15 high-tech entrepreneurs graduate from Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership

Members of the High-Tech CEL Class of 2014. (Photo by Nancy J. Parisi).

Members of the High-Tech CEL Class of 2014. (Photo by Nancy J. Parisi)

Release Date: July 15, 2014 This content is archived.


BUFFALO, N.Y. -- The University at Buffalo School of Management’s Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership (CEL), in partnership with UB’s New York State Center of Excellence in Bioinformatics and Life Sciences (CBLS), has equipped a new class of local leaders with the skills to successfully guide their businesses in the ever-changing high-tech field.

Fifteen representatives from nine life sciences and technology companies made up the fourth class of executives to complete the esteemed High-Tech CEL program.

A joint graduation ceremony for four CEL programs was held on June 5 at UB’s Center for the Arts.

The 2014 High-Tech CEL graduates are: Phyllis Burgio of Burgio Health Alliance LLC, East Amherst; Brendon Dever and William “Clark” Dever of Heads Up Display Inc., Buffalo; Pearl Griffin of Buffalo BioLabs LLC, Buffalo; Kashif Haque of Corduroy Diagnostics, Buffalo; Chandan Krishna, Ning Lin, Maxim Mokin and Ashish Sonig of UB Neurosurgery, Amherst; Dr. Paul J. Lee and Christopher Mastin of Retina Consultants of WNY, Williamsville; Pamela Marcucci and Michael Springer of Jacobs Institute, Buffalo; Brita Moe of Moefly LLC, Buffalo; and Richard Nalezynski of rehab|neXt, Buffalo.

The High-Tech CEL program is a collaborative effort between the UB School of Management and the CBLS. It offers leaders of early-stage and evolving life sciences and technology companies the opportunity to learn the unique challenges of the high-tech industry from established entrepreneurs and others who are important to long-term success, such as venture capitalists.

“As a pre-revenue startup, the information covered in the High-Tech CEL program provided a great survey of ‘unknown unknowns,’ preparing my team for the problems and challenges we will face as our company matures,” says 2014 graduate Clark Dever, co-founder of Heads Up Display Inc., which was recently accepted into Start-Up NY, a statewide program that allows new or expanding businesses to operate tax-free for 10 years.

The 10-week program combined weekly topical sessions with industry networking events and the opportunity for mentorship. Throughout the program, guest speakers from across the region and country shared their experience through interactive lectures, panel discussions and case studies on a wide range of topics, including entrepreneurship challenges, intellectual property, licensing and regulatory issues, sales and marketing, and financing. Because the program limits annual enrollment, this year’s graduating class benefited from the chance to interact more intimately with speakers from companies like Pfizer, Welch Allyn and Brooks, Houghton & Co.

“My favorite part of the program was the interaction with such inspiring individuals,” says Pearl Griffin, senior director of administration at Buffalo BioLabs LLC. “Operating a small business in the biotech space requires long hours and a high degree of personal commitment. It was great to hear from people who have been down the same path, understand the struggles and have found great success.”

Next year’s program is slated for spring 2015. To learn more or apply, contact the CEL at 716-885-5715 or mgt-cel@buffalo.edu.

Established in 1987, the CEL provides participants with individualized and interactive education in entrepreneurship. More than 1,200 CEL alumni employ more than 22,000 Western New Yorkers, and their businesses are worth more than $2 billion to the local economy. For more information, visit mgt.buffalo.edu/cel.

The mission of UB’s New York State Center of Excellence in Bioinformatics and Life Sciences is to foster economic development by connecting university resources with life sciences and high-tech industry through funding, research and development support, programming and education, with the goal of helping companies find business solutions, accelerate new ideas and grow. This technology-based economic development mission is complemented by the center’s efforts to support the advancement of new discoveries in science that seek better ways of preventing and managing disease and improving lives. Learn more at buffalo.edu/bioinformatics.

The UB School of Management is recognized for its emphasis on real-world learning, community and economic impact, and the global perspective of its faculty, students and alumni. The school also has been ranked by Bloomberg Businessweek, the Financial Times, Forbes and U.S. News & World Report for the quality of its programs and the return on investment it provides its graduates. For more information about the UB School of Management, visit mgt.buffalo.edu.

The University at Buffalo is a premier research-intensive public university, a flagship institution in the State University of New York system and its largest and most comprehensive campus. UB’s more than 28,000 students pursue their academic interests through more than 300 undergraduate, graduate and professional degree programs. Founded in 1846, the University at Buffalo is a member of the Association of American Universities.

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