Council Members

The Oregon InC is responsible for developing a state plan for innovation and economic competitiveness. The plan is updated every biennium with a report to the Governor and Legislature every year. Council membership consists of 15 voting members appointed by the Governor and 5 non-voting members appointed by the Governor, Legislative leadership or prescribed in statute. Each voting member serves a three-year term, with the possibility of reappointment for two additional terms.

Voting Members

Jenn LynchJenn Lynch, Council Chair

Portland Seed Fund
Appointed April 2019
Term expires June 2021

Jenn Lynch is Managing Director at Portland Seed Fund, a pre-seed venture capital fund, where, alongside her two partners, champions traded sector startups based in the Pacific Northwest with a combination of investment capital, governance, and mentorship. Since 2011, Portland Seed Fund has invested in more than 100 high-growth businesses in industries including software, clean energy technology, medical devices, food & beverage, apparel, and more. Prior to Portland Seed Fund, Jenn spent a decade in software as a service as a product designer, product manager, and product marketer. She serves on a number of community boards including Oregon Public Broadcasting, Schoolhouse Supplies, and Business for a Better Portland. Jenn holds an MBA from Columbia Business School and a Bachelor of Science in Journalism from the Medil School at Northwestern University.

Bill BergBill Berg

Business Development Liaison, City of Beaverton
Appointed October 2020
Term expires June 2022

Bill Berg has over 35 years of business management experience ranging from startups to large international firms. In his current role as Business Development Liasion for the city of Beaverton, Bill is responsible for business retention, expansion, and recruitment assistance. He also serves on the board of OTBC, a non-profit incubator that helps entrepreneurs start and grow their businesses in Beaverton. Prior to joining city staff, Bill was the Americas Director of Consulting for Mentor Graphics, an Oregon-based high-tech company headquartered in Wilsonville. Bill has been involved in the local community as a member of numerous boards, commissions, and committees. Bill has been a member of the OR InC Audit Committee since January 2019 and currently serves as Chair of that committee.

Ann BunnenbergAnn Bunnenberg

President, Synergic Medical Technologies Inc.
Appointed July 2020
Term expires June 2023

Ann Bunnenberg has twenty-five years of experience in founding, leading and exiting medical device, healthcare and bioscience companies. Currently, she leads two companies in the biodmedical device space: Synergic Medical Technologies Inc. and CytoImage Inc. Synergic Medical Technologies Inc. provides non-invasive neuromodulation therapy for Parkinson's disease and Cytolmage Inc. focuses on single cell functional imaging for drug development and personalized medicine applications in cancer. Previously, Ann co-founded, made public, and successfully exited Electrical Geodesics Inc. (now Phillips Neuro), the company that pioneered the use of high resolution EEG systems in medical research applications. Ann serves as a board member for a variety of private and non-profit companies including WellRythms, InVivo Biosciences, and Accel. Ann is also a trained lawyer with a background in corporate, transactional, and commercial litigation.

Ben CannonBen Cannon

Higher Education Coordinating Commission

Ben Cannon is the Executive Director of Oregon's Higher Education Coordinating Commission (HECC) where he oversees state funding allocations, policy-setting, and coordination for Oregon's higher education system, including community colleges and public universities. Ben is a former teacher, state representative and education policy advisor to Oregon Gov. John Kitzhaber. He earned his BA from Washington University, St. Louis, and attended Oxford University, England, on a Rhodes Scholarship, earning graduate degrees in comparative and international education and philosophy, politics, and economics.

Sophorn CheangSophorn Cheang

Business Oregon

Sophorn Cheang (so-POHRN j-ay-ng) took the reigns as Director of Business Oregon in March 2021. Sophorn leads the agency in its work to help businesses and communities prosper in Oregon and see that economic opportunity is reaching each corner of the state. Prior to joining the agency, Sophorn served as the Director of the Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion for Governor Kate Brown since 2018. In this role she oversaw the development of state business policies to eliminate bias and barriers, and provided economic opportunities for all Oregon businesses through equity practices in state procurement and community economic development. Prior to her work with the Governor's Office, she served as Senior Community Development Manager and Director of the Asian Family Center for the Immigrant and Refugee Community Organization. Sophorn has an MBA from Willamette University and a bachelor's degree in finance from Portland State University.

Piper CrowellPiper Crowell

Global Director, IP-Privacy Policy & GPA, Nike
Appointed April 2019
Term expires June 2020

Piper Crowell specializes in digital and innovation policy as part of the Government and Public Affairs department at Nike Inc. Piper engages in the quickly evolving environment of online privacy, e-commerce, and cybersecurity regulations at state, federal, and global levels. Prior to joining Nike Inc., Piper worked at Pandora Media leading outreach to Congress and federal agencies on issues relating to streaming media platforms and online advertising and sales. During her time in D.C., Piper was actively involved in the technology community and was a board member of the Diversifying Tech Advisory Council. Piper was campaign manager for Congressman Jared Huffman's 2012 campaign and subsequently, Piper served as the Congressman's Legislative Director. Piper was a triple major at Amherst College and an All-American soccer player.

Corey FrazierCorey Frazier

Senior Technical Business Development and Operations, Intel
Appointed October 2020
Term expires June 2023

Corey Frazier is a technologist and philanthropist whose career trajectory spans engineering and leadership roles in space, supercomputing, and vision AI. He is a senior technical business development and operations leader at Intel focusing on delivering AI products at the edge. Prior to Intel, he worked in NASA's Space Shuttle Program for seven years as a lead engineer on 13 successful missions—including frequent missions to the International Space Station and the last mission to the Hubble Space Telescope. He has also done assignments in Intel Capital as a portfolio manager and as an associate Entrepreneur-in-Residence in ICAP's incubation program. Corey has a B.S. in Aerospace Engineering and a M.S. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Central Florida, a Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from Texas A&M University, and is a licensed Professional Engineer in Texas.

Peter Barr-GillespiePeter Barr-Gillespie, PhD

Chief Research Officer and Executive Vice President, OHSU
Appointed October 2020
Term expires June 2022

An accomplished researcher, Peter Barr-Gillespie, PhD, is a professor in the department of otolaryngology, an affiliated scientist with the Vollum Institute, and the chief research officer and executive vice president for OHSU. Dr. Barr-Gillespie has an active, well-funded basic science research program, the goal of which is to understand how the sensory cells of the inner ear, hair cells, detect mechanical signals like sound and head movements. Dr. Barr-Gillespie spent six years at Johns Hopkins University, before moving on to OHSU in 1999. He was named to his current role in 2019, where he oversees the research mission at OHSU, which exceeded $550 million during the 2020 fiscal year. His role is to provide research infrastructure and support, from fiscal management to shared instrumentation to long-term strategy. Barr-Gillespie received his BA in Chemistry from Reed College in 1981, and his PhD in Pharmacology from the University of Washington in 1988.

Juanita KurtinDr. Juanita Kurtin

Osram Opto Semiconductors
Appointed February 2020
Term expires June 2021

Juanita Kurtin is Director of Materials Research for OSRAM Opto Semiconductors. Prior to 2018, Dr. Kurtin was the CTO and co-founder of Pacific Light Technologies (PLT), an Oregon start-up company delivering high quality nanomaterials to the solid-state lighting and display markets in order to increase LED efficiency and brightness. She has a background in the research of nanomaterials for various device applications, including transistors, solar cells, and light emitting diodes. Prior to founding PLT, Dr. Kurtin was the VP of R&D at SpectraWatt, a solar cell manufacturing company, and also spent six years developing new device architectures at Intel. Dr. Kurtin obtained her BS degree in Chemistry from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and her PhD in Physical Chemistry from the University of California at Berkeley, studying with quantum dot pioneer Dr. Paul Alivisatos.

Kalpana MerchantKalpana Merchant, PhD

Founder President, TransThera Consulting Co.
Appointed October 2020
Term expires June 2022

Kalpana Merchant, PhD, is a neurobiologist who has led and contributed to the discovery and development of drugs for neurological and psychiatric disorders at start-ups and international pharmaceutical companies for nearly 30 years. She is the founder President of TransThera Consulting Co., which provides strategic and scientific guidance on drug discovery and translational strategies to biotech start-ups. Kalpana is also an adjunct professor of neurology at Northwestern University, a senior advisor to the Michael J Fox Foundation, and serves on several advisory boards and working groups at National Institutes of Health. She joined Oregon InC in 2020 and also serves on the board of OTRADI/OBI. Dr. Merchant received her PhD in neuropharmacology from the University of Utah, and completed postdoctoral training at University of Washington.

Dr. Nagi NaganathanDr. Nagi Naganathan

Oregon Tech
Appointed July 2018
Term expires June 2020

Dr. Nagi Naganathan is the President of Oregon Tech. During his time there, Dr. Naganathan has focused to extend the reach, recognition, and influence of the state's only polytechnic university. His leadership helped Oregon Tech secure a new engineering and technology facility for Oregon Tech. Several new partnerships and efforts have begun or expanded, including new corporate and higher education collaborations in Oregon and across regional borders. Prior to joining Oregon Tech, Dr. Naganathan served as the dean of the College of Engineering at The University of Toledo (UT) for over 15 years and was the founding chairperson of the Mechanical, Industrial and Mechanical Engineering department. He also spearheaded industry partnership work that led to a mandatory co-op program for students to work within the private sector while earning their engineering degrees.

Soundharya NagasubramanianSoundharya Nagasubramanian

Welch Allyn

Soundharya Nagasubramanian is the Beaverton Site executive for Welch Allyn—a Hill Rom company. She is a Director in R&D and a strong technical leader in software architecture and cybersecurity. She has a track record in building and retaining high performance teams and bringing new products to market efficiently. As a site lead, she has worked to create strategic alliances between Welch Allyn and other organizations including OHSU to provide innovative solutions for healthcare. As an Oregon Bioscience association board member and a board member of Oregon's Workforce and Talent Development Board, she is happy to contribute towards building and retaining talent in Oregon.

Chad OlneyChad Olney

Pacific Crest Federal Credit Union
Appointed July 2018
Term expires June 2020

Chad was raised on a rural Oregon farm. He went on to earn a BA in Management and Organizational Leadership from George Fox University and an MBA from the Atkinson School of Management at Willamette University. At 23, he purchased his first business, a floundering health club. By the age of 27, he had owned three businesses and was leading a small, rapidly growing corporation while serving as vice chair of a credit union board. The culture of that organization was so inspiring it changed his career path. At the ripe old age of 31, Chad became CEO of Pacific Crest Federal Credit Union. Pacific Crest has been headquartered in the Klamath Basin since its founding in 1936.

State Treasurer Tobias ReadTobias Read

Oregon State Treasurer

Tobias Read was elected Oregon's 29th State Treasurer in 2016. Prior to that, Read served in the Oregon House of Representatives where he championed legislation to invest in public education, improve state financial management, finance critical infrastructure improvements, and worked to help Oregonians save for a more secure future. He earned his bachelor's degree from Willamette University and his MBA from the Michael G. Foster School of Business at the University of Washington.

Brent WilderBrent Wilder

Oregon Alliance of Independent Colleges and Universities
Appointed June 2019
Term expires June 2022

Brent Wilder is currently the interim president of The Alliance (Oregon Alliance of Independent Colleges & Universities). Prior to his appointment in October 2019, he served as vice president of The Alliance. Wilder joined The Alliance after working with the Oregon Independent College Foundation (OICF), most recently as interim president and vice president. Prior to his arrival at the OICF, Brent served as the Associate Director of Athletics for External Relations at Portland State University. His previous professional experience also includes serving as an Assistant Director of Athletic Development and Athletic Annual Fund Director at Oregon State University, and Assistant Men's Basketball Coach at Oregon State. A native Oregonian, Brent has been actively involved in professional and civic activities at the local and national level throughout his career. Brent received his bachelor's degree and M.A. from Oregon State University.

Non-voting Members

Sen. Fred Girod, Senate Republican
Sen. Betsy Johnson, Senate Democrat
Rep. David Gomberg, House Democrat
Rep. Christine Drazan, House Republican
Kanth Gopalpur, Business Oregon Commission Chair

Technical Advisors

Sucheta Bal, ProsperPortland
Bill Berg, City of Beaverton
Gina Maria Bonini, Tektronix
Dan Dorsa, Oregon Health & Science University
Gordon Hoffman, Northwest Technology Ventures
Joe Janda, Portland State University
Andrea Klaas, Port of the Dalles
Mark McClellan, Portland State University
David McFeeters-Krone, Intellectual Assets Corp
Cass Moseley, University of Oregon
Bill Newman, Northwest Technology Ventures
Irem Tumer, Oregon State University