Our judges are entrepreneurs, investors and industry leaders who will travel from across North America to judge our Finalists‘ live pitches on stage at Shea’s Performing Arts Center on October 3rd.

During the daytime, more than two dozen Qualifying Judges will narrow down our group of Finalists to 10. Then, in the evening on October 3rd, our Finals Judges will be tasked with the challenge of deciding which eight companies will win a cut of $5 million, including our grand prize of $1 million.

Meet Our Finals Judges

Woody Benson

Considered a business partner and company builder by his CEOs, Benson has spent half of his 35-year tech career on the operational side (Apple Computer, Sony Corporation, Lotus Development, Shiva Corporation, and MCK Communications) and the other half on the investing side (Lazard Technology Partners, Prism VentureWorks, and now LaunchCapital). He was also named Mass Telecom CEO of the Year and a Top 50 VC by AlwaysOn Media.

Mahala Burn, PhD

Associate Director, Corporate Development & Strategic Financing Lead | bioMérieux

Burn holds global responsibility for new technology scouting and strategic financing activities at bioMérieux. She leverages her background as a doctoral-level cell biologist, a strategy consultant, and an operational leader to seek and enable cutting-edge technology to save the lives of critical care patients. Prior to her role at bioMérieux, Burn led operations as the life sciences practice director at EY-Parthenon, a top 10 firm that is the global strategy consulting arm of Ernst & Young.

Chris Heivly

Managing Director | The Startup Factory
Entrepreneur in Residence | Techstars

Heivly is one of the nation’s leading experts in how to turn startups into multimillion-dollar companies and has been dubbed the “Startup Whisperer.” Heivly has worked at the highest levels for some of the world’s most recognized brands, including MapQuest, which was sold to AOL for $1.2 billion; Rand McNally, the world’s largest map publisher; and Accenture, the largest multinational management consulting, technology services, and outsourcing company on the planet.

Arturo Nuñez

Founder | AIE Creative

Nuñez is the founder of AIE Creative, a company that provides immersive experiences to a highly curated selection of brands looking for unique ways to connect with diverse customers. He was previously CMO for Latin America for Apple. He was responsible for marketing communications, corporate communications, product marketing, education content, enterprise marketing, and developer relations across all 38 countries in Latin America and the Caribbean, with special focus on Brazil, Mexico, Colombia, and Chile.

Deborah Quazzo

Managing Partner | GSV AcceleraTE

Quazzo is the managing partner of GSV AcceleraTE, a venture capital fund investing in exceptional entrepreneurs and their companies in the $75B education and talent technology sector. She is also the co-founder and managing partner of the ASU GSV Summit and founder and senior advisor of GSV Advisors. Now in its 10th year, the ASU GSV Summit celebrates innovation across the global “pre-K to gray” learning and talent landscape and attracts over 4,000 attendees.

Rochelle Stewart

Founding Partner | 3C Partners

Stewart currently serves as an advisor for the Morgan Stanley Multicultural Innovation Lab and is the founding partner of 3C Partners, an advisory and consulting business that works with venture capital and startup clients on marketing, brand, and business growth strategy. She began her career at UBS and has held positions at Brightwood Capital, L’Oreal, POPSUGAR, and Condé Nast, where she helped drive company-wide transformation across the portfolio of more than 20 brands.

Aashish Tripathi

Head of Business | Amazon Launchpad

Tripathi joined Amazon in 2013, and is the co-founder and head of business for Amazon Launchpad. Prior to joining Amazon, Aashish was VP of sales and operations at the startup Bellycard, where he helped raise over $20M in funding and expanded the company from 40 to 150 employees. Before joining Bellycard, Tripathi spent six years at eBay, where he conceptualized, built, and managed the Top Seller Account Management program.

Meet Our Qualifying Judges:

  • Alan Alpert
  • Stuart Angert
  • Harvey Arbesman
  • Jeff Arywitz
  • Pete Augustine
  • Mark Barberio
  • Mark Branden
  • Joanna Brougher, ESQ.
  • Paul Buckley
  • Helen Cappuccino
  • Dr. Samuel David Cloud
  • Hugh Davies
  • Lauren DeLuca
  • Robert Evans
  • Robert Fritzinger
  • Stephan Gamard
  • Dr. Robert Genco
  • Tom Godin
  • Jim Hatem
  • Kevin Kerl
  • John Lopinski, ESQ.
  • Nathaniel Lucek
  • Keith Lukasik
  • Jack McGowan
  • Deborah O’Shea
  • Lynn Oswald
  • Jamel C. Perkins
  • David Pfalzgraf, ESQ.
  • Brian W. Pusch
  • Bill Rader
  • Sam Russo
  • Allison Sagraves
  • Dr. Sanwal Sarraf
  • Bob Skerker
  • Bradley Sparks
  • David Thiemecke
  • David Thompason
  • Elizabeth Thrasher
  • Nicole R. Tzetzo
  • Andrea Vossler