Carla Garrett, Chair
Corporate Partner, Potomac Law Group PLLC
Carla is a Partner at Potomac Law Group PLLC in the firm’s corporate group, where she advises small businesses on corporate, securities, acquisitions, and contract law matters. She also serves as outside general counsel to a number of small businesses, with a particular focus on startup and technology companies. Carla is the CEO of Garrett Book Company, a family-owned book business. Previously, she was the first General Counsel of CoStar Group, Inc., a NASDAQ-traded public company. She also practiced as a corporate securities attorney at Sullivan & Cromwell and Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati.
Jeffrey M. Solomon, Vice Chair
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Cowen, Inc.
New York, NY
Jeff is the Chairman and CEO of Cowen, Inc., a publicly-traded small capitalization financial services company. Cowen connects growth companies with capital providers, active investment managers with research and trade execution services, and institutional and private clients with private equity and hedge fund investment solutions. Jeff previously served as Cowen’s President, COO, and Head of Investment Banking and is a founding partner of Cowen Investment Management (formerly known as Ramius).
Gregory Yadley, Secretary
Partner, Shumaker, Loop & Kendrick, LLP
Greg is a partner and chair of the corporate practice group in the Tampa, Florida, office of Shumaker, Loop & Kendrick LLP. He represents entities of all sizes in financing transactions, mergers and acquisitions, public and private securities offerings, contract negotiations and disputes, and advises them on compliance, governance and disclosure matters. Greg also serves of the board of directors of Helios Technologies, Inc., a manufacturing company listed on NASDAQ. He taught as an adjunct professor at the University of Florida College of Law and is past chair of the American Bar Association Middle Market and Small Business Committee and The Florida Bar Business Law Section.
Youngro Lee, Assistant Secretary
CEO and Co-Founder, NextSeed
Youngro is the CEO/Co-Founder of NextSeed Inc., a FinTech platform that enables small businesses to raise capital online from their community, and COO of Republic, a marketplace powered by a retail investment infrastructure that provides access to private investments in tech startups, real estate, gaming, and digital assets. Prior to entering the online investment industry, Youngro was a corporate attorney at Cleary Gottlieb, Kirkland & Ellis, and Weil Gotshal in the US, Europe and Asia focused on private fund formation and private investments. He is passionate about building amazing places in local communities and creating opportunities for entrepreneurs.
Founder and General Partner, Impact America Fund
Kesha is the founder and general partner of Impact America Fund based in Oakland, California. Impact America Fund invests in best-in-class entrepreneurs who are scaling software and technology-enabled solutions targeting market opportunities that bring business efficiency, market transparency, and non-predatory consumer options to America's underserved communities. Kesha has nearly a decade of experience making early stage investments in mission-driven companies. Prior to founding IAF, Kesha was an investment associate at Bridges Ventures in the UK. She was also an operational consultant to small businesses in inner-city Los Angeles and a mergers and acquisitions analyst at Merrill Lynch.
Gregory J. Dean*
Senior Vice President of the Office of Government Affairs, FINRA
Greg is Senior Vice President of the Office of Government Affairs at FINRA, a not-for-profit self-regulatory organization that regulates member brokerage firms and securities markets. Before joining FINRA, Greg was Senior Director of Regulatory & Government Affairs at the Royal Bank of Canada, and also had served for more than 14 years in a variety of roles on Capitol Hill, including as Chief Counsel for the U.S. Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs. Greg began his career at the U.S. Small Business Administration, Office of Advocacy.
National Managing Partner, Professional Standards Group, Grant Thornton LLP
Bert is the National Managing Partner of the Professional Standards Group at Grant Thornton LLP in Chicago, IL. In this role, he manages the Accounting Principles, Audit Methodology, SEC Reporting, Independence, Professional Practice and audit training functions for the firm, whose practice focuses on public companies in the Russell 2000 and smaller cap entities. Bert has extensive experience with IPOs and other capital raising activities. He also consults with businesses throughout the country on complex accounting matters.
Co-Chair, Fenwick & West LLP’s Life Sciences Practice
Stephen is Managing Partner of the Seattle Office of Fenwick & West LLP, which he founded in 2008. He concentrates in the areas of private and public M&A, public offerings, private placements and corporate governance matters. His diverse practice is focused on the representation of emerging and established high growth companies, essentially serving as an extension of the senior management teams and boards of directors. Stephen also serves on the board of directors of Washington Federal, Inc., a bank holding company listed on NASDAQ.
CEO and Co-Founder, CrowdCheck, Inc.
Sara is co-founder and CEO of CrowdCheck and Managing Partner of CrowdCheck Law, which together provide a wide range of legal, due diligence, disclosure and compliance services for online capital formation. Before founding CrowdCheck, Sara was GC of the Congressional Oversight Panel, the overseer of the Troubled Asset Relief Program. She also was previously a partner at Clifford Chance, advising on securities and corporate matters, and earlier in her career served in the SEC’s Division of Corporation Finance, where she led the team that drafted new regulations governing the international capital markets.
Chief Business Affairs and Legal Officer, Upwork Inc.
Santa Clara, CA
Brian is the Chief Business Affairs and Legal Officer at Upwork Inc., an online talent solution that enables businesses to find and work with highly-skilled independent professionals. Brian helped navigate Upwork through its IPO in 2018, and oversees the company’s legal, regulatory, and government affairs functions. Previously, he served in a leadership role at eBay Inc., where he began as eBay’s first corporate attorney and later its Deputy General Counsel. Before joining eBay, Brian served as Vice President, Legal at Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Inc. and as a corporate attorney at Latham & Watkins LLP.
Associate Administrator for the Office of Capital Access, U.S Small Business Administration
Bill is the U.S. Small Business Administration's Chief of Staff and Associate Administrator for the Office of Capital Access. His office guarantees loans made by banks and other lending partners to small business that cannot otherwise obtain financing on reasonable terms. Since his appointment in March 2017, Bill has taken responsibility over the SBA’s loan program policy, technology, operations and oversight. Prior to his current SBA roles, Bill served as Managing Director at Brock Capital Group, a boutique investment bank, where he advised and supported small to medium sized enterprises in their efforts to raise capital and expand their businesses.
General Counsel & Chief Compliance Officer, Rise of the Rest Seed Fund; Associate General Counsel, Revolution
Sapna is Associate General Counsel at Revolution and General Counsel and Chief Compliance Officer at Revolution’s Rise of the Rest Seed Fund. Rise of the Rest Seed Funds are focused on spotlighting regional startup hubs through road trip bus tours and investing in early-stage, high-growth companies across the country. Prior to joining Revolution, Sapna was Deputy General Counsel of LivingSocial, Inc., and Assistant General Counsel for Extend Health, Inc. She also practiced in the corporate department at Latham & Watkins LLP.
Martha Legg Miller*
Director, Office of the Advocate for Small Business Capital Formation, U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission
Martha is the first Director of the SEC’s Office of the Advocate for Small Business Capital Formation. The office advocates for small businesses and their investors by conducting outreach, providing assistance to resolve significant problems, analyzing the potential small business impact of proposed regulations, and recommending changes to mitigate capital formation issues and promote the interests of small businesses and their investors. Prior to joining the SEC, Martha was a partner at the law firm Balch & Bingham LLP in Birmingham, Alabama, where she represented companies and investors across a spectrum of corporate transactions.
Founder and CEO of BlueTree Capital Group, BlueTree Allied Angels, and BlueTree Venture Fund
Catherine is a founder and CEO of BlueTree Capital Group, BlueTree Allied Angels, and the BlueTree Venture Fund, based in western Pennsylvania. The Blue Tree entities invest in early stage companies and Series A rounds of investment. Catherine has served as a director on the board of multiple portfolio companies. She is a past Chairman of the Angel Capital Association and the Angel Resource Institute. Prior to forming her own business, Catherine worked 17 years in corporate banking management.
CEO and Founder, Biena Snacks
Poorvi is CEO and Founder of Biena Snacks, a pioneer in plant-based snacks. Since the company’s launch in 2012, Poorvi and her team have grown distribtuion of Biena’s Chickpea Snacks and Baked Cheese Puffs to over 15,000 retail locations and the company has been named to Inc. 5000’s Fastest Growing Companies for two consecutive years. The company has raised capital from angel investors, family offices and venture capital funds. Prior to founding Biena, Poorvi was a brand strategy consultant at Lippincott, and Associate Brand Manager at McNeil Nutritional, Johnson & Johnson.
Michael S. Pieciak*
Commissioner of the Vermont Department of Financial Regulation
Mike is Commissioner of the Vermont Department of Financial Regulation, the state agency charged with regulation and monitoring of financial industry activities in Vermont, including oversight of the securities industry. Prior to his appointment, Mike practiced law at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP in the Mergers and Acquisitions Group, gaining experience in commercial transactions, corporate governance and investment and financing transactions. Mike has held multiple leadership roles within the North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA), and was appointed to serve as the NASAA representative to the Advisory Committee.
Chief Investment Officer, Techstars
Jason is a Techstars Venture Partner and the Chief Investment Officer of Techstars, a worldwide network helping entrepreneurs. Techstars operates startup programs, accelerators, and corporate innovation partnerships. Techstars also has a venture capital fund which funds startups in all verticals and has invested in more than 1,900 of its companies. Prior to joining Techstars, Jason was founder of Slicehost, an early cloud computing hosting company that was acquired by Rackspace and became the core of the initial Cloud Servers product.
Marc Oorloff Sharma*
Chief Counsel of the Office of the Investor Advocate, U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission
Marc is Chief Counsel of the SEC’s Office of the Investor Advocate and leads that Office’s Legal and Policy team. Prior to joining the Office of the Investor Advocate, Marc served in several other SEC roles, including in the Division of Investment Management and the Office of the General Counsel. Before joining the SEC, Marc worked in private law practice where he counseled small businesses on corporate and transactional matters.
President, AltaMax, LLC
New Orleans, LA
Hank leads Alta Max, LLC, a specialty packaging and tamper-evident security products supplier. The company is a certified service-disabled, veteran-owned small business. Hank is also the founder of The Frontier Conference, which brings together innovation leaders from the industrial sector. Hank has been an investor, board member and founder, with a focus on early venture and middle market companies in the industrials, energy, technology, transportation and financial services sectors.
President and CEO, Applied Genetic Technologies Corporation
Sue was founding CEO of and leads AGTC, which uses a novel gene therapy platform to develop products designed to transform the lives of patients with severe orphan genetic diseases, building the company from a small academic spin-out to a leader in the field. Sue led the company through raising venture capital funding, an initial public offering on NASDAQ, a subsequent underwritten public offering and two major partnerships resulting in over $330 of cash in-flows and completion of critical scientific milestones. In addition to her career with AGTC, Sue brings experience working with multiple start-ups and entrepreneurial firms, as well as with Abbott Labs and Eli Lilly & Company.
*Committee members include the SEC’s Advocate for Small Business Capital Formation and three non-voting members appointed by each of the SEC’s Investor Advocate, the North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA), and the Small Business Administration, as well as an observer appointed by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA).
Modified: Dec. 10, 2020