Lawrence N. Field Center

Faculty & Staff

Field Center/SBDC/CSE/IVE Staff
Field Mentors
Investment Advisor-in-Residence
Smarter Planet Executive-in-Residence
Field Fellows



Scott L. Newbert is the Lawrence N. Field Chair in Entrepreneurship at Baruch College. He received his Ph.D. in strategic management and entrepreneurship from Rutgers University. His research has been published in the world’s leading academic journals and highlighted in popular media outlets including the Boston Herald and Inc. He also serves as a field editor for Journal of Business Venturing. In addition to his academic endeavors, Dr. Newbert also provides consulting services to non-profit and for-profit organizations, with past clients including the United States and Dutch governments and Sandia National Laboratories.

Prior to obtaining his Ph.D., he worked in sales for Hershey Foods Corporation, co-founded a privately-owned marketing consulting firm serving clients including Colgate-Palmolive and McNeil Nutritionals, and co-founded Monmouth University’s Division I FCS football program. As the incoming Academic Director of the Field Center, Dr. Newbert plans to work closely with the Field Center staff and all of its stakeholders in order to increase the impact its curricula, scholarship, and outreach have on the local entrepreneurship community.

Marlene Leekang, Administrative Director of the Lawrence N. Field Center for Entrepreneurship at Baruch College, Zicklin School of Business manages strategic relationships with a variety of partners supporting innovation and entrepreneurship activities at Baruch College. Leekang is responsible for the development and management of Field Center programming including research and academics, recruitment, and strategic planning for new entrepreneurial initiatives supporting CUNY students and the community.

In her previous role as Executive Director of NYU Tandon’s School of Engineering’s Enterprise Learning and Online Learning units, she managed the development of new initiatives and collaborations across the University and with external partners and clients. Leekang was responsible for preparing financial models and oversight of implementation, as well as launching new academic programs such as the Bioinformatics MS degree and NYU-offered Coursera certificates in a variety of STEM disciplines. Leekang also oversaw day-to-day operations of online learning and corporate education activities. She was responsible for implementing marketing and recruitment strategies, technological and pedagogical services for students and faculty, and processes in student management and quality assurance practices. Leekang’s leadership contributed to the tremendous growth and expansion of Enterprise Learning and Online Learning units, resulting in doubling revenue and enrollment in less than four years. With over 15 years of management experience, Leekang has worked as an executive in corporate environments, managing large-scale local and global customer service teams. Her extensive background has given her the know-how to execute best practices in serving students, faculty and Fortune 500 clients. She earned her Bachelor’s in Psychology from York College, her Master’s in Psychology from Queens College, and her Master’s in Higher Education Administration from Baruch College.


Ulas Neftci is the Regional Director of the Midtown Manhattan Small Business Development Center.  He specializes in technology businesses, early stage business planning, equity transactions and business plans.  Prior to becoming the director of the SBDC he has been awarded multiple times in recognition for his consulting as one of the top business advisors within the SBDC Network. He has served as a Phase 2 SBIR Commercialization reviewer and has advised micro lending institutions in credit analysis and loan packaging.  Ulas teaches various classes including Entrepreneurship ManagementTechnology, Innovation and Design in Entrepreneurship in the Department of Management of the Zicklin School of Business at Baruch College. An active member of the entrepreneurship community he has served as a judge and mentor in business plan competitions and mentors at the Entrepreneurs Roundtable Accelerator. He has a BS in Engineering, MBA and an MS in Computer Information Systems. His previous work experience is in technology, international business and his own entrepreneurial endeavors.


Kindra Cooper serves as the Community Coordinator at the Lawrence N. Field Center for Entrepreneurship. She is in charge of marketing – overseeing social media, email marketing, blogging, event promotions, graphics, and updating web content. She hails from Indonesia, where she wrote features for major publications including The Jakarta Post, Indonesia’s largest English-language newspaper. Once in New York, she covered sustainable architecture and design for The Architect’s Newspaper, and wrote for Canadian news outlet She is currently pursuing a self-proposed B.A. in Political Economic.
Faith Fraser is the Community Manager at the CUNY Startups. She manages external communications for student initiatives: events, competitions, social networks, newsletters, websites, etc. Faith graduated with a B.A. in Television and Radio from Brooklyn College and an M.B.A. in Entrepreneurship and Marketing from Baruch College. She worked as an Event Coordinator for the City of New York’s – Office of the Brooklyn Borough and was the President and Co-Owner of Fresh Squeezed Events, Inc., an event management company based in Brooklyn, NY.
Carlene Rhoden, CUNY Administrative Assistant
William Wilson is the MakerHub Coordinator at the Field Center. He attended Wentworth Institute of Technology and received a B.S. in Electromechanical Engineering, an interdisciplinary five-year program. He has worked at Acoustacorp designing motor control panels for theatrical rigging equipment, at ASML laying out safety and mains distribution electronics for semiconductor manufacturing, at Cambridge Technology configuring analog laser scanners, at Bentley Publishers as a publishing intern for automotive manuals and was Senior Tutor at Wentworth’s Center for Teaching and Learning. William models 3d printed parts using Autodesk Inventor and has a Shapeways Store called Squared Roots. He lives in Manhattan, NY.


Elisa Balabram is an Intuitive Business Coach and the Author of Ask Others, Trust Yourself: The Entrepreneurial Woman’s Key to Success and Mending a Broken Heart: Lili’s Magic Journey. Her main mission is to share her own self-discovery, spiritual, healing, out of her comfort zone, challenging at times and magical journey with women to empower them to achieve their full potential, start their businesses, and pursue their dreams and life’s purpose. In addition to providing one-on-one business coaching, Elisa Balabram hosts webinars, 7-week programs, and in person workshops to help women uncover and pursue their full potential.Ms. Balabram was named the U.S. Small Business Administration New York District 2008 Women in Business Champion of the Year. She is currently an adjunct lecturer at Baruch College, teaching entrepreneurial and Family Business Management classes to undergraduate BBA students.


Kapil Bawa, Ph.D. is Acting Director of the Zicklin Executive Programs and Professor of Marketing in the Zicklin School of Business. He has written and co-written articles focusing on marketing for various academic publications.He has been a reviewer for leading marketing journals and marketing conferences, and a reviewer for Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada and for Hong Kong Research Grants Council. Bawa has been a speaker at industry conferences and forums, including for the Marketing Science Institute, Conference Board of Canada, and Canadian Embassy in Japan. Bawa has also conducted executive development programs in Singapore, Taipei, India and New York and has consulted on marketing research projects. Bawa earned a B.A. from the University of Delhi; an M.B.A. from the Indian Institute of Management in Calcutta; and a Ph.D. from Columbia University.


Glenn Emanuel is an award-winning lecturer specializing in Sales, Negotiation, Communications and Marketing topics. Having been a VP in several organizations, Glenn has held senior leadership positions in Sales, Marketing and Strategic Planning and has helped multinational companies to successfully grow revenues and enter new markets. Glenn is a Business Specialist at Gold Group, a mobile solutions company that specializes in improving customer interactions and loyalty. He was the founder and President of Turning Point Associates, a marketing and pricing consulting firm. Glenn spent 10 years at The New York Times, eventually becoming VP of Corporate Sales, where he headed the transformation of the Times from a regional to national and international newspaper. He holds a BS and MBA from George Washington University.


Associate Professor Donna M. Gitter joined the Zicklin School of Business after practicing as a commercial litigator in New York City, during which time she also performed significant pro bono work on behalf of nonprofit corporations and immigrants seeking political asylum. Since 1999, Ms. Gitter has published numerous articles relating to judicial and legislative responses in the European Union and the United States to issues at the intersection of technology and ethics, such as biotechnology patenting and biomedical ethics. These articles have appeared in publications such as the New York University Law Review, the Columbia Science and Technology Law Review, the Washington and Lee Law Review, and the George Mason Law Review. She has presented her research at international conferences in Italy, Scotland, India, and the United States. Ms. Gitter graduated Phi Beta Kappa and cum laude from Cornell University’s College of Arts and Sciences, where she earned a B.A. in Government in 1989. In 1994, she earned her J.D. from the University of Pennsylvania Law School.

Mary Ann Holley is a lecturer in the Management Department of the Zicklin School of Business, Baruch College, Mary Anne Holley teaches Entrepreneurship Management and is a Field Mentor at the Lawrence N. Field Center for Entrepreneurship. Ms. Holley is a marketing, financial management and magazine start-up specialist with over 30 years of corporate, small business and entrepreneurial experience. Before joining Baruch College, she was Associate Director of Magazine Acquisitions & Development for CBS Magazines, General Manager of Quest and Audio magazines, Publisher of several start-up magazines and developed feasibility studies and business plans for numerous prospective entrepreneurs. She has been a consultant for leading corporations including Kodansha, Reed Elsevier, Reader’s Digest and Christie’s. Her areas of expertise include marketing, advertising sales, financial management and new business development. She earned an MBA degree in Marketing from Columbia University and has lectured at Radcliffe College, Pace College and Howard University.

Romi Kher is an Assistant Professor in Entrepreneurship whose research interests include venture creation, entrepreneurial risk preferences and decision making under uncertainty. Romi is also the founder of and a co-facilitator of Flip The Switch workshop series. He is an avid technology addict and often happy to be an alpha tester for new products. He has a PhD in Applied Economics & Management from Cornell University and an MBA from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.

Stephanie has worked in various capacities for nonprofits and small businesses in New York City, Miami and North Carolina. She began her career as a legal advocate and caseworker for immigrants experiencing gender-based violence. Inspired by the resilient, entrepreneurial spirit she witnessed in many of her clients, she sought opportunities to make a positive social and environmental impact via small business. She has since worked on projects in business development, operations and marketing for organizations focusing on sustainable agriculture, entrepreneurship and the arts. Stephanie graduated from New York University with a B.A. in Cultural Anthropology and History. She is currently pursuing an MBA at the Zicklin School of Business with a focus in Entrepreneurship and Marketing.

Allison Lehr Samuels is a full-time Lecturer with a focus on Entrepreneurship and Small Business, and a Field Mentor at the Lawrence N. Field Center for Entrepreneurship at Baruch College. Her consulting work includes over 1500 small business owners and entrepreneurs who have ranged from fashion designers, radio producers, and restaurateurs, to hedge fund consultants, violin makers and graphic designers. She has extensive experience developing business and marketing plans, obtaining small business loans and building up the knowledge and confidence of her clients so that they feel empowered to take action. Currently, she is co-developing a course “Business Meets 3D Digital Design and Fabrication” and previously co-developed and implemented a course on Women and Entrepreneurship which looks at the challenges specific to women owned businesses, and explores the necessary skills for women to successfully obtain resources and run successful businesses. She was the first recipient of the Zicklin Hybrid Online Teaching with Technology Award for her work in curriculum development. She holds an MBA in Entrepreneurship Management from Baruch College and a BA from Barnard College, Columbia University in Theatre.

Stuart Schulman has served as a Department Chair and senior administrator at CUNY and was the Founding Academic Director of the undergraduate and graduate online business degrees at the CUNY School of Professional Studies. He is also the founder of the CUNY Institute for Virtual Enterprise and the Center for Economic and Workforce Development. His award-winning expertise in technology-driven learning simulations has been recognized by USASBE and other professional organizations, governmental agencies and universities. Mr. Schulman is currently engaged in the planning of a national Center for the Technology Enabled Entrepreneur, supported by the National Science Foundation (NSF). Schulman was a founding member of the “I Love New York” advertising and marketing campaign, and directed the AARP (American Association of Retired Persons) Travel Service. His entrepreneurial experience includes starting several airlines, and marketing and advertising firms.
Stuart Schulman is the holder of a BBA in Accounting from Baruch College; an MBA in International Management from New York University and an EdD from the George Washington University in Higher Education Administration.

Emre Veral is Professor of Operations Management at Baruch College. He currently serves as the Academic Director of the Baruch MBA in Health Care Administration Program; Deputy Chair of the Management Department; and Field Mentor for the Lawrence N. Field Center for Entrepreneurship. Professor Veral’s academic interests concentrate on service operations management, specifically on improving productivity and efficiency in health care delivery systems. His contributions to academic research and industry include several publications and projects involving scheduling, inventory, forecasting, and capacity management, in both theory and practice. He was the Academic Director of the MBA program at Bilgi University, Istanbul during his sabbatical leave in 1999-2000, and has worked as independent consultant in several countries since 1998. Professor Veral also serves as Senior Research Fellow at the International Center for Corporate Accountability, involved in corporate code of conduct monitoring of offshore manufacturers.

Ramona K. Zachary is the Peter S. Jonas Distinguished Professor of Entrepreneurship in the Department of Management at the Zicklin School of Business at Baruch College. Dr. Zachary’s research and courses are focused on the social and economic dynamics and impacts of family businesses, and minority business ownership and entrepreneurial issues. She has published numerous articles on family business, management and decision making theory. She has edited two books entitled Home-Based Employment and Family Life and The Entrepreneurial Family.

Dr. Zachary currently serves as a Co-Editor of the new Entrepreneurship Research Journal with Berkeley Electronic Press, is associated with the International Family Enterprise Research Academy and is currently serving on its Board and as the Director of its Research and Publications Subcommittee. She received her Ph.D. from Purdue University. Before joining Baruch College, Dr. Zachary was Professor and the J. Thomas Clark Fellow of Entrepreneurship and Personal Enterprise at Cornell University, Ithaca, New York.

Leo has a background working in the startup environment, specifically with businesses that later went on to partner with Fortune 500 clients. He has an MBA in Management and Finance. His other passion is in teaching and he currently teaches here at Baruch College.



Ray Garcia is the Managing Director of Buoyant Capital, a global peer advisory think tank addressing the growth challenges of small to medium sized enterprises. The firm coordinates its team of experts to help its clients improve competitiveness through talent management, global market expansion through partner access, technology asset management, capital investment and restructuring. Buoyant Capital was founded in 2000 located in New York City and has helped launch several start-up companies and worked as an advisor to company founders, CEO’s, and their investors. Ray has over 15 years of experience as a technology entrepreneur, as company CTO co-founder, for four venture-backed companies. Earlier in his career, he worked as an executive for several major banks, Citicorp, Republic National Bank, Bank of America, and working as a technology consultant to several large US multi-national corporations. In recent years, he was elected to serve as an executive in resident at MIT Media Lab for one year, then to serve on Baruch College Field Center for Entrepreneurship on the advisory board, and also spends time as a mentor to young aspiring entrepreneurs at City College of New York, Grove School or Engineering, Zahn Innovation Center. Since 2011, he has taught an intensive accelerated course in entrepreneurship at the University of Pisa, Italy, to PhD candidates with a focus on technology transfer and spin-offs and taught at the School of Economics International MBA, where he coordinates the entrepreneurship curriculum. He is releasing a book in 2015, “startup vertigo” for new tech global ventures based on his experiences and teaching. Ray remains an entrepreneur first, and his most recent venture co-founded in 2014 was launched in Helsinki, Finland, the company is building solutions for cash management for the developing world that is deployed in Indonesia. He may be contacted at


Sandra Roth’s career has spanned 30 years in the US equity markets, the last 15 of which was devoted to managing a large pool of pension assets, both public and private, for Benefit Capital Management, the money management subsidiary of Union Carbide Corporation. Up to her retirement in 2001, she was Chief Equity Officer and Senior VP, overseeing $2.5 Billion in public and $200 million in private investments. In the latter capacity, she served on boards of several domestic and international venture capital funds, most notably Patricoff & Company, APAX Ventures and Advent International. Roth also represented Benefit Capital on the boards of several early stage companies, including Genesis Health Ventures, Apache Medical Systems and Tegal Corporation. Prior to 1984, Roth was an Institutional Equity Analyst at Shearson/American Express.


Rolando is an IBM Executive IT Architect and Client Technical Advisor (CTA), covering the Wall Street Region. He is the lead technical client-facing role assigned to select Fortune 500 clients who wish to partner with IBM on technology initiatives in support of their business objectives. He provides expert, vendor-neutral architectural advice on business and technical solution strategies that address key client business issues. Rolando is responsible for the long-term technical success of his clients, and as such is required to maintain effective long-term relationships at the senior level with the client’s CIO and key technical decision makers and influencers. He also engages in various first-of-a-kind projects that help shape the roadmap of IBM products and services. As part of IBM’s Academic Initiative program, Rolando also volunteers as the IBM University Ambassador to the City University of New York (CUNY). In this role, he fosters strategic collaboration between IBM and CUNY, and supports STEM skills development and the adoption of the latest IBM technology solutions among faculty and students. Rolando earned an MBA degree from the Zicklin School of Business at Baruch College, and a Bachelors of Science degree in Computer Science from The City College of the City University of New York.


Gernely Almonte, Front Desk Receptionist
Currently attending Fashion Institute of Technology majoring in Advertising and Marketing Communication. Worked for American Eagle in the past and have volunteers for numerous events such as the New York Fashion Week and IPSY Beauty Events.
Bryan Britt, MakerHub Technology Facilitator
Bryan is a 3D printing specialist intern, working hands-on with the printers and software. There are a lot of moving parts here at the Maker Hub at Baruch, so some of the things he does include: assisting students with their projects, giving tutorials on 3D printing, helping with operations, doing research on how to improve the Maker Hub, and working on personal projects that involve 3D printing. His career goal is to become a product designer, while keeping sustainable designs that change the world in mind. Britt received a B.A. in Graphic Communications with a minor in New Media Art from Baruch College.