Board of Directors
Managing Director at Nexus Partners
Steve Adelman is the founder and Managing Director of Nexus Partners, a Silicon Valley-based consultancy that works with clients on innovation, customer discovery, market entry, strategic partnerships, and revenue growth. He is an expert on Lean Startup; he has been a mentor for Steve Blank’s Lean LaunchPad course at UC Berkeley and Stanford University, and has led Lean Startup sessions for Citrix’s Corporate Accelerator and the Wharton School of Business. Steve has worked with high technology and financial services companies and entrepreneurs for over twenty years. Steve holds a BS in computer science from Columbia University (with honors) and an MBA from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business.
Co-founder and Chairperson of IRA-International Robotics Academy
Lama Sha’sha’a cofounder and chairperson of IRA- International Robotics Academy. Lama previously worked in the Ministry of Labour appointed by Prime Ministry in October 2002 in the PMU- Program Management Unit to work with H.E. Minister of Labour on The National Strategy of Poverty and Unemployment. Lama holds her Master’s Degree in International Trade with the focus on Business Development from Jordan Institute of Diplomacy and also B.A. in Political Science from University of Jordan. Lama is a mother of four children and while watching her kids she learnt that children enjoy learning by doing and can be motivated and engaged in learning when they understand their competencies and strengths. She also observed that children develop themselves more when they learn in an environment that allows creativity, team building, analytical thinking and problem solving and this what IRA was founded for. IRA specialises in STEM and Robotics and built a program that targets students from 6-16 years old. IRA’s team believes in students’ potentials to innovate and invent solutions. The program offers support to schools with professionally trained engineers, along with STEM and Robotics Curriculum that was developed as applications on educational concepts. Several modules of hands-on activities were developed according to international standard curriculum of Math and Science, moreover they emphasis on interdisciplinary approach. Lama has been recently selected at the GES2016- Global Entrepreneurship Summit 2016 that has been hosted by President Obama at Stanford University in Silicon Valley where she got the opportunity to participate in Deloitte “The Innovation Salon”, The announcement of: 100 years of AI-Artificial Intelligence, Hackathon: Empowering Women through technology.
VP, Corporate Architecture Group, Oracle
Luke Kowalski is a VP in the corporate architecture group at Oracle. He helps with technology policy, industry standards, community, security, and government affairs. He also works on M&A integration planning with internal counsel and corporate development. He is in charge of a few corporate controls and approvals, including accessibility, interoperability, and external presence.
Before going to Oracle, he worked for various startups in technical, design, and business roles, as well as for Netscape’s Server and E commerce divisions. He holds several patents and professional certifications, serves as an ISO representative for US through ANSI and lectures frequently at conferences and universities. His educational background includes advanced degrees from UTA, Pratt Institute, and Columbia University.
Executive Director, Startup With Purpose
Henry recently graduated from the University of California, Berkeley, majoring in Middle Eastern Studies with minors in History and Industrial Engineering. Henry’s experience in Jordan and the Middle East stems from having graduated from high school at King’s Academy in 2014. In 2016 Henry founded the Startup With Purpose Foundation, a nonprofit that focuses on enhancing entrepreneurial opportunities for underserved and underutilized talent pools, primarily in the Middle East. The Foundation has thus far graduated over 200 participants in its first year of operation. In addition to his nonprofit work, Henry has assisted in analyzing investment opportunities for DASH Ventures, a Jordanian venture capital firm and he currently works as a pharmaceutical sales consultant for the MENA region. Henry has additional fundraising experience as the Treasurer of the UC Berkeley Sailing Team, tripling the team’s annual budget through an extensive fundraising campaign. Henry speaks English and Spanish fluently, and is proficient in Arabic, Italian and Latin.
Board of Advisors
Senior Vice President, US Market Access Center
Chris Burry serves as a Senior Vice President of US Market Access Center. Previously, Mr. Burry served as a Founding Member of Avanade. Prior to Avanade, he served as a Senior Executive of Andersen Consulting and a Senior Technology Consultant of EDS. He oversaw numerous large-scale projects for clients in the energy, financial services, healthcare and government sectors. He served as a Columnist of Operating Systems and Infrastructure at ComputerWorld Magazine and an Adviser of Research Division at IDC (publisher of a number of technology magazines) on cloud computing and the future of technology. He served as a Regular Speaker of Industry Conferences at Microsoft and IDC. He serves as a Director of US Market Access Center. Mr. Burry holds a Degree in Political Science (with honors) from Swarthmore College.
Richard Allen Horning
Senior Counsel, Reed Smith LLP
Richard Allan Horning practices law at Reed Smith in Palo Alto, California. He specializes in counseling high technology and e-commerce companies in all stages of development, from start-up to Fortune 50, with particular emphasis on funding transactions, intellectual property protection, licensing, contract and antitrust issues. He also has substantial experience in representing high technology companies in litigation and arbitration matters, in both international and domestic venues.
Mr. Horning is Past President of the International Technology Law Association [f/k/a Computer Law Association], and formerly served on the Executive Committee of the Intellectual Property Law Section of the State Bar of California. He serves on the Advisory Board’s of BNA Electronic Information & Policy Law Reporter, Center for Intellectual Property [Gothenburg, Sweden] and the International Institute of Innovation Journalism [Stanford]. He is a frequent speaker at industry and legal conferences, and has authored numerous articles on Internet law, arbitration and technology law. He has been selected by his peers for inclusion in the International Who’s Who of Internet and E-Commerce Lawyers, and as a Northern California “IP Super Lawyer”. He served as a member of the ICC Task Force on IT in Arbitration, ICC Working Party on International Small Claims Arbitration, Judge Pro Tem of the San Francisco Superior Court, Discovery Referee in high technology cases in the Santa Clara and Contra Costa Superior Courts, and has been involved in over 60 domestic and international high technology arbitrations.
Dr. John Austin
Headmaster, King’s Academy
Dr. John Austin was named headmaster of King’s Academy in 2010, succeeding Founding Headmaster Dr. Eric Widmer and bringing with him over 25 years of experience as a teacher and residential school administrator.
Dr. Austin graduated from Williams College in 1987, where he majored in English and played on the varsity soccer team, spending his junior year at Exeter College Oxford to study literature and political economy. He received a Master’s degree in English literature from Middlebury College in 1991 and a Master of Philosophy and PhD in English and comparative literature from Columbia University in 2000.
Dr. Austin’s career began at St. Andrew’s School, a leading US boarding school in Delaware, where he was a teacher, advisor, coach and dorm parent. He went on to serve as class advisor, department chair, dean of students and academic dean. His scholarly interests include 19th century American literature and the Anglo-American literary market, and he has written extensively on the literature of the American Renaissance. He has also written about a range of educational issues for Independent School magazine and presented at the National Association of Independent Schools and at the Association of Boarding Schools. Dr. Austin also teaches Honors English at King’s.
Global Growth Marketing Manager, Mobile Apps at Google
I have an undergraduate degree in IT and an MBA in Marketing, and I’ve worked with Google for the last 6 years in varying roles such as strategy, sales and product marketing. I currently lead marketing initiatives for Google Maps globally. Along with my core role, I’ve been deeply involved in Google’s non-profit initiatives in Ghana and India. In late 2014, I spent 6 weeks consulting with a tech entrepreneurship incubator in Accra, Ghana and giving digital literacy training to students at the Ghana Institute of Fashion Technology. I’m also an angel investor and advisor in a Fin-Tech startup in India focused on microsavings for the bottom of the pyramid. I was also an entrepreneur before I started at Google, and have successfully exited from my engineering business in India manufacturing circuit breakers for consumer appliances and currently own a restaurant in Pune.
For the last year, I’ve been involved in Avasant Foundation’s entrepreneurship and digital literacy projects in Africa and the Caribbean. I’ve contributed in a large way to the digital literacy curriculum that is being taught to over 1200 underprivileged youth in these regions.
Industry Fellow and Lecturer for the Sutardja Center for Entrepreneurship and Technology at UC Berkeley
Stephen Torres is an Industry Fellow and Lecturer for the Sutardja Center for Entrepreneurship & Technology at UC Berkeley. Stephen recently was CEO for clean tech startup MyDomino, which focused on consumer climate change solutions. He previously founded two clean tech companies that were both acquired. He started solar data and analytics company PV Solar Report in 2011, and in 2013 he founded solar customer acquisition platform Sunible. Stephen graduated from UC Berkeley and has an MBA from Cornell University.