Our Incubator Members

Tech Alpharetta Mentors

Tom Berger

A seasoned senior operating manager with 22 years of big company experience and 23 years of start-up company experience in telecommunications and high tech including working within the venture capital community for 6 years.  CEO of seven start-ups with exits >$260M.  For the past 7 years, acted as an independent coach/consultant to startup and private companies, mostly on a pro bono, “give back” basis.  Tom has a free website CxO-Atlas.com that contains almost 600 articles on starting and running a business

Strategy / Positioning
Revenue / Sales Strategy
Quality Sys Implementation
Market Segmentation
Raising Money
Business Processes
Risk Analysis
Management Development

Joe Briner

Joe Briner is the Managing Director of Vertical Capital Advisors, LLC, his Alpharetta-based, boutique investment bank.  (The bank doesn’t invest in tech startups). Joe is available to assist our startups in refining their presentations/pitches to investors, their pitch decks and materials, and in telling a compelling story. He’s heard hundreds of pitches and seen hundreds of presentations, and he knows what’s needed to make a compelling presentation to investors and to tell an effective story.


Funding and Investing
Company Growth
Financial Analysis
Business Leadership
Financial Presentations
Pitching to Investors
Financial Services
Growth, expansion &
   Acquisition capital, M&A


Joshua Crafford

VP, Functional Learning & Development
Synchrony, formerly GE Capital

Josh Crafford is an expert in organizational design and innovation.  He has over 10 years of leadership experience inside 4 different fortune 200 companies.  Josh works with teams to provide fresh perspectives, maximize efforts and enhance creative intelligence.  Josh played a critical role in the IPO separation of GE Capital to Synchrony (valued at ~$19 billion) as VP, Leadership Learning & Development.  He has started and led numerous, local and international, L&D departments focusing on maximizing several areas of business.  He also serves as an inside consultant for strategic initiatives, innovation, customer journeys and human centered design.  He holds a master’s degree in Design and Innovation from SCAD.


Leadership Skills & Development
Creative Intelligence
Emotional Intelligence
Innovation Process
Human-Centered Design
Experimental Design
Adult Learning Styles
Corporate Strategy

Stuart Granger

Chief Operating Officer, Voxie

Stuart Granger is a technologist, entrepreneur and advisor with extensive operating experience across multiple industries on 3 continents. With 30+ years of global experience, he has served in senior roles ranging from Fortune 500 companies to founder and CEO his own startups.  He has successfully started, scaled and sold technology companies as well as guided the SasS strategies and IT operations of a successful IPO as the company’s CIO.  He now works as an advisor, consultant and mentor to technology focused companies as they navigate through startup, growth and scaling phases.  His areas of focus include product/market fit, team assessment and development and fundraising preparation.  He holds an undergraduate degree in Computer Information Systems and an M.B.A from the Robinson College of Business at Georgia State University


Product/Market Fit Strategy
SaaS Operations Planning
Investor Due Diligence &
   Fundraising prep
Organizational planning &
   Team Dev.

Paul Sims

Seasoned executive, serial entrepreneur and board member with 20+ years of experience building and scaling companies. Paul’s experience is especially deep in digital disruption, having built several industry disrupters, as well as in marketplaces – having built five marketplaces.  Pau also has operating and investment experience in insurance tech, fintech and other tech sectors.  He has advised investors and company founders and currently serves as an independent board member of a seed stage company.

Go to Market
Business models for:
    Marketplaces, Saas, Transaction fee companies, Advertising, Insurance, Automotive, and Real Estate industries

Bob Ivy

Former Manager with US Navy DOD, Maritime, Robotic Programs.  General Dynamics.  Unmanned Surface Vehicle Program Manager, Fabrication and fielding of Search and Rescue Vehicles.  Strong Engineering, Engineering Management and Program Management experience with Government agencies and International projects.

Engineer Management
Military Applications
Government Procurement
Program Management
Proposals to Govt. Agencies
Design, Mfrg, Testing
    Of High Tech Products
Hartware & Software Design

David Jones

Co-Founder & Board of Directors, Flexential

David co-founded Peak 10 to be the leader in hybrid data center operations, hosting and managed services east of the Mississippi.  David chose to serve on the board of directors to provide guidance as the new company continues the growth of its strategic and tactical journey. Flexential, a national, hybrid colocation, hosting, network and managed service data center company resulted from the late 2017 combination of two market leading data center companies, ViaWest headquartered n Denver, and Peak 10, headquartered in Charlotte.  This combination created the largest national hybrid, facilities-based, hosting services company in the United States.  He has 40 years of combined local, long distance telecommunications and IT executive leadership experience in sales, marketing and operations, working for GTE (Verizon), Telecom*USA, MCI and ITC Holding Company.  David holds a B.A. degree in Economics from the University of Virginia and completed the Executive Development Business Program at George Washington University.  He is an operating director for the IDEA Fund, a venture capital firm in Durham, NC and is chairman of Innovate Charlotte, a public-private fund fueling entrepreneurial growth in the Charlotte Region.

Business Process
Management Dev
Raising Money

Sean O’Brien

I’ve been in the investment, M&A and corporate strategy business for 25 years, completing 30+ corporate acquisitions and funding, advising or mentoring dozens of early stage companies. I recently retired as President/CSO of a global, PE-owned collaboration software & services leader, with offices in 25 countries and revenue of ~$550M.  Today, I am working with mid-market companies to help them develop and execute their corporate development / M&A strategies, while continuing to help startups navigate the strategic, financial and operational challenges they face as they grow and scale their businesses

Corporate acquisitions
Funding of early stage
Dev. & execution of corporate
M&A Strategies
Strategic, financial &
    Operational challenge
    Navigation by startups
Growth & Scaling of startups



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