Committee Chairs

Alan SchlaiferChairman, Wharton DC Innovation Summit President, Wharton School Club of DC

Alan is the Summit Chair and President of the Wharton Club of Washington, DC. His dedication to the School and the Club resulted in his becoming a recipient of the Club’s Joseph Wharton Award and Wharton’s Distinguished Alumni Service Award. During his tenure, the Club has had 15 successful conferences, including the five Innovation Summits that have stimulated, connected and empowered a diverse group of innovators and entrepreneurs within and well beyond the Wharton alumni network.

An accomplished business attorney with the highest rating, “a v,” from Martindale-Hubbell, Alan’s career has been split between private practice (now in business and general practice) and public service. He received a Distinguished Service Award for his decade of service as a Senior Trial Attorney at the Federal Trade Commission after two years at the Justice Department. Alan earned a J.D. from Harvard Law School following his undergraduate work at the Wharton School.

Alan SchlaiferChairman, Wharton DC Innovation Summit President, Wharton School Club of DC

Alan is the Summit Chair and President of the Wharton Club of Washington, DC. His dedication to the School and the Club resulted in his becoming a recipient of the Club’s Joseph Wharton Award and Wharton’s Distinguished Alumni Service Award. During his tenure, the Club has had 15 successful conferences, including the five Innovation Summits that have stimulated, connected and empowered a diverse group of innovators and entrepreneurs within and well beyond the Wharton alumni network.

An accomplished business attorney with the highest rating, “a v,” from Martindale-Hubbell, Alan’s career has been split between private practice (now in business and general practice) and public service. He received a Distinguished Service Award for his decade of service as a Senior Trial Attorney at the Federal Trade Commission after two years at the Justice Department. Alan earned a J.D. from Harvard Law School following his undergraduate work at the Wharton School.

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Ruwan SalgadoProgram Chair, Wharton DC Innovation Summit Principal, Strat8gy International, LLC

Ruwan Salgado is Principal of Strat8gy International, LLC, an international management consultancy, and was a Partner at Sino America Investment Partners, a venture seeking to assist Chinese companies with investing in the United States. He has expertise in business development, project management, operations, financial management and analysis, and strategic planning. As a management consultant in and outside of the U.S., Ruwan has worked with senior government officials and corporate executives in a wide range of industries including oil, mining, healthcare, finance/capital markets, education and agribusiness. He has served in general management, strategic planning, business development, operations and finance roles with both for-profit and non-profit organizations. Early in his career, he gained experience in venture capital at Calvert Ventures, which established the first socially responsible venture capital fund, helping to manage its portfolio companies and identify and assess new investment opportunities. More recently, Ruwan served as the Executive Director of World Links, an internationally award winning (e.g., from the World Economic Forum etc.) and innovative spin-off from The World Bank that focused on leveraging information and communications technology to improve global education. While at World Links, he spoke on educational technology at international conferences in Africa, Asia and the U.S.A. Ruwan served for over a decade as the President of the University of Chicago Booth School’s alumni club in the Washington, D.C. area and was co-founder and co-Chair of its Entrepreneurs’ Advisory Group, which provided monthly pro bono advise to Washington, DC area entrepreneurs. He serves on the White Flint Implementation Advisory Committee tasked to advise Montgomery County, Maryland’s Planning Board on the implementation of the County’s multi-billion dollar White Flint Sector Plan. Ruwan has an M.B.A. in Finance and Marketing from the University of Chicago and an M.Phil. in Economics from Oxford University. He received both a B.A. in Economics and a B.S. in Engineering from Swarthmore College.

Ruwan SalgadoProgram Chair, Wharton DC Innovation Summit Principal, Strat8gy International, LLC

Ruwan Salgado is Principal of Strat8gy International, LLC, an international management consultancy, and was a Partner at Sino America Investment Partners, a venture seeking to assist Chinese companies with investing in the United States. He has expertise in business development, project management, operations, financial management and analysis, and strategic planning. As a management consultant in and outside of the U.S., Ruwan has worked with senior government officials and corporate executives in a wide range of industries including oil, mining, healthcare, finance/capital markets, education and agribusiness. He has served in general management, strategic planning, business development, operations and finance roles with both for-profit and non-profit organizations. Early in his career, he gained experience in venture capital at Calvert Ventures, which established the first socially responsible venture capital fund, helping to manage its portfolio companies and identify and assess new investment opportunities. More recently, Ruwan served as the Executive Director of World Links, an internationally award winning (e.g., from the World Economic Forum etc.) and innovative spin-off from The World Bank that focused on leveraging information and communications technology to improve global education. While at World Links, he spoke on educational technology at international conferences in Africa, Asia and the U.S.A. Ruwan served for over a decade as the President of the University of Chicago Booth School’s alumni club in the Washington, D.C. area and was co-founder and co-Chair of its Entrepreneurs’ Advisory Group, which provided monthly pro bono advise to Washington, DC area entrepreneurs. He serves on the White Flint Implementation Advisory Committee tasked to advise Montgomery County, Maryland’s Planning Board on the implementation of the County’s multi-billion dollar White Flint Sector Plan. Ruwan has an M.B.A. in Finance and Marketing from the University of Chicago and an M.Phil. in Economics from Oxford University. He received both a B.A. in Economics and a B.S. in Engineering from Swarthmore College.

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Committee Team

Christine Copple, PhDFounder & CEO, Starise Ventures, Inc.

Christine brings over three decades of experience as a corporate officer and board member in varied biotechnology enterprises ranging from oncology, virology and neural stem cells to pharmaceutical manufacturing equipment and BioMed IT. She has a Ph.D. in molecular biology with over ten years of bench research experience. Her responsibilities have included fund raising, business development, operations, build out, cGMP manufacturing build/design, regulatory affairs, human resources, international marketing and sales, corporate communication, PR, investor relations, legislative liaison and R&D. She is a founder of 2 publicly traded companies - Microfluidics and Neuralstem and ran the seed venture fund of the American Society of Microbiology. Chris currently is the Chief Strategy Officer at SciTech Development an oncology company and Chief Operating Officer at ETX Pharma a gastroenterology company. She also serves on several private corporate and advisory boards including miRecule, Inc., a genomic based drug development platform company, the Maryland Industrial Partnerships Board and the Washington D.C. ArchAngels Board where she Chairs their Bio-Life Science Caucus.

Christine Copple, PhDFounder & CEO, Starise Ventures, Inc.

Christine brings over three decades of experience as a corporate officer and board member in varied biotechnology enterprises ranging from oncology, virology and neural stem cells to pharmaceutical manufacturing equipment and BioMed IT. She has a Ph.D. in molecular biology with over ten years of bench research experience. Her responsibilities have included fund raising, business development, operations, build out, cGMP manufacturing build/design, regulatory affairs, human resources, international marketing and sales, corporate communication, PR, investor relations, legislative liaison and R&D. She is a founder of 2 publicly traded companies - Microfluidics and Neuralstem and ran the seed venture fund of the American Society of Microbiology. Chris currently is the Chief Strategy Officer at SciTech Development an oncology company and Chief Operating Officer at ETX Pharma a gastroenterology company. She also serves on several private corporate and advisory boards including miRecule, Inc., a genomic based drug development platform company, the Maryland Industrial Partnerships Board and the Washington D.C. ArchAngels Board where she Chairs their Bio-Life Science Caucus.

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Frank GanisSenior Advisor and Board Member, DC Archangels

For most of his career, Frank Ganis has been immersed in innovation. He has always been enthusiastic about developing, launching and improving game-changing or even life-changing products and services which leverage digital technology.

Frank became immersed in the principles of strategic planning and technology development while working as a software engineer at the great idea factory, AT&T Bell Labs. During his decade there, he worked on a series of distributed database applications which are precursors to today’s cloud offerings, and a futuristic interactive television platform with programming and features that are forerunners to the metaverse. Thanks to AT&T’s sponsorship of Spaceship Earth in EPCOT, he was also trained in the detailed discipline of Disney Imagineering.

Currently, Frank is Senior Advisor and Board Member of the DC Archangels where he participates in review teams to evaluate early-stage companies for investment readiness and growth potential. Industry segments include smart cities, urban agriculture, artificial intelligence, drone applications, digital healthcare, online education, eldercare and immersive entertainment.

Frank is also a member of the Enhanced Digital Solutions consulting consortium. His success at working with clients to improve their businesses is grounded in experience in EdTech (Blackboard, Sylvan Learning), financial services (Capital One, USF&G) and telecom (AT&T, MCI). Career highlights include:

• Launching Gradarius, a Calculus Learning Platform that leverages AI so students can solve problems online in a step-by-step manner and receive real-time feedback and guidance.
• Growing the Gilfus Education Group by crafting leading-edge education solutions for school districts, colleges, universities, corporate training companies, academic publishers and toy manufacturers to promote institutional efficiencies and improve student success.
• Negotiating and managing strategic partnerships at Blackboard, Inc. to create new eLearning applications. Partners ranged from technology leaders (Microsoft, Oracle, Dell, Google, Intel) to major academic publishers (Pearson, McGraw-Hill, Houghton Mifflin) to early-stage online education companies.
• Improving and expanding Sylvan Online, the first large-scale online tutoring programs to deliver live multimedia instruction between teachers and students.
• Pioneering a series of Web-based products at Capital One for teens and young adults, along with free Internet access and the company’s first Web site for auto loans,
• Leading the Multimedia Commerce Group at USF&G Insurance and introducing online insurance sales through a collection of targeted Web sites for consumers, small businesses, large corporations and independent sales agents.
• Collaborating at MCI/News Corp. Internet Ventures, on the development of YourMoney.com, a pioneering Web-based personal finance community. Also participating in the design of the first Web sites for retailers such as Macy’s, Brooks Brothers and Neiman Marcus’ Horchow Catalog.

A life-long learner, Frank earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science from Penn State, an MSE in Computer and Information Science from the University of Pennsylvania, and an MBA from The Wharton School.

Frank GanisSenior Advisor and Board Member, DC Archangels

For most of his career, Frank Ganis has been immersed in innovation. He has always been enthusiastic about developing, launching and improving game-changing or even life-changing products and services which leverage digital technology.

Frank became immersed in the principles of strategic planning and technology development while working as a software engineer at the great idea factory, AT&T Bell Labs. During his decade there, he worked on a series of distributed database applications which are precursors to today’s cloud offerings, and a futuristic interactive television platform with programming and features that are forerunners to the metaverse. Thanks to AT&T’s sponsorship of Spaceship Earth in EPCOT, he was also trained in the detailed discipline of Disney Imagineering.

Currently, Frank is Senior Advisor and Board Member of the DC Archangels where he participates in review teams to evaluate early-stage companies for investment readiness and growth potential. Industry segments include smart cities, urban agriculture, artificial intelligence, drone applications, digital healthcare, online education, eldercare and immersive entertainment.

Frank is also a member of the Enhanced Digital Solutions consulting consortium. His success at working with clients to improve their businesses is grounded in experience in EdTech (Blackboard, Sylvan Learning), financial services (Capital One, USF&G) and telecom (AT&T, MCI). Career highlights include:

• Launching Gradarius, a Calculus Learning Platform that leverages AI so students can solve problems online in a step-by-step manner and receive real-time feedback and guidance.
• Growing the Gilfus Education Group by crafting leading-edge education solutions for school districts, colleges, universities, corporate training companies, academic publishers and toy manufacturers to promote institutional efficiencies and improve student success.
• Negotiating and managing strategic partnerships at Blackboard, Inc. to create new eLearning applications. Partners ranged from technology leaders (Microsoft, Oracle, Dell, Google, Intel) to major academic publishers (Pearson, McGraw-Hill, Houghton Mifflin) to early-stage online education companies.
• Improving and expanding Sylvan Online, the first large-scale online tutoring programs to deliver live multimedia instruction between teachers and students.
• Pioneering a series of Web-based products at Capital One for teens and young adults, along with free Internet access and the company’s first Web site for auto loans,
• Leading the Multimedia Commerce Group at USF&G Insurance and introducing online insurance sales through a collection of targeted Web sites for consumers, small businesses, large corporations and independent sales agents.
• Collaborating at MCI/News Corp. Internet Ventures, on the development of YourMoney.com, a pioneering Web-based personal finance community. Also participating in the design of the first Web sites for retailers such as Macy’s, Brooks Brothers and Neiman Marcus’ Horchow Catalog.

A life-long learner, Frank earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science from Penn State, an MSE in Computer and Information Science from the University of Pennsylvania, and an MBA from The Wharton School.

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Dan LoaguePresident, Washington DC ArchAngels

Dan Loague has an extensive background in venture capital and early stage investments. Over the past twenty-five years he has built, and now works with a national network of exceptionally active angels, professional investors, corporate, business development professionals, technology enterprise executives and government officials. He is currently President, Washington DC ArchAngels, and formerly the DC representative of Ventana Capital, Irvine CA, and Executive Director, National Association of Seed and Venture Funds.

In addition, he is Executive Director, Capital Formation Institute, Inc., a non-profit serving a national network of leading startup investors, licensees and commercialization professionals. In past positions, Mr. Loague has worked extensively as a state-level economic development professional, serving six consecutive governors of the state of Oklahoma. He is also a former university professor and instructor, and during 1963-67, served in the U.S. Air Force Systems Command as an Avionics Officer in RF-4C aircraft test program.

Dan LoaguePresident, Washington DC ArchAngels

Dan Loague has an extensive background in venture capital and early stage investments. Over the past twenty-five years he has built, and now works with a national network of exceptionally active angels, professional investors, corporate, business development professionals, technology enterprise executives and government officials. He is currently President, Washington DC ArchAngels, and formerly the DC representative of Ventana Capital, Irvine CA, and Executive Director, National Association of Seed and Venture Funds.

In addition, he is Executive Director, Capital Formation Institute, Inc., a non-profit serving a national network of leading startup investors, licensees and commercialization professionals. In past positions, Mr. Loague has worked extensively as a state-level economic development professional, serving six consecutive governors of the state of Oklahoma. He is also a former university professor and instructor, and during 1963-67, served in the U.S. Air Force Systems Command as an Avionics Officer in RF-4C aircraft test program.

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Randall ReadeExecutive Vice President, Washington DC ArchAngels

Randall Reade is the co-founder of the Washington DC ArchAngels, an angel investment group that finds, vets, and presents early stage companies to hundreds of investors. Founded in 2011, The ArchAngels has presented over 800 companies from clean tech, biotech, medical devices, AI and blockchain, energy, apps, games, and even cookies. Mr. Reade has developed an extensive network of investors around the US, and taken companies to China and Poland for investment and access to markets in Asia and the EU.

Recently, Mr. Reade has become a popular speaker for webinars and podcasts on what investors are looking for when they hear a company pitch. He has also develop a Training Program for investors and entrepreneurs on how become an investor and an entrepreneur at dcarchangels.org.

Randall ReadeExecutive Vice President, Washington DC ArchAngels

Randall Reade is the co-founder of the Washington DC ArchAngels, an angel investment group that finds, vets, and presents early stage companies to hundreds of investors. Founded in 2011, The ArchAngels has presented over 800 companies from clean tech, biotech, medical devices, AI and blockchain, energy, apps, games, and even cookies. Mr. Reade has developed an extensive network of investors around the US, and taken companies to China and Poland for investment and access to markets in Asia and the EU.

Recently, Mr. Reade has become a popular speaker for webinars and podcasts on what investors are looking for when they hear a company pitch. He has also develop a Training Program for investors and entrepreneurs on how become an investor and an entrepreneur at dcarchangels.org.

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Chuck Schilke, AM, JD, CRE, FRICSCEO, Intergreen Consulting

Chuck Schilke is a real estate, corporate, environmental. and energy lawyer based in Washington DC. He is also a real estate developer, financier, strategist, and educator.

He has practiced law in firms mostly in the Washington DC area, but also on Wall Street and in Boston. He has also practiced in-house at Exxon Mobil, Marriott, and the American National Red Cross.’

In his real estate law practice, he seeks to reconcile the imperatives of sustainability, economic development, and the housing needs of citizens. Similarly, in his energy practice, particularly at Exxon Mobil, he has attempted to harmonize environmental concerns with society’s need for abundant energy.

In real estate development, Chuck has developed projects valued at up to $1 billion, such as rebuilding the Red Cross’s entire blood processing system nationwide.

In real estate finance, Chuck performed all of the real estate legal due diligence for the Exxon-Mobil merger, and collaborated on teams at the Cadwalader law firm on Wall Street to issue multi-hundred million dollar tranches of Commercial Mortgage-Backed Securities every few days at the peak of the CMBS boom.

His major environmental projects include managing 100 Superfund sites while at Exxon Mobil, and remediating 20 of them.

As an educator, he has founded, led, and/or taught in real estate graduate and executive education programs at Georgetown University, Johns Hopkins University, and George Washington University. He created the Georgetown program and grew it into the 2nd largest graduate real estate program in the US.

Prior to his legal and business career, Chuck was a doctoral student in International Relations at Harvard, where he focused on American Foreign Policy Institutions, East Asia, and Russia. At Cornell Law School, he majored in Business and Regulation Law and specialized in International Legal Studies. Chuck’s father is a Wharton alumnus.

Chuck Schilke, AM, JD, CRE, FRICSCEO, Intergreen Consulting

Chuck Schilke is a real estate, corporate, environmental. and energy lawyer based in Washington DC. He is also a real estate developer, financier, strategist, and educator.

He has practiced law in firms mostly in the Washington DC area, but also on Wall Street and in Boston. He has also practiced in-house at Exxon Mobil, Marriott, and the American National Red Cross.’

In his real estate law practice, he seeks to reconcile the imperatives of sustainability, economic development, and the housing needs of citizens. Similarly, in his energy practice, particularly at Exxon Mobil, he has attempted to harmonize environmental concerns with society’s need for abundant energy.

In real estate development, Chuck has developed projects valued at up to $1 billion, such as rebuilding the Red Cross’s entire blood processing system nationwide.

In real estate finance, Chuck performed all of the real estate legal due diligence for the Exxon-Mobil merger, and collaborated on teams at the Cadwalader law firm on Wall Street to issue multi-hundred million dollar tranches of Commercial Mortgage-Backed Securities every few days at the peak of the CMBS boom.

His major environmental projects include managing 100 Superfund sites while at Exxon Mobil, and remediating 20 of them.

As an educator, he has founded, led, and/or taught in real estate graduate and executive education programs at Georgetown University, Johns Hopkins University, and George Washington University. He created the Georgetown program and grew it into the 2nd largest graduate real estate program in the US.

Prior to his legal and business career, Chuck was a doctoral student in International Relations at Harvard, where he focused on American Foreign Policy Institutions, East Asia, and Russia. At Cornell Law School, he majored in Business and Regulation Law and specialized in International Legal Studies. Chuck’s father is a Wharton alumnus.

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Greg SchlimmTechnology Executive, Transaction Advisors Institute

Greg Schlimm is a technology executive currently leading research initiatives at the Transaction Advisors Institute, the leading Institute for corporate M&A professionals. In this role, he collaborates with the Institute’s members to build knowledge about how corporate acquirers can improve their deal performance and maximize deal value to their shareholders. He also provides board-level advisory services to multiple technology firms, focusing on increasing growth rates and preparing for funding and/or exit.
He has proven sell-side and buy-side experience with B2B technology businesses in the US and the UK. His experience includes growing stand-alone businesses and scaling businesses within large global companies.
Highlights include:
• As CEO, grew technology analytics firm 25x after being hired by the founders of this UK-based firm to scale the business. Established a complex multi-supplier ecosystem to expand client value. Expanded the client base in the US and Europe, leveraged suppliers in Eastern Europe, and engaged with partners in all world regions. Ran the exit process, ultimately leading to the firm being acquired by the industry’s gold standard market intelligence firm.
• Established a new global technology-based analytics product line and grew business by 150 percent. Led multi-country team with US, UK, and Eastern European staff. Collaborated with other product and delivery teams to launch and support the offering in all major world regions. Also ran special projects for the corporate M&A Integration Management Office (IMO).
• Merged nine acquired firms into one global Information Management business unit at a global technology software firm, dealing with and learning about the value of post-merger integration when executing deals.
• In addition, held various roles at large and small firms, including senior P&L leadership, change management, strategic supplier management, and growth/scalability advisory.

He recently completed his research doctorate at the Warwick Business School (London, England), where he studied technology acquisitions by large serial acquirers, with an eye toward practices that can expand deal value during post-merger integration. In 2023, he was awarded the WBS Best Doctoral Thesis award for his research.

He previously received his MBA from the TRIUM program, which is co-taught by the London School of Economics and Political Science, HEC Paris, and NYU Stern, and is focused on building skills to manage across countries. He also has a BS Economics degree from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.

He lives on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC, with his wife Lynne and their two dogs.

Greg SchlimmTechnology Executive, Transaction Advisors Institute

Greg Schlimm is a technology executive currently leading research initiatives at the Transaction Advisors Institute, the leading Institute for corporate M&A professionals. In this role, he collaborates with the Institute’s members to build knowledge about how corporate acquirers can improve their deal performance and maximize deal value to their shareholders. He also provides board-level advisory services to multiple technology firms, focusing on increasing growth rates and preparing for funding and/or exit.
He has proven sell-side and buy-side experience with B2B technology businesses in the US and the UK. His experience includes growing stand-alone businesses and scaling businesses within large global companies.
Highlights include:
• As CEO, grew technology analytics firm 25x after being hired by the founders of this UK-based firm to scale the business. Established a complex multi-supplier ecosystem to expand client value. Expanded the client base in the US and Europe, leveraged suppliers in Eastern Europe, and engaged with partners in all world regions. Ran the exit process, ultimately leading to the firm being acquired by the industry’s gold standard market intelligence firm.
• Established a new global technology-based analytics product line and grew business by 150 percent. Led multi-country team with US, UK, and Eastern European staff. Collaborated with other product and delivery teams to launch and support the offering in all major world regions. Also ran special projects for the corporate M&A Integration Management Office (IMO).
• Merged nine acquired firms into one global Information Management business unit at a global technology software firm, dealing with and learning about the value of post-merger integration when executing deals.
• In addition, held various roles at large and small firms, including senior P&L leadership, change management, strategic supplier management, and growth/scalability advisory.

He recently completed his research doctorate at the Warwick Business School (London, England), where he studied technology acquisitions by large serial acquirers, with an eye toward practices that can expand deal value during post-merger integration. In 2023, he was awarded the WBS Best Doctoral Thesis award for his research.

He previously received his MBA from the TRIUM program, which is co-taught by the London School of Economics and Political Science, HEC Paris, and NYU Stern, and is focused on building skills to manage across countries. He also has a BS Economics degree from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.

He lives on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC, with his wife Lynne and their two dogs.

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