Board of Advisors
General Manager – Global Strategy Group, Verizon Enterprise Solutions
Sam Bastia is the general manager of Verizon Enterprise Solutions’ global strategy group. In this role, he is responsible for global strategic planning, venture investing, business ideation and global competitive strategy.
Prior to joining Verizon in 2009, Bastia was a vice president and managing director of strategy and business development for Sun Microsystems where he developed merger and acquisition strategies, crafted go-to-market campaigns, and structured strategic business initiatives.
Bastia has extensive experience in the funding and growth of venture-backed start-ups, as well as large-scale global business negotiations. In 1998, he was a co-founder and corporate vice president of Breakaway Solutions, Inc., a provider of software-as-a-service solutions that went public within its first year of operation at a valuation of $4 billion. Over the course of his career, Bastia has personally raised more than $200 million in venture funding and held executive positions at three Fortune 100 corporations.
Bastia earned a bachelor’s degree in engineering from the University of Massachusetts, and studied business strategy at the London School of Economics and Political Science.
Senior Vice President, Director of Fidelity Center for Applied Technology (FCAT)
Sean Belka is senior vice president, director of Fidelity Center for Applied Technology (FCAT), a unit of Fidelity Investments, a leading provider of investment management, retirement planning, portfolio guidance, brokerage, benefits outsourcing and other financial products and services to more than 20 million individuals, institutions and financial intermediaries. FCAT’s vision is to serve as Fidelity’s idea and innovation catalyst, helping Fidelity’s employees and businesses to imagine and realize the possibilities of emerging technologies and new ideas.
Founder & Managing Partner, Berylson Capital Partners
James is the Managing Partner of Berylson Capital Partners, a multi-strategy investment firm based in Boston. Prior to founding Berylson Capital Partners, James worked at Serengeti Asset Management in New York City. Previously, he was an Associate in the Special Situations Group at Goldman Sachs where he focused on public equity, distressed debt and private investment opportunities across various sectors. James began his career at Goldman Sachs in the Leveraged Finance Division. In addition, he is a trustee of the Richard & Susan Smith Family Foundation, one of the leading private foundations in greater Boston. James is also on the Board of Millwall Football Club, an English football team currently competing in the Championship League. He graduated from Harvard College in 2004.
Massachusetts Secretary of Housing and Economic Development
Secretary Greg Bialecki oversees the Commonwealth’s business development, housing & community development, and consumer affairs & business regulations undersecretariats. As Governor Patrick’s chief housing and economic development advisor and cabinet member, Secretary Bialecki has oversight of fourteen state agencies.
Prior to his appointment as Secretary of Housing and Economic Development, Bialecki served as the Undersecretary of Business Development. He also leads the Governor’s Development Cabinet, which improves coordination across several Cabinet Secretariats involved in high level initiatives geared towards strengthening the Commonwealth’s economic position.
Before joining the Patrick-Murray Administration, Bialecki enjoyed a twenty year career as a real estate development and environmental lawyer at the law firms of Hill & Barlow and DLA Piper Rudnick, where his work focused on the major urban redevelopment projects in the Greater Boston area. He also worked extensively with public agencies, non-profit organizations and private landowners on land conservation and open space protection matters throughout the Commonwealth. He is a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School.
Founder and former CEO of Vertex Pharmaceuticals
Dr. Joshua Boger is the founder of Vertex Pharmaceuticals Incorporated (NASDAQ: VRTX). He retired as Vertex’s Chief Executive Officer and continues to serve on the Board. Dr. Boger holds a bachelor of arts in Chemistry and Philosophy from Wesleyan University (Connecticut) and a master's and doctorate degrees in Chemistry from Harvard University. He is the author of over 50 scientific publications, holds 31 issued U.S. patents in pharmaceutical discovery and development, and has lectured widely in the United States, in Europe and in Asia.
Dr. Boger is Chair of the Board of Trustees of Wesleyan University (Middletown, CT), Immediate-Past-Chairman of BIO, a founding Director and Chairman of the New England Healthcare Institute, a founding Director and Co-Chairman of the Progressive Business Leaders Network, Chair of the Board of Fellows of the Harvard Medical School and Chair of the Board of the Celebrity Series.
He serves on several additional non-profit Boards including the Harvard Board of Overseers, The Hastings Center, the American Civil Liberties Union of Massachusetts Foundation, the Science Advisory Council of WGBH, the Museum of Science, the Massachusetts Workforce Investment Board, the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center, the Dean’s Advisory Group of the Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, the Harvard College Overseers’ Committee to Visit the Business School and the MIT Corporation Visiting Committees to the Department of Biology and to the Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences Technology (HST)/Whitaker College.
Chairman A123 Systems, serial entrepreneur, avid mentor
Sycamore Networks (SCMR), Tejas Networks, Sandstone Capital and HiveFire.Prior to co-founding Sycamore Networks, Dr. Deshpande was founder and chairman of Cascade Communications Corp.
Dr. Deshpande serves as a member of the MIT Corporation, and his generous donations have made possible MIT's Deshpande Center for Technological Innovation. He and his wife are involved in several non-profit initiatives that include support for MIT, IIT, TiE, Akshaya Patra Foundation, Public Health Foundation of India and the Social Entrepreneurship Sandbox in India.
Dr. Deshpande holds a B.Tech. in Electrical Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology - Madras, an M.E. in Electrical Engineering from the University of New Brunswick in Canada, and Ph.D. in Data Communications from Queens University in Canada.
|Linda Pizzuti Henry|
Director, The John W. Henry Family Foundation
Linda Pizzuti Henry is an early-stage impact investor, a televison producer, community activist, and proud Bostonian.
As an active investor in various companies, projects, productions, and real estate, she is intrigued by for-profit businesses that can sustainably accomplish the goals of non-profits, and is trying to expand her support and investments in this area.
Linda worked in real estate development and investment for over 10 years, specializing in energy efficient buildings. She received a Bachelor of Science degree from Babson College and her Masters Degree from Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Chief Operating Officer & NASA Liaison, CASIS
Duane Ratliff is CASIS’ Chief Operating Officer (COO) & Liaison to NASA. He is responsible for managing the day-to-day operations of the organization by providing guidance and leadership to the executive management team. As the official liaison to NASA, Ratliff engages with the requisite research and implementation centers as well as headquarters officials to ensure the development of relationships and effective communication that enable the cooperative support of NASA’s capabilities and legacy expertise.
Senior Director of Microsoft's New England Research & Development (N.E.R.D.) Center
Sara Spalding is the Senior Director of Microsoft's New England Research & Development Center, where she leads a team responsible for Microsoft's R&D Campus and the company’s technical and local outreach. Sara joined Microsoft in 1991, and has worked on wide range of products and technologies, including Windows, Internet Explorer, the .NET Framework and MSDN, in a range of roles including Technical Evangelist, Program Manager and Product Unit Manager. After a short vacation from the company in 2005-2007, she rejoined Microsoft in 2007 here in Cambridge. Sara has a BS in Computer Science and Math from the University of Puget Sound. She lives near Boston with her husband and two children.