Our Team

Ryan Daube
Founder/CEO

Ryan’s focus is on leading growth at AFN by ensuring that our team is always at the forefront of advising customers on how to most efficiently transport their goods within the constantly changing logistics market.  As someone who enjoys working with numbers and solving problems, Ryan fell in love with this dynamic industry during his first job, right out of college.  Four years later, he co-founded AFN to put his leadership skills and interests to work building a unique logistics company that is squarely focused on putting the client first.  Ryan is actively involved in several community and charitable initiatives, including Rolfe Pancreatic Cancer Foundation and Young Presidents’ Organization (YPO).  Prior to founding AFN, he worked as a customer sales representative for American Backhaulers.  He graduated from Indiana University.

AFN President BarnettBlaine Barnett
President

Blaine has over fifteen years of comprehensive sales, operations, marketing, and business management experience with expertise in product and technology innovation and operational efficiency. At AFN, Blaine leads all day-to-day operations as we continue to build our reputation and stature as one of the country’s premier logistics providers. Prior to joining AFN, Blaine worked in several strategy, sales, technology product development and customer satisfaction leadership roles in the consumer, commercial, and international divisions of Life Fitness. His experience there, coupled with his time managing large stores at Restaurant Depot, has given him insights as both a receiver and shipper of product in manufacturing and retail environments. He credits these experiences as critical in developing skills his role at AFN requires. Blaine is a graduate of Northwestern University and earned his MBA at the University of Chicago.

Mike Nervick, Dounder, AFNMichael Nervick
Founder

Michael began his logistics career as a carrier sales representative for American Backhaulers in 1996.  Building on his success, Michael co-founded AFN in 2003 with Ryan Daube, growing AFN into one of the top 30 full service third party logistics providers.  Michael has built great relationships with many of the best carriers in the nation over the years as a pioneer of the concept of treating carriers like clients and is well known within AFN for his “sharpening the axe” philosophy of continuous improvement.  Today, Michael remains a stakeholder with a vested interest in our success and actively networks in the business community through memberships in The Economic Club of Chicago and other organizations.  He earned his BA at the University of Wisconsin and attended the Chicago Management Institute at The Booth School of Business.

Adam Wakefield
Vice President of National Accounts

As the Vice President of National Accounts, Adam will be ensuring AFN’s commitment to fostering long term relationships with our clients. His responsibilities include implementing account strategies to service existing top accounts and deliver on our brand promise. In his role, Adam is continuously developing better ways to deliver superior solutions to our core customers.  Innovation and process improvement are therefore always at the top of his agenda. Adam credits his strategic problem-solving skills to years spent in athletics and compares game planning for sports to strategy planning for business.  He has worked in the logistics industry for more than a decade and, prior to his current role, held numerous positions within AFN as well as other leading companies in the industry. Adam graduated from Valparaiso University.

Chad McGinn
Chief Financial Officer

Chad joined AFN as CFO in 2004.  His previous position, as a regional finance manager responsible for a $100 million division at a construction rental company, prepared him well for running the finance and accounting functions at AFN.  Chad also manages AFN’s relationships with banks, IT service providers, independent auditors and benefit vendors and was involved in the site selection and initial planning of our facility. Chad loves the game of golf for its traditions, including honor and integrity, so much that his kids start swinging clubs as soon as they can walk.  He earned a BBA in Accounting from St. Norbert College.

Jared Palmer
General Counsel and Director of Security

Jared leads our recently combined Client Services and Legal Departments. In this role, he leads the logistics coordination and legal teams to focus on the strategic implementation of proprietary risk management processes so that shipments reach their intended destinations. During Jared’s tenure, he has helped distinguish AFN as an industry leader in theft prevention of high value and high risk commodities. He also developed and launched the AFN Strategic Partnership Summit, a unique annual gathering where shippers and carriers exchange information about industry issues. Jared is an adjunct professor of transportation law at his alma mater, Chicago-Kent College of Law. Prior to acquiring his JD, he graduated as a Founders Scholar recipient from the Kelley School of Business at Indiana University. Jared serves as chairman of the Government Affairs Committee for the National Cargo Theft Task Force and is a member of the CargoNet Advisory Committee. He has authored numerous articles on cargo theft, logistics, insurance, and risks affecting the logistics industry and is actively involved in federal lobbying efforts in Washington, D.C.

Director of BI & Strategic Development

Kirk Purcell
Director of Strategic Planning & Business Intelligence

As Director of Strategic Planning & Business Intelligence, Kirk will partner with the executive team to develop and drive AFN’s long-range strategic programs. He has over twenty years of business experience as both an operations professional and an entrepreneur. Kirk was most recently with BP, where he spent the last twelve years in roles of increasing responsibility within their Finance, Operations and Strategy functions. His vast experience in financial analysis, project management, transportation and operations will be a tremendous asset to AFN and the strategic planning process. Kirk holds an MBA from the University of Illinois at Chicago and a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater.

VP - IT, Peter MallingPeter Malling
Vice President of Information Technology

Peter has over 20 years of experience designing, developing, implementing and supporting IT solutions in manufacturing, telecommunications and healthcare companies.  He has built, managed and mentored teams across multiple disciplines in IT including software developers, business analysts, networking engineers, system administrators, telecommunications administrators and business intelligence architects.  Peter applies this broad range of experience to creating systems that strengthen AFN’s relationship with both customers and carriers.  Peter graduated from Northwestern University with a BA in Computer Studies.

AFN Director Carrier Sales and Operations NesselBrian Nessel
Director of Carrier Sales and Operations

Brian leads AFN’s Carrier Sales and Operations.  On the Carrier Sales side, his goals are to provide premier logistics solutions to our carrier base through leadership development, profitability improvement and high levels of customer service while directing the team to build strategic long term carrier partnerships.  On the Operations side, Brian leads our efforts to deliver premier logistics solutions to AFN’s customers through strategic planning, leadership development, and overall direction of the operations team by collaborating with internal and external parties to ensure AFN meets and exceeds customer expectations.  A self-described “die hard” sports fan, Brian spends considerable time following his favorite teams.  He joined AFN in June 2006, after graduating from Indiana University Bloomington where he earned a BA in Communication and Media Studies and a Minor in Business.

Vice President of HR - Jillian LeeJillian Lee
Vice President of Human Resources

Jillian leads AFN’s Human Resources function and plays a key role in helping drive the company’s organizational effectiveness priorities through a focus on talent acquisition and talent management. Throughout her career, Jillian has proven to be a business leader who builds strong partnerships that help shape strategy and drive results, while implementing best-in-class human resources solutions.  She has over 12 years of progressive human resources experience with Brunswick Corporation, where she most recently served as a strategic business partner for the Bowling & Billiards division.  Her experience with Brunswick, coupled with previous roles in legal and customer service, has given her a unique perspective of business, allowing her to create HR programs with risk, operations and the customer in mind. Jillian earned a bachelor’s degree in philosophy from Binghamton University, where she graduated summa cum laude.