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College New Venture Challenge

College New Venture Challenge

CNVC Judges

David Appel, AB ’81, MBA ’82
David Appel, AB ’81, MBA ’82

David Appel, AB ’81, MBA ’82

Chairman and CEO, WAG Hotels

David Appel, AB ’81, MBA ’82, is the Chairman and CEO of venture-backed pet hotel chain WAG Hotels. Prior to that, Appel worked for his family business Orange Glo International where he utilized infomercials to drive the company’s OxiClean line to lead the U.S. stain removal product category. The company was sold in 2006. He was also previously a partner at Accenture, where he worked for 17 years. He holds both an MBA and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Chicago.

Larry Berlin, AB ’89, MBA ’94
Larry Berlin, AB ’89, MBA ’94

Larry Berlin, AB ’89, MBA ’94

Senior Vice President, First Analysis

Larry Berlin, AB ’89, MBA ’94, is CFO at Freedom Fries, an IT company working on data privacy issues.  He was a senior vice president at First Analysis until April 2019, where he led investment efforts and provided research coverage of leading private and publicly-traded companies in the financial technology and digital marketing sectors.  He remains affiliated with First Analysis and its 12 and 13th funds.  He is an observer on the board of Freeosk for First Analysis and a member of the board of Solve, Inc. He is also an independent member of the board of Incapital and serves on its audit committee. His work has been cited for excellence in the StarMine analyst awards. Prior to joining First Analysis in 1999, he was acting CFO at Doculabs, a Chicago-based information technology consulting firm. Earlier, he was a consultant for Ganymede Corp., an associate in corporate finance at UBS, and a member of the Chicago Board Options Exchange and the Chicago Board of Trade. He earned a bachelor’s degree and an MBA from the University of Chicago. Outside of work he curls, bikes, sails, and is a photographer.

Louis Goldman, JD ’74
Louis Goldman, JD ’74

Louis Goldman, JD ’74

General Counsel of Bloq, Inc.

Louis Goldman, JD ’74, is the General Counsel of Bloq, Inc., a leading blockchain technology company. He is also the managing partner of Navigator Law Group, a boutique law firm focused on corporate projects including M&A, securities, and significant work with startups, blockchain technology and venture capital/angel investing groups. He graduated Phi Beta Kappa from the University of California, Berkeley with a degree in economics and then obtained a law degree from the University of Chicago Law School (Order of the Coif and cum laude). In New York City, Goldman worked for Cleary Gottlieb and also established a merchant bank, Abacus & Associates LP, where he was a managing director. He was a cofounder of JustWrite EMR, an electronic medical records startup.

Nancy Hayes, MBA ’80
Nancy Hayes, MBA ’80

Nancy Hayes, MBA ’80

Angel Investor

Nancy Hayes, MBA ’80, is an active angel investor and serves as mentor to entrepreneurs. She advises corporate and nonprofit executives with an interest in management and leadership skill development. She has invested in 22 women-led companies. Nancy has been a senior executive of the IBM Corporation, CEO of two social services non-profit organizations, Dean of the College of Business at San Francisco State University, CFO and Chief Administrative Officer of that university, cofounder of a crowdfunding site and Managing Director of the Golden Seeds angel group Silicon Valley chapter. She has an MBA with a concentration in Finance from the University of Chicago.

 

Hilarie Koplow-McAdams, AM ’87
Hilarie Koplow-McAdams, AM ’87

Hilarie Koplow-McAdams, AM ’87

Venture Partner, NEA

Hilarie Koplow-McAdams, AM ’87, joined NEA as a Venture Partner in 2017 on the technology team where she focuses on enterprise software and services. She spent the last three decades at growth-stage companies in operating and board roles. Most recently, Hilarie was President at New Relic. Prior to that, Hilarie was President at Salesforce.com responsible for the company’s worldwide sales organization. Hilarie started her career at Oracle Corporation where she held a variety of product and distribution roles over the course of 18 years. Hilarie currently serves as a member of the board of directors for Tableau, Zendesk, Bloomreach, Hacker One, Knotch and Data Robot. Hilarie has a master’s degree in Public Policy from the University of Chicago and a bachelor’s degree from Mills College.

Michelle Kristula-Green, AB ’77, AM ’81
Michelle Kristula-Green, AB ’77, AM ’81

Michelle Kristula-Green, AB ’77, AM ’81

Global Business Executive

Michelle Kristula-Green, AB ’77, AM ’81 was most recently the global head of people and culture at Leo Burnett and Arc Worldwide where she created strategies for attracting and retaining people across the globe. Prior to that, she was the President-Asia Pacific at the company. She holds a BA and an MA in far eastern languages and civilization from the University of Chicago and currently lives in Big Sky, MT where she consults with startups, skis, and is an artist.

Peter Layton, AB ’82, MBA ’87
Peter Layton, AB ’82, MBA ’87

Peter Layton, AB ’82, MBA ’87

Founder Partner, Blackthorne Capital Management

 

Peter Peter Layton, AB ’82, MBA ’87, is one of the founding partners of Blackthorne Capital Management and is the owner of Warhawk Fund. Layton serves as the Chairman of the BOX Exchange Group, a partner of Efficient Capital Management, and a Member of Hyde Park Angels. He is also the CEO of The Tallgrass Group, the parent company of various corporations specializing in different aspects of ecological restoration. He holds a BA in economics from the University of Chicago and an MBA from Chicago Booth.

Lindsey Lyman, MBA ’08
Lindsey Lyman, MBA ’08

Lindsey Lyman, MBA ’08

Founder, Growth Studios

Lindsey Lyman, MBA ’08, is the founder of Growth Studios, an innovation consultancy that helps companies build commercially viable new products, services, and business models. Through her work as a practitioner, Lindsey also helps executives become stronger innovation leaders. She consults with leading firms, companies, and entrepreneurs to identify unique growth opportunities. Prior to founding Growth Studios, Lindsey spent 10 years at McKinsey & Company, where she helped build McKinsey’s global innovation practice and co-developed McKinsey’s Innovation Executive Education program. Lindsey holds an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, where she graduated with highest distinction. She now serves as a Clinical Professor of Entrepreneurship there.

 

Carl Meyer, AB ’91, MBA ’92
Carl Meyer, AB ’91, MBA ’92

Carl Meyer, AB ’91, MBA ’92

CEO and CIO at Silver Rock Financial

Carl Meyer, AB ’91, MBA ’92, is the CEO and CIO at Silver Rock Financial LP, an investment management firm. He founded Silver Rock in 2016, focusing on opportunistic investments within credit markets, including performing bonds and loans, and distressed debt. Prior to launching Silver Rock, Carl served as Chief Investment Officer of Silver Rock’s predecessor firm, an ultra-high net worth family office, from 2010 to 2016. Previously, he worked for approximately 18 years at Citigroup or its predecessors where he ran the High Yield Syndicate business, the public side of the US High Yield business, and the Global Distressed Debt and Equity businesses. He holds both a BA and MBA from the University of Chicago.

 

Rohini Pandhi, MBA ’10
Rohini Pandhi, MBA ’10

Rohini Pandhi, MBA ’10

Product Lead, Square

Rohini Pandhi, MBA ’10, is currently on the product team at Square, a financial services and payments company based in San Francisco. Her previous experiences have been in building new products for startups, developing existing product lines for growth stage companies, and creating new innovation strategies for larger corporations. In her free time, Rohini also advises, invests, and advocates for tech startups, especially those with underrepresented entrepreneurs through a nonprofit she cofounded called Transparent Collective. Rohini is from the Midwest and studied Computer Engineering at the University of Michigan and completed her MBA at Chicago Booth.

Daphne Preuss
Daphne Preuss

Daphne Preuss

Chief Business Officer, New West Genetics

Daphne Preuss is an entrepreneur focused on bringing genetic and biotechnology innovations to agriculture. She previously founded and built Chromatin Inc. into the leading innovator in sorghum, a crop that meets global needs for food, feed and fuel, while conserving land and water resources. She frequently advises startup companies and their investors, and is passionate about transitioning innovation to the commercial sector. Prior to joining Chromatin, she was a Howard Hughes Investigator at the University of Chicago. Daphne previously chaired the NCBI – the NIH’s DNA database division, and has served on BIO’s Food & Agriculture Section Governing Board.

Ellen Rudnick, MBA ’73
Ellen Rudnick, MBA ’73

Ellen Rudnick, MBA ’73

Senior Advisor and Adjunct Professor for Entrepreneurship

Ellen Rudnick, MBA ’73, previously served as executive director of the Polsky Center and clinical professor of entrepreneurship and, together with Steve Kaplan, was instrumental in the creation of the entrepreneurship programming at Chicago Booth. Prior to joining the Booth faculty she spent 25 years in business management and entrepreneurial activities, primarily in the health care and information services industries. During this time, she was president and CEO of Healthcare Knowledge Resources, president of HCIA, chairman of Pacific Biometrics, and corporate vice president of Baxter Healthcare Corporation. She works with the many startups that emerge from Chicago Booth’s entrepreneurship programs. Both her governance activities and startup interests help her to bridge the gap in the classroom between the theoretical and the real world.  She serves or has served on numerous corporate boards including Liberty Mutual, First Midwest Bank, HMS Holdings, Patterson Companies, Oxford Health Plans, Northshore University Healthcare Research and Development, the Chicagoland Entrepreneurial Center/1871 and MATTER. She received a BA from Vassar College and an MBA from Chicago Booth.

RoseMary Safranek, AB ’80, MBA ’88
RoseMary Safranek, AB ’80, MBA ’88

RoseMary Safranek, AB ’80, MBA ’88

Founder, Ninepeaks Capital Management

RoseMary Safranek, AB ’80, MBA ’88, founded Ninepeaks Capital Management in 2002. The firm is a specialized investment advisor with offices in New York and Hong Kong. RoseMary has lived in New York, Hong Kong, London, Tokyo, and Chicago since setting out from Fort Smith, Arkansas. Her work has been published in The Wall Street Journal as well as Smash magazine. A four-year varsity tennis player and Illinois Small College Doubles Champion, RoseMary earned an AB in economics and an MBA in finance from the University of Chicago. She is the oldest of 10 children.

 

Reese Schroeder
Reese Schroeder

Reese Schroeder

Managing Director, Tyson Ventures

 

Reese Schroeder currently serves as Managing Director of Tyson Ventures. He is responsible for building and managing the opportunity pipeline, as well as executing investment transactions.  Prior to joining Tyson Foods, Reese was with Motorola for 28 years serving as Managing Director for Motorola Ventures/Motorola Solutions Venture Capital from 2004 until 2017. Prior to joining Motorola, Reese was Vice President of Sales and Administration for a Midwest-based manufacturer of chemical transportation containers. Reese graduated in 1981 from North Central College in Naperville, Illinois in with a B.A. majoring in Political Science. He also received his J.D. from John Marshall Law School in 1984.

Phil Schwarz, MBA ’08
Phil Schwarz, MBA ’08

Phil Schwarz, MBA ’08

Investor, Corazon Capital

Phil Schwarz, MBA ’08, is a venture capital investor at Corazon Capital, investing in early-stage technology companies. From 2014-2016, Phil served as Chief Marketing Officer of Tinder, overseeing the company’s brand, growth and retention marketing efforts worldwide. Phil’s prior roles include Vice President of Growth Initiatives at Match Group, as well as Executive Director at Kaplan and Kaplan Ventures, where he cofounded the Kaplan/Techstars EdTech Accelerator, invested in early- stage EdTech companies, and served on Boards of Directors for investment portfolio companies. Phil received his MBA with honors from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business and a BBA, cum laude, from Ohio University’s College of Business.

 

Mark Tebbe
Mark Tebbe

Mark Tebbe

Adjunct Professor of Entrepreneurship, Chicago Booth; Entrepreneur-in-Residence, Polsky Center

Mark Tebbe brings a wealth of successful entrepreneurial experience into the classroom by leveraging his founding of two NASDAQ-listed corporations as well as direct involvement in numerous start-up and high-growth companies over the past thirty years. As both an Adjunct Professor of Entrepreneurship and Entrepreneur-in-Residence at the University of Chicago Polsky Center, Tebbe aids students in their entrepreneurial efforts and helps other professors enhance their classes. He has spent many years of judging and mentoring in Polsky’s New Venture Challenge (NVC). Outside of the classroom, Tebbe serves as Chairman of ChicagoNEXT, a dedicated public-private effort to improve Chicago’s competiveness in science, technology, innovation and entrepreneurship.

In 1984, Mark founded Lante Corporation, (NASDAQ: LNTE) a Chicago-based technology-consulting firm in which he served as CEO and Chairman. Using $10,000 borrowed on his credit card, Tebbe launched the technology advisory firm that helped to create over 250 new businesses as well as building backend infrastructure and websites for established companies including Microsoft, Dell, American Airlines, American Express and Charles Schwab. Lante was taken private by SBI Group in September 2002 and sold (as Razorfish) to aQuantive in July 2004.

Guy Turner, MBA ’10
Guy Turner, MBA ’10

Guy Turner, MBA ’10

Managing Director, Hyde Park Venture Partners; Entrepreneur-in-Residence, Polsky Center

 

Guy Turner, MBA ’10, is managing director at Hyde Park Venture Partners which he cofounded in 2011 from Boston Consulting Group, where he focused on corporate strategy across a variety of industries. He spent his early career as a mechanical engineer with Raytheon and General Electric. He serves on the boards of numerous startups, and is a Kauffman Fellow. Guy received his BS in mechanical engineering from Cornell University, and his MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. He is also an Entrepreneur-in-Residence for the Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation.

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