What Does It Take to Be an Exceptional Family Business CEO?

In a session moderated by Brooke Anderson and Jeffrey Kane of BDO, Mariah Weyland Gratz, CEO of Weyland Ventures; Robert Underbrink, president and CEO of King Ranch Inc.; and Todd Schurz, president and CEO of Schurz Communications, Inc., will offer insights into what it takes to achieve true leadership success.

Wednesday, November 11, 2020
2 p.m. ET | 11 a.m. PT
60 minutes


In our November/December 2020 edition, Family Business Magazine recognizes a diverse group of family business CEOs for their exceptional leadership. To complement this special feature, we asked three of the CEOs to join us for a webinar discussion on the unique challenges and opportunities in leading a family business.

In a session moderated by Brooke Anderson and Jeffrey Kane of BDO, Mariah Weyland Gratz, CEO of Weyland Ventures; Robert Underbrink, president and CEO of King Ranch, Inc.; and Todd Schurz, president and CEO of Schurz Communications, Inc., will address the following questions and respond to audience questions and comments:

  • What are the characteristics required to be a successful CEO of a family-owned business?
  • What makes family businesses different to lead than other types of businesses?
  • What governance systems do you rely on for both the family and the business?
  • What do you wish you had known before you took your present position?
  • What advice do you have for your eventual successor? How should he/she prepare for family business leadership?

If you are the CEO of a family-owned business or aspire to lead your family company, this webinar will offer insights into what it takes to achieve true leadership success.

Family Business Magazine’s “Family Business CEOs To Watch” is made possible through the sponsorship of BDO.



Mariah Weyland Gratz

CEO, Weyland Ventures

Mariah, the CEO of Weyland Ventures, was born and raised in Louisville, KY.  After studying biomedical engineering at Washington University in St. Louis and Imperial College of Science, Technology, and Medicine in London, England, Mariah worked in medical device product development at ABIOMED, Inc for six years.  However, in April 2009 she moved back to Louisville to go to work in her father’s business and apply her product development skills to a new product… real estate. Originally responsible for leading a cross-functional development team in the planning, design, and construction of urban real estate development projects, Mariah has held leadership positions in various departments of the organization. Mariah completed her MBA in August 2016 at the University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill.
Mariah and her husband Eric reside in the Highlands neighborhood in Louisville with their 2 children. A lifelong athlete, Mariah enjoys staying active. She also serves on several community boards, including the Louisville Downtown Management District and the Patty and Mildred Hill Happy Birthday Park Board.
Weyland Ventures is a multi-disciplinary real estate development firm known for creating unique mixed-use properties in urban areas across the nation. Considered experts in the use of historic tax credits, new market credits and other layered financing methods the company is able to tackle tough projects that typically wouldn’t be considered viable to other firms.


Robert Underbrink

President & CEO, King Ranch, Inc.

Robert J. Underbrink graduated in 1983 from Texas A&M University-Kingsville where he received a Bachelor of Science in agriculture (cum laude). Robert was hired by King Ranch, Inc. in 1984 as a management trainee and traveled to various operations in the United States and throughout South America and Australia. In 1987, he assumed the responsibility as general manager of Florida operations. As part of an expansion of the Florida operations, King Ranch, Inc., acquired citrus groves in 1994. The board of directors of King Ranch, Inc. appointed Robert as vice president of farming operations in June 1998. He was then appointed as senior vice president in March 2008 and in June 2010, was appointed as president/CEO, as well as a director. He also currently serves as a director of Consolidated Citrus Limited Partnership, the nation’s largest citrus grower, where he previously served as president and CEO from 1999 to 2005. Consolidated Citrus Limited Partnership is owned and managed by King Ranch Inc.


Todd Schurz

President & CEO, Schurz Communications

Todd F. Schurz has served as President and Chief Executive Officer of Schurz Communications, Inc. since July 1, 2007. Schurz Communications, Inc. (SCI) is a diversified, fifth-generation, privately-owned media, broadband and cloud commu-nications company. Geographically, SCI has a presence in Arizona, Indiana, Maryland, Michigan, Missouri, Minnesota, Nebraska, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Texas, Australia and England.

Schurz joined Schurz Communications Inc. in 1989 and has served in a number of roles, including managing publishing and television operations. He was born in San Francisco, Calif., graduated from Brown University in 1983 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in History and Economics, and later received his Master of Business Administration in 1989 from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania with majors in marketing and manage-ment.

Schurz currently serves on the boards of the Herschend Enterprises as lead independent director, News Media Alliance, American Press Institute, Beacon Health Foundation, and Uni-versity of Notre Dame College of Arts & Letters advisory council. He has served on the boards of the CBS Television Network Affiliates Association, Hoosier State Press Association’s Foun-dation (also a past president), and Mutual Insurance Company Limited. He is a former Chair of the Memorial Hospital board, the Chamber of Commerce of St. Joseph County, the Poynter In-stitute’s National Advisory Board, and the coordinating committee for the Regional Approach to Progress. He has served on numerous other community organization boards, including United Way, Project Future and the Community Foundation.


Brooke Anderson

Tax Office Managing Principal; Private Client Services Central Region Leader, BDO

Brooke Anderson is responsible for overseeing the growth of the Pittsburgh office with a focus on exceptional client service, development of professionals and strengthened relationships in the local community. In addition, she serves as the managing director of BDO’s central region Private Client Services practice.
Brooke has advised and provided consulting services to clients for more than 10 years. Her knowledge includes working with affluent clients in the areas of trust administration, fiduciary responsibility, gift taxation, generation-skipping transfer taxation and estate taxation and planning. Her experience has focused on assessing current situations, identifying risks and proposing possible solutions to achieve the most optimal results.
Brooke has spoken on various estate tax topics and has been quoted in several publications. She has also served as a guest lecturer at the University of Pittsburgh and was a participant in Leadership Pittsburgh’s Leadership Development Initiative XVII.
Jeffrey Kane

National Managing Partner; Global Private Client Services Centre of Excellence Chair, BDO

Jeff Kane has more than 40 years of experience providing financial and tax advice to high-net-worth individuals and their families as well as executives of public companies. For more than 15 years, he was also the outside CFO to a Forbes 200 family as well as advising them on their income and estate tax matters.
During his career, Jeff has also been the tax advisor to businesses from start-ups and PE owned enterprises, to multi-national, multi-billion dollar companies in manufacturing, retail, real estate, and other industries.
Prior to joining BDO, Jeff led tax practices and offices in the midwest, as well as being a partner in a Private Client Service group in St. Louis. He is a member of the Business School Dean’s Advisory Board of the University of Detroit-Mercy and has served on many civic boards in the cities in which he has lived.
David Shaw

Publishing Director, Family Business Magazine

David Shaw is the publishing director of Directors & Boards and its sister publication, Family Business. With more than 30 years of experience in business-to-business and consumer media markets, he has served as an editor, publisher, publishing director, group publisher and group vice president of a variety of publications, trade shows, conferences and websites.

Prior to founding GRID Media, David served as senior vice president for Phillips Business Information Inc., where he oversaw nearly 100 discrete media properties, and helped build the business from $35 million to more than $100 million in annual revenues. He is a frequent author and speaker on issues related to business-to-business media, multi-generational family businesses and private and public company governance. He is married, with two grown children, one serving in the Navy and the other in law school.



  • No cost to attend.
  • Opportunity for questions and feedback.
  • All participants receive a copy of the webinar materials after the event.
  • All participants receive Family Business Magazine weekly newsletter, with news, tips and trends that impact your family business. You may, of course, opt out at any time.
  • Unbiased third-party family business education.
  • 60 minutes -- maximum value for time.