At the end of the program, the participant teams compete in an investor pitch contest to further their opportunity to learn about and connect to potential funding and support. The Startup Quest® program would not be complete without the volunteer judges below.
Dr. Peter Brackett has been a senior executive at Fortune 500 technology companies and has been either the founder, or part of the founding group, of 4 entrepreneurial startup companies one of which was acquired by a Fortune 500. He has raised in excess of $150 million dollars in venture capital from; corporate R&D funds, Venture Capital (VC) funds and/or partnerships, and ‘angels’.
Keith Donald is an advisor at TrepHub, an emerging startup incubator located in downtown Melbourne. He co-founded the company SpringSource and has extensive experience in software engineering and business. His aim is to help cultivate entrepreneurship, innovation, and small business in Brevard County. He’s particularly interested in the areas of community banking, affordable housing, renewable energy, and water quality.
Susie Glasgow formed Kegman Inc. as a State of Florida S-corporation in 1999. As President and Chief Executive Officer, she leads her company in providing security, information technology, and sensor systems solution to both government and commercial customers. Kegman Inc. is an Economically Disadvantaged Women Owned Small Business and a Certified Veteran Owned Small Business. Ms. Glasgow is also a member of the United States Air Force Reserves and volunteers as the Director of Communications for the Space Coast Women In Defense Organization.
Jeannette Kraar has created two successful startups in diverse enterprises, the last one being her current company, Performance Management International, LLC which she started in 1983. Jeannette and her team specialize in executive coaching and business consulting to second-stage growth-oriented businesses that have survived startup and want to become sustainable. They build people and business capacity fast, helping clients get the answer and solutions to the question: “Where do you want to go next?”
Dakota Lawrence is an entrepreneur who is a partner & founder of BlueSkye Asset Management, an investment holding company, BlueSkyeNTX, a software development company, and LaunchPad40 Capital Advisors, a seed stage Venture Capital firm that focuses on the start-up ecosystem on the Spacecoast. He has experienced company and product development from idea stage to deliverable several times and is passionate about working with small businesses and other tech entrepreneurs.
Jonathan Lourie is a lawyer and a partner at the AmLaw 100 law firm of Duane Morris, LLP. A frequent speaker on startup and early stage technologies, Jon’s practice focuses on advising start-up and early stage technology and life science companies on bringing their products and services to market and achieving commercial success.
Rudy Mazzocchi has over 25 years of senior management, finance, and technology development experience in the medical devices industry. He currently serves as President/Chief Executive Officer of ELENZA, Inc., an early-stage opthamology device company. He previously served as Managing Director with Accuitive Medical Ventures and The Innovation Factory (Atlanta, GA). As a recipient of the Technology Leadership Award and the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award in Healthcare, Rudy has authored numerous publications as well as over 55 patents in the field of medical technology.
Mark Mohler is a business and tax lawyer with nearly twenty-years of experience representing startups and emerging businesses, venture funds and private equity investors and was formerly a partner with one of America’s largest law firms.
Mona Stevenson is a small business specialist and branch manager with PNC Bank having 20+ years in the financial services industry as a member of the initial management team of a start up consumer lending subsidiary of Met Life, a de Novo community bank, and large commercial banks. She was selected to work with IBM, Bank Operations and Sr Management for a total automation transformation taking the retail bank from typewriters to computers. She took an 11 year break from banking to be a restaurant entrepreneur owning 2 successful restaurant ventures.