People are the key asset to any services company. Our people have the knowledge and insight expected of executives who have successfully worked in multiple capacities at companies ranging from Internet start-ups to Fortune 50.

Neil McLean - Sagacious PartnersNeil McLean, Founder and Managing Partner

Neil believes that a well-run organization can positively impact the lives of everybody in the company, their families and the community they live in. Neil is passionate about helping entrepreneurial leaders grow their businesses while having enough time for their families, vacations and other passions in life.

Neil honed his leadership skills early in life as an Air Force Officer and executive with a Fortune 20 company, but also learned that big organizations weren’t for him. He joined an internet start-up in the late 90’s and earned his MBA in failure before starting his own company in 2001. Neil grew a successful business by helping entrepreneurial and community leaders rapidly grow the economic development engine in South Carolina, twice being named to Columbia’s 50 Most Influential List.  

After reading the book Traction, he implemented EOS in his own business, and realized the power of running a business on a single, simple operating system. Today, as a Certified EOS® Implementer, Neil helps other entrepreneurs to do the same.

As a Vistage Chair, Neil is coach, mentor and facilitator for a Vistage peer advisory board. Vistage is the world’s leading CEO & Business Owner organization, with over 20,000 members.

Neil lives on a pond just outside of Columbia in Blythewood, S.C. with his wife Deb, daughter Veronica and son Thomas.


Meghan HickmanMeghan Hickman, Chief Operating Officer and Partner

Meghan Hickman is a partner and the Chief Operating Officer for Sagacious Partners. With experience leading large nonprofits, industry groups and regional collaborations, Meghan’s expertise is rooted in project management, facilitation, and strategic thinking and planning. After joining the company in 2012, she rose quickly through the company ranks and now oversees the economic development and project management practices at Sagacious Partners.

Prior to joining the SP team, Meghan spent nearly six years working for a United States Senator. During that time she sharpened her skills in fundraising, event management, and served two years as a press secretary on Capitol Hill. Following that, she entered the private sector with Stratacomm, a Fleishman-Hillard Company, and managed full-service, national public relations campaigns for clients ranging from federal government agencies to large coalitions and associations.

Meghan is a magna cum laude graduate of the University of South Carolina Honors College. She also serves on the boards of the Greater Columbia Chamber of Commerce and Girl Scouts of South Carolina – Mountains to Midlands.


Selia Straus - Sagacious PartnersSelia Straus, Chief Client and Administrative Officer

Selia Straus came to Sagacious Partners in 2016 with over 4 years of background working in IT doing account development, recently working at Modis, a technical recruiting firm and prior to that working at Softdocs, a software company specializing in document management solutions for K-12 and higher educational institutions.
Prior to moving to Columbia, she worked for an events-based marketing company that managed a nonprofit educational program with a focus on teaching children entrepreneurial skills/business. She served as Director of the program, called Lemonade Day, and the nonprofit itself. She was also part of the project management team working on a variety of projects, including the opening ceremonies for the Special Olympics, the NCAA Final Four Fan Zone, the San Antonio and Austin Rock and Roll Marathons, as well as the NABE (National Association for Bilingual Education) Conference held in Tampa, Florida. Selia graduated from the University of Colorado with a degree in Psychology.


Katie Fox - Sagacious PartnersKatie Fox, Senior Project Manager

Katie Fox came to Sagacious Partners in 2017 from Harbison Theatre at Midlands Technical College where she served as Executive Director. She has also served as a public school teacher, a theatre professional in Cincinnati, Chicago, and Seattle, and as the Director of Arts Education and Artist Entrepreneurial Development for the S.C. Arts Commission. Fox holds a B.S. in Education from the University of Missouri and an M.A. and M.B.A. from the University of Cincinnati, and serves on the boards of the S.C. Arts Alliance, The Power Company Collective, and Sexual Trauma Services of the Midlands.


Kristin Hamilton - Sagacious PartnersKristin Hamilton, Chief Marketing Officer

Kristin Hamilton joined Sagacious Partners in 2013. She leads the marketing and communications efforts for the company and for several SP clients and initiatives. Kristin graduated from the University of Florida Summa Cum Laude with a B.S. in Advertising and also holds a Master of Advertising degree from UF. Prior to joining Sagacious Partners, Kristin was part of the in-house marketing team at one of the largest commercial real estate firms in South Carolina, NAI Earle Furman, in Greenville. Before NAIEF, Kristin worked in account management at advertising agency Erwin Penland, also in Greenville, where she worked on accounts in the financial, healthcare and real estate industries. Between undergrad and graduate school, Kristin worked at public relations agency Edelman in Chicago. Kristin is a member of the Junior League and is a Life Member of the University of Florida Alumni Association.

Laura Ros - Sagacious PartnersLaura Ros, Project Manager

Prior to joining Sagacious Partners in 2017, Laura Ros worked in the media industry for six years, and enjoyed cultivating relationships and building campaigns for local businesses. She graduated from the University of South Carolina’s School of Journalism and Mass Communication with a B.S. in Advertising and minor in Theatre Arts. She currently serves on the volunteer committee for the Children’s Trust of South Carolina annual gala, and also fosters dogs for local shelters.

Will Schenk - Sagacious PartnersWill Schenk, Project Manager

Will Schenk has been a project manager for Sagacious Partners since 2016 after starting with the company as a fellow. He graduated cum laude from Clemson University in 2015, with B.S. degrees in Economics and in Environmental and Natural Resources. Will brings a strong background in research across a variety of fields, including historical resource economics, voting patterns, efficiency in sports drafts, and aquaponics systems. Always looking for new ideas and partnerships, he’s fascinated by Columbia’s development potential as a top city in the Southeast. Out of the office, Will can be found fishing the Congaree River, exploring Columbia or backpacking anywhere in the Blue Ridge.


Ryan Bermudez - Sagacious PartnersRyan Bermudez, Project Manager

Ryan Bermudez is a 2017 graduate from the University of South Carolina where he received a B.S. in Public Relations and a minor in Business Administration. During his time at USC, Ryan was member of the track and field team as a walk on but would eventually be named a captain his senior year. Ryan would go on to be named a Second Team All-American, SEC All-American, and an Academic All-American along with numerous honor roll awards during his time with USC. Ryan enjoys researching new things and believes that any problem can be solved if we know where to look.