#155 - Mike de Vere | How Zest AI, a Fintech Breakthrough, is Making Fair Credit Accessible
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by George Khalife
1w ago
As an executive at Zest AI, Mike has made it the company’s mission to leverage AI in consumer credit underwriting to build financial equity and create a better, richer, and fuller life for all. In his 25 years prior experience to Zest AI, Mike focused on amplifying the voice of consumers to governments and businesses through organizations like Nielson, Harris Interactive, and JD Power. His experiences converge to show his capacity to lead organizations in translating data into insights that enable the betterment of consumers’ lives ..read more
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#154 - Victor Pascucci III | Pioneering Venture Capital at the Forefront of Natural Gas Innovation
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by George Khalife
1M ago
Vic is a successful venture capitalist with 19+ years of broad professional experience. Top decile performing track record. Extensive ESG, digital transformation, fintech and Insurtech investing experience. Diverse background with Fortune 130 and early-stage venture companies. Complementary leadership roles in corporate strategy/ transformation and as general counsel. Specialties: Energy/ utilities, natural gas, green molecule innovation, fintech, insurtech and financial services technology. Over $650M in venture capital and M&A transactions. Created and executed corporate development func ..read more
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#153 - Gale Wilkinson | Demystifying Investing, The Path to Inclusive Venture Capital
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by George Khalife
3M ago
Gale Wilkinson is the Managing Partner at VITALIZE, early-stage fund & angel community investing in WorkTech startups. Gale is also revolutionizing angel investing through VITALIZE Angels, the largest inclusive angel group globally. She actively supports emerging talents in the VC sector via The VITALIZE Podcast and contributes to diversity in tech and VC as a board member of Chicago:Blend. A Kauffman Fellow and member of prestigious networks like OnDeck, Recast, and Oper8r, Gale resides between Chicago and Nashville, alongside her husband and two dogs. For more on VITALIZE: https://www.vi ..read more
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#152 - Allison Whalen | Balancing Parenthood and Career, The Journey to Founding Parentaly
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by George Khalife
4M ago
Throughout her entire adult life, Allison has been intensely focused on her career, always ensuring that her current role is not only a stimulating challenge but also a stepping stone towards future growth. In 2017, while pregnant with her first child, Allison nearly resigned from a sales leadership position she was passionate about. This inclination stemmed from the significant disruptions caused by her 3-month maternity leave. It became clear to her that there exists a substantial gap in how companies support working parents before, during, and after parental leave, particularly in ways that ..read more
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#151 - Samir Mirza | The Ups & Downs of Entrepreneurship
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by George Khalife
1y ago
Samir Mirza is the Co-Founder and Executive Director of Fifth Star Funds - a venture philanthropy fund investing in Black tech entrepreneurs at the pre-seed / "Friends & Family" stage in Chicago. He was formerly the Co-Founder and CTO of TapCommerce (acquired by Twitter for $100M).   He began his career in Chicago consulting for Fortune 500 clients while building robust content management applications, APIs, and backend distributed systems. In 2012, he co-founded TapCommerce in New York and created the industry's first mobile ad retargeting solution. As the Chief Technology Officer, h ..read more
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#150 - Dan Zavorotny | leveraging technology to improve global health
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by George Khalife
1y ago
Dan is on a mission to personalize nutrition by leveraging CGM (Continuous Glucose Monitoring) and Machine Learning. In simple terms, Nutrisense helps reduce the risk for type 2 diabetes & heart disease, helping people shed unwanted weight, and advise athletes on how to become the best versions of themselves. Website: https://www.nutrisense.io ..read more
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#149 - Chris Kelly | The Sandler Sales Training Methodology
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by George Khalife
1y ago
Chris Kelly is Owner of the Sandler Training® Center located in Toronto. His firm works with Business Leaders, Sales Leaders, Sellers & Customer Care professionals who are serious about personal and professional success and willing to succeed through ongoing improvement and implementation of growth strategies, structure and skill. Over the last decade, the typical Toronto based organisation that chooses to begin a conversation with Chris has some business success behind it. The leadership is growth minded and they have a belief that how they sell has a significant impact on their growth ..read more
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#148 - Claude Cimeus | Being Authentic & Bringing People Together
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by George Khalife
1y ago
Claude Cimeus is a close personal friend and peer within Chicago's entrepreneurial ecosystem. He's currently Director of Platform at P33 Chicago; a non-profit focused on driving inclusive growth for Chicago’s tech sector. Prior to that, Claude worked as a Product Manager at five startups and founded three of his own right out of high school. On the side, Claude enjoys bringing the startup world closer together by hosting fireside night chats with leaders in different industries as well as hosting in-person tech events via ChiTech IRL.   To connect with Claude: https://www.linkedin.com/in ..read more
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#147 - Swapnil Shinde | exiting 2 startups & building AI for finance teams
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by George Khalife
1y ago
Swapnil is the CEO & Co-founder of Zeni.ai - Bookkeeping, Tax, and CFO Services Platform designed for Startup Founders. Zeni is his 3rd startup. He has built and sold two startups before. His first startup was Dhingana and his second startup was Mezi ..read more
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#146 - Mark Achler | How to Sell Your Startup, Maximize Return and Build Legacy
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by George Khalife
1y ago
Venture Capital investor, CEO, Serial entrepreneur, a faculty member at the Northwestern University Kellogg School of Management, and Co-author of Exit Right. Check out Mark's new book: https://amzn.to/3EGmqPS ..read more
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