Going to MIT as an undergrad (1993-1998), I was surrounded by a lot of entrepreneurs. This rubbed off on me and I started a company when I was a junior and moved to New York City for a year.
When I came to Duke for my MBA at Fuqua (2002-2004), I was still interested in entrepreneurship, but realized the environment wasn't as conducive to entrepreneurship. In an independent study with Prof. Kip Frey, I did some research on what Fuqua should do to be a top entrepreneurial school. In addition to maxing out my entrepreneurship courses, I also went through the year-long TEC Program at NC State.
I worked at the Council for Entrepreneurial Development (CED), where I ran the Entrepreneur Development Programs (FastTrac, Innovator's Workshop, STREAK, Entrepreneurs Only Workshops). I also did some executive search for local startups. Came back to Fuqua in 2007. Jon Fjeld and Wes Cohen had created the Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation in 2005, and they wanted me to help.
Around the same time, I joined the Global Board of the MIT Enterprise Forum.
With Jon Fjeld and T. Reid Lewis, we founded the Duke Global Entrepreneurship Network (DukeGEN) in April of 2008. Jon and I also started the Program for Entrepreneurs (P4E) that summer. He architected it based on his experience with the Duke New Ventures Clinic.
I also got more hands on with the Duke Start-Up Challenge, taking on an advisory and producing role. Each year since then has been about improving P4E, DukeGEN and the Duke Start-Up Challenge.
I feel really lucky to be doing what I'm doing and I hope to do this for many many years. I've met some amazing people through this role. Thank you all for making this such a fun and meaningful ride. You are awesome.
I have a beautiful wife and two great kids.