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Victoria Silchenko, Ph.D. is the founder and CEO of Metropole Capital Group which she launched in 2004 in Los Angeles, CA. Victoria has led numerous independent business consulting projects, determining the most effective business models and successful financing strategies for start-ups, VC-backed companies and emerging businesses in a broad range of industries such as digital media and entertainment, high-tech, alternative energy and carbon credits trading, IT/SAP consulting, wholesale and telecommunication throughout the U.S. and Russia/Europe. Her previous experience includes analytical positions at the Milken Institute (a leading Southern California economic "think tank" founded by Michael Milken), and at the Laffer Investments when she worked directly with Dr. Arthur Laffer (inventor of "Laffer Curve" and a former economic advisor to President Reagan). Victoria is also the chair of Global LAVA group, a strategic interest group of Los Angeles Venture Association, the oldest and one of the most recognizable business associations in Southern California. Under her leadership, Global LAVA has evolved into a preeminent forum of international entrepreneurship and foreign direct investment for the entire greater Los Angeles area and beyond. She is also a writer and contributes to the Huffington Post and LA Business Journal on the subjects of entrepreneurship, venture capital, angel investing and global crowdfunding.

Victoria's team organizes and produces the annual Next Generation Entrepreneurship and Crowdfunding Forum which is a unique and exclusive gathering of world class entrepreneurs, angel investors, VCs, accelerators, and crowdfunding experts and advocates from the United States and all over the globe: www.metropoleglobal.com.

Victoria is a frequent speaker at numerous seminars and international conferences including Association of Corporate Growth (www.acg.org), LAVA (www.lava.org), Horasis: The Global Visions Community (www.horasis.org) and others. 

Victoria holds an MA degree in Economics and Finance from the State University of Demidov and a Ph.D. in Economics from the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration.

Advisory Board

David Carter is currently a co-founder of Amplify – a leading accelerator in greater Los Angeles area. He is a serial entrepreneur and angel investor with the investments including: Cerberian (sold to Blue Coat, NASDAQ BCSI), Zorch (sold to First Consulting Group, NASDAQ FCGI), Oakley Networks (funded by Kleiner Perkins, sold to Raytheon, RTN, NYSE), Medsource -Domo (funded by Benchmark and IVP), CrimeReports (funded by Austin Ventures), Celtek -Hyphos (now At The Pool), Caplinked (funded by Peter Thiel), StyleSaint (funded by Andreessen Horowitz), Shape Security (funded by Kleiner Perkins), Ecomom (funded by Tony Hsieh), and Invested.in – a leading company based in LA which provides a technology for crowdfunding platforms.  David Carter served as founder, President & CEO of Vertical Technologies (sold to Zebra (NASDAQ, ZBRA)), Thoughtstar (sold to iManage (NASDAQ, IMAN)) and S5 Wireless. In addition, Mr. Carter served as an EIR for Wasatch Ventures Fund (now Tomorrow Ventures).

Mr. Carter has spoken at numerous industry events and has been quoted in major publications including Financial Times, Forbes, Business Week, Washington Post, Motley Fool, TechCrunch, and many others.

Forbes recently named David Carter as one of the “12 Entrepreneurs that are Changing LA Forever” as part of Amplify.

Mr. Carter received a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science from Weber State University.

Paul Thurman, Ph.D. has extensive management consulting and line management experience assisting a variety of Fortune 500 firms. Professor Thurman has held senior positions at Booz Allen Hamilton and American Express, and has served public and private sector clients on five continents. His consulting work has focused mostly on analytical modeling to support strategic planning and decision making, corporate cost management, and technology and business integration. He has also developed solutions around customer segmentation, demand modeling, profitability, and experience mapping.

Professor Thurman has taught core courses in decision, risk, and operations in the full-time and Executive MBA Programs at the business schools of Columbia, London, and University of California, Berkeley. He also teaches strategic management and data analysis courses at Columbia's School of International and Public Affairs and at its Joseph L. Mailman School of Public Health. Professor Thurman is a recipient of a teaching award from Columbia Business School. Presently he runs a general management and executive education consultancy and is a frequent conference presenter and workshop facilitator.

Professor Thurman received his BS from Stanford University and his MBA from Columbia University.

Rodi Rozin has extensive experience in business development, mergers and acquisitions, corporate reorganizations, business integrations and project management. He is currently a Director at Henry Schein, Inc., a Fortune 500 company specializing in the distribution of medical products and technology worldwide. Prior to joining Henry Schein, Mr. Rozin played a key role in the Chapter 11 reorganization of Goss International, a worldwide manufacturer of printing press systems, and advised clients on mergers and acquisitions at PricewaterhouseCoopers Securities.

Mr. Rozin received his BA in Economics & Mathematics from Columbia University and MBA with Honors from Columbia Business School.

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