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External Advisory Board

External Advisory Board

To continually improve our programs, curriculum, and delivery strategies, the Close School has established a committee of distinguished external advisors comprised of entrepreneurs, business and industry experts, and community leaders to provide valuable input and service.

Close School External Advisory Board Members

Al Altomari
Mr. Altomari is President and Chief Executive Officer of Agile Therapeutics and a member of the Company’s Board of Directors since 2010.  Prior to being named President and Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Altomari served as Agile’s Executive Chairman from 2004 to 2010 in which he closed a $45 million venture round in May 2010.  Serving as Chief Executive Officer, he raised an additional $40 million of equity in June 2012 and closed a $15 million financing agreement in December 2012.  Mr. Altomari has over 30 years of experience in the industry, with more than 20 years focused on the development and marketing of specialty pharmaceuticals at global pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, including Johnson & Johnson.

George M. Danko
George Danko is currently an independent business advisor that provides strategy development, marketing, sales, channel development, business development and operational consulting services to companies with diverse business needs; driving the quick return to profitable growth, global expansion or exit. Mr. Danko currently serves as a the board member of Onpoint Medical Diagnostics, UpdateLogic, Reshare Commerce, LLC, SinuGenix, LLC and a board observer for YesVideo, Inc.

Michael F. Doyle
Michael Doyle is a Trustee for the Estate of Charles D. Close and The Charles and Barbara Close Foundation. He is the President and CEO of CDS Analytical, Inc., a designer and manufacturer of laboratory instruments for sample preparation and analysis that has been in business for over 30 years, located in Oxford, Pennsylvania. He is a member of the Advisory Council for the Laurence A. Baiada Institute for Entrepreneurship at Drexel University.

Michael Edwards
Michael Edwards is the Executive Vice President for U.S. retail merchandising at Staples, Inc. He previously served as President and Chief Executive Officer of Borders Group, Inc. and had also served as the company’s chief merchant. Prior to Borders, Mr. Edwards was President and Chief Executive Officer of Lucy Activewear.

David Geltzer
David Geltzer is the founder and director of the Geltzer Family Foundation, established in 2003 and the retired president of the specialty clothing stores Aéropostale and Chelsea Campbell. He had an extensive business career at Macy’s New York and helped Macy’s develop and start the Charter Club and Aéropostale Specialty Store chains. In 1998, as a principal owner, Mr. Geltzer was instrumental in taking the Macy’s Specialty Store Division business private and then helped the company prepare to go public.

Edward J. Grubb
Edward Grubb was formerly the President and Co-Founder of Network Alternatives, Inc. (NAI).  He has most recently served as Vice President with mindSHIFT Technologies, Inc., a Best Buy (NYSE:BBY) services company.  MindSHIFT is a leading IT outsourcing and cloud services provider to small and mid-size businesses. Since 1987, Mr. Grubb has provided consulting services within the legal industry, helping firms across the country select and implement technology solutions to address their business needs.

Karen Jehanian
Karen Jehanian, P.E. is president and owner of KMJ Consulting, Inc., an innovative transportation engineering and consulting services firm based in Ardmore, PA. With more than 30 years of experience in transportation consulting along the eastern seaboard and abroad, Karen’s specific areas of interest include: intelligent transportation systems and travel information, stakeholder services, traffic calming, transportation planning and strategic planning.  As a direct stakeholder in her clients’ successes, she focuses on understanding their needs and works proactively to anticipate challenges and identify viable solutions.

Robert Lazzaro
Robert Lazzaro is the Vice Chairman of the Board of Trustees at Brigidine School, Windsor, UK and the Senior Vice President and Global Life Sciences Practice Leader of BeechTree Partners, LLC. He has 25 years of leadership experience in the life sciences and executive-search industries. Throughout his career, Mr. Lazzaro has built relationships and conducted executive searches with a diverse client base, including leading multi-national, small and mid-size public and private companies.

Bonnie E. Richards
Bonnie Richards is a Senior Vice President in Private Wealth Management at UBS Financial Services, Inc. Her group serves as a multi-family office for ultra-high-net-worth individuals and their families. This includes planning and operations in business succession, asset protection, investments, income and estate taxes, insurance (life, health and disability), estates and trusts. Bonnie is member of the Drexel University Leadership Advisory Board, and is the prior Chair of the American Bar Association Estate and Gift Tax Committee.

Stanley W. Silverman
Stan Silverman is the former President and CEO of PQ Corporation, a privately held global company operating in North America, South America, Europe, and Asia Pacific in chemicals and engineered glass materials. He is a director on the boards of Drummond Scientific Company, where he serves as lead director, General Chemical Corporation, Femco Holdings, LLC, Exocor, Inc. and Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Southeastern Pennsylvania. Stan is Vice Chairman of the Board of Drexel University, Chairman of the Board of the Drexel University College of Medicine and a Trustee of Friends Select School.

Catherine A. Sohn
Catherine Sohn is Dean’s Professor at the University of the Sciences in Philadelphia (formerly the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy) and Founder & President, Sohn Health Strategies, LLC.  Previously, over 28 years at GlaxoSmithKline and its predecessor, SmithKline Beecham, she held U.S. and global leadership roles in the Pharmaceutical, Vaccine and Consumer healthcare divisions, retiring in 2010 as senior vice president of worldwide business development for GSK’s $8 billion consumer healthcare division.

Ari Winkleman
Ari Winkleman is founder and CEO at Involvio, an event calendar app and website that integrates with Facebook and school calendars to find events based on a user's interests. Since launching in 2011, the start-up boasts a user base of students from more than 100 campuses. Mr. Winkleman has also been a Principal at Thump Entertainment Group and President of Double A Productions.