advisor)

    Dick is a Founding Partner of FUEL. He has served as a President of a number of consumer products companies for over 40 years, most recently as the President of PlusMark, a subsidiary of American Greetings, the world-wide leader of seasonal gift wrap. As a co-founder of ThriftSmart and founding Board Member of the Nashville SEA, he has been active in Social Entrepreneurship since 2005. Married to Bonni for 49 years, they have four adult children and seven grandchildren, and together actively serve with Built2Last as Marriage Coaches.

  • Matt Gerber
    Matt Gerber (Advisor)

    Matt has over 20 years of senior management, consulting, and executive experience. As a President, COO, and CAO, he has led award winning technology and consumer goods companies in Tennessee, Indiana, Utah, and California. Matt has the proven ability to integrate extensive leadership, IT industry knowledge, and operational experience to meet business objectives. Matt has a B.S. degree with a double major in Business Management and Biblical Studies. He has been married to Amber for over 26 years; they have lived all over the USA, but settled in the Nashville area in 2017 and enjoy serving Christ in their community and Long Hollow Baptist Church.

  • Jeff Schulte
    Jeff Schulte (Advisor)

    Jeff Schulte invests deeply in the lives of leaders and the organizations and teams they lead. He is also a best-selling author, sought after communicator, and YPO facilitator. Jeff has served in senior leadership roles on multiple boards and in a variety of organizations, three of which he started, and one with global reach that grew from four people to 4000. Jeff graduated from Yale University where he majored in organizational behavior and sociology, has three earned masters degrees (all with high honors), and is a licensed professional counselor.

  • Steve Burgess
    Steve Burgess (Advisor)

    Steve is a serial entrepreneur who, with his wife Michelle, started Guidant Partners 28 years ago, an IT Managed Service company in Nashville, TN. Steve has great experience leading teams, especially through seasons of transition. He is passionate about helping Michelle impact businesses through the “SIMPL” model (Strategy, Implementation, Money, People and Legacy).

  • Garrett Cooper
    Garrett Cooper (Advisor)

    Gary is a Founding Partner of FUEL. He has a background in overseeing investments and acquisitions, and is focused on developing high-capacity leaders. Gary has served as Chief Operating Officer and Chief Strategist for Ambassador Enterprises, a for profit philanthropic private equity company. He holds the Chartered Financial Analyst designation and led a team responsible for the investment and risk management of portfolios exceeding $40 billion for the Lincoln Financial Group. He and his wife, Jennifer, have been married for 45 years; they have three grown children and nine grandchildren.

  • Margaret Morford
    Margaret Morford (Advisor)

    Margaret is CEO for The HR Edge, Inc., an international management consulting and training company. Her clients have included Lockheed Martin, Chevron, Time Warner, HGTV, Nationwide Insurance, Homeland Security, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Vanderbilt University, among others. Previously, Margaret has worked as an attorney, specializing in employment law. A published author and an industry thought leader, she has been quoted in publications including Wall Street Journal, New York Times and Entrepreneur.

  • John Gonas
    John Gonas (Advisor)

    John an Associate Professor at Belmont University, teaching Corporate Finance, Investment Portfolio Management, and Economics. Dr. Gonas joined Belmont’s faculty in 1998 after working in the investment banking industry for eight years. His research interests include asset pricing efficiency, investment portfolio performance, social entrepreneurship, and the economics of charitable giving – publishing in The Journal of Corporate Finance, The Financial Review, and The Journal of Financial Planning. Dr. Gonas has stewarded hundreds of students in the development and implementation of social entrepreneurial business models, one of which (Spring Back Recycling) is celebrating 5 years of sustainability and is licensing across the U.S.


FUEL Operations and Investment Model


Qualifications for Entrepreneurs and Advisors


FUEL Core Beliefs and Principles



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