Mr. Gries is Chairman of Crius Energy Trust, one of America’s largest independent energy retailers in the Unites States with approximately 515,000 electricity and natural gas customers. Mr. Gries was Chief Executive Officer of Public Power from September 2009 until its merger to form Crius Energy. Mr. Gries is the Founding Member and current Managing Director of the Gries Investment Funds. The funds are active in providing financing for both corporate and real estate purposes as well as being an active investor in distressed investment opportunities. Prior to the inception of the fund in 2005, Mr. Gries was a private mezzanine lender and financed a variety of loans for public and private companies, real estate projects and several professional franchises. Mr. Gries is currently the largest shareholder of the Orlando Predators Arena football franchise and sits on various corporate boards, including the University of Tampa.
Mr. Gries, formerly a director of the Cleveland Browns, assisted in negotiating the sale of his family’s 43% stake in the franchise in 1996. The Gries family ownership spanned 60 years, dating back to 1936. He is the former majority owner, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Tampa Bay Storm, and Arena Football franchise that he owned from 1991-1994, and was elected League Executive of the Year in 1993. In 1999, Mr. Gries was the managing member of the entity which developed the $25 million, 43,000 square foot WWE-New York entertainment facility in Times Square. Mr. Gries oversaw the construction of the facility and negotiated the sale to the WWE in 2000.
Mr. Gries is a graduate of the University of Michigan and has a fourteen year old daughter, Zoe, who was adopted from Wuhau, China. Mr. Gries is also an active runner and maintains an extensive Olympic collection.
Mr. Martin is a Principal at Gries Investment Funds. His roles include risk management, operational management, and evaluation of various types of investment opportunities. Prior to joining Gries Investment Funds, Mr. Martin was a Senior Vice President at First Union/Wachovia Bank (now Wells Fargo) and held multiple leadership positions over his 17-year career. While at the bank Mr. Martin’s responsibilities included strategic planning, credit management, sales management, and human resource leadership.
Originally from New Zealand, Mr. Martin now resides in St. Petersburg, Florida with his wife Jill. He is a graduate of the University of Georgia and is an active boater and golfer.