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    Justin Brunson

    Justin Brunson

    Associate Director

    Justin joined the CMI in 2016, while completing his BS in Business Administration from the University of Utah. He enjoys reading and studying topics including organizational behavior and neuroscience as it relates to creativity and optimal psychological states. In his free time, he also “enjoys” cursing at golf balls up until there is adequate snow to tie a few sticks to his feet instead. He is also constantly looking for any excuse to be 30,000 feet in the air.

    justin.brunson@hsc.utah.edu

    801.587.7281

    Troy D'Ambrosio

    Troy D'Ambrosio

    Executive Director (Interim)

    Troy D’Ambrosio serves as the Executive Director (Interim) of the Center for Medical Innovation, as well as the Executive Director of the Lassonde Entrepreneur Institute, assistant dean at the David Eccles School of Business and holds a Presidential Chair in Entrepreneurship at the U.

    D’Ambrosio is co-founder, officer, and director of multiple startup companies that have attracted over $500 million in capital. He has served as the VP of investor relations and corporate communication for American Stores Company, a NYSE listed company, the director of mutual fund operations for Wasatch Advisors and deputy chief of staff to the Mayor of Salt Lake City. He graduated from the University of Utah in 1982 and was named the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year in 2000, a v100 Technology Leader in 2008, Best in State Educational Administrator in 2009 and received the 2014 Governor’s Medal for Excellence in Science and Technology.

     

    troy.dambrosio@utah.edu

    b.mcrae-portrait-april-2022

    Bryan McRae, MD

    Co-Director (Interim)

    Bryan R. McRae, M.D., is a specialist in Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery and serves as the Co-Director (Interim) at the Center for Medical Innovation. Along with the treatment of common conditions in adults and children (tonsillectomy, hearing loss, facial trauma repair, etc.), Dr. McRae has interests and training in a wide range of ear, nose, and throat disorders, including laryngology and vocal lesions, chronic ear disease, thyroid tumors, salivary disease, and sinus surgery. He is one of the Otolaryngology surgeons for the HHT team (Hereditary Hemorrhagic Telangiectasia), a University of Utah referral center for specialized treatment of HHT, a unique genetic disorder. Research experience includes years of full-time NIH-T32 training in laryngeal reinnervation, vocal fold paralysis, artificial tracheas, and related efforts. He also participates enthusiastically in developing innovative new medical and surgical devices, including mentorship of multiple university BioDesign teams with the Bioengineering undergraduate program. Dr. McRae is a member of the American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery (AAO-HNS) and is involved in local and national committees. He speaks Mandarin Chinese fluently and actively participates in humanitarian service, including past surgical trips to Kenya, China, and Indonesia.

    Dr. McRae is a native of Bountiful, Utah, and in his free time, he enjoys many outdoor activities with his wife and family. He also enjoys piano and choral music.

    bryan.mcrae@hsc.utah.edu

    View Dr. McRae's Clinical Bio from University of Utah Healthcare

    Srividya Pothana

    Srividya Pothana

    Regulatory Affairs Associate

    Srividya Pothana works as a Regulatory Affairs Associate here at CMI. She joined the team in 2019 and works on-site at Research Park. In her role, she provides both regulatory and quality support to university/industry medical device start-ups. She has a Dual Regulatory Certificate in Medical Devices and Pharmaceuticals and is a certified ISO 13485 Lead Auditor.

    Prior to joining CMI, Sri worked as a Laboratory Supervisor for 4 years in OTC and Dietary Supplement industry. Her background includes M.S. in Chemistry from Lamar University and Bachelor of Pharmacy.

    In her leisure time, Sri enjoys reading books, playing badminton, board games, puzzles, and likes to go hiking and swimming.

    srividya.pothana@utah.edu

    801.587.1456

    Adam Ruechel - Portrait

    Adam Ruechel

    Program Manager

    Joining the team in 2019, Adam serves as the Bench to Bedside Program manager and oversees marketing and outreach for CMI. 

    Before starting at CMI he spent nearly a decade in Madison, Wisconsin's vibrant start-up and biotechnology ecosystem, including significant time in the new product development industry. He holds two BS degrees from the University of Wisconsin in Life Sciences Communication and Environmental Studies. 

    Outside the office, Adam enjoys cooking, photography, traveling abroad, Utah’s mandatory recreational activities of rock climbing and downhill skiing, and when he isn’t doing any of these, spending time with his friends and family. 

    adam.ruechel@hsc.utah.edu

    801.587.9591

    Jared Smith - Portrait

    Jared Smith

    Senior Engineer

    As the Senior Engineer at Center for Medical Innovation, Jared manages the Gary Crocker Innovation and Design Lab and serves as the lead on prototyping projects for students, faculty and community partners using the lab’s services. He joined the CMI as a Student Lab Fellow in 2018, before earning his B.S. in Chemical Engineering from the University of Utah in 2020.

    In his free time Jared enjoys reading up on the latest in autonomous vehicles and other emerging technologies, playing video games, spending time with his wife and their families, and drinking an unbelievable amount of Dr. Pepper.

    jared.lee.smith@utah.edu

    801.213.3672

    spencer-walker-portrait

    Spencer Walker, MSc

    Director of Regulatory Affairs

    Spencer Walker was educated as a Medical Device Development specialist (MSc) at Cranfield University (England/ UK) and has over 20 years of experience in the medical industry, including 10 years as a Regulatory Affairs and Quality Executive and Consultant/Advisor in the area of Medical Device Regulatory/ Quality Compliance. He joined the University's Center for Medical Innovation in 2015 as the Director of Regulatory Affairs, where he currently teaches and consults for new university/ industry based medical device start-ups.

    spencer.walker@hsc.utah.edu

    801.581.5080

    Abbie Griffin holds the Royal L. Garff Presidential Chair in Marketing at the David Eccles School of Business and is the Associate Dean of Business Innovation for the School of Medicine. She teaches the undergraduate Marketing Strategy Capstone course in the Business School, and is responsible for marshalling all of the business resources necessary to help the University's medical innovators commercialize their inventions, teaching in both the Bench to Bedside and NSF ICorps Prgrams. 

    Research Interests: Investigating means for measuring and improving the processes of innovation, new product development and technology management. 

    Education:

    B.S. Ch.E., Chemical Engineering, Purdue University

    MBA, Business, Harvard Business School

    Ph.D., Management of Technology, MIT

    Dr. Petelenz is a Research Associate Professor with the Biomedical Engineering Dept at the University of Utah. His work focuses on the multidisplinary nature of medical device development, including device design, regulatory compliance, and clinical implementation. He is currently the co-PI for the National Science Foundation's I-Corps program at the University of Utah, and additionally he provides guidance to Bench to Bedside teams. 

    Professor Petelenz teaches the BioDesign, BioInnovate and Regulatory Affairs for BioEngineers courses. 

     

    Research Interests: 

    Medical device design, bioinstrumentation, cardiopulmonary resuscitation, minimally-invasive diagnostic and therapeutic systems, medical sensors, RF and wireless sensors and systems, drug delivery systems, prosthetic devices with neural control, FDA Regulatory Affairs with focus on medical device design control.

     

    Education:

    MS Applied Physics / Microelectronics, Silesian University of Technology 

    PhD Bioengineering, University of Utah

    tomasz.petelenz@utah.edu

    b.mcrae-portrait-april-2022

    Bryan McRae, MD

    Co-Director (Interim)

    Bryan R. McRae, M.D., is a specialist in Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery and serves as the Co-Director (Interim) at the Center for Medical Innovation. Along with the treatment of common conditions in adults and children (tonsillectomy, hearing loss, facial trauma repair, etc.), Dr. McRae has interests and training in a wide range of ear, nose, and throat disorders, including laryngology and vocal lesions, chronic ear disease, thyroid tumors, salivary disease, and sinus surgery. He is one of the Otolaryngology surgeons for the HHT team (Hereditary Hemorrhagic Telangiectasia), a University of Utah referral center for specialized treatment of HHT, a unique genetic disorder. Research experience includes years of full-time NIH-T32 training in laryngeal reinnervation, vocal fold paralysis, artificial tracheas, and related efforts. He also participates enthusiastically in developing innovative new medical and surgical devices, including mentorship of multiple university BioDesign teams with the Bioengineering undergraduate program. Dr. McRae is a member of the American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery (AAO-HNS) and is involved in local and national committees. He speaks Mandarin Chinese fluently and actively participates in humanitarian service, including past surgical trips to Kenya, China, and Indonesia.

    Dr. McRae is a native of Bountiful, Utah, and in his free time, he enjoys many outdoor activities with his wife and family. He also enjoys piano and choral music.

    bryan.mcrae@hsc.utah.edu

    View Dr. McRae's Clinical Bio from University of Utah Healthcare

    Tyson C. Schwab, MD, MS, attended the University of Utah School of Medicine and trained in Family Medicine at Intermountain Healthcare where he served as Chief Resident. He has completed additional graduate education and training in bioengineering at the University of Utah.

    In 2021, Dr. Schwab joined the University of Utah School of Medicine Faculty. His clinical responsibilities at the University of Utah primarily include the Neurobehavioral HOME program, where he serves as Associate Medical Director. He continues to supervise and mentor medical students, PA students and resident physicians at the Madsen, Sugarhouse and Centerville clinics. Dr. Schwab serves as a faculty lead in the Clinical Method Curriculum (CMC) Course. He also serves as a faculty mentor at the Center for Medical Innovation. His bioengineering interests includes non-invasive wearables and biomechanic ergonomics.

    As a health policy enthusiast, Dr. Schwab serves as a delegate to the American Medical Association (AMA) where he advocates for improved medical education and quality health care on a national level. He is the proud recipient of the AMA National Advocacy Scholar Award and the AMA Excellence in Medicine Leadership Award.

    Dr. Schwab's medical interests include primary care, medical education, innovation, technology, rural medicine, underserved medicine, and quality improvement. Dr. Schwab grew up in Bountiful, Utah. He and his wife have three kids. He enjoys international traveling, college football (Go Utes), everything Disney, making sushi, and spending time with his family.

    View Dr. Schwab's Clinical Profile from University of Utah Healthcare

    GARY L. CROCKER

    GARY L. CROCKER

    BOARD CHAIRMAN

    Gary L. Crocker is the Managing Director of Crocker Ventures, LLC, a privately held life science and high technology investment firm.  Since 2004 he has also served as Chairman of Merrimack Pharmaceuticals, a personalized oncology drug development firm.  He has held senior executive or board director level positions in several prominent life science and technology firms, including: Chairman of ARUP Laboratories; director of Interleukin Genetics, and LineaGen Genetics; co-founder and director of Theratech Pharma (acquired by Watson Pharmaceuticals in 1999),  and Vice President of Marketing for the Critical Care Products Division of Abbott Laboratories.  He is currently the Chairman and sole investor in three orthopedic medical device firms, Nexus CMF, LLC, Nexus Spine, LLC and Nexus, TDR Inc (an artificial back disc firm).

    In 1983, Crocker founded Research Medical, and was the Chairman and CEO of this publicly held manufacturer and marketer of specialty open heart surgery catheters until the sale of the firm to Baxter International’s Edwards Laboratories division in 1997 for $236 million, at that time the largest medical device merger in state history.   He has been selected twice as Utah Entrepreneur of the Year by both Ernst and Young and the MountainWest Capital Network.  He earned his MBA and also graduated magna cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in economics from Harvard University.

    Dr. Julie Hansen graduated from the University of Utah with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing Degree. She practiced as a registered nurse for approximately 20 years at St. Mark’s hospital and specialized in women’s health, including high-risk pregnancy, delivery, and neonatal complications.

    Throughout her nursing career, Dr. Hansen has been an advocate for women’s health and healthcare education. In 2007, she began her career in nursing education at Ameritech College of Healthcare and held several positions including Nursing Program Director and Chief Executive Officer. Dr. Hansen was instrumental in gaining the nursing program’s initial accreditation from the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission.

    Recognizing the importance of lifelong learning, Dr. Hansen completed both a Master’s Degree in Nursing and a Doctor of Nursing Practice degree. She has developed several nursing curricula with a focus on holism and she continues to teach and promote holistic nursing concepts in her practice. She is board certified by the American Holistic Nurses Association as an Advanced Holistic Nurse. Dr. Hansen believes wholeheartedly that the focus on health and healing must embrace healing the whole person as its goal. According to Dr. Hansen, “Advancing the concept of holism in healthcare will translate to an empowered workforce that provides person-centered care, embraces wholeness, and enacts a paradigm-shift to a healthier world.”

    Amy Rees Anderson is the Founder and Managing Partner of REES Capital, an Angel Investing Firm.  Amy is also an author and serves as a weekly contributor to Forbes and the Huffington Post.  She is currently serving on 13 Boards.

    Prior to founding REES Capital, Amy was the CEO of MediConnect Global, a company she grew and sold in 2012 for over $377 million.

    After selling MediConnect, she founded the IPOP Foundation, a charity focused on promoting entrepreneurship as a pathway to self-reliance.

    Amy has been the recipient of a number of awards, which include being named CEO of the Year and receiving the prestigious Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award.  She has been featured in The Wall Street Journal, Inc Magazine, Businessweek and many other national publications as a result of her many accomplishments, and in 2015 Amy received an honorary PhD.

    In October 2018, Kelvyn H. Cullimore Jr. was named President and CEO of BioUtah, the state trade association for life sciencecompanies. Prior to his role with BioUtah he was for 25 years the President & CEO of Dynatronics Corporation, a leading manufacturer of physical therapy devices and products with an international reach. Dynatronics is a publicly traded, Cottonwood Heights, Utah based company originally founded by Mr. Cullimore and his father in 1979. He continues to serve as a Director of Dynatronics. From 2003 to 2016, Mr. Cullimore served on the board of directors of the Medical Device Manufacturers Association headquartered in Washington, D.C. He is a past Trustee of the Utah Technology Council an industry association which at the time included life science and high‐tech companies. Mr. Cullimore also serves as a board advisor for ITEC Attractions, an entertainment company with operations in Branson, Mo. In addition to his professional career, Mr. Cullimore was elected the first Mayor of Cottonwood Heights in November, 2004 and served in that capacity until January 2018. As Mayor, Mr. Cullimore was a member of the board of the largest fire agency in Utah, the Unified Fire Authority, serving as the chairman of its finance committee. He also served on numerous other County and State committees. Mayor Cullimore was a recipient of the Best of State Award in 2008 as the Best Elected Official. He graduated cum laude from Brigham Young University in 1980 with a degree in Financial and Estate Planning. Kelvyn and his wife, Laurie Lyn Cullimore, are the parents of five children and have twelve grandchildren.

    Dr. Gregory Critchfield received a Bachelor’s Degree in Microbiology from Brigham Young University in 1976, an MD degree from the University of Utah in 1980, and a master’s degree in Biophysical Sciences at the University of Minnesota in 1985. He served as a reviewer and study section chair for the NIH for 15 years in biomedical computing programs for SBIR, STTR and R01 programs. His research spans a number of areas in laboratory medicine, with recent work in clinical genetics and proteomics. He has served on the medical school faculty of the University of Minnesota, Wayne State University and Duke University. He served as Chief Medical and Science Officer of Quest Diagnostics from 1995-1998. He joined Myriad Genetics, Inc. in 1998, where he was President of its diagnostic subsidiary, Myriad Genetic Laboratories, Inc. until 2010, where he built Myriad Genetic Laboratories, Inc. into one of world’s leading molecular diagnostic companies. He chaired the Governor’s State Advisory Council on Science and Technology for the state of Utah in 2007. He has served and is serving as an independent director in industry association and various life science companies developing breakthrough diagnostic technologies and tests. He currently serves as Chairman and CEO of Sera Prognostics, Inc., a women’s health company focusing on preterm birth diagnostics, where the company has raised more than $85M in venture funding since 2011. He also serves as a Trustee of Bear Lake Watch.

    Jack M. Ferraro retired in 2000 from Neuberger & Berman, LLC, where he spent 21 years as a money manager of individual and institutional accounts.  He became a general partner in 1983, a principal when the firm converted to a limited liability corporation and a shareholder when the firm completed its public offering in October 1999.  Prior to joinging Neuberger, Mr. Ferraro was a portfolio manager at the Banca del Gottardo in Lugano, Switzerland and a securities analyst/institutional salesman with Oppenheimer & Co. in New York and London. Mr. Ferraro received an A.B. from Dartmouth College, where he majored in Spanish, in 1967 and an M.B.A. with distinction from the Johnson School in 1970.  He is a Chartered Financial Analyst, having completed the program in 1977.

    Mr. Ferraro’s other not-for-profit service includes two Park City based organizations: the National Ability Center, where he was the President of the Board and is now a member of the Honorary Board, and the Sundance Institute.  Regarding the latter, he has served on the Institute’s Board of Trustees since 2007 and is currently the Treasurer of the Board and a member of the Audit and Finance Committees.

    Shawn Fojtik is co-founder of Distal Access, Control Medical, CIRCA Scientific, Pinyons, and others with sales, training, and marketing experience at GE Medical, Boston Scientific, and Black & Decker.

    His experience includes devices for cardiology, interventional radiology & oncology, electrophysiology, surgery, enteral feeding, and other procedures and has closed transactions with Boston Scientific, Covidien, Mallinckrodt, Medtronic, Merit Medical, Teleflex, and others.

    Control Medical’s award-winning patented platform is used to remove blood clots during acute myocardial infarction (AMI), peripheral vascular disease, deep vein thrombosis (DVT), and ischemic stroke. Control has one of the largest FDA cleared platforms in the United States and has been used in 10,000+ procedures. 

    Shawn has 50+ combined issued and pending global patents; has been a speaker/ author/contributor/research contributor at Heart Rhythm Society, Cardiovascular Research Technologies, and other conferences; and has a BS from the University of Illinois and a MA from Harvard University.

    Gabrielle Daines Gay is Director of Emerging Markets Strategy and Philanthropy at Kensington Capital Holdings, a single-family office based in Boston, Massachusetts.  Gabrielle received an MBA from INSEAD in Fontainebleau, France and a B.S. in Economics from Utah State University.

    In her role at Kensington Capital, Gabrielle manages initiatives and investments in emerging markets, with emphasis in West Africa.  She acts as COO and chief strategist of Ensign College of Public Health, Kpong, Ghana – working to develop sustainable, innovative, impact-driven solutions to advance healthcare in the region.  Gabrielle also advises Kensington Capital on philanthropic opportunities and manages partnerships. 

    Prior to joining Kensington Capital, Gabrielle worked at Gap Inc., a leading global specialty retailer, located in San Francisco, California.  She was a manager in the Growth, Innovation and Digital (GID) Strategy Division.  In her role, she analyzed retail and digital industry intelligence with a focus on new products, new markets and alternative business models.  Gabrielle was also part of the GID team that conducted detailed due diligence on acquisition candidates and conducted all Gap Inc. acquisitions.

    Dr. Patel is the co-founder and managing director of Aqua Recycling Group (2017) and founder and managing director of Patel Family Investments (2014) and co-founded vSpring Capital ($400 million under management) in 2000 and has been a founding managing director till October 2014.

    He serves on several non-profit boards, and has won numerous awards including; 2013 Willem J Kolff Lifetime Achievement Award, the 2011 Father of the Year, 2010 Utah Youth Village Helping Hand Award, 2006 Utah Technology Council Hall of Fame Inductee, 2006 Ellis Island Medal of Honor, US Small Business Administration’s Business Achiever Award, Scientific and Technology Award (State of Utah), Entrepreneur of the Year Award (Mountain West Venture Group) and Scientific and Technology Development Pioneer of Progress Award to name a few. He is also a charter member of The Indus Entrepreneurs (TiE).

    Steve Peterson is the General Partner and Portfolio Manager of Millrock Capital and Millrock Development, founded in 2001. Millrock is a value investor and developer in long term real estate investments. Prior to co-founding Millrock, Mr. Peterson founded American International Systems (A.I. Systems) a software developer and leading technology systems integrator, and client service centers. He sold the business in 2001 to a public company, RAND Worldwide, www.rand.com, one of the world’s leading providers of professional services and technology to the engineering community.

    Mr. Peterson received a BS in Administrative Systems, Management and Operations from the Jon M. Huntsman School of Business at USU. Mr. Peterson is an Entrepreneurial Founders Board Member at USU School of Business and serves as a Board Member of the Center for Medical Innovation at the University of Utah. In addition, Mr. Peterson is actively investing in new business startups that involve innovative ideas that tackle important business issues.

    Kevin Plumb has more than 30 years experience as s successful entrepreneur. In 2013 Kevin won the Ernst & Young “Entrepreneur of the Year” for the Utah Region. Multiple successful exits in five different industries.. A few of the transactions are listed below to show the diverse nature of the companies.

    Ingram Medical was a wholesale distributor of pharmaceutical supplies to 1,500 independent pharmacies at the time of acquisition in 2007. Transformed the company to a direct to consumer mail order pharmacy that services over 1,000,000 customers and has $700mm in annual revenues.

    Beehive Brick, a 25 year old privately held distribution company, sales were sharply declining for two years pre-acquisition. Post acquisition, sales grew from $2.5m to $17.1m in two years. Market share increased from 5% to 52%. This was done in a flat and declining construction market. Acquired from Kevin by private investors.

    Stephen D. Swindle is a shareholder of the Fabian VanCott Firm and a member of the Firm’s Tax and Estate Planning Group.  His practice consists of estate planning, probate and estate administration, preparation of prenuptial and antenuptial agreements, real estate development, foundations and other non-profit corporations, business transactions, tax planning and general corporate matters.

    Steve has represented many families utilizing strategies for the transfer of family wealth while minimizing the impact of Federal transfer taxes.  He has experience representing for-profit and non-profit organizations with respect to a wide variety of corporate and tax matters.  Steve has assisted clients in resolving serious family disputes and in planning for and assisting the family members of protected or incompetent persons in the management and protection of the assets of protected persons.  Steve is also experienced in matters involving real property development, including residential and commercial development.

    Wm. Dean Wallace, obtained an MD and PhD from the University of Utah, then founded several medical companies that grew and were successfully sold to larger companies. He recently started a new company, Liger Medical LLC. (www.curemedicalglobal.com), which focuses on treating pre‐cancerous lesions of the cervix with the hope to eradicate cervical cancer world-wide.

    He was previously the President, CEO, of Clinical Innovations, Inc., Murray, and Utah Medical Products, Inc., a clinical assistant professor  at the University of Utah, and is listed as inventor on over 20 medical patents related to women’s healthcare medical devices. He is happily married, and the father of four children and 12 wonderful grandchildren.