Financial Executive Forum

Financial Executive Forum

This Financial Executive Forum is a peer advisory board for CFOs, VPs of Finance, Financial Directors and others.

Facilitated by a certified Forum Leader, REF is a pioneer offering group experiences uniquely tailored and focused to meet the needs of Financial Executives, helping them be better leaders delivering better results for their organizations.
Our purpose is to accelerate the personal, professional and business evolution of our Financial Executive Members.

We give Financial Executives access to Collective Intelligence in an environment of trust and confidentiality.

We design and assemble peer advisory boards of best-in-class Financial Executives to help them make better decisions and reach their next level.

Financial Executive Forums Led by Financial Experts

REF has formed a strategic alliance with fellow global leader ERA: Expense Reduction Analysts, who has 700 consultants globally and 160 across the USA, which is our initial focus, to expand the accessibility of Financial Executive Forums.


In addition to the peer interaction, I have learned valuable insights and ways to bring value to my organization.

I have been able to work through and brainstorm challenging and complex topics with top-notch executives with a diverse industry background.
Brandon Standford
CFO Eastridge Workforce Solutions
Being an active member in the group has helped reshape my perspective of the CFO role from an analyst focus to an action oriented copilot of the business.

Thanks to the REF Financial Executive Forum, I was early to apply for the ERTC in January of 2021, securing $5.5mm in reduced payroll tax payments while my business rebounded from COVID19 shutdowns.
Frank Jamie
CFO Cartmart
It has been instrumental in the development of several of my C-Suite players and each would agree that REF has helped them grow personally and professionally.

Participation in a regular dialogue with like minded professionals, who are dealing with the very same issues and opportunities can be invaluable, especially in these difficult times.
Brian Rott
CEO Cartmart

REF Financial Insights

Why Financial Executives Must Take a Leading Role in Artificial Intelligence Adoption for their Businesses
7 minutes read

We recently held a webinar titled “Artificial Intelligence for Financial Executives” where you can find a recording and a poll showing very high alignment with the role CFOs/Financial Executives need to play. In his March 2023 GatesNotes post, Bill Gates said, “The development of AI is as fundamental as the creation of the microprocessor, the […]

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Why is REF so committed to Financial Executive Forums and what is the ROI: Return on Investment?
6 minutes read

When I was a CEO, I knew I needed co-pilots around my executive table. Piloting a business in an environment of increasingly fast-paced turbulence, with such high stakes decision making and so many strategy, execution, and leadership challenges, requires Collective Intelligence in the cockpit. I was running high technology aerospace hardware and software companies, serving […]

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CFO as the “Facilitator of Excellence”
5 minutes read

I have to confess, it was only in the latter part of my 25-year “CFO life” (career) I came to this realization. I wasn’t always 100% clear on what I was supposed to focus on in any given situation because there were so many things in need of my attention.  I know a lot of […]

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CFO: CURIOUS Financial Officer
3 minutes read

There is a (relatively) universal view of CFOs and Finance & Accounting folks in general as pure OVERHEAD – part of the necessary costs of running a business.  In my 25 years as a CFO, this was the assumption that others had about my role that I liked the least – BY FAR!  So much […]

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CFO as the Chief FILTERING Officer
3 minutes read

Have you ever seen a swimming pool with no filtering system?  Bet not.  Who would even THINK of leaving out the all-important filtering system in a pool just to save a few bucks?  No one, that’s who! Yet it is more common than not to discover businesses that have invested millions (or tens of millions) […]

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CFO: “Knower of all Answers” or “Asker of Great Questions?”
3 minutes read

The first part of my finance and accounting career was all about being SMART – having the right answers.  Knowing the rules (IRS and GAAP). Like many in technical professions, my sense of self-worth was ANCHORED in knowing the answers and making sure others knew who to come to FOR those answers.  SMARTNESS got me […]

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Robb Lusk
Pittsburgh, CA
REF Forum Leader & ERA Consultant
(412) 600-9691
Robb is a strategic Supply Chain and Finance Professional with more than 25 years of great leadership experience in analysis, business planning and project management.

His career has a strong Finance background with stints in such positions as Controller, CFO and Head of Financial Planning and Analysis in such industries as home-building, manufacturing and consumer packaged goods.

Early in his career, he handled the banking relationship and negotiated bank loans to allow a home-building company to grow from $2M to $10M in 2 years.

Robb has valuable experience in the implementation os new Sales and Operation Planning processes in such measurable as overtime spend and on-time delivery to the customer. Through these Sales and Operation Planning processes, he ushered organizations into impressive ROI metrics. Although Robb considers Finance to be his biggest strength, he is skilled in working with large organizations and getting everyone to align with a specific vision.
"I'm very delighted to be bringing REF's unique value proposition to Pittsburgh and help fellow Finance Executive become better leaders, while delivering better results".