Amir Banifatemi

Amir Banifatemi, PhD, MS, MBA

Banifatemi is an entrepreneur, investor, and innovation strategist. He is the managing partner of K5 Ventures, and currently leads the AI and Frontiers Technologies and Impact initiatives with the XPRIZE foundation. He is a co-founder the AI Commons Initiative, and curator of the AI for Good Global Summit with the ITU and UN Agencies. He has managed two venture capital funds, and supports and advises companies focused on exponential technologies and transformation of humanity and society. He holds a Master’s degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Technology of Compiègne, a Doctorate in System Design and Cognitive Sciences from the University Paris Descartes, as well as an MBA from HEC Paris. He is a regular guest lecturer and adjunct MBA professor at UC Berkeley, Chapman University, Claremont McKenna College, UC Irvine, and HEC Paris.

Imran Currim

Imran Currim, PhD, MBA

Currim is Chancellor’s Professor at the University of California, Irvine and Director of the Beall Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship. The Center’s mission is to inspire innovation and entrepreneurship for the 21st century and provide education about the process and importance of becoming an entrepreneur. He is the recipient of the American Marketing Association William O’Dell Award for "the article judged to have made the most significant five-year contribution to marketing theory, methodology, and practice". Recently, he served The Paul Merage School of Business as Associate Dean of the Undergraduate Program (2012-2014). He has consulted for companies such as Altiris, AT&T, Baxter, Dell, Elcam Medical (Israel), Inabata (U.S. and Japan), Johnson and Johnson, Los Angeles Times, Orange County Register, St. Joseph’s Hospital, Twentieth Century Fox, Warner Brothers, and smaller profit and not-for-profit organizations.

Mark Kono

Mark Konno

Mark Konno is the Vice President of R&D, Clinical and Medical Affairs for Critical Care and Vascular at Edwards Lifesciences. During his 38 year tenure with Edwards, Mark has worked in multiple business units including Medical Delivery Systems, Critical Care, Minimally Invasive Surgery and Heart Valves. In addition to being an R&D leader, Mark has also held roles in Strategic Marketing, Business Development, and Discovery. He is currently the Managing Director of an Edwards acquisition in the Netherlands and also managed Operations for an Edwards acquisition in Texas. Under his leadership, Critical Care is currently developing predictive analytics and decision support parameters which are the first of its kind. Mark is also leading the clinical and medical affairs group for Critical Care which is now conducting pivotal and outcome trials for these innovative cutting edge decision support algorithms.

Nicholas Mourlas

Nicholas Mourlas, PhD

Mourlas is Senior Director, New Ventures at Johnson & Johnson Innovation, California. In this role, he focuses on medical device innovation in support of the general surgery, orthopedics, and cardiology businesses. His charge is to identify licensing, collaboration, and investment opportunities highly aligned with Johnson & Johnson business strategies by building relationships with entrepreneurs, venture investors, and key opinion leaders. Nick’s start-up experience includes founding companies in orthopedics, cardiology, and radiation oncology. He was the CEO of Tarsus Medical - acquired by Integra LifeSciences (IART), and Acumen Medical - acquired by Medtronic (MDT). Nick served as PARC’s Director of Global Healthcare Innovation and as the Xerox Innovation Group’s Healthcare Program Manager. He holds a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from Stanford University where he was the John B. Simpson Biomedical Innovation Technology Fellow.

Raj Nihalani

Raj Nihalani, M.D., RAC(US)

A physician entrepreneur with 20+ yeas of innovation experience in the fields of cardiovascular, obesity, and metabolic disorders, spine, AI, ML, block chain platforms for value based medicine, as well as in the areas of business development & M&A. He also has extensive experience in both large and start-up companies, in the areas of clinical research, tech assessment. Currently, he serves as Chief Technology Officer at Reshape Life Sciences, Inc (NASDAQ: RSLS). Raj is the founder of the Gastric Vest Technology System (GVS), which was acquired in 2017. The GVS has several issued patents involving weight loss technologies, including - gastric restriction, intra-gastric technology, bio-electronics for type II diabetes, and spine surgery.


Len Brandt

Len Brandt, MBA

As a General Partner at Norwest Ventures Len Brandt led the fund’s investment activity throughout the 1980’s in all areas of healthcare. In the 1990’s, he co-founded Mill City Ventures providing venture capital experience without venture capital control. In 2000, he funded CNS Response, providing rEEG medication guidance reports to guide psychiatric treatment. Until 2009, he organized all the financings for that start-up including taking the company public through a reverse merger and associated PIPE in 2007. In the last two years, he has again become active in venture development making significant time commitments to young ventures in Orange County, Chennai, India and Barcelona, Spain. Included are ventures in Botox-like neurotoxins, pest repellency and in-silico platform for drug repurposing.

Jonathan M. Fuchs

Jonathan M. Fuchs, MS, MA, FACHE

Fuchs is a motivated strategic management professional with over 20 years of experience impacting corporate performance by ensuring delivery of effective healthcare services and practices. His specific expertise includes insurance and managed health plan operations, health information technology, data analytics and population health, data governance and liquidity, QIO/REC operations and hospital and facility management. He has worked in a variety of health care settings, including serving as the Chief Operating Officer of Arkansas Foundation for Medical Care and as the executive responsible for HITArkansas; CEO of the University MSO, an executive in a number of HMO and PPO organizations and past Chairman, Board of Directors of SCAN Health Plan. Mr. Fuchs is a member of the Noloki Cybersecurity and Healthcare IT Advisory Board.

Michael Gillman

Michael Gillman, MD, MBA, MS

Dr. Gillman is an accomplished Orthopedic Surgeon who has been in private practice in Orange County for 19 years. He performed the first known outpatient total knee replacement in OC in 2011, well before this mode of practice became common in the US. He achieved his Health Care Executive MBA with Beta Gamma Sigma honors from UC Irvine in 2008. He is founder and chief medical officer of BullseyeOrtho. His custom 3D- printed surgical instruments have been demonstrated to improve accuracy by 90 percent in hip replacement surgery. Dr. Gillman is the joint replacement service line director in a novel program at 7 German Saudi hospitals in the Middle East where he oversees premiere U.S. surgeons in the program.

Richard Henson

Richard Henson

Henson is a medical device executive with over 35 years of experience in product development, design and manufacturing. He has co-founded multiple medical device companies including PhageTech, Inc, a development stage company that is developing novel technology for immunodiagnostics. Previously, he was co-founder and CEO of Source Scientific LLC, a medical instrument and device development firm that was ranked in 2012 as one of the Inc. 5000 fastest growing companies in the US. Source Scientific developed and manufactured products for many well-known in-vitro diagnostic, ophthalmic, surgical and medical device companies. An experienced CEO, Richard has worked with many high-tech firms in biomedical, consumer and critical power industries. He has also worked for several Fortune 500 firms including CBS and GE.

Ehsan Sadri

Ehsan Sadri, MD, FACS, FAAO

Dr. Sadri is board-certified and fellowship-trained in cataract surgery, LASIK, and glaucoma surgery. Dr. Sadri also has extensive experience and a refined technique in performing many cosmetic procedures such as upper and lower eyelid blepharoplasty. Dr. Sadri has delivered over 300 invited lectures both nationally and internationally in which he teaches other eye surgeons the latest techniques for vision correction and preservation. His clinical and research work has earned him honors and grants from the American Academy of Ophthalmology, American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery, National Institutes of Health, Alcon Laboratories, and Allergan. Dr. Sadri is the founder and past president of the Orange County Glaucoma Society and is an active member of the American College of Surgeons.

Arie Shen

Arie Shen, MBA

Shen created a diverse and successful career growing companies and leveraging business opportunities. For more than two decades, he managed and lead software projects, software creation and implementations, and ran P&L operations with sales responsibility for publicly traded software vendors. With his international background, experience and training, he guided a wide range of companies, including B2B, B2C and non-profit organizations. In addition to technology project management, Shen is expert in creating and implementing management strategy: developing and executing market penetration, defining strategies for growth and allocating resources to achieve them, and selecting and negotiating joint venture opportunities. He has operated in Fortune 1000 sectors, local and federal governments and businesses in aerospace, financial, healthcare, sales and marketing, distribution and retail.

Alex Siemons

Alex Siemons

Alex Siemons has over two decades of industry background in medical devices with a focus on innovative technologies and solutions. He currently leads the Discovery and Technology group for Edwards Lifesciences in Critical Care where his team’s mission is to create disruptive solutions for the Critical Care environment. Alex joined Edwards in 2007 and has played a leadership role in multiple product launches and innovations. Prior, Alex has worked in both large and start-up companies where he had generated significant IP. Alex holds a BS in Mechanical Engineering from the University of California Santa Barbara.

Alex Siemons

Shalabh Gupta, MD, MPA

Shalabh Gupta, MD, MPA is the CEO of Globavir, Inc. a biotechnology company focused on oncology. Previously, Dr. Gupta worked at Genentech where his work focused on immunology products with regard to competitive positioning and working with brand teams to create franchise strategies. Before Genentech, Dr. Gupta worked as a stock analyst at UBS covering large cap pharmaceuticals, and while at Rodman & Renshaw, he covered small/mid cap biotechnology companies. His work also included analysis of M&A targets and strategic partnerships. Dr. Gupta also served as an advisor to an early stage venture fund based in NYC and earlier in his career, he served as medical director for early stage medical device and biotechnology companies.

Cynthia F. Kirkeby

Cynthia F. Kirkeby

Ms. Kirkeby is a serial entrepreneur with experience in industries as diverse as design, furniture manufacturing, novelty pet products, and Internet education and technology. Actively involved with the Orange County tech community, Cynthia Kirkeby is an Entrepreneur in Resident at UCI and Chapman University, a BOD member of the Inventors Forum, a Startup Weekend mentor, and founder of Seasonally Fresh & Adaptifyed. For interesting tools, tips, and news of interest to technology startups check out her blog section at adaptifyed.com.

JJ Richa

JJ Richa, MS

JJ Richa is an accomplished serial entrepreneur, executive and investor. Richa has successfully founded several companies, where he served as President and CEO, including a software company for the hospitality industry, an online ecommerce portal for high-end made-to-order gifts, and a custom software development company concentrating on the financial sector. Richa is a private equity investor, a longtime member of Tech Coast Angels where he served as its vice president and a member of its executive committee. Richa has served on numerous board of directors, started a private equity firm and served in senior executive restructuring and turnaround roles. Richa has BS and MS degrees from Cal State Long Beach.

Babak Nemati

Babak Nemati, PhD

Dr. Babak Nemati is currently employed at Plebys International LLC in the position of Chief Technical Officer and also is responsible for corporate development. His most recent tenure was as Executive Vice President of Genetronics, Inc. Previously, he was Director of Surgical Oncology at J&J's Ethicon Endo-Surgery, Inc., Chair of the Johnson & Johnson Medical Optics Subcommittee, Program Director for Oncology Products at Ethicon, Inc., Analyst for the NASA Technology Commercialization Center, and Director of Product Commercialization at Soma Research Corporation. Dr. Nemati currently serves on the External Advisory Board for the Medical Technology Program at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and is an advisor to Optiscan, Ltd.

John Collins

John Collins, PhD

Dr. Collins is an experienced leader focused on scaling innovative medical technologies aimed at improving health outcomes. He has deep knowledge of the biomedical entrepreneurship sector, with proven ability to translate vision in innovative micro- and nano- technologies in cellular and organ systems. At Biopio Systems Inc he has led automations in preclinical toxicity testing, electrophysiological monitoring and cGMP production. He has extensive experience in microfluidics, organ on a chip, vascularized organs, microelectrode array, stem cell differentiation, cell-growth monitoring, immunoassays, point of care devices, multiplexed diagnostics, flow induced admittance, picodroplet processing, blood flow capillary tubes/channel and flow at oil/water-air interface.

Mustafa Kabeer

Mustafa Kabeer, MD

Dr. Mustafa Kabeer is a General and Thoracic Surgeon at CHOC Children’s Hospital in Orange County, Calfiornia. He has trained and is board certified in General Surgery, Surgical Critical Care and Trauma and in Pediatric Surgery. He has been actively involved in clinical care, in resident education, basic science research in the fields of tumor immunotherapy, spectroscopy, bioscaffold for tissue engineering and in the field of patient experience. He has served on various committees at the hospital from Medical Executive Committee, Quality Committee of the CHOC Board, Department of Surgery Chair, PSF Board of Directors (Secretary), and on the CHOC Children’s Hospital Board of Directors.

David González

David González, BSEE, MBA, MSPM, & RRT/RCP

González is a Colombian-born Electrical-Computer Engineer (BSEE) with degrees in business (MBA) and Program Management (MSPM), and is also a National Registered Respiratory Care Practitioner (RCP). He has worked for decades in the medical field in the Inland Empire and Los Angeles area. He has worked as an engineer and project manager for aerospace industry and decades for the US Navy and Department of Defense (DoD). He has won awards and letters of appreciation over his career. González is the chair of the Inland Empire's IEEE Foothill Section, and Vice Chair for both the IEEE Foothill Section's Computer Society and Women in Engineering affinity group. He is an active public speaker and has taught University and Technical courses.

David Cuccia

David Cuccia, PhD

Dr. David Cuccia is a founder, CTO and CEO of Modulated Imaging (MI) Inc., a medical device company originally spun out of the Photonic Incubator in the Beckman Laser Institute and Medical Clinic (BLI) at UC Irvine. He a co-author of 40+ publications and book chapters in the field of Biomedical Optics, and a co-inventor of nine patents describing the enabling MI technology, spatial frequency domain imaging (SFDI), the topic of his Ph.D. dissertation. Dr. Cuccia founded MI Inc. to develop optical technologies that will impact a number of clinical problems in the diagnostic and therapeutic monitoring sector, particularly prediction, staging and monitoring of chronic wounds. Cuccia and his team have successfully raised approximately $13M in grant and private investment capital to develop the company.


Zeev N. Kain

Zeev N. Kain MD, MBA

Zeev N. Kain is a Yale and Harvard-trained anesthesiologist, pediatrician, entrepreneur and innovator. Dr. Kain is a Chancellor’s Professor at UC Irvine Health and has an extensive background in transformational operations management in hospitals and operating rooms. He previously served as the Associate Dean of Clinical Operations and Chair of Anesthesiology & Perioperative Medicine at UC Irvine Health and Professor and Chief of Children’s Anesthesia at Yale University. Nationally, Dr. Kain is well known for his seminal work on mHealth in the perioperative settings and transforming surgical care through the Perioperative Surgical Home and Enhanced Recovery, which improves clinical care, increases patient and provider satisfaction and decreases healthcare costs.

Ned McCague

Ned McCague

Ned has been with MIT Hacking Medicine for nearly a decade, leading more than 70 hackathons in the US and abroad. He is a Data Scientist at Kyruus, where he focuses on using data to drive insights and innovation. He also holds a lecturer position at MIT, where he teaches courses on data science, health informatics, and measurement strategy.