About the Founders

Hi there!

Derek Coburn here. We wanted to give you a quick overview as to how CADRE came to be, and who it is for.

About Derek

I began my career as a financial advisor in 1998 and built a successful wealth management practice – which I still run today – mainly through cold-calling in the early years, and then networking.

I was constantly looking to grow and improve – mainly by increasing the quality of my connections and the content I consumed.

When the economy took a turn for the worse in 2008, I had to devote even more time to my existing clients. This left less time for networking and learning (books, CDs, etc.)

I joined high-level networking groups and professional organizations, where I met some great people. Unfortunately, I also met a lot of professionals who were only interested in themselves.

These groups also brought in some good speakers, and some that weren’t so good.

Did I really have to be exposed to mediocre people and boring speakers as often as I was exposed to quality ones? Traditional networking isn’t working for folks like us who have little time to spare. (This is why I wrote the #1 Amazon Bestseller, Networking Is Not Working.)

I co-founded CADRE, along with my wife Melanie, in 2011 as a way for elite professionals to learn from the top experts in the world, while connecting and developing meaningful relationships with like-minded peers.

About Melanie

After 14 years at the Washington Football team, I grew a very diverse network of clients, partners and friends, and focused on building these relationships over time. I firmly believe that by deepening your existing relationships, you ultimately expand your network by cultivating word-of-mouth marketers among these connections.

I built the business side of the (formerly known as the Redskins) Cheerleaders from the ground up, as the first person in the NFL to hold this position. After a few years, I found that my job became easier and easier because of the people I partnered and worked with. These famous First Ladies made memories for people in the DC Metro area and beyond. However, there were quite a few remarkable people behind the scenes, every one of whom was essential to making it all happen. With the Cheerleaders, I used to say I was in the business of smiles. Now, through CADRE, I hope to become a cheerleader for world-class professionals and bring smiles to your faces each time I create an opportunity for you!