ECE Advisory Council
The School of Electrical and Computer Engineering's Advisory Council was created to help guide the School through the challenges of the next few years, and is made up of members who represent a broad spectrum of interests and backgrounds. The Advisory Council meets annually to discuss important issues facing the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering. We have found that outside evaluations help us keep our programs fresh and forward moving.
The Advisory Council is composed of people (often alumni) from industry, research labs, and government services. Members normally serve a three-year term and review our programs, new hires, and the School's direction and resources at an annual meeting during the spring semester.
A typical agenda would include welcoming talks from the Dean of the College of Engineering and the Director of the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering. Presentations about our instructional programs are given by the director of graduate studies, the associate director and director of undergraduate studies, and the assistant director of the M.Eng. program. New faculty give presentations on their work. The second day includes executive sessions, informational talks by faculty, and exit interviews. As a follow-up to the meetings, the council chair provides an appraisal on their findings including commendations, concerns, and recommendations.
Meet our Advisory Council Members
John Balen: General Partner, Canaan PartnersClick to Open
John Balen understands entrepreneurs. Since joining Canaan in 1995, John has worked with some of the smartest people in the technology industry to build high-performance companies such as Commerce One, which brought B2B ecommerce to the masses, eStamp, the pioneer of Internet postage, Intraware the leading provider of electronic license delivery and management, and Rightpoint, a real-time customer analytics software provider, acquired by Epiphany.
At Canaan, John focuses on investments in communications & mobility, and next-generation enterprise technology companies that are disrupting the balance of traditional markets. His portfolio includes ID Analytics, which offers the nation’s only real-time fraud prevention system for enterprises. He also invests in digital media companies that empower the consumer through web-based services, such as Blurb.com, a revolutionary company changing the face of publishing by letting anyone easily create and sell bookstore-quality books.
Before joining Canaan Partners, John held a variety of operational and financial roles, where he learned both how to build companies from the ground up and how to fund them. He served as a Managing Director of Horsley Bridge Partners, a multi-billion dollar private equity firm in San Francisco. During his nine-year tenure at Horsley Bridge, John was responsible for a wide spectrum of investments in technology companies, as well as many venture capital and buyout partnerships. Earlier in his career, John was a sales applications engineer at fiber communications startup Codenoll Technology Corp. and an engineer at Digital Equipment Corp.
John currently serves on the boards of innovative digital media firms Blurb and Cardlytics, and enterprise technology firms Echopass, ezRez, ID Analytics and SOASTA.
John received a BS in electrical engineering and an MBA from Cornell University. A firm believer in the value of education, John is the Chair of the Strategic Planning Committee, and as a board member serves on the Executive Committee of his children’s school. John frequently donates time and money to educational causes.
Richard Calle: Head of AI Research Business Development, MicrosoftClick to Open
Rick is a veteran of both large established technology corporations as well as multiple Silicon Valley startups. His experience bridges multiple business functions steeped in technology, including product development, product management, marketing and business development.
Currently focused on the business and technologies of AI and computing, Rick’s mission is to help Microsoft Research to identify, incubate, partner (Academic & Industry) and drive the next-horizon of business opportunities. He helps Microsoft to deliver cutting-edge Artificial Intelligence/Deep Learning/Machine Learning technologies into products that can benefit everyone on the planet. Engaging the business levers around making AI computing Fast, Power-efficient, and Small, Rick’s focus is on connecting the dots from new algorithmic workloads to useful new use-case applications. This includes external and internal partnering and evaluation of innovative computing architectures, new algorithmic techniques, and unlocking the business value proposition.
Rick previously lead Qualcomm Research and Development business, partnerships and product strategy for AI/Deep Learning technologies and emerging AI hardware acceleration. Technologies that will help make the world's best next-generation Smartphones, Automotive and IoT embedded devices. His focus areas were the business applications and power-efficient hardware acceleration of deep learning and machine learning workloads; frameworks for power-aware multi-core heterogenous parallel computing and machine-learning based behavioral anomaly detection for network security.
Prior to Microsoft and Qualcomm, Rick was most recently Vice President of Marketing at iKoa Corporation, a semiconductor startup focused on delivering an ultra low-power scalable many-core processor combined with unique new software algorithms for voice enhancement, vision computing and video processing. Rick led product marketing, and built early customer engagements through to prototypes for the company's mobile and consumer electronics customers.
At startup ArtX, Rick led the marketing efforts for this semiconductor startup delivering the first integrated 3D graphics and core logic chipset with polygon acceleration for PCs, and a custom GPU chipset product line for Nintendo. The company was successfully acquired by ATI (now AMD).
In his tenure at startup NeoMagic, Rick led the product marketing efforts that took the company to a #1 position in the notebook multimedia chip business, culminating in a successful IPO of the company. Rick returned to NeoMagic as Vice President of Product Marketing and Business Development, responsible for focusing the marketing and product efforts on the emerging business of Mobile TV for cellular handsets. The company was the first to deliver a single-chip "System-on-chip" semiconductor solution for mobile TV supporting various standards, with multiple mobile phone customer engagements in Taiwan, Japan and Europe.
Prior to that he worked with S3, a startup and IPO exit with the first consumer 3D GPU chips for PCs, and led a team of technical marketing/applications engineers at Advanced Micro Devices.
Rick's technical background includes designing avionics at Northrop Aircraft, and implementing embedded processors and software for consumer audio and security applications. Rick completed his B.S. Electrical Engineering in 1983 at Cornell University. He is an alumnus of the University of California Berkeley Haas School of Business, having completed the Berkeley Executive Program in 2005.
Frank Close: President, Guardian Security Systems, Inc.Click to Open
Upon completion of a Masters Degree in Electrical Engineering from Cornell, Frank worked on the design of control and instrumentation with a Boston firm, Stone and Webster Engineering. At the end of the project, he was hired at Nuclear Plant in Oswego, New York.
He went back to school in Boston for his MBA when a great opportunity came his way. His father offered to sell him a little company, in Seattle, Guardian Security Systems, Inc. Guardian Security had a grand total of four employees and was losing $60,000 per year. With only two classes left to complete his MBA, he chose to take this unique chance to launch into business, and accepted the great entrepreneurial challenge created by his father's offer.
Over the years Guardian Security has grown to a company of 100+ employees and $14,000,000 in sales per year. Guardian Security's corporate offices are located in Seattle, WA with branch offices in Bellingham and the Kitsap Peninsula. Protection of Life and property is the core business with expertise in Fire Alarms, Card Access Systems, Intrusion alarms and Camera systems.
Guardian owns a U.L. Listed central station, run as a separate division. It provides Alarm monitoring for over 28,000 customers.
Frank's Cornell Education has, among other things, taught him to define problems and then to solve them. It taught him to never be afraid of anything technical. His father taught him that money spent on education was always a good thing.
Since returning to the Pacific Northwest, he has thoroughly enjoyed all the area has to offer, sailing, skiing, hiking, biking, and swimming. Frank has been married for 34 years and has three children now 30, 27, 21, one grandchild born in March 2009. He has had the great adventure of building and running a fascinating business.
Neil Exter: Partner, Third Rock VenturesClick to Open
Neil Exter joined Third Rock Ventures in 2007 and plays an integral role in the overall formation, development and business strategy of our portfolio companies. Additionally, he supports the business development efforts within the portfolio companies. He also assumes active leadership roles in our portfolio companies, functioning as interim Chief Operating Officer/Chief Business Officer through the first 12-18 months post launch.
Neil has over 17 years of business development and strategic experience, facilitating the successful development and implementation of operations and collaborations across the spectrum of newly emerging and established biotech companies.
Prior to joining Third Rock Ventures, Neil was CBO of Alantos Pharmaceuticals, leading the sale of the company to Amgen. Previously, Neil served as VP for Millennium Pharmaceuticals, directing in-licensing and M&A. Earlier in his career, Neil held various executive management roles within the high technology industry, including tenures at Hewlett Packard and Wang Laboratories.
Neil holds an MBA as a Baker Scholar from Harvard Business School, a MS from Stanford University and a BS from Cornell University. Neil is a member of the Board of Overseers at Children’s Hospital Boston and a member of the Children’s Hospital Boston Board Research Committee. Additionally, Neil is a member of the Innovation Research Fund at Partners Healthcare.
Mikko Hakkarainen: Director, LutronClick to Open
Dr. Mikko Hakkarainen is originally from Finland (curiously though, he never worked at Nokia!) and he found his way to the American shores via UWCA, a prestigious international high school in Wales, UK, and concentrated on Electrical Engineering at MIT, receiving his S.B., S.M., and PhD degrees from the Institute. He is active in student education and outreach through MIT’s Educational Council, the Florida Engineering Society, and other local school based organizations.
Mikko joined Lutron Electronics in 2009 after over two decades of high performance analog and digital IC design and management, and is now enjoying the challenge of helping create the world’s highest quality lighting control products. He is currently responsible for growing Lutron’s satellite engineering offices and their product development teams, with a focus on ensuring that they become seamlessly integrated into the parent company. He specializes in driving for top engineering quality and efficiency and in bringing together engineering teams with product planning, procurement, marketing and sales organizations.
Mikko has a broad experience base includes engineering design, quality assurance, and manufacture of electronic products, both at the component and final product levels. His primary focus areas cover superior design of lighting controls and automation, solid-state lighting, digital cameras, flat panel displays, cellular base stations, battery chargers and gauges, and medical diagnostic equipment. He has designed commercially available IC products for all these areas and has built application platforms as well as end products in many of these sectors.
Wendi Heinzelman: Dean of the Edmund A. Hajim School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, University of RochesterClick to Open
Wendi Heinzelman is the Dean of the Edmund A. Hajim School of Engineering and Applied Sciences at the University of Rochester. She is also a full professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering with a secondary appointment in the Computer Science Department at Rochester. During spring 2008, Dr. Heinzelman was a Visiting Erskine Fellow at the University of Canterbury in Christchurch, New Zealand. Dr. Heinzelman received a B.S. degree in Electrical Engineering from Cornell University in 1995 and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from MIT in 1997 and 2000, respectively. Dr. Heinzelman is a member of N^2 Women and SWE, a Distinguished Scientist of ACM Sigmobile, and a Fellow of the IEEE Communications Society, the IEEE Signal Processing Society, and the IEEE Computer Society.
Dr. Heinzelman’s research interests span diverse areas—from wireless communications and networking to mobile-cloud computing to multimedia communications. Much of this work involves the design of advanced communication and networking protocols and architectures. Applications include providing better communications tools for soldiers in the field, understanding pollution in places such as India, enabling the continuous monitoring of wildlife and the environment, learning about family dynamics and healthy interpersonal communications, and designing a programming framework to support the development of health management applications. Heinzelman has contributed to 12 textbooks and has published in more than 50 journals and more than 100 conference and workshop proceedings. According to Google Scholar, she has been cited more than 39,000 times. Over her career, she has been the principal or co-principal investigator on more than 20 programs with combined funding support of nearly $11 million.
John Chi-Hung Hui: Senior Vice President of Research and Development, Pericom Semiconductor CorporationClick to Open
Dr. John Chi-Hung Hui is currently Senior Vice President of Research and Development at Pericom Semiconductor Corporation. As Chief Technical officer (CTO) at Pericom, he is responsible for technology direction and new product development. Pericom is a semiconductor company specializing in integrated connectivity, advanced timing, and signal integrity solutions for the computing, communications, and consumer markets.
Dr. Hui received his B.S.E.E. from Cornell University in 1976, his M.S.E.E. and Ph.D. from the University of California at Berkeley in 1977 and 1983, respectively. From 1977 to 1979, he worked at Intel Corporation on semiconductor process development. After receiving his Ph.D. degree in 1983, he did research work at Hewlett-Packard Laboratory on semiconductor device physics and VLSI process technology. From August 1987 to June 1990, he was R&D department manager at Integrated Device Technology. He cofounded Pericom Semiconductor Corporation in 1990 and has served as Vice President of Technology, Senior Vice President of Research and Development and board director.
Kevin Johnson: Partner, Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, LLPClick to Open
Kevin Johnson, who has an electrical engineering degree from Cornell, has tried a number of cases to verdict. Mr. Johnson serves as lead counsel for such companies such as Sony, Samsung, Marvell Semiconductor, MediaTek, Hynix, Bio-Rad, and Salesforce.com. His practice focuses on litigating patent infringement, trade secret, unfair competition, trademark, copyright and licensing actions in Federal and State courts as well as the International Trade Commission. His experience ranges from representing Fortune 50 companies to smaller rapidly growing technology companies in disputes related to smart phones, microprocessors, wireless communications, semiconductor processing equipment, liquid crystal devices, consumer products, consumer electronics, medical devices, biotech and life science products, business method customer loyalty programs, computer software and graphics, telecommunications, and optical devices.
Nader Mehravari: Chief Scientist, Axio, Inc.Click to Open
Dr. Nader Mehravari is the Chief Scientist at Axio, Inc. — a cyber risk engineering firm that helps organizations comprehensively manage cyber risk by harmonizing cybersecurity controls and cyber risk transfer. In this role, Dr. Mehravari is primarily responsible for the stewardship and evolution of Axio’s cyber risk models and analytics capabilities, as well as the design and execution of major client engagements and special projects.
Nader has over 35 years of experience in leading and performing technology, business, research, and training activities in aerospace, defense, telecommunications, information technology, transportation, and consulting industries for domestic and international entities. He is an executive leader in the development and use of strategic information technologies, products, and services in support of prolonged business growth and strong customer relationships in federal and commercial domains. His leadership experiences include assembling and leading strong teams, establishing and executing strategic plans, creating innovative technology and R&D environments, and managing operational risks.
His current areas of focus include cyber risk management, cyber insurance, operational and cyber resilience, cybersecurity and resilience management, protection and sustainment of critical infrastructure, preparedness planning, and associated risk management principles and practices.
Prior to Axio, Nader was with the cybersecurity research program of the Software Engineering Institute (SEI) at the Carnegie Mellon University (CMU). As a Principal Member of Technical Staff, he was responsible for technical leadership for, and putting into practice, a variety of cybersecurity and operational resilience management solutions and associated frameworks, diagnostic methodologies, and training programs.
Dr. Mehravari was with Lockheed Martin Corporation from 1992 through 2011. In his most recent assignment at Lockheed Martin, he was the Corporate Director for Business Resiliency. In this capacity, he oversaw all preparedness planning and associated governance and compliance activities for the entire Corporation. He was responsible for building and leading the Corporation’s business resilience program, including successfully implementing a modern, integrated, risk management based approach to IT disaster recovery, business continuity, crisis management, emergency management, and workforce continuity for the entire Lockheed Martin Corporation. His efforts and leadership effectively increased the operational resilience posture of the Lockheed Martin Corporation through technology infusion, process unification, standardization, and automation while balancing affordability and risk management.
Before joining Lockheed Martin, Dr. Mehravari was a Distinguished Member of Technical Staff at AT&T Bell Laboratories, where he was involved with the full life-cycle of activities (including basic research, design, development, and performance modeling and analysis of fielded systems) associated with the implementation of new networking, switching, transmission, and telecommunications systems and services for AT&T and its customers from 1982 to 1992.
Nader received his M.S. and Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from Cornell University in 1980 and 1982, respectively, and his B.S. in Electrical Engineering from the George Washington University in 1978.
He has remained active in the academic community through a combination of research, lectures, teaching, and industrial advising. He was a visiting lecturer in the Department of Electrical Engineering at Princeton University in 1991 and 1992, and an adjunct professor at the Department of Electrical Engineering of Syracuse University from 1999 to 2013. He has been an Adjunct Professor at Departments of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Cornell University since 1999. He currently serves as the chair of the Industry Advisory Council for Cornell University’s School of Electrical and Computer Engineering. He also serves on the Board of Directors of Guthrie, an integrated health care delivery enterprise.
He holds a dozen patents, is the author of over 100 technical publications and presentations, has delivered numerous invited lectures, and has developed and delivered many tutorials, workshops, and training courses. He is a senior member of IEEE, has served on several IEEE committees and conference boards, and had been the editor of several IEEE publications. He has received several business and professional awards including: Lockheed Martin excellence award for outstanding change leadership, Lockheed Martin award for outstanding achievement in business acquisition, and IEEE award for outstanding achievement in electrical engineering.
Daniel Miller: Managing Director, The Roda GroupClick to Open
Dan Miller is Managing Director of the Roda Group, a venture development firm that specializes in providing technology entrepreneurs with the environment and resources needed to ensure their ideas are successfully positioned in the marketplace.
He is the former president of, Ask Jeeves, Inc., a Roda Group affiliate company. He is the Chairman of CoolSystems, Inc., another Roda Group affiliate company. CoolSystems produces body cooling products that maximize human performance and healing.
At the end of 1994, Mr. Miller retired from his position as Executive Vice President of TCSI Corporation (Nasdaq: TCSI), a company he co-founded with his Roda Group partner, Roger Strauch. Mr. Miller retired from the Board of Directors of TCSI in June of 1997. TCSI is a leading provider of integrated software products and services for the global telecommunications industry.
Prior to TCSI, Mr. Miller was a systems engineer at Hughes Aircraft's Space and Communications Group where he was responsible for designing communications payloads for commercial communications satellites.
Mr. Miller received his Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering, with distinction, from Cornell University and his Master of Science in Electrical Engineering from Stanford University. He holds three patents in the areas of compression technology and wireless communications systems.
Mr. Miller is a member of the Board of Trustees of both the Chabot Space & Science Center and the Jewish Museum San Francisco. He is also a member of Cornell University's School of Electrical and Computer Engineering Advisory Board and University Council.
More info: http://www.rodagroup.com/principals.html#dan
William Pence: Executive Vice President and Chief Technology Officer, AOLClick to Open
As Chief Technology Officer, William Pence leads all aspects of AOL’s global technology strategy, platform development and external technology partnerships, as well as plays a key leadership role in the overall strategy and direction of the company. He is an accomplished leader in the digital technology industry with over 25 years of experience. William joined AOL on April 30, 2014.
Before joining AOL, William served as Executive Vice President and Chief Technology Officer of WebMD from 2007 to 2014 as well as Chief Operating Officer of WebMD from 2012 to 2014. At WebMD, he led many cross-company initiatives that drove innovative new products, improved operational efficiencies and user experiences for consumers and advertiser partners. He also drove technology and corporate operations improvement through automation, cloud technology and data management systems. William was instrumental in mobile product efforts across WebMD’s properties as well as the company’s global expansion. Prior to WebMD, William served as Chief Technology Officer and Senior Vice President at Napster from 2003 to 2007. From 2000 to 2003, he was the Chief Technology Officer for Universal Music Group’s online initiatives. Previously, William spent more than a decade at IBM.
William received a Bachelor of Science in Physics from the University of Virginia, and a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from Cornell University.
Ellen Grant Piccioli: Visiting Research Scientist, MIT Leaders for Global Operations (LGO) ProgramClick to Open
Ellen is currently a Visiting Research Scientist in the MIT Leaders for Global Operations (LGO) Program. She previously led Intel’s IT2Intel Strategic Product Engagement Program chartered to accelerate Intel's growth in enterprise markets by leveraging Intel IT's expertise in strategic partnership with Intel product groups. Formerly, Ellen was Director, Strategic Business engagements in Intel’s Eco-Technology Program Office, and held various engineering management roles. Prior to Intel, Ellen led design implementation and drove speed debug activities for Hewlett-Packard's Alpha 21364 microprocessor. Ellen started her career at Digital Equipment Corporation where she held leadership positions in process development and microprocessor design. She received a B.S. with Distinction in Electrical & Computer Engineering (ECE) from Cornell University, and an M.S. in EE from the University of Michigan. Ellen is a member of Cornell University’s ECE Advisory Council, the Boston Museum of Science’s (MOS) Women in Science and Engineering (WISE) Committee (Co-chair) and MOS Overseer, and the SpeakEasy Stage Company Board of Overseers. She is also a past member of Cornell’s Athletic Alumni Advisory Committee as well as the International Conference on Microelectronic Test Structures (ICMTS) Technical Committee. Ellen was named one of ten Mass High Tech New England “Women to Watch” in 2008.
Michael Spencer: Emeritus ProfessorClick to Open
Electrical Engineer, Computer Scientist and Engineering Professor Michael G. Spencer was born in Detroit, Michigan. He grew up in Washington, D.C. and traveled to Ithaca, New York to study at Cornell University. He earned his B.S. degree in 1974 and his M.S. degree in 1975. Spencer worked at Bell Laboratories from 1974 to 1977 before returning to Cornell to receive his Ph.D. degree in electrical engineering in 1981.
He joined the faculty of Howard University as an assistant professor in 1984. Spencer also founded the Materials Science Center for Excellence in 1984 and served as its director for the entirety of his career at Howard. He spent the next eighteen years working and researching at Howard, becoming a full professor in 1990 and the David and Lucile Packard Chaired Professor of Materials Science in 1999. During this time, Spencer also worked as a visiting scientist at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)’s JET Propulsion Laboratory. In 1999, he returned to his alma mater, Cornell University as Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering. He served as Associate Dean of Research and Graduate Studies for the College of Engineering from 2002 to 2008. Spencer is an Emeritus Professor in the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Cornell University.
Spencer directed the Wide Bandgap Laboratory where he continued his research on semiconductor materials like Silicon Carbide (SiC) and Gallium Nitride (GaN), as well as developing research on two dimensional semiconductors like graphene. He co-founded Widetronix, a company that builds low power long life betavoltaic batteries. Spencer has written over 130 publications concerning semiconductors and has also co-authored eleven United States patents.
In 1985, he received the Presidential Young Investigator Award from the National Science Foundation. Spencer also received the QEM (Quality Education for Minorities) Giants of Science Award and the Allen Berman Research Publication Award from the Naval Research Laboratory. He served as one of the directors for the National Science Foundation (NSF) Nano-Fabrication Network. Spencer was a member of the program committee of the American Vacuum Society and the International Conference on Silicon Carbide and Related Materials. Spencer has severed on the review of manufacturing-related programs at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), the panel on sensors and electron Devices for the National Research Council (National Academies) and the committee on assessment of solid state lightingfor the National Research Council (a part of the National Academies of Science and Engineering) March 2011-present. He also held memberships in the Electronic Materials Conference Organizing Committee and the Compound Semiconductor Symposium Organizing Committee.
David Thompson: Corporate Vice President, Microsoft Online Microsoft CorporationClick to Open
David Thompson is an industry veteran with 20 years of successful software engineering leadership at Microsoft Corporation. As corporate vice president of the Business Online Services Group, he is responsible for online services for organizations of all sizes, educational institutions and government agencies, as well as the underlying Online Service Delivery Platform, and Directory, Access and Information Protection products and services. Thompson joined Microsoft in 1990, initially leading a development group in the Network Business Unit. He later moved to the Windows NT® team, responsible for Networking and Distributed Systems through the release of Windows NT 4.0. In April 2000 he became the vice president for the Windows® Server Product Group, delivering the 2000 and 2003 versions of the Windows® Server. In January 2004 he assumed leadership of the Exchange group, responsible for Exchange products and services through the release of Exchange 2007.
Before coming to Microsoft, Thompson worked for Digital Equipment Corp. on the first VAX Clusters and at Concord Communications as director of software development.
Eugene Weber: Managing Partner, Weber Capital ManagementClick to Open
Gene is the Managing Partner of Weber Capital Management, LLC in San Francisco. He founded Weber Capital in 1994 to expand the U.S. equity portfolio for a London-based institutional investor. In 1999 Weber Capital raised its first fund for outside investors, and is now investing its fourth fund. The firm is a long term investor in micro-cap public companies and late stage ventures, with a focus on information technology, communications and medical devices. The firm was an early public investor in companies such as Entropic Communications, Fusion Medical, Polycom, and Veritas Software. Successful venture investments include Commerce One,Intertrust, Interwoven, and 2Wire.
Gene graduated from Cornell in 1972 with a BS in Electrical Engineering. He then worked for 3 years as a design engineer and in product marketing for manufacturers of electronic components and subsystems. After receiving his MBA in Finance from the Wharton School in 1977, he joined McKinsey & Company in Los Angeles. He was a member of McKinsey's worldwide electronics industry practice group, and was resident in the Amsterdam, Netherlands office in 1979 and 1980. In 1983, Gene joined the investment management firm of Weiss, Peck and Greer in San Francisco, and became a partner in its venture capital group in 1984, and a partner in the parent firm in 1987. During his 11 years with Weiss, Peck & Greer, he made venture investments in 16 companies and was responsible for 11 other investments.
More info: http://www.webercapital.com/team.html
Jim Weisenstein: President, Graystone Consulting LLCClick to Open
Jim Weisenstein has 31 years of industry experience in building and managing businesses. As President of Graystone Consulting LLC, Jim is committed to facilitating the growth of entrepreneurial ventures in Northern California by providing business coaching, capital, and ongoing corporate governance. Jim is also currently an investor and board member for several new businesses in the region including Lighthouse Bank, a business-focused community bank, and NextSpace Inc., a co-working and innovation business community.
From 2004-2007, Jim worked as part time instructor at California State University Monterey Bay, developing and teaching "Venture Formation and Financing", "Project Management" and "Financial Accounting" to undergraduates and graduates. Also during this period, Jim served as a Small Business Development Center counselor at the SBA funded regional center in Aptos, CA.
From 1998-2004, Jim invested in over 20 new ventures as a member of The Angel's Forum LLC in Palo Alto, CA. For three of these investments, Jim also served as a board member. Jim guided Luxxon Corporation, a mobile market image processing venture, through product development and series A/B financing; Jim helped Guardian Angel LLC through the launch and ramp of the first consumer market blood alcohol test product; and Jim led Light Engineering, a supplier of innovative motor/generator solutions, through product development and introduction while acting as interim Chief Operating Officer. Finally, in 1998 Jim co-founded Calle Cielo Cellars, leading the California wine venture to successful acquisition in 2001.
From 1979-1998, at Intel Corporation, Jim lead business and engineering teams chartered with the development, introduction and ramp of microprocessor, communications and memory products. Jim's work at Intel included the following:
- Leading the team chartered to deliver the mechanical, thermal and electrical interfaces for the new generation 64 bit microprocessor (Itanium);
- Managing the development of a 30 million PC Card faxmodem business in the Communications Products Division;
- Co-founding a new business unit chartered to deliver Intel Flash (nonvolatile memory) technology to the market in the form of PC Card products, including successfully launching and ramping the business to $20 M in revenue;
- Managing EPROM (semiconductor nonvolatile memory) product operations (200 people) responsible for yield improvement, cost reduction, design, delivery, and total quality management. (Intel maintained a profitable number one market share position in a highly competitive commodity marketplace during this period.);
- Serving as President and Board Member of the Personal Computer Memory Card International Association, during which time he grew the association from 15 to over 500 member companies while developing and releasing the PC Card standard for portable computing. As President, Jim managed a $4M operations budget through a full-time Executive Director and staff of 14 employees.
Jim received his BSEE and MEEE from Cornell University. He currently resides in Northern California with his wife and three daughters.
David Welch: Chief Development Officer, Infinera, Inc.Click to Open
Dr. Welch is currently the Chief Development Officer (CDO) of Infinera Inc. responsible for all engineering functions of the company. Infinera is a fiber optics systems business striving to create a revolutionary change in the fiber optics market through innovation.
Dr. Welch received his BSEE degree from The University of Delaware in 1981 and his Ph.D. degree from Cornell University in 1985. In January of 1985 Dr. Welch joined SDL, Inc. as a research scientist. Dr. Welch was promoted to Vice President of R&D in 1990. In 1996, Dr. Welch became Vice President of the Systems Business Group within SDL and, as of September 1998, was Chief Technical Officer and Vice President of Corporate Development where his responsibilities include overall technology direction and merger/acquisitions. After the merger of SDL and JDSU, Dr Welch became Senior Vice President for JDSU responsible for technology direction, integration, and business development activities for the amplification and transmission portions of the business. Subsequently, Dr. Welch founded Infinera Inc. in early in 2001. Since that time Dr. welch has been a key contributor in the development of advanced integration technology and the implementation of this technology into the transport and switching systems. His initial role with the company was as CTO and has recently changed his role to CDO and is responsible for overall engineering management.
While at SDL, Dr. Welch has worked on the development of advanced optical technologies for fiber optic communications. Dr. Welch has published over 250 articles and is an author of over 80 patents. Dr. Welch has been awarded the 1992 Adolph Lomb Award from OSA, the 1998 Engineering Achievement Award from LEOS, the 1999 Fraunhoffer Award, and his contributions have been acknowledged in over 17 product of the year awards. Dr. Welch is a fellow of the OSA and a senior member of the IEEE. Dr. Welchs primary area of research has been semiconductor lasers, non-linear optics, diode pumped solid state lasers, fiber amplifiers, fiber lasers, and silica waveguide devices.