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Executive Staff

  • Mr. Dennis Brown

    Dennis Brown

    VP, State Government Relations
    (202) 238-3411
    Dennis Brown serves as  Vice President of State Government Relations for the Equipment Leasing and Finance Association (ELFA), the premier trade association representing 575+ member organizations in the $827 billion equipment finance sector.
     
    Mr. Brown joined ELFA in 1993 as Vice President of State Government Relations to implement a proactive program developing and promoting ELFA positions and policy. He  has served as president of several organizations representing government relations professionals and has won the Award of Excellence in Government Relations from the American Society of Association Executives on several occasions. He has also served as a liaison to tax committees of the National Conference of State Legislatures.
     
    A veteran of the U.S. Army having reached the rank of Sergeant, Mr. Brown is a graduate in political science from the University of Maryland.       
  • Mr. Bill Choi

    Bill Choi

    VP, Research & Industry Services
    (202) 238-3413
    Bill Choi is the Vice President of Research & Industry Services for the Equipment Leasing and Finance Association (ELFA), the premier trade association representing 575+ member organizations in the $827 billion equipment finance sector.
     
    Mr. Choi manages research, economic analysis and industry benchmarking metrics. He has been with the association since 2002. He has liaison responsibilities for the ELFA Research and International committees.
     
    Prior to joining ELFA, Mr. Choi served as a product manager in the telecommunications and banking industries. He developed and managed products through their product life cycle from development to maturity. He also worked for the American Institute of Architects (AIA) as the director of marketing, with the task of increasing sales of software, increasing attendance to events and membership, market analysis and marketing publications.
    Mr. Choi holds the Certification Association Executive (CAE) designation from the American Society of Association Executives. He holds a B.S. in Industrial/Organization Psychology and a Masters in Business Administration.
  • Mr. Andy Fishburn

    Andy Fishburn

    VP, Federal Government Relations
    (202) 238-3419
    Andy Fishburn is the Vice President of Federal Government Relations for the Equipment Leasing and Finance Association (ELFA), the premier trade association representing 575+ member organizations in the $827 billion equipment finance sector.
     
    Mr. Fishburn joined ELFA in September 2012. He directs and operates all aspects of the association’s federal relations strategy and the engagement of members in political programs.
     
    Fishburn has focused on legislative, financial and tax policy matters throughout his distinguished career within the Department of Treasury and the U.S. Congress. He served in legislative affairs positions and as senior advisor to four Secretaries of the Treasury, including as a Deputy Assistant Secretary under Secretaries John Snow and Henry Paulson. During 2010 and 2011, he served on the staff of the U.S. Senate Committee on Finance and worked for Sen. Max Baucus (D-Mont.) on tax policies such as bank taxation, tax administration, oversight of the IRS, tax extenders and small business tax issues. Most recently, he was the Director of Legislative and Intergovernmental Affairs at the U.S. Mint, acting as the Bureau’s lead legislative strategist and congressional liaison. He has a B.S. in environmental studies from the University of Michigan and a Master of Public Affairs from Indiana University.
     
  • Mr. Ralph Petta

    Ralph Petta

    Chief Operating Officer
    (202) 238-3430
    Ralph Petta serves as Chief Operating Officer for the Equipment Leasing and Finance Association (ELFA), the premier trade association representing 575+ member organizations in the $827 billion equipment finance sector. As Chief Operating Officer, Mr. Petta is responsible for providing coordination, direction and oversight of ELFA programs and services designed to add value to the association's member organizations.
     
    Mr. Petta, an authority in the business of equipment finance, has been with the association since 1987, serving most recently as interim President. Before that, he was Vice President-Research & Industry Services, managing the ELFA's information, benchmarking, and market research initiatives. Throughout his career at ELFA, Mr. Petta has assumed leadership roles in virtually all functional areas within the organization, including governance, membership marketing, communications, business and professional development, state advocacy, and the association's affiliated Foundation.
     
    He is often quoted in industry trade publications and is a frequent speaker about the role of equipment finance in the U.S. economy and trends and developments in the equipment finance sector.
     
    As liaison to the ELFA's Financial Accounting Committee, he is responsible for managing the association's program to monitor, communicate, and help develop strategy on key accounting and financial reporting issues of concern to ELFA member organizations. In this capacity, Mr. Petta directs the association's current activities related to changes in the lease accounting standard proposed by the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) and Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB).
     
    Mr. Petta is a member of the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE). He completed the ASAE/University of Maryland Executive Development Program and holds a Certificate in Association Management. He also participated in the ASAE Future Leaders Conference.
    Before joining ELFA, Mr. Petta worked for nine years in the office of United States Senator Sam Nunn, serving in a variety of professional capacities. He was Senator Nunn's legislative assistant when he left to join the association. Mr. Petta graduated from Syracuse University earning a B.A. degree in political science.
  • Ms. Lesley Sterling

    Lesley Sterling

    VP, Business & Professional Development
    (202) 238-3435
    Lesley Sterling serves as Vice President-Business and Professional Development for the Equipment Leasing and Finance Association (ELFA), the premier trade association representing 575+ member organizations in the $827 billion equipment finance sector.
     
    Ms. Sterling has been with the association since August 1982. Her primary responsibility is to assess the business and professional development needs of the association's members, and to direct and implement the business and professional development activities for the association. These activities include national conferences, workshops, web seminars and the association's e-learning initiatives. Ms. Sterling has liaison responsibilities with a variety of ELFA standing committees and planning committees.
     
    Prior to joining the ELFA, Ms. Sterling was a training manager with the National Training and Development Service, where she produced one of the first national broadcasts for public officials using satellite communications through a grant from the National Telecommunications and Information Administration. Ms. Sterling is a member of the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE). Ms. Sterling received her undergraduate degree from Boston University in 1971 and her Masters degree in Education from University of Maryland in 1975.   
  • Mr. Paul Stilp

    Paul A. Stilp

    VP, Finance and Administration
    (202) 238-3440
    Paul Stilp serves as Vice President of Finance and Administration for the Equipment Leasing and Finance Association (ELFA), the premier trade association representing 575+ member organizations in the $827 billion equipment finance sector.
     
    Mr. Stilp joined ELFA in 2004. He is responsible for the association's day-to-day operations and finances as well as human resources and facilities management. He is the staff liaison to ELFA's Finance and Audit Committee working with the association's volunteer governance to insure compliance with audit and financial standards. Prior to joining ELFA, Mr. Stilp served as Chief Financial Officer for the National Organization on Disability (NOD) where he guided the charity through the turbulent post-9/11 financial crises many charities faced. Mr. Stilp has also served as Administrative Director and Acting Chief of Staff to two United States Senators and as the CFO of a public relations firm.  
     
    He is a graduate of Miami University and a member of the Society for Human Resource Management, the American Society of Association Executives and the Finance and Administration Roundtable.
  • Mr. William Sutton

    William G. Sutton, CAE

    President & Chief Executive Officer
    (202) 238-3400
    William G. Sutton, CAE, serves as President and CEO of the Equipment Leasing and Finance Association (ELFA), the premier trade association representing more than 580 member organizations in the $827 billion equipment finance sector. Sutton leads the organization in its missions to foster business development, provide industry research and analysis and deliver educational opportunities through conferences, webinars and meetings.  He oversees the advocacy efforts on behalf of the organization and the industry. As President of the Equipment Leasing & Finance Foundation, he coordinates forward-looking research, the primary mission of the Foundation.
     
    A former U.S. Navy Rear Admiral with 30 years’ military service, Sutton previously served as Assistant Secretary of Manufacturing and Services, a unit of the U.S. Department of Commerce’s International Trade Administration. Appointed by President George W. Bush, Sutton was unanimously confirmed by the Senate.
     
    Sutton joined the Commerce Department after serving for five years as president of the Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Institute (ARI), an association that represents manufacturers of more than 90 percent of North American-produced central air conditioning and commercial refrigeration equipment. During his ARI tenure, Sutton served as an officer of the National Association of Manufacturers’ Council of Manufacturing Associations, and he served on the Boards of Directors for the American National Standards Institute, North American Technician Excellence, the Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Technology Institute and the Clifford H. “Ted” Rees Scholarship Foundation.
     
    During his time in the U.S. Navy, Sutton served as Naval Aide to President Ronald Reagan and Director of Programs in the Navy Office of Legislative Affairs, in addition to numerous operational at-sea assignments, including ship, squadron and group commands.
     
    Sutton attained the Certified Association Executive (CAE) credential in 2007 through the American Society of Association Executives.  He is an active member of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s Committee of 100 and serves on the Board of Trustees for the United States Capitol Historical Society.
     
    In 2013, he received the Distinguished Eagle Scout Award from the National Eagle Scout Association and the 10th Annual Financial Services “Good Scout” Award from the National Capital Area Council of the Boy Scouts of America.
     
    Sutton holds an M.S. in Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a B.S. in Naval Engineering from the United States Naval Academy.  
  • Ms. Amy Vogt

    Amy Vogt

    VP, Communications and Marketing
    (202) 238-3438
    Amy Vogt serves as Vice President of Communications and Marketing for the Equipment Leasing and Finance Association (ELFA), the premier trade association representing 575+ member organizations in the $827 billion equipment finance sector.
     
    In this position, Ms. Vogt directs the association's communications, branding and marketing activities. She manages and implements the association's strategic internal communications program, which includes the ELFA's magazine, website, social media initiatives, and daily electronic news feed. She also manages and implements the association's strategic external communications program, which includes media relations and outreach to the industry customer base. In addition, she oversees the ELFA's branding initiatives, developing and disseminating appropriate messaging among members and various external audiences.
     
    Prior to joining the ELFA in July 2010, Ms. Vogt served as director of public and media relations for the American Association of School Administrators, where she created and executed communications, media relations and marketing strategies for school system CEOs. Previously, she served as communications manager for the American Psychological Association's Practice Directorate, where she produced business management resources for mental health practitioners, and as assistant director of communications, publications and technology for the National Association for College Admission Counseling.
     
    Ms. Vogt holds a master's degree in public communication from American University, a bachelor's degree from Smith College, and a publication specialist certificate from the George Washington University School of Professional Development.