Ilana Diamond, Managing Director, Alphalab Gear:
Ilana Diamond is the Managing Director of AlphaLab Gear, a nationally-ranked hardware technology start-up accelerator based in Pittsburgh, PA. She helps entrepreneurs make rapid progress through the early stages of product and customer development by leveraging her experience and network, gained from over twenty years of leading and growing companies, from early stage to exit.
Prior to joining AlphaLab Gear, Ilana was CEO of Sima Products, an international consumer electronics accessory company that develops, manufactures and distributes products under the Sima, First Alert, Cherokeeand MGM Studio brands. Ilana built Sima’s management team, developed and managed a network of Asian manufacturers and led profitable sales growth at national brick and mortar retail chains such as Target and Walmart, internet retailers such as Amazon.com, and specialty catalog retailers. Based on innovative technology developed by Sima, she also founded and managed a commercial alerting startup, raised outside capital and spun the company off into a separate entity. In 2010, Ilana negotiated the sale of Sima and transitioned operations to the new owners. Earlier in her career, as a management consultant for PwC, Ilana provided marketing strategy advice, turnaround assistance and merger and acquisition support to executive management of Fortune 500, middle-market and growing companies.
Ilana holds a BA in Biological Sciences and Economics from Northwestern University, and an MBA from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management.
Bruce Failing, Founding Partner, Alerion Partners:
Bruce is based in South Florida, and he has been an entrepreneur, private equity and venture investor and turnaround specialist with successes in the areas of technology, media and consumer packaged goods. Over his 35-year career, Bruce has acted as CEO, founder, investor and board member of numerous growth companies, resulting in an IRR of 60%. Prior to co-founding Alerion in 2004, Bruce led investments in Productivity Solutions, Actmedia, Lamaze Publishing, Newborn Channel, Tone Brothers Spice Company and ERS International.
Bruce sits on the Board of Directors of EnviroScent, True Citrus, InStadium, HydroMassage and DeliverCareRx.
Bruce received an MBA from Harvard Business School and a BA from Tufts University.
Deena Ghazarian, Partner, TargetPath:
Deena Ghazarian is currently a Partner at TargetPath, a business accelerator that has mastered the complex dynamics of bringing great ideas to market. She is the former Senior Vice President of Global Sales and Finance for Monster Cable Products, Inc. She was a critical leader of the team responsible for planning and implementing Monster’s sales strategies and channel marketing programs. She was an integral member of the team involved with the launch of Beats by Dr. Dre headphones, which was acquired by Apple in 2014
Deena is a dynamic entrepreneurial global sales executive with a 20-year record of achievement and demonstrated success driving multi-million dollar sales growth while providing award-winning sales leadership. She is an expert in global consumer electronics sales and she has a vast knowledge of the channel marketplace.
Before joining the consumer electronics industry in 2000, Deena worked in the world of fashion for 10 years. Deena has worked for ReplayTV, AVAD, and Monster, and from the day entered the world of consumer electronics, she paved new paths for many people in the industry. Deena is one of the biggest supporters of Women in CE, and a Founding Board Member. She is a strong advocate for creating conditions for women’s prosperity within CE, both domestically and internationally. Named to the list of 2016 Powerful Women in Consumer Technology by Dealerscope Magazine, Deena is a proud graduate of Claremont McKenna College with a triple degree in politics, philosophy, and economics.
Raymond "Rip" Gellein Jr., Chairman, RBG Capital:
Raymond L. “Rip” Gellein Jr., is based in Central Florida, and is the former Chairman of the Board of Directors and Chief Executive Officer for Strategic Hotels & Resorts, Inc. (NYSE: BEE). Previously, he was president of the Global Development Group for Starwood Hotels and Resorts Worldwide and before that, he was the director, chairman and chief executive officer of Starwood Vacation Ownership, Inc. Gellein also served as chairman and co-chief executive officer of Vistana, Inc.
Gellein serves on the Board of Directors of Marriott Vacations Worldwide, the American Resort Development Association (ARDA) and the Mind and Life Institute. He previously was the chairman of ARDA and served on the Board of Directors of the Florida Chapter of Junior Achievement and the Roy E. Crummer Graduate School of Business at Rollins College.
Gellein received a bachelor of arts in psychology from Denison University, as well as a master’s of business administration in finance, accounting and marketing from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management.
Fred Hassan, Partner and Managing Director, Warburg Pincus:
Mr. Hassan is based in South Florida, and he is currently a Partner and Managing Director at Warburg Pincus LLC, a global private equity firm.
Mr. Hassan has been Partner and Managing Director at Warburg Pincus LLC, a global private equity investment institution, since 2011 and, prior to that, served as Senior Advisor from 2009 to 2010. Previously, Mr. Hassan served as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Schering-Plough from 2003 to 2009. Before assuming these roles, from 2001 to 2003 Mr. Hassan was Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Pharmacia Corporation, a company formed as a result of the merger of Monsanto Company and Pharmacia & Upjohn, Inc. He joined Pharmacia & Upjohn, Inc. as Chief Executive Officer in 1997. Mr. Hassan previously held leadership positions with Wyeth serving as Executive Vice President, and was a member of the Board from 1995 to 1997. Earlier in his career, he spent a significant tenure with Sandoz Pharmaceuticals and headed the company's U.S. pharmaceuticals business.
Mr. Hassan has also been a director of Time Warner Inc. since October 2009 and director of Amgen, Inc. since July 2015. In the course of his career, he has held numerous directorships, including those at Avon Products, Inc. from 1999 to 2013, Bausch & Lomb from 2010 until its acquisition by Valeant Pharmaceuticals International, Inc. in 2013, and Valeant Pharmaceuticals International, Inc. from 2013 to 2014. Mr. Hassan has chaired notable pharmaceutical industry organizations including The Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) and The International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers Associations (IFPMA) and is also a member of The Business Council. He received B.S. degree in chemical engineering from the Imperial College of Science and Technology at the University of London and an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School.
Michael London, Former EVP of Merchandising and EVP of Global Sourcing, Best Buy; Former CEO Polaroid
Michael London has 35 years of retail experience with an emphasis in Consumer Electronics and Major Home Appliances. His skill set has resulted from executive roles in Customer Insights and Strategy, Merchandising, Procurement, Global Sourcing and Store Operations.
Michael has always focused on innovation, differentiation, and execution as he works to understand customer needs, both internal and external. He strives to understand what each customer segment needs in order to be successful while anticipating fast-moving technological innovations, customer insights. His rich knowledge of retail enables him to execute ideas into reality.
Michael currently serves as an officer on the Hodges University Foundation Board, a private accredited university serving SW Florida, and is a Board member of the Boys & Girls Club of Lee County, Florida. He shares his time between Florida and Minnesota with his wife Susan.
Michael received a BA in Psychology from Duke University.
Stephen Polk, CEO, Highgate LLC.:
Stephen is based in Detroit, and he currently serves as the CEO of Highgate LLC. Previously, he held various leadership positions including Chairman and CEO at R.L. Polk & Co, an automotive data and marketing solutions leader and owner of Carfax. R.L. Polk & Co was sold to IHS in July 2013 for $1.4 billion.
Stephen holds a Bachelor’s of Science degree from Denison University and is involved in numerous philanthropic and business activities in Southeast Michigan.
Andrea Remyn Stone, Chief Strategy Officer, Dealogic:
Focusing on Dealogic’s growth strategy, Andrea is responsible globally for strategic planning, execution of key strategic initiatives, and acquisitions.
Previously, Andrea was the Head of Corporate and Business Development at Bloomberg L.P. and has held leadership roles at Standard and Poor’s, McGraw-Hill, and Lehman Brothers.
Andrea holds a BA from Duke University and an MBA from The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.