Black Dog Venture Partners Team

Scott Kelly

Scott Kelly, Founder and CEO

Scott Kelly Founder and CEO of Black Dog Venture Partners, is a 25 year fundraising, marketing, sales, training and publicity veteran. Scott has raised millions of dollars in capital for disruptive companies, garnered national media coverage for hundreds of regional and national brands and generated millions of dollars in revenues for the companies he has represented.

He has also trained over 1,000 sales people and has taught marketing at the university level in the United States and Europe.

When not making his clients famous, Scott spends his time in countless sporting events with his wife and two boys. He loves a good craft beer and playing with his “Black Dog” Shamus.


• Raised $4 billion in public and private capital for corporate clients.
• Founder and CEO of top public relations, digital marketing agency.
• Secured over 10,000 TV, Radio, Print and Online interviews for clients.
• Developed a social media reach of over 8 million.
• Frequent speaker and lecturer on PR and Digital Marketing.
• Experienced in management and financial consulting, marketing support, sales training, seminar and conference development.
• Started and operated businesses in Russia, India, Central and South America.
• Provided investment portfolio services for over 1,000 clients.
• Trained over 1,000 investment executives.
• Provided venture capital and media relation services for dozens of start-up, development stage and public companies.

Honors and Awards
• Arizona Excellence Award Small Business Institute for Excellence in Commerce (SBIEC) September 2013
• Service Above Self Award Chandler Rotary Club April 2012
• Ranking Arizona Top Marketing Firm Selection February 2012
• Volunteer of The Year Junior Achievement Of Arizona September 2011

Master’s Degree – San Francisco State University
Bachelor’s Degree – Adelphi University

Suzi Headshot

Susan Grantham, Director of Business Development

Susan Grantham, has a long history of achievement. Having risen through the ranks of several companies through hard work and determination, Grantham eventually served as Vice President of Development for a Washington D.C. firm, making her one of the youngest female vice-presidents in the area.

Over the years, Ms. Grantham has received certificates and awards educationally, professionally and as a volunteer. During her time as Director of Marketing for a wellness company, also in the DC region, she was recognized as one of the “Women in the Community Who Make a Difference” by the Carroll County Times and appeared on the front page of the Washington Post for her efforts.

Grantham even founded her own business solutions company, and then, deeply committed to a positive and productive business environment, created an associated conference hub.

Throughout her career, she’s cultivated her natural abilities by serving in leadership roles in many community organization, including educational bodies: school board director, as president of a parent-teacher-student organization, the Pennsylvania School Board Association and the National School Board Association.

While Chairman of the Academy of Certified Pharmacy Technicians, under the Pennsylvania Pharmacist Association, she participated in decisions on policy, professional practices, public relations and education and organized ongoing education seminars and speaking programs.

In her long-standing relationship with Kiwanis International she’s been active in leadership roles in various districts: Pennsylvania in Community Service, Capital (Maryland, Delaware, District of Columbia & Virginia) as Membership Growth Chair and in Southwest District (Arizona, New Mexico and El Paso, Texas) as Board President.

Following the Japanese principle of Kaizen, continual improvement, she has completed many courses in subjects that add value to her clients’ experiences, such as: motivation, business retention, international business, marketing and quality management.

Ms. Grantham stays connected with the business community by joining a variety of organizations that promote commerce and professionalism; Toastmasters, chambers of commerce, business women’s groups, etc. – thirteen at last count.

However, as devoted as she is to her business career, she is not one-dimensional at all. For pleasure, she pursues acting and golf. It brings a whole new level to her ebullient personality and accentuates her confident, upbeat personality. She is a natural-born business-woman with all the aptitudes for continued success.



Dan Creed, Business Coach and GrowSouthwest COO

Dan Creed is an award winning international business and executive coach, entrepreneur, best-selling author, world class keynote & workshop speaker, trusted advisor and (COO) Chief Operating Officer and (CCO) Chief Coaching officer of GrowSouthwest. Coach Dan is based in Phoenix, but works with a worldwide customer base. He is a recognized expert in sales, management, marketing, business development and business growth strategies. Dan is an elite Brian Tracy International Certified Sales Trainer and a Founding Member Trainer and Facilitator of the Brian Tracy Sales Success Intensive course and a licensed facilitator for Navigational Coaching Conversations, Strategic Coaching Skills for Leaders.

Jerry Heikens

Jerry Heikens, Event Logistics and Community Relations

Jerry Heikens works as a nonprofit business consultant, specializing in the start-up process of obtaining a 501(c)(3)status. He also assists organizations with strategic visioning, business development, case statement development, board development, governance & compliance, promotions & public relations and special events.

He founded the Phoenix Philanthropists, a tax-exempt philanthropic organization serving the greater Phoenix metro area. They received their 501(c)(3) status in December 2010.

Jerry has a background in human resources and administration, as well as community and public relations.

Specialties: Nonprofit governance & compliance, business development, strategic visioning, case statement for philanthropic support development, public relations, event planning and nonprofit vetting for those interested in knowing what nonprofits are meeting the best business standards that are expected of them.


Kristi Trinner, Editor and Digital Marketing Expert

Kristi Trinner is a Lifestyle Blogger and Brand Ambassador. She blogs about health and fitness, tech and social, and everything in between.

She teachs small businesses how to effectively use Social Media and shows which platform is the best for their business. She also builds WordPress websites, designs graphics around a brand’s core identity, and creates stunning print and web materials.

She writes and edita content for articles, newsletters, web content, and blogs. She is also a technical editor for government contracts and is vastly experienced in the proposal process from the release of the RFP through the entire submittal process. She has Worked on Department of Defense proposals and documents.

Nina Louhelainen, Brand Ambassador

Nina Louhelainen is an experienced and award winning Model and Brand Ambassador. She is also a Financial and Customer Service Professional with a wide international work experience. She has successfully been able to grow the sales of multiple international brands with her promotional, modeling and sales skills. She has been awarded in several international beauty awards and has also been awarded in Great Place to Work-Awards that acknowledged her customer service skills, work ethic and team member skills. She has been able to make her department one of the most profitable units in her former workplace.