Maher’s experience was accumulated over the past 25+ years from launching and building tech startups, leading products at public software companies, teaching at universities, to building innovation ecosystems. He is currently the Chief Innovation Advisor at Qatar Research, Development and Innovation Council, and a partner with 212.vc – a venture capital firm based in Istanbul. He was the Managing Director of Qatar Science and Technology Park from 2016 – 2018 and has been a faculty member at Carnegie Mellon University since 2012.
Kira currently leads the CITRIS Foundry Innovation Incubator. Her background includes expertise in design thinking, grant writing, and clean energy technology. As the senior scientist at advanced materials start-up, and Cyclotron Road company Sepion Technologies, she tackled technical roadmapping and materials development for next-gen electric vehicle batteries. She earned her MSc. in Materials Science at Stanford University, where she studied non-hazardous thin-film solar cells, and was a design thinking lead for industry partners via the Stanford design school.
Mikhail Holst supports the Incubator and teams at the Foundry. Mikhail’s expertise lies in entrepreneurship at the intersection of technology and social impact. He brings a decade of experience working with and within early-stage companies in go-to-market strategy, business development, fundraising, partnerships, and communications. Previously he was the Senior Portfolio Manager at Singularity University Ventures, a startup ecosystem that funded, supported, and coached over 70 startups focused on global issues that raised over $1B in funding.
Director of Resource Sustainability X-Lab
Thomas Azwell is an experienced scientist with a demonstrated history of working in higher education. He is skilled in corporate sustainability, remediation, agriculture, and oceanography. Thomas is a strong research professional with a Masters in Science Education and a PhD in Environmental Science from the University of California, Berkeley.
Cassidy Hardin is a third year studying Data Science at UC Berkeley. She was born in Colorado, and grew up in the United Kingdom, and the United Arab Emirates. Cassidy is overseeing Data Operations for the CITRIS Foundry. She believes in diversity and inclusion, and is working to develop opportunities to support diversity within STEM and entrepreneurship opportunities for underrepresented populations.
Design & Media
Janhavi is a second year studying Cognitive Science at UC Berkeley. She is from San Jose, CA. She currently works on outreach to faculty/student departments and creating collateral to help develop a consistent aesthetic for the Foundry, overall helping strengthen the CITRIS brand across web, print, data, and media.
Research & Operations
Sarah is an undergraduate Industrial Engineering & Operations Research student at the UC Berkeley College of Engineering. In addition to collaborating on CITRIS data projects, Sarah aims to build community among and facilitate the productivity of incubator cohorts by planning events and workshops for founders.