We are entrepreneurs with a wide range of talents and experience spanning industries and skill sets. First and foremost we have a passion around creating and growing businesses.

Ray Shealy

Ray Shealy

Investor relations
Focus: Healthcare IT

Ray Shealy was selected by American Venture Magazine as one of the top “40 Under Forty” executives in the US in 2007. He is a successful operator with over 20 years of senior executive leadership ranging from green-field startups to Fortune 500 companies. As a serial entrepreneur, Ray is adept at helping software companies grow exponentially by focusing on strategy, innovation and execution. Ray’s management style enables him to positively connect, communicate and inspire customers, employees and investors at all levels.

Greg Ruf

Greg Ruf

Focus: EduTech, HR/Recruiting

Greg is a highly successful entrepreneur with significant experience in on-line recruitment technology, talent management and executive recruiting. Over the past 23 years, he has launched five ventures, including Resume-Link, one of the first businesses to computerize the recruitment industry. After growing Resume-Link into a highly successful company, he sold it to BrassRing. Several years later, he co-founded MBA Focus, building upon his experience in on-line recruiting to again provide groundbreaking technological services to employers seeking to hire MBA graduates and alumni from the world’s top MBA programs.

Matt Armstead

Matt Armstead

Mentor relations
Focus: Big Data, Hospitality, Consumer Internet

Matt is an entrepreneur, senior executive, strategic investor and advisor. His strategic vision and hands-on execution in vast functional business disciplines has proven time and time again how to successfully conceive, build, fund and grow a technology company. He knows, first hand, the importance of getting to market quickly, leveraging creative sales channels and relationships; and having an agile, iterative development cycle at every stage of a company's trajectory.

Brooke Paul

Brooke Paul

Corporate development
Focus: EduTech, Cybersecurity, Hospitality

Brooke Paul founded his first company in 1993 and has continued to build new companies and consult with many emerging companies in the Internet technology, software, and IT security industries.  He has served as a CEO, CTO, a founder, and an investor for several technology companies and has helped numerous early stage companies raise capital, grow revenue, develop products, and successfully exit.  He provides business strategy, product management, and investment to high potential start-up companies. Most recently he co-founded MobileWait, a restaurant services provider, and successfully exited it after two years of operations.

Todd Whittington

Todd Whittington


Todd Whittington has over twenty years of experience in marketing, executive management and product development. During that same time period, he has launched three ventures, all of which he successfully exited. A former aerospace engineer, Todd has worked both as a designer of efficient and lean business process and in roles responsible for retail marketing strategy and product development for a Fortune 500 companies.

David Hunegnaw

David Hunegnaw

Community Development

Internet entrepreneur with 6 startups in just 8 years, including just-launched AboutOurWork.com and GrooveJob.com – a job board for high school and college students with over 1MM users and 110,000 jobs across that country which sold to publicly traded Internet Brands. Other successful projects include co-founding of DOmedia – a marketplace for OOH and alternative advertising (now an NCT Ventures Company) and HeadStartup.com – a site that provides detailed reviews of cloud-based software apps for startups.

Chrisopher Celeste

Christopher Celeste

Focus: Consumer Internet

Christopher Celeste has spent more than twenty years catalyzing ideas in politics, marketing and business. Christopher's affinity for "campaigns" took him from politics to advertising where he spent fifteen years in various marketing agencies, eventually serving as president of several firms including Resource (www.resource.com), a national technology marketing firm, where he managed offices in Columbus and San Francisco. In 2004, Christopher became a Founder & the first President of FindawayWorld. Christopher helped to lead Findaway from a start-up idea to a profitable, Inc 500 success. In 2010, after selling his interest in Findaway, Christopher shifted his attention to Hatch (www.hatch.us.com), a boutique consultancy whose mission is to provide coaching, connections & capital to early-stage entrepreneurs.

Shawn O

Shawn O'Reilly

Shawn is a successful entrepreneur, executive, and investor. His experience over the past 20 years ranges from consulting and C-suite roles in corporate environments, to the management of start up, launch and operation of new ventures, along with investing in ventures at various stages. Shawn co-founded Robert Gregory Partners, an executive coaching firm based in Dublin, Ohio. Robert Gregory Partners has developed an advanced coaching methodology that pushes past traditional approaches and opens new opportunities for executives to achieve their full leadership potential and advance a company’s overall success.


Kristie Nicolosi

Kristie Nicolosi is the President and CEO of The Kingswood Company, the industry’s leading supplier of private-label fine jewelry care products. Nicolosi travels extensively , both nationally and internationally, keeping up with the latest trends in the industry. Throughout her career, Nicolosi has been active in organizations and efforts to support and mentor women. She is a strong advocate of women’s issues and values this connection as long-time board member and supporter of TheWomen’s Fund of Central Ohio. Prior to acquiring The Kingswood Company, Nicolosi had a successful career in the financial services industry.

Joel Gerber)

Joel Gerber

Joel Gerber has over twenty-five years of experience in product development, executive management, and marketing. Over the course of his career he has launched two internal start-ups for Sterling Commerce that resulted in $80M in annual revenue. Recently he helped turn around a mobile security start-up, resulting in a successful exit. As Sr VP of Technology at Blue Diesel, Joel blends vision, technical knowledge, and creativity to engineer business solutions for leading pharmaceutical companies. As a mentor for Founders Factory, start-ups can leverage Joel's extensive technology and mobile background to accelerate their businesses.

Brian Stone

Brian Stone

R. Brian Stone is a practicing designer, educator, and researcher in the area of interaction design, information design, user experience, and communication through motion. He teaches Visual Communication in the Department of Design at The Ohio State University and is a principal partner in the international consultancy, Latitude 40 Design and founding member of Designers 421. His work has garnered numerous awards for design excellence, usability, and user satisfaction. As a mentor for Founders Factory, Brian brings a perspective on design and user experience that is invaluable to startups companies.

Rob Emrich)

Rob Emrich

Rob founded the nonprofit Road of Life in 2001 which has distributed over $70 million dollars of cancer prevention curriculum; BULX in 2010, the first private sales ecomerce site for home improvement (acquired by Dealyard.com in 2011); Boundaryless Brands in 2008 a multi-channel ecommerce retailer (acquired in 2011); and SpeakerSite the worlds largest onine marketplace of public speakers in 2008. He and his work have appeared on National Public Radio, Inc.com, PBS, and American City Business Journals. He has lectured at The Ohio State University, Kenyon College, the John Glenn School of Public Affairs, MetroHealth Hospital and Startup Weekend among others. In 2004, he was the youngest person (at age 24) ever to win Forty Under 40, from Business First Columbus.

Tadd Seitz

Tadd Seitz is a long-time corporate executive who has seen the light and now spends some of his time advising and investing in start-up to medium-sized companies. During his time with The Scotts Company as CEO he lead the company through an early turn around, then a leveraged buyout from ITT Corp., took it public and then a merger with Miracle- Gro. He retired at an early age in 1996. Tadd has served on public and private company boards and has learned from experience the joys of victory as well as the agony of defeat. Some of his investments have included Cold Jet Technologies, United Pension Plan Consultants, Digital Storage, Ultimate Software, West Point Products, EC Next[ now Manta Media], ClearSaleing and most recently MBA Focus and InfoMotion. In his business relations he first looks for a potentially outstanding team of management and advisors and then the meaningful and unique consumer benefit. After that it is the size of the potential market and returns to investors. Tadd is looking forward to participating with The Founders Factory in building new and great businesses.


David Geiger

Entrepreneur with a history of quickly generating profitable revenue streams at Startup, Software-as-a-Service and Fortune 500 companies including Pfizer and Black & Decker. David specializes in building and executing customer acquisition and business development systems proven to grow sales pipelines, generate revenue and retain customers. David pioneered the concept and launch of ePAY Healthcare, and he currently serves as Director of Corporate Development at ePAY where he is responsible for the identification, evaluation and development of corporate strategic initiatives.


Simon Wiltshire

Simon is an accomplished executive with a diverse background in multiple industries and functions. Building on his ten years at Accenture, Simon has held leadership positions in product development, product management, product marketing, technology operations and strategic partnerships. He’s also part-owner of his own small business and experiences daily the challenges of marketing and operational execution when you are the “Chief Everything Officer”. Simon has a particularly strong background in data-driven consumer marketing and its associated technology.