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Meet the Team

Meet the Team

The Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation team is paving the way for Chicago’s entrepreneurial spirit. Housed on a collaborative campus, we are a group of committed professionals dedicated to promoting and supporting students, faculty, staff, alumni, researchers and local entrepreneurs as they navigate the complex process of creating and growing a startup. To see a full list of Polsky Council members, click here. For general inquiries, questions, and feedback about the Polsky Center, please contact us at polsky@uchicago.edu.

Polsky Exchange

Kristin BarrettKristin Barrett
Kristin Barrett

Kristin Barrett

Senior Director

1452 East 53rd Street, 2nd floor
Chicago, IL 60615
773-834-5641

As Senior Director at University of Chicago’s Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, Kristin leads the University’s 34,000 square foot coworking space and educational content for entrepreneurs looking to scale their businesses.

Prior to the Polsky Center, Kristin was vice president of 1871, one of the nation’s largest startup hubs, and led educational content for the organization. Kristin was the COO of Excelerate Labs (now Techstars Chicago), a top-ranked technology startup accelerator, and worked with startups and early-stage investments through Hyde Park Angels.

Kristin started in entrepreneurship while working on new ventures and corporate strategy for Redbox, participating in the company’s growth from 6,000 locations to more than 30,000. She has also worked in management consulting with A.T. Kearney, touching a variety of industries including pharmacy, logistics, and agricultural goods.

Kristin earned an MBA with Honors at University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business and her BS in journalism and economics from Northwestern University.

Steph Avalos-BockSteph Avalos-Bock
Steph Avalos-Bock

Steph Avalos-Bock

Assistant Director, Educational Programming

1452 East 53rd Street, 2nd floor
Chicago, IL 60615
773-834-5168

Steph Avalos-Bock is a UChicago alumna and hardware entrepreneur. At the Polsky Exchange, she is responsible for the educational workshops and events and the mentorship program. She also runs the Polsky Incubator, a program for ambitious startups working full-time out of the Polsky Exchange. Steph offers weekly office hours to advise entrepreneurs on all aspects of starting a startup, from ideas to testing and building products.

Lucila CardonaLucila Cardona
Lucila Cardona

Lucila Cardona

Program Manager, Events & Membership

University of Chicago
1452 E. 53rd St., 2nd floor
Chicago, IL 60615
O: 773-795-0209

Lucila oversees events and membership at the Polsky Exchange. She has previous experience managing a Canadian football team and working in finance at PepsiCo in Mexico.

Cindy DomeckiCindy Domecki
Cindy Domecki

Cindy Domecki

Receptionist

1452 East 53rd Street, 2nd floor
Chicago, IL 60615
773-795-0075

Cindy Domecki is responsible for all visitors’ first impressions of the Polsky Exchange both in person and through telephone. Additionally she assists with various administrative tasks.

Elizabeth KopruckiElizabeth Koprucki
Elizabeth Koprucki

Elizabeth Koprucki

Assistant Director, Fab Lab and Design

1452 E. 53rd St.
Chicago, IL 60615
773-795-0558

Elizabeth Koprucki manages the Polsky Center’s Fab Lab where she works with entrepreneurs and researchers to create prototypes. She oversees the Fab Lab’s programming and connects Polsky Exchange members with the hardware and software resources and expertise they need.

Danielle MooreDanielle Moore
Danielle Moore

Danielle Moore

Receptionist

1452 East 53rd Street, 2nd floor
Chicago, IL 60615
773-834-5168

Danielle Moore is responsible for all visitors’ first impressions of the Polsky Exchange both in person and through telephone inquiries regarding membership. Additionally she assists with various administrative task.

Nick NeuNick Neu
Nick Neu

Nick Neu

Operations Manager

1452 East 53rd St
Chicago, IL 60615
773-702-2470

nneu@uchicago.edu

 

Nick joined the University in March 2014 as a member of Facilities Services, quickly establishing himself as a reliable point of contact and willing collaborator within the Inventory Team. He oversees all physical aspects of the Polsky Exchange and manages the building’s reception team, security officers, and porters.
Christopher SchneiderChristopher Schneider
Christopher Schneider

Christopher Schneider

IT Support Specialist

1452 E. 53rd St., 2nd floor
Chicago, IL 60615

cschneider1@uchicago.edu

Christopher Schneider is the IT Support Specialist for the Polsky TechBar, which is run in partnership with UChicago ITServices to offer technical support to Polsky members, guests, and staff. His responsibilities include assisting with common hardware and software problems, basic audio/visual support, and providing equipment for loan.

Cathy Taylor
Cathy Taylor

Cathy Taylor

Receptionist

1452 East 53rd Street, 2nd floor
Chicago, IL 60615
773-834-5168

Cathy Taylor brings 8 years of hospitality experience to the Polsky Exchange. Her primary duties include ensuring members and guest feel welcomed, managing the front desk, assisting colleagues with various administrative tasks, and processing membership applications.