ASPIRE360 TEAM

Built for entrepreneurs by entrepreneurs, Aspire360 is the world’s only peer-to-peer network exclusively for startup CEOs. Connecting with those on a similar entrepreneurial journey has never been easier!

the founders

Eleanor Haglund

Founder, CEO

Multi-award winning, 3-time CEO who excels at communication and culture, Eleanor focuses on bringing out compelling stories and attends Columbia Business School.

Ed Engler

Founder, Lead Coach

Ten-time founder or co-founder, multi-fund manager and super angel, Ed focuses on coaching teams and building value-added capital around great founders and markets.

the coaches

You deserve to have a team of experts at your disposal. Gain access to an entire team of experts including successful serial-entrepreneurs, world-class coaches, venture capitalists, business lawyers, and more.

Dianthe Skurko

Coaching Specialty:
Fundraising, Strategy, Leadership

Whitney Dianthe is a 25 year, startup veteran with three acquisitions to her name. She is an expert in the transformation and hyper-growth of companies and focuses on go-to-market activities. 

She actively sources deals for VCs and angel investors and is interested in supporting founders in femtech, fintech, mental health and wellness and the future of work. 

Ian Magazine

Coaching Specialty:
Operations Strategy, Fundraising, Mergers and Acquisitions

Having raised over $100M in funding and managed 184 acquisitions across industries that include healthcare, robotics, energy, cybersecurity, IT and more, Ian Magazine is a dynamic, bottom line driven business leader.

Ian is best known for his work at Nextel, where he was a founding member of Nextel’s Senior Management team and it’s 1st employee. Nextel was acquired for 35 Billion dollars in 2005.

Shawn Johal

Coaching Specialty:
Scaling Up, Developing Leadership, Building a High Performing Team

Maneesh Sagar is an 8X founder, early stage VC in the New York area, and an Innovation Fellow and Founding Career Coach at Columbia University where he teaches classes on startups and Venture Capital.

Maneesh has worked with companies across domains, including AI, ML, IoT, TMT, CPG, Pharma and Infrastructure. His operational experience and management perspective is invaluable to startups as they negotiate the intricacies of successfully managing their rapid growth.

Adam Paulisick

Coaching Specialty:
Product Development, Sales Strategy

Visionary leader who has led game-changing technology teams.  From design to finance to sales enablement, Adam has  built enormous value with his vast experience and disruptive ideas. He is currently the Chief Product Officer at Headstorm.

Raj Malhotra

Coaching Specialty:
AI, Medical, Space Tech, Fundraising

Raj is a serial innovator with a track record of hacking ideas into transformative enterprises. He has raised $20M from institutional investors as tech founder and CEO, build startups and teams within Fortune 500 companies that generated outsized returns, developed patents in surgical mesh implants, cognitive radio, distributed ledgers, and is developing a quantum computing portfolio. 

Audrey Dunning

Coaching Specialty:
Scaling Businesses, Sales Strategy

Athena award-winning CEO of Summa and long-time corporate sales leader, Audrey is passionate about building teams aligned around compelling culture.

Vikram Lakhwara

Coaching Specialty:
Fundraising Strategy, Business Storytelling

Venture capitalist and storytelling expert. Vik has evaluated and worked with thousands of startups and developed pattern recognition of successful startups. Currently the Managing Director at Green Cow Ventures and former Manager of Startups and Venture Capital at Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati.

Amardeep Kahlon

Coaching Specialty:
Marketing Strategy

20-year veteran of CPG marketing who was recognized in 2019 as #7 Influencer by PRWeek, Amardeep has led numerous creative marketing and innovation campaigns globally that generated a total of over $1b in net new revenue in his career.

Christa Downey

Coaching Specialty:
Personal and Professional Development, Women Leaders

Visionary coach, CPCC certified at the Co-Active Training Institute, the largest coach training institute in the world. Christa has over 20 years of advising and coaching experience, and currently serves as the Director of the Engineering Career Center at Cornell University.

Eric Guy

Coaching Specialty:
Personal and Professional Development, Leadership, Living with Purpose

Eric Guy is the Chief Victory Officer at the Center for Victory. His philosophy is based on the empowerment model where he and his team transfer knowledge through training and support. It’s a process of empowering people, enhancing cultures, and elevating organizations, starting with the leaders who stand at the helm.

Maneesh Sagar

Coaching Specialty:
Fundraising, Operations Strategy

Maneesh Sagar is an 8X founder, early stage VC in the New York area, and an Innovation Fellow and Founding Career Coach at Columbia University where he teaches classes on startups and Venture Capital.

Maneesh has worked with companies across domains, including AI, ML, IoT, TMT, CPG, Pharma and Infrastructure. His operational experience and management perspective is invaluable to startups as they negotiate the intricacies of successfully managing their rapid growth.

Peter Kozodoy

Coaching Specialty:
Scaling Up, Leadership

Peter Kozodoy is the award-winning author of Honest to Greatness, an Inc. 5000 serial entrepreneur, TEDx speaker, and business coach who works with organizations and their leaders to help them overcome self-limiting bullsh*t and use honesty to achieve greatness. His articles on leadership and entrepreneurship have appeared in Forbes, Inc., HuffPost, PR Daily, and more. He holds a BA in economics from Brandeis University and an MBA from Columbia Business School.

the mentors

Our expert mentor network spans industry and specialty. From design to accounting, software to hardware and agriculture to crypto, we have a specialist who can guide you on your journey.

Alice Kuo

Alice is a strong community builder and connector who brings people and stakeholders together into partnerships. She is skilled in program execution and bridges the gap between startup communities in the United States and Asian countries.

Alice is an experienced program manager who ran 50+ international programs with 70+ staff across 15 countries in one year. When COVID-19 started, Alice successfully facilitated virtual accelerator programs and demo days with sponsors. She also managed 100+ high-profile tech and industry mentors. Additionally, her business development skills connect her with key players in the startup communities. Today, Alice focuses on minority, female entrepreneurs, and venture building topics.

Glen Patterson

Multi-time founder currently building the EdTech startup WorkSchool. He has also built communities to support startup founders including the Harlem Tech Summit and Trifecta Ventures. In his free time he angel invests, participates in speaking engagements and is an e-lecturer.

Sneha Lundia Agrawal

Sneha, is the Founder & CEO of Step2Growth, a startup marketing strategist, tech enthusiast, speaker & mentor. She started her career as a Software engineer at Cisco Systems and carved her way to becoming a marketing entrepreneur helping startups. She has a community of over 1000 startup & tech professionals and hosts monthly educational webinars for early-stage
startups. She mentors at leading accelerators like Founder Institute,
CMU Swartz Center for Entrepreneurship and sFoundation.

Andrew Smith

Andrew helps startups scale through brand building, growth marketing, and product development. He’s held leadership growth roles at Joy Labs, private equity firm Techstars (2,300+ startup investments), Upserve (acquired by Lightspeed in 2020), and SendGrid (NYSE: SEND, acquired by Twilio in 2019). Prior to scaling startups, he was a Partner at HCC Marketing, a full-service marketing and advertising agency formerly based in Rhode Island, United States.

Kim Ford

Kim Ford, LEED AP is the Founder and Broker of Record of Found Advisors a commercial real estate company that exclusively represents the tenant/business looking for space. Kim has 22 years of experience in Pittsburgh and helping companies grow in over 120 U.S. markets. Kim is also Founder of Coeo, a platform software company that allows people to connect with move-in ready flexible workspace. She serves on the Executive Committee and Board of Directors of Exis, a global tenant representation organization. Kim has worked with many startups who are looking for office, industrial or manufacturing space.

Tony Yang

Tony is a 15+ year B2B marketing veteran, with the past 13 years as the marketing leader at various technology startups, including Mintigo (backed by Sequoia, acquired by Anaplan in 2019), Qordoba, and most recently Zinier. He is a “full stack” marketer, with expertise in demand generation and growth marketing, messaging and positioning, go-to-market strategies, revenue/marketing operations, and campaign execution. He’s been recognized as an ABM thought leader and speaker at past events including FlipMyFunnel and SiriusDecisions. 

Lexie Ma

Lexie Ma is an integrated marketing and communication professional. Lexie is experienced in cross-cultural marketing strategies, product marketing campaign development, and program management. She is experienced in the Chinese technology landscape. Currently leads the consumer marketing at DJI North America, the global market leader in aerial imaging systems.

Brian Lenart

Brian has more than 20 years of experience in public accounting, managing and supervising tax assignments for retail, manufacturing, professional services, healthcare,
distribution and not-for-profit clients. He specializes in federal and state tax services for private clients. Brian’s tax experience has been sought by a number of media outlets, including Main Street Tax Solutions and the Pittsburgh Business Times. Prior to joining Baker Tilly, Brian spent 10 years with an international accounting firm.

Igor Volovich

Strategist, advisor, mentor, author, speaker, and global cyber leader. Internationally experienced cyber security executive and senior advisor with 20+ years of service to the world’s largest private and public-sector entities, Fortune 100 firms, US legislative and executive branches, and regulatory agencies. 

Michael Lopiansky

2 X founder, investor, advisor, and ‘simplifier of solutions’. Michael assists founders and Product Managers, design ideas, solutions, and scaling. He’s held product and growth roles @ eXoloop, Protosure & RestoreSkills. In addition, Michael has mentored countless teams via Google Launchpad, EPI, OU Impact, and CornellTech’s Runway Ph.D. incubator.

Aryuna Merdygeeva

Aryuna has broad experience in the business development, operations, and finance fields. Currently, she is a co-founder at Nucleus and Head of Business Development. Also, she is an Advisor at Signum.ai.

She was the Director of Strategic Partnerships & Community at Starta Ventures, a New-York-City-Based seed-stage digital technology-focused venture capital fund with over 130 portfolio companies with Founders from around the world. She was responsible for portfolio companies support, including investor introductions and pitches review, growing a community of startups, hosting pitch contests and workshops with invited investors and executives, and writing a VC trends 2021 report.

Caroline Rakus-Wojciechowski

Caroline is a sustainability consultant, startup and business mentor for founders looking to help design and implement the next wave of creative social innovation in youth empowerment, education, etc to achieve the Decade of Action and Agenda 2030. She is a Harvard alum, a Guest Speaker for Harvard University’s StudioLab on Creativity and Entrepreneurship and startup mentor for the Lemann Program on Creativity and Entrepreneurship

Diego Kolsky

Diego is a design executive with deep experience transforming businesses, markets, and cultures around the world. He leads the design of products, services, and relationship programs for global businesses, category leaders and industry challengers.

Jenny Fernandez

Jenny Fernandez is a marketing leader, executive coach, start-up advisor, and marketing professor at Columbia and New York Universities. With over 20 years of experience managing, launching, growing brands, Jenny brings incredible expertise in the fields of marketing, strategic growth and leadership transformation. She has managed multi-million-dollar businesses in Mondelez International, Kraft Foods, Accenture, Merlin Entertainments, and Loacker USA.

Kevin Stevens

Kevin is an experienced operator and investor with a demonstrated history of success as a product and strategy leader within high-growth startups and the energy industry.

Areas of specialties include product management, new product development, operational finance, business development, strategic planning, and sales.

Brian Schmitz

Over the last eight years, Brian has studied, targeted, and partnered with some of the most successful startups in Silicon Valley. Using proven go-to-market, demand generation, and brand-building strategies and tactics have impacted SVB and its fantastic client-base. His time at Silicon Valley Bank remains the high point of a 20-year career. Brian also spends time mentoring entrepreneurs worldwide as a part of the Miller Center for Social Entrepreneurship.

Ted Sabety

Ted Sabety founded Sabety +associates, a law and consulting firm in the technology and electronic media fields. His practice ranges from advising technology companies regarding the development, exploitation, and protection of their intellectual property to advising electronic media industry clients on strategic issues regarding digital content distribution. Most recently, one of his long-time clients, ShopKeep, was acquired for $440 Million.

Andrew Shulkind

Since founding Andigo, Andrew Schulkind has asked clients two simple question: what does digital marketing success look like, and how can marketing progress be measured? Andigo’s work includes web design and development, content marketing, and digital strategy, with a goal of helping firms encourage audience engagement through solid information architecture, a great user experience, and compelling content. A dash of common sense doesn’t hurt, either.

Michel Bézy

Dr. Michel Bézy is a retired Distinguished Service Professor from Carnegie Mellon University (CMU).
He is the co-founder of the kLab Innovation Center in Kigali and the Industry Innovation Lab at CMU Africa. While in Africa, he launched several startup projects with CMU graduates. Currently Dr. Bezy is mentoring startups in Africa and in North Carolina, USA where he resides, and teaches as adjunct professor at CMU Africa. He is frequently invited as an innovation evaluation judge in Africa and the US.

Kathleen Kuznicki

Kathleen Kuznicki is a Patent Attorney registered with the United States Patent and Trademark Office. She works with both individuals and businesses, including start-up companies, to protect some of their most valuable assets, their intellectual property. Kathleen earned her JD from the Duquesne University School of Law. She has a B.S. in Biology from the Pennsylvania State University, a PhD in Microbiology-Medicine from the University of Missouri-Columbia, and 5 years post-doctoral research experience in the Department of Neurobiology at the University of Pittsburgh.

Josh Gould

Josh is Director of Innovation at Duquesne Light Company, where he leads the Company’s Innovation Center, identifies and maintains a portfolio of innovation opportunities, and serves as the principal liaison with external parties focused on innovation. He has also had multiple stints in the startup world, first as founder and CEO and later as part of an expansion stage startup in a variety of roles.

Josh has a Certificate in Electrical Engineering from Siemens Power Academy, a Master’s of Business Administration from Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth, and a bachelor’s degree from Claremont McKenna College.

Jessica Slean

Jessica Slean of KPMG LLP provides general tax consulting services for start-ups. Specifically, Jessica provides support related to Federal, state and international R&D credits and other incentives, such as a special deduction for income derived from foreign sources. Jessica can assist with establishing appropriate methods on your initial income tax filings and with other general tax questions, including questions around accounting for income taxes.

David Oberdick

David Oberdick’s business litigation experience includes cases involving issues of intellectual property, such as infringement and misappropriation litigation, restrictive covenants, licensing disputes, injunction proceedings, and related breach of contract issues. Over the last 25 plus years, Oberdick has also counseled and litigated significant claims for clients in other complex commercial matters, such as disputes relating to insurance coverage, oil and gas title and leasing, shareholder conflicts, accountant malpractice, defamation, rights of publicity/privacy and antitrust.

Megan Shaw

Megan Shaw is an entrepreneurial leader with a passion for shaping early-stage chaos into sustainable growth. Megan has worked with several early-stage companies where she held a variety of operational, marketing and business development roles in a leadership capacity. She was the first employee at HemoSonics, a point-of-care diagnostics company that developed a novel coagulation analyzer. Over eight years she helped lead it through multiple fundraises, product development, product launch, commercialization and acquisition by a multinational. She currently consults for start-ups in the healthcare space and assists with the NIH’s RADx program to rapidly expand covid testing.

Tim Fletcher

Tim Fletcher helps companies develop new initiatives through the use of Design Thinking methods. These methods include idea generation, visualization, user research and prototyping. He brings
a user-centric viewpoint to discover unarticulated needs and wants. He has worked with startups to Fortune 500 companies. He also works as an expert witness in Design Patent, Trade Dress and Utility Patent cases and has a keen understanding of intellectual property protection. He also has a deep understanding of new product development, from
initial design to contract manufacturing worldwide.

Gina Fleitman

Gina has spent three decades helping companies open new markets and build a powerful customer base. As the Sales and Marketing Consultant for Angel Bridge Partners, Gina has helped companies build customer bases for industries ranging from commercial construction to higher education to cannabis, in practices including SaaS, artificial intelligence, and robotics.

Jeff Brown

Jeff Brown is a proven consumer marketer in the consumer healthcare industry (18 years with GSK Consumer Healthcare) and in the B to B to C space with Polyconcept. He has developed successful consumer growth strategies for a range of consumer brands and businesses. He has also built and managed salesforces and customer service groups. He is currently a Board Director for a number of consumer oriented businesses/brands. He has a BA in Economics/Math from Colby College and an MBA from Harvard University.

Bruce Smith

Bruce Smith has more than 50 years of domestic and international sales and sales management experience in the IT environment. Bruce Smith was previously the Senior Vice President of Commercial Operations for Paradigm Solutions, a $65 million software and IT solutions company, leading sales strategy, the building of an effective sales force and closing new business. He has held executive positions with PSI Net, iGate Corporation, Westinghouse Communications and BT North America.

Lynne Porter

Lynne is an entrepreneurial, results-driven physician executive passionate about biomedical product development and its use in improving the quality and delivery of healthcare. She has served as an Associate Professor of Medicine at the University of Pittsburgh, Director of Gastroenterology Outpatient Department, and Executive in Residence at Carnegie Mellon’s Swartz Center for Entrepreneurship.

Randy Eager

Randy has over 35 years of successful start-up, product commercialization, sales, and management experience in a wide range of companies and industries. He is the Managing Director of the Founder Institute Pittsburgh, a Palo Alto based idea accelerator that coaches new entrepreneurs on the proper way to build and launch a startup through a 14 week program. As CEO, he has raised $10M, built motivated teams, introduced award-winning products, and generated millions in revenue. He also spent time on the investor side, at Innovation Works, where he led 15 investments in seed stage companies as an EIR.

Brian Finneran

Brian Finneran is the Owner of Finneran & Associates, LLC a Pittsburgh-based accounting and financial consulting firm. Brian is a Certified Public Accountant. He earned a BS in Accounting from The Pennsylvania State University and an MBA from the University of Pittsburgh. Brian began his career with Deloitte working as a member of the audit staff. He then spent 18 years in senior financial management positions for Pittsburgh based corporations. In 2004 Brian founded Finneran & Associates which provides provided accounting and financial consulting to startups and small privately held businesses.

Jeannine Siviy

Jeannine is a versatile business and technology strategist with a knack for recognizing undiscovered possibilities and finding the path through complexity and ambiguity.

​She has delivered business and technical innovations, across a broad range of domains and disciplines: healthcare, data & analytics, manufacturing, government; systems and software engineering, control systems, process engineering and automation and tech transition. She holds engineering degrees from Purdue and RIT, and CalTech’s certificate in Technology & Innovation Management.

Jeff Lizik

Jeff has achieved major marketing & sales success working with brands like Huggies, Kleenex and Bagel Bites along with Small Businesses. He has a unique view of and appreciation for ensuring every aspect of a digital marketing plan is seamless and strategic no matter what size the business is or how many employees are involved.

At his company, RedShift, he helps Marketing Executives (CMOs, VPs, Directors, etc.) and Small Business Owners attract clients, increase revenue and stand out from the crowd online by creating & implementing customized digital marketing plans.

Janine Jelks-Seale

Janine is an experienced professional with past roles within Fortune 500 firms, local and federal government, and non-profit organizations serving communities, freedom of speech, and social justice. She has a long track-record of supporting entrepreneurs, new artists, and developing new concepts.

​Janine has a Master’s Degree in Public Policy and Management from Carnegie Mellon’s Heinz College.

Dave D'Angelo

Dave is the Program Lead, E-Teams for VentureWell, a company on a mission to support entrepreneurs, inventors and innovators solve the world’s biggest challenges. He is also a strategic advisor to the World Wildlife Fund. He has previously worked as a founder of social ventures.

He received his BA in Criminal Justice and International Affairs from Champlain College.

Michael Stuart

Michael Stuart is an industry-leading commercial real estate professional with more than nine years of property acquisition, disposition, finance, and leasing experience and an award-winning record of annual transaction volume.

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We help startup CEOs build better businesses through support and coaching, and right now you can try us out for 30-days FREE!