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Helpful Hints, Kitchen

Recipe: Lemon Zest Spiced Potato Cubes

Courtesy of our friends at Le Creuset, here’s a delightful appetizer to inaugurate your newly remodeled kitchen. These bite-sized fried potato chunks are the perfect tapas recipe, with a decidedly Spanish flair.

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Executive Leadership Team

  Mike Bornhorst

Chief Executive Officer
Mike Bornhorst


In March 2013, DirectBuy welcomed Mike Bornhorst as Chief Executive Officer. Mike maintains a notable record of success in domestic and international business development, and in consumer and commercial multi-media marketing. Best known for his managerial courage, financial acumen, and solutions development, Mike has 20+ years of domestic and global career work including various roles with ADT Security Services, and as Executive Vice President of Culligan International (North America).

Through Mike’s vision and leadership, DirectBuy has transitioned to a more consumer-focused business model based on the tenets of savings, selection, and services. At the heart of the business’ transition is an omni-channel marketing and sales evolution, as well as a new approach to member enrollment.

"While DirectBuy has been around for more than 45 years, it is a time of significant change for the company. There are many exciting changes underway that will reshape the way consumers interact with and benefit from DirectBuy," said CEO Mike Bornhorst. “There has been great progress made, and there’s more strategic optimizations in the works for future implementation.”

Mike earned his undergraduate degree from Xavier University and holds an MBA from Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business. He and his wife, along with their four children, reside in Georgia.

Hear more from Mike on YouTube

  Kevin McKeon

Chief Financial Officer
Kevin McKeon

Kevin McKeon joined DirectBuy in March of 2011 as Chief Financial Officer. He has responsibility for all corporate financial matters including accounting, accounts payable, Beta Finance, human resources, membership processing, and risk management.

Kevin came to DirectBuy with an impressive background in senior-level roles both in public accounting and in the consumer products industry. His career began in Auditing with positions at two national accounting firms. He then spent more than a decade with the Home Shopping Network, starting as assistant controller and then earning a promotion to CFO. Before he joined DirectBuy, Kevin served as the CFO of Thane International, a direct response marketing company.

A Certified Public Accountant, Kevin holds a Bachelor of Science in Accounting from the University of Florida. He is an avid sports fan. Interestingly, his wife and son both graduated from archrival Florida State University, which makes football season interesting in the McKeon household. Speaking of the other type of football, Kevin’s daughter attended Furman University on a soccer scholarship.

Joe Yast 

Vice President and General Counsel
Joe Yast

When Joe Yast came onboard as DirectBuy’s Vice President and General Counsel in January 2007, he had already been an important part of the DirectBuy family for more than 30 years. In the mid-1970s, Joe worked in receiving and warehouse at the original showroom in Highland, Indiana.

Now, as an integral part of DirectBuy’s executive leadership team, Joe’s role is to defend and protect the company. In his tenure, he has successfully guided the company through several years of major claims asserted against it. Joe actively handles all litigation matters, reviews and approves contract matters, addresses member and franchisee issues, oversees compliance, and provides general legal advice to various departments. He also helps make corporate policy and identifies and resolves issues affecting the company.

A cum laude graduate of the University of Chicago Law School, Joe held a postgraduate position as Law Clerk to a Justice of the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts in Boston. He soon entered private law practice with Lord, Bissell & Brook in Chicago in 1978, where he specialized in business and commercial litigation and later became a partner. In 1992, he opened his own successful business litigation practice, The Law Office of C. Joseph Yast, where DirectBuy was a client.

Jim OKeefe 

Vice President of Merchandising
Jim O’Keefe

DirectBuy named Jim O’Keefe as Vice President of Merchandising on May 15, 2013. Jim’s objective in this role is to ensure that DirectBuy’s product offering not only provides outstanding value, but also is current and representative of what our members want most. He seeks to bring a well-rounded assortment of merchandise to our members at attractive price points. His proven ability to drive compelling value in highly competitive markets makes him an excellent fit for this position.

Jim originally joined the DirectBuy team in 2010 as Director of Merchandising in charge of the Electronics category. Jim’s success at DirectBuy has stemmed from his development and management of supplier relationships, but came to DirectBuy with a rich background in merchandising. He held previous leadership positions with McMaster-Carr Supply Company, True Value Company, and OfficeMax – roles in which he was responsible for marketing, merchandising, and purchasing activities, as well as providing analysis to executive leadership to help identify risks and opportunities for improvement.

Jim holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from the University of Illinois-Urbana/Champaign. He also studied at the University of Seville in Spain. Jim currently resides with his wife and two children in suburban Chicagoland.

Connect with Jim on LinkedIn

Curt Hilliard 

Chief Marketing Officer and Executive Vice President of Sales
Curt Hilliard

In early 2013, DirectBuy welcomed Curt Hilliard as Chief Marketing Officer and Executive Vice President of Sales. Known for being a change leader and innovator, Curt is responsible for DirectBuy’s overall marketing strategy for North America. This includes lead-to-sale inbound and outbound marketing operations, digital marketing strategy and brand management. Curt manages the company’s diversified omni-channel sales process, and is responsible for a team of more than 40 professionals who are accountable for both centralized and distributed membership creation.

Curt joined DirectBuy with a rich background in multinational sales and marketing for company-owned and franchised organizations. His accomplishments are extensive and include contributions to reorganization efforts, new product launches, comp plans, pricing model development, focus on recurring revenue, and centralization of marketing spends – all with improved results.

Curt was previously employed as Senior Vice President of Marketing at Culligan International, where he successfully led brand management, business development, interactive/web, public relations and product management. He managed sales responsibilities for their national accounts and wholesale divisions of the company, and also concepted and piloted Culligan’s North America call center. Prior to joining Culligan, Curt was Corporate Vice President of Commercial Sales for ADT Security. This $350M revenue division served clients through distributed field operations over his 16-year tenure.

Curt is an alumnus of Washington State University (#GoCougs) where he earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Advertising Communications and Business Marketing. An outdoor enthusiast, Curt spends his free time surfing, skiing and mountain biking in and around Huntington Beach, California, where he resides with his wife Shelly and their two sons.

Connect with Curt on LinkedIn

Dylan Astle 

Vice President of Member Experience
Dylan Astle

DirectBuy appointed Dylan Astle as Vice President of Member Experience in May of 2013. In this position, Dylan oversees and develops the membership experience through programs in corporate departments including Merchandise Services, Concierge Shopping, Member Relations & Care, UCCD, Catalog, and Field Service.

A longtime DirectBuy employee, Dylan has had the unique opportunity to contribute at the club level. Under his leadership as Service Manager, the former El Paso (TX) club achieved a 5-star rating and was recognized as the #2 club of 165 in the franchise network for superior service. Dylan joined the Corporate team in 2007, quickly providing great value to the organization with his knowledge of applied service processes in the field. He continued to take on additional responsibilities as he created more effective processes for the entire network. In his evolving role, Dylan’s responsibilities have included training and development, recruiting, and hiring. He has overseen multiple transitions from a franchised location to a corporate-owned operation. In this work, Dylan has encountered a more than 400% increase in members supported through his initiatives on a national level, resulting in an 80% growth in staffing within the Concierge Shopping and Member Relations teams.

Prior to his career with DirectBuy, Dylan gained retail management experience at both Wal-Mart and Restoration Hardware. As a young professional, Dylan spent two years living in Chile in a missionary capacity, guiding more than 200 full-time volunteer representatives in the areas of communication, leadership, and administration. While there, he learned to speak Spanish fluently.

Dylan received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Advertising, Marketing and Management from Brigham Young University, and his Associate of Science degree in International Business from Utah Valley State College. Dylan is a motivator, educator, and mentor and inspires many constituents in both his professional and personal life. He’s married with four bright children.

Connect with Dylan on LinkedIn

Armin Roeseler 

Chief Information Officer
Armin Roeseler

As the CIO of DirectBuy, Armin leads all technical aspects of the digital transformation of the business. He joined the company in 2013 and immediately made an impact. He has consolidated multiple data centers into a cloud environment and rolled-out a corporate-wide business intelligence platform. Most notably, Armin led a team to develop DirectBuy’s retail mobile shopping app with patent-pending image recognition technology – a feature members affectionately know as “I Want That!”

Under his leadership, the DirectBuy Information Technology department was ranked #25 on the 2016 InformationWeek Elite 100 list for innovative uses of business technology. Armin also received the 2016 CIO 100 Award.

Prior to his current role with DirectBuy, Armin held C-Level technology leadership positions with international financial services firms. He started his career as a systems analyst with AT&T Bell Labs.

Armin holds an M.S. in Computer and Information Science from New Jersey Institute of Technology, where he was a Fulbright Scholar, and a Ph.D. in Computer Science from Illinois Institute of Technology. He is a U.S. Patent holder, published author, and has lectured at international conferences in the U.S., Europe and Australia.

A native born German, Armin now calls Chicago home.

Connect with Armin on LinkedIn

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