Brian Whitney | President
Brian Whitney is President of the Maine Technology Institute, a publicly financed, private, nonprofit organization established to stimulate research and development activity leading to the commercialization of new products, processes and services in the state’s seven targeted technology sectors.
He has extensive experience in economic development and legislative matters at both the state and federal level and has worked with innumerable companies, private and public sector research organizations, and entrepreneurial leaders throughout the State of Maine during his professional career. He served previously as a private sector manager and in the public sector as Maine’s Director of Business Development & Innovation, the Director of Outreach and Economic Development for U.S. Senator Olympia J. Snowe (R-Maine), a Business Development Specialist for the State of Maine, and as Chief of Staff to Maine’s Senate President.
He has served on, or staffed, a number of statewide boards including the Maine State Workforce Investment Board, the Maine Economic Growth Council, Maine Innovation Economy Advisory Board, and the Maine Rural Development Authority. He is currently a board member of the Maine Venture Fund and the Economic Development Council of Maine.
Brian is a graduate of the University of Southern Maine (USM) and lives in Augusta with his wife and two daughters.
Shane Beckim | Investment Officer
As a Business Ventures Group Portfolio Manager, Shane oversees multiple early stage funding components including the TechStart Grant, Seed Grant and SBIR/STTR related programs. Shane has been with MTI since 2004 in various capacities. His focus is to work with potential applicants who are in search of funding to help add valuable resources needed to conduct market research, develop business plans, and to conduct early stage research and development of new and innovative technologies.
Since taking over the administration of the Seed Grant Program in 2009, through the creation and administration of both the TechStart Grant and Business Accelerator Grant in 2011 and 2012 respectively, Shane has assisted hundreds of entrepreneurs and companies in various stages of development to formulate strategies and concentrate on efforts that both fit the need of the company and fit to the programs that MTI offers. He conducts regularly scheduled Webinars and you can see him around the state participating in MTI and partner sponsored workshops to help connect Maine’s growing entrepreneurial community to the resources and funding they need to succeed and grow.
Martha Bentley | Director of Innovation Infrastructure
Martha Bentley has worked with the Maine Technology Institute in a variety of capacities since 2002 including managing the Cluster Initiative Program and the Maine Technology Asset Fund Program, as well as well as Maine Accelerates Growth. Martha joined the MTI staff in 2016 as Director of Innovation Infrastructure, coordinating MTI’s funding programs and partnerships that support the innovation and entrepreneurial environment in Maine.
In addition to her work with MTI, Martha manages the Big White Barn, LLC.
Martha has a bachelor of arts in history from Davidson College and a master of arts in applied history from the University of South Carolina. She has held a variety of positions relating to non-profit management and philanthropy, including grants manager for the Public Welfare Foundation in Washington, DC, and director of programs at the Greater Cedar Rapids Community Foundation in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. She lives in a big white barn in Readfield, Maine with her two daughters and a variety of pets.
Scott Bursey | Director of Investment Operations
Scott joined MTI in February of 2015, and is responsible for working with MTI portfolio companies with Development Loans. Scott has over 21 years of high risk lending experience, and has spent 17 years in commercial lending and economic development. He has an MBA from New Hampshire College and a BS in Business Administration from the University of Maine at Machias. Scott lives with his wife and children in the Brunswick area.
Emily Ernst Cordray | Director of Finance and Administration
Emily began working with MTI in January 2015, overseeing the financial, accounting, HR, and general administrative functions. A native of Wyoming, Emily earned a B.A. in Accounting from the University of Wyoming. She began her career as a staff accountant with Ernst & Young in Denver, Colorado. A former C.P.A. certified in 1992, Emily worked with a number of nonprofit organizations during her time in public accounting.
After relocating to Maine in 2001, Emily held board positions with a number of local nonprofit groups including the Maine Academy of Modern Music, the Wescustago Youth Chorale, and the Maine School Administrative District 51 Parent Teacher Organization.
Prior to joining the MTI team, Emily served as the Finance Director at Biodiversity Research Institute in Portland; the Principal Financial Officer of the Portland, Maine Police Department; and the Communications and Volunteer Coordinator for MSAD 51. She lives in North Yarmouth with her family and two large, loveable dogs.
Kim Doughty | Lending and Grant Associate
Kim joined MTI in October 2016, and is responsible for working with potential applicants in search of funding and assisting them with the TechStart Grant, Seed Grant and SBIR/STTR application process. She is committed to connecting entrepreneurs with the resources necessary to develop and grow their business. Her background includes over twenty years of experience in various capacities within commercial lending and credit administration in community banking and economic development.
A native of Maine, Kim comes from a family of small business owners. She earned an undergraduate degree in Business Administration from Southern New Hampshire University and serves on various nonprofit boards and committees.
April Finkenhoefer | Lending and Grant Associate
April joined MTI as Office Manager in July of 2014 and was promoted to Lending and Grant Associate in October, 2016. She had worked in similar capacities for the University of Western Ontario and the University of New Mexico prior to moving to Maine in 2012.
April earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Business from the University of Phoenix in 2004. She resides in Brunswick with her husband and two children.
Sandra Marquis | Administrative Assistant
Sandra joined MTI as the administrative assistant in November, 2016. Her prior work experience includes 30 years working as a legal assistant in various areas of law.
Sandra is a Maine native and graduated from Mt. Ararat High School. After spending time living in other Maine towns and in Florida, she now resides in her hometown of Harpswell with her husband.
Joseph Migliaccio | Director of Business Development
Joe is MTI’s Director of Business Development. Joe leads MTI’s targeted effort to expand MTI’s funding opportunities for technology development with early and late-stage ventures. Joe has been with MTI since 2000 and served as the Director of the Business Ventures Group. He is well-connected in Maine’s entrepreneurial community, and serves on the Blackstone Accelerates Growth leadership team.
Joe has been involved with small business throughout his life, including ownership in specialty foods and retail service. He has formal and practical training in immunology, bioassays, product development and business leadership. During 10 years at IDEXX Laboratories in Westbrook, Maine, he worked as an assay development project leader in R&D, a supervisor of global technical support and managed a multi-million dollar line of tests and equipment. He has had primary responsibility for product-line strategy, product launch, customer satisfaction and achievement of revenue goals.
Joe initially studied engineering at the University of Maine and graduated with an undergraduate degree in Biology from the University of Southern Maine. He holds an MBA from Southern New Hampshire University in Manchester, NH and serves on various business boards and committees.
Lou Simms | Investment Officer
Lou joined MTI in 2015 after finishing his Master’s Program in Resource Administration and Management from the University of New Hampshire, where he focused on research and analysis at UNH’s Sustainability Institute and Organic Dairy Research Farm. Lou has extensive experience working with small businesses as an early employee at for-profits and non-profits in Portland, ranging from rocking bowling alleys to financial literacy counseling. Lou earned his B.S. from the University of Southern Maine in International Studies, with a focus on Economics.
Patti Sutter | Web Communications Manager
Patti joined MTI as the administration assistant for the Maine Technology Asset Fund and other bond funds in February 2008. She had worked in similar capacities for the Maine Nutrition Network, Muskie School of Public Service (USM) and the University of Maine at Augusta.
Patti earned an associate of arts degree in liberal studies from the University of Maine at Augusta and is currently enrolled in its baccalaureate program for liberal studies. She resides in West Gardiner with her family and their wonder dog, Rudy.
Entrepreneurs in Residence
Roger Brooks (2014 - Present)
Roger currently serves part-time as an Entrepreneur in Residence at the Maine Technology Institute. As EIR he mentors, coaches and connects early stage MTI funded technology entrepreneurs and helps them prepare for their next stage of funding. In addition, Roger is Chairman, Treasurer and Co-founder of Abierto Networks, an early stage Maine company in the digital media and marketing area that earned a place on the Inc. Magazine 5000 list of fastest growing private companies for 2012 to 2014.
Before his association with MTI, Roger spent more than 30 years with a variety of technology and manufacturing companies, including serving as CEO and Board member of Intelligent Controls, Saco, Maine; President and Board member of Dynisco, Inc., Sharon, MA; and, Chief Operating Officer and Board member of Thermo Electric, a family owned business in Saddle Brook, New Jersey. He currently serves as a Director of Lytron, Incorporated of Woburn, MA and was previously the Lead Independent Director at Moldflow (NASDAQ) until it was sold to Autodesk.
Roger is a member of the Maine Angels investment network and was an Executive in Residence with Ampersand Ventures, a private equity firm with $300 million under management. He has experience in fund raising, investing and mergers, acquisitions and divestitures.
Roger holds an undergraduate degree in economics and government from the University of Connecticut and a MBA from the New York University Stern School of Business. He’s also a graduate of the American Electronics Association Executive Development program at Stanford University and a US Army veteran.
Kerem Durdag (2016 - present)
Kerem is an executive leader of people and companies bringing out the best of their talents and aspirations, and has over 20 years of experience directing world-class teams in the manufacturing and technology sectors delivering exceptional value to all stakeholders. Kerem was recently CEO of Biovation II LLC, a mid-stage medical device and advanced materials start-up company, whose assets were acquired by a global Chinese manufacturing company. Previously, he was the CEO of BiODE, a sensors company and eventually led the company to an acquisition event by Dover Corporation. He was the past CTO for STEAG HamaTech, Inc., and Engineering Manager at Conceptronic; both public companies and world leaders in their respective markets.
He is on the Board of Directors for several private companies and non-profit organizations, is a member of the Maine Angels investor community, involved in the business community of Maine and is mentor to many entrepreneurs. He is also a published poet and essayist (www.ireakt.com).
He received his Bachelor of Science from St. John’s University (MN) and a Master in Mechanical Engineering from University of New Hampshire.
John Karp (2016 - present)
John Karp is a Mechanical Engineer by training. He has broad experience in many aspects of business growth and has worked in business management since 1987. Since 2005, John has consulted in business management with a focus on strategy formation and implementation for growing his client companies. Additionally he served as CEO to turn around Bourgeois Guitars, a legendary brand of acoustic guitar distributed worldwide.
As a serial entrepreneur, John has served many functions including positioning for funding, new product feasibility analysis, investment due diligence, strategic planning, program management, marketing and sales programs. With several startups and a major turnaround to his credit ranging from a truck accessory business in his garage to a major technology spinout from Harvard Medical School, John brings unique national and international experience to clients. Most recently John doubled the revenues of a client company which was already in 7 figure revenues in 16 months by planning and implementing a structured growth strategy.
John works primarily with companies up to $10 million in revenues, keeping a sharp focus on client’s bottom line growth. As a member of Maine Angels, John is familiar with funding growth from both the investor and solicitation sides of deals.
Please see more detail at www.karpstrategic.com.
Paul Myer (2014-present)
In addition to being an Entrepreneur-in-Residence at MTI, Paul J. Myer is the Executive-in-Residence at the University of Maine Business School. His career spans politics and government policy, global business and academia. At the University of Maine Business School, he presents courses in marketing strategy, marketing communications, sales and retail management, and international business.
He also consults with a broad range of Maine businesses and community organizations. Paul has served as a mentor and presenter in the Top Gun Program and was a principle of UMaine’s Knowledge Transfer Alliance.
Paul and his wife Keiko arrived in Portland from Tokyo Japan in December 2002 and have maintained a residence on Crystal Lake in Gray, Maine.
Carl Spang (2014 - Present)
Carl Spang has thirty four years of experience in the management and development of companies within the Computer Hardware, Manufacturing Information Systems, Materials Handling, and Footwear industries.
Currently, Carl provides independent consulting services and serves as an Entrepreneur-in-Residence for the Maine Technology Institute. From 2007 to 2014, Carl was an owner and President of Falcon Performance Footwear in Auburn, Maine, which he purchased with a partner in 2007. Carl helped transition Falcon from bankruptcy into a profitable manufacturer of highly-engineered safety footwear for the North American firefighter market and international industrial markets. While Carl was President, Falcon was the 2011 recipient of the Maine MEP Manufacturing Excellence Award, the 2012 Maine International Trade Center’s Innovator of the Year award, and received the 2013 Governor’s Award for Business Excellence.
From 1994 to 2007, Carl owned and served as President of the Kestrel Group, Inc., a consulting company specializing in Enterprise-wide software implementations and Lean Manufacturing. Early clients included Sun Microsystems, Kodak, and EMC. In 2003, Carl shifted Kestrel’s focus to manufacturing companies with $50M – $200M annual revenue that were experiencing growth but eroding margins. During this period, Carl also served as interim CEO for two companies undergoing ownership transition.
From 1980 – 1994, Carl worked for Digital Equipment Company (DEC) of Maynard, MA, in a variety of management positions including Materials Manager for North American Field Service, Group Operations for Global Disk Drive Manufacturing, and Demand Manager for Personal Computing Manufacturing. Founded in 1957, the company employed more than 120,000 people worldwide at its peak in 1990 and earned more than $14 billion in revenue. Digital also pioneered peer-to-peer networked computer systems and maintained, in the 1980’s, the largest corporate computer network in the world.
Carl holds a B.S. degree from Boston University, and an M.A and M.B.A. from the University of New Hampshire.