Staff & Management
Meet the Graston Technique Management Team
Todd R. Lugar, President & CEO
Todd R. Lugar became President & CEO of Graston Technique, LLC in May 2013 and directs the strategic development and overall growth of the company. With particular emphasis on strategic planning, finance, communications, operations and capital planning, he brings to GT a wealth of experience spanning multiple industries.
Prior to assuming the leadership role at GT, Lugar enjoyed a diverse career that included several executive positions with mid-sized manufacturing and distribution companies, including 11 years with Thomas L. Green & Company, his family s 120-year-old manufacturing firm. He also had brief careers in the securities and investment banking fields including stops at Merrill Lynch, Periculum Capital and Somerset CPAs.
Lugar has also spent considerable time as a consultant, specializing in strategic business practices for manufacturers and worked on many local, state and regional economic development initiatives. He has held many leadership positions within business and civic organizations and has served on the boards of several prominent Indiana organizations.
Lugar graduated from Purdue University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Management/Finance.
Jackie Shakar, DPT, MS, OCS, LAT, LMT and GT Clinical Advisor
Jackie Shakar joined Graston Technique, LLC as clinical advisor in June 2011. She has used GT in a clinical setting since 2003 and has been a GT M1 and M2 instructor since late 2004. As clinical advisor, she serves as a liaison with GT's instructors, as well as clinicians in the field. She also guides the development and expansion of our education program.
Shakar has maintained a clinical practice in musculoskeletal physical therapy for more than 30 years, specializing in manual therapy and lower extremity biomechanics, including custom foot orthotics. She is also a full-time professor at Mount Wachusett Community College, where she has taught anatomy, kinesiology, clinical orthopedics and evidence-based practice/clinical research.
Shakar completed a transitional doctoral degree at Massachusetts General Hospital Institute of Health Professions. She became board-certified as a clinical specialist in orthopedic physical therapy by the American Board of Physical Therapy Specialties and earned a master's degree in physical therapy and athletic training. She also is a certified massage therapist.
Mike Ploski, MS, MEd, PT, ATC, OCS and GT Director of Strategic Planning-PT
Mike Ploski joined GT-LLC as Director of Strategic Planning-PT in August 2013. He leads the strategic direction targeting physical therapists, hospitals and rehabilitation company owners as well as works closely with faculty members who teach GT in the curriculum of advanced degree programs for physical therapy and athletic training. He also represents GT at national conferences and exhibits.
Ploski, a board-certified orthopedic clinical specialist and certified golf specialist, also serves as a part-time clinician for Body One Physical Therapy at their North Meridian location, a rehabilitation company with four sites in the greater Indianapolis area. He also is a guest instructor in orthopedic manual therapy at the University of Indianapolis. He was a clinic director in Indianapolis for 12 years for a national rehabilitation company. Prior to that, he was a physical therapist/athletic trainer for the PGA Tour and the CART racing league.
Ploski received a bachelor of arts degree in chemistry from Wabash College and a master of education degree with a major in exercise physiology from Temple University. He also received a master of science degree from the Krannert School of Physical Therapy at the University of Indianapolis.
Dominic Merlina, Director of Sales and Marketing
Dominic Merlina joined Graston Technique, LLC in January 2015 as the Director of Sales and Marketing. Dominic is developing procedures within the Sales, Customer Relations and Marketing departments. He is responsible for Global and Distributor sales of GT trainings, GT products and providing Value Add products to be sold to clinicians, students and relative companies. Dominic s marketing functions include advertising, media, digital and public relations that are in line with company goals, education and meeting client needs.
Dominic brings more than 20 years of sales and marketing experience as an executive/manager to the GT team. He has 25 years of experience in start-up companies, building structure, developing systems and implementing strategies. Dominic s extensive experience is in launching and selling a wide range of specialty products including devices, equipment and systems to various medical professions.
Dominic earned a degree from Butler University in Business Management and in Education.
Karen Cupa, Director of Client Relations
Karen Cupa joined Graston Technique, LLC in December 2007 as a Customer Relations Specialist. She later became the Manager of Client Relations. In May 2013, she was promoted to Director of Client Relations. She handles the oversight of all sales and support of GT trainings and products to GT-trained clinicians, prospective clients and students. She oversees a team of regional specialists who meet the needs of our customers daily, and who facilitate registrations and sales at scheduled and on-site training locations.
Prior to joining GT, Cupa was Manager of Client Relations at a software firm in Carmel, Indiana and was a Customer Service Rep for IBM Global Services. She also was VP of Administration for Summit National Life Insurance Co for more than 20 years.
David Johnson, Director of Accounting
David Johnson joined Graston Technique, LLC as Director of Finance in July 2014. In his role, he leads the General Accounting and Financial Reporting functions and the financial services area including A/R, A/P, Inventory and HR for Graston Technique LLC. He is also responsible for implementing and maintaining a system of internal controls that will ensure that company assets are adequately safeguarded and that all financial reporting is prepared in compliance with all financial policies and US GAAP.
David brings more than 15 years of accounting experience as a manager/controller. He earned a Master of Business Administration degree from Indiana Wesleyan University and a bachelor's degree from Indiana University.
Sales Representatives by Region
Jeff Gorgol, Regional Sales Coordinator - East Coast & Canada East
Pat Guest, Regional Sales Coordinator - South
DeAngelo Pollard, Regional Sales Coordinator - Midwest
Jesse Jack, Regional Sales Coordinator - West Coast & Canada West