Alumni New Venture Challenge (ANVC)

Alumni New Venture Challenge (ANVC)

2023 Regional Co-Chairs

The Alumni NVC will operate globally with dedicated regional efforts and participation in the five key geographies with alumni co-chairs spearheading the local regional efforts. University of Chicago alumni have been selected by Polsky Center staff and faculty to lead the ANVC program in their respective region. These alumni are individuals who are passionate about entrepreneurship, have demonstrated success in leadership roles, and expressed interest in working alongside the Polsky Center in supporting alumni venture development.

Midwest Co-Chairs

Amalesh Sanku, MBA ’99

Amalesh Sanku, MBA ’99

President, Sagertech Communications

View Bio

Amalesh Sanku, MBA ’99

President, Sagertech Communications

Amalesh Sanku is currently President & CEO at Sagertech Communications – a strategic marketing consulting company. He leads strategy and marketing engagements for telecommunications and medical technology companies. He has identified potential acquisition targets, negotiated strategic global alliances, evaluated M&A prospects, and led due diligence teams for organic and inorganic growth and for portfolio management process both within and across business units at several companies.

Amalesh has worked at or partnered with some of the top technology companies in US such as Sprint, AT&T Bell Laboratories, Lucent technologies, Ciena, E.F. Johnson and Mpower communication. He has extensive experience in market intelligence, competitive positioning, channel management, creating value propositions, and pricing and brand strategy.

Amalesh currently serves as a Director and an Officer on the Board of Gateway Foundation- a $110M non-profit drug and alcohol addiction counseling service. He serves on the Board of the Chicago Booth Angels Network(CBAN) of Chicago. He also serves as a mid-market Committee member of the Professional Directors Association (PDA) Chicago Chapter.

Amalesh has an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of business, an M.S. in Computer Science from Oklahoma State University, and a B. Engineering in Electronics and Communications from University of Madras, India. He holds a US Patent in multimedia performance of open systems.

Mary Beth Arzac

Mary Beth Arzac

Principal Consultant and Owner, MKT Consulting LLC

View Bio

Mary Beth Arzac

Principal Consultant and Owner, MKT Consulting LLC

Mary Beth has over 25 years of experience within the medical industry with a focus on sales and marketing. Mary Beth started her career holding multiple roles at Baxter Healthcare and Medtronic. In 2004, she founded MKT Consulting LLC, an integrated agency that specializes in marketing, strategy, analytics and project management solutions serving diagnostic, biopharmaceutical, medical-device, GPO’s, and informatics companies. Mary Beth is an active and passionate member of the Chicago healthcare start-up community and has worked with over 30 startups over the past five years. She currently serves as an active Advisor to Inference Analytics and NeuroPath and acts as a lead to the C2MP Program through MATTER Health Mentor Network. Mary Beth also serves as a Co-President to the District 113 Education Foundation that supports innovation in the public high schools within her community.

Mary Beth earned an MBA in Marketing and Economics from the University of Chicago and also holds a BA in Behavior Sciences with general honors from the University of Chicago.

Ryota Sekine

Ryota Sekine

President, Radical Frontiers

View Bio

Ryota Sekine

President, Radical Frontiers

Ryota Sekine is a startup founder based in Chicago. When he was an undergraduate student at the University of Chicago, he cofounded Cubii, a fitness brand for baby boomers & beyond. After the business was acquired in late 2020, he has been mentoring early-stage founders, helping brainstorm their “different” that would give them a shot at being positioned in the 1% of their niches. He is currently experimenting with concepts such as space tech, web3/alt gov and bioengineering for his next venture. He graduated from the College in 2013 with a degree in Biology. Ryota enjoys sharing Japanese culture, and is a dedicated member of the U.S.-Japan Council and TOMODACHI Initiative.

Zoe Quan, PhD

Zoe Quan, PhD

CEO, Qingchu Thinking, LLC

View Bio

Zoe Quan, PhD

CEO, Qingchu Thinking, LLC

Dr. Quan’s industry experience  includes telecommunications, IT, and bio/nanotechnology. She has had extensive business experience in Asia, Europe, and North America, including expatriate assignments in Hong Kong, France, and Canada. She has held senior leadership positions with large multinationals as well as entrepreneurial ventures, and is skilled at all aspects of product management, including strategy, product development, business plan development and execution, and P&L responsibility.

Dr. Quan served as Vice President, Operations for Fio Corporation, a nanobiotechnology start-up developing a point-of-care rapid diagnostics system. She led new products and business development as Senior Vice President of Fujitsu Business Communication Systems, a $150 million provider of enterprise network solutions. Zoe was also an executive with various communications infrastructure businesses at Lucent Technologies, in global product, market, and corporate development. She started her career in R&D with Bell Laboratories, co-authoring two telecommunications patents.

As president of Qingchu Thinking, LLC, she translates between the languages of business and technology by combining strategy, international business, and assessing technologies for their growth potential. With her, companies identify the right problems to be solved, begin to see the patterns among seemingly unrelated pieces of information, translate vision into executable strategies, and put in place the processes and discipline to enable implementation.

 

Dr. Quan holds an AB in Applied Mathematics from Harvard University and a PhD in Biophysics and Theoretical Biology from the University of Chicago.

West Coast Co-Chairs

Nancy Hayes, MBA ’80

Nancy Hayes, MBA ’80

Principal, NKH Group

View Bio

Nancy Hayes, MBA ’80

Principal, NKH Group

Nancy Hayes is a current active angel investor who serves as a mentor to women entrepreneurs and founders of color. She also advises corporate and nonprofit executives in management and leadership topics.

Nancy was a senior executive of the IBM Corporation for almost 20 years, CEO of two social services nonprofit organizations, Dean of the College of Business at San Francisco State University, CFO of that university, cofounder of a rewards-based crowdfunding site and Managing Director of Golden Seeds angel group Silicon Valley chapter.

Nancy has an MBA from the University of Chicago and lives in San Francisco.

 

Parag Beeraka, MBA ’15

Parag Beeraka, MBA ’15

Head of Computer Vision and Smart Camera Business at Arm

View Bio

Parag Beeraka, MBA ’15

Head of Computer Vision and Smart Camera Business at Arm

Patrick Ip, AB ’13

Patrick Ip, AB ’13

VP of Product Marketing, Fuel Cycle

View Bio

Patrick Ip, AB ’13

VP of Product Marketing, Fuel Cycle

Patrick is an ex-Googler and 2x CEO and Co-Founder of two venture-backed start-ups. He’s been featured on Forbes 30 Under 30 2020, and twice nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize (2015, 2016). Prior, Patrick was the CEO of Catalog, which raised $3.1M to help brands use software to seamlessly design and order visual content.  

East Coast Co-Chairs

Cindy Machles, MBA ’82

Cindy Machles, MBA ’82

Cofounder and CEO, Glue

View Bio

Cindy Machles, MBA ’82

Cofounder and CEO, Glue

Cindy Machles is the co-founder and CEO of Glue, which has been recognized as a top 20 NYC agency in both advertising and public relations since 2015. Before launching Glue, Cindy started and led healthcare-focused branding and advertising organizations for WPP and held product management roles at both Johnson & Johnson and Clorox. Cindy is also a founding steering committee member of the Chicago Booth Angels Network in NYC and an alumni board member locally as well. Cindy graduated from Chicago Booth in 1982.

Dave Weiner, MBA ’01

Dave Weiner, MBA ’01

COO and CFO, VirtualAPT

View Bio

Dave Weiner, MBA ’01

COO and CFO, VirtualAPT

Dave Weiner is the COO and CFO of VirtualAPT, which uses proprietary, autonomous robots to create interactive, 360° tours which faithfully recreate in-person experiences. Dave is also an investor in and advisor to early-stage consumer/retail-technology companies, including as a committee member of the Chicago Booth Angels Network of New York. Previously, Dave was Deutsche Bank’s lead consumer discretionary global brand analyst within equity research. Dave holds an MBA from the University of Chicago (Booth) and a BA from the University of Illinois.

Hernando Bunuan, MBA ’07

Hernando Bunuan, MBA ’07

Founder and Managing Partner, Z2Sixty Ventures

View Bio

Hernando Bunuan, MBA ’07

Founder and Managing Partner, Z2Sixty Ventures

Hernando Bunuan, MBA ’07, is the Founder and Managing Partner of Z2Sixty Ventures, a US venture capital firm focused on pre-seed to Series A investments. He has over 20 years experience spanning investing (venture capital, angel and public equities) and investment banking (M&A and capital raising) in the US and Europe. Hernando has an MBA from Chicago Booth and Bachelor’s from Washington University.

Hernando is an active alumni leader at Chicago Booth. He previously led the UK Alumni Club as President for seven years and organized events with Fortune 500 executives and start-ups founders. In 2018 he chaired the inaugural Chicago Booth Alumni Forum in London that featured over 40 global C-suite executives and thought leaders.

Anka Twum-Baah, AB, MBA

Anka Twum-Baah, AB, MBA

Chief Marketing Officer, Chief Outsiders

View Bio

Anka Twum-Baah, AB, MBA

Chief Marketing Officer, Chief Outsiders

Ms. Twum-Baah brings over 20 years of experience leading high-impact initiatives and global teams with expertise in integrated marketing, loyalty, customer experience, lead generation, go-to-market, account management, customer acquisition, digital, CRM, insights, enterprise solutions, product development, and strategic alliances. She has broad experience across tech, telecom, payments, retail, customer loyalty, e-commerce, travel and lifestyle industries.Over the course of her career, she has worked with Fortune 500 companies such as Microsoft, Amazon, Marriott International and American Express within Europe, Asia, Africa and the Middle East. In addition, she coaches start-ups and early stage ventures around the world.She earned a MBA from The University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business where she was a Rath Foundation Merit Scholar and completed a joint program in Economics and International Business with the London School of Economics and Political Science. She holds an AB from the University of Chicago.

Latin America Co-Chairs

Kristin Barrett, MBA ’12

Kristin Barrett, MBA ’12

COO and Director, Collective Academy

View Bio

Kristin Barrett, MBA ’12

COO and Director, Collective Academy

Kristin Barrett is the COO and Director of Enterprise Learning for Collective Academy, a Mexico City-based education startup. Prior to Collective Academy, Kristin served as COO for the University of Chicago’s Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation. There, she operated the University’s incubator and prototyping lab, launched Polsky’s fintech program, and sustained the Polsky Center’s growth to a team of more than 50.

Kristin has also served as vice president of 1871, one of the largest startup hubs, and the COO of Techstars Chicago. She worked on new ventures and corporate strategy for Redbox and started her career in management consulting at Kearney.

Kristin earned her MBA with Honors at University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business and her BS in journalism and economics from Northwestern University. In her free time, she’s working on her Spanish and wrangling twin toddlers.

Alex Liuzzi, AB ’07

Alex Liuzzi, AB ’07

Cofounder and CSO, Remessa Online

View Bio

Alex Liuzzi, AB ’07

Cofounder and CSO, Remessa Online

Alexandre started his career in the Financial Markets, working with Fund of Funds and Credit Agencies in 2004. Later, he joined Santander Asset Management as an analyst for the Product Development team for two consecutive summer programs. After graduating from the University of Chicago with Dean´s List, Alexandre joined JP Morgan Chase in New York as an Investment Banking Analyst focused mainly on Project Finance and M&A for US based Utilities companies. In 2008, he joined M Square Brazil / VELT Partners as buy-side research analyst responsible for Technology, Payments and Exchanges in Brazil and after 2 years he became a partner of the fund given his contribution in stock picking, with a total AUM of over US$1.5bn. After 6 years at VELT and almost 10 years in the Financial markets, Alexandre decided to become a tech entrepreneur investing, building and operating new fintech ventures in Latam. Alexandre has co-founded and is now board member in Finpass, a credit market place focused on SMBs and co-founded BeeTech / Remessa Online where works full time in Strategy, Funding, Finance, M&A and Institucional Relations helping the company secure its funding from Seed to Series B/C and become one of the largest players in the cross-border payment market in Brazil.

Inés Alvarez Quijano, MBA ’20

Inés Alvarez Quijano, MBA ’20

Head of Strategy and Business Development, Cargamos

View Bio

Inés Alvarez Quijano, MBA ’20

Head of Strategy and Business Development, Cargamos

Ines is the Head of Strategy and Business Development at Cargamos in Mexico City. Her prior experience includes consulting at McKinsey, investment banking, and venture capital. Ines earned a MBA from The University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business and a BS from Universidad Iberoamericana, Ciudad de México.

 

Europe Co-Chairs

Alex Boyce, MBA ’17

Alex Boyce, MBA ’17

Cofounder and COO, Fuzey

View Bio

Alex Boyce, MBA ’17

Cofounder and COO, Fuzey

Alex is the Cofounder of Fuzey, which builds customer engagement software that helps local businesses strengthen their connection with the communities they serve. Fuzey is backed by Flash Ventures. Alex holds a BA from Columbia University, and an MBA from Chicago Booth. Prior to Fuzey, Alex was the Head of Growth at Disperse. Prior to the startup world, Alex worked in investment banking.

Magdalena Gatzinska, AB ’96, MBA ’00

Magdalena Gatzinska, AB ’96, MBA ’00

Investor and Board Member, C2 Ventures

View Bio

Magdalena Gatzinska, AB ’96, MBA ’00

Investor and Board Member, C2 Ventures

Magdalena is an investment executive with 22 years of experience in senior leadership and entrepreneurial roles within the principal investment space and capital markets. She has a successful record of advising on and managing global multi-asset class portfolios, building successful organizations from the ground up, growing and restructuring businesses to deliver rapid increases in valuation, leveraging emerging technologies to optimize processes and enter new markets, and raising mission-critical funding.

Magdalena’s experience spans across the investment spectrum – from private investments to capital markets. She is the Co-Founder & Chief Investment Officer of Catalyst Capital (C2A) – a principal investments and advisory company with clients across the US, Europe, and MENA. She holds several board & advisory positions with private equity & technology companies. Her focus is on growth strategy & new markets entry, facilitating access to multinationals and sovereigns (as clients and investors), financial engineering/deal structuring and negotiations. Previously, Magdalena headed an Equity & Hybrid Derivatives desk at JPMorgan & Deutsche Bank – building an institutional client base across Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

Magdalena holds a MBA (2000) in Analytical Finance & Econometrics, and BA (1996) in Economics from the University of Chicago. She lived and worked in various cities in the US, Europe and the Middle East. She is an avid reader, passionate about science, technology, and human development.

Whitney Morgan, MBA ’14 

Whitney Morgan, MBA ’14 

Head of Partnerships, CoinFirm

View Bio

Whitney Morgan, MBA ’14 

Head of Partnerships, CoinFirm

Whitney Morgan is the Head of Partnerships at Coinfirm, a blockchain analytics company for crypto players. Prior to working in crypto, she led growth and partnerships teams for various fintech and tech startups, spent time in VC investing in digital media and health technology companies, and was an engineer in the cyber security and systems engineering spaces. She holds an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business and a B.S. in Systems & Information Engineering from the University of Virginia. Whitney lives with her husband and daughter in Paris, France.

Asia Co-Chairs

Brian Tsui, MBA ’11 

Brian Tsui, MBA ’11 

Partner, Cataliize

View Bio

Brian Tsui, MBA ’11 

Partner, Cataliize

Brian’s international career stands at the intersection of entrepreneurship and management consulting. He has spent over a decade leading at a global consultancy: launching and managing a corporate finance practice in Southeast Asia and a financial institution practice in the US, helping C-suite executives at the most complex companies embrace, invest in, and integrate emerging technologies.

As an early-stage tech investor and a venture partner of AngelHub, Brian enjoys mentoring and judging at various startup competitions. He has shared his favorite topic “what’s missing in your perfect pitch?” with 1,000+ founders, intrapreneurs, and university students. The annual BóLè Forum, which Brian organizes, is attended by 200+ angel investors, VCs and family offices.

Brian holds a BA from the University of Michigan and an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. He serves on the leadership committees of the UChicago Alumni Club, Chicago Booth Alumni Club, and Chicago Economics Society, in Hong Kong. He is also a business advisor to Junior Achievement Hong Kong.

Gaurav Gulati, MBA ’08

Gaurav Gulati, MBA ’08

CIO and Head, Aroa Ventures

View Bio

Gaurav Gulati, MBA ’08

CIO and Head, Aroa Ventures

Gaurav Gulati is the Head and Chief Investment Officer of Aroa Ventures, a fund which invests in growth-stage businesses in the consumer, technology, and leisure infrastructure sectors. Gaurav is also the Founder and Managing Partner of ScaleX Partners, an early stage investment and startup advisory firm. Gaurav’s entrepreneurial journey started in 2010 and over the past decade he has been involved in various startups in India. He was part of the founding team and COO of Innov8 Coworking which in 2019 was sold to OYO Hotels & Homes. Prior to Innov8 he Co-Founded Purist, a corporate food services company, which in 2018 was sold to Cure.Fit.

Gaurav has spent his formative years living in the United States, Argentina, Czech Republic, Malaysia, and India. He earned his Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science from the University of Illinois in Chicago and an M.B.A. from The University of Chicago Booth School of Business.

Prachi Windlass

Prachi Windlass

Director, Michael & Susan Dell Foundation India, LLP

View Bio

Prachi Windlass

Director, Michael & Susan Dell Foundation India, LLP

As Director of Education, Prachi heads the foundation’s India education portfolio, which focuses on large scale school system transformation and high quality education service providers.

Prachi is on the board of several for-profit education companies and advisory committees to state governments and education departments. She is passionate about the area of data driven education and has spearheaded the foundation’s work in multiple ways, including: incubating service providers, creating role model states and embedding student learning based accountability in all portfolio companies.

Before joining the foundation, Prachi worked at Boston Consulting Group in Gurgaon, India and in the telecommunications sector at Qualcomm and Motorola. Prachi has over 15 years of diverse set of operational and leadership experience in India and US.

Prachi has a bachelor’s in electrical engineering from Indian Institute of Technology Delhi, a master’s degree from University of Southern California, Los Angeles and MBA from the University of Chicago.

Calvin Chu, MBA ’09

Calvin Chu, MBA ’09

Managing Partner, Eden Strategy Institute

View Bio

Calvin Chu, MBA ’09

Managing Partner, Eden Strategy Institute

Calvin Chu Yee Ming is Managing Partner at Eden Strategy Institute, LLP. He has advised senior executives in over 20 countries, including organizations such as 3M; Bell Labs; Canon; Coca-Cola; Cummins; DBS; DHL; Disney; Fujitsu; HP; Intel; General Electric; M1; MasterCard; Medtronic; Nikkei; Nokia; Reed Elsevier; Roche; Samsung; SKF; StarHub; Standard Chartered Bank; Sumitomo; TNT; UNDP; UNESCO; UNICEF; and VISA; as well as the governments of Australia; Malaysia; New Zealand; Indonesia; Philippines; Singapore; Thailand; and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.Calvin was recognised as a NetImpact Change-maker in 2014 and inducted into the International Who’s Who of Professionals in 2009. Under Calvin’s leadership, Eden Strategy Institute has been awarded as The Most Innovative Management Consultancy in APAC Insider’s Singapore Business Awards; Corporate Livewire’s Management Consultancy of the Year; Global 100’s Most Innovative Management Consultancy (Singapore); Corporate Vision’s Best Social Innovation Consultancy (Singapore); and was also the winner of the National Business Award in the Consulting category by the Singapore Business Review.His work has appeared in Asian Banking & Finance, Asia Pacific Biotech News, BusinessWeek, The Star, the Straits Times, the Singapore Business Review, Today, and the Wall Street Journal, and he has featured at the ASEAN Smart Cities Network, ASEAN Social Entrepreneurship Forum, The Economist Social Innovation in Action, the Regional CEO & CIO Summit, Asia-Pacific CFO Summit, Business & Nature Forum, Institutional Investors APAC Summit, Singapore Business Federation, TEDx, Education Innovation, Prepaid Mobile Asia, Private Healthcare Asia, and Biomedical Business Conference.Calvin has been a Judge, Reviewer, and Mentor at the President’s Challenge Social Enterprise Award, The Grand Challenges Explorations (GCE) Program of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, MIT Inclusive Innovation Challenge, MIT Emerging Technologies Innovators Under 35, the Youth Social Enterprise Programme Grant Committee, The DBS-NUS Social Venture Challenge Asia, The Grameen Creative Lab, the Lee Kuan Yew Global Business Plan Competition, Social Innovation Camp Asia, Start-up@Singapore, and The University of Chicago Booth School of Business Global New Venture Challenge. He has also served as an iAdvisor with IE Singapore, an Executive Advisor at NUS Enterprise, and on the boards of BioFourmis, Bettr Lives, Conjunct Consulting, Rotary Club, and the World Toilet Organization.

This site uses cookies and other tracking technologies to assist with navigation and your ability to provide feedback, analyze your use of products and services, assist with our promotional and marketing efforts.

Accept