Innovators-in-Residence

Lepage Innovators-in-Residence are an accomplished group of executives, investors, and entrepreneurs who mentor student ventures, serve as guest lecturers in the venture accelerator course, and offer career advice during set office hours.

Innovators-in-Residence select their own individual titles, which may include designations such as Executive-, Investor-, or Entrepreneur-in-Residence. Regardless of professional background, each is an innovator committed to growing and transforming his or her discipline. This well-rounded group of professionals is equipped to aid students in any aspect of starting a business.

Current Innovators-in-Residence

Stacey Berger

Current Role

  • Executive Vice President at Midland Loan Services / PNC Real Estate

Career Highlights

  • 27 years of experience in commercial loan servicing and asset management
  • Received the Founders Award from the Commercial Real Estate Finance Council
  • Served as Vice Chairman of the commercial/multifamily board of directors of the Mortgage Bankers Association

Companies

  • Midland Loan Services, Inc.
  • PNC Bank

Education

  • BA in Economics, Tulane University
  • MBA, Tulane University

Freeman.tulane.edu, LinkedIn


 

Wallace Boston

Current Role

  • President of American Public University System

Career Highlights

  • 17 years of experience in online higher education
  • Appointed CEO of American Public Education in 2004, led it to an IPO in 2007, retired in September 2019
  • Invested in Hondros College of Nursing, New Horizons Worldwide, Rallypoint, Fidelis, and Second Avenue
  • 18 years as CFO, COO or CEO leading post-acute healthcare rollups at Meridian Healthcare, Manor Care, NeighborCare, and Sun Healthcare Group
  • 5 years as Manager, Price Waterhouse Consulting
  • Board Member for American Public Education, Inc. (APEI)
  • Board Member for American Public University System
  • Board Member for Hondros College of Nursing Companies

Companies

  • American Public University System
  • Sun Healthcare Group
  • NeighborCare
  • Manor Healthcare
  • Meridian Healthcare

Education

  • BA in History, Duke University
  • MBA in Marketing and Accounting, Tulane University
  • EdD in Higher Education Management, University of Pennsylvania

LinkedIn, www.apus.edu 


 

Timothy Bovard

Current Role

  • Founder & CEO of Search Fund Accelerator

Career Highlights

  • At Search Fund Timothy has helped entrepreneurs find, buy and manage companies
  • Over 20 company acquisitions and turnarounds
  • Adjunct Professor of Entrepreneurship at INSEAD since 2003 and Columbia Business School since 2015, teaching Entrepreneurship Through Acquisition

Companies

  • Search Fund Accelerator
  • CPI Group

Education

  • BS in Management, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
  • Masters in Political Science, University of North Carolina Chapel Hill
  • MBA, INSEAD

 LinkedIn


 

Jim Christian

Current Role

  • Entrepreneur, Advisor to Tulane Freeman School of Business / Lepage Center

Career Highlights

  • 35 years business experience
  • CEO, Founder, Investor & Director
  •  Private Equity / Venture Capital
  •  Corporate Banking

Companies

  • Anschutz Investment Company
  •  Paribas
  • Dillon, Read & Co. Inc.

Education

  •  BA, Williams College

LinkedIn


 

Chris Damm

Current Role

  • Doctor, Cardiac Care Unit at Ochsner Medical Center

Career Highlights

  • Over 32 years of experience in medicine with a focus in cardiovascular disease
  • Received post-graduate training at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City
  • Held faculty positions at several leading institutions including the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine

Companies

  • Ochsner Medical Center
  • University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine
  • Drexel University College of Medicine

Education

  • AB in Physics, Harvard University
  • MD, Columbia University
  • MBA in Finance, University of Pennsylvania

 

John Elstrott

John Elstrott

Current Role

  • Former Chairman of the Board at Whole Foods Market
  • Founder at Elstrott, Maurer & Hunnewell
  • Emeritus Executive Director of the Levy-Rosenblum Institute for Entrepreneurship

Career Highlights

  • Over 30 years of teaching at Tulane University
  • Chairman of the Board and Chair of the audit committee for Whole Foods from 1994-2017

Companies

  • Danos
  • Celestial Seasonings
  • Good2Go, LLC
  • Stewart Enterprises

Education

  • PHD in Economics, Tulane University

LinkedIn


 

Sally Forman

Current Role

  • Former Acting CEO at The Idea Village

Career Highlights

  • Served as director of communications during former Mayor Ray Nagin’s administration
  • Published two books: “Eye of the Storm: Inside City Hall during Katrina” and “How They Did It: Profiles of New Orleans Entrepreneurs”
  • Owner of Sally Forman Communications

Companies

  •  The Idea Village
  • Sally Forman Communications
  • City of New Orleans

Education

  • BA, Louisiana State University

TheAdvocate, LinkedIn


 

Mike Katz

Mike Katz

Current Role

  • Investor/Founder at Tahoga LLC

Career Highlights

  • Technology investor with 15+ years of experience across all stages of company lifecycles
  • Current and/or prior investments include StubHub, Magic Leap, 23andMe, KeyMe, Dollar Shave Club, and ~30 others

Companies

  • Naspers Ventures
  • Alibaba Group
  • Battery Ventures
  • Conductor, Inc.
  • Pequot Ventures
  • Merrill Lynch & Co.

Education

  • BS, Georgetown University
  • MBA, Columbia University

LinkedIn


 

Juan Linares

Current Role

  • Principal with Callais Capital Management

Career Highlights

  • Nearly 17 years experience in investment banking with firms such as Pareto Securities, Teneo Capital, CRT Capital Group, Pritchard Capital Partners and Cowen & Co.
  • Involved in over $15 billion worth of capital markets transactions and has developed a broad network within the early stage to lower middle market space.
  • Involved in a Youth Empowerment Project and sits on the board of Homer A. Plessy Charter School.

Companies

  • Callais Capital Management
  • Teneo Capital
  • Sterne Agee CRT
  • Rice, Voelker
  • Pritchard Capital Partners LLC

Education

  • BSBA, Georgetown University
  • MBA, UCLA Anderson

LinkedIn


 

David Olk

Current Role

  • Co-Founder and Board Member, ShopKeep
  • Co-Founder and Board Member, Voray
  • Managing Partner & Co-Founder, The Founder Exchange
  • Board Member Amper Music, Gooten, and Vengo

Career Highlights

  • Founded and ran ShopKeep, one of the largest cloud point of sale companies in the world raising over $150m of capital
  • Former board member of Kickstarter which he helped finance and advise from earliest stages (founded by former Tulane roommate Perry Chen)
  • Led the mergers and acquisitions team at Barry Diller’s IAC (owners of Match, Vimeo, Tinder, College Humor, Angies list, etc)

Companies

  • ShopKeep
  • Voray
  • BentoBox
  • Amper Music, Inc.
  • Shelf
  • Gooroo

Education

  • BS, Tulane University
  • MBA, Columbia University

LinkedIn


 

Jimmy Roussel

Current Role

  • President and CEO for the New Orleans Startup Fund

Career Highlights

  • Worked for the past 35 years in a variety of startup environments, taking many of the companies from idea to profitability
  • Experience in all aspects of the startup arena from raising money, to building teams, to setting up sales and marketing plans, and product development

Companies

  • The New Orleans Startup Fund
  • MakeBuzz, LLC
  • Turbo Squid
  • ProTier

Education

  • BA, Dartmouth College

LinkedIn


 

Jeffrey Silverman

Current Role

  • Co-Managing Partner Laconia Capital Group L.P.

Career Highlights

  • 25 Years of experience building early stage media and technology companies
  • Holds investments in over 25 Companies such as TripleLift, ALICE, Kik, SyncOnSet Technologies, C3 Metrics and Localytics
  • Sits on the board of Homer Logistics, SyncOnSet Technologies and is a Senior Advisor at C3 Metrics

Companies

  • Laconia Capital Group, L.P.
  • Integrated Color Solutions
  • DoubleClick

Education

  • BA in History, Tulane University

LinkedIn, laconiacapitalgroup.com


 

Stella Templo

Current Role

  • Counsel (Volunteer), Pete for America
  • Associate General Counsel, Global Litigation for the We Company (currently on leave)

Career Highlights

  • Started at WeWork in 2011 as Chief of Staff to the CEO and was its first full-time lawyer 

Companies

  • WeWork
  • Law Offices of Spar & Bernstein, P.C.
  • Kutak Rock

Education

  • BA, Tulane University
  • JD, Tulane Law School

LinkedIn


 

Joe Truhe

Current Role

  • Principal at Jefferson Capital Management & Board President at Elevate New Orleans 

Career Highlights

  • 15 years in private equity, hedge fund and public equity investing
  • Board member/observer on multiple past and current Jefferson Capital Investments  
  • Investment committee member at HFR Asset Management; responsible for the expansion of firm's Asia-focused fund offerings

Companies

  • Jefferson Capital Management
  • Whitney Bank/Hancock/Horizon Funds
  • HFR Asset Management

Education

  • BA, Yale University
  • CFA Charter Holder

LinkedIn


 

Aaron Walker

Current Role

  • Founder & CEO, Camelback Ventures

Career Highlights

  • Facilitated deals for companies large and small as a lawyer
  • Supported new ideas to improve education as a portfolio director for the NYC Fund for Public Schools

Companies

  • Camelback Ventures
  • EXPERTLY
  • Teacher Capital Management
  • The Fund for Public Schools
  • Allen & Overy
  • Teach for America

Education

  • BA, University of Virginia
  • JD, University of Pennsylvania Law School

LinkedIn


Past Innovators-in-Residence

 

Deborah Elam

Current Role

  • President & CEO of Corporate Playbook

Career Highlights

  • Started with GE after graduation as a member of Human Resources Leadership Program
  • Spearheaded programs at GE that support the professional growth of women, including female-specific training and scholarships
  • Recipient of prestigious EPIC (Enhancing Perceptions in Culture) award from The White House Project
  • Formerly Chief Diversity Officer and President of GE Foundation

Companies

  • General Electric

Education

  • BA in Sociology, Louisiana State University
  • MA in Public Administration, Southern University

Bloomberg.com, WorkingMother.com, LinkedIn


 

 

Kevin Ryan

Current Role

  • Senior Executive with Natural Insights, Mission Athlete Care and IdealPaint, Inc.

Career Highlights

  • Sales and marketing agent for IdeaPaint, an innovative product that transforms any space into a dry erase surface, making collaboration accessible and effective  
  • Vice President of Field and Specialty Sales, Reebok International
  • Director of Sales Operation, Planning and Development Tambrands Inc.

Companies

  • Ryan Group
  • IdeaPaint
  • Mission Skin Care
  • Natural Insights
  • Reebok
  • TamBrands
  • Johnson & Johnson

Education

  • BS in Management, Tulane University

LinkedIn


 

Allen Square

Current Role

  • Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Square Button

Career Highlights

  • Led the City of New Orleans Information and Innovation Department from 2010 to 2015
  • 15 years of experience across private, public, non-profit sectors in technology, transportation, healthcare and private equity industries
  • At Square Button, seeks to create job and ownership opportunities for young African-American men and women

Companies

  • Square Button Consulting
  • City of New Orleans, Information and Innovation Department
  • Bain & Company, Inc.

Education

  • MBA, University of Pennsylvania
  • BA in Electrical Engineering, Tulane University
  • MS in Telecommunications, Southern Methodist University

Nola.com, The New Orleans Tribune, LinkedIn


 

Marianne Van Meter

Current Role

  • Managing Director and Founder of Legacy Capital

Career Highlights

  • Actively involved in providing financial advisory services to corporate clients in various industries
  • Previously served as Vice President with A.G Edwards & Sons, Inc., established their New Orleans Corporate Finance office
  • Presented lectures on the buying and selling of closely-held businesses on behalf of Millsaps College and the Cambridge Institute

Companies

  • Legacy Capital LLC
  • A.G Edwards & Sons, Inc.
  • Morgan Stanley
  • Goldman Sachs

Education

  • BS in Economics, University of Iowa
  • MBA, University of Virginia

LegacyCapital.com, LinkedIn