Job Creation through Capital Donation

Investment Committee Members

Mark Burish is a co-founder of the Madison, Wisconsin law firm of Hurley Burish, S.C. He is also chairman of Sonic Foundry and sits on the board of Monona Bank, Forward Health Group and several other businesses and non-profit groups....

Board Member

Pam Evason...

Jonathan Fritz is a Partner with HealthX Ventures, a Madison based early stage venture capital organization...

President

Jeff Harris has been an investor in and board member of a number of early stage companies in located in Wisconsin, including Somna Therapeutics LLC (currently) and Prodesse Inc. (which was sold in 2009). He is currently on the Board of...

Lorrie Keating Heinemann is President & CEO of the Madison Development Corporation (MDC). MDC has funded over 200 emerging and high tech companies in the Madison area including Nordic Consulting, TomoTherapy, PerBlue, Stemina Biomarker and NeuWave Medical. She most recently served as...

Lisa Johnson is CEO of BIOForward. She served 3.5 years as WEDC's vice president for entrepreneurship and innovation. Before joining WEDC, Johnson worked in the biotech industry for 22 years. She held executive positions at Novagen Inc. and EMD Biosciences Inc., the North American life sciences...

Mike Malatesta is a successful entrepreneur and business executive. He founded, built and sold one of the largest environmental services companies in the Upper Midwest. Currently, Mike leads AMS Environmental, LLC and Elite Environmental, LLC, both environmental services company he recently...

Board Treasurer

Dan Matola, CFA, is BrightStar’s treasurer, and Partner and Senior Relationship Manager with RMB Jacobus. Previously he served as President and Chief Investment Officer of Jacobus Wealth Management, responsible for leading the...

Michelle J. Picard is an active investor in early stage companies, several of which are headquartered in Wisconsin. With more than 20 years of industry experience, Ms. Picard recently retired from her position as principal, Portfolio Manager, and Investment Strategy Group member at Henderson...

Jeff Rusinow, a member of the Wisconsin Investment Hall of Fame, is an active angel investor who founded the Silicon Pastures Angel Network after spending 22 years in retail management with Gimbels, Macy’s and Kohl’s. Subsequently, he has been Chairman and lead investor in two startups that have...

Executive Chairman

Thomas M. Shannon currently is President & CEO of BrightStar Wisconsin Foundation, Inc. As Co-founder in 2013, he donates his time as head of this charitable organization whose mission it is to create high growth jobs through early-stage investment. The...

Board Member

Andy Shrago serves on the boards of Pinpoint Software and HDL Diagnostics. He previously was Chairman of the Board of Proxim Diagnostics Corp and served on several other companies’ boards. From 2011-2016, he was a co-manager of the Wisconsin Investment Partners angel...

Executive Director and Portfolio Manager

Todd Sobotka is our Executive Director and Chair Investment Committee. He has a law degree and has spent the vast majority of his professional career with early stage and small businesses as an owner, advisor, consultant, and/or part of the leadership team.  He has personally been involved with...

Jay Wigdale is founder of Milwaukee based Lakefront Partners. Launched in 1998 Lakefront makes concentrated investments in early stage companies primarily focused in business/healthcare services and technology. He has served as a director for LogicStream Health, Ability Network (formerly...