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EI Conference 2023 Speakers and Tech Scouts

Tim is a key asset to USSTRATCOM for discovering and delivering superior warfighting capabilities by providing comprehensive scientific and technical research and analysis, helping researchers, engineers, scientists, warfighters, and program managers solve the most challenging technical problems. The Defense Technology Information Center, DoD IACs provide technology discovery capabilities and an efficient mechanism to acquire affordable, improved defense capabilities that mitigate adversarial threats. The DoD IACs serve the needs of the Warfighter by bringing the “think tank” to the Battlespace and build communities of interest in areas of critical importance to the DoD, including defensive systems, cyber operations, weapon systems, homeland defense and resilient energy. He also has responsibilities supporting NORD-NORTHCOM and SPACECOM. Prior to his current position, Mr. Fowler served 25 years in the US Navy both active and reserve in a variety of tactical, staff and command positions in both the continental U.S. and overseas. Tours included starting out his career in Surface Warfare, with follow on tours in Tactical communications, Combat Engineer's, and Technology programs at the Office of Naval Research. While in ONR he worked in ONR Global "TechSolutions" and Code O3T Transitions. He retired in 2011 as a Commander at United States Strategic Command J81. His career spans from the Cold War to Deploying to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. Mr. Fowler also has a strong and diverse business background to include working in the Insurance, Energy, and Defense sectors. While in the Defense sector he has been a Project Manager for SBIR/STTR's, USSTRATCOM OSD (IPA) representative working and managing Emerging Technology programs such as the Joint Capabilities Demonstration Program. (JCTD) He was assigned to the White House Covid-19 Task Force during the first phases of the crisis to assist in responding to worldwide pandemic technology needs.

Joseph Haack is the Information Analysis Centers (IAC-FA) Field Science and Technology Advisor to USSOCCOM. n this position, he is a key asset to USSOCOM for discovering and delivering superior warfighting capabilities by providing comprehensive scientific/ technical research and analysis by helping researchers, engineers, scientists, warfighters and program managers solve the most challenging technical problems. The Defense Information Technology Center, DoD IACs provide technology discovery capabilities and an efficient mechanism to acquire affordable, improved defense capabilities that mitigate adversarial threats. The DoD IACs serve the Warfighter by bringing the “think tank” to the Battlespace, and build communities of interest in areas of critical importance to the DoD, including defensive systems, cyber operations, weapon systems, homeland defense and resilient energy. He also directly supports all of the Theater Special Operations Commands (TSOC's) worldwide and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). Mr. Joseph L. Haack Information Analysis Centers (IAC) Field Science and Technology Advisor U.S. Special Operations Command, USSOCOM MacDill AFB, FL Prior to his current position Mr. Haack served in the U.S. Army as a Lieutenant Colonel, retiring after serving 25 years. His duties as an Infantry, Armor and SOF-Civil Affairs Officer included Command and Staff positions advising commanders and leading Soldiers during peacetime and in combat. He capped his career as the Civil Military Operations Officer for US CENTRAL COMMAND, CCJ5 Plans Directorate, where he gained a detailed understanding of Joint Planning and Integrations for U.S. and Coalition Forces for conventional and special operations. He earned his BS from Western Michigan University, is a graduate of the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College and numerous Army schools for conventional and special operations. His awards include the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Joint Service and Army Commendation/Achievement Medals, Humanitarian Service Medal, UN Mission Medal (MINURSO), NATO Service Medal, Global War on Terror Expeditionary & Service Medals, the National Defense Service Medal and others. He was awarded the Combat Action Badge, the Master Parachutist Badge (88 jumps), the Air Assault Badge and the German Parachutist Badge. Mr. Haack has a love for history, earning the George S. Patton award for Military History, and the Order of St. George (Bronze) from the U.S. Army Armor Association. He has traveled or been assigned to 33 countries worldwide in Europe, Africa and the Middle East, to include training, combat (Iraq) and humanitarian operations/ disaster response (HADR) & Peacekeeping (PKO) deployments to Bosnia, Rwanda, Morocco, Western Sahara, Haiti, and Jordan. This diversity of cultural training, planning, deployments and mission support in combat and HADR/PKO missions gives him unique insight for theater requirements and interoperability between services, government agencies and with coalition/partner nations in peacetime and conflict.

Timothy Carty is the Founder and Director of Engineering at EMP Shield, Inc., in addition to holding a seat on the Board of Directors. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering from the Tennessee School of Engineering. Mr. Carty has over 40 years of practical experience in the electrical, information technology, data, communications, and public service sectors. During this time, he has founded and partnered businesses providing network design, automation, security systems, electrical supply, and system integrations. From 1987 to 2017, Timothy was responsible for securing B2 Stealth Bombers located at a Midwest Air Force Base, construction of federal and state detention facilities, touchscreen network design development for military and detention facilities, and wireless network highspeed internet development for a large city in the United States. During this period, he was the President/Owner of a company responsible for cellular and wireless internet network development in Guyana, South America. This included satellite Earth stations with point-tomultipoint wireless networks, voice-over internet protocol (VOIP), voice-over satellite (VOS), fixed, mobile wireless, and cellular networks. In 2017 Timothy cofounded EMP Shield, LLC, which was incorporated in May 2018. EMP Shield, Inc. specializes in the development and manufacture of devices designed to protect homes, businesses, electric grids, and more from high-altitude electromagnetic pulses (HEMP) and lightning strikes. It is during this period that he has become intimately involved in the design, testing, and certification of similar technologies, vulnerability assessments, associated federal-level policy development, and the mitigation, response, and recovery of critical infrastructure. Mr. Carty serves on (9) national working groups and committees concerning HEMP and national power resilience for the following organizations/departments: Department of Homeland Security Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, Department of Defense, Joint Base San Antonio, National Electrical Resilience Council, Federal Bureau of Investigation InfraGard – National Disaster Recovery Committee, Data Center Security, Domestic Electromagnetic Spectrum Operations, and National Resilience Power Work Group. He is a member of the National Security Collaboration Council, Homeland Defense, and Security Information Analysis Center. Timothy currently holds thirty-one patents individually and has co-developed an additional ten patents related to HEMP hardening, which are held by EMP Shield, Inc.

Currently serving US Central Command (USCENTCOM) through outreach support to small business and the discovery of innovative technology to meet both identified and potential future technical gaps. Before CENTCOM, Mark served as the Chief Technology Officer for Special Operations Command Central (SOCCENT) beginning in 2019 with a focus on supporting sensitive activities for the deployed SOF elements in the AOR. This was made possible due to Marks extensive knowledge of clandestine technologies as he directed the Technical Operations Division of SOCCENT for over ten years with one of those years spent in Industry working for Draper Laboratories in Cambridge, Mass. Prior to his tenure at SOCCENT, Mark worked at USSOCOM within the Program Executive Office, Special Reconnaissance where his priority focus was the Hostile Forces Tagging Tracking and Locating Program with sixty-four deployed Field Service Representatives supporting both OIR and OEF. Mark is a retired US Army Special Forces NCO from 5th Special Forces Group with multiple rotations to both Afghanistan and Iraq prior to his retirement. He is married to his wife Diane of 34 years with two daughters and is a Tampa native with many family members in and around the area.

Tech Scout

Kathleen Gilpin is the Director of Discovery & Engagement for APEX. In this role, she leads all outreach efforts to universities on a national scale and oversees the team charged with helping entrepreneurs through the SBIR/STTR process. She received her Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Rochester Institute of Technology, Master’s degree in National Security studies from Naval War College, Master’s degree in Ethics from Holy Apostles, and a Doctor of Philosophy in Neuroscience from the University of Maryland School of Medicine. She is a protein biochemist by training and researched neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s Disease and Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis during graduate school. She completed her post-doctoral fellowship at the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory where she studied Traumatic Brain Injury. Prior to APEX, she worked as a research scientist in the Warfighter Readiness Division of the Air Force Research Laboratory with an emphasis on increasing the performance of tactical operators. In addition to her scientific accomplishments, Kathleen served as a Surface Warfare Officer in the Navy on active duty for 5 years and continues to serve in the reserves. She is a 5x board-selected Commanding Officer and currently serves as the Commanding Officer of an expeditionary, rapid port-opening unit supporting Military Sealift Command.

Arthur K. Shaffer oversees the firm’s intellectual property (IP) practice area. For more than 20 years, he has worked with clients on patents, copyrights, trademarks, trade secrets, trade dress, licensing agreements and other intangible assets. He also works with computer law issues including Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA) and Digital Millennial Copyright Act (DMCA) and litigation of these issues. Specifically, he works to obtain, protect and litigate intellectual property rights in connection with computer and software systems; mechanical devices and medical systems; and other innovative technologies within the public and private sectors. His clients range from Fortune 500 companies to entrepreneurial and small business ventures. As a patent attorney and founder of Intellectual Property Center, Mr. Shaffer frequently speaks to local and national audiences in the areas of intellectual property law and the internet, providing guidance on its evolving legal landscape. Throughout his legal career, Mr. Shaffer has garnered significant experience in complex business transactions and litigation involving a variety of intellectual property concerns. A former physicist and controls engineer, Mr. Shaffer worked in cutting-edge technologies, utilizing computers and electrical systems in the largest and most challenging projects around the world. As a controls engineer, he worked on the control systems for the new Hong Kong airport. In his current, role, Mr. Shaffer works with both major corporations as well as individual entrepreneurs to protect their intellectual property rights. As an entrepreneur himself, Mr. Shaffer understands first-hand the many challenges faced by business owners. Partnering with his clients, he provides them with the resources they need to protect and grow their intellectual property.

Kevin Miyashiro is the CEO for Pacific Impact Zone, a Public Benefit Corporation that operates the Mission Acceleration Center Indo Pacific as part of the Mission Acceleration Center National Network. Mr. Miyashiro founded TeraSys Technologies in 2007 to develop advanced spectrum management and compatibility solutions for the military’s electronic warfare platforms. TeraSys captured and leveraged SBIR phase I, II, and II.5 to grow a portfolio of commercial and MIL grade RF products for platforms such as CREW, MCV, and JTRS. TeraSys Technologies was acquired by QuinStar Technology in 2019. Mr. Miyashiro’s prior career roles include serving as a private equity buy-side acquisition division executive, a venture-capital funded commercial startup engineer, and a senior program manager at Boeing. He received an MSEE from UCLA and a BSEE from the University of Hawaii. Mr. Miyashiro is a senior member of IEEE and served on the executive committee for the 2007 and 2017 International Microwave Symposiums.

Jim is an engineer turned entrepreneur, with a masters in Biomedical Engineering Product Development (2011) and a masters in Entrepreneurship (2009), he blends the business with the technical. Jim worked in the life sciences and medical devices helping to bring new products to market including a cancer laser ablation device, electrosurgical tooling and robotic sterilization. In addition Jim got one of the first mobile medical devices cleared by the FDA using an iPhone as a stethoscope. A 3 time founder, Jim's most recent company was Clara Biotech where Jim served as cofounder and CEO. The company was spun out from the University of Kansas in 2018, and was acquired by Innovaprep in the Summer of 2023. Clara Biotech's goal was to provide tools and materials to enable the next generation of liquid biopsy diagnostics and safe, targeted drug delivery. Today Jim advises small businesses in all aspects of growth, fundraising and development and is now serving as the Associate Director of the Biotools Innovators Accelerator. It's the first ever accelerator focused on life science research tools, helping to improve human health by accelerating the growth of life science tools and diagnostics companies.

OnRamp Hub


Thomas is a Venture Investment Manager for Entrepreneurial Growth Ventures (EGV), a business unit of NetWork Kansas that supports innovative high-growth entrepreneurs. EGV works with other entrepreneurial support partners to provide connections and access to business building resources and capital. EGV manages the GROWKS Equity programs which is deploying $27M through three capital programs working with angel investors and venture capital groups to fund scalable, high-growth companies in Kansas. Thomas’s duties include portfolio management, due diligence, and collaboration efforts across the state to build upon the growing ecosystem to help drive success for Kansas companies. Thomas graduated from Wichita State University with a BA in Finance and Management Information Systems.

John Addessi is a Business Advisor, adjunct instructor and Certified Global Business Professional with the Kansas Small Business Development Center at Johnson County Community College. John teaches seminars and consults on topics such as financing, business plans, marketing, international trade, e-commerce and more. Prior to joining the Kansas SBDC at JCCC, John was a consultant with the Kansas SBDC at Washburn University. John spent 15 years in management in the public and private sectors. He supervised the Language Learning Center at the University of Rhode Island and was sales manager for central Kansas with CellularONE. He received his bachelor’s degree in Russian and his MBA in general management from the University of Rhode Island. John has owned his own e-commerce sites and is familiar with the challenges facing small businesses in a competitive market.

Laurie is now serving as the Director of Strategic Initiatives for Koucar Management and Kouza Capital. For the previous few she worked with NASA HQ and the Office of Naval Research on programs designed to help better connect small businesses to the DOD and transition technology. From 2016-202 she served as the Executive Director of DEFENSEWERX overseeing two locations in Florida; one in Las Vegas, Nevada; a facility in Montgomery, Alabama; one in Vicksburg, Mississippi; an office in Flint, Michigan; and a facility in Augusta, Georgia. These locations are funded by Air Force Research Laboratory at Eglin Air Force Base, USSOCOM at MacDill Air Force Base, the Secretary of the Air Force, Air University, Army Corp.,the Office of the Secretary of Defense, and the Army. Laurie received her Bachelor of Science Degree in Packaging Engineering from Michigan State University in 1982. She held various business development and executive level positions with several Fortune 500 companies. Laurie joined her father’s company, Schmald Tool & Die, as Sales Manager in 1995. She purchased the business in 1997. In 2007 Laurie established Adaptive Manufacturing Solutions LLC; a vertically integrated collaborative of Michigan based companies. In 2011 she established ReSET, Restructuring Skills thru Education & Technology, and the Manufacturing Innovation Technology Institute (MITI). ReSET worked with students and educational institutions from K-12, Community Colleges, and Universities to provide hands on experiential learning in a fully operating facility focusing on advanced manufacturing, innovation, and entrepreneurship.

Jeff Shackelford is the President & CEO of the Enterprise Center located in Johnson County. The ECJC is a 27 year-old organization that has had an economic impact of over $3B for our region by supporting and funding early-stage, high-growth potential companies. ECJC is home to the Women’s Business Center, Mid-America Angels Network, Growth Mentoring Service, Equipped-4-Equity program, Fountain Innovation Fund and Kansas Entrepreneurs Policy network. Prior to joining the Enterprise Center in July, 2019, Jeff was executive director of Digital Sandbox KC, a proof-of-concept center designed to help move early-stage entrepreneurs from concept-to-commercialization. Since launching in 2013, the program has funded development projects for over 200 local, early-stage start-ups and has assisted in securing over $100M in equity investment for 90 Sandbox companies. These companies have created over 1,000 new Kansas City region jobs. Mr. Shackelford has a unique and diverse professional background with a rare combination of Fortune 100 enterprise experience coupled with entrepreneurial, start-up and early stage ventures that includes a successful track record in capital fund-raising of over $500M. Mr. Shackelford holds a bachelor’s degree in Computer Science from the University of Kansas.



Bijo Mathew is the visionary Founding Director of the Technology Commercialization Center at the South-West Texas Border Small Business Development Center (SBDC) Lead Network, located at The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA). As a seasoned scientific program director, innovative researcher, and Principal Investigator (PI), Mr. Mathew brings a wealth of expertise to his role. With over 20 years of experience in academia, basic and applied R&D, strategy and business development, technology commercialization, innovation, and public-private partnerships, Mr. Mathew is the driving force behind developing regional strategies and providing executive direction to enhance innovation. At the SBDC Technology Commercialization Center, Mr. Mathew oversees programs that provide access to groundbreaking, high-impact, and high-risk funding for applied and translational research opportunities. In collaboration with regional SBDC partners and universities, Mr. Mathew offers technical assistance to increase awareness about proof of concept and early-stage funding opportunities to advance the commercialization of technological and scientific innovations, discoveries, and technology transfer opportunities. Mr. Mathew’s expertise in acquiring Federal (SBIR & STTR), Corporate & State grant funding for applied interdisciplinary research and development is unparalleled. He has a demonstrated track record of success in the multidisciplinary applications of material science and engineering in subject areas of nanotechnology, photocatalysis, metamaterials, nanomaterials, surfactant applications, high surface area materials, polymer nanocomposites, carbon nanotubes (SWNT & MWNT), nanowires, energy storage materials, synthetic biology, medical diagnostics, and biomedical projects. Mr. Mathew received his MBA and Master of Science in Chemical, Biological & Material Science Engineering from the University of Oklahoma. As the Principal Investigator (PI) to the Small Business Administration (SBA) Federal and State Technology (FAST) Partnership Program award to support R&D and Small Business Innovation across the State of Texas, Mr. Mathew is committed to the development of the region and its growth potential. His corporate executive roles have included V.P. of Strategy & Business Development and Executive Director of Innovation and Public-Private Partnerships. As the Technology Commercialization Center’s Founding Director, Mr. Mathew leads the charge to advance regional innovation and entrepreneurship. His dedication and expertise make him an invaluable member of the UTSA community and the perfect person to lead the charge in developing the region’s potential for growth and development.

Jessica Ervin is the Technology Innovation Director for the Oklahoma Small Business Development Center Network. She began her career with the SBDC in 2015 as a part time general business advisor and transitioned to full time the in 2016. In her current role she assists clients with technology commercialization, contracting with the Department of Defense and other federal agencies, SBIR/STTR proposals, and strategic planning. Jessica holds a Bachelor’s Degree in business with a minor in education from Texas A&M-Commerce. Continuing her professional development, she has earned certifications in Export and Trade Counseling, Technology Commercialization, Advanced Facilitator Training, Credit Counseling, and GrowthWheel. Prior to joining Oklahoma SBDC, Jessica was involved in marketing, public relations, retail merchandising, and nonprofit management. She has a background in production, competition, and event promotion within the bucking stock industry. Jessica enjoys reading and spending time with her children. She is active in her community, church, and her local school district.

Chris Pennington is a Business Advisor for the Kansas SBDC, specializing in Tech Transfers/Commercialization at Pittsburg State University, and is the owner of a tech startup. The startup, Questable, is an application geared towards recruitment and retention activities of cadets in officer training programs as well as higher education organizations. Prior to joining the Kansas SBDC, Chris, was a client of the Kansas SBDC and attended Encountering Innovation. Chris earned his MBA from the Kelley School of Business at Indiana University, Bloomington and has over 20 years of experience in working with several of the top brands/companies in the Midwest/US.

Alan Badgley is known for his enthusiasm in fostering innovation and advancing technology commercialization. As the founder and Director of the respected Encountering Innovation Conference, now celebrating its seventh year of success, Alan has become a persistent force in the realm of attracting innovators with technological advancement and economic development. His ongoing tech commercialization program at Pittsburg State University's Economic Development Community Engagement is a testament to his unwavering commitment to pushing the boundaries of what's possible. Alan's work is distinguished by his close collaboration with DoD Combatant Command Tech Scouts, where he leverages a wealth of experience accumulated over sixteen years in Small Business Development Centers. Combining these two, Alan has cultivated a network that attracts and nurtures technology innovators, expanding the horizons of his team's reach and impact. He insists on ensuring others that it’s the strong inner circle team that has made this endeavor possible. Rooted in a background in the electric utility business, Alan's foundational education in electrical distribution equips him with a unique perspective on the technical aspects of the innovations he encounters daily. Yet, the special focus on strategic planning during his pursuit of an MBA in Finance and Marketing sets him apart and infuses his approach for ongoing success that fosters innovation. Meanwhile, whether Alan is creating a birthday card, sketching, or playing his guitar on his (now infamous) screened-in back porch, he escapes the challenges of innovation for a moment. Here, he gains a special point of view that refreshes his perspective on the world and fuels his passion for innovation. As he listens to acoustic guitar melodies playing old hymns in the background and watches the leaves transform into autumn colors, he is thankful for the profound connection between the beauty of nature and the drive to bring small businesses and tech scouts together for the creation of innovative solutions that will ensure a safer tomorrow. Alan’s obsession is not just about a shared vision of a brighter, more innovative future; it’s about connecting people and ideas, fostering an ecosystem of working together. With his unique blend of experience, education, and networking, he dreams of continuing to navigate the challenging, ever-evolving landscape of technological innovation and small business development. After all, it’s either chaotic or dynamic, right?!?


Tech Scout
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