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Investor Speaker Series: Both Sides of the Coin

February 3 @ 1:00 pm 2:00 pm Eastern Time

Join us virtually on Thursday, Feb. 3 for the next event in our Investor Speaker Series!

In the first installment of the Investor Speaker Series in 2022, we’ll sit down with two Greentown founders and their investors as they talk about their experiences working together before, during, and after an equity investment was made in the company. Attendees will get a behind-the-scenes look at one of the most important relationships in a startup’s journey and what best practices both founders and investors can follow to keep things moving smoothly.


Shreya Dave, Co-founder and CEO, Via Separations

Shreya Dave is the CEO of Via Separations, working to drive energy efficiency improvements through the manufacturing value chain. She worked with Professor Jeffrey Grossman at MIT for her PhD research on graphene oxide membranes, which ultimately led to the founding of Via. Via was recognized as one of C&EN’s 10 startups to watch in 2019. She is passionate about interdisciplinary creativity, building things, and educating people. She was awarded Technology Review’s 35 Innovators under 35 in 2018. Shreya holds Bachelors and Masters’ degrees from MIT in Mechanical Engineering and Technology & Policy. She also enjoys serving on MIT’s Corporate Development Committee, the board of directors for Greentown Labs, and mentoring in MIT’s product design and development course, 2.009.

Dexter Turner, CEO, OpConnect

Dexter is the Co-Founder and CEO of OpConnect – a payment processing and energy management platform for Electric Vehicle charging. The overall vision is to make the EV driving experience better by providing a mobile app that reserves a charging station, takes payment, and predicts how long it’ll take to charge while you grab a coffee.

Vera Schroeder, PhD, Partner, Safar Partners

Vera Schroeder is an Associate and Venture Investor at Safar Partners. Vera brings broad experience in the fields of chemistry, nanoscience and materials science to the Safar team. As a graduate student, she worked in the laboratory of Professor Tim Swager at MIT focused on carbon-nanotube based chemical sensing. While at MIT, she also spent her time at Sloan and HBX learning about venture creation and strategy as well as interning at MP Healthcare Venture Management fund. She holds a BS in Chemistry and an MS in Chemistry from RWTH Aachen University, and a Ph.D. in Chemistry from MIT.

Julianne Zimmerman, Managing Director, Reinventure Capital

For more than 25 years Julianne has been putting technology and capital to work for the greater good in the US and abroad.  Along the way she has contributed in a variety of roles:  Co-Founder of a seed-stage investment firm;  VP of Communications at a utility-scale energy storage company;  Co-founder and Director of Business Development of a biofuel company;  VP of Engineering at a water purification company;  and trusted mentor, board member, advisor, or consultant to many more. She invests heavily in cultivating community, including as a mentor with the MIT Venture Mentoring Service and life deacon in her church;  she created and teaches a top-rated course on Innovative Social Enterprises at Tufts University. Julianne speaks and writes for a wide variety of domestic and global audiences such as GreenMoney, GreenBiz, Sloan EMBA, GIST Global Entrepreneurship Bootcamp, TBLI, Impact Metropolis, EY Strategic Growth Forum, and the MIT Nuts & Bolts Course, among others;  she also frequently serves as a judge for technology and entrepreneurship competitions, and as a connectrix for innovators around the world.

Moderated by Ryan Dings, Chief Operating Officer and General Counsel, Greentown Labs

Ryan (he/him/his) is the Chief Operating Officer & General Counsel of Greentown Labs, North America’s largest cleantech incubator based in Somerville, MA. Prior to joining Greentown Labs, Ryan served as the  Chief Operating Officer & General Counsel of Sunwealth, a solar investment firm committed to simplifying the process of impact investment. Ryan also served on the executive team of Blu Homes and has advised numerous early-stage clean technology companies over the past decade. Ryan started his career practicing commercial real estate law in Charlotte, North Carolina. Ryan holds graduate degrees in law from Wake Forest University School of Law and in design from Harvard University Graduate School of Design, and a bachelor of arts from UNC-Chapel Hill.    

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