Preferral's leadership team has deep roots in building and scaling healthcare technologies.

Leadership Team

Jim Aylward - President, CEO and Board Chairman

Jim Aylward


Mr. Aylward is the President of Preferral and has 25+ years of experience in healthcare. Prior to joining Preferral, he was President & CEO of MedCenterDisplay, LLC and successfully sold the company to PatientPoint.

Prior to joining MedCenterDisplay, he was the CEO of Sy.Med Development, Inc. a HealthStream, Inc. (NASDAQ: HSTM) company. He joined Sy.Med in February 1997 as VP, Sales & Marketing and was named Chairman of the Board, President, and CEO in May 1997. Aylward remained in that position until the sale of Sy.Med to HealthStream in October 2012. Under his leadership, Sy.Med won numerous business awards, including the Inc. 5000 Fastest Growing Private Companies in America three years in a row. Additionally, Sy.Med became an MGMA AdminiServe® Partner and a Microsoft® Gold Certified Partner.

Mr. Aylward has received numerous personal awards including the 2012 Health Care Hero Award and the 2012 Business Leader Top 50 Entrepreneurs.

Jon Gautsch - Founder, CTO and Board Member

Jon Gautsch


Mr. Gautsch is the Founder and Chief Technology Officer of Preferral. He studied Computer Science at the University of Notre Dame, and while there, was a winner of the GE & Oschner Health Hospital Quest competition.

Mr. Gautsch has broad experience developing software solutions in healthcare and has developed applications used widely in healthcare settings such as hospitals, clinics, and SNF's across the country including population health platforms used in academic research, clinical workflow and analytics tools, and telemedicine platforms. Additionally, he has developed and licensed proprietary technology to some of the largest healthcare informatics companies.

Cory Wilson - Business Development Manager

Cory Wilson


Mr. Wilson joined Preferral as a Business Development Representative in October 2018 to drive sales and customer adoption. Wilson was promoted to Business Development Manager in December 2019. Before joining Preferral, he spent 2 years in the technology start-up world, honing his sales and customer relations skills at Houzz. Mr. Wilson attended Seton Hall University on a 4-year Division I golf scholarship. His hard work on and off the course earned him a degree in Business Administration and Freshman Male Athlete of The Year award.

Tammie Potts - Vice President Sales & Marketing

Tammie Potts


Ms. Potts joined Preferral in March 2020 as Director of Strategic Accounts and has 25 + years in healthcare. Prior to Preferral she was contracted with Sales Focus Inc. to drive sales on various contracts. Ms. Potts has broad knowledge of healthcare and has traveled extensively across the U.S working with large hospitals, healthcare systems and IDNs. She has a successful track record working in corporate and start-up environments within the healthcare industry. She has worked in various roles with companies such as MDsave, Johnson & Johnson, Eli Lilly, Cardinal Health, and American Medical Response.

Ms. Potts enjoys being involved in the Nashville community and has been involved as President of Board of Directors - Middle Tennessee JDRF, Chair of the Opening Ceremonies Spring Games Special Olympics Tennessee, Preston Taylor Ministries - Mentor Lunch Buddy, and Revenue Leader March of Dimes. Ms. Potts is a graduate of Murray State University.

Christopher Rand, CFA - Board Member

Christopher Rand, CFA


Mr. Rand is the Co-founder and Managing Director of TriStar Technology Ventures in 2009. Through his role at TriStar, he serves on the Board of Directors for Angel Eye, Carrot Medical, Cobra Introducer, Evermind, InvisionHeart, MedCenterDisplay, Octovis, Preferral and Nashville Capital Network. Prior to co-founding TriStar, Mr. Rand was the Manager of New Venture Development in Vanderbilt’s Office of Technology Transfer and Enterprise Development. That responsibility included licensing Vanderbilt intellectual property, assisting in the formation of new start-up companies and working with existing start-ups. Since beginning as the Chancellor’s Fund in 2000, Vanderbilt has invested a significant amount of capital into 30 different Vanderbilt-related companies. Mr. Rand was responsible for managing this portfolio and represented Vanderbilt on the boards of five of these companies.

Prior to joining Vanderbilt, Mr. Rand worked in PricewaterhouseCoopers’ valuation group, providing consulting and transaction support services. He received his undergraduate degree from the University of Notre Dame and his MBA from Vanderbilt.

Byron Smith, MBA - Board Member

Byron Smith, MBA


Mr. Smith is a Principal at Mountain Group Capital and currently serves on or has visitation rights to the board of directors of the following companies: NuSirt Biopharma, Silicon Ranch, AgTech Accelerator, Preferral, and splitsecnd. Mr. Smith previously served on the board of directors of Aspire Health, MedCenterDisplay, and Myomo (NYSE:MYO).

Prior to his involvement with MGP, Mr. Smith held a long and distinguished career in the wireless and tech spaces. After receiving an MBA from the University of Chicago, Mr. Smith began his career at Procter & Gamble and PepsiCo in brand management and advertising. After eight years in packaged goods marketing, Mr. Smith transitioned into tech. First, in the early days of wireless, Mr. Smith served at Verizon (formally GTE); prior to the merger creating Verizon, all U.S. operating areas reported to him. In early 2000, Mr. Smith moved to Silicon Valley, where he was the EVP/GM and Chief Marketing Officer with Excite@Home. In Silicon Valley, Mr. Smith gained experience in media/content and internet technology/infrastructure. Mr. Smith moved home to Tennessee in 2002 with Asurion as EVP/CMO. He led the relocation of Asurion’s headquarters from Silicon Valley to Nashville.

Mr. Smith was also a founding board member at The Nashville Entrepreneur Center and sits on the boards of The Trinity Forum in Washington D.C. and Lost Valley Ranch in Colorado. Recently, Mr. Smith taught entrepreneurship as an adjunct professor at Vanderbilt University’s Owen Graduate School of Management.

Frank E. Gordon - Board Member

Frank E. Gordon


Mr. Frank E. Gordon serves as the Managing Partner at Crofton Capital, L.P. in Nashville, Tennessee. Mr. Gordon served as Vice President of Development and Managed Care of MediSphere Health Partners. Mr. Gordon has been a Director at Sy.Med Development, Inc. He served as Director of Provider Relations at HealthWise of America from 1993 to 1996 and served in this capacity through the acquisition of HealthWise by United HealthCare. He has also held various marketing and development positions with Hospital Corporation of America, Surgical Care Affiliates and Geriatric Medical Care. Mr. Gordon serves as a Director of Nashville Capital Network. He has been a Director of HealthStream, Inc. since 2002. He serves as a Member of the Investment Committee of NCN Angel Fund I, NCN Angel Fund II, Tennessee Angel Fund and NCN Partners Fund. He earned a Bachelor of Science from the University of Texas in Austin and a Masters in Business Administration from Georgia State University.

Tom Stearns - Advisor

Thomas H. Stearns, FACMPE


Thomas H. Stearns, FACMPE retired as VP-Medical Practice Services for State Volunteer Mutual Insurance Company in Brentwood, Tennessee in the Summer of 2018.

After serving as a Medical Service Corps Officer in the US Army he entered Clinic Management in 1976. Over the next 20 years he managed two orthopaedic practices in Middle Tennessee. In 1996 he started the Medical Practice Services Department at SVMIC.

Tom has served as Chair of the American College of Medical Practice Executives, President of Tennessee MGMA, President of Southern Section MGMA, MGMA Board of Directors, Finance/Audit Chair of MGMA, and Chair BONES (American Academy of Orthopaedic Executives).

He is active in community affairs and currently serves on the Board and Executive Committee of Dismas House; the Board of Waves, Inc.; and is an Emeritus Board Member of United Way of Williamson County. He is Past Senior Warden of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church and has served two terms on the Vestry.

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