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Entrepreneurial Outlook: Manufacturing 2020

Polsky Center’s popular Entrepreneurial Outlook is back with a new six-part event series. In Manufacturing 2020, a panel of experts in the field of manufacturing will discuss the state of the industry in 2020 and where they see opportunities for entrepreneurship and innovation within the field. Attendees will have the opportunity to network with panelists after the session. Breakfast will be provided, and space is limited.

Featured speakers include:

  • Chandra Brown, MxD, CEO — Chandra is the CEO of MxD, an innovation center that equips U.S. factories with the digital tools and expertise they need to begin building every part better than the last. Before joining MxD, Chandra was the CEO and founder of Brown Executive Strategies, a strategic consulting firm focused on helping small businesses worldwide increase their competitiveness. She was previously president of Green Endeavor, Inc., a startup that helped industries replace harmful chemicals with more effective, affordable, and greener alternatives. Before Green Endeavor, she was appointed by President Obama to serve as the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Manufacturing in the U.S. Department of Commerce, where she promoted U.S. businesses worldwide and worked to remove trade barriers.
  • David Johnson, MBA ’07, Abraxas Group, Founder & Managing Partner — David is Founder and Managing Partner of Abraxas Group, a boutique advisory firm focused on providing transformational leadership to middle market companies in transition. Over the course of his career, David has served as financial advisor and interim executive to dozens of middle market companies.
  • Melissa Lederer, mHUB Chicago, Chief Experience Officer — Melissa is Chief Experience Officer at mHUB, the nation’s largest and fastest-growing innovation center focused on physical product development and manufacturing. Prior to her years focused on driving civic entrepreneurship, Melissa served as the SVP of marketing for Q Interactive (formerly CoolSavings) where she oversaw all marketing, communications and creative functions and served on the company’s senior leadership team.
  • Mark O’Halloran, MBA ’93, Together Chicago, Director of Economic Development — Mark is the CFO & Director of Economic Development at Together Chicago where he leads initiatives aimed at expanding Chicago’s advanced manufacturing industrial base, supply-chain localization, African American home ownership, and workforce development for technical careers. Mark holds an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.
  • Gian Ricco, Stout Risius Ross Advisors, Managing Director, Investment Banking — Gian is a Managing Director in the Investment Banking Group at Stout Risius Ross Advisors. In that capacity, he focuses on merger and acquisition advisory, institutional private placements of debt and equity, and strategic consulting. Prior to joining Stout, Gian was a Vice President at a boutique investment bank in Chicago, where he advised numerous middle market businesses in mergers and acquisitions and capital raising mandates.
  • Moderated by Elizabeth Koprucki, Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, Assistant Director, Fab Lab and Design

If you like this event, be sure to check out all the events in our Entrepreneurial Outlook 2020 series:

This series is made possible with generous support from Loeb & Loeb and Capital One.

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