First Beacon Business Advisors

First Beacon Business Advisory Group is a comprised of a multidisciplinary and experienced group of business consultants who use their hands-on experience to provide in-depth and comprehensive advisory services to business owners. All of our advisors are widely recognized in their respective areas of expertise.

In addition to our principle advisors listed here, we have a network of experts ready to help in other functional areas of the business.

Meet Our Principal Advisors

Ann Coffou

Chief Operating Officer

Ann is an accomplished entrepreneur with more than 30 years’ experience in technology-based businesses. Beginning her career selling for IBM she transitioned to internal IT management positions at two multi-billion dollar enterprises. In 1993, Ann co-founded J. Hammitt Group (JHG), a consulting firm specializing in IT project management and organizational issues for F500 companies. In 1995, she sold JHG to Giga Information Group where she created, launched and managed the global Y2K practice, joined the senior management team and became the Vice President of Marketing and Business Development. She expanded the company into Southeast Asia by establishing partnerships with technology companies in Japan. Giga went public in 1998 and was sold to Forrester Research in 2003.

Following Giga, Ann co-founded JEMM Corp., a developer and marketer of proprietary SaaS products for small business financing, valuation, growth and transition planning. Recruited by a healthcare data analytics company in 2007, Ann renamed, rebranded and relaunched the company to enable them to compete in new markets. Ann is a published author, experienced public speaker and company evangelist. She holds a B.A. in Business Administration from Winona State University.

Bob Gustafson

Co-Founder & Certified Financial Planner

Bob is a serial entrepreneur and has been involved in the financial services industry for more than 25 years. He began his career in 1991 with a Denver-based investment banking firm, went on to work for a major financial services firm and, subsequently, founded his own independent, fee-based advisory firm in 1995.

Bob holds the certified financial planner (CFP©) designation and works with individuals and business owners in a fiduciary capacity to help them grow and protect wealth.

Past Chairman of the Marlboro Chamber of Commerce board of directors, Bob has also served on the board of directors with the Northern New England chapter of the Financial Planning Association.

Bob graduated from the University of Massachusetts with a degree in general business finance. He is a radio talk show host for the “Financial Focus” show heard on WCRN and is one of the founding members of First Beacon Business Advisors. Some of Bob’s interests and passions include fishing, kayaking, and softball.

Debra Murphy

Marketing Coach & Consultant

With more than 25 years of experience in marketing, Debra specializes in helping businesses create a powerful web presence. Her extensive background in computer science and marketing enables her to help business owners better understand the complexities of online marketing, including search, social and content marketing.

Debra worked in corporate marketing at various high technology companies, holding positions in product management and marketing. She has held the position of Director of Marketing & Business Development at a company producing content management software and was VP of Marketing at a software security startup.

Debra holds a B.S. in Computer Science and Mathematics from Framingham State University and an M.B.A. from Worcester Polytechnic Institute. She frequently blogs and contributes to thought-leading resources like Business2Community and Social Media Today. Debra is a marketing coach, author and trusted advisor for the small business community.

Steve Powers


Steve has more than 20 years of experience in the field of research and development, particularly in the areas of mechanical and electrical engineering, plus software development. In 2001, Steve joined Intrepid Advisors. He spent 14 years as Vice President of Engineering at O.S. Walker Company of Worcester, Massachusetts. He served as the firm’s Managing Director while the company operated as a subsidiary of Carlin Charron & Rosen LP and became President after acquiring the business in early 2009.

Steve holds a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst and an M.B.A. from Anna Maria College. He is a member of Tau Beta Pi Engineering Society, Society of Manufacturing Engineering and the Society of Plastics Engineers. Steve is a co-founder of First Beacon Business Advisors.

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The team guided our company through a multi-year R&D Tax Credit project that recovered significant R&D Tax Credit refunds for our company.

Kirby O'Malley, President
First Beacon Business Advisory Group LinkedIn Company Page

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