The Team

Investment Team

Brian Hirsch
Managing Partner
Chip Meakem
Managing Partner
Zander Farkas

Zander is a Principal at Tribeca Venture Partners. Prior to joining Tribeca, Zander was an Associate and Venture Investor at Greycroft Partners where he served as a board observer to a number of portfolio companies, including Elite Daily (sold to Daily Mail), BetterCloud (also a TVP portfolio company), and JW Player. Zander sourced Greycroft’s investments in Button, TheSkimm, and Expel, a cybersecurity company. He also founded Next Gen Events – a series of dinners and events for pre-partner VCs in the North East and has been recognized by Business Insider as a 30 under 30 Rising Star in Venture Capital.

Zander started his career at Bain & Company. In addition, Zander was an early employee at CityMaps (acquired by TripAdvisor), where he led Corporate Development, and at Earnest Research, where he was Chief of Staff to the CEO.

Zander holds a B.A. from Georgetown University and an MBA from The Wharton School of Business. He was a member of the Georgetown University Sailing Team and won two national championships during his tenure.

Zander is a Corporator of the Belmont Hill School.

Anna Whiteman
Senior Associate

Anna is a Senior Associate at Tribeca Venture Partners. Prior to joining TVP, she was an investment banking Analyst at Credit Suisse and an Associate at VMG Partners, a consumer private equity group in San Francisco, where she focused on deal execution, portfolio oversight and advisory to companies such as Stone Brewing, Health Warrior, and Quest Nutrition.

Anna has partnered closely with entrepreneurs both in the FinTech space during her time at Credit Suisse while working on the Partnership for New York’s FinTech Innovation Lab and in the branded consumer products space while at VMG. Additionally, Anna serves as Chairman of the Youth Advisory Board at Rockflower Partners, a venture philanthropy fund supporting female entrepreneurs globally.

Anna holds a B.A., magna cum laude, from the University of Pennsylvania in Philosophy, Politics and Economics.

Nitya Rajendran

Nitya is an Associate at Tribeca Venture Partners.  Prior to joining Tribeca Venture Partners, she was an investment banking analyst at Lazard where she received the André Meyer Fellowship.  In her role at Lazard, she worked on mergers and acquisitions as well as restructurings across numerous sectors within the Middle Market Group. 

Her passion for entrepreneurship and investing began at Georgetown University where she was the Director of Operations at the Social Innovation Public Service (“SIPS”) Fund, a $1.5 million fund dedicated to fund students’ and alumni’s projects to improve the Georgetown community and the community at large.

Nitya graduated magna cum laude from Georgetown University with a B.A. in Classics and a minor in Economics. 


Brian O’Kelley
CEO and Co-Founder, AppNexus

Brian O’Kelley is CEO and Co-Founder of AppNexus, the world’s largest independent ad tech company and one of the most successful technology companies in the history of New York. Widely considered a visionary in Internet advertising and heralded as “the new king of ad tech” by Forbes, Brian started AppNexus in 2007 to create a technology platform that would transform the advertising ecosystem.

Immediately prior to founding AppNexus, Brian revolutionized the ad tech industry by inventing the first online ad exchange while he was CTO of Right Media (later sold to Yahoo! for $850 million in 2007). Today, Brian holds numerous additional patents that help AppNexus’ technology power the most innovative trading solutions and marketplaces for Internet advertising, and further the company’s mission to create a better Internet.

Brian is also an active investor in and early-stage advisor to dozens of tech companies, including Invite Media (acquired by Google in 2010), MediaMath, Dstillery and Solve Media. Brian has been honored by Crain’s 40 Under 40, Adweek 50, Silicon Alley 100, and was recognized as an E&Y Entrepreneur of the Year in the New York region in 2012. He holds a BSE in computer science from Princeton University where he is an active alumnus. Brian lives in New York City with his wife and daughter.

Jacob Pechenik
CEO and Founder, Venture Forth Productions

Jacob is currently the Founder & CEO of Venture Forth Productions, a specialty film finance and production company. Previously, Jacob was Founder and CEO of YellowJacket, which was acquired by IntercontinentalExchange (NYSE:ICE) in January 2008.

Jacob has nearly two decades of experience in the development and support of enterprise-class trading platforms for large financial services firms and Fortune 500 companies. Prior to establishing YellowJacket in 2003, Jacob founded and served as the CEO of TechTrader, a provider of business-to-business enterprise software for public and private trading exchanges catering to the direct materials markets.

A frequent speaker and widely acknowledged industry expert, Jacob has been featured in numerous industry and business publications and conferences. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Jonathan Hsu
CFO and COO, AppNexus

Jonathan is Chief Financial Officer and Chief Operating Officer of AppNexus. A respected media and tech industry veteran, he previously served as CEO of Recyclebank, one of Fast Company’s “50 Most Innovative Companies in the World.” Prior to that, Jonathan spent 11 years in a number of executive roles – including CEO, COO, and CFO – at 24/7 Media, leading the company through its $649 million sale to WPP, the world leader in marketing communications. Jonathan was also an M&A investment banker at JP Morgan. Jonathan is a Director on Ghostery’s Board, an advisor to Tribeca Venture Partners, and a mentor in the NYC Venture Fellows Program. He has served on the World Economic Forum Technology Pioneers Council, Media.NYC.2020 Committee, Green.NYC.2025 Committee, and White House Forum on Business Innovation. Jonathan holds a BA in Economics from Harvard University and an MBA in Strategic Management and Finance from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.

Stephen Messer
Vice Chairman and Co-Founder, Collective[i]

Stephen Messer is the vice chairman of Collective[i] and a founder of the company, along with Tad Martin and Heidi Messer, his sister. Prior to Collective[i], Stephen and Heidi co-founded LinkShare Corporation, a host to one of the world’s largest online affiliate networks, linking advertisers with publishers. With Stephen as chairman and CEO, LinkShare was for two consecutive years recognized by Deloitte &Touche as the fastest-growing technology company in the New York Region. Stephen was awarded the Best Service to the Industry award by ABestWeb, recognizing his contributions to development of the affiliate marketing industry, and in 2005 he received the prestigious Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award for the New York Region. In 2005, he and Heidi sold LinkShare to Rakuten (4755:JASDAQ) for $425 million.

Stephen is a co-founder of World Evolved, a platform for global investment and expansion, and is or has been an adviser to Industry Ventures; Tribeca Venture Partners; Massive Incorporated, which was acquired by Microsoft; LoyaltyLab, which was acquired by Tibco; and Netplenish. Additionally, he is an investor in numerous start-up ventures, including DODOcase; the nanosatellite company Spire; and LifeBooker. He is currently, or has been, on the boards of Collective[i], Spire, LifeBooker, the Association for Interactive Media (AIM), and Vente, which was acquired by Experian. Before co-founding LinkShare, he produced and directed studies on cyber-communications and telecommunications as an assistant director of the Columbia University Institute of Tele-Information (CITI). Stephen holds a J.D. from the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law in New York and a B.A. from Lafayette College.

Will Margiloff
CEO, IgnitionOne

Will Margiloff serves as CEO of IgnitionOne. Margiloff is charged with the overall vision and strategic direction of IgnitionOne’s services and Digital Marketing Suite. With digital marketing experience stretching back to 1995, Margiloff brings unparalleled innovation and expertise to the company and to the industry. As one of the early pioneers in the Internet marketing field, he has helped revolutionize the online landscape, leading the use of new online advertising formats and technologies.

Our Entrepreneurs

Andrew Lipovsky
CEO & Founder, eponym

Andrew started eponym at the Brooklyn Flea with a card table and one brand of glasses. Now, as one of the fastest growing startups in NYC, he has built a company and team that is working to change the eyewear market by helping brands (alice + olivia, Billy Reid, Steven Alan, Jason Wu, and more) create and distribute eyewear directly to consumers. He has a deep love for (and encyclopedic knowledge of) fashion and unique outer-borough restaurants.

Nader Hamda
CEO, Ozobot

Nader Hamda brings over 18 years of experience as CEO of two previous tech start-up companies. In 1992, Hamda turned his MBA from Pace University’s Lubin School of Business into a thriving e-business called TechnoInteractive. Ten years later, he was ready for a completely new adventure. Turning his attention to babies as CEO and co-founder of Cloud b, the company became one of the world’s leading manufacturers of products and accessories to help parents and children sleep.

In 2012 as a new decade of knowledge and experience branched into electronics for the smartphone generation, Hamda founded Evollve Inc., a company built around finding creative ways to engage young minds. Introducing the popular smart toy robot Ozobot, Hamda has blended physical and digital technologies to entertain, educate and socially interact while focusing on instilling valuable life skills. To date, thousands of schools around the world have adopted Ozobot into their curriculum and students are now learning sequential thinking and logical reasoning all while creating and programming their own coding concepts.

Joseph Neiman
Founder & VP Business Development, ACV Auctions

Joe started his automotive career at 15 years old and never looked back. He grew and developed a successful independent dealership that eclipsed annual retail sales of 500+ and month over month inventory turn exceeding 100%. His challenges associated with sourcing enough inventory drove him to reconsider his own business and join a large-scale franchise dealership operation. In this setting, he learned first-hand how the new car dealerships struggle at evaluating trades and liquidating wholesale inventory. Being able to walk in both the new and used car dealer’s shoes provided Joe the unique perspective to create a solution that would bring both buyers and sellers together with a legitimate auction that removed all the time commitments, logistical challenges, high costs per transaction, and risk. From its first iteration, ACV Auctions has been founded on the fundamental believe that a business will only survive if it truly adds substantial value to all of its users. ACV has achieved the prestigious triple-crown by being a true Win-Win-Win. The buyers, sellers, and even the retail customer all benefit greatly when dealers transact on ACV.

George Chamoun
CEO, ACV Auctions

George Chamoun became CEO of ACV Auctions on September 16, 2016. As an early angel investor in ACV, George was drawn by the company’s long term potential. George brings a successful track record of accomplishment as an entrepreneur and senior executive. He co-founded Synacor (Nasdaq: SYNC) right out of college in 1998, and spent the next two decades building it into a trusted technology and revenue partner for some of the largest video and communication providers in the world. George was President of Sales and Marketing, growing the business for many years which enabled the company to go public in 2012.

George has been recognized for his accomplishments:

– In 2009 when Multichannel News named him one of the publication’s “40-under-40” most influential innovators in the industry
– In 1999 recipient of the Ernst & Young “Entrepreneur of the Year” award in NY

George has a passion for Entrepreneurship and serves as Chairman of Launch NY, a non-for-profit organization supporting the startup ecosystem for Upstate New York. George is a proud husband and father of two great kids.

Mike DeSimone
CEO, ShopKeep

Michael DeSimone is the President and CEO of ShopKeep, the cloud-based technology solution that transforms an iPad into a connected cash register and is used by more than 23,000 small businesses. ShopKeep was developed and designed for small business owners, by small business owners to give independent retailers and restaurants access to sophisticated operations management technology without the high level of costs and complexity traditionally associated with point of sale systems. ShopKeep enables business owners to tap into powerful insights that can enhance their operations and improve their bottom line.

Michael is a global chief executive, with more than 25 years of experience working within the financial services and technology industry. Prior to joining ShopKeep, Michael was President and CEO of Borderfree, where he was responsible for the overall strategic direction including the company’s transformation from an online currency conversion service to a provider of global ecommerce solutions. He led the company through their successful IPO in 2014 and its sale to Pitney Bowes in 2015.

As President and CEO at ShopKeep, Michael leads strategy to sustainably grow and scale the business, which has processed more than $6 billion in transactions in 2015. ShopKeep has over 275 employees and has raised over $72 million in funding.

Faisal Mushtaq
CEO, Truveris

With over 25 years of healthcare experience, Faisal’s focus as CEO of Truveris is to ensure that the company delivers on its passion – helping employers, payers, pharmacies, pharmaceutical companies and consumers improve drug pricing transparency across the prescription drug ecosystem. Prior to joining Truveris, Faisal held a variety of executive leadership positions at Allscripts Healthcare Solutions. Most recently, Faisal served as Senior Vice President and General Manager of Payer and Life Sciences Business Unit, one of the fastest growing markets for Allscripts. In that role, he worked with some of the largest pharmaceutical manufacturers, pharmacy benefit management (PBM) companies, clinical research organizations (CRO) and health plans to bring to market innovative analytics and operational improvement solutions. In his 8 years at Allscripts, he was one of the executive leaders responsible for growing the company from 1,500 to over 7,000 employees and from $350 million to over $1.6 billion in annual revenue.

Before Allscripts, Faisal worked as Chief Product and Development Officer at Neoforma, Chief Product Officer at Biz360 and Chief Operating Officer at CresSoft. Faisal completed postgraduate studies at Harvard Business School and earned a BS in computer science and electrical engineering from University of Wisconsin-Madison. Faisal has co-authored five patents and has served as board member at various entrepreneurship and Industry development organizations.

Eric Typaldos
CTO & Co-Founder, Hive

Eric is CTO and co-founder of Hive. His technical expertise with enterprise collaborative platforms was first used at the White House, where he was responsible for the architecture of, the federal government’s platform, used by over 750,000 employees.

Following the resounding success of the project, he was chosen to work on platform architecture in Oracle’s federal consulting practice. While at Oracle, Eric focused on collaboration in government, education and healthcare across federal government and Fortune 500 projects.

Eric holds a BA in Informatics from the Indiana University where he specialized telecommunications infrastructure, data mining and network theory.

John Furneaux
CEO & Co-Founder, Hive

John leads Hive as CEO and co-founder. Starting his career as a strategy consultant to Fortune 500 companies, he saw the serious challenges teams faced in working together effectively. It was the catalyst for a career-long specialism in the tools teams use to achieve their goals productively.

After leading the national implementation of Sharepoint for the UK’s Department of Education, John left the consulting world to join Huddle, a small UK collaboration platform, as employee 12.

Starting on the frontline, John rose to lead Global Customer Success, building a large team of collaboration specialists across the USA and UK as as Huddle grew through Series D to become Europe’s largest collaboration platform.

Taking advantage of a huge adjacent opportunity in the team collaboration space, John taught himself to code to build a prototype of his vision for Hive.

John received his MA in Mathematics and Law from the University of Cambridge and is a keen pilot and cyclist.

Lewis Gersh
CEO & Founder, PebblePost

Lewis Gersh is CEO and Chairman of PebblePost guiding corporate strategy and vision at at the company with over 19 years of board and executive management experience. Prior to PebblePost, Lewis founded Gersh Venture Partners (later Metamorphic Ventures), one of the first seed venture funds in the country, focused primarily on B2B marketing and eCommerce technologies, especially those bridging online data with traditional markets. Lewis built one of the largest portfolios of companies specializing in retargeting, eCommerce and database marketing.

Prior to Metamorphic, Lewis founded Worldly Information Network, a database direct marketing company leveraging user-driven segmentation. Worldly became the largest provider of free investment newsletters on the web, publishing over 40 daily/weekly topics and delivering upwards of 1 billion email newsletters through both its O&O and network sites.

Lewis has a BA from San Diego State University and a JD and Masters in Intellectual Property from UNH School of Law. Lewis has served on many corporate and non-profit boards, and is an accomplished endurance athlete having competed in many Ironman triathlons, ultra marathons and parenting.

Adam Hanina
CEO & Founder, AiCure

Adam Hanina is CEO and co-founder of AiCure. He has been a strategist in healthcare software delivery for over fifteen years and holds over a dozen patents in his name. Prior to AiCure, he helped further develop Cerner Corporation’s European strategy and was a Visiting Fellow of eHealth at Imperial College in London, UK. Mr. Hanina has spoken extensively on the topic of healthcare innovation and has acted as a subject-matter expert on medication adherence technologies for the National Institutes of Health (NIH). He is currently a principal investigator for multiple NIH innovation grants. He holds an MBA from the Wharton School of Business.

Jack Kokko
CEO & Founder, AlphaSense

Jack Kokko is the CEO and founder of AlphaSense, a software startup providing a groundbreaking research engine for financial services and corporate intelligence. As a former financial analyst, his mission is to solve the information overload problem and build AlphaSense into a ubiquitous platform used by knowledge professionals across Wall Street and beyond. AlphaSense is used by hundreds of investment management firms and corporations and has won numerous industry awards, including, “best analytics product” and “best mobile solution.”

Before AlphaSense, he was the founding CEO of Silecs, Inc., building the company into a global supplier of advanced materials, improving the performance of billions of semiconductor devices used in mass market electronics. Previously, Mr. Kokko was a senior analyst on Morgan Stanley’s technology team in Menlo Park, California, and telecom team in London, UK.

Mr. Kokko holds an MBA with a major in finance from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. He also holds a master’s degree in electrical engineering from the University of Oulu, Finland and a bachelor’s degree in finance from the Helsinki School of Economics.

Aaron Dallek
CEO and Co-Founder, Opternative

Aaron Dallek is the Co-Founder and CEO of Opternative, the first online eye exam that delivers a prescription, signed by an ophthalmologist, for glasses and contacts lenses. A serial entrepreneur, Aaron started a computer consulting firm when he was only 14 years old. In 2006 he launched a venture capital funded, carbon information management software business called Planet Metrics, which he sold to PTC. While in college at the University of California Berkeley, Aaron co-founded Cheap Ink, which offers recycled printer cartridges. In 2010, Cheap Ink was ranked 544th in the Inc. 5000.

Abel Mathew
CEO and Co-Founder, Backtrace

Abel is the CEO and Co-Founder of Backtrace. Prior to this, Abel was a Head of Engineering at AppNexus, combining his interests in engineering and product management to lead a team of developers to improve client ad optimization while reducing platform-wide costs. Prior to this, Abel was a technical leader on the AppNexusAdServer Team where he helped design and implement their low-latency advertising platform. Before AppNexus, Abel was a kernel module and tools developer at IBM. Abel holds a B.S. in Electrical and Computer Engineering from The University of Texas at Austin.

Brandon Wright
CEO and Co-Founder, Cognical

Brandon is co-founder and CEO of Cognical, parent of Zibby, the lease-to-own payment option for consumer durables, online and in-store. Prior to starting Cognical at Cornell, he co-founded a prime residential mortgage brokerage and a retail coffee business, both in the Pacific Northwest. Brandon has also co-founded business associations and served on mayoral advisory committees for economic development. Brandon has a BA in Economics from Whitman College and an MBA from Cornell University.

Brian O’Kelley
CEO and Co-Founder, AppNexus

Brian O’Kelley is CEO and Co-Founder of AppNexus, the world’s largest independent ad tech company and one of the most successful technology companies in the history of New York. Widely considered a visionary in Internet advertising and heralded as “the new king of ad tech” by Forbes, Brian started AppNexus in 2007 to create a technology platform that would transform the advertising ecosystem.

Immediately prior to founding AppNexus, Brian revolutionized the ad tech industry by inventing the first online ad exchange while he was CTO of Right Media (later sold to Yahoo! for $850 million in 2007). Today, Brian holds numerous additional patents that help AppNexus’ technology power the most innovative trading solutions and marketplaces for Internet advertising, and further the company’s mission to create a better Internet.

Brian is also an active investor in and early-stage advisor to dozens of tech companies, including Invite Media (acquired by Google in 2010), MediaMath, Dstillery and Solve Media. Brian has been honored by Crain’s 40 Under 40, Adweek 50, Silicon Alley 100, and was recognized as an E&Y Entrepreneur of the Year in the New York region in 2012. He holds a BSE in computer science from Princeton University where he is an active alumnus. Brian lives in New York City with his wife and daughter.

Brock Blake
CEO and Founder, Lendio

Brock’s passion is to make small business lending simple for the 30 million Main Street businesses across the USA. Lendio is growing rapidly by helping over 100,000 small businesses each year get matched to a lender to start or grow their business. Successful companies start with passion to solve a major problem, a great team, and a superior company culture.

Brock has led Lendio to become #34 in Inc.’s 500 Fastest Growing Private Companies. At age 24, Brock was recognized by Utah Business Magazine as one of the Top 40 Under 40 business executives in Utah. In 2006, the Utah Technology Council named him Utah’s Emerging Executive of the Year. He has also been included on vSpring Capital’s v100 Top Entrepreneur’s list five times in the last six years. Brock’s most important accomplishments come from being a husband and father of four.

Chinedu Eleanya
CTO and Co-Founder, Cognical

As Co-Founder and CTO at Cognical, Chinedu leads engineering, product development, and technical integration. Prior to starting Cognical upon graduation, Chinedu earned a BS in Biology from Cornell University.

David Klein
CEO and Co-Founder, CommonBond

David Klein is the CEO and Co-Founder of CommonBond, a venture backed financial services company that has raised over $100M to lower the cost
of student loans in the U.S. Featured in publications such as Inc Magazine, The Wall Street Journal, and The Economist, David is responsible for ensuring capital growth, creating a best-in-class borrower experience, and building a world-class team. Prior to CommonBond, David worked in consumer finance at American Express as Director of Strategic Planning and Business Development, where he led a $250M annual business. David started his professional career as a consultant at McKinsey & Company, where he advised clients in the financial services industry.

David graduated from Brandeis University with a BA in Politics, Economics, and International Business and attended the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. David is also a former Board Member of the Bronx Charter School for the Arts in New York.

Jade Roth
CEO, Sagence Learning

Jade is the Chief Executive Officer of Sagence Learning, bringing more than 30 years of experience in digital publishing, educational technology, and collegiate retailing to the role. As CEO, Jade is responsible for all of the company’s strategy and operations, with a focus on enabling partner institutions to help more students master the critical knowledge and skills they need to achieve their professional and personal goals. A digitally fluent education and learning materials leader, Jade built unparalleled expertise in educational publishing and digital education from the ground up at Barnes & Noble Education, starting on the floor of Barnes & Noble stores and ultimately taking on the role of Vice President, Books, Digital Strategy and Chief Product Officer. In that position, Jade expanded Barnes & Noble College’s digital footprint, driving double-digit annual growth for digital sales, launching innovative mobile apps and a web reader, and overseeing all aspects of product development and product management.

In 2015, Jade joined Flat World (the predecessor of Sagence Learning) as Senior Vice President, Strategy and Content, developing new offerings for colleges and universities that enable them to offer flexible and measureable educational experiences that are centered on the needs of students. She was appointed CEO in February 2016.

Jade frequently speaks at national industry events on the transformation of learning materials in higher education. She has served on the Advisory Board of Penn State’s World Campus, as a Trustee for the National Association of College Stores, and is an advisor to LRNR, an adaptive learning platform, and Bright Hill Press, a nonprofit literary organization that focuses on arts education.

David Politis
CEO and Founder, BetterCloud

David Politis is the founder and CEO of BetterCloud where he oversees the day-to-day activities of the company and is responsible for the overall product vision and business strategy. As a pioneer in the cloud services industry, David has vast experience launching and building high growth technology companies and an immense passion for enterprise cloud technology.

Before founding BetterCloud, David was an early employee of Cloud Sherpas, the preeminent global provider of cloud services for Google Apps. As the VP of SMB Solutions, David led Cloud Sherpas to become the leading Google Apps services provider and reseller to small and medium sized businesses worldwide. He also managed product development for SherpaTools, which became the #1 ranked admin tool in the Google Apps Marketplace. During his tenure at Cloud Sherpas, David forged a close relationship with Google’s enterprise team.

Prior to Cloud Sherpas, David was the founding employee and General Manager of Vocalocity (acquired by Vonage [NYSE: VG]), which he grew into one of the top providers of cloud PBX technology. As General Manager, David ran day-to-day operations and led the company’s product strategy.

David is a native of New York City and holds a Bachelor’s degree in Economics from Emory University. He has contributed to Mashable, VentureBeat, Forbes, BetaBeat and others and has a monthly column in TechRepublic’s Google in the Enterprise blog.

Glen Meakem
CEO and Founder, Forever, Inc.

Glen Meakem is the Founder & CEO of Forever, Inc., the world’s first and only permanent media storage and sharing company. A successful entrepreneur and business leader who has founded and built a number of companies, Glen’s passion for preserving important information and memories goes back to 1991 when he returned from serving as a U.S. Army officer in the First Gulf War. That summer, Glen and his wife, Diane, recorded videos of their grandparents talking about their lives and values. Ever since, Glen has thought about how to permanently preserve and share those videos and other family treasures. After many years, these thoughts led to the founding of Forever in May of 2012.

Between 2005 and 2012, Glen founded and led a successful early-stage venture capital firm called Meakem Becker Venture Capital (MBVC). Under Glen’s leadership, MBVC invested in a number of technology companies, including Kiva Systems (sold to Amazon), HotPads (sold to Zillow), Shipwire (sold to Ingram Micro), and CloudMeter (sold to Splunk).

Glen’s entry into the venture capital industry was preceded by his widely chronicled role as Founder, Chairman and CEO of FreeMarkets, Inc., which was the leading provider of internet-deployed software and services for automating the sourcing processes of Global 1000 companies. Glen founded FreeMarkets in 1995, took it public in a record setting IPO in 1999, and then sold it to Ariba in 2004. At its peak, FreeMarkets had a publicly traded market cap of $13 billion.

Early in his career Glen was a Manager in General Electric’s Corporate Business Development Group, an Associate with McKinsey & Company, and held a range of consumer marketing and product management positions for Kraft-General Foods. Glen was also a combat engineer officer in the United States Army Reserve, serving as a platoon leader in Saudi Arabia and Kuwait during the First Gulf War. Glen graduated A.B. cum laude from Harvard University and later earned his M.B.A. from Harvard Business School.

Every Saturday morning since 2008, Glen has hosted “Glen Meakem on the Weekend,” a live, syndicated talk radio show, where he discusses entrepreneurship, economics, history and politics, advising people on how to make themselves and our country more successful.

Glen and his wife, Diane, have been married for twenty-five years and have five children.

Jaron Lukasiewicz
CEO and Founder, Coinsetter

Jaron Lukasiewicz is the Chief Executive Officer and Founder of Coinsetter. Prior to Coinsetter, Jaron was the Co-Founder of Ticketometer, a social media-focused online ticketing platform. Prior to that, Jaron was an Associate at The CapStreet Group, a Houston-based private equity firm, and an investment banker at J.P. Morgan and Madison Williams in their global investment banking groups. Jaron started his career as a summer analyst at SPB Partners, a Las Vegas-based private equity firm.

Jaron graduated from Rice University on the President’s Honor Roll with a Bachelor of Arts in Economics and is fluent in Spanish and Portuguese. He is a frequent speaker at events on the topic of bitcoin and financial technology and has been featured in The Wall Street Journal, The Financial Times, Bloomberg, CNBC, Fox Business, TechCrunch, Mashable, Entrepreneur, Institutional Investor, Forex Magnates and other news media.

Jason Richelson
Chief Strategy Officer and Founder, ShopKeep

Jason Richelson is the Founder and Chief Strategy Officer of ShopKeep. A technologist who has worked in big 5 consulting and on Wall Street, Jason opened a specialty food and wine store in 2004. He grew that business, which employed more than 70 people, to three locations in Brooklyn and lower Manhattan. Jason had many problems with his PC-based point of sale system, and while on vacation in 2008, his store servers crashed and essentially crippled the business. This event inspired Jason to build a more reliable, cloud-based point of sale system for small businesses just like his.

As head of Strategy at ShopKeep, Jason stays in close contact with customers working to understand their needs and translate them into opportunities for ShopKeep to expand its product range and grow the business.

Jawn McQuade
Co-Founder, MakersKit

Jawn McQuade is the Co-Founder of MakersKit. Growing up in Oakland, California, he quickly developed a love for the arts and began studying film at a young age. He went on to study Peace & Conflict Studies at Cal but very quickly realized his interest lay elsewhere. He dropped out of Cal after only a few short semesters and began looking for something that he could call his own. Soon, he met his current co-founder, Mike Stone. Together they launched a new brand within the maker community, MakersKit.

Jim Spanfeller
CEO and Founder, Spanfeller Media Group

Jim Spanfeller is CEO & Founder of Spanfeller Media Group (SMG), bringing media into the digital age through premium subject-specific content. The company’s first website, The Daily Meal, launched in January 2011 and covers all things related to food and drink. It is one of the fastest growing content sites of all time. Launched in June 2012, The Active Times is the second vertical content site of SMG, and covers everything in the realm of outdoor sports, fitness, and adventure travel. Spanfeller is secretary of the Online Publisher’s Association (OPA) and is a chairman emeritus of the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB). Prior to founding SMG, Spanfeller served as president and CEO of, home page for the world’s business leaders.

Jim Waldrop
CEO, Chairman and Founder, HomeSphere

Jim Waldrop is the Founder, CEO & Chairman of HomeSphere. With a professional tenure that includes more than 30 years of new home construction industry experience, Jim is a seasoned expert whose background incorporates deep knowledge of residential construction financing and development, building products, and applied systems technologies. Formerly the executive vice president of Pulte Homes, Inc. (NYSE: PHM) – an international homebuilding company that has constructed in excess of 370,000 homes – Waldrop combines an insider’s knowledge of the homebuilding industry with an educational background and career experience in operations, finance, and information systems.

Immediately prior to founding HomeSphere, Waldrop served as CEO of Cathay Global, an international firm with investments in the United States, Pacific Rim, and Latin America in commercial and residential construction as well as several other related industries.

In addition, Waldrop has 15 years of technology management and system development experience focused on international and United States-based financial and operating management systems. He holds a bachelor’s degree in systems analysis from Miami University and an MBA in finance and information systems from the University of Colorado. A past member of the Information Technology Workgroup of the National Association of Homebuilders Business Management & Information Technology Committee, Waldrop also has served on Miami University’s School of Applied Science Advisory Board and been a guest lecturer at Thunderbird School of Global Management, Miami University, and University of Colorado. He is a retired United States Air Force lieutenant colonel.

Josh Brody
CEO, Pronoun

Josh Brody is CEO of Pronoun. He brings over a decade of media and entertainment experience as a successful entrepreneur and operator. He was previously CEO at Vook and a co-founder and CEO at Booklr, a real-time data and analytics platform for the book industry that was acquired by Vook in 2014. Prior to launching Booklr, Josh was the first employee and Director of Operations at Media Rights Capital (MRC), an independent film and television studio backed by Goldman Sachs, AT&T, WPP Group and ABRY Partners. Prior to MRC, Josh was in the international film and packaging group at William Morris Endeavor. Josh received his MA and BA from the University of Chicago and his MBA from Columbia Business School.

Joshua Summers
CEO and Co-Founder, clypd

Joshua is the CEO and Co-Founder of clypd and leads the organization through day-to-day operations, product direction and strategic relationships. Joshua is a hands-on leader with extensive experience building companies from scratch and driving towards revenue. Joshua is also Chief-recruiter, Chief-foodie, Chief-talker and a dad of two great kids.

Justin Wohlstadter
CEO and Founder, Wonder

Justin is the Founder and CEO of Wonder (, a research engine fueled by experts; and a Venture Partner at BOLDStart Ventures, a seed fund in New York City.

Justin co-founded Penny Black and BOLDstart Ventures, where he led or co-led investments in Divide (acquired by Google), GoInstant (acquired by Salesforce), Klout (acquired by Lithium), Rapportive (acquired by LinkedIn), Blaze (acquired by Akamai), ThinkNear (acquired by Telenav), IndieGoGo, LocalResponse, Playhaven, and Yipit. After launching BOLDStart Ventures Justin attended Oxford University, writing his master’s dissertation on how the Internet will affect access to higher education. After Oxford, Justin joined Divide (acquired by Google), a BOLDstart ventures portfolio company in the mobile security space, where he served as the Director of Product Design out of their New York, Hong Kong, and London offices.

Mike Stone
CEO and Co-Founder, MakersKit

Mike is the Co-Founder & CEO of MakersKit. He is passionate about the arts and inspiring creativity in everyone. He volunteered as an art teacher at public schools while running eight previous startups that all successfully exited. MakersKit pairs his passion with his business savvy. In just a year, Mike has lead MakersKit to becoming the leading brand for all things DIY with distribution in over 4,000 retail locations with partners like Urban Outfitters, Nordstrom and West Elm. To continue his charitable endeavors, MakersKit donates an art supply kit to public schools for every kit sold at

Mike was called “Founder of Techstars’ Hottest Startup” by Forbes and previously was awarded the National Leadership Award for Business Excellence from the US Congress.

Mitch Davis
Chairman and CEO, Emergent Payments

Mitch Davis is the Chairman and CEO of Emergent Payments. Named as one of the most influential people in the video game industry by the Wall Street Journal in 2006, Mitch Davis is a digital media pioneer with a long record of entrepreneurial success. As founder, chairman, and CEO of Massive Inc., Davis sparked a revolution in the video game industry with the introduction of the world’s first and largest in-game advertising network, which unlocked new revenue opportunities for publishers while delivering global reach and targeted, high-value impressions for advertisers. At the time of its sale to Microsoft in 2006, Massive’s exclusive network served more than 80 blue chip advertisers including Coke, Toyota, and every Hollywood studio, and served ads in top-selling titles from 40 publishers including EA, Activision, THQ, Take 2, Sony Online Entertainment, Disney, and Vivendi Universal Games.

Other entrepreneurial successes include co-founding Digital Rights, subsequently acquired by Liberty One; as well as co-founding Parcelhouse, an international middleware software developer with clients including FedEx, DHL, and IKEA. During his tenure as Senior Vice President of Encyclopedia Britannica, Davis had P&L responsibility for the and CD Rom business units.

Ray DeMeo
COO, President and Co-Founder, Virsec

Ray is the Co-Founder, President and COO of Virsec. He has 20 years of prior startup Sales, Operations and Global Business Development experience, with key roles at Giganet (acquired by Emulex) and EqualLogic (acquired by Dell). He was later President and CEO at innoPad, which he sold in 2013. Ray has built sales and marketing teams, brand awareness and IT market presence in more than 15 countries.

Ross Shanken
CEO and Founder, Jornaya

Ross Shanken is a digital technology business builder, thought leader, and patent holder who founded Jornaya (originally LeadiD) in 2011 after a 13 year career at TARGUSinfo. In founding Jornaya, Ross’ goal was to build and deploy a technology platform that would create a trusted environment for lead sellers and lead buyers to operate. In that time, the insights that Jornaya has uncovered have had a transformative impact on the way the industry operates and far broader potential than even Ross originally imagined. Ross now spends much of his time collaborating with customers, advisors, and thought leaders to evolve Jornaya’s platform to best meet the needs of the broader digital marketing ecosystem.

Outside of work, Ross likes to run, coach, attend Philly sporting events, and spend time with his family. Ross’ best friend and greatest supporter is his wife of 20 years, with whom he has three children.

Samy Bahra
CTO and Co-Founder, Backtrace

Samy is the CTO and Co-Founder of Backtrace. Prior to this, Samy was a principal engineer at AppNexus, playing a key role in the development of a leading realtime online advertising platform. Prior to his work at AppNexus, he was working on core projects at Message Systems and the George Washington University High Performance Computing Laboratory. Samy is the maintainer of Concurrency Kit, a library that provides a plethora of specialized concurrency primitives, lockless data structures, and other technologies to aid the research, design, and implementation of high-performance concurrent systems. Samy serves on the ACM Practitioners Board.

Veer Gidwaney
CEO and Co-Founder, Maxwell Health

Veer Gidwaney is Chief Executive Officer and Co-Founder at Maxwell Health. Named one of Maclean’s Magazine’s ‘Top 25 Under 30,’ Veer is a proven entrepreneur and innovator whose energy and intelligence have long been devoted to solving the problems of our time. Veer co-founded and served as CEO of DailyFeats, the popular mobile app that motivates and rewards members to improve their health and well-being.

Prior to co-founding DailyFeats, Veer was Director and Co-Founder of Humanity Calls, a fundraising tournament website designed to bring together non-profits, companies and individuals focused on addressing global causes. In 2010, Humanity Calls, in partnership with eBay, ran a successful tournament for the environment that resulted in donations to dozens of top non-profits.

In the midst of completing his degree in business at the University of Western Ontario, Veer also co- founded and served as CEO of Control-F1. An industry leader in Support Automation, Control-F1 served more than 100 customers worldwide, had 50 employees, and raised more than $13 million in venture capital. In December of 2005, Control-F1 was acquired by CA Technologies, one of the world’s largest software companies, exceeding $4 billion in sales. Veer went on to serve as head of sales for one of CA Technologies’ North American business units with more than $75 million in annual revenue, and later served as Executive Advisor to the EVP of Technology and Products.

Veer was also a Director and a primary investor of Neurosilicon, a life science company focused on advancing healthcare research through enabling rapid, non-invasive, targeted depolarization of excitable cells using the company’s novel photoconductive stimulation technology.

Recognizing his success, E&Y named him a finalist for Entrepreneur of the Year Award in 2002. Veer lives in New York City with his wife Nina and their children, son Vayav and daughter Naiya.