Vice President, Operations
Janelle joined the OCTANe team in September of 2008 and focuses on signature event management for OCTANe’s Technology & Investor Forum (TIF) and Medical Device & Investor Forum (MDIF), annual membership, organizational finances, and other operational activities for the team. She also runs the OCTANe TalentEngine and assists in writing grants for OCTANe Foundation for Innovation, the company’s charitable arm. Janelle received her Bachelor of Business Administration from Loyola Marymount University (LMU), Los Angeles with a double emphasis in Business Law and Marketing.
Director, Partner Relations
Teresa joined the OCTANe team in June 2016. Teresa is responsible for managing the relationships of OCTANe partners and sponsors that span early stage, growth and public companies in addition to investors, executives and entrepreneurs. She is also focused on new business development and broadening the OCTANe network. Prior to joining OCTANe, Teresa was a Partner & Vice President at Profit Recovery Partners. As one of the founders, she experienced every facet of running and growing a successful professional services consulting firm. She has a broad-based business background encompassing all aspects from sales, strategy development, operations, employee development, process improvement, and execution. Early in her career Teresa held a variety of different positions at Emulex Corporation, including being on the team that released the first Fibre Channel Host Adapter. Teresa is passionate about helping organizations succeed along with developing the internal staff to meet their goals and objectives. Teresa received her Bachelor of Business Administration from Texas Tech University.
Manager, Media Relations
Cara joined the OCTANe team in July 2016 and is the Manager of Media Relations. Prior to joining OCTANe, Cara was the eCommerce Manager at one of Orange County’s largest high-end retail consignment stores. Since her graduation, she has freelanced for many exciting companies in the Southern California area. Cara received her Bachelor of Arts in Communications from a small liberal arts college in Radnor, PA.
Administrator of Innovation
Jamie joined the OCTANe team in October of 2016. Owing to her experiences working at LenSx, Alcon and ALPHAEON, she is well versed in startup companies, medical device and ophthalmology. Jamie’s background in high level executive support and office management allow her to streamline practices and champion special projects while maintaining office efficiency and the company culture.
Senior Advisor, OCTANe
Paul Symczak is a Senior Advisor to OCTANe. He is a seasoned senior management executive with diverse experience in the telecom, wireless, online, high tech and broadcast media industries. He was the co-founder and operator of Prism Strategic Consulting LLC and has been actively involved with the CONNECT Springboard entrepreneurial mentoring program in San Diego, CA. Previously, Paul held senior business development, strategic alliances and operational positions with Verizon, GTE and Qualcomm, working in subsidiaries focused on leading edge and innovative products and services. He has also worked with non-profit organizations, including serving as Senior Vice-President, General Counsel and Board Secretary for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting in Washington DC. Paul has a J.D. degree from the George Washington University Law School and a BA in Economics from the University of Pittsburgh.
LaunchPad Data Analytics
Ken assists in the screening and preparation of candidates for OCTANe’s LaunchPad process, manages its data analytics, and generates the reports that are provided to entrepreneurs who complete the process. These reports show how they performed on multiple criteria versus all the other companies that have been through LaunchPad, thus enabling them to make their investor presentations as compelling as possible. Prior to OCTANe, Ken had a career in corporate strategy and finance, primarily with Verizon Communications and its predecessor, GTE Corporation. Ken earned an MBA from New York University’s Stern School of Business, and completed his undergraduate studies at Michigan State University.
After 12 years of retirement, Andrew Props joined OCTANe in August 2015. His role in business development with OCTANe is to increase membership, partnership and MDIF and TIF conference participation. Prior to retirement in 2003 Andrew’s professional career was in the copier industry, with many years at Xerox Corporation, his own company, Kontek Business Systems, and Ikon Office Solutions. Andrew graduated from the University of South Dakota with a BA in Business Administration and participated in the MBA program at the Graziadio School of Business at Pepperdine University. Andrew enjoyed retirement but feels OCTANe’s Mission is a worthy cause and much less strenuous than keeping up with 5 granddaughters.
Associate, Visionary Venture Fund
Garrett Hamontree joined the Visionary Venture Fund in May 2017 as an associate. Prior to joining Visionary, he worked in the oil and gas industry as a field engineer for Schlumberger, as project manager for Chevron, and as CEO for Bridgemark, a private exploration and production company. At Chevron he managed strategic major capital projects as well as increasing production for the company through various asset development projects. Later Garrett left Chevron to take Bridgemark through a debt financed phase of growth to acquire oil fields across the country and to begin a successful exploration campaign. Garrett graduated from Vanderbilt University with a B.E. in Civil and Environmental Engineering and is currently finishing his MBA at the University of Southern California’s Marshall School of Business.