Jonathan Kabakoff

Senior Principal

 Alexandria Venture Investments

Jonathan Kabakoff is a Senior Principal – Science and Technology at Alexandria Real Estate Equities, Inc. and its strategic venture capital arm, Alexandria Venture Investments. In his role, Mr. Kabakoff is responsible for strategic venture capital investments, business development, and tenant underwriting in Alexandria’s San Diego and Seattle cluster locations. While at Alexandria, he has led venture capital investments in more than 40 life science companies primarily in the areas of therapeutics, diagnostics, and life science research tools. Mr. Kabakoff currently serves as an Observer on the Boards of Metacrine, Forge Therapeutics, and Singular Genomics Systems. He is on the board of SparkBio, an invitation-only networking group that brings together up-and-coming life science professionals in San Diego, and is a member of the Biocom Capital Development Committee. Mr. Kabakoff received an honorable mention in the first annual Biocom Life Science Catalyst Awards in 2016. Prior to joining Alexandria, he held research positions at Gen-Probe, Genoptix, and the Burnham Institute for Medical Research. Mr. Kabakoff holds a BS in Chemistry from Stanford University.

sdvg san diego venture group board member kim kamdar

Kim Kamdar


Domain Associates

Dr. Kamdar is a Partner at Domain Associates, a life sciences venture capital firm, which she joined in 2005.

Kim is currently Chairman of the Board of Directors of Obalon (NASDAQ: OBLN). She also serves on the board of directors of several private companies including Epic Sciences, Omniome, ROX Medical, Sera Prognostics and Singular Genomics. Kim is also a founder and CEO of Truvian Sciences, a consumer focused health and wellness company. Past investments include Ariosa (acquired by Roche), Corthera (acquired by Novartis), BiPar Sciences (acquired by sanofi-aventis) and Achaogen (Nasdaq: AKAO).

Formerly Kim was a Kauffman Fellow with MPM Capital. Prior to joining MPM, she was a research director at Novartis, where she built and led a research team that focused on the biology, genetics and genomics of model organisms. Kim is the author of ten papers as well as the inventor on seven patents. She received her B.A. from Northwestern University and her Ph.D. in biochemistry and genetics from Emory University. Kim serves as an advisory board member of Dr. Eric Topol’s NIH supported Clinical and Translational Science Award for Scripps Medicine and is also on the non-profit board for Access Youth Academy, an organization that is transforming the lives of underserved youth through academic enrichment, health and wellness, social responsibility and leadership through squash.


Afif Khoury

Founder & CEO

 SOCi, Inc.

SOCI is developing the new standard in social media management. With its comprehensive enterprise tools platform, proprietary Content Recommendation Engine and Instant Insight scoring algorithms, SOCI is helping businesses and digital marketing firms achieve success in social media. Complete with a calendaring system, design center, conversation tracker, reporting capabilities and the content and insights that drive it all, the SOCI platform enables a highly efficiency, yet highly effective Do-It-Yourself and Do-It-For-Them solution. Look out Hootsuite… we’re growing up fast.


Cheston Larson


 Latham & Watkins

Cheston Larson serves as Chair of Latham’s San Diego Corporate Department and Emerging Companies Practice, and is Co-chair of the firm’s Life Sciences Industry Group. Cheston’s practice covers a broad range of general corporate matters, including counseling public and privately-held companies as well as representing venture capital and investment banking firms in private and public financing transactions.

Cheston advises clients on the formation of new businesses and their capital raising transactions, spanning the spectrum from angel and venture financings to IPOs, follow-on offerings, PIPEs and debt financing. He also regularly represents clients in mergers and acquisitions, corporate partnering transactions, licenses and strategic alliances. Cheston’s expertise also includes SEC disclosure and reporting requirements, Nasdaq and NYSE compliance and management compensation and equity incentive matters.

Cheston routinely counsels clients in the life sciences, software, telecommunications, cleantech and other technology industries.


Craig Lee

CEO & Biz Dev Manager


Seasoned executive with track record of delivering innovative products and solutions into technically demanding markets. Strong communications and leadership skills for developing adaptable, high performance teams. Proven ability to initiate sales, drive product marketing, and develop channels. Clear understanding of board and investor motivations and needs. Core business approach: use data-driven decision-making to execute disruptive, first-mover attack against incumbents and into new markets.


Quinn Li

Vice President & Managing Director

 Qualcomm Ventures

Quinn oversees Qualcomm’s $1 billion strategic venture investment portfolio of over 140 investments. He currently serves as a board member or observer in AMEC, Brain Corp, Cohesity, Lytro, OneWeb, RetailNext, Tango, and Verve. Previously Quinn has led investments in A123 Systems (AONE), Consert (acquired by Landis+Gyr), InvenSense (INVN), Placemeter (acquired by Netgear), PowerCloud Systems (acquired by Comcast), and Siimpel (acquired by Tessera).


Jay Lichter

Managing Director

Avalon Ventures

Jay Lichter is an entrepreneur and seasoned investor in the biotechnology and pharmaceutical arena with over 25 years of expertise in management, scientific research, and business development. He currently serves as president and CEO of COI Pharmaceuticals.

As managing director of Avalon Ventures, Dr. Lichter led investments in Carolus, Otonomy, Sova and Zacharon Pharmaceuticals. Dr. Lichter has served as CEO of many these companies, which has included leading both their business and scientific operations during the companies’ formative periods. He is on the board of directors for most of these companies and also served as Chairman of the Board of RQx, another Avalon company. He led the first life science investments for the Avalon IX portfolio, Sova Pharmaceuticals, and serves as its CEO and board member. He also led the investment in Aratana Therapeutics, where he serves as chairman of the board. Dr. Lichter took over the leadership of Avelas in order to turn that company around after a change in management and serves as a director on the board. Dr. Lichter is the inventor on over 260 patent and patent applications for six Avalon portfolio companies, including 78 issued patents. Dr. Lichter has been involved in licensing or merger and acquisition deals valued in excess of $1 billion.

In addition to his Avalon activities, Dr. Lichter serves as a director on the board of the John Wayne Cancer Institute and a trustee and Chairman to Pacific Ridge School located in Carlsbad.

Dr. Lichter held postdoctoral positions in Human Genetics at Yale University and pharmacogenetics at DuPont Merck Pharmaceutical Co. Dr. Lichter obtained his Ph.D. in biochemistry from the University of Illinois at Chicago, and a B.S. from the Univ. of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign


Allison Long Pettine

Founder & President

 Crescent Ridge Partners

Allison Long Pettine is an investor and entrepreneur who is passionate about finding and empowering visionaries uniquely destined to change the world. She recently founded Ad Astra Ventures, a fund dedicated to empowering founders of high growth startups with at least one female co-founder. She is President of Crescent Ridge Partners, Founding Partner at SEED San Diego, and co-founder of Lymber, which was sold to MindBody in 2017.

Allison began her career at Viscogliosi Brothers, a New-York based venture capital company focused on cutting-edge orthopedic medical device technologies. She was an early employee and Director of Corporate Finance and Strategic Planning at Paradigm Spine, a startup that developed non-fusion spinal implants to treat degenerative and deformity spinal disorders. Allison is a mentor at Tech Stars, sits on the advisory board of UCSD’s The Basement incubator, sits on the board of the San Diego Venture Group and is a committee member at San Diego’s Evo Nexus incubator.


Tim McIntire

Vice President


McIntire co-founded StackIQ, which was acquired by Teradata in July 2017.  He is currently Vice President of Shared Services at Teradata. He served in multiple roles at StackIQ, including CEO and Chairman of the Board where he raised $10-million in venture capital and grew the company from zero to 7-figure revenue.  StackIQ brought the cluster computing sector’s thriving open source community into the enterprise with the development of Stacki — a comprehensive software suite which automates the deployment and management of compute, storage, and network infrastructure.  McIntire’s previous work includes the North American launch of Scalable Systems (an Asia-Pac startup) and leading the development team at the Digital Image Analysis Lab at Scripps Institution of Oceanography. His research at Scripps, which was primarily funded as part of NASA’s Direct Broadcast program, has been published in various IEEE and Elsevier Journals on topics ranging from remote sensing using neural networks to parallel data processing using large scale clusters.

meissner kevin

Kevin Meissner

Tenant Representation

 Cushman & Wakefield

Kevin exclusively represents Tenants and Owner-Users of commercial real estate. He specializes in the representation of North American based companies, both private and public. In order to achieve clients’ goals, Kevin implements a client-centered approach in order to develop, plan, and execute real estate solutions.


Derrick Oien



Seasoned technology executive in the wireless, online media and traditional media space.

Most of my focus is on user generated content and how this form of content creation and distribution is the most important trend in media in the coming years.

Specialties:User Generated Content, Content Licensing, Intellectual Property Rights, Wireless, Digital Media, Communities, Social Software


Eric Otterson

Managing Director

 Silicon Valley Bank

A serial entrepreneur, through three VC backed technology companies. The largest, eAssist raised over $60M from top-tier VCs to support international expansion of an enterprise CRM solution, and sold to Talisma in 2006. The company spawned successes like assistly (Alex Bard and Gary Benitt) which sold in 2011 to

I work closely with high tech and emerging growth companies, reviewing business plans and market strategies, and facilitating the connections between fast-growing companies and the financial, legal and strategic resources that fuel their growth.

Through SVB, I have close relationships with angel investors, venture capitalists, and private equity firms (many of whom are clients), as well as industry leaders, enabling me to facilitate match-making relationships for growth.

todd poling

Todd Poling


 Vantage Point Advisors & Savitch LLP

Todd Poling is the Founder and President of Vantage Point Advisors, Inc. Mr. Poling is actively involved in valuation engagements of all types and also leads the firm’s strategic planning and business development efforts.

Prior to founding Vantage Point, Mr. Poling was Managing Director of CBIZ Valuation Group, Inc., spending several years with the firm in the Dallas, San Diego, and Los Angeles offices. While at CBIZ, Mr. Poling managed large and complex valuation consulting engagements focusing heavily in the transaction arena. He participated in numerous engagements involving corporate re-structuring, initial public offerings, mergers and acquisitions, ESOPs and fairness opinions. In addition, he provided valuation consulting in litigation support situations and served as an expert witness in both deposition and trial settings.

Before joining CBIZ, Mr. Poling was the first employee and General Manager of the Antique Drapery Rod Company, Inc. a start-up manufacturer of drapery hardware and other fabricated furniture products based in Dallas, Texas where he was responsible for the company’s operational and financial activities. Today ADR, Inc. is an internationally recognized brand within its industry with over 150 employees, many of whom joined the company in its early years. Mr. Poling began his career with Arthur Andersen & Co. where he worked in the firm’s audit and business consulting practices.

sdvg san diego venture group board member wendy rogers

Wendy Rogers




Christian Salaman

Partner/Corporate Attorney

 Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman

Christian Salaman is an attorney in the Corporate & Securities practice group at Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP. His practice focuses on the buying, selling and financing of businesses, as well as governance issues, operational matters and strategic relationships.


Killu Sanborn

Director of Business Development

 Oxford Finance Corporation

Life sciences specialty finance professional, venture capital investor, business development and operations executive, scientist, banker and consultant.

Expertise: Life science venture debt and equity financings, life science startup formation, strategy, business development and M&A, startup operations, and financing. Venture fund investment strategy, deal analysis, investment exit strategy identification and execution. Board roles for private companies.

Specialties:Startup formation, exit strategy identification and exit execution, and company financing, with direct experience in venture capital investing (VC equity and venture debt). Life Science business development, M&A and technology commercialization. Board representation. Ph.D. in Molecular Biology.


Peter Shaw

Managing Director

 Shaw Management Advisors

Peter Shaw is a Principal in Shaw Management Advisors, Int’l LLC, (SMAI) a San Diego based international advisory firm that provides services for Senior Management, Boards, Venture Capitalists and Entrepreneurs. SMAI specialize in advising its clients in strategic and operational aspects of their business. A number of assignments have included M&A, as well as Corporate restructuring.

Mr. Shaw continues to be active as a business advisor and has recently successfully completed small business M&A assignments. He currently serves on both US based and International Company Boards of Directors


Sureel Sheth

Vice President

 JMI Equity

Software and health care technology investor at JMI Equity, a growth-focused private equity firm with more than $3B of committed capital.

Sureel has been part of the JMI team since 2010 and focuses on the healthcare IT sector. He is responsible for sourcing and evaluating investment opportunities as well as providing strategic and operational support to portfolio companies. Prior to joining JMI, Sureel was a business analyst at McKinsey & Company. He also worked in sales operations and business development for DoubleDutch, a mobile software company focused on the events space.


Randy Socol


 DLA Piper

Randy Socol is focusing his practice on the corporate representation of established and emerging growth companies in the technology, biotechnology, media/entertainment, consumer product, clean technology and medical device sectors and the venture capital firms, corporate and strategic investors and acquirors that finance and/or acquire these companies.

In addition to providing strategic and corporate counseling, his practice encompasses venture capital financings, mergers and acquisitions, debt financings, public offerings, equity and compensation matters and corporate governance.

Randy currently splits his time between DLA Piper’s San Diego and Los Angeles offices and is the Co-Chair of the firm’s US Emerging Growth and Venture Capital practice, as well as a founding member of the firm’s Corporate Venture Leadership Group.


Drew Spaventa

Managing Partner

Axon Ventures


Stuart Starr


 Mayer Hoffman McCann P.C.

I am a Shareholder of Mayer Hoffman McCann P.C. I have been with the Firm since 1999 and have been in public accounting since 1992.

My technical expertise is in providing audit and consulting services to technology and life science companies, both publicly traded and privately held, including many backed by venture capital. I have served as the audit partner on initial public offerings, as well as on innumerable other registration statement filings and 34 act filings. I am also our office’s Attest Practice Leader.

I assist my clients with revenue recognition, purchase accounting, accounting for stock-based compensation, equity and debt instruments, derivatives accounting, and general business consulting enabling clients to make informed decisions on financial reporting matters.


Bruce Steel

President & Chief Business Officer


Bruce is the President, co-founder, and Chief Business Officer of Equillium as well as the founder and Managing Director of BioMed Ventures. He maintains extensive relationships with world-class institutional investors, entrepreneurs, and executives developed over eighteen years of investing and operating in the biotech sector. Bruce was co-founder and CEO of Rincon Pharmaceuticals from 2004 until its acquisition in 2008; previously he was Chief Business Officer at Anaphore and Head of Corporate Development at Ambit Biosciences. He also served as Vice President in the Venture division of Imperial Bank. Bruce served as or is a Board Observer or Member at: Aegea, Amplyx, Anaptys, Auspex, Breathe, CardioFocus, Celula, Compass, Edge, Genalyte, Histogenics, Laguna, NanoString, NeuroVia, OptiScan, Pathwork, Promedior, Receptos, Suneva, Tracon, and Zosano. Bruce received his Bachelor of Arts degree from Dartmouth College and Masters of Business Administration degree from the Marshall School of Business at the University of Southern California, and he holds the designation of Chartered Financial Analyst.


Lori Steele

Founder & CEO

 Everyone Counts

Lori Steele Contorer is the world’s top expert in election modernization, pioneering the adoption of software as a service and bringing proven state of the art technologies, already proven in other mission–critical industries, to make elections more accessible, affordable, transparent and secure. The transformation has begun, and her visionary leadership in business, innovation and elections led to Ms. Steele Contorer being named in 2013 to Fortune Magazine’s 10 Most Powerful Women Entrepreneurs List, a winner of San Diego Business Journal’s Women Who Mean Business Award and her induction into the Bowling Green State University Dallas Hamilton Entrepreneur’s Hall of Fame. Since founding Everyone Counts she has led successful election administration and voting projects in countries including the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Bosnia & Herzegovina, and Australia, serving voters located in over 165 countries, as well as for the transition from vote by mail to secure online voting for the iconic Oscar and Emmy awards. Ms. Steele Contorer previously served as Vice President, Investments at Citigroup, specializing in searching out the most game-changing emerging and state-of-the-art technologies globally, and the companies that would lead industry transformation of those innovative technologies best. Steele Contorer’s election modernization expertise and insights is frequently called on by legislators from around the world, and the media, including Time, the Wall Street Journal, CNN, Fox, MSNBC, Politico and The New York Times.


Andy Summers

Director, Corporate Development


Corporate Development, Illumina
February 2011 – Present (5 years 6 months)Greater San Diego Area

Senior Associate, Enterprise Partners Venture Capital
May 2006 – August 2010 (4 years 4 months)


David Titus

Senior Vice President

 Cooley LLP

Bringing 25 years of venture experience to a new opportunity with the great team and my good friends at Cooley!

Experienced entrepreneur, manager, investor, board member and civic leader. As an entrepreneur and manager have built start-up financial services companies and re-energized mature non-profit organizations. Have been a board member for 25 companies, including 2 public companies. Currently Chairman of one private company, director of one private company and board advisor to two others.


Court Turner

Venture Partner

Court R. Turner, J.D. is President, CEO and Director of Carolus Therapeutics, COO and Director of Afraxis, and Director of Zacharon Pharmaceuticals, each Avalon VIII portfolio companies. Additionally, Court led Avalon’s investment in RQx Pharmaceuticals as its founding CEO and Chairman; is COO and Director of Sova Pharmaceuticals; and a Board Observer of Cardeas Pharma, each Avalon IX portfolio companies.


Mark Wicker


 Perkins Coie

Mark Wicker, a partner in the Technology Transactions & Privacy practice, advises clients in all aspects of acquiring, developing, commercializing and licensing new technologies and products. He has significant experience structuring strategic alliances, collaborations, joint ventures, licenses, and research, development, manufacturing and distribution relationships, often using novel approaches and pioneering methods that further his clients’ business objectives. His clients range from startups to well-established firms in the life sciences, technology, wireless, social media, clean technology, chemical and material sciences industries.

During his many years of practice, Mark has built a reputation for developing sophisticated business models and formulating business-centric legal solutions to the complex challenges biotechnology and life sciences companies face as they bring novel therapeutics and diagnostics to market. He also works in tandem with colleagues in the area of intellectual property and patent litigation to develop adversarial licensing programs and to negotiate settlement and key licensing agreements. Additionally, Mark has significant corporate experience in such areas as venture capital financing, public securities offerings, and mergers and acquisitions.

Mark regularly speaks and offers commentary on life sciences and technology issues, including startup capital raising and formation and licensing transactions.


Ben Williams

Tax Partner



Tyler Wilson

Team Lead

 Wells Fargo Bank

Wells Fargo’s Technology, Media, and Telecom (TMT) Group provides innovative financial solutions, a robust suite of banking products and services, and industry expertise to companies across their growth stages – from startups, to middle-market movers, to large corporates. To help our customers succeed globally our industry aligned relationship teams located across the U.S., Canada, Asia, and the UK, support companies in the following specializations: Technology, Business & Transaction Services, Media, Telecom, Fintech, and Clean Tech.


Doug Winter

CEO & Managing Partner