NUvention: Web + Media Advisory Board
Elisa AllFounder & President/CEO, 30Second Mobile, Chicago, IL
Elisa All is founder/CEO of 30Second Mobile, a women-focused media company creating authentic snackable content for consumers, and engaging branded content for corporate clients. Previously, All founded iParenting, a highly-regarded dotcom acquired by The Walt Disney Company in 2007. All earned her bachelor’s in communications from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and her master’s in journalism from Northwestern University. She was recently recognized by UW-Madison with its Entrepreneurial Achievement Award, and she serves on Northwestern University’s Council of 100, a mentoring organization made up of NU’s leading alumnae.
Adarsh J. AroraPHD ’78 (Computer Science)Founder, CEO & President, Lisle Technology Partners
Adarsh is a founder and CEO of Reputada and Lisle Technology Partners. He was a founder and CEO of Athena Security which was acquired by Solarwinds (NYSE:SWI) in August 2012. Prior to Athena, Adarsh has created, managed and nurtured multiple successful start-ups (Peritus Software Services and Vista Technologies) to maturity, including an IPO that created a $500 million market capitalization.
David BeazleyManaging Partner, Synergy: Capital, Advisory, Development, Chicago, IL
Mr. Beazley has worked with multiple private equity firms, operating and investing in the lower middle markets, early stage venture tech, energy and real estate. In addition to the consulting work, Synergy Financial has funded more than 50 transactions totaling more than $200M. Mr. Beazley has also personally participated in the formation, growth and mentoring of dozens of startups in his career, and has authored numerous business plans. For the past few years, Mr. Beazley has been immersed in early stage tech, first consulting for multiple niche social media tools, sites and networks, then helping to start an online social style site called INESQUE, set to launch in 2017.
Mr. Beazley has an undergraduate and a graduate degree from Northwestern University. Mr. Beazley played for the two-time Big Ten Championship Northwestern Wildcats Football Team and continues to stay active with the Northwestern Alumni Association.
Jeffrey BeirManaging Partner, seed2A
Jeffrey is currently the Managing Partner of seed2A, a product UX firm that helps early stage companies elevate their cloud and mobile products. He is a founding mentor and EiR at the Harvard iLab and speaks frequently on entrepreneurial topics. Jeffrey is also the Chairman of the National Center for Technology Literacy at the Museum of Science and is passionate about early engineering education. Jeffrey is the founder and CEO of RoadAhead, developers of a mobile app that helps you find the best exit ahead on the highway for all your travel needs.
Viresh BhatiaFounder, Installshield
Viresh Bhatia co-founded Installation Software Technologies, Inc. (doing business as InstallShield Software Corporation) in 1987 and served as its chief executive officer. Bhatia has received multiple industry awards including KPMG's "Illinois High Tech Award," Ernst & Young's "Software Entrepreneur of the Year Award" and a mention in Silicon India Magazine's "Top 100."
Bill BlissPartner Architect/Strategist & Partner Group Program Manager, Microsoft
Bill Bliss has extensive experience in developing new products for the web. He has been a part of three start-ups: Gomez, Inc. (now a division of Compuware), where he was VP of emerging technologies, Klir Technologies, where he was CTO, and now his own consulting company, Roadmap Integrity. Before pursuing his own business venture, Bliss was VP and GM of search and recommendations for Myspace, a division of Fox Entertainment and News Corporation. He earned a BS in computer science from Northwestern University.
Bill has spent over 16 years at Microsoft in a variety of senior technology and management roles.
Vlada BortnikFounder of www.getjoya.com and HappyBits Co
Vlada Bortnik is based in Palo Alto and is the co-founder of Joya, a mobile app that makes it easy to send any video to any device for free. She is also a co-founder of HappyBits Co. Vlada founded both of these with her husband. She is also a loving mother of two daughters.
Bracken P. DarrellCEO, Logitech
As president and chief executive officer of Logitech, Bracken P. Darrell is responsible for Logitech’s strategy for growth and profitability. Darrell joined Logitech as president in April 2012, and assumed the role of chief executive officer in January 2013. Darrell has more than 20 years of experience in business management and brand management in successful global consumer companies, including Whirlpool, Procter & Gamble, and General Electric. Bracken holds an MBA degree from Harvard Business School and a BA degree in English from Hendrix College in Arkansas.
Scott GerlachSenior Director of Product Management, GoDaddy
Scott Gerlach leads collaboration across design, engineering, and business disciplines. He has created empathetic new products at Disney, Microsoft, NBC, and elsewhere. Gerlach has driven startup efforts inside of major enterprises and also has led acquisitions on behalf of those companies. Most recently, Gerlach has co-founded the product development and consulting company Model 10 Electra. M10E is incubating new digital products while also assisting a select few VCs and major corporations with their own product portfolios.
Grant GochnauerCo-Founder & VP of Products, Vodori
Grant Gochnauer is a co-founder of a small Chicago based e-marketing consultancy, Vodori Inc., which helps companies shape and execute their online marketing strategy.
Gabe GreenbaumVenture Capitalist, Pritzker Group Venture Capital
Gabe Greenbaum joined Pritzker Group Venture Capital (f.k.a. New World Ventures) in 2012. During his venture capital career he has led or participated in numerous technology investments. Greenbaum assists management teams in building businesses, in raising capital, in helping to set strategy and to execute operationally, with a goal towards value creation.
Suneel GuptaHead of Mobile Business, One Medical Group
Suneel Gupta is currently the head of mobile business for One Medical Group. Before that, he was the CEO and founder of RISE Labs, which was acquired by One Medical Group in early 2016. Prior to these roles in healthcare, Gupta was the first vice president of product development for Groupon. He has also served as the director of product for Mozilla Labs and completed development projects at Tata Consultancy Services in Mumbai, India, as well as Accenture and Sony Pictures Entertainment. Gupta has a JD from Northwestern University’s School of Law and an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management. He graduated with distinction from the University of Michigan with a degree in information systems.
P.J. HasletonVice President of Information Technology at Andreessen Horowitz
P.J. Hasleton has spent 16+ years building companies across several industries and currently leads information technology operations at Andreessen Horowitz. Prior to Andreessen Horowitz, he held a number of technology leadership positions at both start-ups and with the Fortune 500 including, Ingenuity Systems, Kno, Hewlett Packard, and Opsware. He is an advisor to numerous companies, from start-ups to venture capital and law firms. Hasleton earned a BA in economics from Brigham Young University and an MS in communication systems from Northwestern University.
Timothy K. KrauskopfCEO, Arrington Performance IndustriesPrincipal, Round Lake Designs, LLC
Timothy K. Krauskopf is the CEO at Arrington Performance Industries, a premier manufacturer of specialty products that are used to get more out of Chrysler HEMI engines. He also operates his own technology and development consulting firm, Round Lake Designs. In transportation, he founded Freight Zone, a software/technology company and Round Lake Freight, a truckload freight company. He was previously VP in the Internet Software and Content Group at Motorola, Inc., held leadership positions at startup companies Parlano, Inc., and PCQuote.com, Inc., and Head of Information Services at The Field Museum in Chicago. Krauskopf was also a co-founder of Spyglass, Inc., which produced the forerunner to Microsoft’s Internet Explorer browser, Spyglass Mosaic.
Tom LaMantiaManaging Director, Magenium Solutions, LLC
Tom LaMantia is an investor and serial entrepreneur who has built and led multiple award winning National IT Firms. He has held various roles in his career from CEO, CIO, CTO and serves as an advisor to a number of fortune 500 leaders. LaMantia has extensive experience in various vertical markets with an emphasis on leveraging information technology within the financial drivers of a corporation. LaMantia is a member of The Society for Information Management and the Economic Club of Chicago.
Bret MaxwellManaging General Partner, MK Capital
Bret Maxwell is a managing general partner at MK Capital. He is also the managing general partner on three of the Productivity Funds totaling $200 million in committed capital. Maxwell has been a decision-making partner in six other fully invested funds, representing over $300 million in committed capital. Prior to founding MK Capital, he was the co-founder of First Analysis' venture capital practice in 1985.
Kristin McDonnellCOO, Rednote
Kristin McDonnell is a digital tech executive who works at the forefront of innovations in mobile, marketing, advertising, social media, and SaaS. Drawing upon her significant experience, she is the Chief Operating Officer of Rednote, the music messaging platform. As an entrepreneur, CEO, COO, CMO, and VP Content, Kristin has worked for and in partnership with a wide range of companies from Fortune 500 corporations to Silicon Valley start-ups including AT&T, Google, Apple, Electronic Arts, Verizon, NBCU, LimeLife, Mplayer, McKinsey, Aisle411, and TaskRabbit.
Jon McNeillPresident of Global Sales and Services, Tesla Motors
Jon McNeill's experience as an entrepreneur earned him a reputation as both an innovator and implementer. He is the 2012 Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year and in 2013 he was named "Most Admired CEO" in the midsize company category in Boston. Jon has founded eight companies, led teams creating more than 3,000 jobs and over a half-billion dollars of value for investors. He co-founded Enservio in 2006, a leading SaaS (software as a service) platform for insurers, employing over 400 people. McNeill is a graduate of Northwestern University. He is currently the President of Global Sales & Services at Tesla Motors.
David NguyenChief Technology Officer, Shmoop
David Nguyen has been Shmoop's chief technology officer since 2009. He received his MS and BS in computer engineering at Northwestern University. During his graduate program he was recognized as a member of the Walter P. Murphy Society and has published work in network intrusion detection. Previously he has held leadership and engineering positions at startups as well as larger scale companies including Peanut Labs (acquired by ResearchNow), Racevine, SanDisk, Sandia National Labs, and G.E. Healthcare.
Steve OlechowskiFounder of Blinkfire Analytics, Inc.
Steve Olechowski is a serial entrepreneur, active angel investor, and the founder of Blinkfire Analytics in Chicago. Prior to that, he was co-founder and COO of Feedburner. Steve negotiated its sale to Google, from negotiations to term sheet to close, and led its integration into the Google AdSense product line. He is currently working on Google social and monetization products. Olechowski has also worked as an investment principal, technical marketer, lead architect, and consultant in the online space. He earned his BS in computer science and economics from Northwestern University.
Hema PadhuFounder, Padhu Consulting
Hema Padhu has 18+ years of business and marketing experience in the high-tech industry. She has served in leadership position for startups like Snapfish (acquired by HP), ModCloth, HoneyBook and Inkling, where she’s helped hire, build, and lead teams that were responsible for revenue and growth. Today, she works with CEO’s and founders of early stage startups to help them build and establish a marketing function from ground up. She received her master's degree from Northwestern’s Medill IMC Program. Originally from India, she lives and works in San Francisco.
Bill PescatelloPartner, Lightbank Ventures
Bill Pescatello joined Lightbank as a principal in May 2011. While at Lightbank, Bill led the firm’s investments in Centzy, Locu (acquired by GoDaddy), Ovuline and Contently (co-lead), while also sitting on the boards of Udemy, Snapsheet, Fooda, Lifecrowd, and Whoshere. Pescatello joined the team from NBCUniversal, where he was a vice president and founding member of the Peacock Equity Fund, a $250m venture arm for NBCUniversal. While at Peacock Equity, he served as board representative at Greystripe, Ramp, and Vivox. Pescatello is a chartered financial analyst, holds a bachelor degree from Northwestern University and graduated with honors from The University of Chicago Booth School of Business.
Bob PlaschkePresident and CEO, Sonim Technologies, Inc.
Bob Plaschke currently serves as president & CEO of Sonim Technologies, pioneer of the world’s toughest GSM phone, the Xtreme Performance 1. One of the youngest CEOs in the mobile industry, Plaschke has led Sonim in this role for four years. Prior to this, he served as entrepreneur-in-residence at Sutter Hill Ventures. Before joining Sutter Hill, Plaschke was senior VP of worldwide client services at Infospace. He also served as CFO and VP for business development at Prio, a wireless and wireline promotion infrastructure company that was later acquired by Infospace. Plaschke was inducted into the Young Presidents' Organization in September 2008.
Nikhil SethiCo-Founder and CEO, Adaptly
Nikhil Sethi is the co-founder and chief executive officer of one of the most successful start-ups bred in the Farley Center's NUvention:Web course: Adaptly. His company got its start in 2010 when he met his business partner, Garrett Ullom, during the NUvention course. Sethi is growing as Adaptly's business leader and visionary, but he's not new to the start-up world. He previously co-founded Blurtt, a service that allows people to make, upload, and send real postcards to friends around the world. Sethi received his bachelor's degree in in electrical engineering from Northwestern University. While originally from the Bay Area, he currently resides in Manhattan, New York.
Rob ShurtleffManaging Director, Divergent Ventures
Rob Shurtleff is currently a Managing Partner at Divergent Ventures and sits on boards for multiple other companies. He has more than 20 years of software design, development, product marketing and management experience in high-profile, fast-growth technology companies. Shurtleff has also been active in the venture community as an angel investor since 1996. In 1999, he founded Sightline Partners, a strategic consulting group focused on early stage companies in conjunction with a number of Venture firms in Seattle. Shurtleff has a bachelor of arts degree in computer science from the University of California at Berkeley.
Ben SlivkaTrustee, Wissner-Slivka Foundation
Ben Slivka previously served as co-founder and chairman of DreamBox Learning (acquired by Charter Fund), a director of TeachFirst (teacher training), Vizrea (photo sharing) and GroundSpring.org (online donations), and on the Advisory Board of UIEvolution (acquired by Square Enix). Slivka spent 14 years at Microsoft, where he worked on OS/2, MS-DOS 6, Windows 95, the Java VM, and MSN. He started the Internet Explorer team in 1994 and led it through the release of IE version 3.0 in 1996.
Mary Lou SongBSJ '91, MACEO, FuelX
Mary Lou Song joined eBay in 1996 as the company’s third employee. She led the product management and community teams, helping grow the user base from 15,000 members to more than 20 million globally by 2002. Later she joined social networking startup Friendster. Her love of writing and the news prompted her to launch Tokoni, a story-sharing site, and Ongo, an aggregated news service with The New York Times, the Washington Post, and Gannett. Currently, she is CEO of FuelX. Mary Lou holds a BS in journalism from Medill at Northwestern University and a master's degree in media studies from Stanford University.
Tim StojkaCEO, Agentis Energy, Chicago, ILChairman, Fast Heat, Inc., Elmhurst, IL
Tim Stojka is currently CEO of Agentis Energy based in Chicago, IL. Agentis is an energy technology company delivering wireless energy management systems for commercial and industrial applications. In addition to his role at Agentis Energy, Stojka has served as the CEO of Fast Heat Inc, a designer and manufacturer of heating elements, sensors, and controls.
Steve SubarInterim CEO, Ubicquia
Steve Subar is currently the interim CEO of Ubicquia, which develops and markets a cloud-based Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) platform to deliver IIoT solutions. He is also the founder and former CEO of Open Kernel Labs, a leading provider of mobile virtualization applications and successful commercial spinout from National ICT Australia, which was acquired by General Dynamics. Subar is also a managing partner at z2m4, a management consulting company focused on delivering portfolio company performance for the managers of, and investors in, growth stage technology companies. Subar holds a bachelor of science from Miami University's School of Business with a concentration in computer and information technology.
Doug VanderMolenChief of Design and User Experience, Tanium
Doug VanderMolen is currently the Chief of Design and User Experience at Tanium, an endpoint security and systems management company. He was also the former chief UX architect of ClearStory Data. Before joining ClearStory Data, VanderMolen led the user experience for Google Analytics, Google AdWords, and other Google Ads products. Prior to Google, he was a key member of the team at MeasureMap, which was acquired by Google in 2006. He received his MD from the Institute of Design.
Hon WongCEO, Symphoniq
Hon Wong has founded three successful systems management companies including NetIQ, Ecosystems (CompuWare), and most recently Symphoniq. He currently serves as a member of the Board of Directors of Scansite, Shiaodu Cloud Technology, Ltd., and Nuage System.
Harold A. ZeitzPresident & COO, Wave Broadband
Harold A. Zeitz has served as president and COO of Wave Broadband since August, 2014. Prior to joining Wave Broadband, he served as senior vice president, Core and Specialty Markets at International Game Technology. Prior to that, he served as senior vice president and chief operating officer of the Games Division of RealNetworks, a digital media company, from June 2006 until July 2010. Zeitz was chief operating officer and Chief Marketing Officer of ShareBuilder Corporation from March 2002 until June 2006. Zeitz received his BA in economics from Northwestern University and an MBA from Stanford University.