2022 FCI Faculty
John is the owner and founder of Creative Collective LLC, Creative North Shore and John Andrews Photography. John has spent the past decade advocating and fostering the importance of the creative workforce and the role it plays in inclusive and sustainable communities. Through the process he has begun to unravel the mystery of why there is an unbalance bias and gap between traditional and ‘creative’ businesses and has established Creative Collective to work with modern, open minded creators and businesses looking to make the world a more artistic, inclusive, cultural, equitable and creative place.
Alex Boches is a partner at FORM Life Ventures and has over 10 years of experience building and growing health and wellness startups. Alex invests in early-stage companies that are developing technologies and services that enable proactive healthcare and help people to live healthier and happier lives. Prior to joining FORM, Alex was an established leader in the personalized nutrition space, leading Boston-based Baze Labs as its COO through a successful US launch and acquisition in 2020. Alex has worked with numerous companies, from Fortune 20 to seed stage startups, to develop successful strategies and build impactful businesses in the health and wellness space.
Laci Chisholm is the Founder and CEO of Fit4Dance, a dance fitness studio dedicated to bringing quality and affordable dance and fitness instruction to communities that need it the most. Laci established Fit4Dance to encourage black women to take charge of their health through exercise, to unify diverse groups of people through the common love of dance, and to organize charitable giving and volunteer opportunities within the community. She's been named 2020 Entrepreneur of the Year by the SBA for the State of New York as well as the Women's Business Outreach Center, selected by American Express and IFundWomen for their prestigious 100 for 100 program, and many more awards for her business acumen as well as her dynamic work in the community.
Jon Edelson, MD
Jon Edelson, MD, is Chairman, CEO, President and Founder of Eirion Therapeutics, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company developing innovative aesthetic medicine products addressing wrinkles, hair loss and hair greying. Dr. Edelson has over 25 years of experience starting and running health care companies, including Anterios, which he led through its acquisition by Allergan, and Advanced Health which he led through initial and secondary public stock offerings on NASDAQ. Dr. Edelson has been awarded multiple patents for his inventions. In prior years, Dr. Edelson has been the lead author for articles published in peer-reviewed medical journals such as the Journal of the American Medical Association. Dr. Edelson is currently an advisor to the not-for-profit organization Health Leads.
Anthony Gregorio is a business strategy and operations leader with a focus on seed- and growth-stage companies with social impact objectives. He has built several businesses from the ground up and is currently responsible for the success and growth of 17 family-owned and operated businesses ranging in size from $1M to $50M revenue. Anthony graduated from Harvard University in 2008 with a degree in social psychology and is a proud member of the First Gen Harvard Alumni Association (first generation in his family to attend college). When he's not working you'll find him doting on his two little girls or hiking and trekking in the White Mountains.
Sheryl Henderson is a commercial loan officer at Cape Ann Savings Bank. She is a results-oriented banking professional with over ten years of successful industry experience. Sheryl is a top performer with a track record of consistently meeting or exceeding branch goals and customer expectations. And, she is skilled at educating customers and employees on banking solutions that help customers meet their short and long-term goals.
Renee Jacavanco is the founder of Business Services Unlimited Inc. She has been an accountant for 35 years. Renee founded the company in 1990 and offers accounting and financial management at the CFO level for profit and non-profit companies. She believes in setting up companies to make a profit and run efficiently, automating as many functions as possible. Renee has an extensive background in accounting, QuickBooks, budgeting, forecasting, reporting, forensics, analysis as well as experience in preparing financial statements and year-end reports. Renee enjoys getting clients set up on quickbooks and teaching them how to run their company efficiently.
Erina is the founder of a plant-based energy bite company called Bliss Bites. She was recently appointed as the Executive Director of the Cape Ann YMCA. Previously, Erina was the Ecosystem Lead at Bright Ventures, a venture capital and leadership firm focused on investing in an inclusive economy. Erina's past experience includes overseeing transformative learning programs designed to mitigate racial bias in asset management, venture capital, and philanthropy. She was the founding Associate Director of the Social Impact Lab at Lynn University in South Florida, and was on the leadership team of the Middlebury Institute’s Center for Social Impact Learning where she was on the founding team of an award-winning impact investing and social enterprise talent development program called the Frontier Market Scouts.
Claudia Paraschiv is an architect, public artist, and educator. Born in Romania and raised in Los Angeles, Claudia now lives with her family in Salem MA, where she started her design practice, Studioful in 2016 as a woman-owned, exploratory enterprise engaged in architecture, community art, and neighborhood design. Studioful's mission is to take on projects that connect people to place, to each other, and to themselves through participatory design. Studioful takes on a varied constellation of projects for more meaningful living, asking the question: How can we transform our world for the Common Good?
Karen Ristuben is an arts leader and creative connector based in her hometown of Gloucester, MA. Karen serves as Program Director of Creative County Initiative, building cross-sector support for arts, culture, and creativity with the Essex County Community Foundation (ECCF). With a visual art and music practice as time allows, Karen brings her experience in advocacy, education, and nonprofit management to her community-focused work in the arts. With ECCF and its collaborators, Karen is committed to helping build an equitable and sustainable ecosystem for artists and cultural organizations across the thirty-four diverse communities of Essex County.
Heather Ritchie has over 15 years of experience defining and bringing business and consumer digital and technology solutions to market. She has spent her career in healthcare and wellness, holding a variety of roles in health technology, biopharma, and payer companies, and even state government. She held senior product management roles at WebMD Health Services, Anthem, Eliza (an HMS Company), and Real Endpoints prior to joining Embr Labs in June 2019 to lead product strategy. Heather has a BA in Biochemical Sciences from Harvard University and MS in Healthcare Management from Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.
Roger Smerage, Esq.
Roger L. Smerage is an attorney with Ruberto, Israel & Weiner, P.C., a Boston-based law firm that provides business law services throughout the region and across the U.S. He has been practicing law for more than a decade and focuses his practice on complex commercial and banking litigation. Roger has represented construction companies, national and local banks, wireless telephone companies, real estate developers, and other businesses in disputes large and small.
Jorge Veloz is the owner and operator of Pentagon Studio, a digital marketing company and design studio that provides businesses with digital marketing services, SEO, web design, graphic design, branding, and digital strategy. Jorge values the creative process, working with creatives and businesses, and showing his originality through working with his clients.
FCI Business Roundtable Panelists
SPONSORED BY THE GREATER CAPE ANN CHAMBER OF COMMERCE
Sash Dulong Juice Plus
Kate Noonan Owner, Common Crow Natural Market
Gayle Piraino President and Founder, GAP Promo
Caitlin Pszenny General Manager, Cape Ann Lanes
Sarah Slifer Swift MAGMA Director
Dr. Yvonne Smikle Physician at Middlesex Recovery
Tucker and Elise Smith Co-owners, Cedar Rock Gardens
FCI Pitch Panel
Alex Boches Partner at FORM Life Ventures
Pamela Bynum Principal Consultant, Bynara, Ltd.
Martha Gray Founder of linQ and MIT Professor of Medical and Electrical Engineering
Kat Lawlor Executive Director, Entrepreneurship for All (EforAll)
Laura O'Neill Development Director, Pathways for Children
Ken Riehl CEO, Greater Cape Ann Chamber of Commerce
Heather Ritchie Senior Vice President, Product and Corporate Strategy at Embr Labs
Paul Romary Former (retired) CEO of Shattuck Hospital
Rich Weissman Assistant Professor, Endicott College