We celebrate our different backgrounds and situations along with our shared values.
Director of Merchandising
Heather has worked in the retail industry for 20 years at companies such as Williams-Sonoma and Gump's in San Francisco. Most recently, she was part of the team that launched the marketplace at Houzz. When she isn't working, Heather wrangles her twin boys through their toddler years.
Director of Content
Rebecca is a writer, editor and writing coach, volunteer patient advocate and former attorney. She has worked in retirement, employee benefits and compensation law and consulted for businesses and nonprofits large and small, strategizing tone and creating multi-channel messaging for diverse stakeholders. Rebecca is a devoted dog and daughter mom.
Email Marketing Associate
Nile comes to Amava with over 7 years of email marketing experience in which he specialized in curating relevant, personalized and engaging customer experiences garnered through detailed email reporting and analytics. Raised in Brooklyn, NY, Nile has a passion for both city and outdoor adventures such as staying fit and researching the latest marketing trends.
Director of Engineering
A 10+ year veteran of the startup technology world, Samantha is an accomplished full-stack engineer and conference speaker. Her passions include writing clean code, building sustainable remote teams, and empowering other women in tech. She is a proud resident of Chicago and owned by two dogs and a cat.
Director of Finance
Katie's early years in public accounting were at Deloitte, and she has since held senior finance roles at a number of technology ventures. Katie has also worked as a Backcountry Wilderness Ranger in Mount Rainier National Park and continues to pursue her love for the outdoors by helping manage the nonprofit she co-founded, Canopy Cat Rescue.
Candace is all about the content. She’s had diversified career experience and strengths in internal communications, editing/proofreading, short and long form content creation, project management, social media, blogging, and newsletter creation. In her spare time, Candace just happens to be a Karaoke Queen.
Curriculum Writer and Guide
Annie has years of experience writing, editing, teaching and life coaching. She’s written articles, an e-book and study guides. A certified Life Coach, Annie believes learning to embrace change with a positive perspective is one of the most powerful ways to experience personal growth, and she loves helping others define, pursue, and achieve their goals.
Executive Vice President
Kim has over 20 years of experience in legal and business operations in the technology industry. Prior to that she was involved with philanthropy. After managing a successful acquisition, she briefly tried early retirement only to discover she missed the interactions and sense of accomplishment she had working. Kim also manages 4 children, 10 dogs and two horses.
Founder and CEO
Mark has spent most of his 25-year career building and advising technology and life sciences companies, most recently as Managing Director of Catamount Ventures, a venture capital fund principally focused on early stage, mission-oriented companies. Mark devoted three years to researching the link between longevity and social engagement and co-founded Amava to help Members find their paths.
Board of Directors
Robbie Kellman Baxter is the founder of Peninsula Strategies LLC, a management consulting firm, as well as the author of “The Membership Economy: Find Your Superusers, Master the Forever Transaction & Build Recurring Revenue,” a book that has been named a Top Five Marketing Book of the Year on Inc.com and the Chartered Management Institute. She coined the popular business term “Membership Economy”.
Adam Boyden is a Managing Director at RPM Ventures, a seed and early stage venture firm that focuses on investing in early stage technology-enabled B2B and B2B2C Enterprise Solutions & Marketplaces. The firm is a recognized leader in several focused sectors, including mobility, automotive, enterprise software, financial services, insurance and real estate. Adam is a five-time entrepreneur who has helped lead venture capital-backed companies that have disrupted multi-billion dollar industries and generated more than $2 billion in exit value.
Before joining RPM Ventures, Adam was a co-founder and CEO of Openlane (acquired by KAR Auction Services), and the vice president of business development and marketing at Xfire (acquired by MTV Networks). Additionally, he served as president of Conduit, a cloud-based user engagement platform that he helped grow into the most successful Internet company in Israeli history. He also led RPM’s investment in Social Finance (SoFi), ultimately joining SoFi’s team as Chief Operating Officer as the company began to scale.
Prior to all of this, Adam was the founder and general manager of the China Consultancy, an advisory firm to companies entering the Chinese market. Adam holds a first-class honors bachelor’s degree in engineering science from Exeter University and an MBA from Stanford University. He lives in Seattle, Washington with his wife and two daughters.
John Laing has a 40-year history in the technology industry, having held senior management positions with industry leaders in multiple markets including content discovery with Inxight; security with Symantec; desktop operating systems with Apple; and document printing with Xerox.
While serving as the Executive Vice President of worldwide sales for Symantec from 1989-1997, John managed revenue growth from $15 million to $750 million and orchestrated high-profile acquisitions, which helped to advance the company to its current successful position. As President and CEO at Inxight, John was instrumental in a company turnaround, growing revenue by 65% and expanding its worldwide channels. He also served as CEO of Reactivity, a provider of XML-enabled networking solutions. In less than a year he restructured and positioned the company for sale to Cisco for $135 million.
Throughout his career, John has raised money from respected venture institutions including Vantage Point Venture Partners, Accel Partners, Sequoia Capital and Reed Elsevier Ventures, among others. John served on numerous boards including Macromedia, Workshare and Job Train, a non-profit organization in Silicon Valley.
Arnold Silverman established Discovery Ventures, a venture capital firm focused on early-stage investment in software companies with market leadership potential in emerging technologies. Some of Discovery's most notable investments include: Informatica (NASDAQ: INFA), Kiva Software (acquired by Netscape), Epiphany, and TimesTen Performance Software (acquired by Oracle). He currently serves as a Director of Delphix Corp and on several private company boards.
Prior to Discovery Ventures, Arnold was CEO of ICOT Corporation and President of Dymo Industries. He was a Founding Board Member at Oracle and Business Objects. He was the Founder and Founding Chairman of Informatica. He served as a Director of Jaspersoft Corporation, Exemplary Software Inc., Valchemy, Inc., (formerly MAE Software, Inc.), Nishan Systems Inc., QUIQ, Promptu Corporation, Nucleus Partners LLC, and E-Intelligence Inc. (now known as eiVia, Inc.).
He was a Member of the Advisory Board at iRise Inc. Arnold served as the Chairman of the American Electronics Association (AeA). He was a past Board Chair of the UC Berkeley Foundation, a member of the Board of Visitors, and on the Bakar Fellows Advisory Committee, at UC Berkeley. He is a member of the Stanford Distinguished Career Institute Advisory Board. Arnold Silverman received his B.S. and M.S. in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from UC Berkeley and holds an MBA from Columbia University.
Mark is the founder of Amava. He devoted three years to researching the link between longevity and social engagement and started the platform to help Members find a better path and provide businesses with a turnkey engagement solution for members, clients, customers and employees.
Mark’s Venture Capital career includes co-founding Catamount Ventures, where he focused on early stage technology companies within the enterprise, infrastructure and energy markets. At Catamount, Mark led investments in and served on the boards of a number of leading companies. Prior to joining Catamount Ventures, Mark spent more than 18 years working with early stage technology and life sciences companies. Most recently, Mark co-founded and served as President and CEO of Bocada, Inc., where Mark led the company from inception to an early market leader in enterprise data protection management.Prior to Bocada, Mark was Vice President, Business Development and Health Services and General Counsel for drugstore.com where he was responsible for building key relationships with ecommerce and healthcare industry leaders, as well as managing the company’s pharmacy, health services and legal operations.
Prior to drugstore.com, Mark was a Partner at Venture Law Group in Menlo Park, Calif., after starting his career at Davis, Polk & Wardwell in New York, N.Y.
Mark holds a J.D. from the University of California at Los Angeles and a B.A. in History from the University of California at Berkeley.
Roy Ackner has over thirty years’ experience in healthcare management, working for both healthcare providers and insurers. Roy is the President of RA Healthcare Consulting, LLC, and has provided strategic consulting and network contracting services to healthcare entities such as: Visiting Nurse Services CHOICE Medicare, VillageCare Max, Lenox Hill Hospital, Wyckoff Heights Medical Center, Four Seasons Nursing Home and many others. Roy has held senior management positions with Aetna, Visiting Nurse Services, Heritage Health Systems and Wellcare.
After trying out retirement, Roy followed his passion for retirement planning and coaching and worked as a Financial Representative, passing his Series 7 Exam and Insurance Sales Licensing Exam at age 64. One of Roy’s credos is “You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.” C.S. Lewis. A die hard lover of New York City, he lives in Manhattan with his wife Nancy. He has his MPA in Healthcare Administration from New York University.
Peter Andruszkiewicz (Peter A) is an accomplished healthcare executive with extensive leadership experience including roles as CEO and president of Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island (BCBSRI) and president of Kaiser Foundation Health Plan of Georgia. He also served in executive positions at Blue Cross Blue Shield of the National Capital area (now CareFirst Blue Cross Blue Shield), and CIGNA HealthCare.
He is currently an operating partner at Empactful Capital, a venture capital firm focussed on early stage, tech enabled health care companies. Peter’s career has been dedicated to creating collaborative models in search of disruptive, positive change in the ways providers work together to deliver health care, the way care is financed, and enabling a new kind of engaged, activated healthcare consumer.
Sal DeTrane co-founded Empactful Capital with a penchant for strategy, growth planning and operational execution. He has over 20 years of experience in business development, organizational development, operations and finance roles.
Sal has a passion for working with entrepreneurs that stems from starting multiple ventures and gaining over 12 years of direct P&L and operational experience at MedeAnalytics – the nation’s largest privately held healthcare analytics business. As its #2 executive, Sal played a keystone role in driving Mede’s revenue growth in both the hospital and payer markets. This market/product strategy led to Mede’s growth from $3 million to over $120 million in revenues. Thoma Bravo acquired Mede as it prepared for its IPO in 2015. Sal founded Nucleus Partners (a venture capital firm) in 2001 and lead its investment in Mede prior to joining the company. Prior to Nucleus, Sal co-managed nearly $50 million of committed capital at The Angels’ Forum after successfully building a technology investment banking practice in Silicon Valley.
Bolstered by a history of developing and managing relationships across the healthcare ecosystem, Sal sits on the boards of several early/growth stage healthcare IT companies. An unapologetically proud Temple Owl, Sal serves on the Dean’s Advisory Council for the Fox School of Business and holds the honor of having spoken to his experiences and his views of entrepreneurship at the Fox School of Business. His hobbies include winemaking.
Joan is a former attorney who has worked in the private and non-profit sector. She has served on the board of several nonprofits, and is the co-founder of the Preeclampsia Foundation.
She is a Certified Retirement Coach and has spearheaded the curriculum development of Amava’s popular Designing Your Next series. She also mentors college students, and is a long-term volunteer in her community’s schools, recently serving two terms as an elected School Board Member. A product of the California public school system, having attended UC Berkeley and UCLA Law School, Joan is devoted to principles of equity in education, with a particular focus on public schools as engines of long-term social change.
Amy Yotopoulos joined the Stanford Center on Longevity in January of 2015 and serves as Director of the Mind Division. She has over a decade of experience in rigorously researching the aging mind and body, developing innovative new businesses focused on the senior market, and in direct service and hands-on caregiving to mature elders.
In addition to her previous roles at Stanford, at AgeWave, and as the Director of the Avenidas Senior Day Health Center in Palo Alto, she has served on the Advisory Council for the Silicon Valley Council on Aging in Santa Clara County and the Association for Senior Day Health. She holds a B.A. in Psychology from Stanford University with Honors, and received both an M.S. in Gerontology and a Masters in Health Administration from the University of Southern California.