Dennis Fernandez, Chair
Dennis has over twenty-years experience in Silicon Valley and High-Tech Industry, as a patent prosecutor and intellectual property litigator, a venture capitalist, and an engineering manager. He specializes in developing offensive and defensive patent strategies for start-up electronics, software and biotech companies and their investors.
Dennis serves as strategic advisor to leading venture capital firms, including Sevin Rosen, Venrock, Charles River Ventures, and Walden International. Representative clients include Marvell Technology, SiRF Technology, Ayala Corporation, Stanford University, and Northwestern University, as well as various start-up companies acquired by Cisco, Broadcom, Ciena, and Cadence Design Systems.
He also serves on the Editorial Board of the Nanotechnology Law & Business Journal, the Board of Directors of the Association of Patent Law Firms, and the Science and Technology Advisory Council. Previously Dennis served on a consultancy with the United Nations Development Programme on Asian economic development.
Dennis is also an inventor of several U.S. and international patents in the areas of digital television, sensor networks, and bioinformatics. He has an Electrical Engineering degree from Northwestern University, a law degree from Suffolk University Law School, and is a Registered U.S. Patent Attorney.
Christina Laskowski, President
CHRISTINA LASKOWSKI serves as a strategic advisor and management consultant to consumer and technology companies. Her background includes 16 years as a boutique investment and M&A banker where she helped raise more than $2.0 billion serving more than 100 clients; and three years in equity research as a member of the founding branded consumer research team at Hambrecht & Quist, one of the original premier boutique investment banks in San Francisco.
Currently, Ms. Laskowski also serves as President of STAC (Science & Technology Advisory Council) Silicon Valley, a 501(c)3 focused on driving economic growth in the Philippines and US through holistic entrepreneurship. After a fulfilling career in investment banking, Christina engaged the reigns full time and in 2009 transformed STAC SV to a strategic advisory organization with proprietary services. She presented a five year strategic plan to the Philippine President in 2010 outlining steps to cultivate the entrepreneurial ecosystem. Her leadership was instrumental in creating a collaborative community of stakeholders resulting in a country wide movement to support tech entrepreneurs at the local level and the launch of the first three tech angel funds in the country in 2012.
Christina is also an active member of the community. She serves as an advisor to The Hinabi Project, an advisory board member to USF’s entrepreneurial program and led the most successful College Night program for NUSD in Marin County. Previously, Christina was regional board member to Women’s Initiative for Self Employment, a non-profit focused on transitioning women from welfare to self –employment.
In 2010, the Philippine President presented Christina with the Golden Heart Award, Rank of Grand Officer. The same year she served as a Balik Scientist (return Scientist) awardee of the Philippine Dept. of Science & Technology. In 2011, FWN recognized her as one of the “100 Most Influential Filipinas” in the United States.
Jojo Flores, Vice President
JOJO FLORES is our ON3 Leader and our “Clemenza”, the most loyal, dedicated and dependable Right Hand of theGodfather’s character Don Corleone. One could say that the Philippines is his Godfather and he serves it well.
Jojo joined STAC SV’s board in 2010 and was instrumental in forging the strategic relationship with Plug and Play Tech Center in Sunnyvale where he serves as a co-founder and VP, Operations. Plug and Play is a leading accelerator in Silicon Valley that provides proprietary services including University Programs and VC events to its 300+ international and local start up community. Plug and Play is also the destination where our national ON3 business pitch competition winners will have a chance to immerse themselves for three (3) months. In addition to Jojo’s senior operational skills with PnP and STAC SV, you will note that he is an avid golfer, talented singer and a successful entreprenuer having built a profitable business in the Philippines which was subsequently sold to a leading beverage company.
Katrina Montinola, Secretary
KATRINA MONTINOLA is our chief engineer, talent officer and serial entrepreneur. She has an eye for engineers and a unique skill to get them to work seamlessly which we hear is quite a challenge. She serves as VP, Engineering at Archimedes and is responsible for the software implementation of the Archimedes Model. Katrina joined Archimedes in November of 2006 and built the Software team, which consists of an Architect, Software Engineers, Quality Assuarance Engineers, Product Managers, and IT/Desktop Support Engineers. The Software team’s goal is to transform the model into an industrial strength Internet application. Prior to Archimedes, Katrina held senior management positions at Agile Software, ChemConnect, E-Stamp, PointCast and Oracle. She is a named inventor on two (2) software patents.
Estella Luluquisen, Treasurer
ESTELLA LULUQUISEN is our treasurer and analytical operations specialist. She has over 16 years of hands-on experience with start-up companies and currently serves as co-COO of Integrated Home Systems.
Estella’s career focus is working with small business, start-up companies, and entrepreneurs. In 2000, she relocated to the Lake Tahoe region to open an incubator during the dot com boom for a ‘retired’ Silicon Valley entrepreneur and a real estate developer. The dot com bubble burst and plans for the facility diminished. She remained in the area and honed her operations skills while working with a home automation company from inception to its ten year anniversary where she managed its growth through the expansion and contraction of the real estate market. Currently, she leverages her skills by advising and mentoring entrepreneurs who are in the early stages of the start-up lifecycle. Early in her career she worked in Silicon Valley for various technology start-ups ranging from e-learning, customer relationship management, and internet service provider. Estella holds a M.S. in Operations Research from Stanford University and a B.S. in Business Decision Science with a minor in Economics from the University of San Francisco.
Denny Roja, General Counsel
Denny Roja leads the Silicon Valley practice of Carr McClellan, a boutique law firm based in Burlingame, California. As a corporate lawyer, his practice is focused on corporate transactions for emerging growth companies, including mergers & acquisitions, strategic partnering, venture capital financings, corporate finance, intellectual property licensing, as well as advising technology startups across a wide spectrum of matters.
Denny Roja’s law practice is enhanced by his years of experience in venture capital and investment banking. He is a deal maker at heart and has enjoyed leading, negotiating and consummating M&A deals, technology licensing, corporate finance, private equity and venture financings thus significantly contributing to clients growth and profitability. A significant mark is his ability to balance legal risks with business objectives to get deals to close successfully. Prior to joining Carr McClellan, Denny served as Managing Partner of Venture Law Partners where he provided general counsel services to emerging growth companies. He currently serves as general counsel of Smart Orbis, Inc., an Internet of Things security company and iSenseCloud, a cloud company that combines the power of sensors, data mining and data analytics to detect impending failures in infrastructures.
Denny was recently managing partner and general counsel of Acuity Ventures, an early stage venture capital fund which invested primarily in web-based software. Prior to that, Denny was managing director for a Silicon Valley-based investment banking firm that provided corporate financial advisory and mergers & acquisition services to technology firms. He was also previously head of mergers & acquisitions for two Fortune 50 companies — General Foods where he managed the successful acquisition of Entenmann’s Baked Goods, Ronzoni Italian Foods and Oscar Mayer Corporation — and Pacific Telesis where he played a key role in its mobile telecom and wireless acquisitions. Denny’s international experience includes serving as a legal and strategic advisor to Olympus Corporation of Japan and Wells Fargo’s Asian strategic business unit.
He is a fellow of American Leadership Forum, a board member of the Philippine Development Foundation, the Stanford University Buck Cardinal Club, the Science and Technology Advisory Council (STAC Silicon Valley), and the Association for Corporate Growth (ACG) of San Francisco. He has been inducted in the Stanford University Alumni Multicultural Hall of Fame
Mr. Roja holds a J.D. from Fordham University School of Law, an M.B.A., Stanford University Graduate School of Business, an M.S. Chemical Engineering from University of Washington and a B.S. Chemical Engineering, summa cum laude, from University of Santo Tomas. He has been an NSF Fellow in Industrial Engineering at Georgia Institute of Technology.
Angela Cheng, Board Member
Angela advances nanoscience at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech), combining atomically precise DNA origami with silicon lithography as a part of the Molecular Programming Project. She is dedicated to creating a thriving and resilient society through sustainable technologies. She worked with computational physics and precision measurement at NASA, Agilent, and Sandia before joining a $130m fund as a technology research analyst. In tracking how disasters impacted supply chains, she championed cleantech alternatives leading to investments in SSDs, LEDs, and smart grid synchronization infrastructure. She previously served on the nanotechnology team at a patent law firm, leading to involvement in the Philippines technology ecosystem as the founder is STAC’s chairman. She has participated in Philippine based initiatives, immersed entrepreneurs in Silicon Valley accelerators, and hosted public and private leaders for educational business development tours.
Angela studied physics, economics, classics, and materials science at Stanford, where she probed the nanoscale, reassembled Greco-Roman pottery, and coded virtual realms. She also taught science summer camps and managed online courses. At Singularity University’s Global Solutions Program she used satellites to monitor the environment. Her first venture Blue Can has prepared over half a million people for disasters with FEMA and is a social business recognized as a CleanTech Open Semifinalist. She practices yoga and is a certified instructor, organized events as president emeritus of Stanford Young Alumni, and has lived/worked in Europe and South America.
JR Calanoc, Board Member
Community and Events Officer
JR is CEO of Panalo Solutions, a San Francisco-based startup that looks to bridge the gap between Philippine talent and global markets. Panalo’s developers and marketing specialists, who are located in the Philippines, work with small businesses internationally to help them grow. Additionally the company’s in-house incubator, Panalo Labs, focuses on building apps and software to help drive growth in the Philippines.
JR is a graduate of University of San Francisco where he majored in Economics. He loves adventure and is a long time scuba diver, Ironman finisher, as well as a private pilot.
Lieza Danan-Leon, Board Member
Beryl Chavez Li
Founder and CEO of CapchainX
Prior to founding CapChainX, a revolution to capital structure and corporate management through smart contracts on the blockchain, Beryl was an Entrepreneur In Residence at Coins.ph, a leading venture backed payments startup in Asia. Aside from managing teams, whe was involved in early stage tech investments with SeedAsia based in Shanghai. She was Senior Consultant and author of the Philippine Roadmap for Digital Startups, a project initiated by the Department of Science and Technology-ICT office. Her experience also includes FX Quants Consulting at Blackrock, London backtesting trading algorithms with a team.
Beryl holds a Bachelors degree in International Business, Finance and Economics from Manchester University, a Master of Finance degree from Cambridge University and an International Management Certificate from Stanford University.
Her Interests include the blockchain, captial markets and startups. She enjoys traveling, yoga, books and food.
COO and Co-Founder, Align Commerce
Aldo is the Founder and COO / CTO of San Francisco based Align Commerce, a next generation replacement for outdated wire and telegraphic transfer systems. Align uses the blockchain and its proprietary multi-rail systems to change the way global cross border payments are done – making the process simpler, faster and more transparent to over 60 countries. Some of the company’s investors include Kleiner, Perkins, Caufield, Byers (the same venture capital responsible for Google, Twitter, Amazon, Uber, Waze, Slack and SnapChat among others), Silicon Valley Bank Ventures, Recruit Strategic Partners, and NYCA Investment Partnership LP (led by Hans Morris, former President of Visa and Max Levchin, founding CTO of PayPal).
Prior to founding Align, Aldo was the Founder and CTO of Jukin Technologies / Jukin Media – one of the world’s largest User Generated Content (UGC) payments and licensing platforms with over 35 billion global views, 50 million platform shares and over 10 million active contributors and subscribers in 221 markets. Jukin is currently being used by some of the world’s largest television networks and production companies including ABC, BBC, CBS, Comedy Central, CNN, Discovery, ESPN, FOX, HBO, MTV, NBC, TruTV, Vh1, and hundreds of other websites, and platforms throughout the world. Jukin’s main properties include FailArmy, JukinVideo, People Are Awesome, the Pet Collective, World’s Funniest on FOX and That’s Funny! on UK’s Channel 5. Samsung Investments, Bertelsmann Digital Media Investments Inc., Launchpad LA, and Maker Studios are some of Jukin’s lead investors.
Aldo is a serial entrepreneur, angel investor and technology disruptor. Prior to Jukin, he founded a number of ventures in global B2B matchmaking, international trading / finance and business process outsourcing. Aldo has an MBA in Entrepreneurship from Babson and degree in Psychology from Ateneo De Manila University.