Council on Entrepreneurship
Our Mission is to nurture innovation and entrepreneurial thinking and practices among Florida State University faculty, staff, students, and our community partners.
The Council on Entrepreneurship’s purpose is to support the university's focus on entrepreneurship by: Advising university leadership on the Entrepreneurial University Initiative; Promoting student success both in and out of the classroom; Working cooperatively in creating entrepreneur activities on and off campus; Collaborating on external funding opportunities; Actively engaging with external stakeholders.

Jonathan Adams

PhD, College of Communication and Information, School of Communication
Phone: 978.226.8834

Jonathan has owned and operated several small businesses full-time, totaling 20 years experience. He continues to have a strong interest in small business development and entrepreneurship, business planning, new technologies and project management. He played a role in starting the The Dandi's awards for small business & startups (Board of directors & VP of technology) and currently serves as a mentor for Domi Station, a local small business incubator. He has mentored numerous startup events and organized a Startup Weekend (Tallahassee), and several 3-Day Startup events at Florida State University. Jonathan has a special interest in interactive software design, software development and software programming. He holds a PMP certificate from the Project Management Institute, and in that capacity has led (lead developer / software engineer) production teams for more than 150 software projects. His work has been recognized with more than a dozen awards (industry & academic conferences) for technical achievement and innovation in educational software design categories. During his employment with FSU, has been a principal investigator for 2.5 million dollars in federal grants and more than 200 thousand dollars in contracts from non-profit or federal agencies. He currently teaches ICT Entrepreneurship; Usability and Website design; Social Media Uses and Practices; Desktop Multimedia.

Ken Baldauf

MS, Director, Program in Interdisciplinary Computing
432 DIF
Phone: 850.645.8649

Ken Baldauf joined the Florida State University faculty in 1998 to coordinate a campus-wide computer literacy effort. Since then Ken has developed courses in computer fluency, management information systems, digital media, object-oriented programming, web design and web development, with enrollments in his classes growing to over 2,500 students per semester. He developed one of the first online courses at FSU in 1998, and has been devoted to developing effective online teaching systems and methods ever since. Ken is currently the Director of FSU’s Program in Interdisciplinary Computing where he works with colleges and departments across campus to determine what computer and information technology skills and knowledge are needed in their disciplines, and provide courses to meet those needs. Ken has authored several textbooks, produces a weekly tech news podcast for tech teachers, and has designed the online learning framework for Intro Computer courses titled Emerge with Computers. In recnt months Ken has been actively researching innovation frameworks and innovation centers with plans to bring the benefits of this research to institutions of higher education. Find out more about Ken at

Richard M. Benham

JD, College of Law
Entrepreneur in Residence
Roberts Hall, Room 238
Phone: 850.644.6075

Professor Benham joined the College of Law in spring 2014 as Entrepreneur in Residence. He directs and teaches in the Business Law Clinic, where enrolled students can earn academic credit for advising business and social entrepreneurs at Florida State University. Prior to earning his law degree, Professor Benham had extensive experience in the information technology field and co-founded a software development consulting company where he served as chief executive for seven years. Admitted to the Florida Bar in 2005, he has counseled many small businesses in areas including entity formation, capital acquisition, business planning, and start-up business operations. Professor Benham has substantial experience with commercialization of university intellectual property and has assisted several faculty inventors with business start-ups. His projects include co-founding a business developing software for the nano-materials industry and a start-up fabricating magnet system components for the global fusion reactor project (ITER). Professor Benham started a non-profit foundation that worked on election integrity by developing open source voting system software. Most recently, he co-founded a non-profit "maker space" that provides an open creative space for students, inventors and artists.

Randy Blass

PhD, Director, Jim Moran Institute
217 RBB
Phone: 850.644.3372

F. Randy Blass is currently the Executive Director of the Jim Moran Institute for Global Entrepreneurship and a Jim Moran Professor of Entrepreneurship in the College of Business at Florida State University. Additionally, he is the Executive Director of the College's Entrepreneurship Bootcamp for Veterans with Disabilities (EBV) program and the Center for Veteran Outreach (CVO). He is also a Senior Research Fellow in the Institute for Veterans and Military Families (IVMF) and recently served on the Small Business Administration’s Council on Underserved Communities. Blass is also a 25 year veteran of the USAF with extensive operational experience in training and development and tactical and strategic planning.

John Breed

MBA, College of Business, Department of Entrepreneurship, Strategy and Information Systems
Entrepreneur in Residence
145 RBB
Phone: 850.645.0905

John has extensive experience in management, professional sales, product development, business consulting, supply chain management and corporate finance. Before coming to Florida State, he was involved in multiple industry segments and was a corporate officer for a firm in the small to medium market and a management consultant at a major consulting firm. He also launched, managed and sold several businesses in which he was an equity partner with profit and loss responsibility. His experience and focus is primarily centered on startups, digital commerce, management and business development.

Mark Cross

CMB/MBA, College of Business, Dedman School of Hospitality
Entrepreneur in Residence
4132 UCB
Phone: 850.645.1950

Mark teaches Catering Management, which is affiliated with the Ashley Stiff Dinner Series, and International Food and Culture. Cross is a certified master baker and an assistant in hospitality at the Dedman School of Hospitality. Before coming to Florida State he was program director of Kaiser University’s Baking and Pastry Arts Associate of Science Degree Program. He is co-owner, president and financial officer of Tasty Pastry Baker Inc., a family-owned bakery.

Jim Dever

PhD, College of Business, Department of Entrepreneurship, Strategy and Information Systems
Entrepreneur in Residence
Rovetta Business Building room 253
Phone: 850.644.7894

Jim brings a wealth of practical entrepreneurial experience to Florida State University, having owned and operated many successful businesses during his 20 year entrepreneurial career. Those businesses included trucking companies, motels, restaurants, a construction company and other assorted ventures.

Mike Devine

PhD, College of Engineering, Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering
Entrepreneur in Residence
Engineering A-248B
Phone: 850.410.6378

Mike has been a tenured professor of Industrial Engineering for 20+ years, Directed an interdisciplinary research program Science and Public Policy, was Associate VP for Research at FSU (including starting and running the technology transfer program and negotiating a license agreement that generated $350 million in royalties), Vice Chancellor for Research at U. of Tennessee, Knoxville, Executive Director of two cancer research and educational foundations in Tallahassee, and Executive Director of FL CURED, a state-wide center housed in the FSU Medical School to promote biomedical research throughout Florida.

Jeffrey Edell

College of Motion Picture Arts
Entrepreneur in Residence
A3100 UCA
Phone: 850.644.7728

Jeffrey Edell has worked extensively throughout the U.S. and abroad, and in both the public and private sectors. Mr. Edell has successfully completed mergers and exit deals on behalf of a number of private and institutional investors. During the past year, Mr. Edell has been providing consulting services to a variety of entities spanning a multitude of markets including: film production, film finance and distribution, new media, mobile, e-learning and edutainment. Mr. Edell serves as the Entrepreneur in Residence in the College of Motion Picture Arts and provides film students with the opportunity to receive instruction from, and engage in regular one-on-one meetings with, a highly regarded and successful entrepreneur in the media industry.

Susan Fiorito

PhD, College of Business, Entrepreneurship, Strategy and Information Systems Department
Entrepreneur in Residence
325 RBB
Phone: 850.644.7856

Dr. Susan S. Fiorito is a Jim Moran Professor and Chair of the Entrepreneurship, Strategy and Information Systems Department in the College of Business. She has been a faculty member at FSU since 1990. She was an owner of apparel, leather goods and turquoise jewelry stores in Atlanta, GA and owner of a wholesale leather goods company until 1980. In addition to teaching at FSU she has also taught and conducted research at the University of Iowa, Florida International University and the University of Stirling in Scotland where she taught graduate level courses and developed a module for their Executive MBA program. Dr. Fiorito’s research focuses on retailing, small business management and buying and has been published in a variety of academic journals. In addition, she is the co-author of a book on Retail Buying published by Prentice Hall. She was appointed to the Board for the Florida Retail Federation in 2003 and has served faithfully since that time. Dr. Fiorito contributes to many university, college and department committees and was elected as the President of the Faculty Senate in 2015.

Ron Frazier

MBA, College of Business, Department of Entrepreneurship, Strategy & Information Systems
Entrepreneur in Residence
140 Rovetta
Phone: 850.556.1897

Ron Frazier is responsible for the capstone course in the College of Business – Competitive Dynamics, an online business simulation. Ron previously taught new venture financing, commercializing new technologies and new venture planning. Ron is currently a student in the BioDesign Graduate Certificate program at Stanford University. He is also an Executive-in-Residence at Moffitt Cancer Research Center. Prior to joining Florida State University, Ron served as Executive Vice President for three different billion dollar, global technology consulting firms.

Bob Garner

MBA, College of Business, Entrepreneurship, Strategy, and Information Systems
Entrepreneur in Residence
416 RBA
Phone: 850.591.4778

Garner has more than 19 years of personnel and industrial management experience. He has directed and coordinated financial, physical and human resources in public and private businesses. Garner won the Leadership Award for contributions to personnel development and profits for Roadway Express Miami Terminal. An expert in franchising, he built three Hardee's Restaurants in four years, and employed more than 100 people with approximately $2.5 million in sales. Currently, Bob is teaching elective classes that accompany the entrepreneurship major and minor. He teaches a class on franchising, negotiation, and managing growth. Bob is a former Hardees franchisee who owned 3 stores in Arkansas from 1994-1999

MK Haley

MFA, College of Fine Arts
Entrepreneur in Residence
3020 WJB
Phone: 412.889.9814

Mk Haley has been with The Walt Disney Company since 1994 serving primarily with Walt Disney Imagineering in both technical and creative roles with the Virtual Reality teams, R&D, Special FX, Show Quality Services, and the Disney Research Labs. These teams allowed support of projects with a 10 year lead time, to critical in-park issues that needed immediate solutions. Mk has also served Disney Corporate initiatives related to New Technology programs and collaboration tools, as well as Disney Digital Media initiatives with their Television Groups. She has been an educator for 20 years teaching at both the high school and University level, including the Imagineering – UCLA partnership in Themed Entertainment Design, and recently served as both the Associate Executive Producer and Faculty at the Entertainment Technology Center at Carnegie Mellon University. With more than 25 years of service to ACM SIGGRAPH, Mk more recently served as the SIGGRAPH 2013 Conference Chair, and as the Themed Entertainment Association’s SATE Conference Technology Track Chair for 2013 & 2014. Entrepreneur in Residence working in an exciting new informal area of study focusing on Environmental Storytelling. This area will be open to all students within the university and is a flexible model that can respond to industry trends and easily incprorpate multiple disciplines in collaborative projects. The intent is to draw the most talent and take advantage of the strongest speciality programs and individuals and allow them to work together.

Timothy Kinney

MBA, College of Business, Entrepreneurship, Strategy, and Information Systems
Entrepreneur in Residence
502 RBA
Phone: 850.645.0027

Tim Kinney spent 28 years with IBM in various engineering, sales and management roles while teaching as an adjunct. After retiring from IBM, he participated in the start-up of several new businesses before joining Florida State University in a full time role in 2011. Tim teaches 4 courses per semester in the Strategy and Entrepreneurship area. He is also the faculty advisor for the Case Competition Club, where the students learn to think critically and solve real business problems. He hosts 2 case competitions on site, and brings teams of students to compete in national and international competitions. Critical Thinking Initiative Fellow and E-Series Fellow

Ryan Kopinsky

PhD Candidate, College of Engineering, Center for Intelligent Systems, Control, and Robotics (CISCOR)
Student Entrepreneur

Ryan, originally from Suriname, South America, started his entrepreneurial career with TechNole, the first recognized student organization at Florida State University focused on making computer programming a social and interdisciplinary experience. In addition to being the founder of TechNole, he is also the co-founder of Shop X, Tallahassee’s Innovation District and TechTLH. Ryan is currently a PhD Candidate in Robotics at Florida State University, and is the recipient of the FSU Legacy Fellowship. As part of his research, Ryan has worked on state-of-the-art technology including the NASA-IHMC X1 Exoskeleton. Most recently, Ryan founded AddedLayer, a startup focused on Crafting Impactful Products. To learn more about Ryan Kopinsky, visit

Bruce Manciagli

MS, College of Social Sciences and Public Policy
Social Entrepreneur in Residence
W226 BEL
Phone: 850.645.87112

Bruce's career has focused on building the capacity of individuals, organizations, and communities through education and training, leadership and organizational development, as well as strategic funding and resource development to more effectively address social and environmental problems and create lasting social value. He hase a long-standing commitment to Social Entrepreneurship and Innovation, having co-founded two social enterprises and provided leadership for initiatives promoting innovative approaches to education, environmental issues, mental health and trauma, access to health care, civic engagement, youth leadership, community development, community safety and preparedness, and fair trade. Bruce has helped raise and has granted millions of dollars aimed at creating social value in Florida. He has worked at the local, state, and international levels (including having lived/worked in five continents) and have a strong interest in intercultural leadership and collaboration.

Chris Markl

MA, Center for Undergraduate Research and Academic Engagement
Social Entrepreneur in Residence
3002B HSF
Phone: 850.645.0967

Chris Markl serves as the Social Entrepreneur in Residence in Florida State University's Center for Undergraduate Research and Academic Engagement. Chris also coordinates the University's Social Entrepreneurship and Innovation Initiative. As a social entrepreneur, Chris founded Kourage Athletics. Kourage leverages the storied tradition of Kenyan runners to create authentically Kenyan running apparel. Kourage sold products to over 20-countries, was featured on CNN and worked with Olympian medalists. Chris also founded and led two-cross country bicycle rides, which raised over $120,000 for international charities. Outside of entrepreneurship Chris has worked as an economic analyst in emerging economies. Chris's experience varies from building a monitoring and evaluation system in the middle east to working in textile factories in Latin America.

Christine Nieves

MS, College of Communication and Information
Entrepreneur in Residence
LSB 106D
Phone: 703.945.2966

Christines goal is connect students and faculty with the Tallahassee community, and beyond so that together we can all reach our entrepreneurial potential in the region and the state. Her responsibility is to communicate a unified definition of entrepreneurship that is appealing to students in all disciplines, particularly students in the College of Communication and Information. Other responsibilities include: Connecting students with high quality opportunities in Tallahassee where they can generate deliverables that can better prepare them for an entrepreneurial career. Guiding students to resources such as scholarships, fellowships and grant opportunities. Designing activities and events and communication materials that will become vital to the social capital in Tallahassee where students and community people can come together and tackle big problems a la "think global, act local". Representing CCI and FSU in external speaking engagements about entrepreneurship, social impact and social innovation. Christine hosted a TV show and an online webcast - one was Charlie Rose style, the other more Colbert Report style. She loves public speaking, emceeing and moderating panels and discussions. She is passionate about reinventing how we make breakthrough discoveries to benefit humanity. The old way of doing things, is just that, the old way. To generate breakthroughs we must learn how to systematically manage and capture the chaos of ideas and design a discovery environment and system that is open, inclusive and collaborative. Oh, and Spanish is her first language!

Joe O’Shea

PhD, Director, Center for Undergraduate Research and Student Engagement
3002A HSF
Phone: 850.645.8118

Joe O'Shea serves as the Director of Florida State University's Center for Undergraduate Research and Academic Engagement and is an adjunct faculty member in the Department of Philosophy. He received a BA in philosophy and social science from Florida State University, where he served as the student body president and a university trustee. A Truman and Rhodes Scholar, he has a master’s degree in comparative social policy and a Ph.D. in education from the University of Oxford. Joe has been involved with developing education and health-care initiatives in communities in the United States and Sub-Saharan Africa. His research and publications are primarily focused on the civic and moral development of people, and his recent book, Gap Year: How Delaying College Changes People in Ways the World Needs, was published by Johns Hopkins University Press. Joe serves as the president of the board of the American Gap Association and as an elected councilor for the Council on Undergraduate Research , the leading national organization for the promotion of undergraduate research and scholarship.

Stan Pelkey

PhD, College of Music, Associate Dean for Community Engagement and Entrepreneurship
Entrepreneur in Residence
214 KMU
Phone: 850.644.4296

Stan Pelkey is the Associate Dean for Community Engagement and Entrepreneurship in the College of Music at Florida State University. In that role, he is charged with providing leadership for public relations and marketing in the College, managing guest residencies, and guiding efforts in entrepreneurship education in the undergraduate music program. A seasoned educator and scholar, Stan completed the M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in Historical Musicology at the Eastman School of Music, and the M.A. in European History at the University of Rochester. Before joining the FSU community, he served as Dean of the School of Liberal Arts and Sciences at Roberts Wesleyan College where he led the development of several new degree programs designed to meet growing student interest and need in the region, and he created and hosted a series of workshops with alumni employed in the Rochester business community that emphasized opportunities for humanities students in the public sector. He also built new college-community partnerships, re-launched and grew a dual enrollment program with four area high schools, and secured new opportunities for music students to perform in the community. Stan's primary interests lie in career development, risk taking, and risk management for music students, and rethinking the arts and humanities in response to current market pressures and changing priorities and policies in higher education. He remains active as a performer, composer, and researcher, and he blogs about career development for musicians and film and television music at

Wendy Plant

MBA, College of Business, The Jim Moran Institute
Entrepreneur in Residence
RBB 117
Phone: 850.645.2711

Wendy's responsibilities include oversight of The Jim Moran Institute’s student business incubator, InNOLEvation® Accelerator, and management of all student activities outside of the classroom, including competitions, events and programs. She coordinates The Jim Moran Institute’s contributions to campus-focused entrepreneurship activities, providing assistance and consulting services to students and coordinating student activities on and off campus for the College of Business. Prior to coming to Florida State in 2014, Wendy was program manager at the University of South Florida’s Polytechnic Blue Sky Business Incubator and USF CONNECT Tampa Bay Technology Incubator, where she gained extensive experience in business incubator management and educational program development. Wendy's areas of interest include counseling student entrepreneurs and helping them get the resources they need. Organizing programs and events to supplement entrepreneurship activities in the classroom.

Qinchun Rao

PhD, Human Sciences, Nutrition Food & Exercise Sciences
Assistant Professor and Entrepreneur in Residence
434 Sandels Building
Phone: 850.644.8215

Dr. Qinchun Rao has a Ph.D. in Food and Nutrition from Florida State University. His research interests lie in utilizing food chemistry, especially immunochemistry and physical chemistry, as a tool to answer questions arising in both food safety and food quality disciplines. His research related to food safety primarily focuses on the development of rapid methods for the detection of harmful or prohibited substances in food products such as undeclared allergenic food residues (AFR). His research related to food quality primarily focuses on studying 1) the fundamental mechanisms and external factors influencing the interactions of proteins and other ingredients in foods and 2) the bioavailability of nutrients and bioactive components in foods.

Cesar Rodriguez

MD, College of Medicine, Department of Biomedical Sciences
Research Faculty I and Entrepreneurship Advocate
1350B MSR

Cesar is a member of the research faculty in the Department of Biomedical Sciences at the College of Medicine. His focus is cell engineering and cell-based therapeutics. Prior to rejoining FSU in 2015, Cesar engaged in intrapreneurial and entrepreneurial efforts in the San Francisco Bay Area. This included working as a Senior Research Scientist at Autodesk, Research Lead at Genome Compiler, and Software Lead at BIOFAB (a joint Stanford-UC Berkeley translational project). Cesar is a co-founder and former editor of the Synthetic Biology Open Language (SBOL). Since 2009, He has advised several teams that have participated in and also has served as a judge for the International Genetically Engineered Machines (iGEM) competition. Cesar advocates for the perspective that biological engineering requires excellence in empathy, curiosity, and ingenuity.

Doug Tatum

MBA, College of Business, Department of Entrepreneurship, Strategy & Information Systems
Entrepreneur in Residence
147 RBB
Phone: 850.6447846

Doug serves as chairman of the board for Newport Board Group, a national partnership of CEO’s and senior executives who advise emerging middle market companies and assist private equity firms to invest in and grow portfolio companies. He is immediate past chairman of the board of the Association for Corporate Growth (ACG), a global not-for-profit organization with 58 Chapters and 14,000 members in the US and internationally, representing middle market private capital investors, intermediaries and the middle market deal community. Doug also serves as the advisory board chairman for the Institute for Exceptional Growth Companies, a national research institute-funded by the NASDAQ Foundation and the University of Wisconsin - Extension. Its mission is to study exceptional growth companies, the capital markets, and their impact on employment and economic growth. Previously, Doug was chairman and CEO of Tatum LLC, which grew into a highly respected national professional services firm with 30 offices and more than 1000 professionals and employees. The company was sold to Spherion in 2010. Prior to his role with Tatum LLC, Doug served a number of companies as a senior executive and/or board member. Doug is a recognized expert on the capital markets and the entrepreneurial growth economy. He has testified before the U.S. Congress about the financing challenges growing companies face and about U.S. tax policy. He has been keynote speaker at the Securities Exchange Commission Forum. Doug speaks extensively throughout the world, presenting the research and frameworks included in his book No Man’s Land: Where Growing Companies Fail. The book, published in the U.S. in 2007, has received four national Best Business Book awards and has been published in China, Taiwan and South Korea and is slated for publication in Vietnam. The book was included in the recently updated edition of The 100 Best Business Books of All Time by Jack Covert and Todd Sattersten. Doug’s insights about rapid growth companies, private equity and the capital markets have been cited in hundreds of media outlets including Inc. magazine, The Financial Times, and the New York Times online. Tatum is an alumnus of Florida State University, where he received his Bachelor of Science, magna cum laude, and Masters in Accounting.

Raymond B. (Vic) Vickers

PhD, College of Criminology and Criminal Justice, Institute for the Prevention of Financial Fraud
Entrepreneur in Residence
210A Eppes Hall

Dr. Vickers, whose background includes a law degree and a Ph.D. in economic and business history, served for four years as Assistant Comptroller of Florida, the Chief of Staff of the Florida Department of Banking and Finance. As an attorney, he has represented more than 100 financial institutions, including community banks, regional banks, Wall Street banks, and international banks. He is also the author of Panic in the Loop: Chicago’s Banking Crisis of 1932, which won the Silver Medal in the 2012 Independent Publisher Book Awards for the Finance/Investment/Economics Category;and Panic in Paradise: Florida’s Banking Crash of 1926.

Trip Wyckoff

University Libraries
Entrepreneur in Residence
0027K Strozier Library
Phone: 850.645.1475

Trip serves as FSU's Entrepreneurial Outreach Librarian, providing research assistance to faculty and students starting businesses. Additionally, library research and tools to support Entrepreneurs-in-Residence, Deans, and administrative units of FSU. The Entrepreneurial Outreach Librarian helps to identify and arrange with other library liaisons new items for the library's collection targeting “entrepreneurship.” The Entrepreneurial Outreach Librarian also provides support for local and regional business support institutions (like the public library, DOMI Station, SBDC, and EBV for veterans)



  • Randy Blass (Chair)
  • Jonathan Adams
  • Richard Benham
  • Bruce Manciagli
  • Wendy Plant
  • Stan Pelkey
  • Trip Wyckoff

Campus Initiatives

  • Chris Markl
  • Wendy Plant


  • Christine Nieves (Chair)
  • Vic Vickers

Entrepreneurship Curriculum/Student Programs

  • Jim Dever (Chair)
  • Susan Fiorito
  • Bob Garner


  • Ken Baldauf (Chair)
  • Chris Markl
  • Christine Nieves
  • Cesar Rodriguez