Tracing its roots to the launch of the NYU Innovation Fund in 2010, the NYU Entrepreneurial Institute leads a university-wide initiative to accelerate the pace of technology commercialization and the launch of successful startups founded by NYU’s 60,000 students, faculty and researchers. The Institute’s team of startup experts and thought leaders offers educational programming, events, resources, and funding, to inspire, educate, connect, and accelerate entrepreneurs across NYU. Meet the team below, and learn more about our programs and events here.
Risa Cohn is a Program Coordinator at the NYU Entrepreneurial Institute. After receiving a MA from Hunter College in Adolescent Education, Risa Cohn worked at New Visions for Public Schools, a school support organization designing, planning and hosting professional development workshops for teachers, librarians, principals and mentors for schools across New York City. During her time at the Frances Hesselbein Leadership Institute, she transitioned to relaunching a program that worked with social, public and private sector organizations guiding them through an organizational self assessment process known as, "Peter Drucker's, The Five Most Important Questions," in order to reevaluate their mission and goals according to their customer base. Most recently, she consulted on a start-up venture for an education management professional seeking to establish their own personal tutoring agency, focusing on Social Studies content for adolescents as well as the NYS Regents.
Adam Cragg is the Programs Manager of the NYU Entrepreneurial Institute, where he develops educational offerings and events aimed at helping entrepreneurs across NYU. One of Adam’s primary focuses is the programming and construction of the new Leslie Entrepreneurs Lab, a collaborative skill-building space for students and faculty in the heart of the Washington Square campus.
Prior to joining NYU, Adam was with the MIT Entrepreneurship Center. Adam has worked with hundreds of student and faculty companies representing all industries and is passionate about building entrepreneurs’ skills and establishing a sense of community amongst NYU entrepreneurs.
Adam received his Bachelor of Arts from the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada.
Dee Dao joined the NYU Innovation Venture Fund in 2014 as an Associate, focusing on entrepreneurship and evaluating opportunities in life science and healthcare for the Fund’s investments.
Prior to joining the NYU Innovation Venture Fund, Dee was at the Ludwig Cancer Research where she contributed to early oncology therapeutic development planning and oversaw IP strategy to support the clinical development of the Institute’s therapeutics. Before that, Dee investigated bacterial virulence and immunity to identify new vaccines against Tuberculosis as a postdoctoral fellow in an HHMI laboratory at Albert Einstein College of Medicine. Currently, Dee also serves as a mentor for entrepreneurs participating in the Entrepreneurship Lab, a NYCEDC initiative.
Dee received a Ph.D. in Molecular Genetics/Developmental Biology at Columbia University and a B.S. in Chemistry from University of Pittsburgh.
Lindsey Marshall Gray is the Director of the NYU Entrepreneurial Institute, where she develops educational programs and events to inspire, educate, connect, and accelerate entrepreneurs across NYU. Lindsey is also a member of the Teaching Team for the National Science Foundation’s (NSF) Innovation Corps (I-Corps) program.
Prior to joining NYU, Lindsey worked for Innosight, an innovation firm founded by Clayton Christensen where she worked with Fortune 100 companies to help them identify strategic growth opportunities and build and invest in new businesses. She has worked with companies across a wide range of industries, and has helped clients establish a number of new high growth ventures.
Before joining Innosight, Lindsey was a Director for the marketing analytics consulting firm, Kantar Retail, where she helped develop and sell new technology solutions for the consumer packaged goods industry. Lindsey also worked at CVS /Caremark in the pharmacy retailer’s strategic product development group.
Lindsey received a Master of Business Administration from Harvard Business School and a Bachelor of Arts magna cum laude from Connecticut College.
Jerry Hao joined the NYU Innovation Venture Fund in 2014 with a focus on supporting entrepreneurship across the university and on the fund's technology investments. He views business, technology and subject matter expertise as equal partners in capturing opportunities and is passionate about solutions that improve life by removing barriers and enabling people. Prior to joining the NYU Innovation Venture Fund, Jerry sharpened his technical, product, and design chops as co-founder at Catch Coffee, a platform for better connecting people their alma mater. Jerry has also previously worked with the New York Angels and QLabs, a rapid prototyping lab created by AOL Ventures. He started his career as a security-focused enterprise technology product manager at Morgan Stanley.
Jerry holds a MBA with a concentration in Product Management from NYU Stern and a BBA with distinction in Finance from Baruch College.
Chris is a Program Coordinator at the NYU Entrepreneurial Institute, where he develops programs and organizes events for Faculty and Student entrepreneurs at NYU. Prior to joining the NYU Entrepreneurial Institute, Christopher studied Public Administration and Non-Profit Management at NYU's Wagner Graduate School of Public Service. During his studies, he focused on social innovation and entrepreneurship in the context of international development and served as Co-Director of Education and Incubation for Bridge, a social innovation student club. He received a Masters in English Education and Literature from the University of Graz, Austria and subsequently taught English as a Foreign Language in Austria. During this time he also consulted on various Africa-focused development projects.
Andy is Founder of Lean Launch Ventures and currently also works as Mentor at the Refinery, and as Advisor at Topstone Angels. He has deep knowledge and experience innovating, launching, and managing a variety of cutting edge tech-based businesses. He also spent 17 years as an “intrepreneur” within Microsoft Corporation initiating multiple new businesses. As an EIR at the Leslie eLab he is an invaluable resource helping NYU startups navigate the chaos of innovation and entrepreneurship.
Frank Rimalovski is the Executive Director of the NYU Entrepreneurial Institute. The Institute empowers entrepreneurs from idea to impact, offering educational programming, events, resources and funding, via the NYU Innovation Venture Fund, to inspire, educate, connect, and accelerate entrepreneurs across NYU. As Managing Director of the NYU Innovation Venture Fund, he is also responsible for evaluating, structuring and managing investments in early stage startups founded by and/or commercialization technologies and intellectual property developed by NYU students, faculties and researchers. Frank is also a member of the Teaching Team for the NSF’s I-Corps program.
Prior to joining NYU in 2010, Frank led the successful investment and spinout of multiple new ventures from Lucent/Bell Labs, British Telecom, IBM and IDEO, among others. He was a founding partner of venture capital firm New Venture Partners, was a director/entrepreneur-in-residence in Lucent's New Ventures Group, and has held various positions in marketing, business development and product management in Silicon Valley at Sun Microsystems, Apple and NeXT. Earlier in his career, he was an investment banker in the M&A groups of Bear Stearns and Rodman & Renshaw. Frank holds a BA in Economics from Tufts University and a MBA from Duke University's Fuqua School of Business.
Allison Weinger is the Program Coordinator of the NYU Entrepreneurial Institute, where she helps develop educational programs and events for entrepreneurs across NYU. Prior to joining NYU, Allison worked in legal recruiting Empire Search Partners where she developed and maintained relationships with law firms recruitment professionals. She also worked in recruiting at Dechert LLP where she coordinated the firms recruiting and Summer Associate programs. Before that Allison spent two years living in Florence Italy teaching English in schools and businesses.
Allison received her BA in Economics from Lehigh University and recently graduated from NYU with her MA in Administration, Leadership and Technology.