MIT Enterprise Forum Pittsburgh is guided by a group of dedicated business executives from a broad spectrum of industries, including finance, IT, law, healthcare and more. Members of our board of directors volunteer their time in order to advance the entrepreneurial community of the Greater Pittsburgh Region.
Chairman John Whitehill is the owner of PMN, Inc. a regional investment banking firm, founded in 1995. PMN, Inc. participates in the financing of local entrepreneurial endeavors. John has an MBA from Cornell University and an MSEC from Carnegie Mellon University, where he was appointed as a visiting scholar in the School of Computer Sciences for 5 years ending in 2009. John co-founded the Center for Appalachian Network Access (CANA), a philanthropic effort to deploy telecommunication and internet technologies in rural and isolated communities. Most recently, CANA is assisting the efforts of Catholic Charities to acculturate refugee populations.
Co-Vice Chairman Dr. John “Jack” Mason is the Director of Entrepreneurial Studies in the Palumbo Donahue School of Business at Duquesne University. He is an executive, consultant, researcher and educator with more than 40 years of technical and management experience in energy/technology businesses. Dr. Mason has a range of business experience including startup, turn-around, organizational restructuring, and performance improvement. His many management positions include having served as president of TENERA, a 350-person, $50 million public firm that provided energy facility engineering, power plant design, safety analysis, and other services to industry clients and the Department of Energy. He has worked within utility, commercial, industrial, academic, as well as system and service provider organizations. His academic background includes a bachelor’s degree from the U.S. Naval Academy, a master’s in management from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Sloan School of Management, and a doctor of science in engineering from MIT. As a Sloan Fellow, he studied with managers and executives from 25 countries, interacted with dozens of Global 500 company executives, and conducted research in France, Germany, Japan and the U.S. He leads the Entrepreneurial Studies Program in curriculum design and delivery, student advising, faculty selection and evaluation, and teaching. In his program leadership role, Dr. Mason maintains linkage to the business community, other A.J. Palumbo disciplines, and the other schools at Duquesne to promote entrepreneurial activity and student opportunities.
Co-Vice Chairman Kit is Associate Director for the Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship at Carnegie Mellon University and Entrepreneur in Residence at Project Olympus, the campus incubator for students and faculty that are interested in commercializing their world class research and innovations. She provides students and faculty start-up advice, business strategy planning, connections to industry experts, advisors and the business community. Needham is a technical advisor to BlueTree Allied Angels and serves on the Screening Committee. She is an Advisory Board member of Chatham University’s Center for Women’s Entrepreneurship and teaches in their MBA program. She also provides consulting services to promote economic growth to Chambers of Commerce, individual entrepreneurs and non-profit organizations.
Co-Vice Chairman Lou Camerlengo is President/Co-Founder of Five Star Development, Inc. Since 1997, Five Star has provided custom training design and technology development services to a wide range of corporate, higher education, government, and nonprofit clients. INC Magazine twice ranked Five Star as an INC 5000 company. Five Star has also been named a Top 100 Best Workplaces in Pennsylvania, was twice named as a Best Places to Work in Southwestern Pennsylvania, and has appeared on the Pittsburgh Business Times’ Top 100 list four times. Lou is a mock interviewer for the Semper Fi Wounded Warriors program and has served on the Workforce Development Committee of Allegheny Conference of Community Development. He has been to the White House multiple times as a participant in small business round tables hosted by Business Forward and the Small Business Majority. Lou holds a B.A. in Communications Studies with a minor in British history from the SUNY at Oswego. He and his wife, Renee, Assistant Dean of Student Affairs at CMU, have established a scholarship fund at SUNY Oswego to support student internships and career development programs. Lou also is a graduate of the Entrepreneurial Management and Technology Commercialization programs at the Carnegie Mellon Graduate School of Industrial Administration.
Treasurer Chuck Oshurak is a Senior Audit Manager for Schneider Downs & Co., Inc., one of the 60 largest public accounting firms in the United States and fourth largest in Western Pennsylvania. Since 2007, he has provided the firm with a unique blend of practice expertise, including experience working with national and local SEC companies, large private companies and numerous non-profit organizations. In addition to his public accounting experience in numerous industries, Oshurak also plays an important role internally at Schneider Downs, serving the firm on a number of technical and service committees. He is a member of the firm’s Non-profit Services group, as well as its SEC industry group, and is a contributor to the Schneider Downs Insights blog. Oshurak is a graduate of Indiana University of Pennsylvania and a member of the American and Pennsylvania Institutes of Certified Public Accountants. He came to Schneider Downs after spending more than eight years at a national accounting firm.
Secretary Steve Cherin is the owner of Cherin Law Offices P.C. since April 2013. Prior to that, Steve was a shareholder of Strassburger McKenna Gutnick & Gefsky, where he concentrated his practice in business law and served as the chair of the corporate transactions group. Before that, Steve was a shareholder of Gefsky and Lehman, P.C., where he served as the firm’s managing partner. Steve started his legal career with Buchanan Ingersoll, P.C., as a member of its business and tax groups. Steve’s experience with mergers and acquisitions and private equity investments allows him to better understand and advise clients on business structuring at formation; through various financing arrangements, and during the ups and downs faced by every business. This representation includes flexible billing arrangements that allow for hands-on legal representation with a limited budget. Steve has assisted with the formation and growth of businesses in software, medical services, professional services, medical devises, robotics, real estate, manufacturing, on-line and traditional retail, as well as forming and guiding non-profit organizations. Steve currently represents private equity groups, executives and developing and mature companies in a variety of industries, including engineering, medical devices and services, robotics and software. Many of these clients have relied on Steve through more than one of their business ventures and over the course of more than a decade. He serves on the Board of Directors of the MIT Enterprise Forum of Pittsburgh and its organizing committee for the annual Innovations in Energy event. He has served on the Three Rivers Venture Fair “Boot Camp” committee, coaching presenting companies to sharpen their presentations. He served as President of his condominium association, as well as having served as Vice President on the Board of Edgewood County Club. For more than a decade, Steve served as a board chairman of the Carnegie Mellon University’s Tepper School Management Game. He also was a coach for the EnterPrize Business Plan Competition, as well as participating as a judge in a number of business plan competitions. Steve graduated with honors from Carnegie Mellon University as its only Small Business Management major. Following Carnegie Mellon, Steve graduated with honors from the Cornell School of Law, where he served on the board and was published in the Cornell Law Review.
Membership Committee Chair Mike Annichine has more than 20 years’ experience developing local and national businesses. He is the CEO of C-leveled, a provider of small business consulting services, with Executives as a Service™, and subscription-based software that position businesses to efficiently navigate in evolving market landscapes. C-leveled helps keep businesses on track, focused and growing; C-leveled caters to rapidly growing business needs from startups to business exit strategies. C-leveled was recognized as 12th on the Top 100 Fastest Growing Companies List in Pittsburgh by the Pittsburgh Business Times, and a finalist for the startup of the year award given by the Pittsburgh Technology Council in 2013. Prior to C-leveled he served as CEO for FlyerCity Media, an interactive media and entertainment provider that delivers a multi-dimensional approach to mobile marketing. They developed a comprehensive digital marketing strategy that caters to customers on the move thru interactive mobile applications, tailored specifically to the individual needs of their consumers. He recently served as the Director of Investment Programs for the Pittsburgh Life Sciences Greenhouse, a nationally-recognized investment firm committed to innovate and build successful life sciences companies. PLSG has a portfolio of companies with over $1 billion in market valuation and is a tireless advocate in the effort to attract companies and capital investments to western Pennsylvania’s life sciences industry. As western Pennsylvania’s only investment agency with a pure life sciences focus, PLSG is in the best position to help take life sciences innovations to market. PLSG combines a deep knowledge of global industry trends, national networks and corporate collaborations to identify worthy investment opportunities within our region’s industry. In 1997 he founded CFS Home Loans, Inc. Annichine’s strong leadership, vision and passion for customer satisfaction are responsible for CFS transforming from a modest two-person shop to a full-scale mortgage company with 59 employees and $200 million in annual loan volume. In 2006 he headed the acquisition of Marathon mortgage and in 2007 completed a joint venture with a national title company, and in 2009 he Merged CFS with First Choice Bank to develop a national lending platform. His innovative approach to attracting talent and developing business continues to keep First Choice Bank ahead of the competition. Annichine’s previous experience includes executive sales with Amresco Residential Mortgage, based in Orange County, California. Here, with his strong sales and communications skills he quickly became one of the company’s top performers. He gained retail experience as a loan officer for United Companies Lending Corporation. Annichine was ranked nationally as one of the top 10 loan officers for loan volume and loan performance. He earned dual Bachelor of Science degrees in industrial management and economics from Carnegie Mellon University, and was accepted into the Carnegie Mellon Graduate School of Industrial Administration. He has the education and the experience and his track record of successful outside the box thinking that led to the development of BNM, ABLE Settlement, and Credit Insight under the CFS brand is a testament to his ability to find ways to add value beyond what the competition offers. Annichine is also a member of the Three Rivers Entrepreneurs and served as a coach, mentoring non-profit leadership, for the Pittsburgh Social Venture Partnership’s fast pitch event. Annichine is a married father of four and sits on several local boards including the Pittsburgh Charity Classic, Autism Center of Pittsburgh (ACP), and the Enterprise Forum Pittsburgh (MIT); which supports multiple local entrepreneurs and helps promote an environment that enables success by bringing together talent and ideas with resources that can help them grow. He is committed to helping small companies and non-profits raise money and awareness locally to enhance our Pittsburgh Community.
Dan Bates, an award-winning writer and editor, is the Strategic Relations Manager in the University of Pittsburgh’s Office of Technology Management. The office facilitates the commercialization of innovations from University faculty, staff and students. Bates oversees marketing communications, commercialization education for faculty, outreach and other strategic relations efforts there. He joined Pitt in 2002, after 18 years in the media as a writer and editor in Pittsburgh and Boston. Prior to Pitt, Bates served almost eight years as editor of SBN Magazine, whose mission was to motivate, educate and inspire entrepreneurially-minded senior executives. Previously, he was a reporter for the Pittsburgh Business Times.
Marta’s background is an eclectic mix of technology and marketing, and she considers herself fluent in translating “techie” to English and vice-versa. A native Pittsburgher, she has a B.S. in Electrical & Computer Engineering and an M.B.A both from Carnegie Mellon University, and aside from a short stint in Tokyo, Japan has rooted herself in the hometown she loves. After completing her MBA, she spent several years in software product development and management before coming back to eCommerce to run the merchandising and marketing departments for an Internet Retailer Top 500 e-tailer, then landed at WESCO Distribution to create their new eCommerce department including hardware & software, pricing strategies, customer service, and digital marketing. She serves as an adviser and mentor to several local startups, and enjoys helping to grow the local startup community through the Pittsburgh Technology Meetup, a startup networking group she founded in 2010.
Jerry Dunlap is a senior sales executive and sales management consultant with more than 25 years of experience selling technology, enterprise software and business services to national and global companies utilizing consultative selling expertise. He has also worked in start-up environments, one leading to a successful IPO with sales growth from $1M to over $200M within 6 years.
Christopher brings forward extensive executive leadership experience within bootstrap start-ups and Fortune 1000s in award-winning branding, business development, marketing, angel investment and management, to his role on the Board.
Christopher is Vice President at Savvior. Additionally, Christopher is Partner/Chief Marketing Officer of RKNC Investment Club, focused on the NASDAQ options market, Chairman of Membership for BlueTree Allied Angels. Christopher is also Host of “Coffee With…™”. Prior to joining Savvior, Christopher held senior roles at industry leaders including iGATE, Mastech, Truefit and PNC Financial Services Group. Christopher was a co-founder of CRM start-up Blue Hammock, where he helped lead a $1.5M initial angel fundraising round, transform from start-up into a recognized industry leader, and later sell off via acquisition. Christopher has been a multi-million dollar sales producer in each of his sales leadership capacities, and brands under his auspices have been granted the awards ‘2013 Tech50 Finalist’, ‘2012 Tech50 New Media Company of the Year’, ‘2013 Pacesetter’,’2007 Thought Leader of the Year’, ‘Emerging Market Leader’, and the ’2008 Relationship of the Year’. Christopher is also a former member of the Board of Directors of the American Marketing Association, is a published writer and regular speaker, mentor, judge, and panelist at industry events and universities. He holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Political Science from Duquesne University.
Shawn Kelly is a Senior Systems Scientist at Carnegie Mellon University, a medical device consultant, and the Director of Electrical Engineering at Bionic Eye Technologies, a startup medical device company developing a retinal prosthesis for the blind. He has researched mechanical properties of cartilage and electrical properties of brain tissue at MIT and at the University of Pittsburgh, and worked as a microwave frequency circuit test engineer at M/A-Com. He has been working with the Boston Retinal Implant Project since 1996, where he has developed retinal stimulator circuits and wireless power and data telemetry circuits, and manages the electrical systems designs for the retinal implant. At CMU, Dr. Kelly directs the Neural Devices Engineering Laboratory, which is developing novel circuits for neural stimulation as well as wireless telemetry systems for medical devices. He has a general interest in implantable medical devices, especially neural stimulators, and focuses on circuit design, power and data telemetry, and power management. He is interested in spinning off more Pittsburgh companies from his work in the future. Shawn received his S.B., M.Eng., and Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from MIT, with undergraduate minors in Biomedical Engineering and in Biology.
Mike Malloy, Ph.D., grew up in Pittsburgh, but lived and worked extensively throughout Latin America and Europe. He graduated Summa Cum Laude, Phi Beta Kappa, from the University of Pittsburgh in 1988 and went to Indiana University for graduate school, receiving two Masters Degrees and a Doctorate Degree in International Political Economy. The consistent theme of Dr. Malloy’s professional career is his passion and intense interest in working to empower people to live a life of meaning, as they define it, in today’s fast paced and changing world. Michael began his career as a professor of international political economy, teaching in Barcelona, Indiana, and Pittsburgh before becoming the Associate Director of the Center for West European Studies and the European Union Center at the University of Pittsburgh. In 1999 he left academia and became a partner in a telecommunications company Warner Telecomm. As the President, he developed its capabilities as a full service telecommunications company active both nationally and internationally. During the late 1990s Michael was also involved in a web site development and hosting company during these early stages of the World Wide Web. This was the genesis for his interest in ICT (Information and Communications Technology). Through these activities he came to realize his passion for helping US businesses to use ICT services effectively to grow in a global, Internet, marketplace – to become globally competitive. Determined to focus all of his time and efforts to this end, he founded IntellaCore in 2004. As the CEO, he led IntellaCore to help companies become globally competitive by including a global perspective into their business strategy. In 2010 Business Beyond Borders (BBB) was launched as a virtual, global network of business advisors oriented around a Code Of Ethics and Michael’s passion to provide the practical help people need to live an empowered life of meaning. Business Beyond Borders provides financial and business strategies to the leadership of closely-held companies to help them achieve their financial objectives, not only for the company but for the people involved. It’s about helping leadership to make decisive decisions. Put them in a positive posture to manage change confidently, take decisive action, and enjoy life’s journey. This in turn creates competitive companies that are solid, growing the economy, and creating good jobs. In 2010 Michael was also recruited to Wells Fargo Advisors in order to bring to its local presence his corporate consulting background, his experience in internationalizing companies, and his understanding of how international business works. Licensed in securities and insurance, since 2013 Dr. Malloy now works with Luttner Financial Group, founded in 1969, to integrate their financial strategy and wealth management expertise with BBB’s business consultancy. Dr. Malloy continues to teach Global Business at the university level at Chatham University. He Chairs the Board at GlobalPittsburgh to lead its mission to connect the region internationally. He serves on the board of MIT Enterprise Forum, was appointed by the US Secretary of Commerce to its District Export Council where he was chair of the regional DEC, and served as National Vice-Chair. Dr. Malloy was appointed a Fellow and remains an Accredited Associate of the Institute for Independent Business (an international accreditation body of business advisors). He is active several initiatives to mentor students, entrepreneurs, and to assist disadvantaged communities in Western Pennsylvania. Dr. Malloy married Marie in France in 1987. Their dual-nationality family is full bilingual and multi-cultural with a consistent emphasis that we live in a globalized, internet driven world. Their twin sons where born in Barcelona in 1993 and are currently at McGill University in Montreal, Canada.
Programming Committee Chair As an Executive in Residence with Innovation Works, McDaniel works with the management teams of start-up, clean energy and manufacturing technology companies to identify and to address critical business issues including intellectual property creation and protection, international product development, marketing, sales, fundraising, management recruitment and growth planning. Some of these high potential enterprises become members of the Innovation Works investment portfolio. For a portfolio company, Jeffrey provides mentoring and network access, and serves as an observer on the board of directors. McDaniel has 15 years of experience in innovation, corporate strategy, manufacturing and energy technologies, and operations – in both early stage and Fortune 500 companies. Prior to joining Innovation Works, he was in charge of business development and strategy for the emerging technology R&D portfolio for Westinghouse Electric Company, developing clean energy solutions and products, and providing organizational leadership for technology teams. He also led the global implementation of new Sustainability technology and innovation design processes. Before joining Westinghouse, McDaniel held marketing, strategy, and development roles at the Ex One Company, a global manufacturing technology incubator headquartered in western Pennsylvania. He led the successful commercialization of Imagen, LLC, a manufacturer of dental implant and bio-medical devices through 3D printing, becoming that startup’s General Manager and Vice President. Previously, McDaniel was an associate at Reed Smith, LLP, where he worked in the law firm’s corporate division and gained M&A, partnership and organizational experience, supporting privately-held and pre- and post-IPO clients. McDaniel served in the United States Navy as a Surface Warfare Officer where he led sailors in engineering and combat systems roles, as well as joint operations and intelligence teams in the U.S. and throughout Central and South America. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the United States Naval Academy and a JD from the University of Pittsburgh School of Law.
Reed McManigle is the Senior Manager of Business Development and Licensing at the Center for Technology Transfer & Enterprise Creation, Carnegie Mellon University. Reed previously served as the Programming Committee Chair for the MIT Enterprise Forum Pittsburgh.
Patrick is Corporate Counsel at ServiceLink, a subsidiary of Fidelity National Financial, in Moon Township, where he counsels various lines of business. Previously, he was a Senior Attorney at the Pittsburgh law firm of Houston Harbaugh, where he structured, negotiated and closed mergers, acquisitions and reorganizations. In addition, Mr. Mondi served as corporate counsel for regional and national privately-held companies. In addition to his work with the MIT Enterprise Forum, Mr. Mondi volunteers with Pittsburgh’s SCORE chapter as a business counselor to emerging small businesses. He also serves on the board of a Minneapolis-based privately-held search fund. In addition, Mr. Mondi is a captain in the U.S. Army reserves and is currently trial counsel to the 300th Military Police Brigade in Detroit, Michigan.
Governance and Nominating Committee Chair Jean-Luc Park is one of the founding partners of Ferrum Capital, a group focused on facilitating investment for hotels and retail developments. He has been a consultant to the International Finance Corporation (IFC), part of the World Bank Group, where he was researching the IFC’s job creation activity through their global private equity investments. He has been a consultant to the board of Calvert Social Funds, a publicly traded mutual fund, running their private equity and venture capital activities in the Special Equities program. During that time he was responsible for over $50 mil in investments in about 30 funds and 30 direct investments. Mr. Park began his investment career at Draper Triangle Ventures and Lycos Ventures in Pittsburgh during the dot-com era in 1999. He is a graduate of Carnegie Mellon University (B.S. Math/Computer Science 1994, B.A. Economics 1994, MBA 1998) Mr. Park has been the executive chair of the MIT Enterprise Forum of Washington D.C. and Baltimore. He has been a member of the Forum since 2002. He has also been very active with the Carnegie Mellon Alumni association, having helped restart the Washington D.C. chapter of the Tepper Alumni program.
Mr. Seitam is a Partner at C-Leveled, a provider of small business consulting services, with Executives as a Service™, and subscription-based software that position businesses to efficiently navigate in evolving market landscapes. C-leveled helps keep businesses on track, focused and growing; C-leveled caters to rapidly growing business needs from startups to business exit strategies. Seitam has worked in a variety of technology startups over the course of his career. He has held several C-level leadership positions (CEO, COO, CFO) in h/w and s/w companies in Pittsburgh and Atlanta. He has worked in multiple industries that include business analytics, professional services, embedded software for consumer products, healthcare IT, fabless semiconductors, wired and wireless broadband systems and storage s/w. He has co-founded three companies.
Raul Valdes-Perez co-founded OnlyBoth in March 2014 and is CEO. He co-founded Vivisimo in 2000, a search software company that provided enterprise products and web-based consumer services, serving as its CEO for nine years and as Chairman for 12 until its acquisition in 2012 by IBM. He was named a 2007 Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year for the North Central Region and the 2013 Outstanding Entrepreneur of the Year by the Pittsburgh Venture Capital Association. Earlier, he was on the Carnegie Mellon computer science faculty. He received seven research grants from the National Science Foundation and published 50 journal articles and book chapters in computer, natural, and social science. He received a computer science PhD from Carnegie Mellon in 1991, where his advisor was the Nobel Laureate Herbert A. Simon, and B.S. and M.S. degrees in information engineering from the University of Illinois at Chicago. Raul authored the book Advice is for Winners: How to Get Advice for Better Decisions in Life and Work in late 2012, and is on several company and non-profit boards.
Sponsorship Committee Chair Craig Waller is Of Counsel in the Pittsburgh office of Gordon & Rees, LLP and a member of the Intellectual Property Practice Group. He has more than a decade of experience directly assisting clients across a broad spectrum of mechanical, electro-mechanical and software-related IP including related design work. Waller has worked in several law firm contexts, including globally recognized firms and large IP boutique environments, as well as working directly with executives at large international public corporations and start-up companies. Waller handles a full range of intellectual property services, including:
He was the keynote speaker for the Graduate and Adult Degree Completion program at Geneva College, delivering the 2013 Commencement Speech. Waller most recently served as Chairman of the Board for the MIT Enterprise Forum Pittsburgh from 2011-2013.
The MIT Enterprise Forum’s mission is to inform, connect, and coach entrepreneurs—enabling them to rapidly transform ideas into world-changing companies. We are a network of local organizations, and open to the world.
Our vision is to build a better world by accelerating the creation and growth of world-class companies right here in Pittsburgh.