The Team

Our team is made up of seasoned operators with decades of combined experience founding and scaling SaaS companies

  • Michael Cardamone

    Managing Director & General Partner

    Michael was an early employee on the BD team at Box and more recently led BD and partner marketing at AcademixDirect.  He is an active angel investor and personally advises a number of startups. Michael has a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Syracuse University and a MBA from Columbia University.

  • Whitney Sales

    General Partner

    Whitney has 10+ years of startup sales experience and is the founder of The Sales Method, a consultancy that helps startups identify target markets, build successful sales teams and quickly get products to market.  She led four companies to the Inc. 5000 Fastest Growing Companies list including LoopNet, Joby, Meltwater and SpringAhead. Whitney graduated with honors with a BA in Sociology from UCSD.

  • James Murphy

    Entrepreneur in Residence

    James is the Co-Founder of Robly, a marketing automation platform based in New York City. He is an active angel investor and advisor to numerous early stage SaaS startups. Before starting Robly, he was a Vice President of Credit Trading at Barclays Capital. James graduated with a B.S. in Finance from Villanova University and lives in Brooklyn with his wife and son.

  • Jonah Midanik

    Program Director, Toronto

    An engineer by trade, Jonah has spent the last twenty years at the intersection of marketing and technology as a serial entrepreneur in Canada. Jonah has been lucky enough to have several different lenses on the founder journey from bootstrapping, to launched new corporate divisions, and raising 8 figures of venture capital. Jonah currently spends his time as founder and CEO of Limelight Platforms, and helping Canadian companies grow with Acceleprise.

  • Nina Stepanov

    Principal & Director of Partnerships

    Nina is a Boston to NYC transplant who joined Acceleprise from Techstars. She earned her SaaS stripes at companies like HubSpot, Intuit, and Embedly. She is an advisor to multiple tech and lifestyle brand startups as well as a contributor for VentureFizz on venture capital. Nina graduated Cum Laude with a B.S. in Business Administration from Northeastern University.

  • Akul Penugonda

    Associate and Head of Sourcing

    Akul is an East Coast native who joined Acceleprise from Yext, a large SaaS company in New York. He joined Yext after college and stayed through IPO. He has spent time in various positions in both Software Engineering and Product Management, and spends time volunteering in his free time. Akul graduated with a B.S. in Computer Science from Carnegie Mellon University.

  • Olivia O’Sullivan

    Associate and Head of Corporate Engagement

    Olivia is a Chicago native, now calling NYC home. She joined Acceleprise from Dow Jones where she managed business, product and innovation strategy across FinServ & Enterprise Tech clients. Olivia is a member of the Phi Beta Kappa Honor Society and graduated Magna Cum Laude with a B.A in English and Creative Writing from the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign.

Advisory Board

  • Nick Mehta

    CEO - Gainsight

    Nick is currently the CEO of Gainsight, a rapidly growing SaaS company that has raised over $100M in funding from top VC’s.  Prior to Gainsight, Nick was the CEO of LiveOffice (acquired by Symantec) and an EIR at Accel Partners.  Nick has made several angel investments in enterprise startups, including Hoopla, which has raised over $10M in venture funding.  Nick holds an A.B/S.M. from Harvard.

  • Rowan Trollope

    CEO - Five9

    Rowan is the CEO of Five9 and has spent 23+ years in various product and executive roles at Symantec and Cisco, where he was the SVP & GM of the Collaboration Technology Group at Cisco.  Rowan is an angel investor and advisor to several enterprise tech companies, and currently holds 7 patents.

  • Susan Kimberlin

    Former Director of Product - Salesforce

    Susan is an angel investor and startup advisor in San Francisco. Her background is in search and natural language processing technology and her operational experience spans product development roles from coding to product management at both startups and large companies like PayPal and Salesforce.  She is passionate about making connections and helping people meet their potential.  She believes that diversity is an essential and under-utilized asset to all businesses.  

  • Kerri Jankelow

    Head of Sales, Canada at Square

    Kerri is a passionate, results-driven sales leader with over 15 years of experience in the technology sector. She began her sales career at IBM and has since held various sales and leadership roles in tech organizations. She has built and led high performing sales teams for innovative companies like LinkedIn and Hired and now, Square. Kerri dedicates time to charity organizations with causes that are important to her like the Reena Foundation and CAMH.

  • Eric Dolan

    Venture Partner at SaaS Ventures

    Eric is an experienced entrepreneur, having built and sold a digital health company that scaled to hundreds of thousands of users and co-authored a paper setting data elements standards with academic and industry leaders. He works as a Venture Partner for SaaS Ventures, which provides capital to B2B, SaaS, and enterprise businesses in markets that traditionally don't receive the most venture capital. They believe exciting businesses and entrepreneurs will emerge from these markets and create the compelling companies of the future.

  • Bocar Dia

    Founder of Proxy AI

    Bocar is a technology entrepreneur and GTM leader who is passionate about building and scaling Sales from the ground up. He joined Hootsuite pre-revenue as part of the first sales team and went on to become a sales leader through the growth to $100M+, notably starting, building and leading the largest revenue region (NA East) and 100+ people office in Toronto. Bocar is now founder at Proxy AI, a stealth-mode startup solving one of the biggest challenges in sales.

Our Mentors

We have an amazing group of mentors: founders, executives and leaders of software companies, large and small. They have been through it all - and still volunteer their time to work with our founders, helping to shape the next generation of great SaaS companies. Want to become a mentor? Fill out the form here and we'll get back to you.


Founding Partners, DC Program

Acceleprise was originally founded in the nation’s capital by the three entrepreneurs below. We have since transitioned the accelerator to San Francisco, but the founding partners still act as critical advisors to the fund.

  • Sean Glass

    CEO of GBS Health

    In addition to founding Acceleprise in DC; Sean is an entrepreneur, investor, and believer in the power of people. He is the Chairman and CEO of GBS Health and previously founded the higher education focused online financial services firm, Higher One, where he served as founding president and then as part of the executive team as Chief Marketing Officer for 8 years. Higher One went public in 2010 (NYSE:ONE).

  • Allen Gannett

    CEO of TrackMaven

    In addition to founding Acceleprise in DC, Allen is the founder & CEO of TrackMaven, the Competitive Intelligence Platform for Digital Marketers. Prior to TrackMaven Allen was the founder & CEO of Splash Networks and then was the CMO of EmployInsight, which was acquired.

  • Collin Gutman

    Managing Partner - SaaS Ventures

    Collin is currently the Managing Partner at SaaS Ventures. In addition to founding Acceleprise in DC, Collin was the co-founder & CEO of WorkAmerica, which is the Linkedin for Skilled Trades.  Prior to WorkAmerica, Collin was the Chief Strategy Officer at EmployInsight and spent time with the Boston Consulting Group.