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  • Here are the Investor speakers from our Sold-Out Philadelphia Venture Capital Breakfast, sponsored by Wolf Block. This event was in Philadelphia on Wed. May 21, 2003.

    Karen Griffith Gryga, Co-Founder & Principal, Liberty Venture Partners Karen Griffith Gryga, Co-Founder & Principal, Liberty Venture Partners

    At Liberty, Karen specializes in Internet and software investments. She formerly served as Chairman of the Greater Philadelphia Venture Group and sits on the boards of the Ben Franklin Technology Center of Southeastern Pennsylvania’s Innovation Investment Committee, the Bellwether Technology Partnership and the Greater Philadelphia Venture Group. She lectures frequently on investing and entrepreneurialism.

    INVESTMENT PHILOSOPHY: “Effective people are not problem-minded; they are opportunity-minded. They feed opportunities and starve problems.”

    EXPERIENCE: Prior to joining Liberty Venture Partners, Karen served as managing director of Philadelphia Ventures Inc., an early-stage venture capital firm. Karen began her career at TRW Inc., a multi-billion dollar conglomerate, in the Federal Systems Division as a software developer. She exhibited technical abilities as well as management skills and was tapped to lead a software development release.

    EDUCATION: Karen holds an M.B.A. with Distinction in decision analysis and strategic management from the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania and a Master’s in computer science from the Moore School of Engineering at the University of Pennsylvania. She earned her B.S. in computer science (Phi Beta Kappa) from the College of William and Mary in 1987.

    David Noteware, COO, The Science Center David Noteware, COO, The Science Center

    David is the Chief Operating Officer of the Science Center. The Science Center is the nation’s oldest urban technology park with over 2 million square feet of research-focused real estate in three states. The Science Center also operates a full service incubator that assists emerging life sciences and information technologies companies. Since David joined the Science Center in February 2000, the incubator has expanded to three locations and increased in size ten-fold, and the 70+ companies that have entered the Port’s program have grown to an imputed market cap of over $100 million.

    David’s professional career began as an intellectual property attorney at Arnold & Porter in Washington, DC. During the five years he practiced law, he focused on business transactions and joint ventures involving the transfers of intellectual property. David also served for two years as head of Business Development at Cytometrics, a private high tech medical devices company that raised over $30 million during his tenure. More recently, David co-founded PayQuik, a finance technology company focused on serving the needs of ethnic groups in the U.S. and abroad. PayQuik launched its first product, a cross-border money transfer facility, in August 2001. David also founded Noteware Consulting, which assisted Israeli technology start-ups to formulate successful strategies and navigate the fundraising process.

    David was a National Merit Scholar at Duke University, where he earned his BA, in economics, history and political science. He earned his JD at the University of Texas School of Law, where he served as associate editor of the Texas Law Review and received the Dean's Achievement Award for Academic Excellence. He earned his MBA at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania in Entrepreneurial Strategy and Finance and received Directors List honors.

    P. Sherrill Neff, Managing Partner, Quaker BioVentures P. Sherrill Neff, Managing Partner, Quaker BioVentures

    Prior to co-founding Quaker BioVentures, Mr. Sherrill Neff was President, Chief Operating Officer and Director of Neose Technologies, Inc., a publicly traded biotechnology company with dominant proprietary enzyme technology for complex carbohydrates and protein glycosylation. Previously, he was Senior Vice President, Corporate Development, at U.S. Healthcare, a leading health maintenance organization. Sherrill was Managing Director, Investment Banking, at Alex. Brown & Sons, and an attorney with Morgan, Lewis & Bockius. He is on the Boards of Directors of Neose Technologies, Inc., the Pennsylvania Biotechnology Association, the University City Science Center, the Biotechnology Institute, Resource America, Inc., and The Bancorp.com, Inc. Sherrill is a graduate of Wesleyan University and the University of Michigan Law School.

    Brian Murphy, Partner, NewSpring Ventures Brian Murphy, Partner, NewSpring Ventures

    Brian has 20 years of corporate general management and development experience focused primarily in service industries. He founded AMS in 1992, co-founded AMS Capital in 2001 and joined NewSpring as a Partner in August 2002. His experience includes managing companies, developing and executing strategic plans, advising in corporate transactions, investing in growth companies, and negotiating and closing multiple acquisitions in various industries. In addition, he has directly performed or supervised the AMS track record of completing thousands of valuations and negotiated and closed more than 300 transactions. Brian has also been a co-founder of two venture-backed startups, WordWave, a legal court reporting and broadcast captioning leader, and Precyse Solutions, a provider of medical transcription and health information management services. He is a frequent speaker at national forums on healthcare transactions. Prior to forming AMS, Brian spent five years in various corporate executive positions for NovaCare, Inc., a NYSE company, most notably as regional president for the Orthotics and Prosthetics Division. He was also president and chief executive officer for several subsidiaries of Heritage Health Systems, Inc., a privately held managed care company. Before that, he served as director of development for Partners National Health Plans. He holds a bachelor of science degree from the State University of New York, College of Cortland.

    Bruce Luehrs, General Partner, Edison Venture Fund Bruce Luehrs, General Partner, Edison Venture Fund

    Bruce H. Luehrs, General Partner, has been a banker, entrepreneur and venture capitalist for the past 25 years. He has extensive experience with both equity and debt financings. Well known in the Philadelphia area, he leads Edison’s activities in Pennsylvania from its Bala Cynwyd office. At Edison, Bruce is a director of Fiberlink, Gain Capital, Incurrent Solutions, InnaPhase, FastNet, Correctnet, Derivatives Portfolio Management, Octagon Solutions and Cadient, and is an Observer of V-Span.

    Since joining Edison, Bruce has concentrated his investment activities on financial services information technology (IT), pharmaceutical IT and communications services companies. Previously, Bruce was Vice President of Columbia Capital, an investment merchant bank in Alexandria, Virginia specializing in telecommunications and a principal at PNC Equity Management and Fidelcor Capital. While at PNC Equity Management, he directed their specialization on wireless telephone service investments.

    Earlier in his career, Bruce was a commercial lender with Continental Illinois National Bank (Chicago) and Fidelity Bank (Philadelphia). While at Fidelity, he developed a lending and investment practice for Fidelity Bank to serve emerging growth companies in the Delaware Valley. In 1998, he secured a SBIC license for Fidelity Bank and served as the first President of the SBIC unit and Fidelcor Capital. Bruce is past Chairman of the Greater Philadelphia Venture Group and is an active member of the Mid Atlantic Venture Conference Steering Committee and Association for Corporate Growth. Bruce was commissioned as an officer in the United States Air Force in 1975. He received an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University following graduation from Duke University with a BA in Economics.

    Moderator: David Gitlin, Chair Corporate/Securities, Wolf Block

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