Keynote Interviewers


Name: Sarah Lacy

Title: Founder

Company:  PandoDaily

Bio coming soon


The Future of Cryptocurrency and Payments Speakers



Name: P. Bart Stephens

Title: Co-Founder and Managing Partner

Company: Blockchain Capital

Bart Stephens is the Co-Founder and Managing Partner of Blockchain Capital, the first venture capital fund to invest exclusively in the blockchain technology sector and the first to raise a venture fund through an ICO. Blockchain Capital is the pioneer and most established VC firm in the Blockchain sector with 51 portfolio companies across three funds. Bart Stephens is also a Managing Partner and Co-Founder of Stephens Investment Management (SIM), a family owned and operated hedge fund and venture capital firm. Bart and his brother and Co-Founder, Brad, invented the term and pioneered "Nanocap" investing venture capital style investing in the public markets focused on sub micro-cap equities. Bart has a background as both an operating entrepreneur and a venture capitalist. Prior to co-founding SIM, Bart was Executive Vice President, Venture Capital for Ivanhoe Capital Corporation (ICC), an international investment firm. Before joining ICC, Bart was a founding investor and Head of Corporate & Business development for grew to become the internet's largest cancer-related website before being sold to Pharmacia (now Pfizer) in 2001. Prior to, Bart spent more than two years with E*TRADE, an early internet innovator in online financial services. While at E*TRADE, he held senior positions focused on product marketing, business development, and corporate development. Bart earned a B.A. in Political Science from Princeton University.


Name: Ryan Zurrer

Title: Venture Partner

Company: Polychain Capital

Ryan is Principal and Venture Partner at Polychain Capital, leading private investments and helping projects structure their crypto-economic models along with team and community development. Ryan has been an active angel investor in the blockchain ecosystem since 2012, backing both start-ups and token-enabled networks. Prior to joining Polychain Capital, Ryan was CEO of a large Brazilian renewables firm. Ryan has extensive experience building large-scale infrastructure projects and evaluating emerging technologies.


Name: Anders Brownworth

Title: Chief Evangelist


Anders Brownworth is Chief Evangelist at Circle where he champions the Spark smart contract platform. Circle is focused on making global payments fast, free, and secure. Mr. Brownworth teaches blockchain technology at MIT and previously helped create and launch Republic Wireless, a WiFi / cellular hybrid smartphone service.


The Future of FinTech Speakers



Name: Omer Ismail

Title: COO

Company: Marcus

Omer is chief operating officer of Marcus by Goldman Sachs, the firm's digital consumer financial services business. He is a member of the Marcus Credit Policy Committee. Omer joined Marcus by Goldman Sachs at its inception in 2015. Prior to his current role, he was in the Merchant Banking Division (MBD), focused on the division's private equity activities in the financial services and healthcare sectors. Omer first joined Goldman Sachs as an analyst in the Investment Banking Division in 2002, working in the New York and London offices, and was named managing director in 2013 and partner in 2016. Omer earned an AB from Dartmouth College in 2002 and an MBA from Harvard Business School in 2007.



Name: Adam Broun

Title: COO

Company:  Kensho

Adam Broun is the Chief Operating Officer for Kensho. He joined Kensho as a member of the founding management team from Credit Suisse, where he was at first global head of IT Strategy, and later CIO, Front Office covering all three revenue-generating divisions – Investment Banking, Private Banking, and Asset Management. Prior to that, he was a partner with Deloitte Consulting, where he led the US consulting practice for buy-side financial services. Adam holds a B.A.(Hons) in Physics and an MA from Oxford University. He has served as CTO-in-residence for the Partnership Fund for New York City's 2013 Financial Technology Innovation Lab, and was named to Institutional Investor's Trading Technology Top 40 for 2013.


Name: Blair Baldwin

Title: CEO

Company: Quilt

Blair Baldwin is the Cofounder / CEO of Quilt, a family of mobile-first insurance products designed to be bought and used online. Prior to Quilt, Blair was the Chief Marketing Officer of Goji, one of the largest online auto insurance agencies in the country. Blair has held a number of senior roles at venture-backed startups, and started his career at the global digital agency DigitasLBi. Blair is a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Business School.


Name: James Hobson

Title: CEO

Company: Attune Insurance

Speaker bio coming soon


Name: Andre Bliznyuk (Moderator)

Title: Partner

Company: Runa Capital

Speaker bio coming soon


The Future of Food Speakers



Name: Steve Fredette

Title: President & Co-Founder 

Company: Toast

Steve Fredette is President and co-founder of Toast, where he leads product and innovation initiatives. Prior to Toast, he worked on mobile app development before the iPhone came out, creating the first Flickr and apps. At Endeca, now Oracle, he co-founded their mobile commerce business, building the product team and driving sales, marketing, and services to over $10 million in revenue in two years. He also ran the Special Operations team at Endeca, creating new prototypes for various customer and business needs, including Endeca's business intelligence platform. Steve holds a BS degree from MIT.


Name: Julia Cohen

Title: Business Operations

Company: Bowery

Julia is the engine behind Bowery's marketing and sales operations. She started her career in brand management at PepsiCo, and has spent time at venture-backed startups working to improve emergency response technology and home delivery of prescription drugs. Before Bowery, Julia was a consultant at McKinsey & Co, where she focused on capability building and lean transformation of marketing and sales organizations and technology companies.


Name: Jan Schnorr

Title: CEO

Company: C2Sense

Jan Schnorr is Chief Executive Officer of C2Sense. Previously, he was a postdoctoral associate in the Swager laboratory (Department of Chemistry at MIT), and also completed his Ph.D. in chemistry at MIT. During this time, he has worked on functionalized carbon nanotubes and carbon nanotube based chemical sensors. He has published 13 peer-reviewed papers with a total of over 300 citations. He is co-inventor on 6 patents/patent applications including C2Sense's ethylene sensing and rapid prototyping technology.


Name: Jennifer Cheung

Title: Principal, Strategic Project

Company: Amazon

Speaker bio coming soon



Name: Usman Cheema

Title: Senior Manager, Business & Corporate

Company: DoorDash

Speaker bio coming soon


The Future of Space Speakers


Louis Perna.jpg

Name: Louis Perna

Title: Co-Founder and Lead Mechanical Engineer

Company: Accion 

Louis co-founded Accion with the goal of increasing the ease of access to and utilization of space, starting by enabling a growing commercial space industry with Accion's high-performance satellite propulsion technology. His daily work focuses on product design and development, advanced manufacturing, performance testing, and multidisciplinary research. He received his Bachelor's and Master's degrees (SB '09, SM '14) from the MIT Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics where he specialized in space propulsion and helped develop the novel ion electrospray technology Accion implements today. Louis has worked with NASA both academically and professionally, including the investigation of ion engine operating modes; the design, test, and assembly of robotic extraterrestrial exploration systems; and technical and programmatic risk estimation for manned spaceflight systems. Louis was named one of the Forbes 30 Under 30 in 2016 and 2017 and Inc. 30 Under 30 in 2017.

Future of Space_Karl Hoose.png

Name: Karl Hoose

Title: CEO/CTO

Company: VALT Enterprises, LLC

Karl Hoose is the Founder, CEO/CTO of VALT Enterprises, which is developing the VALT launch system, to address the fast-growing launch demand and space access requirements of the emerging nanosatellite industry. Beginning with the National Aerospace Plane Program, Karl has over 30 years of experience with high-speed air-breathing (i.e. ramjet/scramjet) and rocket propulsion, high performance piston and combined cycle engines, and advanced vehicle systems. He was the Founder and President of Applied Thermal Sciences, Inc. (ATS), an award-winning, Maine-based research and development (R&D) engineering firm that earned a national reputation for developing cutting edge technologies, and has successfully transitioned concepts to commercial product. As a small R&D business under Karl's lead, ATS was successful in capturing more than $70 million in revenue in a 15 year period. He has been awarded patents for his innovative technologies, including an innovative internal combustion engine and variable thrust rocket motor. Karl is a licensed professional engineer, and received his B.S. and M.S. degrees in mechanical engineering from the University of Maine. He has and continues to serve on several boards to facilitate the growth of an innovative STEM workforce.


Name: David Potere

Title: Co-Founder/CEO

Company: Telluslab

David is the co-founder and CEO of TellusLabs, a Boston-based software company that combines decades of satellite imagery with a machine learning platform to answer critical, time-sensitive economic and environmental questions. David co-founded Boston Consulting Group's global data science practice. At TellusLabs, David is combining his love of satellite remote sensing with nearly a decade of practical experience addressing the geospatial and data-driven questions of the Fortune 500. Prior to BCG, David served as a Surface Warfare Officer in the US Navy. He received an AB from Harvard College, an MA in satellite remote sensing from Boston University, and a PhD in geo-demography from Princeton.


Name: Dan Nevius

Title: Co-Founder/COO

Company: Analytical Space

Speaker bio coming soon

Matthew Weinzierl image.jpg

Name: Matthew Weinzierl (Moderator)

Title: Professor

Company: Harvard Business School

Matt Weinzierl is a Professor in the Business, Government, and the International Economy Unit at Harvard Business School. Prior to his doctoral studies, Professor Weinzierl worked in the New York office of McKinsey & Company, specializing in financial services. From 2003 to 2004, he served as the Staff Economist for Macroeconomics on the President's Council of Economic Advisers.

Professor Weinzierl has written on a range of topics in optimal taxation and optimal economic policy more generally. His most recent projects, associated with the idea of Positive Optimal Tax Theory, focus on identifying and formalizing the goals for tax policy that hold sway among the public, political, and economic leaders, and leading tax thinkers, and then characterizing the implications of using those objectives in the analysis of optimal taxation. Professor Weinzierl is also the creator of an elective course at HBS entitled "The Role of Government in Market Economies." He has recently launched a new set of research projects focused on the commercialization of the space sector and its implications for the provision of space-related public goods.


The Future of Retail Speakers



Name: Chieh Huang

Title: Co-Founder/CEO


Chieh Huang is Co-Founder and CEO of Boxed, a company that is disrupting the wholesale shopping club experience by enabling you to shop for bulk-sized items online or via mobile app and have them delivered directly to your door. Founded by Huang and three others in 2013, Forbes Magazine recently named Boxed one of the next "billion dollar startups." The company currently delivers anywhere in the Continental US, offers free two-day shipping on most orders, has raised over $150 million in funding, and is known for its creative employee perks. In 2015, Huang, the son of Taiwanese immigrants, announced he would be personally paying for the college tuition of all of his employees' children. Prior to founding Boxed, Huang served as the CEO of Astro Ape, which was subsequently acquired by Zynga. Huang's personal honors include being named to Goldman Sachs' list of 100 Most Intriguing Entrepreneurs (2016), to National Retail Federation's list of People Shaping Retails Future (2017), and as one of Crain's 40 Under 40 (2017). Huang is a 2003 graduate of The Johns Hopkins University and received his JD from Fordham University in 2007.


Name: Pano Anthos (Moderator)

Title: Founder/Managing Director

Company: XRC Labs

Pano leads XRC Labs as its Founder and Managing Director. Having founded 4 startups around key platform shifts, he saw the seismic shift coming to retail and with the right vision and timing recruited Parsons School of Design and Kurt Salmon to be founding sponsors. Now with 18 accelerated startups, 10 active world-class retail sponsors, 60+ business mentors, Pano has built a world-class ecosystem for retail and consumer goods innovation at XRC Labs. He speaks regularly at NRF national and regional meetings, Shoptalk and RILA executive conferences. He leverages a deep startup network in Silicon Valley, New York, and Boston to fuse leading technology, E-commerce, and user experience innovations to existing customer-oriented businesses.


The Future of AR/VR Speakers



Name: Victor Luo

Title:  Operations Lab Lead

Company: NASA JPL

Working with other NASA centers and industry partners, Victor is exploring new immersive visualization technologies for use in Mars operations, ISS astronaut crew augmentation, and spacecraft design. Mr. Luo is also engaged in the development of natural user interface technologies for commanding robot navigation and dexterous manipulation. Past experiences include planning & commanding of Mars spacecraft, operations of fractionated spacecraft, and 3D visualization of Mars terrain and rover telemetry.


Name: John Werner

Title: Vice President

Company: Meta

John Werner is the Vice President of Strategic Partnerships at Meta, a technology company that is designing a future where augmented reality becomes a healthy, vital extension of who we are and creates deeper understanding, freer expression, and optimal productivity. John combines innovative thinking and collaborative, creative solutions to deliver human and environmental impact. John was most recently at the MIT Media Lab as Head of Innovation and New Ventures at the Camera Culture Group and Founding Managing Director of Emerging Worlds SIG. At MIT, Werner supported developments on new imaging platforms, including hardware and software technologies, to augment human vision.


The Future of Healthcare Speakers



Name: Umair Khan

Title:  VP of Product

Company: Accolade

Speaker bio coming soon


Name: Gina Nebesar

Title:  Co-Founder/CPO

Company: Ovia Health