QCA's 20th Annual  Entrepreneur Boot Camp













Marvin is the founder of the Thrivera, a brand consulting agency in the Cincinnati entrepreneurial ecosystem. He helps entrepreneurs create their brands to help them get funded and into growth stage. Prior to Thrivera, Marvin spent 18 years with Procter & Gamble as a Brand Manager, Sourcing Leader, and Corporate trainer. He’s an active advisor and investor to startups including Frameri, Wyzerr, and many others. Marvin is also a public speaker & leadership trainer who regularly gives talks on branding & marketing for businesses, accelerators, incubators. He gave his first TEDx talk in 2014.

Marvin Abrinica - Thrivera

Tony Shipley is a founder and Chairman of Queen City Angels (QCA) During his business career, Tony has founded or invested in over 40 start-ups or early stage companies.  Tony serves on various Boards of startups and early stage companies, and fulfills the role of mentor and/or Board observer for several other QCA portfolio companies. Tony is a member, Vice Chairman, and incoming Chairman of the National Board of Directors for the Angel Capital Association. He is also a Founding member and a Board member of VentureOhio.

     Tony Shipley               Queen City Angels

Sally spent 36 years with The Dow Chemical Company and GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare. Since retiring she has started her own consulting business, Strategic Product Development, which focuses on the front end of the innovation process. She also mentors start-ups and entrepreneurs through various programs in the Cincinnati area and at Purdue University. Sally has been active in The Product Development & Management Association (PDMA) since 1988 both nationally and at the chapter level.


Sally Kay
Strategic Product Development
           Renee Muraca 
           Brixey & Meyer
     Mark Dawes  
Queen City Angels

Managing Partner of Dawes direct, LLC and Entrepreneur in Residence for  Procter and Gamble. Dawes direct, LLC does innovation coaching - strategic coaching/mentoring of business leaders and teams who need to create new market categories and new business models. Prior to starting his own company, he was one of four founding partners and VP of Operations of Cinmar, LLC (The Frontgate Catalog) which overtime grew by merger and acquisition into Cornerstone Brands, Inc. a $450MM catalog and internet conglomerate - best upscale catalog titles, including: Frontgate, The Territory Ahead, Travelsmith, Garnett Hill, Ballard Designs, and Smith – Noble Windoware.

Chris' practice focuses on mergers and acquisitions, general business (with an emphasis on emerging companies), corporate governance, corporate finance, and franchise and distribution law.

Chris received his Juris Doctor from the University of Cincinnati College of Law in 2005. He graduated Cum Laude from Centre College with a B.A. in History and German in 1999, where he was a member of Phi Beta Kappa. Chris is licensed to practice law in both Ohio and Kentucky.


           Chris Kuhnhein   
           Cors & Bassett
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          Mike Eckert
         NOLA Angels
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DeWitt Cook
Queen City Angels

Mike Eckert has been an angel investor since 1997 and currently is Chairman of the NO/LA Angel Network a group of 115 high net-worth individuals in New Orleans, is Chairman oi the Investment Committee of The Pelican Angel Fund,    is on the Investment Committee of the New Orleans Start-Up Fund, and the Limited Partner Advisory Committee of the Louisiana Venture Capital Funds. He has extensive start up experiences and was a member of the Board of Directors of the national Angel Capital Association (ACA). He served as Vice Chairman of the ACA and Chair of  ACA’s Public Policy and Strategic Planning Committees. Mike is a limited partner in a number of Venture Capital Funds and an active angel investor.

DeWitt is currently a member of QCA and focuses on investing and mentoring in Cincinnati’s start up community. His work with entrepreneurs focuses on hiring key employees, developing sales strategy, across all functions and developing basic presentation skills.  DeWitt has over 37 years of sales management experience in various start up companies across multiple industries including technology, digital imaging and consumer product service companies.  DeWitt started his sales management career with Procter & Gamble.  DeWitt graduated from St. Lawrence University and has an MBA from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management. 

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Thomas Humphrey joined Wood Herron & Evans in 1993. He concentrates his practice on electronic, software and computer technologies, including systems and methodologies for practicing and doing business. Tom is involved in acquisition, licensing and analysis of all types of intellectual property, and litigation relating to intellectual property.


“Businesses need to understand how IP relates to their products, their customers, and their competitors, and use that understanding to optimize their use of IP. That’s why I’m here.”

    Tom Humphrey -    Wood Herron & Evans

Michael Hurley represents businesses on formation, mergers, acquisitions and divestitures, and venture capital arrangements. He provides counsel to venture capital and buyout funds, start-up companies and investors in such funds and companies, as well as assisting clients access the capital markets through angel and venture funding rounds. His counsel covers full spectrum of the business cycle - from start-up through maturation and exit strategies - and a broad range of industries, including chemicals, construction, healthcare, energy and consumer products.

Michael Hurley

Calfee Halter

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Terence Andre, PhD

Chief Scientist at TiER1 Performance

Terence Andre has led and won 45 Phase I and Phase II SBIRs/STTRs in his role as Chief Scientist at TiER1. He is an expert in human-computer interaction (HCI) with over 30 years of experience optimizing human & system performance through the use of systems engineering and human factors design principles. Previously, Dr. Andre was an Associate Professor at the United States Air Force Academy where he taught courses in human factors, system design, training, and psychology. He retired as a Lieutenant Colonel in the Air Force, where he served as the Branch Chief at the Air Force Research Laboratory in Mesa, AZ. Dr. Andre holds a Ph.D. in Industrial and Systems Engineering from Virginia Tech, a M.Ed. in Adult Learning, Training, and Development from Regis University, a M.S. in Industrial Engineering from Cal Poly, and a B.S. in Behavioral Sciences from the Air Force Academy.

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Drew Boyd

University of Cincinnati

Alex Yastrebenetsky


Scott Mindrum

CRaKN Founder/CEO

QCA member

John Lilly

Queen City Angels

Lateral Capital

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Kim Banham in a Principal at Connetic Ventures, and is responsible for finding early stage companies for investment.  Connetic Ventures uses proprietary data and technology as a tool when investing in startups.   Using data removes all bias from the investment process.  At Connetic, 42% of our portfolio companies were founded by Women or Minority founders.  The national average is 6%.   At Connetic we believe gut plus science results in better investments.  If you are a startup looking for funding we would like to invite you to talk to Wendal.  Wendal, is our AI and what we use to analyze and help make investments in companies. You can apply for funding here: https://wendal.io/

Kim Banham

Connetic Ventures

QCA member



Michael Halloran

Queen City Angels

Xavier University

Ella Frye