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Review Committee

David Artz
Polina Bakhteiarov
Faz Bashi
Everett Bellamy
Leah Belsky
Floortje Blindenbach-Driessen, PhD
Earl “Eb” Bright
Michael Chodos
Tony Cord
Nancy Corsiglia
Allan Daisley
Michael Dreben
Stuart Eckmann
Gwen Edwards
Simon Fisher
Monique Gaw
Richard Greene
Erin Horne McKinney
Sanjay Khurana
Bill Kramer
Phyllis Kristal
Dan Kunitz
Brad Larschan
Lex McCusker
Amy Millman
Manu Nair
Tiffany Norwood
Philip Reeves
Patrick Rivelli
Robert Ryan
Amita Shukla
Karen Stultz
Ira Wallace

David Artz

David Artz, MD, has been Medical Director of Information Systems at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York, NY, since 2003. In this role he has been a key member of the management team responsible for IT strategy for both clinical and research environments, including vendor selection and contract negotiation, system implementation, and security/privacy policy creation. These projects have included the ongoing implementation of the software currently known as Allscripts Enterprise EHR. He has been primary sponsor of internally developed applications, including the Patient Portal and many electronic record enhancements. One of his major areas of focus has been the development of the institution’s data warehouse, including a web-based self-service query tool and the incorporation of discrete data from large-scale molecular testing into this warehouse. Prior to joining Sloan Kettering, David was Medical Director of Information Services at Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago, where he implemented the Cerner inpatient and Epic outpatient EHRs. He has an MBA from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management and recently returned to Kellogg to create and teach the school’s Health IT course. He has an MD from West Virginia University and an appointment as Associate Professor of Clinical Medicine and Public Health at Weill Cornell Medical College. David is a practicing internist at Sloan Kettering with a weekly clinic.

Polina Bakhteiarov

As part of the mayor’s economic development team for the District of Columbia, Polina Bakhteiarov leads “Great Streets,” DC’s commercial revitalization initiative to transform emerging corridors into thriving and inviting neighborhood centers. Polina began her career with DC Government as a Capital City Fellow, working on a broad portfolio of projects, including the mayor’s 20-year sustainability strategy (Sustainable DC), performance management for the public safety domain, real estate development, business attraction and retention, affordable housing analysis, agency operations, and data analytics.

Polina earned Bachelor of Science degrees in urban planning and civil engineering, as well as a master’s degree in city planning, from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. She has a deep interest in STEM inclusion and works with minority technical organizations, such as the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE) and the National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE), to fortify the education-to-career pipeline for minority STEM talent and to increase access to entrepreneurship resources.

Faz Bashi

Faz Bashi, MD, has a research background in immunology and virology from UCSF. He is on the board of directors at Life Science Angels (LSA) and an active member of the Medical Device Screening Committee, as well as the Biotechnology & Pharmaceutical Screening Committee. He is the chair of the Angel Capital Association’s Life Sciences Syndication group. He is a founding member and served two years on the board of directors of HealthTech Capital and is a member of the Berkeley Angel Network. He works as a consultant to Coleman Associates (www.patientvisitredesign.com) as a Deep Dive expert, and he coaches on workflow process improvement for public health clinics and safety net organizations across the US. He is passionate about novel technologies that improve the coordination and delivery of patient care through intelligent information brokering that enables true clinical collaboration, and is a member of the advisory board of Tiatros (www.tiatros.com). He has worked at San Mateo Medical Center to develop and implement special clinical projects to help the underserved, including TeleDermatology, Diabetic Retinopathy Screening, and advancements in electronic medical records. He is an external advisory board member of UCSF’s Clinical and Translational Science Institute and a mentor to the UCSF Lean Launchpad. Faz is an alumni member of the board of directors of a nonprofit foundation called Vascular Cures (www.vascularcures.org), teaches anatomy and physiology at California Institute for Integral Studies, teaches motivated middle school kids from underserved East Palo Alto communities at an amazing program called Peninsula Bridge (www.peninsulabridge.org), and recently completed several triathlons with Team-In-Training (www.teamintraining.org) to raise funds for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. He is also very active with Compass Group on Autism, a unique collaboration of families, scientists, and motivated individuals working to “unlock” the mysteries of autism through the power of data.

Everett Bellamy

For 30 years, Everett Bellamy served as an assistant dean at Georgetown Law, where he is currently an adjunct professor of law. During his tenure as a dean and professor, Everett has advised thousands of students and taught hundreds more. Since 1990, he has been teaching a small-business law and entrepreneurship course at Georgetown Law. In 1998, he taught a course in international business regulation at the European University Institute in Florence, Italy. He has advised small business owners and entrepreneurs for over 25 years. He has been involved with several startup companies as a founder and member. In 2009 and 2011, he attended the Northwestern University School of Law Searle Center on Law, Regulation, and Economic Growth program.

Dean Bellamy has been a guest lecturer at Howard University Small Business Development Center, Babson College (Massachusetts) School of Entrepreneurship, and the University of Maryland’s Hinman CEOs Program in Entrepreneurship Education. Currently, he is a member of the American Bar Association Section of Business Law and the BusinessWeek Alliance Advisory Board. For 10 years, he served as a member of the Board of Governors of the National Bar Association (NBA), and for 12 years, he was co-chair of the NBA Law Professors Division. In 2004, he received the NBA’s Presidential Award for his “exceptional commitment to legal education.”

Leah Belsky

Leah Belsky is the Senior Vice President of Operations and former Vice President of Strategy and Assoc. General Counsel at Kaltura, a “TechCrunch Top 40” and Intel Capital-funded company launching the world’s first open source media platform. Leah currently leads Kaltura’s 120-person operations team. She drives product and business strategy, interfacing with Fortune 100 companies such as Adobe, Bank of America, and Pearson as well as leading institutions such as NYU, MIT, and 2Tor, to define the future of education and media on the web. She founded Kaltura’s Education business, which is now the leading provider of multimedia solutions in higher education, and launched Kaltura while living in Europe in London and working as a part of the UK government’s “Tech City” startup initiatives. She was also a member of President Obama’s Technology Policy Committee and an early advisor to Startl, an edtech incubator and accelerator in New York City.

Leah began her career in international development and science policy at the World Bank and National Institutes of Health. She received the bank’s “Innovation Fund Award” and led public-private development and democratization projects in Asia, Latin America, and Africa.

Leah is a graduate of Yale Law School and Brown University. At Yale she was a Knight Law and Media Fellow. She also studied innovation, community design, and open systems with Yochai Benkler at Harvard’s Berkman Center for Internet & Society.

Leah’s work has been published in leading academic journals, and she has presented around the world. She remains a fellow at Yale, a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, and a Pipeline Angels 2012 Fellow. She is also on the Board of Public Knowledge, a DC-based nonprofit dedicated to freedom of information on the web.

Dr. Floortje Blindenbach-Driessen

Floortje is the founder and director of Organizing4Innovation LLC, an innovation management consultancy for professional service organizations.

Floortje championed many innovation projects while working for the Fluor Corporation and for Children’s National Medical Center. She coached many professionals in their innovation endeavors in engineering firms such as Tauw and Tebodin in the Netherlands; consultancies such as Deloitte Belgium and IG&H in the Netherlands; law firms such as Loyens and Loeff; research centers such as Barco and NXP in Belgium; and medical centers such as Children’s National Medical Center in Washington, DC. As business school faculty, she taught and developed courses related to innovation management and technology strategy. Her research focuses on the innovation challenges and opportunities of professional service organizations. Her work has appeared in academic journals such as Research Policy and the Journal of Product Innovation Management.

Earl “Eb” Bright

Eb joined the ExploraMed Development company creator/incubator in December 2005. He has over 20 years of experience as a business advisor and patent attorney, including serving on the executive management teams of five startup companies. Previously, Eb was Director of Intellectual Property West Coast Operations at Guidant Corporation where he directed a nine-member team involved in litigation and the strategic development of over 1,300 patent and trademark applications related to the Vascular Intervention, Cardiac Surgery, and Endovascular Solutions divisions; he also handled legal issues for Guidant Japan and the Compass Group, the unit responsible for Guidant’s venture capital and merger and acquisition activities. Eb holds MBAs from Columbia University and University of California, Berkeley, and a Juris Doctorate and a BS in mechanical engineering from the University of Oklahoma. He has earned the Certified Licensing Professional (CLP) designation from the Licensing Executives Society, US and Canada.

Michael Chodos

Michael Chodos is the senior advisor to the National Advisory Board on Social Impact Investing. The board is the US arm of the Global Task Force on Impact Investing, born out of the G8 Meeting in 2013. The board engages with policy leaders, social enterprises, foundations, corporate leaders, and the investment community to foster global and US opportunities to expand opportunities for investment with social purpose. The board recently issued a comprehensive report (“Private Capital, Public Good”) setting forth its policy recommendations and a roadmap for policymaker action. Michael is also senior advisor to the Georgetown Global Social Enterprise Initiative at the McDonough School of Business.

In addition, Michael is a Senior Fellow at Encore.org, working to develop social innovation and entrepreneurship strategy and engagement as well as policies and strategic partnerships supporting sustainability of the “encore” social enterprise. Michael is also principal of Monolith Strategic, which supports and accelerates startups in the media and technology sectors in market analysis, product focus and strategic partnerships.

Previously, Michael served as the associate administrator for the Office of Entrepreneurial Development in the US Small Business Administration, where he was responsible for overseeing the agency’s nationwide counseling and training resources and programs for America’s entrepreneurs, as well as the agency’s Regional Innovation Clusters program. The agency counsels and trains over a million small businesses a year, helping provide a pipeline to billions of dollars in capital and helping start tens of thousands of job-creating new businesses each year. Michael also served as the Small Business Administration’s Deputy General Counsel. Before joining the agency, Michael was the principal of a law practice that represented a diverse range of small-business entrepreneurs, private equity investors, technology developers, and content creators.

Tony Cord

Tony Cord is a native Washingtonian and trusted strategy, partnership/alliance builder and connector. As Regional Managing Partner at Tatum, a C-Suite solutions provider, he serves as an advocate for strategic and corporate investors, PE and lending professionals, and enterprise leaders seeking to maximize value and minimize risk on their critical transactions.

Tony enjoys working with growth-and innovation-minded startups, expansion-stage private corporations, public companies, government agencies, and sponsors, with a current focus on healthcare, education, and government contracting. He is a champion of inclusion and works to ensure that underrepresented groups are connected to economic development opportunities.

A widely respected innovator, author, and thought leader, Tony co-founded and launched a CBE-designated firm addressing the technology workforce development needs of DC’s high-potential underemployed and unemployed, returning vets, seniors and former inmates. He served as co-chairman of DC Innovates, which managed DC’s first-ever Digital DC Tech Fund, and is a former trustee of the Federal City Council of Washington, DC. Tony is an active angel and seed-stage investor and an advisory board member of multiple companies.

Nancy Corsiglia

Nancy Corsiglia is Co-Founder and Managing Partner of the Devonshire Advisory Group, a provider of interim executive services and strategic, financial and risk management solutions to start-ups and institutions in transition.  Previously, Nancy co-led the successful business start-up and 20-year growth of the NYSE listed Federal Agricultural Mortgage Corporation, where she held several executive positions, including EVP and CFO, and built the company into a diversified financial guarantor.  She had prior roles in capital markets, corporate finance and strategic business development at Paine Webber and General Motors Corporation.

Nancy is a member of the Board of Directors, Chair of the Governance and Nominating Committee and a member of the Audit Committee of the Private National Mortgage Acceptance Company Mortgage Opportunity Funds, an SEC registered investment fund complex that invests in distressed mortgage loans.  She is also a member of the Advisory Board of Apprendis, LLC, an educational technology start-up.  In addition, she is a member of the Board of Directors and President of the Dartmouth Entrepreneurial Network of Washington, DC and serves as a mentor with the Georgetown University Entrepreneurship Initiative and with the Accelerate DC venture mentoring service of the Washington, DC Economic Partnership.  Nancy has an AB in Economics from Smith College and an MBA in Management and Finance from the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth.

Allan Daisley

Allan Daisley is the director of entrepreneurship and sustainability at Memphis Bioworks Foundation. In this role, he manages entrepreneurship and business incubation programs and helps grow and support the entrepreneurship ecosystem in the Memphis area. He is the program director of the ZeroTo510 Medical Device Accelerator, an innovative, first-of-its-kind entrepreneurship program that helps entrepreneurs launch new medical device companies, navigate the startup process, and deliver their products to market. ZeroTo510 uses a methodology that combines an intensive mentorship-driven, cohort-based program with a seed investment in each company.

Allan previously worked as an economic development consultant and managed a business incubator program focused on leveraging entrepreneurship and technology as key drivers of sustainable economic development. He also has spent time in senior strategy and marketing roles at IBM, as a consultant at Accenture, and as an entrepreneur in two startup ventures. Allan has an MBA from Duke University and a Bachelor of Science in computer engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology.

Michael Dreben

Michael Dreben is an innovative, results-driven entrepreneurial executive with extensive experience in venture capital, private equity, business development, capital markets and financial services. Michael has been involved with early and growth stage companies in all aspects of their business activities.

Most recently, Mr. Dreben was a co-founder of Vendorlink.ca, a venture capital backed SaaS company, which was acquired by IntelliCentrics, Inc. in 2014. Currently, Michael serves as Vice President of Business Development for IntelliCentrics, Inc. He is at ease negotiating financings, M&A transactions, strategic alliances and enterprise contracts.

Mr. Dreben has been involved with companies that have been sold to NASDAQ and NYSE listed companies, and have completed IPOs. Earlier in his career, Michael worked as a floor trader for Goldman Sachs in New York City.

Stuart Eckmann

Stuart Eckmann lives in Northern California and is a member of Life Science Angels and Golden Seeds. He is an entrepreneur and has been active in pharma, imaging, device, and veterinary markets. He has been editor of a publication on cost containment and cost-benefit analysis in health care delivery. Stuart was treasurer and a chair of the grants committee of a foundation involved in life science funding to universities throughout the country. Additionally, Stuart has been principal investigator and collaborator on projects involving development of a multigenerational, multinational DNA bank and a translational medicine model of a neurodegenerative orphan disease. Currently, Stuart is involved in clinical trials for a multicenter, longitudinal study.

Gwen Edwards

Gwen Edwards brings over 30 years of experience building products, services, and profitable business units in high- technology sectors. From her role at Stanford Research Institute to Fortune 50 executive (SBC, Nortel Networks, Bell Canada) to venture capital-backed technology startup CEO and advisor, she combines the knowledge of successful brands, experience with scale, and the skills of managing innovation. Since 2001, Gwen has been working as an independent advisor on emerging growth initiatives bridging the interests of Fortune 500 and early-stage companies – identifying key milestones to enhance value, developing target market strategies, cultivating customer input, and providing strategic oversight to the execution of key deliverables. Gwen is known for her customer advocacy efforts – whether to obtain input early in the technology development process, to lead stellar sales efforts, or to build the strong links between stakeholders and strategic initiatives.

Prior to joining Silicon Valley’s entrepreneurial ranks in 2000, Gwen was president of Pacific Bell Network Integration and Business Internet-Services, delivering enterprise-wide customer networks, with a focus on Internet and electronic commerce-based solutions. She also established – and grew to a $200M business- a vertical market group for Pacific Bell focused on the healthcare and biotech markets.

Gwen’s early career affinity for innovation at SRI caused her to pursue a complementary background in business, recognizing her passion for commercializing innovation and going beyond applied research. She joined Bell Canada in Montreal for international experience and soon was responsible for the development and launch of a major content infrastructure project nationally and internationally (iNet). She returned to the United States with Nortel Networks and became vice president of sales for its largest unit. She has led business development and sales efforts for major firms and has experience that includes marketing, sales, general management, and entrepreneurial leadership, basic research, and product development.

In addition to independent consulting, Gwen co-leads Golden Seeds’ San Francisco and Silicon Valley angel investment network, serves in an executive capacity on the board of the National Health Foundation, and leads a consumer technology advisory board that she developed for a major California Utility. She is passionate about issues of gender and diversity, has been an advisor to Astia for over a decade, and consistently has been a trailblazer for other women throughout her career.

Simon Fisher

Simon Fisher has worked in high-technology industries for over 20 years, spanning R&D, marketing, technology strategy, and, since 1999, technology and patent licensing. Since 2007 he has advised a number of clients on transactions in high-technology industries.

Prior to 2007, Simon worked for the international technology transfer firm BTG plc on a number of development and licensing programs, generating substantial revenues on behalf of individual inventors, research institutes, and corporate clients. Simon is currently executive vice president of technologies at Bastille LLC, and a co-director of Sasial Vehicle Technologies, Ltd., and he provides consulting support via his partnership in Xempa LLP.

Monique Gaw

Monique Gaw has 25 year of domestic and international experience [middle market and Fortune 500 companies] in general management, finance, corporate development, capital markets, regulations. She has an excitement for your business and a value creation mindset to deliver results through focus on execution and operational efficiency and effectiveness.

Monique spearheaded development and implementation of growth strategies and processes for a startup company, and a $25MM niche commodity trading desk in Geneva Switzerland. In addition, she consults business and provides strategic counseling and planning, business impact and continuity, and market entry strategies. Monique has a BS from Boston University, and is a graduate of the Execute Management Program at the Wharton School.

Richard Greene

Throughout his professional career and currently, Richard Greene, CPA continues to render his Business Advisory/Coaching, and Equity and Debt Venture Funding services to numerous clients in a broad range of industries, including by way of example, the healthcare, financial, technology, banking, information, retail, wholesale, real estate, energy, construction, entertainment, sports, services and international business sectors. He is an Advisor and Former President of the DC Metro Chapter of Keiretsu Forum, the largest community of Accredited Investors in the world.

Internationally, Richard works with such companies as those in healthcare, medical, scientific, manufacturing, agricultural, technology, and homeland security.

He continues to be active in strategic planning and implementation, due diligence, management, systems and procedures, mergers and acquisitions, cause related marketing, and entrepreneurial endeavors. Richard helps companies and non-profits to “have their income equal more sm”, which includes finding ways to increase revenue and reduce expenses without reducing the quality of the products and services being acquired, and employing tax incentives and tax credits.

Richard has been an accountant, auditor, business advisor+coach+facilitator, and a business manager for entertainers, executives, and high net worth individuals. He has been an active speaker and writer for, and a member of, numerous professional and business organizations. He was a founder of a regional CPA and Business Advisory firm which grew to over 100 people during his tenure, and of which he was managing partner for five years. He also worked on special projects, as a Business Advisor with a national CPA and Business Advisory firm, for over six years.

Richard holds Bachelor and Masters Degrees from Benjamin Franklin University (George Washington University), where he graduated with honors. He and his wife, Miriam, have four children and twelve grandchildren.

Erin Horne McKinney

Passionate about entrepreneurship and emerging technology, Erin Horne McKinney currently serves as the mayor of Washington, DC’s Tech & Innovation Sector manager, representing technology firms, entrepreneurs, and organizations that want to locate or grow in the District of Columbia. Erin is responsible for the Office of the Deputy Mayor of Planning and Economic Development’s recent launch of “Digital DC” (digitaldc.co), a marketing and branding campaign and economic development initiative to promote Washington, DC, as the leading community in the innovation and high-tech economy.

Prior to joining DC government, Erin served in leadership roles with the National Association of Multicultural Digital Entrepreneurs (NAMDE), the National Diversity Council, and the Maynard Institute. Her tech policy work includes research positions with TechNet (the National Telecommunication and Information Administration within the US Department of Commerce) and the National Black Caucus of State Legislators. She completed her undergraduate and graduate studies in journalism and tech policy at Howard University in Washington, DC.

Sanjay Khurana

Sanjay Khurana is a high-impact innovator with a balance of entrepreneurial energy and business know-how having taken the reins in venture-backed startups, rapid-growth enterprises, and global Fortune 500 companies. His passion for consumer products & innovation has taken his journey through Mobile Communications, Mobile Advertising, Digital Media and Marketing, Mobile Payments, and now Consumer Health.

At AARP, Sanjay leads the Health Innovation efforts in market outreach and eco-system development with entrepreneurs, investors and industry thought leaders, in addressing the needs of the 50-plus.

Sanjay’s career has spanned high tech, mobile, and software ventures including Clearwire (acquired by Sprint), DBSD (acquired by Dish Networks), Nextel, Sprint-Nextel. Yondr (acquired by Green Mountain Digital), GoldSpot Media, Iridium, Ztango (acquired by Real Networks) and Nortel Networks.

When he is not working, he is traveling around the world on wildlife photography expeditions. Sanjay is a co-founder in a successful Wildlife safari company, rated one of the Best Travel Adventure companies by National Geographic.

Bill Kramer

Bill Kramer studies, and is active with, companies at the intersection of private-sector activities and low-income populations. His varied activities share one common concern: how to turn new knowledge into human benefit as quickly and efficiently as possible. He designed and led CASE: The Center for the Advancement of Sustainable Enterprise, Colorado State University, and was founder and CEO of Clean Engines International, developing and selling retrofit kits for dirty two-stroke engines. He is a principal author of The Next Four Billion: Market Size and Business Strategy at the Base of the Pyramid. He currently works as an advisor to multiple firms.

Phyllis Kristal

Phyllis Kristal is a Principal in the Washington, DC, office of Fish & Richardson P.C. Phyllis joined the firm in 1993. She has advised clients in all industry sectors on IP matters for more than 20 years, including patent prosecution, freedom to operate, patentability, validity, infringement, landscape, and due diligence studies. With a mechanical engineering background, Ms. Kristal has seen the entire range of IP issues a company of any size may encounter and has proven experience counseling startup companies on navigating the IP world.

Ms. Kristal previously worked at DEKA R&D on the development of mobility aids for the disabled and at Candela Laser Corporation on the design of laser catheters for angioplasty, biliary stones, eye surgery, and dermatology.

Dan Kunitz

Dan Kunitz is a media and technology executive and entrepreneur who has been involved in the creation and management of several successful web and media startups. He is currently a director of DC I-Corps, an NSF-funded program run by the University of Maryland, George Washington University, Virginia Tech, and Johns Hopkins University.

The program provides real-world, hands-on training to entrepreneurs and researchers to bring technology innovations to market. Dan also serves as chairman of Washington, DC Economic Partnership’s AccelerateDC program.

Brad Larschan

Brad Larschan has a unique blend of skills that make him a trusted IP advisor and business leader. An international lawyer by training, she has, since 1991, held a variety of dynamic business roles, ranging from CEO of IP-oriented companies to advising global investment firms on assessing and structuring IP investments. Brad and his team also have extensive experience in international patent monetization. He is currently the CEO of three companies that each have IP as a central component of their business: Bastille, LLC; Vehicle IP, LLC; and Sasial Vehicle Technologies, Ltd. Bastille is a world- class intellectual property development and commercialization company whose mission is to assist academic and research institutions to realize substantial value from their investment in invention and creativity. Through the Bastille Program, clients worldwide are able to assess and monetize patented technologies on a no-risk/revenue-sharing basis.
Brad’s distinguishing strength is that he brings a creative approach to structuring IP opportunities. He lives on a farm in northeast Shelby County, Tennessee, with his wife and twin daughters.

Lex McCusker

Leo “Lex” McCusker, PhD, is retired from the School of Technology Management at Stevens Institute of Technology in Hoboken, NJ, where he served as dean from 2006 through 2009. At Stevens Institute he taught and did research in tech-based entrepreneurship.

Before joining Stevens Institute, Lex worked for 23 years at AT&T and Bell Laboratories in the areas of software development, professional technology services, technology licensing, and intrapreneurship. He was CEO of the AT&T text-to-speech startup, Natural Voices™.

He is currently the president of the Dartmouth Entrepreneurial Network of DC, an angel investor, and an advisor to several startups.

He holds a doctorate in experimental psychology from The University of Texas at Austin and a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Dartmouth College.

Amy Millman

Amy Millman has established a successful career as an advocate working for and with business and government officials to develop and implement national business development and policy initiatives. In 2000, she co-founded nonprofit venture Springboard Enterprises, whose mission is to facilitate women entrepreneurs’ access to the equity markets. The organization hosts educational programs and forums to provide women entrepreneurs with access to investors and information about sources and uses of equity capital.

Previously, Amy served as the executive director of a federal government commission focused on developing policy and initiatives concerning women’s business ownership. Earlier in her career, she represented the interests of several corporate and industry groups before the legislative and executive branches of the federal government. Amy has served on the boards of many organizations, including her current service on the boards of JumpStartInc. and Enterprising Women magazine. She is a graduate of Carnegie Mellon University and holds a master’s degree from The George Washington University. She and her family reside in the Washington, DC area.

Manu Nair

Manu Nair is the Vice President of Technology Ventures for the Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation (OMRF) in Oklahoma City. He is in charge of developing/commercializing OMRF’s technologies, establishing strategic industry collaborations, and managing the innovation fund dedicated to such efforts. Manu started his career at OMRF in 2004 and was involved in OMRF’s intellectual property commercialization and startup company efforts. He later joined Mayo Clinic Ventures (MCV), which is the technology commercialization and investment arm of Mayo Clinic, where he initially served as a technology licensing manager and subsequently as senior licensing manager. At MCV, he managed a diverse portfolio of technologies and was in charge of its IP protection, development, and commercialization, including company formation and seed-capital investment. He also led MCV’s international collaboration and strategic business development initiatives. In addition, Mr. Nair serves as a business consultant for US and international entities, including Bastille LLC.

Manu received his MBA from Lamar University in Texas and an advanced degree in law from the University of New Hampshire School of Law, focusing on intellectual property, commerce and technology laws.

 

Tiffany Norwood

Tiffany Norwood is a successful serial entrepreneur, former investment banker, accomplished painter and a patented inventor. Ms. Norwood is one of the pioneers of digital satellite radio, as part of the original team of WorldSpace/XM Radio; as well as, an early collaborator in MPEG technology, later to be known as MP3 and MP4. Tiffany was an early player in the broadband industry as the Head of European Operations for Time Warner’s Road Runner; and, as a co-founder of Next Generation Broadband, a high tech company that created technology to enable self-install of high speed data and digital phone services. Since she was a kid, Tiffany would imagine, build and grow businesses-a passion that still claims her today.

Currently, Tiffany is the Founder and CEO of Tribetan, the Sorceress for eMortal, a new virtual reality e-sports gaming start-up and an advisor to Rothenberg Ventures. She is also an Entrepreneur-in-Residence at Georgetown University, a global thought leader and speaks around the world on the “ROI of Faith” and the universal application of entrepreneurial skills and mindsets to all sectors of society at venues including -Cornell University, the Italian Parliament, Global Entrepreneurship Week and others. Recently she was appointed a U.S. Speaker on Entrepreneurship for the State Department. As a social entrepreneur, she was a co-founder and corporate vice president of Ethiopia Healthcare Network (NetworkE), a non-profit that provided full-service healthcare to 4,000+ low-income women and children.

Ms. Norwood has an MBA from Harvard and a Bachelor’s in Economics with a concentration in statistics and electrical engineering from Cornell University. Tiffany has lived, worked and visited nearly 50 countries. Beyond travel, her other interests include enlightenment, the future, painting, spicy food, make my cake and second language acquisition.

Philip Reeves

Philip Reeves is the manager of Small Business Technology and Innovation for the DC Department of Small and Local Business Development, where he is responsible for helping DC-based companies engage in Federal R&D projects and supporting the DC technology ecosystem. He has co-authored successful small business innovation research (SBIR) and small business technology transfer (STTR) proposals as well as consulted for early-stage companies. Previously, Philip worked at a small government contractor doing corporate and business development. He began his career on Wall Street working in private equity.

Patrick Rivelli

Patrick Rivelli has been a life sciences entrepreneur and angel investor for over 23 years. He is currently co-founder and CEO of Sonogenix, Inc., a medical device company focusing on kidney disease. He is also head of the Life Sciences Track at MIT Angels, an angel investing group of MIT alums focusing on MIT-pedigreed startups with a deep science/technology foundation.

Patrick previously served as CEO of Bioabsorbable Therapeutics, Inc., a resobable coronary stent company acquired by Multi Cell Corporation, and as CEO of Smart Therapeutics, an intracranial stent company acquired by Boston Scientific. He holds or has held numerous board positions, including Chestnut Medical Technologies (acquired by Covidien), 6 Sensor Labs, SQZ Biotech, and Vascular FX (acquired by Johnson & Johnson). Rivelli holds a BA from Harvard University and an MS from MIT Sloan School of Management.

Robert Ryan

Robert Ryan is a graduate of New York University and has been a resident of the Washington metropolitan community since 1965.He is an executive who has been active in entrepreneurial ventures for over 40 years. Robert has created, financed, managed, and sold over a dozen companies during his career. The first company he created in 1970 grew from three employees to become the world leader in electronic mail, with offices in 19 countries. Concurrently, in 1980, he was the founding president of “The Source,” the direct predecessor of AOL, which he and his business partner sold to Reader’s Digest.

At this point in his career he became involved with George Mason University and was a founding member of the Century Club, a group of 100 successful entrepreneurs who donated $1 million to start a facility for entrepreneurship at GMU. He also took on the role of chairman of the Domestic Incubator for two years until the commercial world drew him back. Robert continued to design, build, manage, buy, and sell over a dozen creative and leading-edge technology companies throughout the world. Over the following decades Robert held a number of funding and C-level roles in companies, crossing many areas of technology. Additionally he has done corporate diversifications and turnarounds.

Robert is active in the Washington area in advisory roles to selected area startup companies. He is a member of The Leadership Board of Maryland, NSF- funded I-Corps, Accelerate DC, and a partner of the Keiretsu Forum Mid-Atlantic Region, the largest angel investor group worldwide. Robert’s newest venture, Innovation Center Development Company, LLC (ICDC), was created to design and create innovation centers for universities and colleges throughout the United States.

Amita Shukla

Amita Shukla is an innovator and entrepreneur focused on creating, developing, and scaling simple yet powerful ideas for human health, well-being, and potential. She is the founder and CEO of Vitamita and the author of Enduring Edge. Previously, she was a principal at New Enterprise Associates (NEA), one of the world’s largest and most active venture capital firms with close to $17 billion in committed capital, where she spent close to nine years evaluating medical innovations, investing in cutting-edge healthcare start-ups, and working closely with scientists, physicians, and entrepreneurs. Earlier, she was the vice president of AmiKa Corp., a biomedical technology company where she developed and commercialized novel research tools–for which she holds 10 issued patents–until its acquisition by Harvard Bioscience (Nasdaq: HBIO). Previously, she founded two startups and was a healthcare analyst at Merrill Lynch. She has written about innovation for publications such as the MIT Technology Review.

Amita regularly mentors startups, advises organizations, and speaks to audiences of innovators, entrepreneurs, and leaders in industry, academia, government, and the military. In 2015, she was appointed as a Mentor in Residence at Johns Hopkins University to help its researchers and physicians realize the potential of their groundbreaking discoveries. She has also served on the Johns Hopkins Medicine Alliance for Science and Technology Development since 2007. In 2010, she was Governor Martin O’Malley’s youngest appointee to the board of Maryland’s Technology Development Corporation (TEDCO), a national leader in seed/early-stage investing. In 2015, she was reappointed by Governor Larry Hogan. Amita also serves as a Life Science Council member for Springboard and as a founding board member of the Global Liver Institute, both driven by her passion for mentoring and supporting women entrepreneurs.

Amita holds a BA in biochemistry from Harvard, where she was a senior editor at the Harvard Crimson, and an MBA from Stanford, where she led a team that won the university-wide Stanford business plan competition for a novel cardiovascular device.

Karen Stultz

Karen Stultz is a senior operations executive with over 20 years of experience in the international software and wireless market. She has led the creation and growth of numerous startups and small businesses through financial, operations, and personnel management. In her current role Karen provides strategic and operations management advisory and consulting services to entrepreneurial ventures and small businesses. Karen holds an MBA from the Darden School at the University of Virginia and a BA from the University of Notre Dame.

Ira Wallace

Ira Wallace has spent the past 12 years creating and implementing strategies that allow companies to get optimum value from their innovations, ideas, and intellectual property. As the CEO of a venture-backed company and as a consultant, Ira has used market intelligence and intellectual property to build and protect a profitable market position. Whether the goal is an M&A transaction, a partnership, or sales growth, Ira has helped his clients with strategic plans and marketing plans that have allowed them to reach their business goals. As an investor, Ira serves as regional vice-president for Keiretsu Forum Mid-Atlantic and is on the steering committee of the Mid-Atlantic Bio Angels.
Ira graduated Cum Laude from the University of Pennsylvania. He holds an MD from the Medical College of Pennsylvania (now Drexel University School of Medicine). Ira completed his MBA at Columbia University and is a member of the Beta Gamma Sigma MBA honors society.