Mentors

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A strong network of mentors is vital to the health of an early stage startup company. SOA invites members of our community with expertise in business, tech, conservation, or ocean science to join our mentor program and provide guidance to our ocean entrepreneurs. The SOA mentor network is comprised of industry experts, investors, seasoned entrepreneurs, skilled professionals, and members of the scientific community that have a passion for innovation and ocean sustainability. Mentors share their experiences with our entrepreneurs by leading skill-based workshops, attending SOA events, and hosting office hours both in person and virtually.

 

Mentor Benefits:

-Expand your startup network
-Invest in tomorrow's leaders
-Learn about ocean innovation
-Gain a new perspective
-Connect with other mentors
-Make a positive impact

Mentor Expectations:

-Give honest & constructive feedback
-Be a role model
-Respect startup privacy
-Be active and responsive
-Share your experiences and listen to the experiences of others

 

Mentors

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Adam De sola pool

CEO, Environmental Investment Partners

LinkedIn

Adam is an investor, mentor, entrepreneur and new technologies competition judge with 20 years of experience in clean energy & water and hardware companies. As an Angel Investor, Adam is a Partner in the Clean Energy Venture Group, a member of Launchpad Ventures, and MIT Angels.

Alexander Beasant

Incubator Portfolio Manager, Deloitte LLP

LinkedIn

Alexander manages the incubator for new start-up innovation ideas across Deloitte’s Financial Advisory business in the UK. The process involves ideation sessions, problem identification and scoping, assessment of candidate business ideas, user research and testing, funding and pitch advice, employing lean and agile methodologies to build MVPs, wireframes and prototyping, go-to-market strategies, and growth/scaling advice.

Alicia Amerson

CEO, Alimosphere

LinkedIn

Alicia Amerson is a published author in marine biology, small business owner, and international speaker. She is a visionary with expertise in international marine conservation and biodiversity research projects and drone technology. She earned a Master's degree in Marine Biodiversity and Conservation at Scripps Institution of Oceanography.

Aurelie Vincent

CEO, Embody Agency

LinkedIn

As a public speaker, MC and trainer of conference speakers around the world, I know how hard it is to articulate your passion in order to inspire an audience. The key to being a great speaker is moving beyond traditional training and learning to embody your ideas and concepts.

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Aymerik Renard

General Partner, Hardware Club

LinkedIn

Aymerik is a General Partner at Hardware Club focusing on North American investments. Aymerik has over 22 years of business development and venture capital experience, investing and establishing partnerships on behalf of Western Digital, SanDisk, Orange, France Telecom, and PCH International.

Benjamin Lesage

Senior Analyst, l'Atelier BNP Paribas

LinkedIn

Benjamin is a Senior Analyst at l’Atelier San Francisco, BNP Paribas' Innovation Lab. He started his career as an entrepreneur in Marketing consulting, before joining BNP Paribas Canada has head of Strategy and Project Office. Before joining l’Atelier he was an active actor of the Montreal startup ecosystem and is passionate about greentech, fintech and mobility.

Benjamin Maurer

Associate Director, Pacific Marine Energy Center

LinkedIn

Ben is a marine energy researcher at the University of Washington, where he serves as the Associate Director the Pacific Marine Energy Center, as a research scientist at the Applied Physics Laboratory, and an affiliate faculty member within the Department of Mechanical Engineering.

Bill Sanders

Principal and Managing Director,
Roebling Strauss, Inc.

LinkedIn

Bill Sanders is an business transformation and process innovation expert. He drives organizations to execute on innovative strategy using their existing strengths and unlocking latent potential. Using his proven and holistic approach, Bill rapidly bridges the gap between strategy and execution by identifying the misalignments between strategy, goals, process and execution.

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Brett Howell

Environmental Markets Enterpreneur, Property and Environment Research Center (PERC)

LinkedIn

Brett W. Howell is an environmental markets entrepreneur. He mobilizes environmental and business leaders around shared opportunities, and has extensive experience running innovative conservation programs at locations around the world. Brett holds an MBA and a B.S. in Communication, in addition to being a certified Project Management Professional.

Brooke Tessman

Director of Strategic Partnerships and Exponential Technologies, Singularity

LinkedIn

Brooke introduces and builds successful strategic partnerships. Her experience includes leadership at LinkedIn, Amazon, and Singularity University. Passionate about protecting the ocean, she believes exponential technologies will help solve our global grand challenges.

Christopher Pezza

Consultant, DemGen Consulting

LinkedIn

Chris Pezza is a marketing and demand generation consultant that specializes in helping early-stage startups generate leads, test channels and implement data-driven marketing strategies.

Clarissa Redwine

West Coast Outreach Lead, Kickstarter

LinkedIn

Clarissa Redwine is Kickstarter's Design & Technology Outreach Lead for the west coast. Before joining Kickstarter, Clarissa co-founded a nonprofit with the core mission of fostering the North Texas startup community and worked with 10 promising robotics startups as the Program Manager of the Qualcomm Accelerator, powered by Techstars.

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Dan O'Mara

COO, Circuit Launch

LinkedIn

Dan is a passionate maker and entrepreneur that understands it is that passion for an idea that can change the world. Whether people are creating something beautiful, useful, or intriguing; when we as a community come together to inspire and encourage each other there is no limit to what we can achieve.

Dan Steketee

Pricipal,
Meradia Group

LinkedIn

Dan earned a Bachelor of Arts in Economics and Political Science from Amherst College and spent summers interning on Capitol Hill and at CNN. Now he brings that big picture, global perspective to all his endeavors. Dan serves on the board of innovative startups, volunteers at local non-profits, and is instrumental in helping raise funds for Amherst College’s Capital Fundraising Campaign and mentoring young students and alumni.

David Hale

Experienced CEO / GM

LinkedIn

David’s most recent role was CEO of a mobile SaaS startup, and his career has included C-level and GM roles in SaaS and operations with rapidly growing technology companies. David started his career as a consultant at Bain & Company, and has BS, MA and MBA degrees from Stanford University.

David Hume

Marine Engineer II, Allegheny Science and Technology

LinkedIn

David is a life-long ocean lover. He grew up working on fishing boats and in high school, he spent a semester at sea on a tall ship. After university he worked as a USCG licensed marine engineer on large commercial vessels in the merchant marine. He has spent four years living at sea working on ships. After five years in the merchant marine, David transitioned to marine clean tech.

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David LeBlanc

Channel Marketing Manager, Microsoft

LinkedIn

I am the Business Applications (CRM/ERP) channel lead for Microsoft Canada and is passionate about helping Canadian businesses transform their operations and customer experiences in order to be more competitive in the global economy. I have been with Microsoft for 10+ years and gain a wide variety of skills and experiences in business development, digital marketing, and sales strategy.

Gabriel Ornelas

Co-Founder, Group Seven / dc Media Ventures

LinkedIn

Gabriel builds game-changing relationships for brands and creators, and produces impactful content and experiences that help clients tell better stories. He brings a wealth of diversity management, consulting experience and relevant industry contacts directing hospitality, music, entertainment, fashion, lifestyle and agency clients on strategy, innovation, licensing and brand collaborations.

Gregory Miller

Attorney, Wilson Sonsini Goodrich and Rosati

LinkedIn

After helping launch Google.org with Larry Brilliant in early 2006 as its Managing Director, Gregory rejoined the law practice, and today principally helps technology entrepreneurs positively impact the grand challenges of climate change and global public health. Gregory also work with frontier technologies in media and robotics, such as AR, VR and IoT.

Jason White

Head of Platform, Equity Crowdfunding & Token Sales, Indiegogo

LinkedIn

Jason White is a lifelong entrepreneur who currently heads Indiegogo's Equity Crowdfunding & Token Sale platform. In this role Jason is responsible for building the product, team and processes to enable the next generation of companies to effectively fundraise, at scale, via compliant sale of securities and/or digital assets to the crowd.

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Jerome Nadel

SVP and CMO, Rambus

LinkedIn

Jerome Nadel is SVP and CMO at Rambus. He joined in 2012 to help transform the company’s business model to products and services with “design-led marketing”. Jerome is a pioneer in user experience and service design, which he applies to product and corporate marketing. He has had a variety of chief marketing officer and chief user experience officer roles at companies including Human Factors International, SLP InfoWare, Gemplus, and Sagem. He also advises start-ups on marketing, positioning, and product/service design.

John McCartney

Managing Director, Wise Public Relations

LinkedIn

John McCartney currently serves as the Managing Director, West Coast at Wise Public Relations, a boutique PR agency with offices in New York and San Francisco. Additionally, John is President-Elect of the PRSA San Francisco chapter. In 2013, John was named to Business Insider’s Top 50 PR people in the Tech industry. In 2015, he was named to Hot Topics’ Top 100 Tech PR Agency Executives in the world.

Julie Lein

Managing Partner, Urban Innovation Fund

LinkedIn

Julie is co-founder and Managing Partner of the Urban Innovation Fund, a venture capital firm that invests in the future of cities. The fund provides seed capital and
regulatory support to entrepreneurs solving our toughest
urban challenges – helping them grow into tomorrow’s
most valued companies.  

Kaethe Henning

Director of Business Development, Dragon Innovation

LinkedIn

As Director of Business Development for Dragon Innovation, Kaethe works with early stage hardware companies as they approach mass manufacturing, suggesting resources and solutions to help them launch with confidence that their product can be manufactured on time and at cost.  Kaethe has a demonstrated history of working with early- and mid-stage startups developing hardware products in the electrical and electronic manufacturing Industry.

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kyle lloyd

Program Manager, Emerging Technologies and Startups, American Airlines

LinkedIn

Kyle Lloyd has spent the majority of his career working closely with early-stage companies to help accelerate their growth in the Bay Area. He was on the founding team of an early-stage startup incubation program in San Francisco, ReadWrite Labs, where he helped develop an engagement program that facilitated meetings with investors, suppliers, corporate innovation executives and tech media.

Mareese Keane

Platform Director, THRIVE

LinkedIn

Mareese Keane is the THRIVE Platform Director at SVG Partners, where she oversees the THRIVE AgTech Venture & Innovation Platform. She brings over 15 years of multi-national experience in government, private sector consulting and industry focused primarily on management of environmental and waste planning projects.

Michael Keer

Founder and CEO, Product Realization Group

LinkedIn

Michael Keer is Founder and CEO, Product Realization Group, has over 25 years of experience bringing high tech electronic hardware products to market. Product Realization Group is a consortium of Silicon Valley companies that takes hardware products from idea to scale.

Nathan Hadlock

Founder, Pando Innovations

LinkedIn

Pando Innovations helps startups go from an initial idea to an Alpha launch in just a few months. Our efforts have collectively helped startups raise more than $40 million in seed  stage or series A funding. Core competencies are hardware/IoT, machine learning, NLP, react based apps and blockchain based solutions.

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Oriol Segarra

Business Development & CEO, Eco Intelligent Growth & Rebueno Zero Waste

LinkedIn

After studying engineering, Oriol studied joined The Ocean Cleanup Foundation. This evolved into his full time career when he discovered the concept of Circular Economy and how it can help solving plastic pollution problem. Since 2017, Oriol has served as a full time consultant for private and public organisations and he runs a circular economy business within the arts and culture industry.

Richard Sunderland

Executive Chairman, Heavenly

LinkedIn

Richard founded Heavenly in 2002, following stints with Zenith Media and News Corp. Specializing in ideas that engage an impatient world, Heavenly works primarily in the UK and US and is involved with many of the issues that preoccupy our planet: from smart cities, IoT and Blockchain to millennials and the opportunities presented by an ageing population.

Ryan Schoenike

Founder, OceanCycle

LinkedIn

Ryan is a social entrepreneur with experience building consumer brands, campaigns, and launching new products. Previously Ryan founded an ocean plastic eyewear company and company that makes ocean plastic components for large consumer brands. As a founder, Ryan was responsible for strategy development, social compliance, partnerships, communications, and supply chain development.

Samir Ghosh

Managing Partner, Frontures

LinkedIn

Samir Adams Ghosh is a 30-year tech exec, investor, and advisor.  He has worked at 7 tech startups (3x exits, 2x ongoing, 2x Founder, 2x CEO, 5x SaaS, 3x grown to 100’s of employees and $multi-million).  He has and continues to advise/invest in dozens of tech startups.

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Taylor Valentine

Chief Invention Officer, Horizon Media

LinkedIn

As the advertising industry’s first Chief Invention Officer, Taylor drives invention into every corner of Horizon Media, nurturing a forward thinking mindset and igniting revolutionary value creation throughout the agency. Taylor makes it possible for invention to live on past the ideation phase, empowering great ideas to become realities – for both our clients and employees.

Trond Wuellner

Product Director, Google

LinkedIn

Seasoned product leader focused in the intersection of software and AI with well designed hardware products. I am
a general manager responsible for all aspects of the product development including crafting strategy, building teams, technology development and executing to go to market.

Specialties: Product Management, Team Development & Mentoring, Strategy, Entrepreneurial Execution, Hardware, AI/ML, Networking, Wi-Fi, Linux/Chrome OS, Android.

Vikas Shah

Vice President, Ecosystem, and Partnerships, Taulia

LinkedIn

Vikas brings 15 years of technology corporate business development and sales experience in startup and high growth companies. Vikas is an advanced certified scuba diver, marine saltwater, and reef hobbyist and enjoys playing squash with his kids.