Business Matters: Omni Tech International, Ltd. – Midland Daily News

Lee Ann Keller, 56, is the president and chief executive officer of Omni Tech International, Ltd. Keller and her wife, Tamara McGovern, own the business located on Ashman Street, across from Kroger in Midland. Omni Tech provides technical and business consulting services. They focus on three different areas. First, they act as commercialization managers helping clients replace environmentally harmful feed stocks with more environmentally bio-friendly products including soybean oil. Second, Omni Tech provides strategic planning and capacity building for non-profit and for-profit organizations. Third, they provide DEI (diversity, equity, and inclusion) training. Omni Tech has seven employees and eight other people working as contactors in Midland, the U.S., Europe, and China. Keller graduated from Marquette High School and earned a bachelor’s in mechanical engineering at Michigan Tech. She and Tamara have been married for five years. They live in Sanford. Keller has two daughters while McGovern has a son. McGovern is the vice president of finance for Members First Credit Union.

1. How long have you owned your business? I have been a shareholder for over 20 years. Tammy and I bought out the remaining shareholders (except for one percent) over the last couple of years. I’ve been running the company for 20 years.

2. What inspired you to own this business? I always was a little bit of a renegade. Worked for Dow for almost 10 years. Had some little cottage businesses. Then I had the opportunity to go into consulting so I took a leap of faith 25 years ago around when I had my second child. I had created a business and thought the phone would just ring but I learned I had to go out and get involved in the community. Worked for Cornerstone Consulting and then moved on to Omni Tech.

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It’s been a good fit. I’ve always been entrepreneurial even before I knew what one was. The creativity behind it is great. I have technical attributes but I started out majoring in art before I got into engineering.

3. What makes Midland a great place to own a business? The people. A lot of energy and a lot of people who want to do great things. I look at some of the business relationships. There’s a women’s business group. I couldn’t do it without support of people like that. Nice to have someone to call or tell you when you need to grow up (laughs). We have a good accountant and a good lawyer. Without those people, we wouldn’t be as successful. We had to re-strategize from the shareholder model business to a sole proprietorship entity. In Midland, we have a climate of wanting to do better. We want to make the whole region a better place.

4. What are some ways your business is active in the local community? We do a lot of volunteering. Many of our staff are on boards of directors that support organizations in the community. Ann Fillmore has a wealth of experience from working at United Way. Every month, we elect to give back by financially supporting and giving time to a different organization. We comp some of our time so smaller organizations have access to our services.

5. What are some of your interests and hobbies? Right brain-left brain. I have a hidden artist in my soul. I like painting. I have a lot of projects going on at the same time. I love to cook. We’re active outdoors: biking, kayaking. Try to read a good book.

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6. What are some local businesses that you work with that help make your business a success? Jeff Hert with Rehmann Robson, can’t speak highly enough of him. He’s incredible. Helped me reformulate our entire financial plan. We have different banking services. We work a lot with my women in business team made up of CEOs and leaders of other businesses in town.

7. Other thoughts? I am incredibly lucky to have the support of the community, my family, and all of our clients. We’ve all been going through this together (the flood and COVID). We’re healthy, trying to do the best we can. Incredibly thankful for amount of people who pull together when something’s wrong. We saw our neighbors working tirelessly to clean out homes on our street… I think of Sanford Strong, churches, Angela Cole, Dolores Porte, women who amaze me. There are hundreds more like that here. It’s humbling. I’m proud of a community that takes care of their own… I think we’ll make it out of this a stronger community, but not without a little work.



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