2019 Competition Group Photo


Mario Casabona

Mario M. Casabona is an entrepreneur and active angel investor. In 2012, he founded TechLaunch, committed to identifying and nurturing early stage tech ventures. They provide mentoring, coaching and make resources and capital available to these ventures. To date, TechLaunch has supported over 100 tech companies and mentored over 200 aspiring entrepreneurs. In 2006, he founded Casabona Ventures, investing in over 30 seed and early stage companies. In 1982, he founded Electro-Radiation Inc., which was acquired by Honeywell International in 2004. He received the Small Business Administration National Tibbett’s Award for his contributions in technology. He was listed as one of the top five most influential persons in New Jersey technology by The Star-Ledger. He was recognized twice by the New Jersey Technology Council, (now TechUnited:NJ). First he was the recipient of their Financier of the Year Award and subsequently their Legend of Technology Award. Mario serves on the College of Science and Math (CSAM) Advisory Board at Montclair State University. He is Chairman Emeritus of Jumpstart NJ Angel Network and Chairman Emeritus of the R&D Council of New Jersey. He also enjoys serving on the Boards of various for-profit and non-for-profit organizations. Mr. Casabona is an electrical engineer with twelve national and international patents in the satellite-based navigation and communications field.

Harvey H. Homan

Harvey D. Homan, PHD, MBA – K4-MA North Jersey Chapter President. Dr. Homan currently is a member of Keiretsu Forum (K4-Mid Atlantic) and Jumpstart NJ Angel Network. He has served as a Corporate Executive, Founder, Director, CEO, Investor and Advisor to pharmaceutical, biotech, medical device, and digital health companies. His professional experiences have fueled his passion for innovation and entrepreneurship. Harvey held Senior Leadership roles at Sterling Health and Boots Company with US, European, and Global responsibilities. He was involved in new product development, clinical, regulatory, sales, and strategic marketing. His groups had responsibility to commercializing dozens leading consumer brands products. Brands included Bayer, Neurofen, Strepsils, Midol, Phillips, Diaparene and E45. Harvey serves on Advisory Boards for the Therapeutics (TRx) and Biomedical Device (BioMedx) Accelerators at Columbia University Medical Center. He is also a participant in NYU Endless Frontier Labs for life sciences. He has served as NSF I-Corps mentor and faculty member. Additionally, mentor/advisor for the UGA College of Pharmacy and Graduate School, TechUnited NJ, and TechLaunch. Previously he served with NYU Berkley Center, Blackstone Launchpad@NYU, EDC@NJIT. He has supported numerous early-stage companies from formation through early commercialization. He holds a PhD in Neuropharmacology from UGA, and MBA, from NYU Stern.

Paul Lewis

Paul Lewis is the Founder and CEO of Calamu, a data protection company. Calamu focuses on eliminating the risk of data breaches and ransomware attacks. He was also the Founder and CEO of PG Lewis LLC, a cyber-security and data forensics company. This company was strategically acquired by Robert Half International (NYSE:RHI). Lewis was the Founder and CEO of MC2, a data security company strategically acquired by Volt Information Sciences (NYSE:VOL). Lewis, a serial entrepreneur, is the past president of The Entrepreneurs Organization and enjoys mentoring future leaders. He and his wife have four children and reside in Hunterdon County, NJ.

Kris Ohleth

Kris Ohleth has worked in the offshore wind industry for over 15 years, since the industry’s US inception. Holding senior positions with offshore wind developers, NGOs, and state agencies, she has gained critical insights into policy and regulations. These elements shape offshore wind activities at the state, regional and federal levels. Kris has extensive experience working with offshore wind stakeholders and has expert knowledge of such engagements. Currently, as the Director of the Special Initiative on Offshore Wind at the University of Delaware, she leads the organizations responsible and sustainable strategic development. Originally from New Jersey, Kris is a Rutgers graduate, has a Master’s degree from the University of Rhode Island. She currently lives in Morris County, New Jersey with her husband and retired-racing greyhounds.

Judith Sheft

Judith Sheft is the Executive Director of the New Jersey Commission of Science, Innovation and Technology. The Commission’s mission is to accelerate economic development in New Jersey through science, innovation and technology. This includes stimulating academic-industrial collaboration and encouraging and supporting entrepreneurs and inventors. Previously she was involved with regional economic and cluster development. This included responsibilities at the New Jersey Innovation Institute @ NJIT for the HealthIT Connections entrepreneurial cluster development program. This is in addition to her involvement with the NJIT I-Corps Site and the Procurement Technical Assistance Center. Judith has participated in many technology/IP innovation and commercialization efforts. Through these programs she has worked with faculty and students creating startup companies and corporate partners establishing licensing relationships. She advised external startups at NJIT’s high technology / life sciences business accelerator/ incubator. She is on NJIT Murray Women’s Center Board of Advisors providing coaching and mentorship to students and faculty. She is a member of the NJ – Israel Commission and serves on the Board of Greater Newark Enterprise Corporation, StartUp Newark, Women’s Center for Entrepreneurship Corporation, Einstein’s Alley, SheTek and NJEDA Technology Advisory Board, working to assist early stage tech and life sciences entrepreneurs foster regional economic growth. She was a co-chair of Governor Murphy’s transition advisory committee for Technology Government and Innovation in 2017.