Meet Our Startup Advisors and Mentors



Meet Our Startup Advisors and Mentors

All About the People Behind Our Thriving Business Community

Providing startup funding to the next entrepreneur is only part of what we do. At our core, we are mentor capitalists who are passionate about the people behind our thriving business community here in Portland and Greater Oregon.

At Elevate, our team of startup advisors and mentors come from diverse backgrounds and industries, and offer a wealth of expertise. We all had mentors who set us on individual paths of success. Now we’re giving back to our community by offering ongoing mentorship to help companies grow and develop.



Nat Parker, CEO- Moovel, TiE Charter Member

Nat oversees the development of cutting edge software solutions to improve urban mobility with exceptional teams in Portland and Austin who are working to connect public transit and alternate transportation options into one seamless experience. Prior to joiningMoovel Nat was Founder and Chief Executive at GlobeSherpa Inc., a software company specializing in mobile ticketing applications for mass transit and other verticals.

Nat is TiE Charter Member and has Masters in International Management, Finance/ Sustainability, PS


Paula Hayes, CEO & Founder

Hue Noir was created by Paula Hayes, an entrepreneurial cosmetics chemist with a degree in biology, an MBA and a life-long love of makeup, sparked by trying her Mom's red lipstick at age 14.  Hue Noir brings to life Paula's dream of empowering women to look and feel their very best.

She began her career in R&D, specializing in product development for prominent clients in the food, beverage, and cosmetics industries, and went on to work in senior management at large corporations, before moving on to use what she'd learned to help build start-up enterprises.


Raghu Raghavan, Founder & Board Member at Act-On Software, Inc

Founder of Act-On Software, one of the fastest growing private companies in America (Forbes List 2013, Inc 500 List in 2013, 2014 & 2015, Deloitte Fast500 list in 2013, 2014 and 2015).

Previously, co-founder of one of the most successful cloud-based marketing technology companies of the past decade: Responsys (NASDAQ: MKTG), eventually acquired by Oracle. As one of two founders, conceived, architected and built pioneering online marketing application service on a multi-tenanted SaaS platform.


Michael Choi, Chairman, Board of Directors - Axiom EPM

Mike guides the overall direction for Axiom EPM, including company strategy, business development and international expansion efforts. With over 20 years of experience in the enterprise performance management software industry, he has been instrumental to the company’s rapid growth. He was President & CEO at CPM Systems, Inc before joining Axiom.

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Randy Lund, KPMG US, Board Member Columbia Banking System

Randy is a retired audit partner with experience in auditing, accounting and financial advisory for public and private companies in many industries including manufacturing, transportation, semiconductor, auto dealers and consumer markets. Assisted a number of clients in their initial public offering, secondary offerings and debt offerings as well as accounting for mergers and acquisitions.

Spent two years in KPMG's Department of Professional Practice (DPP) in New York researching and consulting on technical issues related to accounting and SEC matters.

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Stephen Marsh, Founder Chairman, and CEO of Smarsh

Stephen Marsh founded the hosted email archiving and compliance provider Smarsh, Inc. in 2001, and now oversees a global operation with more than 20,000 clients worldwide and 225 employees. Under Marsh’s leadership, Smarsh has grown to become the financial services industry’s premier electronic communications archiving provider, helping enterprises around the world meet their recordkeeping, supervision and e-discovery obligations.

Marsh was recently named the 2014 FTF News Fintech Person of the Year, and also serves as a member of the board of directors for the National Association of Independent Brokers/Dealers (NAIBD).


Kanth Gopalpur, Chair at Business Oregon Commission

Kanth Gopalpur, is a Portland based entrepreneur and angel investor. He is a Board Member at James Beard Public Market, Poached Jobs and TIE Oregon. Kanth had co-founded Monsoon Commerce, Inc. in 2002 and served as its President and CEO. He also founded and led the online operations of from 1994 to 2000. He holds a Master’s Degree in Government and International Studies from the University of South Carolina. He has a patent in Online marketplace management system with automated pricing tool.

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Chris Bright, VP of Marketing at Zapproved

Chris has dedicated his career to working with emerging growth companies and high-tech startups for more than 20 years. Prior to helping start Zapproved, he managed worldwide corporate communications for Pixelworks, a publicly traded semiconductor company. He was part of Pixelworks’ IPO team in 2000. Chris previously worked at two high-tech public relations firms, one of which he founded grew from six to 26 employees in the first year. He has additional experience working for a major law firm and with the World Bank. In the mid-90s, he helped found the Oregon Venture Investment Conference, the first to connect the Silicon Valley VC community with the state's entrepreneurs.


Stacy Friedman, President at Olympian Gaming

Stacy is a seasoned casino game designer, innovator and strategist. He is experienced in creating novel gaming technologies and have developed an IP portfolio of over three dozen gaming patents. As President of Olympian Gaming, he designed and analyzed over a hundred casino games and negotiated several royalty-bearing game content and IP licenses. 

Specialties: Casino consulting, casino game design, mathematical analysis, gaming patent development, patent infringement analysis, expert witness testimony.


Rohit Vidwans, Vice President Platform Engineering Group (Emeritus)

Engineering executive with a career that spans 20+ years and accomplishments in the design and delivery of multiple generations of Intel’s multibillion-dollar portfolio of industry-leading platforms.

Broad-based experience in the development of scalable global engineering organizations, managing multimillion-dollar budgets and building global, cross-functional organizations that thrive as highly-qualified and productive engineering teams. Holds 11 patents in computer architecture and design.