Board of Directors

Jackie DiMonte, Max Lynch, Forrest Woolworth, Scott Resnick, Mark Richardson, Anne Smith, Kelly Ehlers,
Laura Strong, Terry Sivesind, Troy Vosseller


FORREST WOOLWORTH, Chair.  Forrest has been a champion of all things entrepreneurial in Madison and a leader in our startup community. He is COO of PerBlue, a mobile gaming startup company started from a college apartment that now employs 40 people and entertains millions around the world. Forrest is also the Co-Founder of Capital Entrepreneurs, is on the organizing committee for the Forward Festival, and is a founding member of the Wisconsin Games Alliance. Forrest is a 2009 graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a double major in Computer Engineering and Computer Science. (LI)

PAM CHRISTENSON, Vice Chair.  Pam is the Economic Development Director at Madison Gas and Electric (MGE). Prior to joining MGE, she was the Director of the Bureau of Entrepreneurship and Technology at the Department of Commerce, and the Director of Public Affairs for the Wisconsin Petroleum Marketers and Convenience Store Association. Pam is also a co-owner of a family-owned restaurant on Madison’s Lake Waubesa. (LI)

Anne Smith, Secretary.  Anne is a co-founder and Director of the Law & Entrepreneurship Clinic at the University of Wisconsin Law School. She previously served as the General Counsel for Winterthur U.S. Holdings Inc. and Promega Corporation. She also runs a small family business and has serves on a variety of nonprofit boards of directors. (LI)

Terry Sivesind, Treasurer. Terry is an established entrepreneurial leader, whose background includes early stage involvement at Promega, PanVera, Mirus, Takara Bio USA, Metabiologics, Renovar, Poseidon Probes, and Cellectar. In addition to being a StartingBlock Founding Member, Terry also co-founded Wisconsin’s first angel network, Wisconsin Investment Partners along with MERLIN Mentors and MadWorks seed business accelerator.


JACKIE DiMONTE is a Senior Associate at Hyde Park Venture Partners in 2016. She began her career as a consultant at Accenture in the Business & Technology practice, focused on ERP (enterprise resource planning) software and SaaS enablement projects. After Accenture, she joined Silver Spring Networks, an IoT company for critical infrastructure, driving development and pilot projects for emerging smart city technology. She holds a B.S. in General Engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. (LI)

KELLY EHLERS is Founder/President of Ideas That Evoke.  As a pioneer in the social marketing space, Kelly’s entrepreneurial vision disrupted the industry in 2009 when she founded Ideas That Evoke to offer innovative brand solutions at the speed of the marketplace. Since then, her Madison, WI-based agency has earned national recognition including rankings on both the Inc. 500 and Inc. 5000 lists—naming Evoke the #23 Fastest-Growing Marketing Agency in the Country and the #4 Fastest-Growing Private Company in WI in 2016—and multiple listings among Entrepreneur Magazine’s 360 Best Entrepreneurial Companies in America. Kelly shares her expertise as a contributor to Forbes and Inc., among other publications, and as a member of the Young Entrepreneur Council. (LI)

KATHLEEN GALLAGHER is Executive Director of the Milwaukee Institute, a not-for-profit that helps forward-thinking Midwesterners learn, connect, and unlock the potential of advanced technologies and high-growth businesses to help our region thrive.  She is also a Pulitzer Prize winning journalist who covered technology, entrepreneurship and investments for over two decades for the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. (LI)

PETER GUNDER is Chief Business Development Officer for American Family Insurance and is the executive responsible for AmFam Ventures, American Family’s venture capital fund. Prior to joining American Family in 2008 was co-founder, chief investment officer and managing director of Cardinal Investment Advisors in Chicago. He began his career at Procter & Gamble and Atlantic Richfield (now BP, plc). Peter earned a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from Stanford University, later receiving an MBA in Finance from the University of Chicago Graduate School of Business. Peter is a chartered financial analyst (CFA). (LI)

ISRAEL LOPEZ is the founder of AkuComm Sports, a SaaS company that has built a communication and engagement platform for college athletic departments and sports organizations, such as the Career Mentor Connect and the Alumni Connect. He is also a M&A and securities attorney working specifically with technology companies. Israel was the youngest honoree in both the 2016 InBusiness 40 Under 40 in Madison and the 2017 Most Powerful Latinos in Wisconsin lists.  (LI)

MARK RICHARDSON is CEO and founder of GigBlender, a software tool that allows employers to incorporate their diversity values when finding and attracting talent. Mark is also President of Unfinished Business, which helps professionals prepare for, navigate, and accelerate career transition. Before stepping into entrepreneurship, Mark served as Vice President of Workforce Development at the Urban League, Division Administrator for the Wisconsin Department of Commerce’s Housing and Community Development program, and Deputy Secretary for Wisconsin Department of Tourism. (LI)

MAX LYNCH is the co-founder and CEO of Ionic, Madison-based creator of mobile app development technology used by millions of developers around the world. Max graduated from UW-Madison with a degree in Computer Science, was listed as Forbes’ 30 Under 30, and is a fan of football (soccer), film photography, and trying to learn math. (LI)

SCOTT RESNICK is the Chief Operating Officer of Hardin Design & Development, a nationally recognized web application and product development firm. For the last 10 years, Scott has provided technical services to companies like Mercedes Benz, Coleman Campers, and Sony Interactive. Scott was a two-term member of the Madison City Council, and served on the Plan Commission and Economic Development Committee.  Scott is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin – Madison.  (LI)

LAURA STRONG is the CEO and Founder of Propogate Health, a problem-oriented innovation network built around a core of advisors & entrepreneurs from healthcare, life sciences, & technology. She previously started and led a cancer drug development company that advanced a drug into a Phase I clinical trial in patients. Laura is also an Adjunct Professor at the UW-Madison, School of Medicine and Public Health. She has a PhD in Organic Chemistry from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. (LI)

TROY VOSSELLER is the co-Founder of gener8tor ( – a nationally ranked, concierge startup accelerator. Prior to launching gener8tor, Troy served as a Clinical Assistant Professor/Supervising Attorney at the UW Law School’s Law & Entrepreneurship Clinic and founded the T-shirt company Sconnie Naton ( Troy earned a BA, MBA, and JD, all from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. (LI)

KEITH WITEK is Associate General Counsel and Director of Business Development for Tesla.  Prior to joining Tesla Keith worked at Advanced Micro Devices where he managed corporate strategy, new business ventures, corporate strategic alliances, business development, M&A and asset deals, corporate R&D, IP strategy and AMD Ventures’ strategic investments.  He has also worked at the Technology Transactions Group of Wilson Sonsini Goodrich and Rosati, Motorola, and Gould Electronics.  Keith is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin with a double major in Computer and Electrical Engineering and Computer Science.  He also has a law degree from the University of Texas. (LI)




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