our staff

philPhil Weilerstein | President

Phil began his career as an entrepreneur as a student at the University of Massachusetts. He and a team including his advisor launched a start-up biotech company which ultimately went public. This experience, coupled with a lifelong passion for entrepreneurship, led to his work with VentureWell. Phil’s tenure has been marked by his skill for network-building and expert leverage of resources. He has a talent for seeking out gifted educators and other contributors and putting them to work for the betterment of invention, innovation, and entrepreneurship education in the U.S. and worldwide. pweilerstein@venturewell.org

Rachel AgogliaRachel Agoglia | Grants Manager

Rachel manages the grant-making process at VentureWell, ensuring the efficient intake, review, and finalization of all submitted student and faculty grant proposals and competition entries. She ensures procedural compliance on funded awards, manages pre- and post-award processes, and works in close liaison with institution sponsored research staff. Rachel brings to VentureWell over a decade of prior nonprofit management and direct service experience, primarily in the areas of hunger, education reform, and nonprofit consultation. ragoglia@venturewell.org

alisaAlisa Ainbinder | Senior Research and Evaluation Analyst

Alisa is the lead evaluator for the I-Corps™ Longitudinal Outcomes survey and the formative evaluation for VentureWell’s Xcelerator program. Prior to joining VentureWell, she worked at Mathematica Policy Research in their Washington, D.C. location where she was a survey researcher on numerous federal program data collection and evaluation efforts. Alisa holds a PhD in Social Service Administration from the University of Chicago, an MA in Social Work and an MA in Social Science also from the University of Chicago and a BA from Smith College. aainbinder@venturewell.org

Tim BinkertTim Binkert | Communications Associate

Tim earned a bachelor’s degree in English and Philosophy from Syracuse University in 2000 and a certificate in professional writing and technical communication from the University of Massachusetts Amherst in 2004. Tim joined VentureWell in 2004 as an intern and was later hired to the permanent staff. Tim’s responsibilities at VentureWell include reviewing and summarizing grant proposals, writing and editing publications, generating web content, conducting grant performance reviews, and performing administrative and operational tasks. tbinkert@venturewell.org

Patti BoyntonPatricia Boynton | E-Team Associate

Patricia is Program Associate for VentureWell’s E-Team Program, which provides funding, training and coaching for university student-based technology innovators. She brings to the position many years of experience working for entrepreneurial companies. Since she started with VentureWell in 2008 Patricia has participated in dozens of venture development workshops and met and worked with over 300 student teams. She believes these student-started technology ventures are our country’s best hope for the future. Patti has a BA from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. pboynton@venturewell.org

IMG_3562Will Coffey | Programs Administrator

Will provides administrative support to VentureWell’s Programs staff. After earning his BA in Environmental Studies from Skidmore College in 2010, Will lived in southern Mexico, volunteering at alternative-learning organizations, building composting toilets and working on permaculture farms. Since then, Will has served several small businesses in New England and has established his own fitness practice as a certified personal trainer. Will offers strong communication skills and technological competency to advance VentureWell’s mission. wcoffey@venturewell.org

hollieHollie Crisler | Operations Associate

Hollie assists with logistics and operations for VentureWell’s programs. Originally from McDonough, Georgia, Hollie attended Valdosta State University where she earned a dual BBA in Marketing and Management, as well as her Masters of Business Administration. Prior to VentureWell, she held positions at Northwestern Mutual in Milwaukee, WI, Coca-Cola Refreshments in West Palm Beach, FL and Valdosta State University in Valdosta, GA. Hollie is a former collegiate athlete and an Alpha Delta Pi alumna. In her spare time she enjoys 5k fun runs, kickball, snowboarding and Zumba®. hcrisler@venturewell.org

Janet DaisleyJanet Daisley | Vice President, Programs

Janet develops and manages national entrepreneurship educational and training programs and facilitates the development of higher education training focused on building faculty “networks” to promote invention and innovation. She supervises all program officers and consultants and builds external relationships on behalf of the organization. Prior to joining VentureWell she served for eight years as Director of the Commonwealth Corporation, where she fostered social impact by creating and seeking funding for “micro-enterprises” to promote their ability to gain entrepreneurship skills and viable jobs. jdaisley@venturewell.org

Chris DesrosiersChris Desrosiers | Director of Finance

Chris joined VentureWell in 2007 and successfully executes the financial and accounting functions of the organization. He handles grants accounting, tax matters, financial reporting, budget management and compliance. Chris gained his business and accounting experience as an entrepreneur primarily in the mortgage and real estate industries. He recently earned his MBA from American International College and is also a graduate of the University of Massachusetts Amherst, with a BA in sociology. cdesrosiers@venturewell.org

katieKatie Dzugan | University Innovation Fellows Associate

Katie supports the University Innovation Fellows program. Working closely with Senior Program Officer Humera Fasihuddin, as well as Stanford’s Epicenter, she aids students across the country to be entrepreneurial catalysts on their campuses. Katie was a UI Fellow herself. Originally from Mount Prospect, IL, Katie attended Southern Illinois University in Carbondale, from which she earned her Bachelor’s of Science in Management, Marketing, and Entrepreneurship, as well as a dual MBA/MA focused on the nonprofit sector and strategic communication. kdzugan@venturewell.org

janineJanine Elliott | Venture Development Associate

Janine works on the E-Team Program. She coaches E-Teams that have completed Stages 1 & 2, know their markets and are preparing to raise the first equity investments. Previously, she has taught science and leadership skills for students of all ages from diverse backgrounds, and most recently was a co-founder of a cleantech materials startup, Skip To Renew. She brings strategic insight, financial acumen, and a plethora of stories on best (and worst) practices for startups. Janine holds a BA in Environmental Policy from Colby College and an MBA from Dominican University of California. jelliott@venturewell.org

Humera FasihuddinHumera Fasihuddin | Senior Program Officer, University Innovation Fellows

Humera oversees all things University Innovation Fellows (UIF), working with Stanford in the Epicenter. She launched the program in 2010 with a dozen students; it has grown to more than quadruple that number within four years. Prior to this, Humera led VentureWell’s mentoring initiatives, launching VentureWell’s first foray into advanced accelerator-like workshops for student and faculty teams and helped start and grow BMEidea and BMEStart, VentureWell’s biomedical engineering competitions. humera@venturewell.org

Kirstin GadielKirstin Gadiel | Event Coordinator, I-Corps™

Kirstin joined VentureWell in 2012 as the Events Coordinator, specifically focusing on the I-Corps™ program. Kirstin currently manages the logistics for upwards of 25 VentureWell events per year. Previously, Kirstin worked for the Grinspoon Institute for Jewish Philanthropy (now J-Camp 180) where she developed and coordinated the annual two-day professional conference. Kirstin holds a BA in Art History from Mount Holyoke College and an MA from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. Kirstin currently lives in Washington, D.C. and is known to frequently jump out of perfectly good airplanes. kgadiel@venturewell.org

allysonAllyson Greene | Accountant

Allyson joined VentureWell in May of 2009 and assists the Controller in executing the financial and accounting functions of the organization. She also manages employee benefits. She graduated in 2008 from the University of Massachusetts Amherst where she received a BA in economics and she has plans to pursue a Master’s in accounting. She is a lifelong resident of the Pioneer Valley, having grown up in Montague, MA. While in school, Allyson swam competitively for Turners Falls High School and Roger Williams University and is currently an Assistant Coach for the Amherst Tritons Swim Team. agreene@venturewell.org

DSC00942Jennifer Holme | Vice President of Finance and Administration

Jennifer oversees the financial integrity, growth and stability of VentureWell. She also manages human resources, contracts, grants administration, logistics, legal, and related administrative and operational activities. Before joining VentureWell in June 2012, Jennifer served as Chief Financial Officer at the Lathrop Community. Jennifer holds a BA from the University of Massachusetts Boston and a MBA with a concentration in public and non-profit management from Boston University. jholme@venturewell.org

Aria IngrahamAria Ingraham | Accountant

Aria works to support the organization and its staff in all things accounting. Primarily she’s in the business of getting people paid (both vendors and staff) which earns her a special place in the hearts of everyone in the organization. She received a BS in Business and Accounting at Worcester State College in 2004 and MBA in Entrepreneurial Thinking and Innovative Solutions from Bay Path College in 2008. After eight years crunching numbers in the manufacturing industry she escaped to the non-profit sector where she worked as the Accounting Manager for the Girl Scouts of Central and Western Massachusetts. aingraham@venturewell.org

jkjJennifer Keller Jackson | Senior Program Officer, Special Programs

Jennifer oversees VentureWell’s faculty grants program. She also leads the annual conference, Open, which brings together faculty and students from across disciplines. Her experience includes program development and management, technical proposal writing and business development. She grew up in Asia, Africa, and South America and is deeply interested in entrepreneurial alternatives to the traditional aid model of development. jkjackson@venturewell.org

Leann LeakeLeann Leake | Research and Evaluation Associate

Leann manages evaluation databases, administers surveys, analyzes survey data, and contributes to evaluation reports. She has worn many hats at VentureWell, starting as grants assistant, then working as finance assistant before joining Research & Evaluation. Leann holds a BA in English and a BFA in visual art with a focus on painting from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Some of her past experiences include working as an assistant underwriter for an insurance company, copyediting for a textbook publisher and, more recently, serving as production manager for an independent feature film. lleake@venturewell.org

taraTara Loomis | Program Officer, I-Corps™

Tara is the Program Officer for National Science Foundation’s I-Corps™, managing the national course at seven different Nodes throughout the US. Prior to joining VentureWell she worked in higher education for twenty years, implementing several residential and academic learning communities focusing on business, innovation, engineering, science and entrepreneurship. She holds a BA in Sociology from Loyola University in New Orleans, her hometown. Tara also has a MA in Higher Education Administration from the Ohio State University and MBA from Rochester Institute of Technology. tloomis@venturewell.org

Victoria MatthewVictoria Matthew | Senior Program Officer, Faculty Development

Victoria manages the Epicenter Pathways to Innovation Program, focusing on the design of in-person and online convenings that foster the integration of entrepreneurship into undergraduate engineering. Prior to joining VentureWell, Victoria worked in higher education both managing and teaching online programs, and designing and developing new online programs. Victoria loves nothing more than swinging from a trapeze and playing ukelele with her daughter, though not usually simultaneously. vmatthew@venturewell.org

lizLiz Nilsen | Senior Program Officer, Epicenter

Liz Nilsen provides leadership to the Epicenter Pathways to Innovation, an effort to engage with a cohort of colleges and universities to fully embed innovation and entrepreneurship in undergraduate engineering education. She also leads project management efforts for the Epicenter team. Prior to joining VentureWell, she led STEM initiatives in Pennsylvania and Virginia. She earned her BA from Stanford in history and an MBA from Northeastern University. Liz is a native of Anchorage, Alaska so it is perhaps fitting that her best Halloween costume ever was an ice cube. lnilsen@venturewell.org

Kim Noble | Operations Manager

Kim manages logistics and operations for VentureWell’s programs. She brings extensive experience in the management of national programs relating to leadership and business management through her work for the National Federation of Independent Business, Hugh O’Brian Youth Leadership and Golden Key International Honour Society. Her past work focused on coordinating geographically dispersed training programs, applying evaluation data to curriculum development, and developing and maintaining training materials. She received her BS and MS from the University of Wisconsin, Madison. knoble@venturewell.org

EricEric Phelps | Vice President of Development

Eric is responsible for resource development for VentureWell, including foundation, corporate, public and individual funding. He brings more than 20 years experience in nonprofit management encompassing executive leadership, fundraising, human resources, program development, conference planning and strategic oversight. Eric was most recently Director of the Grinspoon Institute for Jewish Philanthropy. Eric holds a BA in Psychology from the University of Massachusetts and a degree in American Sign Language from Georgia Perimeter College. ephelps@venturewell.org


Laura Sampath | Senior Program Officer, Global Programs

Laura oversees the planning, development, and execution of global curriculum and training programs. Prior to joining VentureWell, Laura ran the MIT International Development Initiative where she worked with students, faculty and alumni to develop effective models of engagement in emerging markets. Laura has also worked with USAID’s East Africa Regional mission in Nairobi, Kenya, and has been a Fulbright Scholar and Peace Corps Volunteer. Laura’s international experiences have spanned several countries in East Africa, as well as Morocco, India, and Peru. lsampath@venturewell.org

Angela ShartrandAngela Shartrand | Director of Research and Evaluation

Angela oversees VentureWell’s internal and external research and evaluation initiatives. She currently manages three NSF-funded research projects that examine innovation and entrepreneurship education in the STEM fields. Prior to VentureWell, she worked as a researcher and evaluator in several organizations, including the Young Sisters for Justice at the Boston Women’s Fund and the Harvard Family Research Project. She holds a PhD in Applied Developmental and Educational Psychology from Boston College, an EdM from Harvard University and a BA from Williams College. ashartrand@venturewell.org

josephJoseph Steig | Senior Advisor

Joseph advises VentureWell on its E-Team program. He has been involved with VentureWell almost since its inception. Joseph has worked in a CFO capacity with a range of technology and engineering based startups. He is the founder of River Valley Investors, a regional angel investor group. He is the CFO of Long River Ventures, a Massachusetts venture capital firm. jsteig@venturewell.org


jtJennifer Taub | Assistant Director of Development

Jennifer supports development for VentureWell through preparation of funding proposals, concept notes and communications with funders and potential supporters. She conducts new prospect research, prepares stewardship reports to governmental and private funding sources, assists in coordinating the activities of the VentureWell Alumni network, and participates in the formulation of fundraising strategy with the Development Team. Jennifer has a BA in American History from Brown University and studied public policy at Claremont Graduate School. jtaub@venturewell.org

Kate TobinKate Tobin | Officer Manager

Kate started at VentureWell in April 2013 as Administrative and Accounting Associate. She comes from a background in sustainable agriculture, specifically in food justice working to provide fresh, organic food to seniors in low-income areas of Boston while she worked as Office and CSA Manager at Enterprise Farm in Whately. She produced the 2011 Boston Local Food Festival. Kate grew up in the Pioneer Valley and is a Northampton native. She holds a BA in Modern American History from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Kate loves to cook and has two dogs, Chloe and Niko. ktobin@venturewell.org

Dat Tran | Senior Venture Development Officer, VentureWell

Dat’s passion is to improve life of young people through innovation and entrepreneurship. He has extensive global development experience supporting entrepreneurship in Asia, the Middle East/North Africa and sub-Saharan Africa. Dat is a graduate of Macalester College and the University of California, Santa Barbara where he earned his PhD in chemistry. He also holds a Customer-focused Product and Service Design Certificate from Cornell University. In his free time, he relaxes with family and dreams about his daughter being an entrepreneur someday – to help girls in developing countries create their own ventures and make an impact on their economy. dtran@venturewell.org

Ari TurrentineAri Turrentine | Research and Evaluation Analyst

Ari is in charge of survey administration for internal program evaluation on the research and evaluation team. Her duties also include survey creation, qualitative and quantitative data analysis, program logic model development, and evaluation coordination across various stakeholder groups. Most recently Ari held positions in Austin, Texas at OneStar Foundation as a Fellow on the Texas Connector project and at the Hogg Foundation for Mental Health. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree from Lewis & Clark College in Psychology and a Master’s degree from the University of Texas at Austin School of Social Work. aturrentine@venturewell.org

Jo Ellen WarnerJo Ellen Warner | Director of Communications

Jo Ellen joined the VentureWell team as the Communications Manager in March 2013. Prior to VentureWell, she served as a communications officer and consultant to the World Health Organization and was the risk communications specialist for Public Health for Seattle & King County. She is a recipient of the Gold Award for Excellence in Public Health Communication (New Media) from the National Public Health Information Coalition, and the Mayor’s Champion of Diversity Award from the City of Seattle. She has a Master of Nonprofit Administration degree from the University of San Francisco. jwarner@venturewell.org