| October 11, 2020 | People
CS magazine is pleased to present some of the most distinguished men that are taking the Chicagoland Area by storm. These outstanding industry leaders are shaping the future of their respective fields as some of the most prominent influencers in our community.
FOUNDER + CEO
We speak to all males—we’re a guys’ brand, founded by guys.
An entrepreneur since high school and a master of merchandising—he’s worked with behemoths like Unilever—Kelley Thornton found his calling with Tiege Hanley, a subscription-based brand that takes the complexity out of skin care for men. “After spending years helping big companies figure out how to market at retail, I realized guys don’t really like to shop,” Thornton says. “This was a great opportunity to bring it online and make it simple.” Alongside two co-founders and a chemist, Thornton launched Tiege Hanley in 2016 and the company has grown astronomically—and organically, with no outside funding—since; Thornton has his sights set on hitting the $100 million mark soon. It’s been competing globally since day one, and its range of face washes, soaps, moisturizers and serums now ships to 108 countries every month. So naturally, the Tiege Hanley customer base is incredibly diverse. “We speak to all males,” Thornton says. “We’re a masculine brand and we’re not bashful about that. We’re a guys’ brand, founded by guys.” As CEO, Thornton oversees everything from the creative to the finances, and spends time educating guys on skin cancer prevention through The Skin Cancer Foundation. With that in mind, Tiege Hanley will roll out two new sun products—plus an array of chemical-free deodorants—later this year.
RIVER NORTH COLLISION REPAIR + RIVER
NORTH HAND CAR WASH
OWNER + FOUNDER
It was a continual, constant commitment to quality and customer service, and being laser-focused on every aspect of the business that set me apart.
Thirty years ago, Chicago native Mike DeMaio started River North Hand Car Wash with just $1,000. Now the premier car wash has 15 downtown locations and a spinoff business, River North Collision Repair, a body shop that services luxury vehicles with wheel and bumper repair fresh paint jobs, window tinting, detailing and more. “It was a continual, constant commitment to quality and customer service, and being laser-focused on every aspect of the business that set me apart,” DeMaio says. “For the first 10 years, I worked seven days a week.” The shop’s services are customizable and interactive. “It’s an extremely high-quality wash,” DeMaio says. “The customer gets to be involved, watch us do the last touches and can give us their input. We really make it a personal experience. … While it’s being washed, one of our managers is having a dialogue with the client.” That may well be DeMaio himself. He still fields all incoming calls, interacting with every client who rolls through the garage doors. “I stay on top of every aspect, never let things fall through the cracks,” he says. “That’s required to be successful in today’s business atmosphere.” And River North Hand Car Wash and Collision Repair will be a mainstay for decades to come: This year, DeMaio’s son Billy joined him in the family business.
I’m more than just a real estate broker—I’m a friend, a resource, a concierge. It’s a lifelong relationship.
Hailing from a small town in Indiana, Bruce Glazer was drawn to the hustle and bustle of Chicago from a young age. He dove headfirst into real estate straight out of college, at the time becoming the youngest broker to be hired at a Chicago firm. He harnessed the power of high-tech marketing initiatives and digital advertising to establish a client base, and his rise was meteoric: In 2018, he sold more than $35 million in real estate as an individual broker. Most teams don’t sell that much. As an individual broker, Bruce is able to offer his clients one on one support knowing that when they hire him they won’t be passed off to someone else on the team. When you hire Bruce, you get Bruce. “My typical client is anywhere from a first-time homebuyer to very luxury high-end real estate,” Glazer says. “It’s a broad spectrum, but I enjoy working with everybody at different price ranges.” And Glazer is on call all the time. “In residential real estate, we don’t work 9 to 5; we work when everybody else doesn’t work,” he says. “You have to be super attentive to your clients, and that’s something I take pride in.”
Always dressed sharply in a suit, he looks the part and gives off an infectious positive energy. “I’m more than just a real estate broker,” he says. “I’m a friend, a resource, a concierge; it’s a lifelong relationship.” Bruce is always mindful of ways to give back to a mission that is close to his heart and the heart of so many others and this year Bruce plans to donate a portion of his commissions to the Indiana University Cancer Center in memory of his Grandfathers.
OWNER + CUTTING DIRECTOR
All my life I was willing to take chances … that set the tone for the rest of my career.
Beauty industry veteran Daniel Janicek has always been a risk-taker. “All my life, I was willing to take chances,” he says. “Going to cosmetology school as a straight male is a rare thing, and that set the tone for the rest of my career.” After school, Janicek rose through the ranks at Elizabeth Arden Red Door salon, becoming the cutting director at just 25 years old. In 2016 he took another leap of faith, opening SalonDJ in the burgeoning Fulton Market District. He introduced Hairtography—an original concept in which clients can get their hair, makeup and professional head shots done under one roof—and built out a dream team of stylists. His staff of more than 20 does it all, with a specialty for men’s cuts (guys get seated in a restored 1920s barber chair, a nod to one of Janicek’s other passions: vintage cars and motorcycles).
He’s overcome many challenges along the way, but always comes back better. After a two-month shutdown earlier this year, “we came back stronger than we were before, and not just in spirit,” he says. This summer, he added four additional stylists and a new makeup artist to his team and—and also got engaged.
LEONARD GOLDBERG & ALEX KATSGIA
GIA/AGS CERTIFIED JEWELER, APPRAISER & DIAMONTOLOGIST
Our clients come back time and again because we treat them as our friends. They know we will always have something special on hand they can't find anywhere else.
Stepping into the opulent Oak Street boutique, Geneva Seal customers are met with an array of beautiful objects, from stunning Swiss timepieces to bold, one-of-a-kind jewelry pieces. But it’s not just the stellar selection that keeps them coming back—it’s the relationships they form with owners Leonard Goldberg and Alex Kats, dual faces of the luxe brand. “Our clients come back time and again because we treat them as our friends,” Kats says. “They know we will always have something special on hand they can’t—nor do they want to—find anywhere else.” Goldberg adds: “We are privileged to have many clients throughout the world who call Geneva Seal their personal jeweler.” The family-owned company has been in business for more than a half-century, beginning with wholesale diamonds. Today, Geneva Seal represents 11 luxury Swiss timepiece brands—including Hublot, Breitling and Bovet, for which Goldberg is a top brand ambassador—and more than 20 small jewelry companies. “We are a fashion-forward house focused on providing personal service and expertise to everyone who enters our elegant boutique,” says Goldberg, who is also a GIA/AGS certified jeweler, diamond expert and appraiser and has been designing jewelry for more than 25 years. “We are fortunate to have the opportunity to evolve with our clients.”
DANIEL KINKADE FINE ART
OWNER + FOUNDER
Since everyone on our staff has a degree in interior design, we speak the language our clients need us to speak.
From a young age, it was Daniel Kinkade’s dream to work with Oprah. As the founder and owner of Daniel Kinkade Fine Art—which works with high-profile interior designers, architects, developers and hoteliers to place cutting-edge art—his dream came true: He’s dressed the walls of Harpo Studios, and worked with countless other discerning clients, including Simeone-Deary Design Group, Starbucks, Nordstrom, St. Jane Chicago and Nate Berkus Associates. This year has been an especially successful one for Kinkade. “People are home and nesting,” he says. “They want to work on their environments. … Since everyone on our staff has a degree in interior design, we speak the language our clients need us to speak.” For Kinkade, being a modern man is all about seeing the world. Last year, he spent eight weeks in New Caledonia and Vanuatu, and before that it was the Seychelles and Nepal. It’s also through travel that he finds new works and connects with artists; he’s expanded his network to include hundreds of artists from around the globe. Coming up, look out for Kinkade at Intersect Chicago—the reimagined SOFA expo—where he’ll be exhibiting next year. And heed his sage advice when it comes to your own space: “Take a chance,” he says. “Art should make you feel alive.”
FRESHSKIN MEDICAL SPA & WELLNESS CENTER
WELLNESS DIRECTOR AND DOCTOR OF ACUPUNCTURE + ORIENTAL MEDICINE
Changing the numbers isn’t enough for me—I want patients to feel better and experience the benefits.
Dr. Ryan Lombardo is both the yin and yang when it comes to wellness, combining Eastern and Western practices for his patients. “Western medicine is excellent for acute care, while Eastern has proven excellent for preventative care,” he says. “Both are important, but neither are complete.” Board certified in anti-aging and integrative medicine, he has a background in psychology and nutrition and offers lifestyle counseling in addition to medical services. “Wellness is a blend of physical, psychological, emotional, spiritual, individual and social awareness,” he says. “It requires continual regulation to find a balance that is unique to each person.” When it comes to weight loss and longevity, he says, “changing the numbers isn’t enough for me. I want patients to feel better and experience the benefits. If the labs are ‘normal’ but they still don’t feel well, there’s more work to do.” At FreshSkin Medical Spa & Wellness Center, Lombardo and his colleagues have weathered the pandemic with apparent ease, going virtual for some programs but keeping in-person appointments where necessary. “Our patients are even more interested in becoming and staying healthy,” he says. The North Shore-based doc is also a lululemon ambassador and a father of two, and he practices meditation and strums the guitar daily to stay grounded. “Living daily life with purpose and passion is what I consider achievement,” he says. “I certainly have vision and goals—but I prefer staying present.”
SENIOR VP OF RESIDENTIAL LENDING
We have implemented systems that allow us to provide a service faster and with more ease than most of our competition. … We are decades ahead of the standards.
Since his college days swimming on scholarship at Northern Illinois University and running a 15-hour daily schedule, Anthony Marinaccio has been going nonstop. He’s no different today, having worked his way up the ladder to become a well-known name in the mortgage industry. “I align mortgage capital with anyone in need of funding,” he says. “With my bank relationships, I have hundreds of financing options.” He works with clients on everything from the standard mortgage loan for their primary homes to vacation homes in Aspen to multi-unit developments—and he harnesses the power of technology to stand out in the field. “We have implemented systems that allow us to provide a service faster and with more ease than most of our competition,” he says. “We do so in a way that continues evolution in tech, and we are decades [ahead of] the standards.”
In fact, tech is becoming inherent to how Marinaccio’s brain works. “The more I act like a computer taking a loan for a consumer, the faster I align with what’s to come: AI mortgage lending.” And speaking of the future, Marinaccio has big plans: He’s making his way into the development world, starting with a stunning modern farmhouse in Hinsdale, Illinois that sold last year; follow along on his next project @AZBuild2020.
BROKER ASSOCIATE, BRIDGE TEAM
There are two types of agents: Those who play a numbers game in the amount of buyers and sellers they represent … and then the relationship agents. This is where I place myself.
Personally and professionally, relationships are what’s important to Compass residential broker Shaun Moskalik. “There are two types of agents,” he says. “[Those who] play a numbers game in the amount of buyers and sellers they represent … and then the relationship agents. This is where I place myself. Buying a home is very personal, and it’s important to me that the clients not only love it, but that it is a good investment.” His focus on relationships has never mattered more than this year, as people reevaluate what they need in a home. “Clients now are working from home, teaching their children at home, working out at home,” Moskalik says. “It’s an important year to reach out to all of my clients to check in and see how they are doing.”
Whether it’s to develop a buying and selling strategy or simply listen to their concerns during a difficult time, the outreach is what matters to Moskalik. And when he’s not selling real estate, he’s strengthening other relationships by giving back—in particular to Communities In Schools, a nonprofit that provides resources to at-risk kids so they can focus on their education. “This is a big year for all of us to strengthen our community involvement,” he says. “We have a lot of work to do, and it’s time to roll up our sleeves.”
COMPASS / SPORTS & ENTERTAINMENT DIVISION, LICENSED REAL ESTATE BROKER
RM LUXURY GROUP
I treat every listing like it’s a million-dollar luxury home; no listing is too small or too big for me to handle.
Entering real estate in post-recession 2012, Rafael Murillo quickly learned the value of hard work and pure hustle. A few years later, he transitioned from mortgage banking to become an agent and applied the same tactics. Most recently, he joined Compass’ Sports & Entertainment division, which boasts a client base of professional athletes and entertainers and offers a host of concierge services. “Aside from regular real-estate services, we can assist our clients in finding interior designers, architects, moving companies, personal chefs and private car services,” he says. A recent coup? Leasing a $30,000/month luxury penthouse to one of the Chicago Cubs. Murillo’s power lays in social media—and with more than 15,000 followers, he’s one of Chicago’s most prominent agents on Instagram.
There he posts photos, videos and more that make his properties stand out. “I treat every listing like it’s a million-dollar luxury home; no listing is too small or too big for me to handle,” he says. “My listing videos have actors, luxury cars, neighborhood drone footage—they exemplify the lifestyle of the property.” Last year, he sold a home via Instagram before it even hit the MLS. And for Murillo, presentation is as important in real life as online. “A modern man understands the power of his appearance as a reflection of his character,” he says. “He takes great pride in his work and strives to give his very best every day.”
COLLIN PIERSON PHOTOGRAPHY
OWNER + PHOTOGRAPHER
The photos that I love to capture are ones that have expression. They have feeling; there’s movement and emotion and they’re not just static.
Since first picking up a camera as a kid in Kansas City, Collin Pierson has had a passion for photography. His background in photojournalism, sports photography and bridal fashion eventually led him to luxury wedding photography, where his editorial eye sets him apart. “The photos that I love to capture are ones that have expression,” Pierson says. “They have feeling; there’s movement and emotion and they’re not just static.” His stunning images—from a snowy street-lit kiss to a ballroom shot encompassing over-the-top decor—perfectly capture the essence of each of his couples. “I don’t follow trends when it comes to what I do creatively,” he says. “It’s important to create something that’s your own and unique, yet still beautiful; you want something that will look great in 20 years.”
A modern renaissance man, Pierson is also a watch and bourbon aficionado, and an integral player at Gene & Georgetti, the River North restaurant owned and operated by his wife’s family. In fact, his wife, wedding planner Michelle Durpetti, is a constant inspiration to him. “The events industry is truly one of the last to come back full force, so it has been incredibly challenging,” Pierson says. “But with every challenge comes an opportunity to expand and grow … Gene & Georgetti has been around since 1941 and now has a coffee window and outdoor dining for the first time in 79 years. Being able to evolve is really the bigger story—it’s about how you’re able to take challenges and turn them into true opportunities.”
FOUNDER + BROKER, ROC ADVISORY GROUP
I realized early on that there was a velvet rope between the commercial and residential real estate worlds, so my business model is residential-agent-centric, as opposed to client-centric.
Lovingly known in and out of the industry as K-Roc, commercial real estate broker and founder of @properties’ ROC Advisory Group Kevin Rocio does things a little differently. “I realized early on that there was a velvet rope between the commercial and residential real estate worlds, so my business model is residential-agent-centric, as opposed to client-centric,” he says. It seems to be working: Since entering the industry in 2009, Rocio has seen awards pile up, and in 2019 was recognized with achievement awards by both the Chicago and National Associations of REALTORS. This year Rocio—an analytical Capricorn and self-described Steve Urkel when it comes to numbers—has been busier than ever. For those looking for single-family homes to escape the tight quarters of high-rises during the pandemic, a smart solution is purchasing a two- to four-unit home and living in one unit, while the rent of the others offsets costs.
For larger (5+ units) apartment buildings, he’s adapted by creating virtual tours and drone video presentations for clients to view from home. In addition to his successful career, Rocio believes a modern man is one who gives back. Through his #rocgivebacks “Annual Rooftop on the River” Fundraiser, he has raised tens of thousands of dollars in the past for organizations like the Albany Park Community Center. Later this month, he will host an invite-only fundraiser at an elite Chicago penthouse to benefit Shriners Hospital for Children-Chicago.
FOUNDER & COSMETIC SURGEON
My motto for Elysium is ‘experience beauty,’ because I don’t feel that beauty is in millimeters or centimeters or number of syringes of a neurotoxin. It lies in the experience you provide your patients.
Immigrating to the United States and adapting to a new culture in 1992, Dr. Mick Singh has worked hard to be great in all that he does. From medical school at Rush University, to being a Captain as a flight surgeon in the U.S. Air Force, and his longing to be an astronaut, Dr. Mick has always had high aspirations.
Dr. Mick leans on a prolific and worldly experience to elevate his aesthetic practice, Elysium Surgispa, into an art form. “My motto for Elysium is ‘Experience Beauty,’ because beauty lies in the lasting impression provided to each patient.” At Elysium, patients enter a spa-like space of tranquility where Singh specializes in facial and body augmentation, dermal fillers as well as face and body contouring procedures, like, the new BodyTite FaceTite™ procedure which uses radio-frequency heat to tighten tissue and produce a minimally invasive surgical lift.
During the pandemic, Singh started a movement dubbed #ResponsiblySocial (responsiblysocial.org), releasing a bracelet people can wear to signal that they’re practicing social distancing.
“Masks became politicized; the whole message regarding why we wear them was forgotten,” Singh says. “This movement is a way to generate camaraderie in a time a of division.” It’s this sort of initiative that makes Singh a modern man.
The soon-to-be father says that for him, “a mark of excellence as a man is to lead by example.”
Photography by: Eva Ho Photography