Stephen joins Arizona FORGE as our first Executive-in-Residence, where he applies nearly forty years of experience to help UArizona students, community entrepreneurs, and corporate members of FORGE. Most recently, Stephen served as the Vice President, Strategic Business Initiatives, at the University of Arizona, where he focused on improving the university’s engagement with the private sector. Prior to that he served as Vice President, Economic Development and Technology Ventures, Executive Director of the Enterprise Innovation Institute at his alma mater, Georgia Tech, and Director of the Advanced Technology Development Center (ATDC).
Stephen is active in the “alternative space” industry; he is an investor in twelve private aerospace companies and is a founding member of the Space Angels Network. He is the founder and chair of the Arizona Space Business Roundtable. He also maintains a consulting business at Boostphase. Stephen served on the boards of the Arizona Technology Council, the Technology Association of Georgia and of Culture Connect, a not-for-profit fostering cultural fluency between immigrants and the community at large.
An Atlanta native and fifth-generation Georgian, Stephen began his career as an Associate Member of Technical Staff at AT&T Bell Laboratories in 1979 while still a student at the Georgia Institute of Technology. While at Bell Labs, he published some of the first experimental data regarding single-mode optical fiber splicing. After graduating from Georgia Tech in 1983 with a 4.0 average in theoretical physics (valedictorian, summa cum laude), Stephen joined Northern Telecom, which was then one of the leading optical fiber manufacturers in the world. Stephen then went on to work with LICOM, a venture-backed startup before joining Alliance Technology Ventures, an early stage VC firm in Atlanta. From there he returned to his Georgia Tech to assist Georgia enterprises improve their competitiveness through the application of science, technology and innovation.