Judges

Marianne Bertrand

Marianne Bertrand

Marianne Bertrand

Marianne Bertrand

Chris P. Dialynas Distinguished Service Professor of Economics; Faculty Codirector, Social Enterprise Initiative, Chicago Booth

Marianne Bertrand is the Chris P. Dialynas distinguished service professor of Economics at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. She is a research fellow at the National Bureau of Economic Research, the Center for Economic Policy Research, and the Institute for the Study of Labor.

Professor Bertrand is an applied micro-economist whose research covers the fields of labor economics, corporate finance, and development economics. Her research in these areas has been published widely, including numerous research articles in the Quarterly Journal of Economics, the Journal of Political Economy, the American Economic Review, and the Journal of Finance.

Professor Bertrand is a co-director of Chicago Booth’s Social Enterprise Initiative. She is also a member of the Faculty Advisory Board for the University of Chicago’s Collegium for Culture and Society, as well as of the Board of Directors for the Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab. Professor Bertrand also serves as co-editor of the American Economic Review.
She has received several awards and honors, including the 2004 Elaine Bennett Research Prize, awarded by the American Economic Association to recognize and honor outstanding research in any field of economics by a woman at the beginning of her career, and the 2012 Society of Labor Economists’ Rosen Prize for Outstanding Contributions to Labor Economics. She is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Born in Belgium, Professor Bertrand received a Bachelor's Degree in economics from Belgium's Universite Libre de Bruxelles in 1991, followed by a Master's Degree in econometrics from the same institution the next year. She moved to the United States in 1993 and earned a Ph.D. in economics from Harvard University in 1998. She was a faculty member in the Department of Economics at Princeton University for two years before joining Chicago Booth in 2000
Bruce Brege

Bruce A. Brege, ’82

Bruce Brege

Bruce A. Brege, ’82

Division Head of Mathematics, Computer Science and Economics, Stanford Online High School

Bruce Brege is the division head of Mathematics, Computer Science and Economics at Stanford Online High School in Stanford, CA, which is an accredited high school serving students from the US and nearly 30 countries in a completely online environment using a synchronous class structure.   

Previously, Brege was involved with the Summit Public Schools, a charter school management organization with several schools in northern California.  He served as the founding math teacher for two of its high schools and in various capacities with the leadership group and led the effort to use information effectively to inform educational practices through the development of key metrics and other analytical tools as the organization implements innovative educational structures.

Education is a second career for Brege.  Prior to joining Summit, he had an extensive career in business, including finance roles at AMSTED Industries in Chicago and Genentech in California following his University of Chicago MBA.   Following his work at Stanford earning an engineering Master’s degree in operations research, Brege enjoyed a stint in the dot-com world with start-up internet firm, Schoolpop in Silicon Valley, where he developed data analytics tools and systems.

Clara Brenner

Clara Brenner

Managing Partner, Urban Innovation Fund

Clara Brenner is co-founder and managing partner of the Urban Innovation Fund, a venture capital firm that invests in transformative urban technology. The fund provides seed capital and regulatory expertise to entrepreneurs solving our toughest urban challenges—helping them grow into tomorrow’s most valued companies.

Brenner previously co-founded Tumml, an urban ventures accelerator. During the last three years, Tumml has incubated 38 start-ups, which have created $190 million in enterprise value and launched products or services for upwards of 3.6 million people. More than 70 percent of Tumml’s start-ups have a woman or person of color on the founding team. In 2014, Forbes listed Brenner as one of its “30 Under 30” for social entrepreneurship. Her work energizing urban entrepreneurship has been featured in numerous press outlets, including Forbes, TechCrunch, and the Silicon Valley Business Journal, among others.

Keith Breslaur, '88

Keith Breslaur, '88

Founder and Managing Director, Patron Capital

Keith Breslauer, ’88, founded Patron Capital in 1999 and is the managing director of Patron Capital Limited, the investment adviser to the Patron Capital Funds (including Patron Capital Captive Fund, Funds I–IV). The total capital under management represents approximately €3.4 billion from leading US and European institutions, endowments, pension funds, and family offices. The Patron Funds primarily focus on investments in companies and assets associated with property and property-related activities. In addition, these companies are typically impaired due to a liquidity event or some degree of distress at the borrower or asset level.

Breslauer is active as a patron of numerous charities, including serving as co-chair of the Chicago Booth Global Advisory Board (EMEA), and sits on the advisory board of the Chicago Booth Rustandy Center for Social Sector Innovation. He has an MBA from Chicago Booth, a bachelor of science degree from New York University’s Stern School of Business, and is an accomplished alpinist and skier.

Rich Hoops

Rich Hoops, ’00

Rich Hoops

Rich Hoops, ’00

Cofounder and Board Chair, Impact Hub Boulder

Since 2003, Rich Hoops has dedicated his time to assisting area nonprofits and social enterprises in building operational and organizational capacity. In addition to his work in the Boulder/Denver area, Hoops is actively engaged with the social enterprise sector in East Africa as both an investor and advisor to several early-stage social enterprises. He is cofounder and board chair of Impact Hub Boulder and serves as an advisory board member of the Center for Education on Social Responsibility and the Leeds School of Business, both at the University of Colorado. He also joined the founding board of Impact Charitable, a donor advisory fund focused on impact investing. He has been a partner with Social Venture Partners Boulder County since 2001, and served as board chair from 2004–2006. He also spent seven years as board chair for Blood: Water, a Nashville-based nonprofit that partners with community-based organizations in the fight against the HIV/AIDs and water crisis throughout East Africa.
Marguerite  H. Griffin

Marguerite H. Griffin

Marguerite  H. Griffin

Marguerite H. Griffin

National Director of Philanthropic Services and Senior Vice President at The Northern Trust Company, Chicago

Marguerite H. Griffin is the national director of philanthropic services and senior vice president at The Northern Trust Company, Chicago. As national director of philanthropic services, Griffin is responsible for the delivery and growth of Northern Trust's philanthropic services to Wealth Management clients. She specializes in administering charitable trusts, private foundations and other tax-exempt entities, and counsels clients regarding charitable giving strategies, nonprofit compliance, and risk management, family legacy philanthropy, microfinance, impact investing, and international philanthropy.

Griffin most recently was a senior trust administrator and relationship manager, where she was responsible for the administration of large, complex trusts for individuals and families, including irrevocable trusts, charitable trusts, and supporting organizations. Her duties involved working with sophisticated estate plans, sensitive family situations, and complex property transfers.

Prior to joining Northern Trust as a vice president in November 1999, Griffin was a vice president and trust administrator within the Private Clients Division of First Chicago, Bank One. Before joining First Chicago, Bank One, she practiced law as an associate with Vedder, Price, Kaufman & Kammholz, where she specialized in estate planning, tax-exempt organizations, charitable trusts, and private foundations.

Griffin received a BA degree from Washington University in St. Louis and a JD degree from the Northwestern University School of Law. She is a member of the Chicago Bar Association and the Chicago Estate Planning Council. Griffin is admitted to practice before the Illinois Supreme Court. She is a frequent speaker at industry events, addressing topics such as microfinance, impact Investing, nonprofit board governance, strategic giving, and trends in philanthropy.

Griffin is an active volunteer, advisor, and board member with several civic and cultural institutions. She is involved with SHE100, an LGBTQA giving circle, and the Audubon Society, Chicago region.

Monoj Kumar

Monoj Kumar

Senior Advisor & Head of Innovations, Tata Trusts Cofounder & CEO, Foundation for Innovation and Social Entrepreneurship

Manoj Kumar is a senior advisor to Tata Trusts, where, in addition to his advisory role, he also owns the executive responsibility for all university/institutional partnerships and manages the Innovations/R&D portfolio. He has conceived and cofounded the Foundation for Innovation and Social Entrepreneurship (FISE) to nurture social innovators through their lab to market journey. Kumar is also the architect and chief evangelist of Social Alpha, an ecosystem stack that aims to provide full life cycle, idea-to-impact support to social innovators and entrepreneurs. He is currently raising a social enterprise fund to provide early-stage risk capital to high-impact technology start-ups in the social sector.

Prior to his association with Tata Trusts, Kumar cofounded Malgharia, a boutique consulting firm that helps companies identify and address their most critical challenges and turn around business performance. Additionally, he serves on the advisory and governing boards of a number of companies, including nonprofits and research institutions.

Rachel Kohler

Rachel Kohler, ’89

Rachel Kohler

Rachel Kohler, ’89

Founding Principal, KoHop Ventures

Rachel D. Kohler is the founding principal of KoHop Ventures, which focuses on for-profit social impact investments targeting health care needs in underserved communities. Kohler worked for the Kohler Company for 22 years, serving most recently as its group president of interiors, managing a portfolio of high-end home furnishings businesses. She continues to serve on Kohler’s board of directors and is a member of the Kohler Foundation. Kohler is a trustee at the University of Chicago and the University of Chicago Medical Center and is chairman of the MacLean Center for Clinical Medical Ethics. She is also on the board of LPMC Foundation, an organization supporting music education programs for underserved youth in Chicago. Prior to her position at Kohler Company, Kohler worked at Booz Allen Hamilton and at First Boston, an investment bank now known as Credit Suisse. Kohler holds a bachelor’s degree from Princeton University and a master’s degree in business administration from Chicago Booth.

Vicki Escarra

Vicki Escarra

Global Chief Executive Officer, Opportunity International

Since joining Opportunity International in 2012, Vicki Escarra has led several major initiatives to create a long-term strategic plan, rebrand, streamline operations, and increase global fundraising by 45 percent. In addition to recently negotiating a partnership with MyBucks, a digital banking company serving the needy in Africa, she has focused on education to dramatically increase loans to help impoverished families pay for tuition, books, school uniforms, and other expenses.

Before that, Escarra spent six years as president and chief executive officer of Feeding America, the nation’s largest domestic hunger relief organization, and nearly 30 years at Delta Air Lines Inc., where she rose to chief marketing officer.

She is a member of the board of directors for Centene, a Fortune 500 company serving users of government health-care programs, and the board of regents for Roosevelt University. Escarra has been named among America’s top 50 most powerful and influential executives by The Nonprofit Times for three consecutive years.

John Edwardson

John Edwardson, ’72

John Edwardson

John Edwardson, ’72

Chairman, Advance Illinois

John Edwardson is chairman of Advance Illinois, an independent statewide education policy and advocacy organization dedicated to ensuring that every Illinois student receives a world-class education. Edwardson is the former chairman and CEO of CDW, a leading provider of technology solutions to businesses, government, education, and health-care organizations. During his tenure, CDW’s revenues grew from $3.8 billion to over $10 billion. Prior to joining CDW, Edwardson served as chairman and chief executive of Burns International Services Corporation. He also served as president of UAL Corporation and United Airlines.

Edwardson earned his bachelor’s degree in industrial engineering from Purdue University and his MBA from The University of Chicago Booth School of Business. He currently serves on the board of directors of FedEx Corporation, ACE Limited (now Chubb Insurance), and Rockwell Collins. He serves as a trustee of the University of Chicago, on the Council on Chicago Booth, and on the advisory board of Booth’s Social Enterprise Initiative.
Trinita Logue

Trinita Logue

Trinita Logue

Trinita Logue

Senior Advisor, IFF

Trinita Logue is the founder and senior advisor of IFF, one of the nation’s leading community development financial institutions (CDFI). IFF’s mission is to transform low income and disinvested communities in the Midwest through comprehensive community development activities, real estate finance, and real estate consulting and development.  In her role as senior advisor, Logue leads the regional expansion activities, including market research and relationship development in new locations. Logue serves on the board of managers of ARC Chicago LLC, an impact investing initiative serving northeast Illinois, the board of directors of Reinvestment Fund, a CDFI serving the midAtlantic and South, as well as the Illinois Attorney General’s Charitable Advisory Committee and the Illinois Treasurer's Charitable Trust Stabilization Advisory Committee. Logue is also a board member of the Hyde Park Art Center in Chicago. Logue is a trustree of the Trust/MacArthur impact investing initiative. She brings decades of experience in the nonprofit sector and community development finance to these leadership roles.
Jamie McGurk

Jamie McGurk, ’82

Jamie McGurk

Jamie McGurk, ’82

Consultant and Producer, Off Balance Productions

Jamie McGurk is the consultant and producer at Off Balance Productions, a film and television production company that she started. Prior to OffBalance, McGurk was the executive producer of the 25th Anniversary of Film Independent’s “2010 Independent Spirit Awards,” the “Oscars” of independent film, broadcast on IFC.  Responsibilities were all encompassing, ranging from the show creative (writing, musical acts, talent selection) to marketing, publicity and promotion. McGurk has been a political activist for many years, enthusiastically promoting progressive organizations and candidates, with political messaging and communications as a particular area of focus.  To that end, Jamie and her partner Victoria Hopper formed SeaChange Communications in 2008, and worked with clients such as Starz/Liberty Media and the SEIU, the nation’s largest Service Employee’s Union, to utilize popular culture to further their corporate, organizational and social goals.

McGurk has also served as a marketing consultant for various non-profit organizations and political campaigns.  These include The IFP/West, The HELP Group (Spirit of Hope Honoree along with her husband Chris, former Vice-Chairman of MGM and CEO of Overture Films), The California State Summer School for the Arts (Foundation Board President/Board of Trustees Member), and The Motion Picture and Television Fund (Board of Trustees Member) and FosterMore.  McGurk received her BA in Political Science from University of Illinois (Champaign/Urbana) and received her MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.
Chris Noon

Chris Noon, ’72

Chris Noon

Chris Noon, ’72

Founding Partner and President, Quadrangle Development Company

Chris Noon is the founding partner and president of Quadrangle Development Company, which specializes in the development of office and industrial parks. He has been responsible for the development of more than 800 acres of business parks and 5 million square feet of building space with a total value of over $500 million. Headquartered in Chicago, Quadrangle has projects in metropolitan Chicago, Minneapolis, Milwaukee, Kansas City, Indianapolis, and the San Francisco Bay Area. <

Noon is a trustee of the Ravinia Festival, a past treasurer and board member of Habitat for Humanity Lake County, and the founder of the Beca Medio Dia scholarship fund at the College of Lake County. Noon received a bachelor’s in civil engineering from Purdue University and an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.

Tasha Seitz

Tasha Seitz

Partner and Chief Investment Officer, Impact Engine

Tasha Seitz is the chief investment officer for Impact Engine, a venture fund that invests financial and human capital in early-stage, for-profit technology businesses that are improving education, health, economic empowerment, and resource efficiency. Seitz has two decades of venture capital investment experience as a partner with JK&B Capital, a technology venture capital firm based in Chicago with more than $1 billion under management. As a partner, she has been responsible for identifying, evaluating, and making investments in early-stage start-up software companies, serving on the board of directors, managing growth, coaching and hiring management teams, and exiting investments through sale or initial public offering.

In addition to her investing roles, Seitz serves as adjunct professor of social enterprise at the Northwestern University Kellogg School of Management. She has served as the board chair for Spark Ventures, a nonprofit venture philanthropy organization investing in nongovernmental organizations that serve vulnerable children in developing countries. Seitz is also founder and former board chair for the Chicago chapter of Social Venture Partners.

Catalina Saieh

María Catalina Saieh Guzmán,’10

Catalina Saieh

María Catalina Saieh Guzmán,’10

Vice Chairman of Fundación CorpArtes

Maria Catalina Saieh Guzman is the vice chairman of Fundación CorpArtes. Saieh Guzman and her family founded CorpArtes in Santiago as a foundation which promotes visual arts, theater, music, cinema, education and other cultural ventures. On July 31, 2014, the foundation opened its Cultural Center, which includes a major art gallery and a 900-seat theater.  In addition to the Fundación CorpArtes, she is also the chair of the Descubreme Foundation. The Descubreme Foundation supports people and institutions that work to create opportunities with people who have cognitive disabilities.

Saieh Guzman is a member of the following boards currently: G 50, the International Freedom Foundation, CorpBanca, Fundación Educacional Colegio Laudare, and COPESA (Consorcio Periodístico de Chile S.A.) and was a past board member of Compañía de Seguros CorpSeguros S.A, Compañía de Seguros CorpVida, and La Tercera.

Saieh Guzman earned her Bachelor of Arts in English and Literature and Masters in Literature from Pontificia Universidad Ctolica de Chie, and her MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.
Roberto Servitje

Roberto Servitje, ’13

Roberto Servitje

Roberto Servitje, ’13

Corporate Director, Grupo Altex

Roberto Servitje is a corporate director in Grupo Altex, his family’s business and one of Mexico’s largest agro-industrial companies. He has spent most of his professional career in a variety of local and international roles within his family’s businesses in the food industry, from risk management to marketing. Directly after graduating from Chicago Booth’s full-time program in 2013 he joined Grupo Lacrem as Director of Marketing in Barcelona, Spain, and for the past year he has been based in Mexico City in charge of all of Grupo Altex’s vegetable operations.

He holds an MBA from Chicago Booth (2013), where he participated in the SNVC, and a BA in International Commerce from Instituto Tecnologico y de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey in Mexico City (2008). He is active in various organizations that support urban and contemporary art, as well as rural development activities throughout Mexico.
Unmi Song

Unmi Song, AB ’82, MBA ’86

Unmi Song

Unmi Song, AB ’82, MBA ’86

President, Lloyd A. Fry Foundation

Unmi Song is president of the Lloyd A. Fry Foundation, a Chicago-based foundation that supports nonprofits serving low-income communities in Chicago with a focus on arts learning, education, employment, and health. Founded in 1983, the Fry Foundation is a private, independent grant-making foundation and awards $8 million in grants annually throughout the city of Chicago.

Previously, Song was a vice president of Bankers Trust and held positions at Citicorp Investment Bank in New York City, the First National Bank of Chicago, and Gold Star Tele-Electric Company, in Seoul, Korea. Prior to joining the Fry Foundation, she handled employment program grant-making, which covered job training and welfare policy issues, at The Joyce Foundation. Song was appointed by President Obama to serve on the President’s Advisory Commission on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders and currently serves on several nonprofit boards. Song received her bachelor’s in economics from the University of Chicago and her MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.

David Spielfogel

David Spielfogel

Managing Partner, Ekistic Ventures

David Spielfogel serves as cofounder and managing partner of Ekistic Ventures, a group of problem-solvers actively cultivating a portfolio of disruptive companies bringing new solutions to urban problems. He has nearly two decades of experience at the highest levels of local government, political campaigns, and philanthropy, with a focus on setting short- and long-term strategies for implementation.

Until early 2016, Spielfogel was senior advisor to Mayor Rahm Emanuel, overseeing long-term planning and the implementation and communication of the mayor’s priority initiatives. He previously served as chief of staff at the MacArthur Foundation, where he worked on the foundation’s domestic and international programs, as deputy policy director for Barack Obama’s Senate campaign, and in the Clinton White House as the special assistant for policy to the president’s senior advisor on energy and environmental issues.

He earned his MS in international development management from the London School of Economics and his BS from the University of Michigan School of Natural Resources and Environment.

Sachi Shenoy

Sachi Shenoy, AB ’97, MBA ’07

Sachi Shenoy

Sachi Shenoy, AB ’97, MBA ’07

Co-Founder and Chief Innovation Officer, Upaya Social Ventures

Sachi Shenoy is the co-founder and chief innovation officer for Upaya Social Ventures, an organization that creates dignified jobs for the poorest of the poor by investing in small and growing businesses in India. She currently serves on the Board of Directors for Upaya and on the Advisory Board of the Chicago Booth Social Enterprise Initiative (SEI). Her work has been featured in Wall Street Journal – India and the Stanford Social Innovation Review. In 2014, she was named to the Puget Sound Business Journal's "40 Under 40" list, an honor that "spotlights the top business leaders under the age of 40 who excel in their industry and show dynamic leadership." 

Shenoy spent three years at Unitus, where she most recently served as director of Global Programs and led the Social Performance Management Implementation Project (SPM IP) and Sorenson / Unitus Ultra Poor Initiative. Prior to Unitus, Shenoy served as area manager at SKS Microfinance Pvt. Ltd., leading the organization's entry into the New Delhi urban microfinance market. In 2005, Shenoy authored the business proposal for the SKS Ultra Poor Program, designed to uplift rural, destitute populations. Sachi has also worked at New York-based CDVCA, where she evaluated seed-stage social enterprises and constructed investment recommendations for its Central Fund; JP Morgan Chase, where she worked in the Sales & Trading division; and Price Waterhouse LLP, where she served as a management consultant for the financial services industry.

Shenoy holds a B.A. in Economics and an M.B.A. in Finance and Entrepreneurship with High Honors from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.

Michael Strautmannus

Michael Strautmannus

Vice President of Civic Engagement, Obama Foundation

Michael Strautmanis joined the Obama Foundation as vice president of civic engagement in January 2016, developing and leading outreach and civic engagement programs. Strautmanis previously served as deputy assistant to the president, counselor for strategic engagement to senior advisor Valerie Jarrett, and as a senior advisor to the President’s Council on Jobs and Competitiveness.

He has worked with President Obama since his election as a junior US Senator from Illinois. He became senior counsel for Obama for America and joined Obama’s presidential transition team as chief counsel and director of public liaison and intergovernmental affairs.

He previously served as vice president for corporate citizenship and strategic programs at The Walt Disney Company, practiced complex litigation and employment law at Chicago’s Sidley Austin, and joined the Clinton Administration as chief of staff to the general counsel at the US Agency for International Development. Strautmanis received a BS from the University of Illinois and a JD from the University of Illinois College of Law.

Shelly Stern Grach

Shelly Stern Grach

Shelly Stern Grach

Shelly Stern Grach

Director of Civic Engagement, Microsoft

Shelley Stern Grach is the director of civic engagement for the Technology and Civic Engagement (TCE) group at Microsoft Corporation. Based in Chicago, Stern Grach focuses on supporting long term economic development and STEM and STEAM programs that accelerate the Mayor’s Plan for Chicago. Stern Grach ensures broad community awareness and utilization of Microsoft’s Citizenship and Education programs, including YouthSpark, digital literacy curriculum, stimulating STEM skills and careers for students and entrepreneurs. She leads local policy and thought leadership programs on innovation, responsible business leadership and helps civic leaders and communities harness new technologies to enhance public discussion and policy development.

Stern Grach is a past chair of the board of nonprofits Lumity and Chicago Career Tech, and is a current board member of Forefront (formerly the Donors Forum of Illinois), the Women’s Business Development Center, Thrive Chicago, the ISTC/I Board and LISC Chicago. She is a past Commissioner for the State of Illinois Workforce Board and a past board member of Skills for Chicagoland’s Future and the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce. Shelley’s civic participation includes the Economic Club of Chicago, service on the Mayor’s Council to Bridge the Digital Divide,  serving on State of Illinois’ Task Forces (Information Technology, Race to the Top and Talent), and as a past commissioner on the State of Illinois Economic Recovery Commission for Education and a past board member of Year Up Chicago. In Michigan, she is on the Board of the Acorn Center for the Performing Arts in Three Oaks, and Friends of the New Buffalo Library.

Stern earned a double B.A. at Oakland University in Rochester, Michigan and an M.A. in business from Central Michigan University. She resides in New Buffalo, Michigan and in Chicago, Illinois with her husband, a Health Care consultant. Her daughter is a graduate of the University of Chicago, received her Master’s in Physiology at Georgetown and is a first year medical student at the University Of Illinois College Of Medicine.

Carter Stewart

Carter Stewart

Managing Director, Draper Richards Kaplan (DRK) Foundation

Carter Stewart is responsible for identifying and supporting DRK entrepreneurs, serving on the boards of DRK portfolio organizations Advance Peace, Power of Two, Justice Rapid Response, and more. Prior to joining DRK, Stewart served as the presidentially appointed US Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio. In his work, he emphasized deterrence, crime prevention, and alternatives to incarceration. He created the district’s first community outreach position and established a community leadership committee geared toward building trust and improving communication between the public and law enforcement.

Stewart took a leadership role at the US Department of Justice to address inequities in the criminal justice system by raising awareness about the school-to-prison pipeline and chairing a working group of US Attorneys focused on reducing racial disparities in the federal system.

He received a JD from Harvard Law School, earned an MA in education policy from Columbia University, and received his undergraduate degree in political science from Stanford University.

AndyStone

Andrew D. Stone, ’81

AndyStone

Andrew D. Stone, ’81

Managing Partner and Chief Executive Officer, Petra Capital Management

Andrew D. Stone is the managing partner and chief executive officer of Petra Capital Management. Prior to founding Petra, Stone was a managing director and head of the Principal Transactions Group (“PTG”) at Credit Suisse First Boston. Stone was senior managing director of the Mortgage, Asset-Backed and Real Estate Securities Group at Daiwa Securities America. Stone founded the department and was responsible for managing the origination, trading, structuring, and sales of all mortgage and asset-backed securities, eventually developing the securitization industry, but also carving out a successful niche for Daiwa. Stone received his BS from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania with dual majors in finance and entrepreneurial management and his MBA from the University of Chicago.
Eric Weinheimer

Eric Weinheimer, ’94

Eric Weinheimer

Eric Weinheimer, ’94

President and CEO, Forefront

Since July 1st, 2014, Eric has been the president and CEO of Forefront, the only regional association in the U.S. that represents grant makers, nonprofits, advisors, social entrepreneurs, impact investors and their allies.  Currently Forefront has 1,100 Members and its mission is to be building a vibrant social impact sector for all the people of Illinois.  Forefront provides education, advocacy, peer networking, project management services, and also mobilizes its Members around campaigns that advance the sector.  

Prior to Forefront, Weinheimer was president and CEO of The Cara Program, a non-profit organization that provides comprehensive training, job placement and support services to individuals who are homeless and struggling in poverty.  During Weinheimer’s tenure, The Cara Program founded and established leading social enterprises, including Cleanslate Chicago, to generate revenue and provide employment opportunities and on-the-job training to individuals who have significant obstacles to employment. 

Weinheimer earned a B.S. from Boston College and an M.B.A. from The University of Chicago Booth School of Business, where he was awarded the Distinguished Alumni Award for Public Service.  He serves on the advisory board for the Social Enterprise Initiative at The University of Chicago Booth School of Business.  He also serves on the board of directors for the Oak Park River Forest Community Foundation.
Ron Tarrson

Ron Tarrson, ’72

Ron Tarrson

Ron Tarrson, ’72

Managing Partner and Director, Aero Services Center

Ron Tarrson is the managing partner and director of Aero Services Center, a supplier of avionics and maintenance for private and corporate aviation at both the Santa Fe and Santa Teresa airports in New Mexico. Additionally, Tarrson is the majority partner and director of the Jet Center at Santa Fe, a recently opened full service Fixed Base Operator. He formerly worked for the John O. Butler Company, where he held numerous positions, including corporate director, treasurer, COO, and president. After selling to Sunstar of Japan, which took the public company private, he served for two years as vice chairman. Tarrson received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Illinois and his MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. He serves in leadership roles for many foundations that focus on the airline industry. Tarrson also serves on the Council on Chicago Booth, and the advisory board at the Polsky Center of Entrepreneurship and Innovation.
Erik Wallstein

Erik Wallsten, ’04

Erik Wallstein

Erik Wallsten, ’04

Cofounder and Managing Partner, Adobe Capital

Erik Wallsten is the cofounder and managing partner of Adobe Capital. He has extensive experience in the Mexican venture capital, private equity, and real estate sectors. Among other investments, Wallsten was involved in the development of the first sustainable housing project in Mexico City as part of LaSalle Investment Management and was a principal at the NAFTA Fund, a local private equity fund focused on cross-border investments involving high-growth small and medium-sized enterprises. He was also a member of the investment team in charge of the North American Environmental Fund, Mexico’s first environmentally focused venture capital fund. Wallsten received an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business and has a bachelor’s degree in industrial engineering from Universidad Iberoamericana.
Pete Wilkins

Peter Wilkins

Pete Wilkins

Peter Wilkins

Managing Director, Hyde Park Angels

Peter Wilkins has successfully founded, built, and turned around companies in the education, health care, and technology industries. He has also leveraged his entrepreneurial experience to help build one of the top early-stage venture groups (angel investors) in the country.

Currently, Wilkins leads Hyde Park Angels (HPA) as the managing director. Prior to HPA, he cofounded New Futuro, a socially innovative education company. Before New Futuro, Wilkins worked with KKR Capstone (KKR’s operations group) as President of PRIMEDIA Healthcare, where he turned around the company from record losses to record profits and built one of the premier online physician education communities. Prior to PRIMEDIA, Wilkins successfully served in senior sales and marketing roles for two technology startups that collectively sold for more than $2.8 billion. Wilkins holds a degree in business from Indiana University and graduated from the University of Chicago Booth Executive Institute.

Wilkins serves on a number of boards, is an active advisor to many entrepreneurs, and frequently speaks about entrepreneurship and venture capital. He also works with founders, CEOs and company boards to develop strategic solutions to address their growth and capital needs with the Omaxen Group.

Throughout his career, Wilkins has been passionate about developing startup leaders. He believes when entrepreneurs lead with purpose, optimize their performance, and take a people-first approach they improve their lives, their companies, and the world in incredible ways.