The Founders

Jay Smethurst

Jay Smethurst may be the best listener you will ever meet. He can’t help but hear, process, visualize and share new ideas and information. And he does it at an amazing pace. As a result, he packs a tremendous amount of insight into even the shortest conversation. People are consistently amazed with the way Jay turns a simple 15 minute presentation or conversation into a visual story. They either can’t say enough about it, or they are simply speechless. Either way they take the insights away and keep thinking about them for days and weeks afterward.

Jay has worked with every type and size of organization in every corner of the world. Travel, curiosity, eagerness to experience any and everything, an unending appetite for reading (and cookies) and a brain that is simply wired differently than most make Jay unbelievably clever. Let’s just say that the things that get by him could fit on the head of a pin. You might think that all that good listening and applying brain power would make him introverted. Wrong. He is wickedly funny and has one of those kind, easy going personalities that makes everyone want to have him as a friend.

As the head of business development, when you work with Illumination Galleries, you will certainly be working with Jay. And that is a very good thing. Jay doesn’t settle. He wants to create something spectacular from every opportunity. And so he does. As the owner of three businesses, he keeps one eye on the business case at all times. And the other eye on the cookie platter.

Bryan Coffman

Bryan is never satisfied. If he has done something before, that just provokes him to do it a better way the next time. He loves nothing more than raising the bar. What is so frustrating is that as jaw-dropping as the last solution was, Bryan never fails to do it even better again! And again! It would be difficult to work with such a talented innovator if he wasn't one of the gentlest souls you'll ever meet.

Through his extensive background and experience, he knows more about how to get people to work together productively than anyone on the planet. Period. If you have an impossible problem to be solved, Bryan is who you want in the room. His passion for creation is quietly powerful, and his ability to see the best in everyone around him makes us (and you) strive all the harder to reach the potential he sees.

Heavy, right? Well on top of all that, Bryan's got a silly streak that breaks through the gravitas at just the right moments. We do important work, we take raising the bar very seriously, but Bryan reminds us not to take ourselves too seriously. He ensures that Illumination Galleries facilitate your meeting to achieve extraordinary results while having extraordinary fun.

Chad Hostetler

Chad is an experience guy. Experienced, yes. Degrees, clients, projects – he has been around the block and back. But he has devoted his life to experiences. When you get the pleasure of a Chad experience, he will have worked through every thoughtful detail of what you see, what you hear, even what you smell, which is usually mouth-watering (and often highly caloric). He puts so much thought and effort into every detail of your experience that when you arrive, you’ll have no idea how much planning and effort was involved. It just comes together like magic. The only thing you’ll realize is that you love it. And just when you think he’s thought of everything, he will have planned an extraordinary surprise you’ll swear is just for you.

We have to warn you, be careful what you say around Chad -- he listens. If you casually mention an author who is very meaningful to you, Chad will send you that author's new book. Order a grande, half-caf, soy latte with cinnamon and he will likely bring one for you (exactly like you always order it) to your next meeting. Piping hot. You see Chad listens to learn about what is important to people so that he can seamlessly build those details into the experience. It is his mission in life.

Pair this passion for creating the perfect experience with the knowledge of how people absorb information and explore the environment around them and you are batting a thousand. He settles for nothing less than exceptional. With Chad on the job, we can safely guarantee that your Illumination Gallery experience will be one that you and your attendees will be raving about for days, weeks, months,… years!

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