The FedTech team works tirelessly to unleash the potential of breakthrough technologies. Each member of the team brings their own unique experience to the table, ensuring that the ventures we work with in our programs are paired with the best minds in the game. Our team consists of seasoned entrepreneurs; early-stage startup investors, advisors and mentors; former U.S. government leaders in the rapid innovation space; former CXOs; and all-stars.
Ben founded FedTech in 2015 and has led the firm through its growth from a small regional venture to an international company that catalyzes interaction between the venture world and R&D community. He is passionate about democratizing access to deep tech and empowering entrepreneurs. Ben has taught on technology commercialization at his alma mater, the University of Maryland and previously held positions at NBC Sports and Bloomberg News. He holds a BA in History from Princeton University.
Jake leads many aspects of running the organization from operations to business development. He also serves as a Venture Partner at NextGen Venture Partners. He started his career as a US Army Officer, earning a Bronze Star Medal. Afterwards, he joined Goldman Sachs, gaining exposure to finance, technology and investments. He holds an MBA from the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania and a BBA in Computer Info. Sys. from Hofstra University.
Prior to FedTech, Robyn founded and led the startAD entrepreneurship program at NYU Abu Dhabi from its inception in 2015. She designed a unique corporate sprint accelerator program with partners including GE, Oracle, Etihad and ADNOC that has served over 100 global startups, which have raised more than $50M. Before moving to the UAE, she was a former trial attorney in New York. Ms. Brazzil holds a BSBA and BA in Psychology from UNC-Chapel Hill and J.D. from Fordham University School of Law.
Lindsey oversees company-wide operational components such as accounting, budget optimization, strategic planning, policy design, and implementation of technology solutions. Prior to FedTech, Lindsey was heavily involved in NSF I-Corps and SBIR/STTR Boot Camp activities, supporting 2,000+ teams with customer discovery activities, all culminating in over a decade of program management experience. She received her M.Ed and BA in Psychology from James Madison University.
Mike leads the Defense Innovation Accelerator to empower entrepreneurs by facilitating the co-development of startups around breakthrough technologies. Prior to FedTech, Mike led the Sports Tech and Esports focused Global Accelerator at Stadia Ventures and was on the boards of The BALSA Foundation and the Esports Trade Association. He holds an MBA from Washington University in St. Louis, BA from the University of Iowa, and graduated from the Defense Language Institute's Korean Program.
Ian coordinates and supports FedTech’s programs and operations. He has robust experience working with universities and federal laboratories. Before joining FedTech, he was a scientific research specialist at NIST. He received his PhD from UCal, Berkeley. He received his BS from Korea University.
Prior to joining FedTech, Thomas received his PhD in Physics - Materials Science from the Australian National University and then worked as a research scientist at the Carnegie Institution for Science’s Geophysical Laboratory. As part of the technology sourcing team, he coordinates with inventors and technology transfer partners on IP portfolio analysis and technology sourcing for FedTech’s Startup Studio programs.
Thom leverages experiential coaching and learning to empower scientists, inventors and researchers to be more entrepreneurial and commercialize services. As a strategist, innovator, and design researcher with 20 years experience with companies in different stages of growth, Thom has successfully lead dozens of new product development, launch and improvement efforts. Thom received his MBA from Northeastern University and completed Stanford’s Innovation and Entrepreneurship program.
Lavinder leads FedTech’s civilian agency and commercial portfolio, which launches and builds startup companies out of leading USG research institutions, including the DoE, NOAA, and NASA. He has a 20 year career focused around innovation and disruption, with functional experience in engineering, strategy, product, and business development. He holds a BSE from the University of Michigan as well as an MBA from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management.
Tulsi is FedTech’s Head of Los Angeles Office where she oversees multiple innovation programs and offerings. Previously, she was the Director of Innovation and Partnerships at VentureFuel where she ran innovation programs for Fortune 500 companies and led executive briefings focused on blue ocean opportunities and startup partnerships.
Anya works on the Corporate Venture and Startup Studios programs, leveraging her technical expertise and experience supporting startups with prototyping and business strategy. In addition to completing a Fulbright research fellowship in Germany, Anya earned a Physics BS and a German BA from Creighton University, as well as her PhD in Bioengineering from MIT.
Crystal is a human-centered thinker with 15 years of experience in higher education launching and designing new academic programs/curriculums. During her time at the Maryland Institute College of Art, she launched the MPS User Experience Design program and lead/supervised the dual degree MA/MBA Design Leadership program focused on design thinking and the human-centered design approach. She transitioned out of higher ed to get more involved in mission-based work with organizations.
Aesha works on FedTech’s Startup Studio program. Aesha brings multi-sector finance and operational expertise from her years in government, private sector, startups and social impact organizations. Aesha sits on the Virginia Council on Women, an advisory board to the governor. She holds a Master’s in Nonprofit Leadership from the University of Pennsylvania, MBA from DeSales University, and BS in Finance and Economics from Drexel University.
Greta brings her passion for entrepreneurship to the Homeland Security Startup Studio. She leverages her startup expertise cultivated from working for startups in the technology, medical device and healthcare spaces. Prior to joining FedTech, she also worked in consulting and market research. Greta holds an MBA from the University of North Carolina and a BA from the University of Michigan.
Ellen manages the growing community of entrepreneurs, mentors, advisors, and partners for FedTech. Ellen has experience in small business resource and funding, network building, and relationship management from years in local government and global non-profit organizations. Ellen sits on the SXSW Pitch Advisory Board. She holds a Masters in International Development degree from the University of Pittsburgh and a B.A. from Rhodes College.
Ish coordinates and supports FedTech’s programs and operations co-developing startups around breakthrough technologies. Before joining FedTech, Ish served as the COO for a global EduTech startup. He graduated from the National University of Singapore with a degree in Engineering with a specialization in Engineering Entrepreneurship from the University of Pennsylvania.
Gunnar works to facilitate the acceleration of military technologies in coordination with xTechSearch. Gunnar graduated from Franklin and Marshall in 2018 with a B.A. in Biology. After college he worked as an analyst at a biotechnology accelerator/incubator where he interviewed and performed diligence on medical device and pharmaceutical companies.
John has a broad background in product management, new product development, and consulting with startups that he leverages to help innovative businesses thrive. He has helped develop the initial strategy for a seed-stage startup, managed a product with millions of users for a large health system, and consulted with a wide range of companies in industries ranging from blockchain to film production. He graduated from the University of Pittsburgh with a degree in Philosophy.
Justin serves as an Associate on the Technology Partnerships team at FedTech where he actively identifies and explores innovative technologies to enhance various programs within the organization. As a 20-year Air Force veteran, Justin retired as a Senior Non-Commissioned Officer, having acquired expertise in engineering installation, nuclear enterprise management, audio/video production studio engineering, and tactical communications.
Jace is a member of the Tech Partnerships Team. He enjoys working with scientists to better understand how their technology can be transferred from a concept or prototype in a lab to a product that can make an impact. He previously worked in market research and technology licensing at University of Arizona. He holds a BS in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology from Hardin-Simmons, an MS in Biotechnology from Texas Tech University Health Sciences, and an MBA from Texas Tech University.
Robert brings his passion for government and innovation to the Startup Studio team as an Analyst for the Homeland Security Startup Studio. He graduated with a BA in Interdisciplinary Studies: Communications, Legal Institutions, Economics, and Government and a minor in Entrepreneurship from American University. While earning his degree he developed business models and conducted customer discovery interviews using the Lean Start-Up Model, participating in American University’s I-CORPS cohort.
As part of Stephanie's role at FedTech, she is committed to organizational excellence through her work. Before joining FedTech, Stephanie worked in finance and research. She graduated with a double major in Finance and Management from the University of Houston and a Masters's in Liberal Arts from Harvard University.
David leverages his DoD knowledge to help entrepreneurs address the unique challenges of the Warfighter in the Technical and Business Assistance Program. During his 20 years of service, David developed a comprehensive background in operational planning, team leadership, and communication, with a strong aptitude for mastering new technologies. He holds a BA in Organizational Management from the University of Arizona Global Campus.
Lily is a member of the Technology Partnerships team. Prior to joining Fedtech, she worked as an IPO data analyst at Renaissance Capital conducting market research, and as an engineering Co-Op student at GEA researching salt elutriation columns. Lily graduated from The Johns Hopkins University, where she received her BS and MSE in Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering.
Eric’s work at FedTech primarily centers around Department of Defense related projects. Eric is a retired U.S. Air Force Master Sergeant with over 20 years of experience as an Intelligence Analyst. He has an AAS in Intelligence Studies and a B.S. in Criminal Justice from the University of Maryland Global Campus.
As a Recruiter, Ramya’s role is to identify and bring on the best talent pool to FedTech as well as ensure a great hiring experience. Prior to FedTech, she performed a wide range of HR functions across industries such as energy, healthcare, and consumer goods. Ramya holds a Bachelor's in Information Technology from Anna University and a Master's in Human Resources Management from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.
Jake is a part of the Technology Partnerships team. Prior to joining FedTech, he worked for the finance team on a US Senate campaign, was a fellow for a DC-based non-profit focused on international trade policy, and has experience at startups in the fintech and semiconductor sectors. Jake graduated from The Johns Hopkins University with a BSc in Mechanical Engineering.
As a member of the Human Resources team, Zac spends his day serving as a resource to employees, ensuring they have all of the tools they need to be successful. Zac holds a B.S. in Healthcare Management from the University of Alabama at Birmingham and he is currently pursuing a M.S. in Human Resources Management from Troy University.
Johan primarily supports the Defense and Aerospace Portfolios through the acceleration of military technologies, building strong partnerships, and the development/execution of stakeholder engagement. Johan has experience as a multi-founder in the areas of philanthropy and small business. He is passionate about missiles and weapons and the development of military technology.
Cole supports Startup Studio and data management. He has experience in entrepreneurship, previously starting a company and an organization in college. He holds a Bachelor's degree in Economics and Entrepreneurship from Pennsylvania State University.
Aidan joins FedTech with experience in entrepreneurship, having built products around AI technologies. He has a passion for using technology to solve seemingly intractable problems. Aidan is a graduate of the Engineering/MBA program at Syracuse University, where he developed medical device prototypes, pitched in startup competitions, and mentored student entrepreneurs through all aspects of venture creation.
Emmanuel supports FedTech’s programs through content development, client support, and logistics management. Prior to joining FedTech, Emmanuel conducted academic and market research and recently helped coordinate an international entrepreneurship conference. Emmanuel graduated from the George Washington University with a BS in International Business and Entrepreneurship.
Geoff spent 28 years as a Foreign Service Office at the US Department of State working on critical foreign policy and national security challenges, serving as a US diplomat in Europe and the Middle East. He moved to the private sector in 2018 to advise technology companies how to do business with the federal government. Geoff has mentored startups with FedTech since 2018 and supports the Accelerators team on several xTech accelerator programs.
Christian supports a range of projects for the U.S. Army and Bureau of Reclamation. Christian graduated with a B.S. in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Virginia. Prior to FedTech, Christian conducted research for a biomaterials startup, led diversity initiatives, and started a successful nonprofit.
James works to develop and advance policy initiatives that democratize access to technology and unlock the benefits of that technology to enrich the lives of every person on the planet. He served more than a decade as Chief of Staff to Virginia Congressman Gerry Connolly and has spent his career working at the intersection of government and technology. He holds a BA in Politics from New York University.
Michael has had the benefit of being part of numerous business journeys throughout his nearly 30 years as an entrepreneur. He graduated from the University of Maryland with a degree in Electrical Engineering. He was a co-founder and VP of Sales of AIB Software, a software tools company, a co-founder and CEO of LocalEyes, a search engine technology company, and a co-founder and CEO of Cryptonite, a cyber security company. He is now the managing partner of NexLevelBCS.
Dr. Michael Paley served in many roles in Aptima, Inc: CEO; President; EVP; SVP, Business Development; and VP, Government Programs. He currently serves as Director of Aptima, Inc. He is a Human Factors Psychologist and a member of the APA. He received a PhD in Industrial Organizational Psychology from the University of Connecticut and a BA in Psychology from the University of Rochester.
Dr. Ali Andalibi is the Associate Dean for Research in the College of Science at George Mason University and a member of the faculty of the Department of Biology. Dr. Andalibi received his PhD from the Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics at UCLA and later joined the faculty in the Department of Medicine in UCLA.
Andy is an experienced sales, business development and product management executive with a focus on creating new high tech businesses. A co-founder of Group Logic, he helped grow the company’s base of customers to more than 10,000 globally on the way to its strategic acquisition by Acronis in 2012. Andy earned a BSE in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from Princeton University.
Paula is an innovative and resourceful professional with a broad skillset and network developed over 30 years of leadership in academia and innovation ecosystems, both in the U.S. and abroad. As Director of Business Development at the MIT Media Lab, she connected corporates with researchers advancing technology. Paula received her BA from Brown University and her Master in City Planning from MIT.
Trang serves as the Executive Director of the Venture Lab at the Wharton School of Business. She has led global, matrixed teams of 50+ to help Federal agencies, international development organizations, and nonprofits invest in tech ventures, bring new products to market, and drive large-scale business transformations. She received her BA from Swarthmore College and an MBA from the Wharton School.
Jim is a seasoned technology and investment professional with a focus on companies that can have a positive impact on the national security sector. As the Managing Partner of Lavrock Ventures and Founding Member of Blu Venture Investors, he spends a significant amount of his time scouting for world-class, game-changing technology. He has taught entrepreneurship and early stage investing at Georgetown University (since 2001) and Notre Dame.
Don has 30+ years of experience with innovation in science and technology. As former Director of the Strategic Technology Office at DARPA, he created and led initiatives that transitioned science and technology programs to operational customers. Don is currently the Director of Innovation and Partnerships at the University of Maryland. He received a BS and MS From Clarkson University and a MS from Johns Hopkins University. He is a veteran of the US Army.