45th Annual Venture Capital Institute

The Educational Foundation for Venture and Private Equity Professionals Worldwide

Faz Bashi, M.D.

Life Science Angels/Angel Capital Association


Faz K. Bashi, MD, has a research background in Immunology and Virology from UCSF. He is an active member of Life Science Angel's (LSA) in Silicon Valley, as well as Chair of the Angel Capital Association's (ACA) Life Sciences Syndication group. He was recently elected to serve as a Member of the ACA Board of Directors. He served as the 2015 Chair of LSA’s Digital Health & Sciences Screening Committee, 2013 Chair of LSA's Device Screening Committee, 2 years on the LSA Board, and is a member of the Biotech/Pharma Screening Committee.


He was a founding member of HealthTech Capital where he served on the Board of Directors for a 2-year term. He is a member of Berkeley Angel Network. He is active with UCSF’s Entrepreneurship Startup 101 and Lean Launchpad, UCSFs CTSI external advisory board, and Springboard Enterprises focused on women entrepreneurs. He 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 works as a consultant to Patient Visit Redesign on workflow process improvement for community health centers, 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 active on the Advisory Board of Tiatros-powered-by-Watson integrating physical and behavioral medicine.


He volunteers his time with Peninsula Bridge program to help the underserved kids of East Palo Alto get inspired about their futures via education. He is committed to helping find treatments for Tinnitus, Autism, Lupus, and Vascular diseases. He completed several triathlons with Team-In-Training to raise funds for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.



Nelson C. Chu

Kinetic Ventures


Mr. Chu is a Managing Director in his twentieth year at Kinetic Ventures.  He is a Partner in its most recent four funds.


Mr. Chu joined Kinetic Ventures in 1998, and brings extensive technology, engineering and consulting expertise to the Firm.  His investment activities focus on information and infrastructure technologies, enterprise and Internet software, database-related applications, and other emerging software and hardware technologies.  He has led a broad range of Kinetic investments including Cardlytics  (NASDAQ: CDLX), LogicBlox-Predictix (acquired by Infor), Tower Cloud (acquired by Communications Sales & Leasing, now Uniti Group; NASDAQ: UNIT), BroadWare (acquired by Cisco; NASDAQ: CSCO), VerticalOne (acquired by SONE; NASDAQ: SONE), FoodBuy (acquired by Compass Group; LSE: CPG.L), Instant Financial, Navistone, OPTii Solutions, Kobiton, and ProctorFree.


Prior to joining Kinetic, Mr. Chu was a management consultant with McKinsey & Company in Atlanta, where he served as an advisor on strategic and operational issues for various computer, telecom, transportation and manufacturing industry clients. Previously, he was a Development Manager with Oracle Corporation, where he led the design, development, and support of products within the Oracle Applications suite of financial products.


Mr. Chu received his BS in Electrical Engineering (summa cum laude) from Virginia Tech University, his MS in Electrical Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and his MBA with distinction from Harvard Business School.



T. (Teo) Forcht Dagi, M.D.

Apta Biosciences/Anglo Scientific


T. Fortch (Teo) DAGI MD, DMedSc, MPH, MTS has held leading positions across academia, clinical medicine, biopharma and venture capital. He has been a successful venture capitalist, investing £17m in 11 early-stage companies focused on healthcare and the life sciences, with the fund yielding more than a 300x increase in value. Four of these companies returned over $6 billion in value as public companies.


A neurosurgeon, Dr. Dagi holds academic appointments at Harvard Medical School and Queen’s University Belfast and taught at the Harvard-MIT Program in Health Sciences and Technology. He has chaired the Scientific Advisory Boards for Dupont, Lundbeck and the Royal Bank of Canada, and held numerous directorships of companies throughout the healthcare space. Dr. Dagi was responsible for planning the surgical logistics for the first Gulf War, and has also advised US government agencies including the NIH, NIAID and FDA, and various sovereign wealth funds and European governments.


Prior to joining Apta, Dr. Dagi was an Advisor to Broadview Ventures, and Distinguished Scholar and Professor at the School of Medicine at Queen’s University Belfast. He holds faculty appointments at Harvard Medical School, where he is a member of the Academy, and at MIT. He is a graduate of the Johns Hopkins Schools of Medicine and of Public Health, completed a neurosurgical residency at the Massachusetts General Hospital, and held the Joseph P. Kennedy Jr. and the Neuroresearch Foundation Fellowships at Harvard University.


Dr. Dagi has deep interests in medical innovation and in translational surgery. His work has focused in the areas of cerebrovascular disease and stroke, neural salvage and rehabilitation, head injury and functional neurosurgery. He is credited with developing the first cerebellar stimulating systems for intractable epilepsy and early artificial-intelligence-based decision support systems for neurosurgery. He sat on the FDA’s neurological advisory panel. He is an editor of Neurosurgery, an Overseer of the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, and a member of the Scientific Advisory Boards of the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center and Innovacorp, the Science and Technology Advisory Council for the Province of Nova Scotia.  Dr. Dagi has also successfully managed venture capital funds investing in early stage biomedical companies. He has taught at Harvard Business School and Wharton, is active in the National Life Sciences Association and serves on the faculty of the Venture Capital Institute. He was a Director of the Georgia Biomedical Partnership and a Founding Director at the Southeast Life Sciences Investor Association.  Among other honors, Dr. Dagi was awarded a personal US Humanitarian Service Medal. In 2012 he was the Dixon Medalist of the Ulster Medical Society and in 2013 he received ad hominem Fellowship from the Royal College of Surgeons in Edinburgh.



Clare Fairfield, VCI Chairman

Concerto Advisors


Clare J. Fairfield has over 25 years of entrepreneurial management and business development experience, including founding and managing businesses, venture capital investing, designing and delivering entrepreneurial and venture capital educational programs and providing legal advice to start-up and existing companies.  Mr. Fairfield has been involved with the start-up, acquisition and/or development of companies in the communications, information technology, retail, healthcare, manufacturing, medical device, software, construction and real estate industries.


Mr. Fairfield is the Executive Managing Director of Concerto Advisors, Inc., a venture development advisory firm; a founding General Partner and the Executive Managing Director of Concerto Venture Partners, a diversified, early-stage focused venture firm; and, a current General Partner and past Managing Director of AAVIN Venture Capital, a sector and stage diversified venture capital/private equity fund.  Within these firms Mr. Fairfield’s responsibilities included and include: fund raising; sourcing deal flow; negotiating the acquisition, financing and disposition of portfolio investments; sitting on the boards of individual portfolio companies and overseeing their growth; managing staffing needs and making compensation decisions; and making portfolio investment determinations as an investment committee member.  Early in his career, Mr. Fairfield practiced business and tax law.  He is currently working with leading venture capitalists, entrepreneurs, educators and government leaders around the world to develop an international system of entrepreneurial and venture capital education and company development.


Mr. Fairfield served as founding Associate Director of the John Pappajohn Entrepreneurial Center at the University of Iowa.  The Iowa program was the first program in the United States to offer an accredited Engineering Certificate in Entrepreneurship.  Since 1998, the Iowa Program has been ranked as one of the top entrepreneurial programs in the United States.


Mr. Fairfield is a member of the National Venture Capital Association, the National Association of Small Business Investment Companies (NASBIC), the Regional Association of Small Business Investment Companies, and the Wisconsin Bar Association.  He currently serves as a member of the Board of Governors of NASBIC, is Chairman of the NASBIC Education Committee and the Venture Capital Institute, and is a past member of the Executive Committee of NASBIC.  Mr. Fairfield has frequently served as a judge and as chairman of the selection panel for the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award Program.  He serves as a commercial reviewer for the National Science Foundation SBIR Program, was a charter member of the MidAmerica Healthcare Investor Network and is Co-Chairman of the MIT Enterprise Forum Committee on Entrepreneurial Ecosystems.  He is a frequent regional, national and international speaker on the topics of innovation and venture capital.


Mr. Fairfield received a BBA in Accounting, JD, and MBA from the University of Iowa.  In 1997, he was named a Price-Babson Fellow in Entrepreneurship at Babson College in Boston.



Stephen Fleming

University of Arizona

At various times, Stephen Fleming has been paid to be an optical physicist, laser fabricator, software developer, field engineer, product manager, corporate trainer, marketing executive, salesman, general manager, entrepreneur, author, venture capitalist, board member, investment banker, consultant, angel investor, public speaker, adjunct university faculty, commercial landlord, academic bureaucrat, and economic developer.


As a venture capitalist, Stephen has over 15 years of private equity experience at the General Partner level. Prior to his venture capital career, he spent 15 years in operations roles at AT&T Bell Laboratories, Nortel Networks, and LICOM (a venture-funded startup).


An Atlanta native and summa cum laude graduate of Georgia Tech, Stephen returned to his alma mater in mid-2005, where he wore two hats as Vice President of the Enter¬prise Innovation Institute and Director of the Advanced Technology Develop-ment Center (ATDC). In 2017, he moved to Tucson to accept a newly-created position as Vice President, Strategic Business Initiatives, at the University of Arizona.


Stephen is active in the “alternative space” industry; he is an investor in seven private aerospace companies and is a founding member of the Space Angels Network. Mr. Fleming serves on the board of the Arizona Technology Council, and has served on the boards of the Technology Association of Georgia and of Culture Connect, a not-for-profit fostering cultural fluency between immigrants and the community at large. He is also a former board member of the Spiritual Living Center of Atlanta, and of Tech High School, a charter high school that emphasized science, math, and technology in urban Atlanta. He is a member of the Leadership Atlanta Class of 2014.



Benjamin Glenn

Shay Glenn LLP

Benjamin Glenn is a nationally recognized IP mentor/coach – the innovator’s consiglieri.  He coaches individuals and teams regarding innovation and entrepreneurship strategy through the lens of competitive advantage captured using his holistic entrepreneurship approach.  Prior engagements include numerous university innovation and entrepreneurship programs, incubators and accelerators, such as, Stanford University BioDesign Program, Johns Hopkins University, Northwestern University, Matter Chicago, Texas Medical Center’s TMCx, South By SouthWest, VentureWell, Village Capital, Kauffman Foundation, Singularity University, and MedTech Innovator.


Benjamin is a founding partner of Shay Glenn LLP, a patent law firm representing company and investor clients in the health, nanotechnology, transportation, agriculture, water and energy sectors.  Before founding Shay Glenn, Benjamin served as a patent counsel for a Silicon Valley Fortune 500 company and in two national law firms.  Drawing from over two decades of Silicon Valley business and legal experience, Benjamin advises investor and innovator clients in the formulation, implementation, and enhancement of strategic and tactical facets of competitive advantage.


Benjamin is a member of Life Science Angels and Angel Capital Association.


Benjamin is a graduate of the United States Naval Academy who served the U.S. Navy in a variety of engineering positions in San Diego, Key West and Washington, DC.



Dr. Morton Grosser

MG Consulting



President, MG Consulting, Menlo Park, California

Consulting practice includes technology and management assessment and corporate strategy for a broad range of companies. Premier venture capital clients include Foundation Capital, Institutional Venture Partners, Kleiner Perkins Caulfield & Byers, Mayfield Fund, Menlo Ventures, New Enterprise Associates, Prospect Venture Partners, Skyline Ventures, and Versant Ventures. Developed strategy for Fortune 100 companies including AMP Inc., Apple Computer, E. I. Dupont de Nemours & Co., Hewlett-Packard, and Nikon Corporation. Other representative clients include Alza Corporation, Boston Consulting Group, Ernst & Young LLP, KPMG LLP, Lucasfilm Ltd., Pixar Animation Studios, Seagate Technology, Walt Disney Imagineering, and Xerox Corporation. Served as a Director of L. H. Alton & Company, Chroma Energy, Chroma Group, Inc., Chroma Medical, Inc., I-Flow Corporation, Lazer-Tron Corporation, Microfabrica Corporation, and Redem Corporation. Served on Scientific Advisory Board of Sunshine Medical Instruments, Inc., Therox Corporation, and Percutaneous Systems, Inc. Venture Capital co-investor with Compass Technology Partners, Institutional Venture Partners, Kleiner Perkins Caulfield & Byers, and Life Science Angels. Current Director of Control Point Medical, Inc. and Entrotech Life Sciences.



Managing Director, L. H. Alton & Company, San Francisco, California

Directed the technology practice of this investment banking partnership.


Director of Publication, Boeing Scientific Research Laboratories, Seattle, Washington

Directed BSRL’s large technical publication program, edited an annual scientific review,

oversaw publication of scientific and engineering papers, co-authored documentary film

scripts. Initiated independent research and was a member of the governing board that

administered this 130-person corporate research laboratory.


Director of Design, Clevite Transistor Corporation, Waltham, Massachusetts

Originated concepts and directed engineering staff in the design and production of

furnaces for growing single crystal silicon and germanium.


Engineering Designer, Raytheon Corporation, Waltham, Massachusetts

Designed a servo system for the largest skin mill in the world (used to cut structural

members of Boeing aircraft) and high-pressure dies for rocket engine components.


Research Associate, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Massachusetts

Designed biological research amplifiers for Dr. Kurt Lion, and collaborated on the isolation

and identification of anterior pituitary hormone with Dr. John Crigler.



Licensed to Boston Scientific Corporation

Co-Designer of a radio frequency (RF) system for discrete ablation of metastatic tumors

(U.S. Patents 7,195,629, 7,387,628, 8,043,289, and 8,348,940)


Licensed to Cytyc Corporation

Co-Designer of a non-invasive electronic detection system for ductile breast cancer

(U.S. Patent 6,314,315)


Licensed to Lazer-Tron Corporation

Co-Designer of an electromechanical lift system (U.S. Patent 5,733,193)


Licensed to Microfabrica Corporation

Co-Designer of a suite of miniature RF and microwave devices and methods for the

fabrication of such devices (U.S. Patents 7,239,219, 7,830,228, and 8,713,788). A new

patent is pending in this file.


Norian Corporation

Designer of an orthopaedic bone repair system (Two U.S. patents filed and pending)


Stanford Medical Center and U.S. Veterans Administration

Co-Designer of a Microelectronic Axon Processor, an implantable nerve chip to restore

functional paths in damaged peripheral motor nerves (U.S. Patent 4,632,116)


Boeing Scientific Research Laboratories

Co-Designer of a laser interferometer for deep-sea density measurements


Gossamer Albatross Team

Co-designed and built components for three human-powered airplanes, including the

Gossamer Albatross that won the £100,000 Kremer Cross-Channel Prize. Was a member of

the flight expedition, a pilot of the Gossamer Albatross II, and wrote the authorized book on

the Gossamer airplane projects.


Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Electronic and optical measurement of high-speed cutting tools

Spectral response of polarizing light systems

Biaxial stress analysis in acutely-loaded textile fibers


Stanford University

Identification, reconstruction, and publication of a Chou Dynasty pistol crossbow

Research and publication on perturbation theory and discovery of the outer planets


Independent Research

Design and development of a gravity-powered rollway (US Patent 3,145,501)

Design and development of a reconfigurable world globe (US Patent 3,037,300)

Design and development of a portable blood coagulation device (US Provisional

Patent granted 08/2013) A full non-provisional patent is pending in this file.



Taught at M.I.T. and Stanford University. Lectured at Dartmouth College, Santa Clara University, U.C.L.A. Medical Center, The University of Texas at Austin, and in Chile at the Escuela de Negocios de Valparaiso, the Universidad de Concepción, and the Universidad del Norte. Lectured at Stanford University in the BioDesign Center, The Design School, the Graduate School of Business, the Medical School, and the departments of Creative Writing, Electrical Engineering, Film and Communication, History, and Mechanical Engineering. Gave a nationally broadcast speech on innovation for the Commonwealth Club of California, the San Francisco Centennial of Flight Lecture, and the keynote address of the Stanford Design Conference. Distinguished Corporate Lecturer for Apple Computer, Boeing Corporation, E. I. Dupont de Nemours & Co., Electronic Arts Corporation, Google, Inc., LSI Logic, and Tektronix. Invited speaker for the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, Society of Automotive Engineers, TiECon 2005, 2007 National Symposium of the Hertz Foundation, 2008 Electric Airplane Symposium, EAA AirVenture 2008, the 2009 speaker series of the Livermore Valley Performing Arts Center, the 2009 Advanced Research Lecture of the Stanford Surgery Division, the 2010 Mission Ventures National Meeting, EAA AeroInnovate 2012, the 2012 Peninsula Bridge Project and TEDx 2013. Was the commencement speaker for the Pinewood High School 2013 graduation, the speaker for the 2014 annual meeting of the Aero Club of Northern California, and a keynote speaker for the International Surgery Innovation Conference at IRCAD in Strasbourg, France in July 2014. Was a principal panelist and speaker at the Silicon Valley Reinvents the Wheel Conference in October 2015.



Massachusetts Institute of Technology

B.S. in General Engineering; Thesis on spectral characterization of polarizing light systems.

M.S. in Mechanical Engineering (Coats & Clark Graduate Fellow); Thesis on biaxial stress

analysis in acutely loaded fibers


Stanford University

Ph.D. in History of Science; Specialization in Astrophysics; Thesis on perturbation theory

and the discovery of Neptune. Stanford Teaching Fellow in History; Ford Foundation

Fellow in Chinese; Stegner Creative Writing Fellow (Winner of international competition)


U.C.L.A. Medical Center

National Institutes of Health Postdoctoral Fellow, Departments of Anatomy/Neuroscience.

Study of polarized electrode synapse sensing in brain.


National Association of Securities Dealers (NASDAQ)

General Securities Registered Representative’s License, Series 7

General Securities Financial Principal’s Credential, Series 24



American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (Associate Fellow)

American Society of Mechanical Engineers (Fellow)

The Authors Guild

Listed in The Blue Book; Contemporary Authors; Jane’s Who’s Who in Aerospace; Men of

Achievement; Who’s Who in California; Who’s Who in the West; Who’s Who of American Inventors



Modest competence in French, German, and Spanish; Rudiments of Italian, Japanese,

Mandarin Chinese (Putonghua), and Tagalog. Currrently learning Hindi (Devanagiri).




The Discovery of Neptune, Harvard University Press, 1962. Also published by Suhrkamp

Verlag (German Edition, 1970), Dover Publications, Inc. (Paperback Edition, 1979),

Koseisha Koseikaku (Japanese Edition, 1985), and Edizioni il Castello (Italian Edition, 1986

The Hobby Shop (novel), Houghton Mifflin, 1967.

The Snake Horn (young adult novel), Atheneum, 1973. Concurrently published by

McClelland & Stewart, Ltd. (Canadian edition); Concurrently published by G. K . Hall

(large print edition)

Diesel: The Man and the Engine, Atheneum 1978. Also published by David & Charles

(United Kingdom Edition, 1980)

Gossamer Odyssey: The Triumph of Human-Powered Flight, Houghton Mifflin, 1981. Also

published by Michael Joseph Ltd. (United Kingdom edition, 1981), Dover Publications, inc.

(Paperback edition 1991), and Zenith Press (Revised edition, 2004)

On Gossamer Wings, published by E. I. Du Pont de Nemours & Co. and York graphics, 1982

The Fabulous Fifty (young adult novel), Macmillan/Atheneum, 1990. (Commonwealth Club

Medal for literary excellence, 1991)

100 Inventions That Shaped History, Bluewood Books, 1993 (Co-Editor)

Currently writing ninth book titled Congruence, a collection of essays.


Other Publications:

Editor, Boeing Scientific Laboratories Review, Seattle, Washington

Author of more than 100 technical papers and reports for business and corporate clients.

Scientific and scholarly papers published in peer-reviewed journals including Artibus Asiae,

Artificial Organs, Communications of the Association for Computing Machinery, Isis, The Journal

of Asian Studies, The Journal of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific, The Journal of the Franklin

Institute, The Journal of Rehabilitation Research, The Proceedings of the Plastic Surgery Research

Council, Restorative Neurology, and Neuroscience.


Published fiction, non-fiction articles, and poetry in The Atlantic, Harper’s, Holiday, Industrial

Design, Natural History, The New Yorker, The Saturday Evening Post, Stanford Magazine,

Technology Review, The Whole Earth Catalog, and The Writer. A number of these pieces have

been republished in anthologies and textbooks.



Patrick F. Hamner

Patriot Capital Partners


Patrick Hamner joined Patriot Capital, a family of private equity/mezzanine lending funds currently investing out of its $260M Fund III as a Managing Director in November 2012. Mr. Hamner served for 24 years with Capital Southwest Corporation, [NASDAQ: CSWC], a Dallas, TX-based SBIC, rising to Senior Vice President with responsibility for developing and monitoring venture capital and private equity investments, and facilitating add-on acquisitions. He served on fourteen boards during his tenure at CSWC. He was the founding Chairman of Heelys, Inc. [NASDAQ: HLYS] from 2000-2007 and joined their management team from 2006-2008 last serving as a Senior Vice President.


After having co-founded a $69 mm non-leveraged SBIC in Dallas from 2009-2011, Mr. Hamner was appointed an adjunct lecturer at the Southern Methodist University Cox School of Business in 2012 and continues to teach in the Professional MBA program.   Mr. Hamner served as the Chairman of the Board of Governors of NASBIC (now Small Business Investor Alliance) in 2001-2002. He serves on the local steering committees of the DFW Private Equity Forum, the Southwest Venture Forum, and the Alliance of M&A Advisors and is an active member of the Association for Corporate Growth.  He is Chairman of the SMU MBA Venture Fund and a Fellow with the Baylor Angel Network.


Mr. Hamner is an advisory member of Marketplace Ministries’ Foundation, a Ruling Elder at Park Cities Presbyterian Church and a former Scoutmaster with BSA Troop 125, where his three sons all achieved Eagle Scout. Since 2007, he has won seven masters national rowing championships, including in 2015, the mixed E double (55 to 60 year olds), while rowing for the Dallas Rowing Club.


Mr. Hamner is a graduate of The University of Texas at Austin (MBA and Dean’s Award) and SMU (BSME cum laude) and he is married to Janie S. Hamner, MD, a pediatrician.



Lewis Jaffe

Jaffe & Associates / MoviMe Network


All businesses are the same; they exist for the sole purpose of “gaining and retailing customers, profitably in order to create real value.”  In the course of his 30+ year career, Lewis Jaffe, following that simple mantra, has lead the growth, successful turnarounds of more than 20 under-performing companies, public and private as their chief executive or outside advisor in a variety of industries creating over $500MM in shareholder value.  Mr. Jaffe’s greatest strengths include leadership, vision, and building a plan that teams can execute with great success.  He is a customer focused leader who understands complex market dynamics, the intricacies of distribution channels and maximizing corporate assets including human capital and leveraging a balance sheet. Mr. Jaffe’s focus is on business to business companies but also has experience with business to consumer.  Much of his concentration has been in telecommunications, manufacturing, media/content delivery, and distribution of B2B and B2C products, disposables through capital goods.  He also has significant experience with M&A activity and post transaction integration.


Mr. Jaffe is a Professor of Business and Entrepreneur-in-Residence at Loyola Marymount University in the Fred Kiesner Center for Entrepreneurship.  Prior to joining the faculty he was the Co-Founder of MoviMe Network, the world’s first ultra-fast download service Hollywood Content.  MoviMe can be found in airports on the WiFi networks as well as there is an internet based store for mobile device users.


Mr. Jaffe has taken interim and permanent roles within organizations to drive change and increased financial performance. Mr. Jaffe was the Chief Executive of Oxford Media Inc., a Video on Demand and High Speed Internet Access Company delivering content and services to the hospitality industry where he grew the Company to the second largest VOD provider in the segments they served while adding high margin services to the same customers and COO of Verso Technologies where he integrated numerous acquisitions that were made prior to his tenure while creating product bundles with in-house technology as well as developing strategic partners with other technology providers. At PictureTel Corporation, a $500 million, NASDAQ-listed Videoconferencing Company, he turned around the Company and increased its market value over 5 fold in two years by refocusing on customers, streamlining the product set and rebuilding the distribution channels.  He also was the managing director of Arthur Andersen’s Corporate Finance practice in Boston where he managed over 20 client engagements in multiple industries designing turnaround and growth plans as well as guiding M&A activity.


Mr. Jaffe holds his Masters Certification of Public Company Board of Directors.  He serves as the Chairman of the Board for FitLife Products and is the lead independent director for York Telecom and the President of the Board of Directors for Providence Speech and Hearing, a not for profit organization 501(c)3 focused on “Enriching life through the gift of speech and hearing.”  He also served for 8 years as the lead independent director on the board of; Benihana Inc. (BNHN:NASDAQ) the nation's largest chain of Japanese teppanyaki and sushi theme restaurants.  As part of his Board duties, Mr. Jaffe has led special committees for boards that were formed to: explore strategic alternatives, options for capital raising, investigations on HR and insider trading allegations and strategic committees for the targeting of potential acquisitions.  He is a sought after public speaker on various topics include: Leadership, Management, Strategic Planning and Problem Solving, Convergence in Telecom and Corporate Renewal.


Mr. Jaffe has been a guest on a number of business shows for CNBC, MSNBC and ABC, and has been quoted in a variety of business and trade publications including Forbes Magazine, The Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, Business Week and the Boston Globe and a YPO resource as well as a former member of the YPO New England Chapter, currently WPO Santa Monica Bay Chapter.  Mr. Jaffe is a graduate of LaSalle University, and the EPSC at Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business.

Carl A. Jenkins

BMO Harris Bank N.A.

Carl A. Jenkins is Managing Director and Head of Community Investments for BMO Harris Bank N.A., the U.S. banking subsidiary of BMO Financial Group.  He oversees Community Reinvestment Act investments targeting lower middle market companies and community-based real estate development in all BMO Harris markets.  Presently, Mr. Jenkins manages a team and investment portfolio with commitments exceeding $500 million and covering the states of Arizona, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Minnesota, Missouri, Washington and Wisconsin.  Prior to his current position, he served as a commercial real estate lender for BMO Capital Markets and the BMO Harris Community Development Lending team.


Prior to joining the bank, Mr. Jenkins worked for the Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC), a national community development financial institution.  He earned his bachelor's degree in architecture from Washington University in St. Louis and holds an MBA from the Kenan-Flagler School of Business at the University of North Carolina.  He serves on the board of directors for several organizations, including; National Association of Affordable Housing Lenders, Cook County Land Bank Authority, Disability Opportunity Fund, Small Business Investor Alliance, Chicago Sinfonietta and Goodman Theatre.  Mr. Jenkins also serves on the advisory committee of several lower middle market private equity funds.

Pitch Johnson

Asset Management Company

Franklin Pitcher (“Pitch”) Johnson was co-founder in 1962 of Draper and Johnson Investment Company, venture capital company, and became an independent venture capitalist in 1965 as the founder of Asset Management Company. Asset Management Company has made over 250 venture investments during its more than 47 years of operation. These have included Amgen, Applied Bio Systems, Applied Micro Circuits, Conductus, Hybritech, IDEC Pharmaceuticals, Octel, Qume, Red Brick Systems, Remedy, Sierra Semiconductor, Tandem Computer, Teradyne and Verity.


He is a past director of the National Venture Capital Association, a past president of the Western Association of Venture Capitalists, and was a trustee of the Foothill-De Anza Community College District for 12 years. He also taught a class in entrepreneurship and venture capital at the Stanford Graduate School of Business for 12 years and is still active on the faculty there. He has served as an advisor to several eastern European countries since 1990 in the area of entrepreneurship and privatization, and has helped form venture funds in several countries. He is active in educational and cultural affairs and served as chairman of the board of San Francisco Opera from 1999-2008. Mr. Johnson is the lead limited partner of Asset Management Ventures and is active in managing his family office and foundation.

Mr. Johnson has a BS in Mechanical Engineering from Stanford University and an MBA from the Harvard Business School.



Rimas Kapeskas

UPS Strategic Enterprise Fund


Rimas manages the UPS Strategic Enterprise Fund (SEF), the private equity strategic investment and corporate venture capital arm of UPS. The fund is focused globally on developing critical partnerships and acquiring knowledge returns from its investments in technology companies and emerging market spaces. Established in 1997, the SEF is an important business development tool that enables exploration of emerging markets and technologies that may enhance the evolving business models at UPS.


Rimas oversees all operations of the fund, including sourcing and evaluating investment opportunities, facilitating the ongoing relationship between UPS and the venture capital community and portfolio companies, and management of the fund staff. He has an MBA from Goizueta Business School at Emory University and a BS from the University of Connecticut. Rimas resides in Dunwoody Georgia with his wife Carla and two children, Luka and Viktoria.



Monro Lanier

Coosa Capital Partners


Monro B. Lanier III, currently Managing Partner at Coosa Capital, has served as Vice Chairman and a Managing Principal of McLarty Capital Partner's Small Business Fund. Mr. Lanier has served in industry leadership roles as the former Chairman of the National Association of Small Business Investment Companies (the primary industry trade association for SBICs, now known as the Small Business Investor Alliance) and Chairman of the Venture Capital Institute. Over the course of his over twenty-five years as a venture and private equity investor, Mr. Lanier has participated in numerous investments in small businesses, served on many boards of directors and board committees and has provided expert testimony in international venture capital litigation.

Prior to Coosa and  MCP, Mr. Lanier was an officer at Hickory Venture Capital Corp., an SBIC, where he negotiated, structured and executed venture, private equity and mezzanine capital investments in start-ups to mid-sized companies in a wide range of industries throughout the South, Midwest, and Mid-Atlantic regions. Mr. Lanier additionally interacted regularly with the SBA on compliance matters and annual examinations.

Prior to Hickory Venture Capital Corp., Mr. Lanier served in corporate and strategic planning at  Sonat/Southern Natural Gas and as an economic analyst with Reynolds Metals Corporation (Reynolds Aluminum). Mr. Lanier served as an advisory board member of Innovation Valley Partners, an affiliate of Battelle Ventures that targeted companies in the health and life sciences, security, and energy and environment sectors. Mr. Lanier was commissioned as an infantry officer in the U.S. Army, achieved a final rank of Captain, and specialized in being uncomfortable. Mr. Lanier has two degrees from the University of Virginia, a B.A. in Economics with distinction/cum laude and an MBA from The Darden School where he received both the Shermet Award and the Faculty Award.



Jeffrey Leavitt, Partner

DLA Piper LLP (US)


Jeffrey Leavitt works with growing companies, private investment entities, and the various groups that advise them.   Mr. Leavitt is a graduate of the Kauffman Fellows Program, a highly competitive fellowship for venture capital professionals (www.kauffmanfellows.org).  He was the first J.D. and only the second person from Atlanta ever accepted into the program.  Kauffman Fellows receive specialized training in private equity investment techniques and develop an extensive network throughout the private equity industry.


Mr. Leavitt served half of his fellowship as an investment professional at a venture capital firm and half in an operating role with a technology company.  He is the only practicing attorney in the country to have completed the Kauffman program


Mr. Leavitt has also managed a consulting service for technology companies in the Southeast.  Before moving to Atlanta, he co-founded a venture capital backed software company in New York City.  He  began his career as an associate with Davis Polk & Wardwell in New York, where he helped consummate several high-profile transactions, including the merger of the Qwest and US West corporations and the merger of the Exxon and Mobil corporations, each the largest in history when announced. He also negotiated several private equity and LBO transactions for Morgan Stanley and CSFB’s investment arms.


Mr. Leavitt is a regular speaker and panelist in the Atlanta technology community, and was named one of Atlanta’s “Top Twenty Techies to Know” by the Atlanta Business Chronicle in 2002.  "Burned Angels: The Coming Wave of Minority Shareholder Oppression Claims in Venture Capital Start-up Companies," his article in the North Carolina Journal of Law & Technology, is now required reading in a number of law school courses on venture capital law.



        Technology Association of Georgia

        Public Finance Task Force, Commission for a New Georgia

        State Bar of Georgia

        State Bar of New York


         “Beware of Burned Angels,” Venture Capital Journal, September 2005.

         "Burned Angels: The Coming Wave of Minority Shareholder Oppression Claims in Venture”

          Capital Start-up Companies," North Carolina Journal of Law & Technology, Spring 2005.

          Letter on Venture Capital Risk, printed in The New York Times, August 11, 2002, “Money & Business” section, p. 13.



Joseph Longosz

Kayne Anderson Capital Advisors


Joe Longosz is a managing director in the firm’s middle market credit activities.  Previously, Mr. Longosz was a managing director of Golub Capital where he established and ran the Atlanta office, served on the firm’s investment committee, and sourced, executed, monitored, and realized middle market debt investments.

Prior to Golub, Mr. Longosz was a managing director at Wachovia, where he formed and ran its Emerging Companies Group, which provided mezzanine debt to early stage companies, and served on the bank’s Equity Capital Investment Committee.  Prior to Wachovia, Mr. Longosz was senior vice president and Southeast region manager for Bank of America Commercial Finance, providing senior and mezzanine debt to small businesses, continuing similar investing activity he undertook at Creditanstalt-Bankverein.

Mr. Longosz received an MBA from The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and a BS in Finance and Computer Science from Boston College.



Olga Loy

Winston & Strawn


Olga Loy represents funds and fund sponsors in structuring, negotiating, and forming private equity and venture capital funds. She plans and structures other complex business transactions, including corporate mergers and acquisitions, leveraged buyouts, recapitalizations, and venture capital investments. Furthermore, she counsels investment advisers, hedge funds, registered investment companies, and broker-dealers across a wide range of investment management, securities, and general corporate matters.

Olga regularly represents large and mid-size private equity funds and their management companies. These clients invest in North America, Eastern Europe, and Latin America. She also advises real estate funds and investors in tax structuring matters, including REIT counsel and planning and cross-border analysis.

Additionally, Olga is an adjunct professor the University of Illinois College of Law, where she teaches a course on private investment funds and introduces students to business, securities, and tax issues relating to private investment funds with an emphasis on private equity, venture capital, and hedge funds.

Olga received her B.A. from Illinois State University. She earned her J.D. magna cum laude, from the University of Illinois College of Law




Heath Naquin



Heath leads VentureWell’s Strategic Development efforts and oversees the identification and development of new opportunities and initiatives to drive VentureWell’s strategic growth. Prior to joining VentureWell, Heath spent nearly 20 years working in the global startup, innovation, and entrepreneurship field. Most recently, he was Executive Director for the Southwest I-Corps Node at the University of Texas at Austin. Heath holds a BBA from St. Edwards University, an MS in Technology Commercialization from the University of Texas at Austin as well as a PMP designation.



Cynthia Ringo

DBL Partners


Cynthia Ringo is a Senior Partner of DBL Partners, and Managing Partner of the prior fund managed by DBL Investors. Ms. Ringo currently sits on the board of directors of RubyRibbon, The RealReal, Urbansitter, Maiyet, Siva Power, and works with View Glass, Yerdle, and Kateeva. Ms. Ringo was formerly a Managing Director of VantagePoint Venture Partners from 2002 to 2008 where she was Group Leader of the Communications, Systems, Internet and Media Practice. Ms. Ringo served as a Board Member of the following VantagePoint portfolio companies: Entrisphere, Klipsh, Tymphany, Widevine, Livescribe, Provina and Meriton.


Prior to VantagePoint Venture Partners, Ms. Ringo served as the CEO of Coppercom, a next-​​generation network switching company, from 1998 to 2001 and was the Chairman of the Board from 2001 to 2002. While at Coppercom Ms. Ringo took the company from pre-​​revenue and five employees to an industry leader in two new communications markets. Coppercom was acquired by Heico Corporation in 2003. Prior to Coppercom Ms. Ringo was the SVP of Corporate Development and Business Units at networking company Madge Networks from 1993 to 1997. While at Madge Networks Ms. Ringo had P&L responsibility for 3 business units with $400 million revenue and 500 staff, and identified and negotiated acquisitions worth over $500 million. Ms. Ringo was the VP Marketing and Sales at data warehousing software company Red Brick Systems from 1990 to 1993. From 1980 to 1990 Ms. Ringo held various legal, sales, marketing, business development, and consulting roles.


Ms. Ringo served on the board of the Forum for Women Entrepreneurs from 2000 to 2004, and as Chair of the Board for 2001 through 2003. Ms. Ringo is a member of Broadway Angels and a mentor to Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business, Center for Entrepreneurial Studies. She also serves as an advisor to several organizations including: the SVForum, a Silicon Valley leadership forum, Astia, supporting women-​​led entrepreneurs, as a judge for the MacArthur Foundation’s 100&Change competition, and is a member of the Emeritus Board, Watermark. Ms. Ringo received a BS in Legal Systems from Georgia State University and a JD from Emory University School of Law.



Joseph Silver, Partner

DLA Piper LLP (US)


Joseph G. Silver is a business lawyer assisting companies and investors with venture capital and private equity investments, mergers and acquisitions and commercial transactions. He works with institutional investors in fund formation and the purchase, sale and financing of their portfolio companies.

He has broad experience in structuring and negotiating fund offering documents, common and preferred stock investments, joint ventures and public/private and private/private mergers and acquisitions and general corporate matters.

As counsel to numerous technology and healthcare companies and other growing businesses, Mr. Silver advises clients on various legal and business matters, including entity formation, corporate governance, capitalization, equity compensation, capital raising and customer contracts.

Mr. Silver is a regular speaker and panelist in the local investment community and has published several articles.

Recent Representative Transactions

  • Represented technology, healthcare and life sciences companies in more than 75 recent issuances of equity and debt securities.
  • Represented private equity funds, venture capital funds and corporate, strategic and angel investors in more than 100 recent financing transactions.
  • Represented institutional investors in the formation of private equity funds and venture capital funds, along with numerous associated portfolio company investments and acquisitions.
  • Represented public technology and telecommunications companies in several private company acquisitions, joint ventures and complex commercial transactions.



Eli Velasquez



Eli oversees the development of VentureWell’s new and ongoing early-stage innovator programs, and leads investor network development. Previous to VentureWell, his efforts in Texas led to the founding of a new angel network, and over $20M in funding for startups, entrepreneurship programs, and proof of concept funds. He obtained a BS in Mechanical Engineering from Boston University and a JD degree with an Intellectual Property Certificate from Whittier Law School.



Steve Vivian

Kestrel Capital Group


Steve Vivian is a Principal & Founder of Kestrel Capital Group, an independent sponsor private equity firm focused on buying and holding businesses with established or emerging leadership positions in their end markets. He has 18 years of experience financing and investing in middle market companies. Mr. Vivian has been an active industry leader, having served as a past Chairman of the National Association of Small Business Investment Companies (formerly NASBIC, now knows as the Small Business Investors Alliance, or SBIA) and various leadership roles at the Illinois Venture Capital Association. Mr. Vivian is a frequent speaker on local college campuses and received both an MBA and a BS in General Engineering from the University of Illinois.



Anita Watkins

Rex Health Ventures


Anita Watkins joined Rex Health Ventures in 2012 as the Director of Strategic Innovation.  She works with companies to evaluate fit and with portfolio companies to deliver on strategic investment by leveraging expertise within UNC REX Healthcare and across UNC Health Care.  Anita is also actively engaged in the community serving on a number of boards including the Council for Entrepreneurial Development, NC Museum of Natural Sciences, Innovate Raleigh, the NCSU College of Humanities and Social Sciences and NC ASSIST, an NSF funded engineering research center focused on developing disruptive healthcare wearables. She is a member of OnBoard NC and the NCSU Chancellor’s Innovation Fund Selection Committee.  Prior to joining Rex, she served as the Vice President for Government Relations for the University of North Carolina’s 17-campus university system.  She holds a Juris Doctor and Master degree from UNC-Chapel Hill and undergraduate degrees in Political Science and Spanish from North Carolina State University.



Andrew Wicks

The Darden School, University of Virginia


Andrew Wicks is the Ruffin Professor of Business Administration and teaches Ethics at Darden.  He is Director of the Olsson Center for Ethics, Director of the Doctoral Program, and an Academic Advisor for the Business Roundtable Institute for Corporate Ethics.


Professor Wicks has published a business ethics textbook, and his articles have appeared in a wide variety of journals in business ethics, management, and the humanities. His research interests include writing on stakeholder responsibility, stakeholder theory, trust, health care ethics, total quality management, and ethics and entrepreneurship.

He has taught ethics to MBAs and executives in the U.S. and abroad and received awards for both his research and teaching.

Professor Wicks joined the Darden faculty in 2002. He previously taught for 10 years at the University of Washington Graduate Business School.





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