Adjunct Lecturer - Entrepreneurship Hour
Lecturer - Project Management and Consulting
Lecturer - Entrepreneurs Leadership Program (co-lead)
Lecturer - Entrepreneurial Marketing | Lecturer - Organizational Management of Startups
Adjunct Lecturer - Innovation for Impact: Climate Change (co-lead)
Lecturer - Patent Law
Tiffany Fidler joined the Center for Entrepreneurship as a lecturer in 2016 and teaches patent law. She is an actively practicing, registered patent attorney. Her practice focuses on counseling clients ranging from Fortune 100 companies to startups on intellectual property matters, including domestic and foreign patent procurement, and coordinating international patent portfolios. She also counsels clients regarding patentability investigations, infringement and freedom to operate analyses, and the negotiation and preparation of various intellectual property agreements, including licensing agreements and joint development agreements.
Tiffany Fidler is a three-time alumna of the University of Michigan College of Engineering, and she received her doctorate in Mechanical Engineering with a focus in the thermal fluid sciences and an interdisciplinary thesis in combustion and materials science. She was a recipient of the National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate Fellowship.
After graduating and prior to law school, she was an Assistant Professor of Mechanical Engineering at Drexel University for three years where she established a laboratory conducting federally funded research and taught courses in the thermal fluid sciences and engineering design sequences.
Education: PhD, Mechanical Engineering, University of Michigan | MSE, Mechanical, University of Michigan | JD, Wayne State University | BSE, Mechanical, University of Michigan
Lecturer - Intro to Venture Capital
Adrian Fortino is an experienced founder, operator, engineer and investor in the industrial technology sector. He leads the Ann Arbor office and the Intelligent Manufacturing practice at Mercury Fund. Adrian sits on the Board of Directors of Sight Machine, a manufacturing analytics company based in Michigan. He also co-chairs the Catapult Program powered by the Community Foundation of Southeast Michigan.
Prior to Mercury Fund, Adrian was the Managing Director of Detroit Innovate and the First Step Fund based in Detroit, Michigan. He also co-founded three software companies: Shepherd IS, a fleet management software company, Sidecar, the first US-based instant rideshare company, and Flocktag, automated marketing software company for retailers and restaurants.
He also spent several years at Ricardo Inc. Ricardo is a global engineering consultancy focusing on the automotive, cleantech, military and industrial sectors. He was an engine combustion and emissions specialist and led several advanced engine and hybrid powertrain development projects. He left as the Manager of Powertrain Development division which encompassed P&L, engineering and global project responsibilities.
Education: MBA, University of Michigan | BSE, Mechanical, University of Michigan
Lecturer - Interpersonal Skills
Adjunct Lecturer - Entrepreneurship Hour Discussion
Committed to enhancing the academic experience for U-M students, Christine is involved in collaborative program and project management of curricular and co-curricular entrepreneurial offerings at both the graduate and undergraduate levels.
Christine is a liaison and mentor for students enrolled in CFE’s courses and programs. She contributes to robust student experiences via curriculum development for undergraduate and graduate ENTR courses, the management of CFE’s instructional community, and by curating impactful study abroad and startup ecosystem Discovery Trek experiences. She has been central to CFE’s cornerstone offering, the Entrepreneurship Hour Speaker Series & follow-on ENTR 417 for many semesters. Christine’s professional background is in education.
Education: MA, Curriculum and Instruction, San Diego State University | PGCert, Educational Leadership, Oakland University | BS, Education, Eastern Michigan University
Lecturer - Finding Your Venture (co-lead)
Brian works at HeatSpring, a renewable energy training company he co-founded in 2007 as an MBA student at Babson College. HeatSpring is a community of nearly 80,000 solar, geothermal, and green building providers and was named one of the “Top Social Entrepreneurs” by Business Week Magazine.
Brian is a founder of the Ann Arbor, Grand Rapids, and Evanston based fitness technology company, ShapeLog . He helped find product-market fit and lead through the company’s Series A financing.
Recently, Brian started “Redesigning the End” an education platform and podcast focused on the decisions we face at the end of our lives. He received his BBA from the University of Michigan and his MBA from Babson College.
Education: MBA, Babson College | BBA, University of Michigan
Lecturer - Entrepreneurship Practicum (co-lead) | Lecturer - Intro to Innovation
John is a tech entrepreneur, engineer, and educator. His previous companies have focused on tutoring services and online education products, primarily for STEM fields and standardized exams. While he has moved on from these endeavors, he’s been lucky to continue teaching at the University of Michigan in a broad array of subjects: genetics, physics, computer programming, and now entrepreneurship.
Currently, John is CEO of Elegus Technologies, a spin-out from the University of Michigan commercializing nanotechnology that can enable safer, longer-lasting batteries.
John’s formal training is in engineering and entrepreneurship; he’s received a Master’s in Biomedical Engineering as well as Master of Entrepreneurship (MsE) degree, both from U-M. The latter degree was from a program jointly administered by the University of Michigan’s College of Engineering and Ross School of Business.
Education: MSE, Biomedical, University of Michigan | Master in Entrepreneurship, University of Michigan | BSE, Biomedical, University of Michigan
Lecturer - Entrepreneurs Leadership Program (co-lead) | Entrepreneurship Practicum (co-lead)
Grace is passionate about impact-driven entrepreneurship and innovation. Grace Hsia is the Co-Founder and CEO of Warmilu, a warming medical device company. She applied her materials science and business expertise at Warmilu to make warming blankets and packs available to infants born in resource-scarce settings. Warmilu’s electricity-free Incublankets are now warming over 8,000 infants born to 33 hospitals in 12 countries. She has built corporate and NGO partnerships with partners including Doctors Without Borders, P&G, Rotary Club, NEST360, and the US Air Force. Prior to founding Warmilu, Hsia served as an operations excellence engineering supervisor at UPS and senior project manager at the $1.6 million First Customer Program at the University of Michigan Economic Growth Institute. She is passionate about sharing lessons learned at Warmilu, UPS, and launching two new programs at the U-M advising 200+ advanced tech startups. She has raised funding from private and public sources, totaling almost $1.477M. Hsia is a graduate of the University of Michigan with both a Bachelor of Science in Materials Science and Engineering and a Master of Entrepreneurship.
Hsia’s work has been recognized by Forbes’ 30 Under 30, US Manufacturing Institute’s Emerging Leaders, Crain’s Detroit’s Notable Women in Manufacturing and 20 in their 20s, WeWork ‘s Creator Awards Global Finalist and Creator Awards Launch Awardee and many others. She has had the honor of presenting Warmilu to the United Nations and UNICEF. Hsia firmly believes in giving back to the community. She now serves on the U-M College of Engineering Alumni Board and continues to give back through mentoring startups and students with optiMize, YLAI, and other associations like the Wayne State University World Student Health Alliance.
Education: Masters in Entrepreneurship, University of Michigan | BSE, Materials Science, University of Michigan
Lecturer - Innovation for Impact: Defense and Security
Todd joined the Center for Entrepreneurship in 2019 and teaches the course Innovation for Impact: Defense & Security. He is a serial founder and retired U.S. Navy Captain, currently serving as Chief Executive Officer of Nahsai, Inc, an advanced materials and manufacturing start-up accelerating the transition of research technologies for both commercial and national security applications. Todd is also founder and Chairman of Cattellyst Foundation, a non-profit social venture that forms and supports collective impact enterprises in communities around the world that have confronted extreme poverty for generations. Todd was selected as a 2019 Presidential Leadership Scholar, based on the impact of his work.
Todd has over 24 years of military service as a fighter pilot, test pilot, unmanned system instructor, and acquisition program manager, founding several enduring impact organizations within the DoD. Todd’s academic background includes a Bachelors in Aerospace Engineering from the U.S. Naval Academy, a Masters in Aeronautics and Astronautics from Stanford University, and an MBA from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He also has a Master of Health Services Administration from the University of Michigan.
Education: MSE, Aeronautics and AStronautics, Stanford | MBA, Massachusetts Institute of Technology | MHSA, University of Michigan | BSE, Aerospace, United States Naval Academy
Lecturer - Finding Your Venture (co-lead)
Michael began his BIGGBY COFFEE life in 1996 as a barista at Store 1, and shortly thereafter, he and his co-founder developed the franchise concept for BIGGBY COFFEE. Of the Home Office, Michael says, “The culture is supportive, growing, dynamic, progressive, and limitless. As community we are collectively in charge of the culture, and we all know that we can improve and change the culture, and we are all committed to doing so.”
He is proud to say that BIGGBY is selling tens of thousands of cups of coffee each day, and is building a healthy, awesome, thriving organization . Michael has a passion for entrepreneurship and business start-up. He is the author of GRIND, believing that entrepreneurship is one of the most powerful ways to add value to any community.
Education: BS, Economics, Kalamazoo College
Lecturer - Entrepreneurship Practicum (co-lead)
Lecturer - TechLab: Mcity (co-lead)
Lecturer - Entrepreneurial E-Commerce
Rishi Narayan is an entrepreneur and early-stage investor based out of Ann Arbor, MI. Rishi has founded several companies, including Underground Printing, a national custom apparel and collegiate merchandise retailer with locations throughout the country. He is a principal in the angel funds Chibor Angels and Miniseed, focusing on seed and early stage investments. In 2015, Rishi became a co-owner of AFC Ann Arbor, an elite amateur soccer club competing in the United Soccer League, a farm system for Major League Soccer. Most recently, Rishi founded Podcasts United, a collective of local podcasts, and is the host of I Am Ann Arbor, a podcast about the stories and people of Ann Arbor and the UofM community.
Education: MSE, Chemical Engineering, University of Michigan | BSE, Chemical Engineering, University of Michigan
Intermittent Lecturer - Innovation and Intellectual Property Strategy
As founder and managing shareholder of Quinn IP Law, Chris has built a full service intellectual property law firm representing a diverse mix of clients from Fortune 100 companies to tech start-ups.
Chris's early career included research and engineering work at the U-M Physics Department, General Motors and Ford. His early legal career included stints at the Wisconsin Supreme Court, Ford Global Technologies Inc, and multiple law firms before launching Quinn IP law in 2002 as a solo practitioner and growing it to a team of 37.
Having partnered with, invested in, or worked in-house with many clients, Chris understands the challenges involved in developing, marketing, and protecting unique products, and employs a holistic approach when working with clients to strategically manage and capitalize upon their intellectual property assets. Chris’ passion for his profession and desire to make a positive impact on his community led to the formation and growth of Quinn IP Law into a nationally renowned intellectual property service provider. His firm offers comprehensive intellectual property solutions, from patent prosecution, to infringement/validity opinions, portfolio strategy, licensing, litigation support, trademark and copyright protection and enforcement, and expert witnessing.
Chris has teamed with numerous innovators in developing IP and business strategies to achieve a market advantage and drive business growth. As an investor and advisor in many tech start-ups he has achieved significant successes as well as hard-earned lessons from failures. Chris appreciates the importance of strategically targeted, economical IP strategies and offers alternative flat-fee arrangements to help clients adhere to budgetary demands. Understanding the financial pressures faced by in-house counsel and startups inspired Chris to build a successful system which provides exceptional IP quality economically. This system earned Quinn IP Law the #5 law firm ranking in the US based on patent allowance rate and time allowance in the areas of manufacturing, transportation, e-commerce, medical devices, and others.
He is an honors graduate of the University of Michigan College of Engineering and the University of Wisconsin Law School.
Chris and his wife Karen also run a nonprofit which supports poverty-stricken Native American communities.
Education: JD, University of Wisconsin Law School | BSE, Mechanical, University of Michigan
F. Andy Seidl
Lecturer - Digital Product Design
Andy is a serial entrepreneur, software innovator, and technology business advisor with more than 30 years of experience. Andy founded two software development tool companies, SCE, Inc. (software version control) and Genitor Corp. (C/C++ CASE/re-engineering), each of which was later acquired by public companies. He also founded and funded MyST Technology Partners, Inc., which for 10+ years, provided advertorial marketing blogsites to more than 500 SMB customers. MyST also provided RSS infrastructure services to Fortune 500 companies such as Intel and Verisign.
He has created dozens of commercial software applications, tools, and services for a wide range of markets. Many garnered awards and accolades from industry analysts, reviewers, and press. His software runs in corporate data centers, software development organizations, scientific organizations, embedded systems, application servers, device firmware, home automation controllers, and personal PCs.
Andy has served as president, VP of engineering, chief architect of emerging technologies, chief information architect, technology evangelist, chairman, board member, technical advisor, venture capital fundraiser, product manager, product architect, and software engineer. He has extensive experience as a contract negotiator (software licensing, OEM licensing, company/technology acquisitions, etc.) and as a technical due diligence analyst in connection with M&A and fundraising activities.
He holds a B.S.E in Computer Engineering from the University of Michigan where he also did graduate studies in compiler construction, AI, robotics, and real-time systems. He completed a condensed MBA course for executives from Pepperdine University. Andy is passionate about building software to last, playing guitar, mountaineering, backpacking, hiking, running, and critical thinking.
Education: MBA, Pepperdine University | BSE, Computer Science, University of Michigan
Professor - Innovation for Impact: Climate Change (co-lead)
Volker Sick is the DTE Energy Professor of Advanced Energy Research and an Arthur F. Thurnau Professor at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. He leads the Global CO2 Initiative at the University of Michigan that aims to reduce atmospheric CO2 levels by transforming CO2 into commercially successful products using technology assessment, technology development and commercialization. His teaching focuses on experiential experiences in a laboratory course, Techlab Climate Change, and the International Engineering Summer School at TU Berlin.
Prof. Sick served as Faculty Advisor to International Programs in Engineering (2006-2012) and led the development of the International Minor for Engineers, the first Minor offered by the College of Engineering. As Associate Vice President for Research (2012-2018) he oversaw the development and launch of Mcity. He also established and led the Michigan Translational Research and Commercialization (MTRAC) Hub for Advanced Transportation. He held multiple leadership roles with SAE International and served as Editor of the Proceedings of the Combustion Institute for 12 years. His research in automotive powertrains connected fundamental physics and chemistry to practical implementations in tight collaboration with local industry.
Sick earned a Diplom (Masters) and Dr. rer. nat. (PhD) in Chemistry and Habilitation in Physical Chemistry from the University of Heidelberg, Germany.
Education: PhD, Chemistry & Habilitation in Physical Chemistry, University of Heidelberg - Germany | Masters, Chemistry & Habilitation in Physical Chemistry, University of Heidelberg - Germany