CONNECTpreneur Holiday Networking and Pitch Extravaganza
TUESDAY, DECEMBER 13 5:00 PM ~ 8:45 PM EST
After a successful exit of Attain, an emerging technology advisory and consulting firm,
Manish now focuses on helping seed and early-stage companies in creating scalable
businesses. Previously, Manish Agarwal was President of Attain and helped create it
from a new business to a $250M business. He brings more than 25 years of success in
the consulting and technology fields. He has been a top contributor and advisor to
diverse government and commercial clients around the world, and he has held a variety
of leadership roles in areas related to creating teams, transformational change, growing
new uses of technology, and ensuring extraordinary customer experiences.
Manish has proven experience in global business development, strategic and
operational planning, startups, value creation and overall P&L Management across
countries. An enthusiastic technologist, innovator, and change agent, Manish has
developed forward-leaning business models, including those which leverage Artificial
Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML), and data science.
Prior to Attain, Manish led a business intelligence software startup and its successful
divestiture with a positive return to shareholders. Previously, he was a vice president
and managing partner at Unisys Corporation, responsible for leading its Asia Pacific
business unit and returning it to profitable revenue growth. Manish also was a partner at
KPMG Consulting, where he advised and implemented large strategic initiatives for
public sector clients.
Manish holds a bachelor's degree in Engineering from Pune University in India.
HEA Law PLLC
Darrin Auito, JD, MSE, MBA, is an intellectual property attorney and strategic business advisor based in the Washington DC region. He co-founded HEA Law PLLC, a boutique law firm (Tokyo and DC), and manages the firm’s U.S. practice. Darrin’s practice is focused on developing and implementing effective technology focused business strategies, including patent and trademark prosecution, IP litigation, technology licensing, patent monetization and risk management, product branding, commercial agreements, and corporate due diligence.
Darrin serves on the Advisory Board of the Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council (SBEC) in Washington DC – an influential voice for entrepreneurship and small business growth in the United States and across the globe. Darrin also advises and represents several technology companies in fintech, autonomous vehicle, blockchain, entertainment, and eSports markets.
Darrin is an initial director of GetKids2Code, a non-profit organization aiming to grow the next generation of coders through STEM education. He is also a member of the Fight For Children Honors 2023 Host Committee, which has been a pillar in the DC philanthropic community for more than 30 years.
Darrin is active on the speaking circuit, presenting on IP topics to companies, universities, and organizations mostly throughout the United States, Japan and Taiwan.
Beth Berman loves optimizing leaders and teams. Simply stated, Beth helps leaders who are
learners become their best and grow.
As a teen, Beth helped her dad in his many businesses. And it paid off. After a successful
career in telecom Sales & Marketing, Beth returned to entrepreneurship and found her sweet
spot: facilitating conversations around growth.
As Partner in a recruiting firm, Beth used her innate facilitation skills to help her company
navigate the 2008 financial crisis. She led the pivot to a Resume, Interview and Job Search
coaching firm, growing the company while many other recruiting firms were folding.
In 2011 Beth launched her company, Compellications™ to help leaders strengthen their teams
and attract ideal customers.
Currently a Certified EOS® — Entrepreneurial Operating System — Implementer, Beth has
helped a diverse base of small- to mid-sized entrepreneurial companies execute on their goals,
realize exceptional results, and create healthy, aligned teams who, again, enjoy working
Beth is also a Partner at Clark Leadership Group. As Peer Group Leader, Beth brings leaders of
growth-oriented companies together for in-depth, facilitated learning and a sense of community
among fellow business leaders. She also conducts private Executive Coaching sessions.
Beth brings a unique, dynamic energy to her Speaking Engagements, Workshops, and Client
Sessions. Though quite tiny in stature, Beth holds the attention of even the toughest room and
makes a big, lasting impact on participants.
President & CEO
SysNet Technologies, Inc
Richard (Dick) Bodson assumed overall leadership of SysNet Technologies having acquired the Co. in
2017 and is President & CEO. He is responsible for Company performance supporting federal customers.
He brings over four decades of federal IT services contracting leadership to SysNet, ranging from small
to large businesses, all with successful customer support evidenced by customer ratings and company
Assistant Vice President
Will Classen is an Assistant Vice President at Colliers, specializing in tenant representation, lease negotiations, and real estate advisory services across the Washington metropolitan area & nationally. His expertise is in helping clients develop, analyze, and execute tailored real estate strategies that reduce costs and mitigate transaction risk.
Will's knowledge of the Washington, DC office market, transaction process, lease language, financial modeling, and analysis make him invaluable to his clients and associates. His experience includes successful transactions on behalf of clients, including Perfecta, Global Ties U.S., Adams and Reese, Spotify, TechNet, NetCentrics, BCSE, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, and the American Lung Association.
Throughout his career, Mr. Classen has worked closely with executives across the c-suite, partnering with them on strategic initiatives concerning enterprise risk management, process efficiency, functional transformations, strategy execution, and change management.
Will has a reputation for superior client service and a proven track record of success realizing his clients' financial objectives. He graduated from Clemson University with a Bachelor of Science in Economics and Financial Management.
In his 30 plus years as a senior executive he has led companies in roles of President, CEO, and Chairman of the board. He has raised millions of dollars for companies to drive rapid growth and position themselves as market leaders.
Scott has built multiple companies to national and international distinction, from angel and venture funded startups to becoming the leading provider in the various marketplaces with hundreds of employees worldwide, all while positioning the company as the model of corporate integrity. In 1997, he sold one of his companies to a public company, creating one of the most notable publicly traded companies in its industry.
Corlett's vision and business acumen have made him one of the most influential and widely quoted serial entrepreneurs. His leadership and determination enable organizations to outpace their peers, to grow while others have collapsed, to leverage market opportunities in good economies and bad, and to claim the leadership mantle as the greatest companies in their space.
Corlett is a member of the Young Presidents Organization (YPO) and graduated from MIT’s Birthing of Giants Program in 2001 and is a member of the graduate organization Gathering of Titans which is an invitation only group of 60 entrepreneurs held annually at MIT. He is an avid marathoner and swimmer. He is married and is the father of a boy and three girls.
An intuitive out-of-the-box technology executive specializing in strategic ecosystem development and sustainable growth. Digital innovation expert skilled at navigating the uncertain and unknown. Multiple award-winning thought leader and digital strategist globally recognized for achieving impactful cross-industry collaborations, and for foreseeing disruptive applications of emerging technologies. Expert in the application of ICT innovations from AI, DLT, IoT and data, to embedded hardware and chain-of-trust security to unlock exponential, and often hidden, business value whilst ensuring human-centric experiences. Now focusing on the emergent opportunities at the intersection of clean energy, telecommunications, life sciences and sustainable wellbeing.
A diversity and inclusion champion and mentor to entrepreneurs, currently serving on the advisory board of the H2020 Next Generation Internet (NGI) Trust and mentor with SOSV. Also serving on four start-up and not-for-profit boards and previously served on 5 boards including the National Adoption Center, NYU Music Experience Design Lab. A named contributor to several IEEE ethical AI standards, having published several papers, including the Allternet chapter of the “Enterprise City: How Companies are Changing the Global Urban Landscape'' book.
Washington DC SCORE Chapter
Over 25 years of experience in managing projects, systems, and business processes for private companies and government agencies. Very good at organizing, planning and developing strategies for all types of organizations including strategic plans for nonprofits. Extremely analytical and able to provide insights and direction for startups in areas such as product development, marketing, and financial planning. Educational background includes three professional certifications: Certified Public Accountant, Certified Management Accountant, and Certified in Financial Management. Executive Education includes the Wharton Business School and J. L. Kellogg Graduate School of Management. Some of my past positions include: Senior Business Analyst for Fortune 500 Companies; Senior Advisor for Non Profit Development in Sofia, Bulgaria; Project Manager for Grant Thornton in Washington D.C.; Business Development Manager, Senior Auditor, Project Controller
PVM Company, Inc.
President and CEO, Mr. Ezrin oversees all activities of the firm, with a primary focus on
M&A and Financial matters. He concentrates on developing business by providing the
highest quality services through the insight and experience gained from his diverse
background in accounting, law, real estate and venture capitalism. Mr. Ezrin has over
thirty-five years of experience with clients on M&A activities and financial matters. He
has lectured on the subject and has written several articles for the Washington Business
Mr. Ezrin was active in the Association for Corporate Growth, National Capital
Chapter, being a prior Member of Board of Directors and Treasurer, and active on
numerous committees. He founded and Chaired its Scholarship Committee, oversaw its
non-profit status, and handled all matters for fund raising and annual filings. He was on
the Board of Directors of the Exit Planning Exchange Organization and was one of its
founders. He has also been active with the University of Maryland Michael Dingman
Center for Entrepreneurship, Mentor, the Macklin Institute at Montgomery College, and
is a Maryland and D.C. Real Estate Licensed Broker. Mr. Ezrin has practiced
accounting and law, and has been involved in many business enterprises.
A graduate of Benjamin Franklin University, American University, American
University Washington College of Law, and Georgetown University College of Law, his
degrees include: BCS, MCS, BA, JD and LLM in Taxation. Mr. Ezrin is active in many
civic and charitable organizations, serving on Boards of Directors, Advisory Boards, and
assisting with obtaining corporate donations. Currently, Mr. Ezrin participates with
NABOE, AM&AA and AEG.
Digital Marketing & Mindset Coach
Anne Haack is a digital marketer, writer, and mindset coach, helping conscious entrepreneurs to realize their greatest vision through clarity, strategy, and a dash of magic. Her ability to clearly see the greatest potential in a person/company, coupled with years of experience in marketing, event organization, and personal development gives her the ability to see the next steps and give her clients a manual on how to get there - unique to their brand, needs, and personality.
Biotechnology Innovation Organization
Marcel Kaminstein is the Senior Manager International Relations at BIO.org (Biotechnology Innovation Organization NGO), the most influential Biotechnology Advocacy and Lobby firm in the US. Board positions include, American Club of Rome, Pro Business PAC, and the Italian American Trade Council. Previously, Marcel was the Director of Business Development at Kyndoo until it’s acquisition (now Cipio.ai), part of Bloomberg’s presidential campaign, and luxury division manager at LVMH Starboard.
Paul (aka Korky) is a seasoned management and business development
professional with extensive government and commercial experience. He has led
efforts in capturing government business in all phases of program life cycle,
especially in formulating capture strategy, positioning and developing the “front
end of the business”. Korky is a Principal at XPRT LLC offering end-to-end
consulting and proposal services to clients of all sizes.
Dan Light Consulting
As an early-stage business advisor, I work with owners and other decision makers to resolve
issues impacting business performance. I concentrate on the areas of strategy, process, and
operations. I’ve advised and mentored fledgling entrepreneurs, advised an Angel fund and
worked with businesses in search of answers as a SCORE counselor.
As a serial entrepreneur, I’ve founded or been a principal in four small businesses in remarkably
diverse spaces. In addition, I played a pivotal role in the IPO of a fifth company and have
contributed to the success of hundreds of others in industries such as defense contracting,
information systems, textile production, environmental protection, and telecommunications.
TCV Growth Partners
Founder and CEO
The Pinea Group, LLC
Bei Ma is a dynamic and collaborative global business, standards, and regulatory policy leader with a proven
track record of new business development successes in advancing biotech, biopharma, pharma, digital
health, medtech and global health care. Her leadership spans new business development, global market
strategy, value-based strategic partnerships and alliances, public-private partnerships, global regulatory
affairs, global standards development, healthcare policies, research, innovation and emerging technologies.
Bei Ma is the founder and CEO of the Pinea Group, LLC (Pinea). Pinea provides business development, market
access, regulatory and fundraising services for biotech, biopharma, digital health, medtech and other medical
organizations to deliver patient-centric innovative solutions in the U.S. and international markets.
Previously, Bei served as Vice President of Global Healthcare Business Development at the British Standards
Institution (BSI) Group since 2016. She served as a key thought leader and business executive in BSI Global
Healthcare Business Sector, providing new business development and market access strategy, managing key
global accounts, and building corporate portfolio and new pipelines. She also led and oversaw global health
care partnerships; evaluated and developed successful partnering relationships and strategic alliances with
identified key corporations. During 2017-2018, she led BSI Global Healthcare team winning the UK Foreign
Commonwealth Office Prosperity Fund Award (#FCO CPG/2249/2017).
From 2008-2016, Bei provided scientific and business development expertise in researching, evaluating and
pursuing new opportunities that support the public health mission and global strategy at the United States
Pharmacopeial Convention (USP). Her focus also had been in developing and implementing USP global public
health initiatives and programs in East Asia and Asia Pacific Region. During 2013-2015, she led USP’s Research
& Innovation department winning a U.S. FDA Grant Award (#HHSF223201310209C) for the 1st time in USP’s
200-year history. From 2001-2008, Bei served as a senior research scientist and global product marketing
specialist at Mettler-Toledo Intl. with headquarters in Switzerland.
VectorPoint Ventures, LLC
Mr. Megrath is the Co-founder and Managing Director at VectorPoint Ventures, VectorPoint Impact Partners Fund and the VectorPoint Impact Network, a seed stage through Series C syndication platform for angel groups, angel and family office investors and early-stage companies to connect. He has over 25 years of experience in board, finance and operational roles in a variety of industries and disciplines, including finance, information technology, strategic planning and implementation, operations, investment banking, business development and corporate development. Don has extensive experience advising early and growth stage companies, assisting with growth and financing strategies that are matched to the objectives of company stakeholders. He has performed a variety of services to companies or parties he works with, including providing CFO services for growth stage companies, advising family office and other investors regarding growth capital investing, fund management, portfolio company management and operations, entrepreneurship, strategy development and execution, and other management and/or board level activities. Don is a member of the Keiretsu Forum Angel Investment Group in the Northwest Region and served has served there as a volunteer President of the Portland, Oregon Chapter for several years. He is also a member of the E8 Angels clean technology angel investment group and the Angel Capital Association.
Dickinson Wright PLLC
Jomy J. Methipara is a business attorney who advises entrepreneurs, business executives and general counsel on corporate and securities law matters such as corporate formation and structuring, mergers and acquisitions, contract negotiations, and efforts to raise capital. Mr. Methipara is also well experienced in intellectual property law matters. Mr. Methipara represents clients including Fortune 500 companies, startup companies, technology companies, and individual inventors before the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).
Mr. Methipara specializes in patent prosecution and opinion work, U.S. and foreign patent procurement, portfolio management, and appeal proceedings before the USPTO. Mr. Methipara also has substantial experience in counseling clients and rendering opinions on matters related to patentability, infringement, validity, freedom-to-operate, due diligence, and prosecution strategy involving domestic and foreign patents. Mr. Methipara also assists in patent litigation matters including the development of the technical aspects of litigation, such as developing claim construction, invalidity and non-infringement positions.
Mr. Methipara’s main technological areas of patent expertise include mechanical and electromechanical devices such as, for example, printers, immersion lithography devices, optics, lasers, hybrid and electric cars, digital cameras, vehicle airbag devices, aircraft cockpit design, oil refineries, power tools, semiconductors, computer systems, and medical devices such as ophthalmic surgical devices, other surgical devices, drug delivery and injection devices, and medical packaging, transport and sterilization devices.
Co-founder & CEO
Abolaji is a 2nd Yr. MBA student with American University, Kogod School of Business. He is private equity, and venture capital enthusiast given his experience working with startup companies and as an entrepreneur. He has had experience working in investor relations at "Flutterwave Inc" (Unicorn Fintech) San-Fransico, USA and as a Strategy Consultant (growth and monetization strategy) with 2019 Fast Company "Kano Computing" in the UK. He has also had experience in the area of Program management working with Private, youth, and government stakeholders in international development. Abolaji is an investor at Serial Capital and led the American University Private Equity and Venture Capital Club from 2020 to 2022.
Matthew Philistine is a Business Mentor and an Event Campaign Manager with
Northeastern Pennsylvania Score. He’s also a business mentor for startups on the
Entrepreneurs for All platform. His professional interests include business
development, event campaign management, and learning more about the venture
capital / private equity industry. Mr. Philistine earned his Bachelor of Science degree
and a Master of Health Administration degree from King’s College Wilkes-Barre, PA.
Pramod Raheja, is the CEO & Co-Founder of Airgility, Inc., a leader in artificial intelligence and aerial autonomous systems based in the Washington DC Metro area. He is a technology entrepreneur of 25+ years, angel investor and a longtime member and past president of the Entrepreneur's Organization of Washington DC, He is a graduate/mentor of the Founder's Institute, Mass Challenge US Air Force Labs and the Fedtech Accelerator Program. He is also a commercial pilot with 14000+ hours in 30+ aircraft types. He holds a B.S. in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Maryland and is a graduate of the Entrepreneurial Master's Program at MIT. Pramod has been involved as a Board Chair, Judge and Mentor for the past few years with the EO Global Student Entrepreneur’s Awards, the premiere global competition for college student entrepreneurs. He is the 2022 award recipient of the University of Maryland Alumni “EnTERPreneur of the year” and a 2022 DCA Live “Red Hot Entrepreneur” and currently serves on the Alumni Board of Mindshare. Pramod thinks of himself as half geek and half sales guy and is passionate about how innovative, deep tech technologies, particularly Aerospace tech, can solve problems.
Currently, Michael Riemer is CEO of Vocinity, a video engagement platform featuring fully conversational brand assistants. Michael is a successful serial entrepreneur ( 8x ventures, three exits, and early Nextel executive). As an advisor, Michael has worked with more than 100 B2B ventures across more than a dozen industries and a plethora of technologies (IoT, NLP/AI/ML, medical devices, healthIT, cybersecurity, SaaS, XR/AR/VR, prescriptive analytics, and wireless/mobile). Michael is a proud father of four grown children, an active fly fisherman, and a world traveler.
Evan Shubin has been a serial entrepreneur and angel investor for the past 20 years. He is currently President and Founder of Results.now, Inc., and President and Founder of Candlelight Partners LLC. He is also currently serving as COO of Game Gym Inc., and COO of Leed Seed LLC. He has been directly involved in 20 different launches and early-stage companies. All told, he served as the President and Founder of four different companies, the COO of four other companies, and a Vice President at five other companies.
Chief Marketing Officer
Sean is Chief Marketing Officer for Kapowza, a Creative Agency focused on providing graphic design, website, video, and social media support for emerging brands, mission-based organizations, associations, and more. Sean is a tireless connecter and entrepreneurial mentor who loves to give back and serve as a sounding board for groups looking to grow.
PR Principal Consultant
Cassandra is a Public Relations Consultant with 30+ years of experience helping organizations, individuals and businesses to thrive. She completes projects in the USA in any time zone. And, she works with clients in most industries, including healthcare, education, finance, and with city and state agencies. She also work with other public relations agencies as a subcontractor on their projects.
Cassandra is an Adjunct Professor at Mildred Elley College and at the Metropolitan College of New York. She teaches a variety of business courses including Constructive Action (an extensive writing class), Business English/Communication Skills, Organizational Development, Professional Business Presentation Computer Skills and Project Management.
Prior to her role at TKing, Cassandra developed and executed public relations/media strategies as a PR executive for the City of New York. She wrote speeches, briefings, media coverage reports, press releases, talking points, media advisories, letters to the editor and public statements for the City's executives, including Agency Chiefs and the Mayor of the City of New York. In this prior role, Cassandra also pitched stories, managed events and arranged press interviews.
Cassandra obtained her MPA from Columbia University in the City of New York. She received her Bachelor's Degree with honors from the University of West Indies in Jamaica, W.I. She also obtained a teaching certificate to teach both English and French at the University of London. Cassandra obtained additional training in public relations, marketing, communications and events from the Jamaica Institute of Management and New York University.