Board of Regents

Board of Regents

The Loyalty Academy is governed by a Board of Regents whose main function is to monitor the quality and integrity of the educational curriculum developed by the Academy. The Regents sanction all course work and approve all faculty, including guest lecturers. They are responsible for determining course requirements associated with the Certification process. They advise the Academy on course fees, new courses to be developed, participant feedback and all efforts required to maintain the highest possible standards of professional loyalty marketing education. The members of the Board of Regents for the 2021-22 academic year are as follows:

Mike Atkin

Graeme Thomson, Chairman of the Board

Graeme is based in New Zealand and has more than 25 years within the loyalty industry, specializing in program design and incentive marketing, especially within the B2B environment. Having founded and operated Premium Group Marketing as a specialist in both the loyalty and incentive markets, Graeme recently sold his interests after 20 years of operations. He maintains a continued interest in the growth and well-being of the loyalty market in New Zealand and Australasia. Graeme is a principal and Director of the Wise Marketer Group, a CLMP and has served in an advisory capacity since the creation of The Loyalty Academy in 2015. He continues to promote the mission of the Academy throughout Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific region.  

Richard Dutton, Executive Secretary, Board of Regents

Richard Dutton is the Managing Director of ELIAS Partnership, a UK based data and cyber advisory business and serves as the Executive Secretary of the Loyalty Academy. Richard is a CLMP and has over 30 years of senior executive commercial experience and is an acknowledged innovator in the UK charity, loyalty and marketing services sectors. He served as Head of Strategy and Corporate Partnerships at the UK’s leading workplace giving agency, Charities Trust, before co-founding ELIAS Partnership with one of the leading authorities in cyber and data law, Dean Armstrong QC.

Richard is a graduate of Cambridge University in the UK with a Master of Arts in Law. He has worked in the USA, Europe and the Middle East on both the client and agency side and has a particular forte in the applications of digital technology to help communities, charities and loyalty coalitions. He was the principal architect of the loyalty and reward program supporting Liverpool’s year as European Capital of Culture in 2008. Since 2017 ELIAS Partnership has focused on helping charities, corporate entities and loyalty marketing firms address the privacy, data compliance and governance challenges created by the Global Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in the UK, European and US markets.

Richard is a Fellow of the Institute of Data and Marketing and a Member of the Chartered Institute of Fundraising. He has also been a Member of the Customer Strategy Network (CSN) since 2008 and is a contributor to both the Wise Marketer and the Loyalty Academy – where he now serves as Executive Secretary on the Board of Regents and a Guest Lecturer.

Mike Capizzi

Yuping Liu-Thompkins, Member Board of Regents

Yuping Liu-Thompkins is Professor of Marketing and Director of the Loyalty Science Lab in the Strome College of Business at Old Dominion University. She is also a CLMP. Dr. Liu-Thompkins is an expert on building customer loyalty and habit through effective marketing programs. She specializes in turning customer data into useful customer insights and actionable marketing strategies and has worked with national and international companies in travel, retail, financial, and other industries. She has studied extensively the design and effectiveness of loyalty programs as a tool for customer retention, cross-selling, and customer growth while also demonstrating her expertise in digital marketing, especially the use of social media for branding and customer engagement purposes.

Dr. Liu-Thompkins has published her research in the Journal of Marketing, Journal of Interactive Marketing, Journal of Advertising, Journal of Advertising Research and other top academic marketing journals. She serves as an Associate Editor for Journal of Advertising and for Journal of Business Research and sits on the editorial review boards of Journal of Marketing, Journal of Advertising Research, and Journal of Marketing Communications. Dr. Liu-Thompkins has made media appearances in New York Times, Washington Post, NPR’s Marketplace and With Good Reason programs, and various podcasts. She holds both an MBA and Ph.D. in Management from Rutgers University and earned her Bachelor’s degree in Marketing from Renmin University of China.

Phil Rubin

Phil Rubin, Member Board of Regents

A die-hard and life-long New Orleans Saints fan, Phil knows a thing or two about loyalty. Over the course of his over 30-year career, he’s blended experience and innovation to evolve the way businesses identify, retain and expand their best customers. An impeccable leader with passion to spare, Phil founded rDialogue, acquired by Bond in early 2020, after leadership positions at Loyaltyworks and The Lacek Group—a loyalty marketing firm that is now a part of OgilvyOne. Through the years, some of the world’s smartest companies including Adidas, American Express, Delta Air Lines, Citi, Cox Communications, Kimpton Hotels, Mandarin Oriental, Nike, Nordstrom and Williams-Sonoma have sought Phil’s expertise and it’s no surprise why. He’s fiercely loyal to his craft, his clients, and his teams (both Bond & the Saints). Through the years he’s managed to build teams of high-caliber marketers who share his integrity and dedication.

Mr. Rubin has been a proponent of The Loyalty Academy since day one and he serves the Board of Regents as the outside “voice of disruption” (and reason). He is a CLMP and holds an M.B.A. with a concentration in Marketing and Strategy from Tulane University and a B.S. in Finance from L.S.U..

CM Sashi

C.M. Sashi, Member Board of Regents

Dr. Sashi is a retired Professor in Marketing at Florida Atlantic University. He was formerly Chair of the Faculty Assembly and Dean’s Distinguished Service Fellow in the College of Business. He has also served as Chair of the University Computer Governance Committee, Acting Associate Dean of the College of Business, Ph.D. Coordinator and Chair of the Department of Marketing. His Ph.D. research won awards from the Marketing Science Institute and the American Marketing Association. His research has been published in the Journal of Marketing Research, Quarterly Review of Economics and Business, Industrial Marketing Management, Journal of Business Research, Management Decision, International Marketing Review, Journal of Marketing Channels, Journal of Financial Services Marketing and other journals, and he has presented papers at many conferences.

Dr. Sashi has taught at Northwestern, Washington, and Florida Atlantic Universities. He has also taught executive education courses in the US and other countries. He has received several teaching awards including the Stewart Distinguished Professor Award and the TIP Award for Excellence in Teaching twice at Florida Atlantic University. Prior to earning a Ph.D. and pursuing an academic career, Dr. Sashi worked as a Product Executive in industry.

Dr. Sashi is a CLMP and holds a Ph.D. in Marketing from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University, an MBA from the Indian Institute of Management, Calcutta, and a B. Tech. in Mechanical Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur.

Mike Capizzi

Margaret Meraw, Member, Board of Regents

Ms. Meraw serves as the Senior Faculty Leader at the Loyalty Academy where she teaches a variety of courses on loyalty best practices, loyalty technology and program operations. She also co-leads the CLMP Certification workshops held around the world and manages the CLMP ON-DEMAND program. She carries both client side and service provider past experience in the loyalty industry and today operates Effective Execution, an independent consulting practice out of Toronto, Canada which focuses on helping clients realize efficiency, effectiveness and competitive differentiation in their marketing strategies and operations.

Ms. Meraw holds a CLMP, a Masters in Business Administration and Graduate Degree in Management from Athabasca University (CA).

Mike Capizzi

Michael T. Capizzi, Director of Education and Dean of the Loyalty Academy

Mr. Capizzi is a Partner in the Wise Marketer Group and serves as the Dean of the Loyalty Academy. He is the most accomplished educational professional in the loyalty industry – over 1,100 students, in more than 20 countries, in-person and on-line, author, speaker, thought leader plus a member of the adjunct faculty in Marketing at five different US universities. He is an original faculty member of the Oxford University (UK) Loyalty Marketing Workshop for professionals and is an active member in the Customer Strategy Network. He continues to operate a global loyalty marketing consulting practice at Marketing Strategists LLC. He is a Certified Loyalty Marketing Professional (CLMP).

Mr. Capizzi holds a BBA Marketing from the University of Cincinnati and an MA, Media from New York University.