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Venture Capital
** Click Here to Register for our next Early-Stage VC & Angel Investor events:
  • Washington DC VC & Angel Event Jan 16
  • Philly VC & Angel Investor Event Jan 17
  • NYC VC & Angel 2019 Kickoff Event Jan 24

  • Here are the Investor speakers from our Sold-Out Food Investing Conference 2015, sponsored by WeiserMazars, Pura Vida Tequila, McCarter & English, LLP, The Fresh Diet, N6A, Picnic In The Park, Thirstie. This event was in NYC on Thursday, August 20, 2015.

    Photo of Trevor Nelson, Alliance Consumer Growth Trevor Nelson
    Managing Partner
    Alliance Consumer Growth
    Read the full profile for Trevor here!
    Alliance Consumer Growth
    As a co-founder and managing partner of ACG, Trevor enjoys providing a unique level of partnership and capital to entrepreneurs with consumer businesses poised for compelling growth. He has years of experience investing in the consumer industry and executing a variety of financial transactions. Trevor currently serves on the board of Phil's Fresh Foods, maker of EVOL-branded frozen food products.

    Prior to founding ACG, Trevor was a principal with The Lessing Companies, a consumer-focused private equity firm. Earlier in his career, Trevor worked for Texas Pacific Group (TPG Capital), one of the world’s largest private equity firms with over $48 billion of capital under management. As a generalist at TPG, Trevor was involved in transactions in the consumer, industrial and healthcare sectors.

    Before TPG, Trevor spent three years working for the New York-based private equity firm, Harvest Partners where he completed investments in the juvenile products company Evenflo, the natural personal care business Nature's Gate & Nature's Gate Organics, the personal care and beauty business Arbonne International, and the transit bus manufacturer New Flyer Industries.

    Trevor began his career in the Mergers & Acquisitions Group at Lehman Brothers. Trevor holds a B.A. from Northwestern University where he studied political science and was the captain of the men's varsity NCAA soccer team.

    Photo of Shen Tong, Food X Shen Tong
    Founder & Partner
    Food Future
    Read the full profile for Shen here!
    Food Future
    Shen Tong is a serial entrepreneur, angel investor, foodie, social activist, writer/poet, and film buff. One of Newsweeks People of the Year in 1989, Shen Tong was an organizer of the democracy movement in 1989 that occupied Tiananmen Square while he was at Beijing University. After his exile to the US, he finished his undergraduate degree at Brandeis University, and went on to study in PhD programs at Boston University and Harvard University. Mr. Shen became an entrepreneur in the 1990s, founding or co-founding B&B Media and VFinity among other ventures in the past two decades.

    Photo of Alicia Syrett, New York Angels Alicia Syrett
    Founder & CEO
    Pantegrion Capital
    Read the full profile for Alicia here!
    Pantegrion Capital
    Alicia Syrett is the Founder and CEO of Pantegrion Capital, an angel investment vehicle focused on seed and early stage investments. She currently serves on the Board of Directors of New York Angels, as the Chairman of the Board of HeTexted, and is a member of Women Corporate Directors. Her past and present Advisory Board roles include Enerknol, iFunding, Cuipo, The Pitch Deck, Beauty Booked, Cisse Trading Co. and Willa. Sheis a frequent mentor, writer, and speaker in the startup ecosystem and tweets @AliciaSyrett.

    Ms. Syrett is a recurring panelist on CNBCs Power Pitch and has also appeared on CNBCs Cash Crowd, MSNBCs Your Business, and Fox Business Risk & Reward. She was named as one of the 25 Angel Investors in New York You Need to Know by AlleyWatch and as one of Wharton 40 Under 40 young alumni by Wharton Magazine. She has been featured in Inc., The Huffington Post, and USA Today and also served as an Instructor with Steve Blank in his Lean Launchpad course at Columbia Business School. Prior to founding Pantegrion, Ms. Syrett spent over 10 years in the financial industry, which included her entrepreneurial journey as the first employee and CAO of a multi-billion dollar private equity firm. She graduated early from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania with a BS in Economics (magna cum laude) and concentrations in Finance and Accounting. She also possesses two MBA degrees from the London Business School (with distinction) and Columbia Business School where she received Beta Gamma Sigma honors.

    Photo of Jordan Gaspar, AccelFoods Jordan Gaspar
    Managing Partner
    Read the full profile for Jordan here!
    Jordan is a Managing Partner of AccelFoods, where she is a member of the Investment Committee and is responsible for supervising strategy on legal and investor relations for our entrepreneurs. Jordan also oversees the daily operations of AccelFoods. Jordan serves as a Board Member of Whynatte, JJ’s Sweets and Four Sigma Foods.

    Jordan began her career as a corporate attorney spending most of her time at Morrison Cohen LLP. While at Morrison Cohen, Jordan advised venture and private equity firms and their portfolio companies on acquisitions, sales, mergers, financings (seed, bridge and growth capital), fund formation, leveraged buyouts, and ESOP implementation, as well as public securities offerings/compliance and debt financings.

    In addition, Jordan gained significant tactical operational experience successfully founding and running her own small business in the restaurant/hospitality space, and early-stage investment experience serving as a Managing Director of Golden Seeds, a national angel network that invests in women-run companies.

    Jordan holds a B.A. from Columbia College and a J.D. from Fordham Law School.

    Photo of Kevin McGovern, Angel Investor Kevin McGovern
    Angel Investor
    Angel Investor
    Read the full profile for Kevin here!
    Angel Investor
    Kevin M. McGovern is the Chairman and CEO of McGovern Capital,LLC, which provides investments and business strategy to emerging companies, particularly those engaged in consumer technologies and holders of Intellectual Property Rights. He has founded over a dozen companies, seven (7) of which have become world and/or category leaders, including SoBe Beverages, Tristrata (AHA skincare technology), and KX Industries (home-based water purification).

    Photo of Marit Molin, Frontier Equities Venture Capital Marit Molin
    Frontier Equities Venture Capital
    Read the full profile for Marit here!
    Frontier Equities Venture Capital
    Marit Molin is a principal at Frontier Equities VC, where she spends most of her time finding and researching early stage companies. Marit was an investor in glacéau/vitamin water and is currently an investor in Nurture Inc/Happy Baby Foods. Marit is also a contributor at, where she analyzes and writes about emerging market companies and mutual funds. After owning her own fashion business for eight years she started analyzing and buying retail stocks, which awakened her interest in the financial and Venture Capital area. Marit holds a degree from NYU.

    Photo of Kathleen Murray, Executive Forum Angels Kathleen Murray
    Executive Forum Angels
    Read the full profile for Kathleen here!
    Executive Forum Angels
    Kathy Murray is owner of McMorran Strategists, LLC. Earlier, Kathy held C-Suite level positions at publicly-traded firms and partnerships - Aetna, PwC and FARO - in sales, business development and operations. Other affiliations include: Emeriti Board & Immediate Past President of Harvard Business School Women's Association of NY, Trustee on the University of Rochester Board, Board Member at the Daily Gazette (a Schenectady family-owned publishing firm), Advisor to TempBuddy (a Dublin startup software for managing temp employees), Chair of Executive Forum, Founder of Executive Forum Angels and Fellow at the Foreign Policy Association. Kathy is also a frequent speaker/instructor on business development, angel investing, innovation, strategic thinking and building relationships. Kathy received a BA in Math/General Science from the University of Rochester and the Advanced Management Program Degree from Harvard Business School.

    Photo of Sam Rubenstein, Panacea Capital Advisors, Inc. Sam Rubenstein
    Panacea Capital Advisors
    Read the full profile for Sam here!
    Panacea Capital Advisors
    Sam Rubenstein is the President of Panacea Capital Advisors, Inc., a venture capital and strategic advisory firm based in Bethesda, Maryland, that works with a broad range of US middle market companies. In addition to startup and early stage Food Tech, Music Tech and other technology-enabled B2B services with an innovative or disruptive focus, Panacea Capital also invests in and provides strategic advisory services to middle market companies in foodservice, content and information services, outdoor media, distribution and supply chain services, marketing services, financial services, crowd funding services and some consumer retail.

    Sam currently serves as an active director and trusted advisor to (1) a digital outdoor media company, (2) an advertising and sponsorship supported indie music video production and distribution company (, (3) a B2B ecommerce platform that connects foodservice distributors and specialty manufacturers with wholesale food buyers (, (4) an interactive music technology platform focused on the hospitality and retail markets (, (5) a consumer retail business (Party City franchisee), and (6) a quick-service restaurant group (Wendy's franchisee).

    Prior to forming Panacea Capital in 2011, Sam worked as a lawyer in private practice and as a senior executive of a publicly-traded investment company and SBIC for nearly 25 years advising financial services companies, investors and U.S. middle-market businesses with identifying, structuring and/or negotiating in excess of 600 debt and equity financing transactions as well as M&A, joint venture, strategic alliance and other corporate development transactions that involved collectively an aggregate investment amount exceeding $6 billion.

    Photo of Janice Collins, The Refinery Janis Collins
    The Refinery
    Read the full profile for Janis here!
    The Refinery
    Janis, entrepreneur in residence for CTNext, and the Stamford Innovation Center, is a mentor and advisor to early stage ventures. She is also the co-founder of The Refinery, an accelerator that is transforming women led startups in Connecticut into scaleable businesses.

    She started and leads a womens entrepreneur forum, Founders Connect, to help provide women entrepreneurs of Fairfield County more access to capital, networks and knowledge.

    A committed and passionate advisor to startups, she recently created Juice, an event to connect food innovators, mentors and investors. Janis coaches dozens of regional startups, using her proven methodology to help them develop their pitch, refine their business models, and create their go-forward plans.

    She has been helping companies innovate, create and quickly launch new businesses for more than 25 years. First, through her own company, which focused on helping high tech startups and then later advising and funding new financial service companies. Janis has helped found and launch several companies including two non-profit organizations.

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