Our 70+ mentors represent a multitude of industries and business expertise. They have all enjoyed success in their careers and are committed to giving you the support, encouragement, and tools needed to build and sustain your business. Use these links to jump directly to a particular category.
- Accounting, Finance, Banking
- Business Management, Planning, and Organization
- E-Commerce, Information Technology, and Social Media
- Hospitality and Food Products
- Legal Services
- Marketing, Sales, and Public Relations
- Media, Entertainment
- Not-for-profit Businesses
- Real Estate, Construction
- Retail, Wholesale, Manufacturing, Distribution (Fashion/Apparel)
- Retail, Wholesale, Manufacturing, Distribution (Other Products)
- Technical Services, Engineering
Unless otherwise noted, all mentors can be contacted by clicking on the individual mentor's name in their bios, below.
Accounting, Finance, Banking
Meredith Adler. Former nationally ranked Wall Street bond and stock analyst, primarily of retailers and distributors of consumables. Expertise in developing business and financial plans, the handling and distribution of food products.
Guru Baliga. Senior executive in major financial institutions. Experienced in fund raising, business valuation, business plans, and investment strategies.
Bruce Berger, CPA. Chief financial officer and chief information officer at three major corporations, experienced in development and implementation of enterprise computer systems; as an independent consultant, worked with specialty retail chains and multi-location distributors and manufacturers. Expert in business plans, accounting, budgeting, financial analysis and IT.
Jeff Chertoff. Chief Financial Officer at various companies including startups primarily in financial services and financial tech. Expert in business accounting, business plans, general management and strategic planning.
Aida Kalla. Senior executive in global corporate finance with major international banks in the US/ overseas. Owner of own financial restructuring consulting firm. Expert in helping companies funds their growth strategies and reorganize their business structures. Experience in business plans, accounting, financial analysis including budgeting and forecasting.
Nate Lawrence. Fintech entrepreneur, finance and operations specialist, economics researcher, and educator; experience in financial and education tech sectors. Expert in startup business plan development, financial management, and strategic planning. Speaks Portuguese, Spanish, and French.
Business Management, Planning, and Organization
Albert Angel. Senior executive at Merck & Co., co-founder of a bio-tech company, and active board memeber of non-profits. Expert in organizational consulting, business plans, staffing, non-profit start-ups, governance, management, and international pharmaceutical and bio-tech businesses.
Jerry Baron. Owner of a financial services firm. Expertise in creative management, employee benefit plans and risk management instruments. Experience in business management and business strategies including non-profits.
Sandy Eames. Marketing and business development executive and consultant to small-to-large medical electronics companies; active volunteer with non-profits. Expert in business model development, business plans, outbound marketing, product development, strategic alliances, and non-profits.
Jill Friedlander. Co-founder and president of mainstream book publishing company which was sold to multi-national publishing company. Experience in advising and participating in start-ups, small businesses and non-profits. Expertise in developing and implementing strategic, business and financial plans, and in building relationships with key stakeholders.
Sam Gross. Co-founder and head of research for an online publisher, with previous experience in business development for a VC-backed data technology company and as an analyst in real estate banking. Experience includes developing content strategies, analyzing data and internal processes to shape business decisions, implementing tools and technology to automate and streamline operations, and building partnerships between companies.
Mark Handsman. Senior financial services executive with extensive experience in Treasury, Operations, Finance and Project Management. COO of a startup Management Consulting company, performing virtually all aspects of running a startup. Can provide actionable advice toward developing business plans, creating appropriate business structures, addressing funding issues and developing a realistic strategic plan.
Carolyn Katz. Banker, venture capital investor and consultant specializing in media, tech and communication companies; founder of a ePublishing / eCommerce company. Expert in financing, preparation of pitch and investor materials, strategy and operations, business plans, financial projections and models.
Stephen Kessler. Chief financial officer, division general manager for major private and public companies in consumer packaged goods, publishing, Internet, and high-growth start-up companies. Expert in business plans development and strategic planning, information technology.
Lisa Lindsey. Executive coach and human resources consultant with experience enhancing the performance of individuals, teams and organizations. Expertise in human resources, legal operations and start-up experience, including executive roles in cybersecurity and building services organizations.
Shelley Orenstein. Chief Operating Officer, co-founder and board member of software/consulting firms. Experience in start-up plan development, growth strategy, financial planning and due diligence requirements for selling a company.
Leena Parikh. Director in Fortune 100 financial services company with various roles in business and product strategy. Expert in business plans, pricing, financial analysis and project management.
Rob Rinderman. Advisor and communications consultant to senior executives at public and private organizations. Recently joined boutique investment bank and assisting valuations firm with business development. Expert in helping earlier stage, entrepreneurial organizations with marketing and social media outreach strategy.
Irene Rivera. Leadership trainer and coach with expertise in women’s leadership, business start up strategy & planning, operations, client relations, change management and human resource management.
Marc Spurr. Founder and CEO of a municipal bond firm; chief information officer with experience in government, aerospace, and financial institutions, computer, and communications operations. Expert in sales, general business management, investment management, and technical services.
Claude Trahan, executive and lawyer. Formerly lead human resources officer and senior operations officer for large energy company. Legal background in law firm, corporate, government and judicial organizations. Strategic, legal, operational and administrative experience. Expert in litigation, human resources, business management and strategic and business planning.
Charlie Vasey. Charlie has spent most of his career in Telecommunications and has deep experience in Strategic Planning, Business Plan Development, and Financial Modeling.
Burt Wallerstein. Executive with department stores and discount chains; owner of a sales, marketing, and sourcing agency for apparel and sundries; consultant to small wholesale and retail businesses. Expertise in new business model development, brand building, retail, strategic alliances, supply chain, licensing and importing.
Jerry Weinstein. Entrepreneur, member of multiple boards, business executive experienced in manufacturing-oriented businesses, construction products and materials, public and private corporations and the global marketplace. Expert in managing start-ups, turnarounds, and non-profit organizations.
Gary Zaremba. Creating, running, selling and closing various businesses for over 30 years. Gary can assist with planning, marketing, raising capital and growth strategies. "I am a creative sounding board to help you nuture your business dreams into a vibrant reality or take your existing entity to another level."
Mitch Zaretsky. 40+ years experience in developing, implementing and evaluating business operations processes and performance measurement systems for-profit and non-profit organizations. Extensive experience in building and operating small businesses, such as a non-profit school and a company specializing in providing health insurance to small businesses.
E-Commerce, Information Technology, and Social Media
Jim Alles. Chief executive of an international chemical company, experienced in manufacturing and marketing of pharmaceuticals, plastic films, and polymers, as well as in technology solutions and non-profits. Expert in strategic and business planning, finance, human resources, manufacturing, e-commerce, social media, and Web strategy.
Bob Fitterman. Co-founder and chief technology officer of multiple startups. Experienced in market data, location-based business discovery, geodata, and mobile phone services. Expert in software design, product creation, agile methodologies, IP issues, due diligence, team management and growth.
Ethan Tishchenko. CEO and founder of a logistics company in e-commerce and former C-level executive of the largest worldwide companies. Expert in startup-planning, digital marketing and sales strategies. Experience in telecommunications, digital integration solutions, logistics, e-commerce.
Hospitality and Food Products
Liza Smalling. Background in operations and multi-unit restaurant management. Key skills are bolstering organizational goals, reputation, and output. Other areas of expertise include business strategy, planning, management, and organizational development.
Yosef Kirschenbaum. Involved with food service since childhood, worked in and now advising his own family's restaurant/catering operations. Experienced with both production and management of Food Service Operations. Worked and consulted to many restaurants, hotels, caterers and manufacturers. Also a licensed Realtor focused on location scouting and lease negotiations.
Susan Shapiro. President and CEO of a major U.S.-Canada travel consortium that markets travel projects to agency clients; experienced in development of marketing materials, customer databases, and Web sites. Expert in outbound marketing, strategic alliances, sales, event planning, and public relations.
Ivan Szanto. Skype Only Mentoring. Chief executive of import and wholesale distribution company of hard goods and hunting and camping equipment; experienced in product development, purchasing, import/export procedures, trade, finance, and operations. Expert in international trade, business start-ups and their legal aspects, business plans, and intellectual property law.
Madeline Baer. Intellectual property attorney; Partner and counsel in large law firms in New York City. Research Associate in Molecular Biology. Expertise in patents, copyrights and trademarks, pharmaceuticals and biotechnology.
Edward Cowen.Attorney, Senior Partner of a prominent national law firm; Chairman of New York City Bar Association’s Committee on Bankruptcy and Corporate Reorganization. Expert in business law, financial restructuring, bankruptcy counseling, loan and credit transactions, and business work-out arrangements.
Lawrence I. Drath, Attorney experienced in real estate transactions including hospitality industry facilities, arbitrator resolving business disputes in commercial agreements. Expert in structuring business entities and partnership and joint venture agreements.
Fletcher Duke. Attorney for several NYC banks; experienced in finance, taxation, business turnarounds, bankruptcy, buying and selling businesses, litigation management. Expert in a wide range of businesses, including real estate.
See also Claude Trahan.
Marketing, Sales, and Public Relations
Jehann Biggs. 17+ years Marketing Leader at Fortune 500 Biotech and Consumer Goods Firms. Launched over 15 products in 15 years spanning,personal care to healthcare brands. Holds 8 patents for new Product innovation. Expert in Product Strategy, Multichannel Marketing, New product introduction, Brand Building/Renovation, Business Plan/Business Model Development, Sales, Operations, Product Development.
Tim Contado. Seasoned marketer with experience in CPG and food products.Marketing and sales executive with cinema advertising company. Expert in business management, advertising and marketing strategy, media and entertainment, and new product development.Experience in recruiting, public relations, and retail.
Howard Geltzer. Owner, creative director of a PR firm; executive director and managing director of a major PR firm; faculty of NYU Stern Business School; creator of award-winning new-product introductions and communications programs for major U.S. and international corporations.
Karen Gershowitz. Marketing strategy and research consultant with Fortune 500 financial institutions, technology and service provider clients; experience in the performing arts sector. Expert in marketing, marketing research, strategy, product and service development.
Lyn S. Hill. Chief communications officer for large urban hospital and for academic institutions, with responsibility for media, government and community relations; print and digital publications, publicity and advertising. Active on several non-profit boards. Expert in public relations, marketing, community outreach, fund raising.
Jeff Landau .Marketing professional with experience in Inks and Coatings industry, Specialty Chemicals and B2B E-commerce. Roles included application chemist, sales, marketing consultant and trainer. Expert in collaboration, business model innovation, and sales and marketing strategies.
Arthur Levin. Founder and President of a law firm consulting and training business; experienced in working with professional services firms on sales, marketing, profitability and administrative issues. Expert in business development and marketing strategies.
Bob Mate. Senior sales and marketing executive with extensive experience in media, new products, direct marketing, sales management. Expert in developing both business and marketing plans, growing business from the bottom up and turning around struggling brands and businesses.
Robert Serabin. Sales and marketing executive in aerospace, industrial, and commercial markets, experienced in working with large corporations and small companies. Expert in sales/marketing planning and strategy development.
Norman Sherman. 40+ years of marketing and advertising experience, working with Fortune100 companies like Procter & Gamble, Mars, Kraft Foods, LG among many others. Deep knowledge of marketing, strategy, positioning, branding and advertising.
Bailis Stair - Marketing, Sales and Business Strategy Executive with track record of developing and executing international growth plans for Fortune 500 companies. Expert in marketing strategy, business planning, product development and global business customs.
Mary Tan. Marketing executive with a global consumer products company; department store buyer for a major retail chain. Expert in brand building, inbound and outbound marketing strategy for profit and non-profit companies, new product development, business development, and strategic planning.
Kelley Woodland. Marketing Leader with Top-Tier Consumer Goods companies; owner of a Brand Strategy & Business Building Consulting Firm. Expert in brand strategy, marketing strategy, business model strategy, and business plan development. Significant experience in the snacks, personal care, skincare, and wellness categories.
Jack Cohn. Owner and producer of a TV commercial production company experienced in television production; marketing, advertising, and sales strategy and planning; Wall Street portfolio and securities analysis. Expert in business, marketing, and sales operations, strategy, and planning.
PK Ramani. Experienced senior executive in the telecommunications industry (Cable TV, High Speed Internet and Digital Phone) and entrepreneur. Extensive experience in improving customer satisfaction/experience, sales and optimizing business processes /operations.
Lee Simonson. CEO and Founder of 2 media companies and former President of a strategic consulting firm. Expert in start-up planning, customer acquisition, sales and marketing strategies.
Carol Teten. Founded and built a non-profit professional dance company, which performed throughout the United States and a for-profit publishing company, which produced dance history videos for educational purposes. As an artistic director and business entrepreneur, her expertise is in non-profits, business planning, and marketing for niche interests.
See also Sam Gross.
Barbara Grumet. Dean, School of Professional Studies, CUNY Brooklyn campus; academic administrator of a community college; executive director, board president, and board member in several non-profit organizations; experienced in health and human services. Expert in business plans, start-ups, education, and training.
Harry Precourt. Independent management and financial consultant; senior executive with major banking and accounting organizations. Expert in banking, business planning, workout and turnaround situations and financials for non-profits.
Real Estate, Construction
Gerry Vasisko. Managed a consulting architecture, planning and interior design firm. Expertise in project planning and execution, human resources, financial and workload projections, staffing, computer and CAD resources, preparing or supervising client and construction contracts. Experience in office management and staff mentoring techniques.
Retail, Wholesale, Manufacturing, Distribution (Fashion/Apparel)
Harry Dannenberg. Executive in women’s designer, better, and popular-priced footwear, retail and wholesale; experienced in developing and bringing footwear to market. Expert in shoe manufacturing, import, and distribution.
J. Vincenzo (Vince) Gatto. Owner of retail apparel stores; consultant to small men’s-apparel retailers; professor of marketing at Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT); experienced in food- and home-industry start-ups. Expert in management, development of business plans for start-ups, brandpositioning and -repositioning, marketing, and promotion.
Neil Puro. Founder of a domestic, multi plant, Home Furnishings Manufacturing company. Experienced in all segments of running a fast-paced entrepreneurial business: cut and sew, import & export, supply chain management, product development, marketing, and costing.
See also Jeff Landau.
Retail, Wholesale, Manufacturing, Distribution (Other Products)
Laura Beechwood. Co-Owner and Chief Operating Officer of global packaging company. Expert is business planning, marketing/sales strategies, lean manufacturing and mergers and acquisitions. Experienced in small business start-ups. Background also includes consultancy to artists who need to improve business/marketing skills.
Alice Campbell. Merchandising executive with long career at American luxury jeweler and specialty retailer in New York City and Hong Kong. Expertise includes: category management (e.g., assortment planning, new product planning, pricing, distribution), sales and trend analysis, space planning and jewelry product development. Holds G.G. degree from the GIA (Gemological Institute of America).
Donald Gottheimer. Founder and president of a distributor/retail chain of branded cosmetics, fragrance, and hair-care products. Expert in all aspects of starting, operating and building a successful business organization, from site selection to operations and marketing to ultimate P&L responsibility.
Evan Janovic. Chief Executive in decorative and interior paint business for consumer, contractor, and institutional businesses. Experienced in business management, planning, and organization. Expert in retail, manufacturing, import, and distribution.
John Kirkland. Deep industry experience in consumer products, retail operations, venture capital, consumer food and pharmaceuticals. Functional experience in creating and executing business plans, workforce development, organizational strategies. Deep operating experience in non-profits with focus on workforce development services for the under-served.
Technical Services, Engineering
Michael Snyder. Executive in electronics industry engineering and manufacturing company; experienced in operations marketing, engineering and manufacturing. Expert in business plans, cost reductions, staffing, restructuring, product and service development and product introductions.#marketing