Meet the Judges! These are the VCs and Angel Investors who will be reading and evaluating the company profiles.
*Click on the Logos Below for Fund Descripitons
Greg Dracon, Principal, .406 Ventures
Greg Dracon joined .406 in 2007 and is involved in all aspects of the investing and portfolio management process. He brings 18 years of venture investing and technology operating and management experience.
Prior to joining .406, Greg was a Vice President of Core Capital Partners, a venture capital firm focused on early-stage venture and small to mid-sized growth technology companies. At Core, Greg focused on software, digital media, technology-enabled services and wireless applications.
From 1995 to 2005, Greg held various operating and management roles at Texas Instruments, including positions in worldwide sales, business development, product distribution and digital signal processing applications.
Greg received his MBA, with majors in Entrepreneurial Management and Finance, from The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and his BS in Electrical Engineering from The Pennsylvania State University.
Andy Whitman, Managing Partner, 2x Consumer Products Growth Partners
Andy Whitman is a successful consumer products executive and investor who melds the experience of a Fortune 100 leader with the passion and resourcefulness of an entrepreneur. After a successful career with General Foods and Kraft Foods and recognizing that nurturing smaller businesses to achieve rapid growth was his passion, he focused on investing in and helping to operate small consumer products companies. For example, he successfully partnered with management and co- investor Catterton Partners to assist Wellness pet food and Old Mother Hubbard pet treats to be one of the largest CPG exits in the last decade.
Andy began his career managing icons like Kool-Aid and Tang. After years of delivering results on big brands, he jumped at the opportunity to run small, autonomous businesses within Kraft in a shirtsleeves environment. Taking charge of brands as small as $10 million that Kraft had been unable to grow or run profitably, Andy's entrepreneurial leadership produced outstanding results. His ability to grow businesses comes from his proven general management experience built upon a diverse breadth of prior functional assignments, including marketing, sales, operations planning and corporate development.
He currently or previously assisted pro bono by serving as a board member for the Jewish United Federation Foods & Hospitality Trade Sector, Marketing Executives Network Group (MENG), Venture Board of the Women's Self-Employment Project and White Plains Child Day Care Association, a Head Start agency.
Andy received a B.B.A. from the University of Wisconsin and an M.B.A. from Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management. He is an outdoor adventure traveler, an active skier, an avid college basketball fan, a Culinary Institute of America-trained cooking enthusiast and a devoted Parrothead – as a result of traveling early in his career with singer Jimmy Buffett.
Annette Finsterbusch, Director, Applied Ventures, LLC
Annette Finsterbusch is a director for Applied Ventures in the Corporate Business Development group of Applied Materials since 2004, responsible for identifying, recommending and managing venture capital investments. She is also a Kauffman Fellow.
Prior to joining Applied Materials, Ms. Finsterbusch was the CEO at MindShadow.com, a technology spin-out of DaimlerChrysler's Research and Technology Center. Prior to that position, Ms. Finsterbusch was an investment manager for DaimlerChrysler Venture Capital since 2001, responsible for enterprise software investments. Ms. Finsterbusch also had previously worked for Applied Materials, leading its business development efforts in Russia, Belarus and Armenia from 1996 through 2000, chartering the company's first office in Moscow.
Ms. Finsterbusch's philanthropic directorships include seats on both the Board of Directors for the Junior League of San Jose and the Exception Women Executives of San Jose State University.
Ms. Finsterbusch received a Bachelor of Science in economics and geology from the University of Houston and a Master's in Business Administration in Strategy and Finance from San Jose State University, where she was honored with the Graduate of the Last Decade (GOLD) Award in 2004.
Michael Kelley, Founding Member, ARC Angel Fund
For more than 13 years, Michael Kelley has been executing and managing principal investments in venture capital and real estate. He is the founder and principal of Formation Capital, Inc. (“Formation”), which currently manages in excess of $50 million in equity invested in 30 investments. Formation’s venture portfolio includes Foxfire Printing and Packaging, iProcess Online and Performance Systems Development. Formation also manages investments in multi-family developments utilizing the Low-income Housing Tax Credit. At Formation he personally developed an online fund management system that allows all stakeholders to collaborate, upload or access information based on permissions. Prior to Formation, Mr. Kelley was a principal with HK Special Situations Group, where he provided advisory services to the US Small Business Administration regarding a troubled Small Business Investment Company. He was also a principal with GSA Management and with Intrust USA. At Intrust he was responsible for raising and investing 4 real estate tax credit funds and one venture capital fund. In addition to serving as the Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Delaware Innovation Fund, Mr. Kelley sits on the boards of Foxfire Printing, Early Stage East, and the Metropolitan Wilmington Urban League. Mr. Kelley received his BA degree in History magna cum laude from the University of Delaware.
Sebby Kannukkaden, Associate, Arcapita Ventures
Sebby joined Arcapita Ventures in 2008 with over four years of experience in management consulting and equity sales and trading. Prior to joining Arcapita, Sebby was an Associate with A.T. Kearney where he advised clients on strategic and operational issues across various industries including consumer products, defense, financial, automotive, and pharmaceutical. His functional experience includes acquisition due diligence, product launch and profitability analysis, organizational redesign, supply chain implementation, and BPO strategy. Prior to A.T. Kearney, Sebby was with UBS Investment Bank in the Sales and Trading program where he spent time on derivatives, proprietary, and international trading desks. Sebby holds a Bachelor of Business Administration with Distinction from the Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan, and is a scholar and graduate of the Tauber Institute for Global Operations.
Chris Leong, Principal, Argentum Private Equity Capital
Chris Leong rejoined The Argentum Group as a Principal after completing several years of management roles at growth stage ventures. Chris has over 11 years of operational (business development, sales, marketing) and venture capital / private equity experience. His areas of expertise include new deal origination, new investments, and corporate development (mergers & acquisitions) / business development / marketing for Argentum’s portfolio companies.
Prior to returning to Argentum in 2008, Chris spent over 5 years with Sirit Inc., a leading developer and supplier of Near Field Communications (NFC) and Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology. At Sirit, Chris was a key member of the executive team, where he held several senior management positions including VP NFC and Contactless, VP Corporate and Business Development, and VP Sales RF Solutions, and successfully grew revenues for numerous Sirit business divisions. In addition, Chris established Sirit’s Near Field Communications (NFC) division and was responsible for sourcing and securing several significant customers and partnerships across North America, Asia, and Europe, including NXP, Microsoft, BenQ / Qisda, Kyocera, and Intel.
Chris has also held corporate strategy and marketing positions at HorizonLive (now Wimba), a leading supplier of collaborative learning software applications and services to the education industry.
Previously, Chris was a Senior Associate with The Argentum Group and an analyst with the Lehman Brothers Merchant Banking Partners private equity fund. Chris is a graduate of The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.
Mike Stowell, Partner, Arris Ventures
Mr. Stowell brings 14 years of consulting, entrepreneurial, and technology experience to Arris Ventures. As a senior manager with Accenture, he assisted clients in a variety of areas including business process design and business strategies for marketing, eCommerce, and the launching of new businesses. As program manager of Accenture's eProcess initiative, Mr. Stowell developed and globally deployed eCommerce knowledge capital to over 30,000 of Accenture's professionals, as well as its clients. Prior to his work at Accenture, he served as a regional sales manager and technical consultant for Arizona-based, start-up software company, Sequentia. Mr. Stowell's early career included several engineering positions with Honeywell. He holds an MBA from Arizona State University and a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University.
George Petracek, Partner, Atrium Capital
George joined Atrium in 2000. Previously, he was a Corporate Business Development Manager at Hewlett-Packard, where he focused on M&A and venture investments across various HP businesses. Prior to joining HP, George was a Vice President of Corporate Finance at Union Bank of Switzerland, working with telecommunications, industrial, utilities and financial institutions clients. Prior to that, George was an Associate with Morgan Stanley in its M&A execution group. He began his professional career as a computer programmer for 3M. George received his MBA from Stanford University and his MS degree in Cybernetics from CVUT Institute of Technology.
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Dr. Harry Ross, , Aweida Venture Partners
Dr. Ross received his medical degree from Oregon Health Sciences University. He went on to receive post graduate training in Surgery and Emergency Medicine at Hennepin County Medical Center, with National Board Certification in Emergency Medicine. He joined Aweida Venture Partners in 2000, where he specializes in Health Sciences. Dr. Ross has held both operational and directorial roles in portfolio companies as well as advisory roles in academic institutions.
Dan Aweida, , Aweida Ventures
Dan joined the firm in 1991 to work closely with the portfolio investment companies in the telecom, data storage, and IT industries while also managing the stock portfolio of AVP. Today, his primary focus is in data storage, clean technologies, and ecommerce related businesses. He works with portfolio companies and assists them with strategic guidance, financial analysis and helps them to avoid navigational potholes without micromanaging their efforts. He serves on the board of Channel Intelligence, Privacy Networks, eStarcom, TerraXML, Atrato, and Storage Genetics.
Dan is also the President of Aweida Properties, Inc., which develops commercial land and operates multple commercial buildings which house approximately 130,000 sq.ft. in Boulder County.
Dan earned a B.S. in Business from the University of Northern Colorado and has an M.B.A. in Finance from Regis University. He was a founding member of the Regis Forum Technology Task Force, a group created to guide the technology curriculum at Regis. He also serves on the board of the Boulder Valley YMCA.
Murat Bicer, Senior Associate , Battery Ventures
Murat joined Battery in 2007 as a Senior Associate focusing on investments in communications infrastructure and enabling technologies. Prior to joining Battery, Murat worked at Mercury Computer Systems where he was responsible for growing Mercury's share in the communications market by managing the development of innovative communications systems and infrastructure solutions. Murat also worked in the financial services group, where he helped investment banks improve the performance of program trading and derivatives pricing applications. Previously, he worked as a software engineer at Intra Information Technologies, a startup company that developed GSM-based mobile transaction devices for financial institutions.
Murat currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Software Defined Radio Forum, an international telecom trade association. He holds an M.B.A, summa cum laude, from the Olin Graduate School of Business at Babson College and an M.S.E.E from Northeastern University.
Norman Meisner, Angel Investor, Beta Fund
Mr. Meinser has worked for nine startups as VP of sales or VP of business development yielding five acquisitions and one IPO. His expertise is in the areas of enterprise software, security and data communications. Most recently, he served as the VP of business development at Authentica, acquired by EMC in early 2006. He has been a private angel investor since 1998 and he led the angel round at Lumigent Technologies, where he served on the Board for 5 years. He works with his investments to help develop sales and partnering strategies.
Terrence Hicks, Vice President, Investment Group, Ben Franklin Technology Partners
Terrence H. Hicks is Vice-President, Investment Group at the Ben Franklin Technology PArtners of Southeastern Pennsylvania (BFTP/SEP). The Ben Franklin Technology PArtners is a State of Pennsylvania supported economic development corporation that supports the development of technology-based enterprises through a variety of investment programs and technology services. Mr. Hicks is responsible for all of the organization’s investment activities. BFTP/SEP has a portfolio of over 130 early and emerging stage technology companies; one of the largest such portfolios in the country. Mr. Hicks came to the Ben Franklin Technology PArtners in November, 1993 after twenty years of experience in small business lending and corporate treasury activities with Fidelity Bank (currently Wachovia) and Sun Company respectively. Mr. Hicks previously served as Vice President of Sun Company's Specialized Small Business Investment Company, Alliance Enterprise Corporation. He also served in numerous financial management positions at Sun, including manager of internal treasury operations and manager of special projects.
James Marra, Principal, Dir. Bus. Development, Blue Point Capital Partners
Jim joined the group in 1991. Before joining the group, Jim held various positions with Citicorp in the Leveraged Capital, Investment Banking and Venture Capital Groups. Jim earned a B.S. in psychology from Pennsylvania State University and an MBA from the University of Pittsburgh.
Michael Wu, Principal, Chart Venture Partners
Michael joined CVP as Principal in 2006 and has more than 14 years of experience from engineering and product management to venture advisory, angel investing and venture capital. In 2002, he founded Blue Angel Ventures, a Research Triangle Park, NC-based seed funding and venture advisory firm focusing on wireless IT, advanced materials, nanotechnology, and medical devices. He has served in interim management and board positions of several technology start-ups and is also a founding board member of Long Island Angel Network. From 1994 to 2002, Michael held engineering, technical sales, and product management roles in fiber optics, smartphones, public safety and next-generation technologies at Nortel Networks, Ericsson, Siemens, and Nextel Communications. He also worked as an avionics software developer at Messerschmitt-Boelkow-Blohm / DASA, an aerospace defense contractor in Munich, Germany.
At CVP, Michael focuses on investments in MEMS and Nanotechnology as they apply to communications, sensors, and power & energy, and actively supports CVP's portfolio companies. He has led investments and represented investors on the Board of Blue Angel Ventures' portfolio companies.
Michael earned an MBA from the Fuqua School of Business at Duke University, MS in Electrical Engineering and Management of Technology from Georgia Institute of Technology, and BSEE (magna cum laude and Eta Kappa Nu graduate) from Worcester Polytechnic Institute. He is also fluent in Mandarin, Taiwanese, and German.
David Arscott, Managing Director, Compass Technology Partners
David has spent his entire professional career investing in private and public technology companies. In 1968, he joined the group which became Citicorp Venture Capital Limited (“CVC”) in New York. He established CVC's West Coast Office in 1973 which served as the focus of CVC's investing activities in the western United States for over 15 years. In 1978, he left to co-found Arscott, Norton & Associates (“ANA”), which formed three venture capital funds whose $75 million in capital funded 36 high-technology companies, including Iomega, Lam Research and Dallas Semiconductor. In 1988, David formed Compass Management Partners (“CMP”), which in turn organized Compass Technology Partners and Compass Technology Group. David’s formative premise for Compass is that information garnered in the venture capital investment process has direct applicability in the selection of high-potential publicly-traded investments.
Ronald Thompson, Founder & Investor, Corporate Angels
Ron Thompson is a founder of CAIL.
Having started in the technical side of the industry, moving to product management and then to profit / loss responsibility, Ron has accumulated considerable business experience with an ability to successfully generate bottom line results.
With this background and having made many investments over the years, venture Founders benefit with Ron’s extensive entrepreneurial insights, knowledge of applying technology to enhance processes and value for Customers, establishing business development plans, and the ability to contribute to corporate strategic direction. Mr. Thompson’s focus is companies with a large market opportunity, a business model designed to generate a significant financial return, intellectual property, and a highly competent operations team that is able to deliver important benefits to Customers including –
1. Increasing revenue
2. Delivering competitive advantage
3. Improving operational efficiency and profitability. Being an active Angel since 2000 and founder of the Corporate Angels, Ron maintains a portfolio of 15 to 20 venture investments (in both the US and Canada) and is a Board member on several of them. In addition, Ron is a member of the Canadian Venture Forum Selection Committee, an important industry event for funding companies with high growth potential. As well, Mr. Thompson presents in various venture community industry events to support entrepreneurship and provide insights on becoming more sophisticated in venture investing.
Richard Fox, Managing Director, Cross Atlantic Capital Partners
Richard M. Fox is a managing director of Cross Atlantic. Richard oversees the activities of a dedicated fund that Cross Atlantic manages, the Co-Investment 2000 Fund, and actively works with several portfolio companies, including: Broadbeam, Eduction, Ikimbo, Interactive Enterprises, First Service Network, Kanbay, Netsuite, Nomadix, and Saqqara. Prior to joining Cross Atlantic, Richard was president of Penn Janney Advisory, which managed both the direct private equity and partnership investments for The Penn Mutual Life Insurance Company and its wholly owned subsidiary, Janney Montgomery Scott. Richard has over 20 years of investment experience in venture capital, institutional investing, and commercial banking.
Carter Caldwell, Principal, Cross Atlantic Capital Partners
Carter Caldwell is a Principal at Cross Atlantic who is involved in investment due diligence, deal sourcing, as well as other Cross Atlantic operational efforts. Prior to joining Cross Atlantic, Carter founded and served as COO of Quazant Technology, Inc, the developer of the Transaction Accelerator, a high-speed transaction processing database. Prior to Quazant, Carter helped start Acorn Systems, Inc. and was integral in taking that company from pre-revenue to profitability. At Acorn, he served in the capacities of Director of Corporate Development, Product Manager and Engagement Manger. His experience is derived from positions at Acorn Systems, J.P. Morgan, Bear Stearns, and Business Philadelphia Magazine.
While at Acorn Systems, and working with distributors in the Semiconductor, Electronics, Fluid Mechanics, Chemical, Food Service, and Steel industries, Carter succeeded in returning numerous businesses to profitability using a variety of methods, including activity-based costing.
JP Morgan recognized Carter for creating a novel software analysis tool for all equities under their coverage. This tool, which utilized data such as equities' respective median volatilities and average daily volumes, enabled JP Morgan's institutional traders to make more informed trading decisions. Ultimately, this tool was used to alter the mix of equities that JP Morgan held in its Institutional Portfolio.
Jonathan Whittle, Principal, Darby Technology Ventures
Mr. Whittle is a Principal with Darby Technology Ventures with primary responsibility for its investment strategy. He joined Darby in 2002 after a decade of experience with venture capital backed telecommunications and IT services start-ups in Latin America. Prior to joining Darby, Mr. Whittle was President of Optiglobe Argentina, the Argentine subsidiary of Optiglobe Communications, Inc., a leading provider of mission critical managed hosting and co-location services in Latin America. Prior to Optiglobe, Mr. Whittle worked in various capacities for Diveo Broadband Networks, a leading provider of broadband services in Latin America, and was a founding partner of Diveo's Argentine subsidiary. Mr. Whittle holds a Masters of Arts in Latin American Studies from Georgetown University and a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Westmont College in Santa Barbara, California. He currently sits on the boards of Jackbe, Spring Wireless, Ativi, Certisign and Inova.
Elizabeth Sigety, Managing Director and Co-Founder, Delaware Crossing Investor Group
Elizabeth D. Sigety, is a partner at Fox Rothschild. She focuses her practice on business, finance and securities transactions, including private placements, public offerings, secured transactions, mergers and acquisitions, franchising and a wide variety of general corporate work. Liz co-chairs the firm’s Franchising Group and is also a member of the Securities Group and Technology & Venture Finance Group. Liz serves as a Board Member of Doylestown Hospital as well as The Village Improvement Association of Doylestown, PA. Liz received her J.D. from the University of Chicago Law School and her B.A. cum laude from Yale College.
Brad Greenwald, CEO, DLF Capital
Brad is the CEO of DLF Capital in Denver which invests in and develops startup companies in the consumer and business services, and consumer product spaces.
Brad is also a Professor at the University of Denver's Daniels College of Business where he teaches Entrepreneurial Management and Strategy in the Executive MBA program.
He brings over twenty five years of progressive experience
in launching and managing startup and corporate businesses. Brad has an extensive background in service, real estate and telecommunication businesses.
Brad began his career as a management consultant at Bain & Co. Brad helped raise $600+ million in launching and successfully building WildBlue Communications (broadband), Loyalty Management Group (consumer promotions), Springridge Development (land development) and PrimeStar (satellite TV). Brad also had successful P&L responsibility in his Vice President roles in sales, marketing and operational functions at Polaroid and Time Warner Cable.
Brad also works at a Board level with nonprofits including Oxfam America, Food Bank of the Rockies and Operation Frontline. Brad received the 2006 SOS National Community Leader Award. Brad was a 2000 Crown Fellow at the Aspen Institute.
Brad received his undergraduate degree in Economics from Princeton University. Brad received his MBA from Harvard Business School in 1990. Brad lives with his wife and 3 children in Denver, Colorado.
Julie Gerstenberger, Director External Alliances, Eastman Kodak Company
Julie pursues technologies related to digital imaging systems and services, including applications/devices, infrastructure and enabling technologies for consumer markets. Particular areas of interest include online and mobile services, distributed content management and informatics.
Julie's background is in the development and commercialization of digital imaging systems for a wide range of applications and markets, including project management, strategic planning and leadership roles. Julie has an MS in Optics and a BS in Electrical Engineering.
Harry Edelson, General Partner, Edelson Technology Partners
Harry Edelson envisioned venture capital as more than just a quest for high financial returns. Venture capital would help multinational corporations establish and attain their overall objectives. He formed a venture capital partnership which was entirely unique. Only a few corporate partners would be admitted so that they all could be well served. The corporations would be in different businesses so they could work cooperatively and even assist each other. Corporate rather than pension money would be invested so that the General Partner could help the Limited Partners without violating ERISA rules which require investments to be made solely for maximum financial returns. Investments would be made worldwide because of the diverse geographic interests of the Limited Partners and because technological innovation is not limited to the United States. Five funds, 17 years and more than $150 million later the concept of combining investment banking services, a window on technology and stellar financial returns have proven to be successful.
Harry Edelson has more than 30 years of experience in technology divided between industry and Wall Street. His former positions include senior systems computer engineer for Unisys, transmission engineer for AT&T, director of management information systems for Cities Service and director of marketing for a terminal manufacturer. Harry was a securities analyst on Wall Street covering computers, telecommunications, and office equipment for three leading investment banking firms: CS First Boston, Merrill Lynch, and Drexel Burnham Lambert. He formed Edelson Technology Inc., to serve the technology industry in venture capital, consulting, and mergers and acquisitions.
Mr. Edelson is one of the most quoted technology industry figures in the world, his views often appearing in national and international financial and trade publications. He has frequently addressed major industry forums, often as keynote speaker, and has been retained as a consultant by dozens of technology companies. He is former President of the Analysts Club, the oldest club on Wall Street, founded in 1925. Education: BS in Physics from Brooklyn College, MBA in Management from NYU, Graduate Program in Telecommunications Engineering, at The Cornell Graduate School of Electrical Engineering.
Tim Foster, Business Development Manager, Edison Venture Fund
Tim Foster serves as Manager of Business Development. Tim is responsible for managing and expanding Edison's referral source network of service provider professionals and financing sources in the Mid-Atlantic region (PA, DE, MD, VA, DC, NJ, NY, CT, MA) Tim identifies and builds new relationships for mutual referral opportunities. This includes trading deal flow and facilitating lead sharing with referral network contacts and sourcing Edison deals and portfolio company opportunities to service providers. In addition Tim represents Edison in the market on behalf of the regional investment teams. He increases awareness of and reinforces Edison's brand and strategy in each market. Tim regularly attends regional trade, venture and networking events and works closely with entrepreneurial and technology-related organizations such as ACG, MAVA, ETC, and the NJTC.
Tim previously served as the Manager of Industry Development for 1SYNC. 1SYNC is a not-for-profit subsidiary of GS1 US which specializes in data synchronization. In his role, Tim was responsible for expanding data synchronization adoption across targeted industries and global regions as well as customer relationship management. Mr. Foster brings to Edison many years of proven experience in the software and technology industry. Prior to joining 1SYNC in October 2003, he served as Director of Sales and Operations for Consolidated Business Services. He has also served in several sales and account management roles with SAP and Princeton Softech.
Tim earned his B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania
David Nevas, Business Development Associate, Edison Venture Fund
David Nevas focuses on generating investment opportunities and conducting analysis of emerging information technology companies in Pennsylvania and Delaware. He also specializes in E-Commerce, Customer Relationship Management, Human Resources, Education, Supply Chain/Logistics and Business Services.
David has over 6 years of experience in both operating and consulting roles within the technology industry. He was previously a manager at Carpathia Consulting where he led engagements with early and growth-stage clients. David worked as a consultant at IBM and PricewaterhouseCoopers on strategy and technology engagements within the High-Tech, Media, and Manufacturing industries. Additionally, David was a member of the product development team at Bookingzone.com, a startup, WAP-based reservation service.
MBA, Finance and Strategy, New York University Stern School of Business B.S., Business Information Systems, Lehigh University
Charles Beeler, General Partner, El Dorado Ventures
Charles is an accomplished venture capital investor who has been with EDV since 1999. His primary focus is on companies with the potential to radically change the capabilities, cost/performance and energy efficiency of datacenters and enterprise computing environments. This includes companies in the systems, storage and cloud computing sectors.
Prior to joining EDV, Charles served as a partner at Piper Jaffray Ventures, where he helped manage the firm’s technology venture capital funds. Charles gained early venture capital experience at Scripps Ventures, where he helped design and implement an early-stage investment strategy for a newly formed venture fund.
Early in his career, Charles was involved with the design and implementation of healthcare IT systems at the Mayo Clinic, including Mayo’s first radiology information system.
In addition to his for-profit boards, Charles serves as the Chairman of the Board of the Camp Chippewa Foundation, and works actively with several other education-based non-profits.
Charles received a Bachelor’s degree in economics from Colby College and an MBA from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School.
Saul Richter, Managing Partner, Emerald Stage2 Ventures
Mr. Richter has broad experience in the venture capital industry, having worked at a number of leading venture firms over the past 8 years. He brings to the Fund extensive experience performing due diligence and portfolio management through multiple venture cycles. Mr. Richter was most recently at Himalaya Capital, having
joined in early 2002 as a Principal. Mr. Richter has significant investment experience and has been active on the boards of a number of companies. Mr. Richter additionally brings to Starling a strong technical background in software development and systems administration.
Prior to Himalaya, Mr. Richter worked at Lucent Technologies in the New Ventures Group, where he focused on the creation and launch of software startups. In addition to Lucent, Mr. Richter has prior venture capital experience working at Softbank Ventures (now Mobius Venture Capital), Jerusalem Global Ventures and Flatiron Partners. Mr. Richter additionally has operational experience as the founder of Zapper Technologies’ US operations, where he formed and built out the company’s US office. Mr. Richter has additional prior experience working in investment banking at Salomon Smith Barney and product development at Dubois, Brown & Co, now a division of SS&C Technologies (Nasdaq: SSNC).
Dean Sciorillo, Senior Associate, EnerTech Capital
Dean joined EnerTech in 2004 and is responsible for sourcing, analyzing and supporting EnerTech portfolio companies. Prior to joining EnerTech, Dean spent 15 years with Exelon Corporation most recently in the corporate venture capital group. Prior to that, he was a Business Planning Manager focusing on the long term strategic and financial planning of the Enterprises Business Unit and worked closely with the retail energy, telecommunication and utility infrastructure businesses. Earlier in his career, he held financial positions with several start-up businesses of Exelon including the company’s energy management and consulting practice and onsite energy services business.
Dean received a BS in Finance from LaSalle University and an MBA from the Fox School of Temple University.
Jim Macdonald , Managing Director, First Analysis Venture Capital
Jim Macdonald is a managing director coordinating research and investment in selected areas of the outsourced services sector. He coordinates research coverage of leading private and publicly traded companies in his sectors. Prior to joining First Analysis in 1997, he was a general manager at Nalco Chemical Co., where he played a key role in expanding Nalco’s service offering to include operating and leasing equipment at customer sites, which led to the formation of a joint venture with U.S. Filter Co. Earlier, he was with a subsidiary of Ecolab Inc. He earned an MBA from Harvard University and a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from Cornell University, where he also earned the university’s highest award in that discipline.
Howard Morgan, Partner (and Angel Investor), First Round Capital (and NY Angels)
Howard Lee Morgan is President of Arca Group Inc. in Villanova, PA, a Director of Idealab the Pasadena, CA based creator and operator of internet companies, where was a founding investor in 1996 and served as President of idealab! New York, a partner with First Round Capital, and a member of the New York Angels. He received a Ph.D. in Operations Research from Cornell University in 1968, and a B.S. in physics from City College of the City University of New York in 1965. He is helping to nurture a number of Idealab companies, including CarsDirect.com, the leading internet seller of automobiles, Partsearch, providing back end solutions for finding parts in the electronics field, Evolution Robotics, Enery Innovations, Newbury Networks and Picasa, Inc., offering digital photography acessing and sharing solutions.
Thomas Blum, Managing Director, G.C. Andersen Partners, LLC
Mr. Blum has spent 22 years as an investment banker and an investor in private equity and venture capital opportunities. Before joining G.C. Andersen Partners in 2006, Mr. Blum ran Channel Capital LLC, a firm he founded in 2001 to provide venture capital and financial advisory services to emerging companies. While with Channel Capital, he became an active angel investor, backing eleven companies. From 1998 to 2001, Mr. Blum was a Managing Director in the private equity firm, Columbia Financial Partners, during which time he helped manage the reorganization and liquidation of ContiFinancial Corp., an $11 billion mortgage company. Previously, Mr. Blum spent 14 years as an investment banker with Salomon Brothers Inc. and Bear Stearns & Co. During 1992 to 1998 he was actively involved in mergers & acquisitions, IPOs, high-yield and investment grade debt and corporate advisory transactions for a wide range of insurance and specialty finance companies. From 1989 to 1992, he was based in Tokyo and oversaw the Salomon Brothers’ Japanese and Asian Financial Institutions activities. In the 1980’s, Mr. Blum was deeply involved in the then emerging commercial mortgage securitization market. Mr. Blum serves on the Board of Directors of Landauer Metropolitan Inc., Supertron Technologies, Inc. and Interactive Frontiers, Inc. Mr. Blum received a BS in Engineering from Princeton University and an MBA from Harvard Business School.
Scott Chou, Partner, Gabriel Venture Partners
Scott Chou joined Gabriel Venture Partners in 2000, bringing a broad base of experience in venture capital, technology, and startup operations to the Firm. His extensive experience working with early stage technology ventures is a direct reflection of his passion for introducing innovations to society. Scott leads Gabriel's Disruptive Technologies practice and proactively manages relationships with universities as well as corporate and government labs in search of groundbreaking innovations with enormous market potential.
Scott entered the venture capital arena via the Kauffman Fellows Program, a prestigious fellowship in venture capital awarded annually to a select number of recipients. He completed his fellowship at Onset Ventures, a groundbreaking firm in seed capital investing. Scott currently serves as Chairman of the Kauffman Fellows Alumni Association. He is also the author of Maxims, Morals, and Metaphors: A Philosophical Guide to Venture Capital , a popular book used in teaching the art of venture capital.
Scott joined his first startup as a software developer while still in high school, working on a small business accounting package. He has since worked for five other technology ventures as well as world-renowned research and development organizations. At Bellcore, Scott conducted pioneering research in broadband packet switching for the Internet. At IBM, he received an Outstanding Technical Achievement Award for his design work in enterprise storage systems. Scott was also instrumental in the launch of the handheld computing market while working at Poqet Computer, a startup later acquired by Fujitsu. From there, he founded Memory Card Associates, a systems integration firm focused on portable computing. Most recently, Scott was the founding manager of the engineering and manufacturing organizations within Integrated Computing Engines (ICE), a venture-backed startup in the graphics workstation market.
Scott is a director in three Asia-Pacific joint ventures launched by U.S.-based portfolio companies. These ventures typify Gabriel's strategy of assisting companies with outsourcing and business development in Asia-Pacific. Scott speaks Mandarin Chinese and splits time between his San Francisco and Shanghai residences.
Scott serves as a director on the boards of Boston-Power, LVL7 Systems, NextG Networks, and SkyCross. In addition, Scott is a board member-elect for The Center for Venture Education, which runs the Kauffman Fellows Program. He also serves on the advisory boards of the University of Maryland Technology Visionary Series and the TiE Semiconductor SIG.
MS – Engineering, Stanford University (full fellowship)
MS – Computer Science, Harvard University (full fellowship)
BS – Electrical Engineering, California Institute of Technology (with honors)
Rohit Bodas, Director, Hartford Ventures
Rohit Bodas is Director of Strategic Investments for Hartford Ventures. In this role, Rohit is responsible for identifying, executing and managing strategic minority private equity investments on the behalf of The Hartford.
Prior to joining The Hartford, Rohit worked at Motorola for 9+ years in various roles including venture capital, business development and R&D. As part of Motorola Ventures, Rohit sourced and analyzed a broad range of investment opportunities in various sectors including digital media, internet & mobile applications, wireless infrastructure, public-safety. He also held business development roles to incubate and commercialize new technologies. Rohit joined Motorola as a R&D engineer and has developed key multimedia technologies for mobile phones, STB and public safety applications Prior to Motorola, Rohit worked at a technology startup in India developing cryptography and data encryption software.
Rohit earned his MBA from the Kellogg School of Management majoring in Finance and Strategy. He also has a Masters degree in Computer Science (University of Toledo) and a Bachelors degree in Electrical Engineering (University of Pune, India).
John Hall, Managing Director, Horizon Ventures
John Hall has more than 16 years of experience in the venture capital industry . He was a General Partner of Newtek Ventures from 1989 until 1999, when he co-founded Horizon Ventures where he also is a General Partner. Prior to his venture capital career, John had broad experience in senior financial and general management roles over a 20-year period in the pharmaceutical, semiconductor and software industries and was a co-founder of 3 successful software companies. As a venture capitalist, John has been a member of 14 board of directors of both private and public companies and currently serves on the boards of four private companies. He holds a B.S. degree in Accounting and Finance and an MBA in Finance from San Jose State University and did Ph.D. work in Finance at the University of Santa Clara.
John Filla, Managing Partner, VES Partners / Houston Angel Network
Utilizing deep experience internationally in contracts, finance, sales and operations, John is able to arrange and/or deploy capital and human resources wisely in a variety of companies and industries. Strategic planning, governance issues and M&A are key areas of expertise.
In the early-stage markets, he evaluates business plans and makes recommendations which will enable successful growth and significant exits within 4-6 years, to the ultimate benefit of the equity holders.
John is on the Board of Directors at the Houston Angel Network, and also holds Board, officer, and/or equity positions in a number of the entities that he has invested in or consulted for through VES Partners.
Via FundingPost events, John has both invested in and raised capital for
deals in the past.
"A great event, I know that I’ve invested in at least one deal associated with FundingPost events, and it’s a great networking opportunity with the founders and the VCs that are there. I’m looking forward to this one!"
- John Filla, Angel Investor, Houston Angel Network
Matthew Denesuk, PH.D., Partner, IBM Venture Capital Group
I am currently a Partner in IBM's Venture Capital Group.
Prior to this I held various positions in IBM Global Services, focussed on transforming the business toward models which are less labor-based and which improve productivity and differentiation through increased use of innovative technologies (what we broadly refer to as "services technology assets").
Prior to this at IBM, I have been involved with developing emerging businesses, based at least in part from technologies developed in our Research laboratories. This has included a variety of businesses based on hardware, software, services, and various nanotech-related technologies.
I also serve as an advisor to several small companies.
Prior to joining IBM, I co-founded and managed several companies in the areas importing, marketing, and distribution of consumer products; specialty polymer products; and intellectual property and product development.
Previously, I was a Research Professor of Materials Science and Engineering at the University of Arizona.
I also served for eleven years as a consultant, where I assisted large and small businesses with managing product research and development efforts and with IP strategy and litigation.
I have led fundamental and applied research efforts relating to optical and electrical properties of nanostructured materials and devices, with a focus on electrochromic technology for "smart windows." I have also led research efforts relating to interfacial properties of medical polymers and to wetting and fluid flow in microporous materials. I have authored numerous publications and book chapters in the technical literature.
I received my B.S. degree in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from M.I.T., and I received M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Materials Science and Engineering and Optical Sciences from the University of Arizona.
Chip Austin, Partner, i-Hatch Ventures
Chip has advised and built companies in the Technology and Media industries for his entire career. In addition to founding BOL.com, Bertelsmann’s E-commerce division, Chip was a member of the senior executive team leading the buyout and restructuring of Prodigy, and was a co-founder of McKinsey’s Interactive Practice, where he spent seven years advising Fortune 500 companies on their media strategies. Most recently, Chip was President and CEO of Bertelsmann Online, where he was responsible for building Bertelsmann’s global e-commerce business. Chip maintains an advisory and investor relationship with Bertelsmann Ventures, an independent venture capital fund capitalized by Bertelsmann. Chip also served as Acting CEO of European-based DealPilot.com, a Bertelsmann Ventures portfolio company. Prior to Bertelsmann, Chip was a member of the management-led buyout of Prodigy, where he was SVP of Sales and Business Development and General Manager of Prodigy's first Internet Service. Before joining Prodigy, Chip spent seven years at McKinsey in the Media and Interactive practices advising clients out of New York, Los Angeles, Australia and various European offices. While at McKinsey, as a co-founder of the Interactive Practice, Chip shaped the New Media strategies of the world's largest media companies in the fields of newspapers, magazines, yellow pages/classifieds, cable programming, network TV and film studio production.
David J. Freschman, Managing Principal, Innovation Ventures
David J. Freschman is a Managing Principal of Innovation Capital Advisors, LLC (ICA), and a Founding Member of the ARC Angel Fund. ICA serves as the management company of Innovation Ventures, L.P. (IV) and the Delaware Innovation Fund (DIF). He served as the President and CEO of the DIF since its establishment in 1995. The DIF is a seed and early stage venture capital fund that focuses on entrepreneurial ventures in the Mid-Atlantic region. Mr. Freschman has been responsible for all aspects of IV’s and the DIF’s management since its inception, including the business strategy, fiscal and operational management, raising investment capital, and evaluating all investment opportunities and portfolio company management.
Mr. Freschman is active in the venture and entrepreneurial communities, sits on a number of Boards, and has been a lecturer on such topics at The White House Conference on Small Business, The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, Temple University, the University of Delaware, Goldey-Beacom College, and Loyola College in Baltimore. He is the creator and founder of Early Stage East – the premier early stage venture capital fair on the East Coast. In 2001, Mr. Freschman was appointed by Gov. Ruth Ann Minner to chair the venture capital study of the state’s Strategic Economic Council. Mr. Freschman was appointed and served a three-year term representing New Castle County, Delaware on the Small Business Advisory Council of the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia through 2002.
Prior to establishing the DIF, Mr. Freschman was responsible for the formation of the corporate finance advisory division of McBride Shopa and Company, one of the largest certified public accounting and consulting firms in Delaware. Mr. Freschman began his career with the Enterprise Group of the Philadelphia office of Arthur Andersen, LLP, from 1984 through 1989. Mr. Freschman graduated with honors with an MBA from Loyola College of Maryland and cum laude from the University of Delaware with a B.S. in accounting, where he was a John B. Lynch Scholar. He is also a member of Beta Gamma Sigma – the National Honor Society.
"The Perfect Venture Conference is a powerful event for entrepreneurs to attend in order to meet, collaborate and engage in serious discussions with investors in order to achieve the goals of their enterprises and individual aspirations. An event not to miss!"
- David J. Freschman, Innovation Ventures
Sita Vasan, Director, Intel Capital
Sita Vasan has worked for Intel Capital's Strategic Investment team for the past 9 years. During this time, she has closed over 60 venture capital investments in the media, semiconductor, wireless, enterprise software, storage, and optical sectors. She now focuses on digital home investments based in NYC. She has 15 years of prior investment banking experience where she worked in London for Orion Royal Bank & Bank of Tokyo, in Paris as Vice President and head of Banque Indosuez’s Foreign Swap Marketing team and at the private sector arm of the World Bank, International Finance Corp (IFC). At IFC she managed the Client Derivative Management team and worked in the Telecom / Infrastructure project finance team. Her education includes an MBA from Wharton (University of Pennsylvania) and BA from Bryn Mawr College.
Debra Guerin Beresini, Managing Director, International Venture Fund
Debra R. Guerin Beresini is a co-founder and Managing Director of International Venture Fund (IVF). IVF is a Silicon Valley based venture fund focused on seed and early stage emerging growth investment opportunities in the geographic areas of Hawaii, New Mexico, Arizona and Utah, as well as Silicon Valley. Ms. Guerin Beresini has served as CEO of invencor, inc, manager of IVF, since its inception in April 1997.
Ms. Guerin Beresini previously held senior positions at the seed/technology-transfer venture firm of AR&D Corp., at the venture leasing arm of Ford/US Leasing, as a venture investor at Technology Funding, and as Senior Vice President and Manager of the National Division at Silicon Valley Bank. Ms. Guerin Beresini specializes in life science companies, including TheraTx (IPO in 1994, acquired by Vencor for $550 million in 1997), Systemix (acquired by Sandoz) and Napo Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (IPO in 2006, LSE). Ms. Guerin Beresini was on the board of Napo until its recent IPO. Ms. Guerin Beresini speaks at various national conferences on venture capital and technology transfer. She presently sits on the Board of AssistGuide, Inc., San Ramon, CA; the non-profit Hawaii Venture Capital Association and HiBEAM, a Hawaii based business accelerator. She is also a member of the Board of Trustees for the Wayne Brown Institute located in Salt Lake City, Utah. She graduated summa cum laude from Dominican University and has a certificate in Global Bio from UC Berkeley.
Kirk Westbrook, Principal, International Venture Fund
D. Kirk B. Westbrook is a co-founder and Managing Director of International Venture Fund (IVF). IVF is a Silicon Valley based venture fund focused on seed and early stage emerging growth investment opportunities in the geographic areas of Hawaii, New Mexico, Arizona and Utah, as well as Silicon Valley. Mr. Westbrook is also the President and Chief Financial Officer of invencor, inc., which manages IVF. In 1997, invencor, inc. assumed management of an existing seed fund associated with incubators in the State of Arizona , the Arizona Technology Venture Fund (ATVF). Several new investments were made and ATVF was fully liquidated in 2005. Mr. Westbrook has or previously has held board seats on four of IVF’s portfolio companies and was instrumental in the sale of AdOn Network, Inc. to Prime Visibility Media Group.
Mr. Westbrook has been involved with finance for approximately 20 years. In 1989, he accepted a position with Silicon Valley Bank, a nationally recognized debt and equity provider which specializes in serving early stage, pre-profit technology companies, most of which are venture backed. While at Silicon Valley, Mr. Westbrook worked in all of the lending areas of the Bank, as well as managed an extensive portfolio for several years in the Bank’s workout group. His last position was as Vice President in the Bank's National Division, then one of the fastest growing divisions within the Bank, where he actively developed client and venture capital relationships in Hawaii, Illinois, Minnesota, Texas, Utah and Wisconsin. He departed his post in April 1997 to form invencor, inc. In addition to his management and investment activity with IVF, Mr. Westbrook is a reviewer of Center for Commercialization of Advanced Technology grant submissions and an invited business plan judge or company selection panelist for venture conferences in the states of Arizona, Hawaii, Illinois, Texas and Utah. He served for many years as a board member of the non-profit Hawaii Venture Capital Association and is a member of the executive committee of HiBEAM, a Hawaii based business accelerator. Mr. Westbrook is a graduate of San Jose State University.
Scott Kehoe, Managing Principal, Inverness Graham Investments
Prior to joining Inverness, Scott was a Senior Manager with Ernst & Young where he was a key player in the launch of two strategic business units within E&Y's Management Consulting practice: Strategic Advisory Services (E&Y's corporate strategy consulting practice) and Connected Enterprise Solutions (venture and consulting group focused on leveraging new technologies). Scott served as CEO of Mediastream, an early stage technology services firm, and has extensive experience assisting Fortune 500 companies in developing and executing growth-oriented strategies. Scott earned his BA from Dartmouth College and his MBA, Beta Gamma Sigma, from the Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern.
Larry Chaityn, President, Keiretsu Forum
Larry Chaityn is President of the New York Tri-State Chapters of The Keiretsu Forum, the largest global private equity investment network of accredited angel investors, venture capitalists, and corporate/institutional investors. Keiretsu Forum members invest in high-quality, diverse investment opportunities in emerging technologies, healthcare/life sciences, real estate, consumer products and other industries with high growth opportunity. Our community is strengthened through education on angel investing, as well as charitable and social activities.
Larry is an expert in the development and execution of performance management and corporate acceleration strategies that help organizations achieve their financial and operational goals. His 18 years of experience consulting in industries such as Technology/Software, Healthcare, Life Science and Manufacturing on multi-million dollar engagements has helped shape the vision and strategy for True North Global Partners.
Larry is an active member in the National Association of Health Services Executives, Turnaround Management Association, and The Institute for Healthcare Improvement, Health Leaders of NY, The American College of Healthcare Executives, and the American Society for Quality's Healthcare Division and the Manhattan Chamber of Commerce in NYC. He often speaks on topics of change, systems thinking, effective communication, and causal problem analysis. Larry held senior management positions with the consulting practices of Cap Gemini, Ernst & Young and Oracle Corporation. Larry graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Marketing and a Masters in Business Administration from Fairleigh Dickinson University. He has completed additional executive education programs in Management from the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School of Business.
Konstantine Drakonakis, Director, Launch Capital
Konstantine Drakonakis, P.E., Director of the New Haven Office of LaunchCapital LLC, brings over ten years of environmental and energy technology investment and engineering consulting experience to the LaunchCapital team. LaunchCapital actively engages university startups and entrepreneurs seeking seed and early stage funding in a broad array of industries, including Medical Device, Cleantech, and IT.
Konstantine was the Manager of New Technology Investments and Infrastructure Development at Connecticut Innovations, Inc, which administers the Connecticut Clean Energy Fund, prior to opening LaunchCapital's New Haven Office. Konstantine oversaw venture stage
equity investments, project finance for beta and alpha stage technology projects and clean energy infrastructure developments
programs for the CCEF. His project and investment experience covers the full range of cleantech technologies, ranging from renewables, fuel cell and hydrogen generation, and smart-grid and energy storage
technologies, as well as water supply & infrastructure, environmental
remediation technologies, and natural resource management. While at CI, Konstantine structured, financed, and managed multiple emergent renewable energy company projects worth over $11M. He has been very active in the clean energy community, speaking and instructing events
covering renewables and carbon markets, resource management, and investment workshops. Konstantine draws on his experience in environmental and civil engineering project management and consulting
to evaluate technologies for their investment potential as well as the
business model's integrity and feasibility.
Konstantine received his Masters in Environmental Management from Yale
University, with a focus in Industrial Environmental Management and
Industrial Ecology. He earned his civil and environmental engineering
degree from the University of Vermont, and is a member of the National
Civil Engineering Honors Society. He is a co-founder of the Cleantech
in Connecticut Network.
Kyle Harris, Managing Director, Liquidity Works
Kyle Harris is the Managing Director of Liquidity Works. He began his career in the Foreign Military Sales group for the Navy's F-18 aircraft program, ultimately running the team that sold over $3.5 Billion dollars is USG equipment worldwide. He next ran international marketing for the NYMEX crude oil contract working with foreign governments and multinationals to develop risk management programs around the world's largest traded commodity. After receiving his MBA from the Thunderbird School of Global Business he began an early stage incubator which funded several notable projects. As a operator/entrepreneur, he was COO of IMTI Systems an insurance software provider, and was the founder of Global Detection and Reporting, Inc a company offering innovative risk detection tools for illegal drugs in the workplace. Kyle is married, has three children and lives in NYC.
Brett Topche, Managing Partner, MentorTech Ventures
Mr. Topche joined MentorTech Ventures in 2007 and serves as a Principal. He was previously a member of the Fund Investments Team at Hamilton Lane Advisors, a fund-of-funds manager and private equity investment consultant. In this capacity, he evaluated private equity funds across a broad spectrum of stages and strategies on behalf of both discretionary and non-discretionary clients. During his time at Hamilton Lane, Mr. Topche reviewed more than 100 funds, including venture capital, mezzanine, buyout and real estate funds. Based in part on reports he drafted, more than $1 billion was invested into these funds.
Prior to working for Hamilton Lane, Mr. Topche was an Associate with NJTC Venture Fund, where he focused on investments in early-stage companies in the software, Internet and communications sectors. His responsibilities included deal flow generation, initial company reviews, performing due diligence on potential investments, participating in deal structuring, reviewing legal documentation and working with companies post-investment, occasionally as an Observer on Boards of Directors.
He previously worked for MRA International in real estate development consulting and for the accounting firm Frankel and Topche.
Mr. Topche is a magna cum laude graduate of the Wharton School, with a B.S. in Economics, with concentrations in Finance and Legal Studies and a Political Science minor from the College and Arts and Sciences.
Catherine Lockhart, Executive Vice President and COO, Meridian Management Group, Inc.
Catherine D. Lockhart is the Executive Vice President and co-founder of Meridian Management Group, Inc. (MMG), which was established in 1995. With more than 19 years of financial experience, Ms. Lockhart specializes in commercial lending, venture capital investing and program development for primarily minority and small businesses. In 1990, Lockhart became the President and Chief Executive Officer of the Greater Detroit BIDCO, Inc., a business and industrial development corporation. She left the private and for-profit, minority-owned and operated firm in December 1994. Before her leadership at BIDCO, Ms. Lockhart was the Deputy Director of the Maryland Small Business Development Financing Authority (MSBDFA) for seven years.
Thomas Penn, General Partner, Meridian Venture Partners
Mr. Penn is a General Partner of the Meridian Venture Funds and has over 15 years of experience in starting, managing, and financing high growth companies in the Mid-Atlantic region. Before joining Meridian Venture Partners as a General Partner, he served as a Partner at Boston Millennia Partners, a $600 million private equity firm. From 1994 to 1998, he was President and Chief Executive Officer of Tektagen, Inc., a leading contract services organization which provides a wide range of services to the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries.
Immediately prior to joining Tektagen, Mr. Penn was President of Independence Ventures, Inc. a firm that specialized in starting and growing high potential, technology based companies. Earlier in his career he held a variety of positions in industry and venture capital. He has been on the founding team of three biotechnology firms. He is immediate past President of the Pennsylvania Biotechnology Association and recently served as Co-Chair of Pennsylvania's Technology 21 Biotechnology Network.
Robert P. Mahoney , Principal, Middlebury Venture Partners
Mr. Mahoney holds a B.A. (cum laude) in Mathematics from the University of Rochester and an M.B.A. with a concentration in Finance from New York University. From 1977 until 1988, Mr. Mahoney held various positions with Continental Can Co., Inc., where his last position was General Manager of Development and Real Estate. In 1996, Mr. Mahoney joined with a partner to organize BTS Capital Holdings, L.P. (ABTS@) as a Managing Principal. In 2004, Mr. Mahoney organized Hillcrest Capital Partners, LP and associated entities as a new investment fund with a plan to invest in intermediate term, fully-secured, high-yield notes. Mr. Mahoney also serves as a member of the Board of Directors or Advisory Boards of several companies.
Jeffrey Seltzer, Angel Investor, New York Angels
Jeffrey L. Seltzer is Managing Partner of Pierce Yates Ventures which provides venture capital and consulting to the financial services, business services, education and sports industries. He is a member of the board of directors of the New York Angels.
Jeff was the Chief Operating Officer of Adirondack Trading Partners from 1999 through the exit of its businesses in 2005. Adirondack was a start up venture formed to capitalize on electronic trading technology through the creation of new securities exchanges and the development of market making capabilities on those exchanges. It was the corporate founder of the International Securities Exchange, now the largest equity options exchange in the U.S., which had its IPO in 2005.
He joined CIBC World Markets in 1994 and from 1996 to 1999 was Deputy Chairman of its U.S. broker- dealer focusing on the credit, derivatives and wealth management businesses as well as regional strategies for CIBC. Before that Jeff was with Lehman Brothers where he was Managing Director and one of the founders of its Financial Products Group. In eight years at Lehman he played a major role in structuring and executing innovative international financial transactions and the management of the new product development process. Jeff started his career as a securities lawyer in private practice in New York City.
Jeff is a Special Professor of Law at Hofstra University Law School where he developed and teaches a seminar in Complex Corporate Transactions. He is also a Faculty Associate of the Merrill Lynch Center for the Study of International Financial Services and Markets at Hofstra's Zarb School of Business. Jeff is a member of the Board of Overseers of the University Libraries of the University of Pennsylvania, the Advisory Board of the Huntsman Program in International Studies and Business, the Advisory Board of the Wharton Sports Business Initiative and the Major Gift Committee of Penn's $3.5 billion capital campaign.
He served as an advisor for six years to the U.S. Small Business Administration and as a joint advisor on trade policy to the U.S. Department of Commerce and the U.S. Trade Representative for four years. He served as Vice Chairman of the Institute for International Bankers and was the founder and Chairman of the Swap and Derivative Products Committee of the Securities Industry Association. He is also a member of the Board of Directors of the Nassau County Sports Commission.
Jeff received a B.S. in Econ. from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and a J.D. from the Georgetown University Law Center.
Robert Brill, Managing Partner, Newlight Associates
Mr. Brill is a founding Managing Partner of Newlight Associates and was previously a General Partner of PolyVentures, venture capital funds whose principal investment focus was on early stage investments in technology companies. Before joining PolyVentures, Mr. Brill was a successful "turn around" CEO at two technology companies, Algorex Corporation and Sipex Corporation. Previously, Mr. Brill served as General Manager of Harris Corporation's CMOS Semiconductor Division, where he was responsible for launching the world's first two commercial 16-bit CMOS microprocessors. From 1972 to 1980 he was employed by the IBM Corporation where he held various positions in engineering and management. Mr. Brill was a founding member of the Technical Advisory Board of the Semiconductor Research Corporation. Mr. Brill holds a Ph.D. in Physics from Brown University and a B.A. and a B.S. in Engineering Physics from Lehigh University, both with honors. Mr. Brill holds multiple patents and invention disclosures.
Hitesh Anand, Director of Technology Strategy and Partnerships, Nokia
Hitesh Anand, veteran in the semiconductor & mobile communications industry with more than 10 years of experience currently serves as Senior Manager, Scouting & Corporate Business Development, for Nokia. Hitesh is responsible for discovering, identifying and validating external innovations in North America, using an "outside-in" venture capital approach, to help create new business opportunities for Nokia. In this role, Hitesh drives the Corporate Business Development open innovation process in North America by screening and analyzing start-ups and proposing & steering high impact candidates for new business opportunities.
Hitesh joined Nokia in 2005, and has held various positions including Senior Manager, Corporate Strategy where he helped drive Nokiaï¿½s technology strategy.
At Nokia, Hitesh was instrumental in developing Nokiaï¿½s Symbian Strategy leading to its subsequent acquisition; providing guidance to the Web Runtime, Browser, Open Foundation & Linux strategy work; formulating the competitive strategy for Java business group; recommending action and influencing change in Nokia Semiconductor Strategy; as well as analyzing acquisition targets and performing quantitative analysis to drive business decision making for Nokia Software Strategy.
Hitesh has held business & engineering positions at Lucent Technologies, Analog Devices and Motorola Semiconductor Product Sector (now Freescale).
Hitesh earned a an MBA from Duke University, USA; an MSE in Electrical Engineering from Arizona State University, USA; and a B.Tech in Electronics & Communication Engineering from Guru Nanak Dev University, India.
Robert Wilson, Principal Owner, North Sea Ventures
Robert A. Wilson is Chairman, CEO & President of Sea Holdings, Ltd. He has led a distinguished career as manager and developer of companies; he has twenty years experiences in the business and financial world. Mr. Wilson has worked with many companies in many industries in many stages of development. Mr. Wilson has spent time as a professor of Finance at both the Brentwood and Southampton campus’s of Long Island University, as well as the Riverhead and Selden Campus of Suffolk County Community College. Mr. Wilson holds a degree of Associates in Applied Science in Business Administration from Suffolk County Community College, a Bachelor of Science in Management of the Sports Industries from the University of New Haven and a Master of Science in Finance and Financial Services from the University of New Haven.
Matt Bieber, Senior Associate, Originate Ventures
Matt was formerly with Bear Stearns in the Financial Analytics and Structured Transactions group (F.A.S.T.). Matt was also an investment banking analyst with Fairmount Partners, a regional investment banking boutique. He has been a member of Barclays Capital in the distressed debt group, an overseas research analyst for Deloitte & Touche based in Prague and an intern for Senator Arlen Specter’s office in addition to a volunteer for former Senator Rick Santorum's campaign.
Prior to his formal business experience, Matt founded an online entertainment company focused on massive online roleplaying games, which he rolled into IGE.com where he became a premier account vendor. Matt has recently been named Treasurer of the Lehigh Valley Network of Young Professionals and has been a judge for Wharton’s VCIC competition. Matt is a graduate of Lehigh University with a BS in Business with a concentration in Financial Mathematics.
"I found the Perfect Venture Conference to be the optimal setting for entrepreneurs to have a captive investor audience. For an entrepreneur being able to hear investors on the panel & understanding their philosophy is very important, coupled with a speed pitching session makes for a potentially powerful combination from an entrepreneurial funding standpoint."
- Matt Bieber, Originate Ventures
Bill Funcannon, Managing Director, OVP Venture Partners
Bill Funcannon joined OVP Venture Partners in 1989, first as Controller and then as Managing Director and Chief Financial Officer. In this role he reviews all financing documents, negotiates term sheets, structures deals and assists in the due diligence process. Bill is responsible for the firm's day-to-day administrative activities and all its financial and reporting functions. Bill also sits on the Boards of LeMond Fitness and M2E, and is a back-up Board member for DepotPoint and Avenda.
Prior to joining OVP, Bill spent eight years as Venture Fund Controller at Hambrecht & Quist, where he managed over $700 million in assets. Prior to H&Q Bill was a Registered Representative with the brokerage firm of CD Anderson & Co.
Himanshu Choksi, Managing Director, Pacifica Fund
Himanshu Choksi brings to Pacifica over eighteen years of experience in general management, product development, marketing, and new venture development in the internet, communications, and semiconductor industries.
Prior to co-founding Pacifica, Himanshu co-founded two startups and held senior management positions in several private and public companies.
Tim Wilson, Partner, Partech International
Tim joined Partech International in 2001 and focuses on communications and components investments.
Between 1997 and 2001, Tim was the Chief Marketing Officer for Digital Island, a Partech portfolio company. The company was acquired by Cable & Wireless in 2001 for $350M. Prior to Digital Island, Tim was a General Manager at Lucent Technology where he led the international voice communications product management team (now Avaya) with P&L for product lines generating over $2B in annual sales and coauthored a VOIP related patent. Before Lucent, Tim held a variety of senior management positions within AT&T (North America and Australia) and AT&T Bell Labs from 1983-1995.
Tim's current portfolio companies include Discera, Invensense, Spudnik and Teknovus where he holds a board seat with each company.He graduated summa cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa from Bowdoin College receiving his undergraduate degree in Physics. He received his MBA from Duke University's Fuqua School of Business where he was named a Fuqua Scholar.
Richard Irving, Managing Partner, Pond Venture Partners
Based in Silicon Valley, Richard has over twenty years experience in venture capital, business management, marketing and engineering in technology companies including Pond, AT&T Bell Labs, Advanced Micro Devices, Brooktree, and Irving International. Starting as a chip designer at Bell Labs, and strategic marketing manager at AMD, Richard later managed three business units at Brooktree with full P&L responsibility. These grew from as small as $1M up to $90M. Richard has been involved in over $400 million worth of deals, including two initial public offerings, several acquisitions, and many private financings. Co-founder of Pond, Richard serves as Director of Transitive,picoChip, and Nanotech. Richard has a B.Sc. (1st Class Hons.) and an M.Sc. in Electrical Engineering from Manchester University.
Jeffrey M. Krauss, Managing Member, Psilos
Jeffrey joined Psilos in March 2000 with a focus on investments in the healthcare services, healthcare information technology, specialty pharmaceutical and medical instrumentation segments. He currently serves on the Boards of Versamed, Valera Pharmaceuticals, HealthEdge, OneShield.
Prior to joining Psilos, Mr. Krauss was a general partner at Nazem & Company, a New York-based venture capital firm, from 1990 to 2000, where he specialized in investments in the healthcare services and healthcare information technology segments. Prior to joining Nazem & Company, Mr. Krauss was an attorney with the law firm of Simpson, Thacher & Bartlett, where he specialized in private equity transactions and worked extensively on transactions originated by KKR. Prior to that, Mr. Krauss was an auditor with the accounting firm of Ernst & Young. Mr. Krauss is currently a volunteer with the New York City Investment Fund in the Fund’s Healthcare Sector Group. Mr. Krauss performs various services for the Fund, including representing the Fund on the Boards of several portfolio companies.
Mr. Krauss graduated magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting from the State University of New York at Albany and he graduated cum laude with a Juris Doctor degree from Harvard Law School . Mr. Krauss is a Certified Public Accountant, licensed in the State of New York , and is also licensed in the State of New York as an Attorney.
Habib Kairouz, Managing Partner, Rho Ventures
Prior to joining Rho in 1993, Habib worked in investment banking and leveraged buyout in New York with Reich & Co. and Jesup & Lamont. He received an MBA from Columbia University. His current and former board seats include: Avolent, Innerwireless, Intralinks, iVillage, ReachLocal, Tripod, Tacoda, Travel Ad Network, Waterfront Media, and Yantra.
Habib is a Managing Partner of Rho Capital Partners and Rho Ventures and serves on the investment committee of Rho Fund Investors and Rho Canada.
Habib Kairouz, Managing Partner, Rho Ventures
Prior to joining Rho in 1993, Habib worked in investment banking and leveraged buyout in New York with Reich & Co. and Jesup & Lamont. He received an MBA from Columbia University. His current and former board seats include: Avolent, Innerwireless, Intralinks, iVillage, ReachLocal, Tripod, Tacoda, Travel Ad Network, Waterfront Media, and Yantra.
Habib is a Managing Partner of Rho Capital Partners and Rho Ventures and serves on the investment committee of Rho Fund Investors and Rho Canada.
Jon Staenberg, Partner, Rustic Canyon Partners
on Staenberg has worked with venture-backed technology companies for 20 years in several capacities: a founder, manager, and venture capitalist. As an entrepreneur he has established two companies, served on the senior management team of several early stage organizations, and provided venture capital funding to more than 100 start-ups. He is one of the most experienced venture capitalists in the Pacific Northwest, having raised three funds totaling over $300 million.
Early in his career, Jon established several marketing groups at Microsoft where he worked from 1988 through 1994. He then joined the senior management team of Virtual i-O, a venture-backed startup, as VP of Sales & Marketing. Pursuing his passion for helping to establish and grow great companies, he has spent the last ten years raising and deploying venture capital with a focus on Silicon Valley and Seattle-based startups. In 2004, Jon joined Rustic Canyon Partners, heading up their Seattle office.
Jon currently is a director on the boards of ePartners and Limelife, and serves on the advisory boards of New Vine Logistics, Vista Broadband, Prime Advantage, Efficient Frontier, and uReach.com.
He graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Stanford University, where he received his BS, MA, and MBA.
Frank Maresca, President, Saratoga Equity, Inc.
Frank R. Maresca, Jr., Currently is the President of Saratoga Equity and World Medical both firms specializing in Technology and Life Sciences. Mr. Maresca companies serve dozens of clients globally. In the course of his career, Mr. Maresca has successfully taken companies public, effectively led several mergers and acquisitions and raised funds for public and private ventures poised for rapid expansion. He also serves as the Chief Financial Officer of Micro Algae Corporation a Chilean based Pharmaceutical Company. Mr. Maresca also serves on the Board of Arcimboldo, a Swedish based Pharmaceutical company, Arcimboldo AB is a Swedish Biotech company located in Stockholm and dedicated to the research and development of krill enzymes (Krillase®) for pharmaceuticals (wound healing, virology) and OTC (dental plaque products). Mobile-XS, an international company which provides highly cost-effective solutions based on wireless data and internet technologies and Lab Mentors which provides guided on-line labs for web-based training. Mr. Maresca was the Vice President of Strategic Acquisitions and than CEO of Dstage.com a reverse incubator from December 1999 until January 31, 2003. Mr. Maresca also served as the CFO of Longport Inc., a medical technology company specializing in high resolution ultrasound imaging. From 1995 to 1997 he served as a Trader for D. Weckstein & Co. an Institutional Investment Banking firm. Prior to that Mr Maresca was the CEO of BMV Financial, he oversaw the operations of Yee, Desmond, Schroeder and Allen, Inc west coast (OSJ) office of supervisory jurisdiction, directing and supporting all brokerage activity and operations.
Elad Yoran, CEO and Founder, Security Growth Partners
Elad Yoran is the CEO and founder of Security Growth Partners, a private equity fund focused on investments in homeland security solutions. Prior to founding SGP, Mr. Yoran co-founded, managed, and led Riptech, Inc. (Riptech), a leading managed security services provider. Ernst & Young recognized Mr. Yoran for his success with the “Entrepreneur of the Year” award in 2001. Symantec Corporation (NASDAQ: "SYMC") acquired Riptech for $145 million in 2002, ranking in the top 2% in transaction value of all technology merger and acquisition transactions of that year. From 2002 to 2003, Mr. Yoran served as Vice President, Global Business Development at Symantec. Prior to Riptech, Mr. Yoran served as Vice President at Broadview International, an investment bank that focuses on mergers and acquisitions in the technology industry. Mr. Yoran is a MBA graduate of the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and holds a BS with honors from the United States Military Academy at West Point.
Howard Smith, Managing Director, SeventySix Capital (ETF Venture Funds)
Howard W. Smith leads business development for the fund. He is responsible for generating and evaluating new investment opportunities and he supports the fund’s investment portfolio companies. His activities include proactive outbound deal prospecting and research. He also actively develops relationships with entrepreneurs, service providers and business leaders across the country.
Howard brings over 15 years of business development, financial and consulting experience. Prior to joining ETF, Howard was a Senior Associate at PricewaterhouseCoopers and IBM’s (NYSE: IBM) Business Consulting Services. Howard consulted for many Fortune 500 companies and Universities such as: AT&T (NYSE: T), Johnson & Johnson (NYSE: JNJ), HJ Heinz (NYSE: HNJ), Rohm & Hass (NYSE: ROH) and the University of Pennsylvania Health Systems. In addition to consulting for PWC and IBM, Howard also served as the Global Knowledge Manager of the Financial Management Solution Division where he was responsible for the tacit and explicit knowledge of the firm.
Howard earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Arts & Sciences, from Syracuse University, and an MBA from Nova-Southeastern University. He lives in the Philadelphia suburbs with his wife and two children.
Michael Majors, Investment Partner, Siemens Venture Capital
Mike Majors is an Investment Partner based in Boston, MA. He focuses on investments in the industrial space, including industrial automation, drive technologies, building technologies, lighting and mobility.
Before joining Siemens Venture Capital, Mike was the CFO at Indeed.com, a search engine for jobs, and a Venture Partner at StarVest Partners, a New York City based venture capital firm focusing on SaaS investments. Prior to that, Mike was the CFO at Visible World, a provider of targeted television advertising solutions backed by Comcast, Time Warner, and WPP.
While a Vice President at BEV Capital, a consumer, digital media, and software focused venture capital fund, Mike led investments in and worked with companies including Retail Solutions (acquired by VeriSign), MaxPreps (acquired by CBS), and ProfitLogic (acquired by Oracle). Earlier in his career, Mike was a consultant with the Boston Consulting Group.
Mike received a PhD in control systems from Cambridge University and a BSE in mechanical and aerospace engineering from Princeton University.
John Adler, General Partner, Silver Creek Ventures
Mr. Adler joined Silver Creek Ventures as a General Partner in 2007. His areas of expertise include data and voice communications, semiconductors, and wireless applications. Mr. Adler has also served as a board member of the Texas Venture Capital Association since its inception in 2004.
Prior to joining Silver Creek, Mr. Adler served as a Partner with InterWest Partners since 2001, a leading diversified venture capital firm in information technology and life sciences. Representative investments include Covaro (acquired by Adva Optical), kajeet, Nuventix, Venturi Wireless and VizionWare.
Prior to InterWest Partners, Mr. Adler developed 17 years of operating experience in product management and engineering from Rockwell International, Alcatel, Monterey Networks and Cisco Systems. Mr. Adler received a BSEE and MBA from Southern Methodist University and has authored or co-authored four US patents.
Jeanne Sullivan, Partner, StarVest Partners
Jeanne M. Sullivan has been investing in and growing tech companies since 1990! She has 17 years of private equity experience and has spent 27 years in the technology sector encompassing both extensive operating and investing experience with technology companies. Jeanne is a co-founder and General Partner of StarVest Partners, L.P. a New York City based venture capital firm with over $300 million under management. The firm invests in technology-enabled business services companies. As a General Partner of StarVest Partners and previously with Olivetti Ventures, Ms. Sullivan has served on the boards of many technology company boards.
Ms. Sullivan has extensive experience creating 'go to market' plans for expansion stage companies. Her expertise also includes strategy, a keen understanding of the technology landscape and industry trends.
Ms. Sullivan is a sought-after industry speaker on the subject of investing in and building technology companies and serves as an adjunct professor of marketing at the graduate level. Her credentials also include: lousy golfer, Yankee baseball and sports addict, and oldest of eight kids where she learned the most about managing people and getting results.
"I see CEO's get their PhDs in best practices for how-to-get-funded techniques. This is accomplished through FundingPost's well orchestrated and accomplished conferences – great for learning from and networking with the money sources."
- Jeanne M. Sullivan, StarVest Partners
Brian Model, Managing Director, NY, Stonehenge Growth Capital
Mr. Model is responsible for Stonehenge Capital's Early Stage and Start-Up investment activities in New York State. Stonehenge currently has 10 active Early Stage and Start-Up portfolio companies in New York. He has been with the firm since 2001. Mr. Model currently serves on the Board of Directors of Lumetrics, PixFusion, Lorica Solutions, Knovel (observer), Medidata Solutions (observer) and iCardiac Technologies (observer).
Prior to joining Stonehenge, Mr. Model spent 12 years in the retail industry as Founder of a men’s sportswear e-tailer, Vice President and Merchandise Manager of an upscale multi-store apparel retailer in New Jersey and as a graduate of the Macy's Executive Training Program in San Francisco. Mr. Model received his undergraduate degree in Economics from Duke University. He has an MBA with Honors from Columbia Business School.
Samuel Wu, MD, PhD, Principal, SV Life Sciences
Dr Samuel Wu joined SVLS in 2002 and is focused on biotech and medical device investments. He is on the board of Halscion and iTherapeutix, and an active board observer at Alba Therapeutics and Logical Therapeutics.
Prior to joining SVLS, Samuel was an Engagement Manager with McKinsey and Company's Pharmaceuticals and Medical Products practice, where he led teams of consultants serving clients on M&A, portfolio analysis and other strategic issues.
Samuel earned an MD and a PhD in Biochemistry from Stanford University and completed his internship in Internal Medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles. He holds an AB in Biochemistry from Harvard College.
Gil Hermon, Managing Director, The Florida Value Fund
Between 1996 and 1998, Mr. Hermon was a Senior Associate with the investment banking
department of Bear, Stearns & Co. in New York where he advised Fortune 500 clients in a broad range of industries. Between 1998 and 2001, Mr. Hermon was a partner with the
investment partnership Shaykin & Co. in New York. Between 2001 and 2003, Mr. Hermon
served as partner at the Challenge Funds which manage over $250 million of capital and
have investments in over eighty portfolio companies. Mr. Hermon earned a bachelor’s degree in Economics and Labor Relations from Tel-Aviv University in 1993 and an MBA with a
concentration in finance from Boston University in 1996.
Steve Goldberg, Ph.D., Partner, Venrock
Steve Goldberg joined Venrock in 2009 after having been CEO of several early stage companies including DataRunway, Vidient, Arcwave, and CoWave Networks. He was Vice President of Research and Development at Nokia Internet Communications and VP and GM of the Wireless Communications Division at Cylink Corporation. Steve has also held senior management and engineering positions at Trimble Navigation and Hewlett Packard. Additionally, Steve enjoys teaching and public speaking, and has delivered a number of academic and industrial courses in the areas of wireless, telecom, and signal processing.
Jung Yun, President and CEO, Yun Capital
Jung Yun has more than fifteen years experience in the areas of finance, banking, operations, sales, consulting, and as an entrepreneur. She is currently the Managing Director for Yun Capital. She also serves as a Fund Manager and Partner of Global Media Fund with over $400M under assets. In addition, Ms. Yun is a partner of Boston First Capital, a boutique Investment Bank focused in International Transactions in such countries as Dubai, Abu Dhabi, China, Montenegro, Kingdom of Tonga, and the Bahamas.
Ms. Yun's experience has been in the capacity of both Fund Manager and Investment Banker. She has worked with many public/private companies in transactions ranging from $1M to $8B. She has completed over $300M in mergers and acquisitions, and serves as both designer and architect in these ventures. She also delivers financial strategy, business consulting, operations, implementations and strategic alliance expertise to the companies she invests in. In addition, her career has included setting up and managing Boards of Directors and Advisory Boards. She has served as President and Chairman of Global Life Line, a telecommunications company and President of Mindography Inc, an eduportal for the education market.
Ms. Yun's accomplishments on the operational side include building direct sales channels, managing a team of 300, business development, Joint Ventures and mergers & acquisitions. The list of companies to which she has contributed to their growth include: JPMorgan, Reed Elsevier, The Village Companies and many others. She graduated with honors from the University of Tennessee and is a proud member of the MENSA organization.
"I thought the event was excellent as always. Thank you for including me in your wonderful event. I thought companies really benefited. I am following up with 3 companies from the event and one that we recommended for the event :)"
- Jung Yun, Yun Capital
Rob Brown, Chief Operations Officer, ZINO Society
Rob Brown comes to ZINO Society with a unique perspective as both an entrepreneur and an investor. He is the founder and former CEO of Healionics. Prior to Healionics, he was spent over 15 years in technology development. The last 10 were spent at Microsoft, in the areas of, financial analysis, strategy development and product development bringing nine products to market.. Previously, he led broker/dealer relations for American Funds. Mr. Brown holds an MBA from the University of Washington.