Vice President, Software Engineering
Mark Ballstaedt brings more than 20 years of software and technology experience to his role of Vice President of Software Development at Young Living. His experience has included providing digital technology support and software development for retail and direct sales companies in a range of industries, including JetBlue Airways, 1-800 CONTACTS, and Glasses.com. Most recently, Mark served as Vice President of Technology at Vivint Smart Home.
Mark’s love for technology began when he started working on computers and developing software at the age of 12. During his career, Mark has helped develop and implement software and technology for companies looking to build digital brands, grow sales, and improve the experience of customers and employees.
Mark is passionate about technology, and he knows the importance of supporting the innovators who create it. That’s why Mark believes in developing the strengths of individuals as well as creating high-performing software development teams and systems. To Mark, the strength of a team will always be more powerful than the strength of a single individual, which is why he also believes in building successful cross-departmental relationships.
In addition to his love of computers and software, Mark enjoys running, reading, boating, and spending time with his family. He lives in Midvale, Utah, with his wife, Emily, and their seven children—three of whom joined the family through adoption.
Mark is excited to work for Young Living, where he can make a difference in people’s lives. He loves the wellness support of NingXia Red and the calming and strengthening aroma of Valor blend.
General Manager, North America
From scraping her knees working on a family tree farm to working her way up the ranks of the direct sales world, Sarah Bjorgaard’s entire working life has led her here: to the exciting role of general manager of North America!
Sarah was raised working on a tree farm, earning her allowance by caring for plants and animals. Young Living’s mission echoes the devotion she developed as a child to harnessing wellness from the earth.
She is a graduate of Ridgewater College in Minnesota, with a degree in cosmetology and a focus in business operations. Her background in and passion for cosmetology made her the perfect fit for her role at Mary Kay Cosmetics, where she spent more than 14 years as a top independent executive teaching skin care and colour. She also taught Independent Beauty Consultant business growth strategies in the United States, Canada, the UK and Australia.
Sarah joined Young Living with a full toolkit gained from 25 years of experience in the direct sales industry. She spent years leading dynamic, high-performance teams with companies such as Tastefully Simple, Melaleuca and Plexus Worldwide.
Sarah was originally hired at Young Living as the VP of Beauty Essentials, then moved up the ladder to the position of general manager of the U.S. market. Her quick rise through the ranks is hardly surprising, considering her education, work experience and background.
In her most recent role before joining Young Living, Sarah was VP of global sales, where she led all aspects of global field communications and social media, created and executed field incentives, developed sales tools and trained on their effective use, coached and set goals with field leaders and developed new business.
Beyond her love of nature, Sarah loves helping people develop their leadership skills and coaching them in building their businesses. She loves landscaping, decorating and spending time with her family.
Some of Sarah’s favorite Young Living products include Stress Away™ Roll-On and Savvy Minerals® Lip Gloss. She’s looking forward to harnessing her extensive experience, rolling up her sleeves and adding her expertise to North America.
General Manager, Mexico
Manuel Ramirez’s journey with Young Living has been a unique one. He was first introduced to Young Living in 1997 when meeting Young Living’s late founder D. Gary Young to explore a business partnership. While that partnership did not come to fruition, Manuel is excited to now be a contributing member of the Young Living team.
With more than 24 years of experience, Manuel is no stranger to the direct sales industry. After receiving degrees in both chemistry and pharmacology, his career path led him to sales and marketing. He worked for numerous companies, including Morinda Inc., 4Life Research, Market America, and Jeunesse Global, holding positions that allowed him to manage sales and marketing teams and to serve as a general manager.
Manuel loves working for Young Living because he gets to pursue his passion while spending time with his family. He’s been happily married for 23 years and has two beautiful daughters. When he’s not working hard creating strategies for the market in Mexico, he likes to row, attend the theater, and surround himself with friends and family.
His favorite Young Living products include mint and citrus oils. He also likes Deep Relief, Breathe Again and Lavender Mint Daily Shampoo.