The Jake Jabs Center's distinguished faculty includes many talented professors from the CU Denver Business School, as well as experienced experts and entrepreneurs from the Denver business community.

Joel Appel

Adjunct Instructor, President at Brainetics LLC

Joel has been an entrepreneur and business manager most of his life. After attending Claremont McKenna College and Northwestern's Kellogg Graduate School of Management, Joel worked at the Quaker Oats Company for 8 years. He then founded Orange Glo International, marketers of Orange Glo, OxiClean, and Kaboom, with his parents. Joel created the famous television ads feature the late Billy Mays. In 2006 Joel and his family sold Orange Glo to Church & Dwight/Arm & Hammer.

A year later Joel co-founded Launch Pad LLC, a marketing company that backs and runs several consumer products companies such as FullBar, Brainetics, Tortle, 2 Red Hens, and Gallo en Fuego. Joel also owns the Moda Man store on Larimer Square in Denver. Joel sits on the boards of two non-profits, First Descents and the Hoffman Institute. Joel has two high-school aged kids, loves the outdoors, and has tremendous passion for personal and spiritual growth.

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Francisco Conejo


Francisco Conejo is an instructor at the Jake Jabs Center for Entrepreneurship.

Dr. Elizabeth Cooperman


Dr. Elizabeth Cooperman is a professor in the Business School at the University of Colorado Denver and currently serves as the Professional MBA Program Director. Dr. Cooperman teaches Financial Institutions Management, Entrepreneurial Finance, Financial Institutions and Markets, and Short-term Financial Management. Her research and teaching interests are in financial institution management, corporate finance, and entrepreneurial finance.

Dr. Cooperman is the coauthor of the latest revised edition of Financial Institutions Management: An Asset/Liability Approach. Her research articles have appeared in The Journal of Finance, Financial Management, The Journal of Real Estate Economics, The Review of Economics and Statistics, Financial Review, The Journal of Financial Research, The Journal of Financial Services Research, The Journal of Business Research, and other finance and economics journals. She previously served as the Program Director for the MS in Finance program, and was given the Dean's Outstanding Service Award by for the Business School in 2002. At the University of Baltimore, where she taught previously, she won the Dean's Faculty Service Award in 1995, the Baker Research Chair in 1993-1996, and the Outstanding Advisor of the Year Award in 1992.

Dr. Cooperman has a PhD in Finance and an MBA from the University of Georgia. She was the economist member for the Maryland State Bank Board in 1994-1996. She is a past president of the Midwest Finance Association and has served as track chair in Financial Institutions and Markets for both the Southern Finance Association and the Midwest Finance Association.

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Dr. David Forlani

Associate Professor

Dr. David Forlani teaches courses that focus on the planning and implementation of marketing programs, especially as they relate to new market opportunities. He has taught the following courses at the University of Colorado Denver: Marketing Management, Marketing Research, Marketing Strategy, and Strategic Marketing Relationships.

Dr. Forlani's interest in the new business creation processes has strongly influenced both his instructional preferences and his academic research program. His research activities focus on understanding the impact of individual differences and contextual factors on the risk taking behaviors of managers who make new business creation decisions. His articles have appeared in The Journal of Behavioral Decision Making, The Journal of Business Venturing, The Journal of Product Innovation Management, Psychology & Marketing, and other journals.

Dr. Forlani holds a PhD in Business from the University of Minnesota, an MBA with a focus on Marketing Strategy from Tulane University, New Orleans, Louisiana, and an undergraduate degree in Finance from the University of Florida.

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Linda Fried


Linda Fried is an instructor at the Jake Jabs Center for Entrepreneurship.

Dawn Gregg

Associate Professor and Associate Dean of Programs

Dr. Dawn G. Gregg is the Associate Dean of Programs for the Business School at the University of Colorado Denver. As Associate Dean, Dawn is responsible for the overall administration of the both graduate and undergraduate programs. In addition, Dr. Gregg remains an Associate Professor at the University of Colorado at Denver and the founder and Chairman of the Board of Developing Minds Software.

She received her Ph.D. in Computer Information Systems and her M.S. in Information Management from Arizona State University, her M.B.A. from Arizona State University West, and her B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of California at Irvine. Prior to her doctoral studies, she was employed for nine years as a research and development engineer. Her current research focuses on how to organize and maintain Web-based content so that it can be used to better meet business and special education needs. Her work has been published in numerous journals such as MIS Quarterly, the International Journal of Electronic Commerce, IEEE Transactions on Systems Man, and Cybernetics, Communications of the ACM, and Decision Support Systems.

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Michael Harper

Senior Instructor

As an expert in Project Management and Operations, Michael Harper has been teaching at the Business School for over 15 years. He adopts a traditional approach to teaching that includes: lectures to present tools, techniques, and strategy; assignments to develop knowledge and skill; and case studies or projects to challenge application in a small business environment. Areas of Research focus on empirical research in perceived risk, inventory analysis, and business statistics.

Mr. Harper was a staff member at Los Alamos National Laboratory where research included nuclear containment at the Nevada Test Site, microearthquake research, tsunami research, rock mechanics and fragmentation of oil shale, decision modeling, and bayesian statistics. He was also the Vice-president at Professional Geophysics Incorporated where consulting included software development and project management. 

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Jim Lopresti

Adjunct Instructor

Jim LoPresti has worked in both corporate and academic worlds, utilizing practice and theory for over thirty-five years. He brings proven expertise to his clients in executive coaching, negotiation skills/conflict resolution, leadership through storytelling, team building, senior management alignment, introducing and leveraging change, and cultural transformation. With a strong foundation in emotional and social intelligence and the neuroscience of leadership, Jim incorporates methodologies business environments to help inspire a "big picture" perspective.

Jim has worked at all levels in corporations, from C-suite executives to senior and middle managers to front line workers. Jim has also worked with executive MBA, doctoral, and undergraduate students. Jim coaches in the United States, Europe, and Asia, working with executive clients in France, Germany, Belgium, The Netherlands, Italy and Singapore. Jim consults and facilitates programs in large multinational and medium size corporations, working in a wide range of industries including private equity firms, higher education, information technology, construction, pharmaceuticals, and government.

In 2013, Jim began developing a leadership institute for the American University of Rome in collaboration with a recently retired admiral from the United States Navy.
In the corporate arena, Jim has held various management and leadership roles. As the Senior Services Manager for Sun Microsystem he managed a global team. At Lucent Technologies, Jim was a Distance Learning Manager and Senior Performance Analyst in education and training. Prior to Lucent, Jim served as the Aviation Administrator for The Port Authority of New York/New Jersey, and the Newark City Manager for People Express Airlines.

Jim completed his coaching development through the Teleos Leadership Institute and is a certified professional coach (PCC) through the International Coaching Federation. Currently, he is also an adjunct senior instructor of management at the School of Business at the University of Colorado, Denver, and adjunct senior instructor at the Colorado State University School of Business. Jim holds a doctorate in literature from the University of Denver.

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Barry McConnell

Senior Instructor

Barry McConnell is an instructor at the Jake Jabs Center for Entrepreneurship.

Arlen Meyers

Director of Bioentrepreneurship

Arlen Meyers is President and CEO of the Society of Physician Entrepreneurs, and a professor emeritus of otolaryngology, dentistry, and engineering at the University of Colorado School of Medicine and the Colorado School of Public Health. He is also the Director of the Biomedical Entrepreneurship program through the Jake Jabs Center.

Dr. Meyers has founded several medical device companies and conducts extensive research for biomedical and health innovation, and entrepreneurship and life science technology commercialization. His expertise in global bioentrepreneurship, education, and bioscience technology transfer led him to the Fulbright Specialist Roster in 2007. He was also invited to spend time at the NHS Innovation Office in Manchester and the Institute for Medical Devices at Strathclyde. Dr. Meyers has been named by Modern Healthcare as one of the 50 Most Influential Physician Executives of 2011 and nominated for Best Doctors 2013.

Dr. Meyers also holds the titles of associate editor of the Journal of Commercial Biotechnology and Technology Transfer and Entrepreneurship and editor-in-chief of Medscape Reference: Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery.

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Jung Park

Adjunct Instructor, Founder of Metroboom

Jung has over 15 years of consulting experience in design, branding, marketing, and business development.

Jung has leveraged his experience from his consulting to operate his own business ventures. Jung won the 1st place in 2004 University of Colorado at Denver Business Plan Competition and executed the plan by opening MetroBoom in 2005. MetroBoom is the original Personal Branding Center providing consulting, services and products to create and refine effective personal brands. Jung oversees all facets of the business from branding to operation.

Jung also maintains his business and corporate brand consulting practice for various clients; local/global businesses, start-ups, non-profits, etc.

As a professional speaker, Jung works with companies in various industries to empower their employees to create and refine their own personal brands. Jung has developed key notes and programs on personal branding for professionals. His main key note is titled "Discover Your North Star: Using Identity and Passion to Find Success" which is designed to provide guidance and tools for professionals on their journey to identifying their passion, goals, and brand identity. Jung also shares his message with college students by delivering his key note on campuses across the country.

Jung is an adjunct professor at Johnson and Wales University Denver campus offering his expertise on business, entrepreneurship, marketing, and fashion merchandising to the undergraduate students. At University of Colorado Denver, Jung teaches graduate level program on marketing, entrepreneurship and personal branding for the school of business and entrepreneurship center. Jung also serves as an advisory board member at the Jake Jabs Center for Entrepreneurship at UC Denver.

As fundraiser and counselor, Jung has been working with the Korean Heritage Camp, an organization for Korean adoptees and their families providing education on Korean culture, language, food, and history. Jung works closely with the high school campers on self-identity and cross-cultural issues. Jung also has been serving as a board member and a fundraiser for the Denver Harlequins Wheelchair Rugby team, assisting athletes with spinal cord injuries to find passion through the sport of rugby.

Jung was born in Seoul, South Korea and migrated to New York City when he was 13. He currently lives in Denver, Colorado with his wife and two young children.

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Madhavan Parthasarathy

Director, Jake Jabs Center for Entrepreneurship

Dr. Madhavan Parthasarathy is Jake Jabs Associate Professor of marketing and entrepreneurship at the University of Colorado Denver and is director of both the entrepreneurship program and the Jake Jabs Center for Entrepreneurship. He teaches Marketing Research, Marketing Management, and The Business Plan, at the Business School and the Jake Jabs Center.

Dr. Parthasarathy’s research interests focus on customer retention, switching and discontinuance behavior, cross-cultural research, and the diffusion of innovations. He has published in over 25 articles in noteworthy journals such asInformation Systems Research, International Marketing Review, Journal of Macromarketing, and the Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science.Dr. Parthasarathy has international entrepreneurship experience and was the co-founder of two small businesses in India, and one venture that involved multinational entrepreneurship.

Dr. Parthasarathy's goal is to provide a well-balanced yet challenging educational experience to students. In addition to a solid conceptual foundation, he brings in high-profile and experienced guest speakers, involves students with real-world case studies, and organizes projects that students often conduct for local companies. He also tries to encourage students to participate in networking events and other activities that make them more marketable to prospective employers. Finally, he makes the educational process an enjoyable experience for students because he firmly believes that one learns best when one is immersed in the subject matter.

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David Ruderman


David Ruderman has been an instructor in the Business School since 2009, and teaches a variety of courses, including Fundamentals of Entrepreneurship, Strategic Management, Leading Individuals and Teams, and Leveraging Cultural Diversity and Inclusion in Business. His focus is on creating practical and engaging courses which students can apply in their professional lives. In the entrepreneurial context, this involves imparting the practical skills necessary to aid aspiring entrepreneurs in the venture creation and business startup process. When not teaching, Mr. Ruderman serves as the faculty advisor for the Business Student Ambassador Committee (BSAC), a club supporting the Business School.

Mr. Ruderman holds an MBA with an emphasis in Entrepreneurship Studies from the University of Colorado Denver, and a BA in Broadcasting and Cable from the Pennsylvania State University. He is also a graduate of the Dale Carnegie Leadership Training for Managers Program, and is a Myers Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) Certified Practitioner.
In 2012, Mr. Ruderman was awarded the Outstanding Instructor Award at the Business School, and in 2013, was awarded the University of Colorado Denver Faculty Assembly Award for Outstanding Service.
Mr. Ruderman has 18 years of business experience in the fields of broadcast sales management, academic fundraising and entrepreneurship. He has worked for the United States Small Business Administration and consulted with a number of entrepreneurial upstarts in the Denver area. From 2010-2011, Mr. Ruderman served on the board of directors for PHAMALY – The Physically Handicapped Actors and Musical Artists League - where he headed their Strategic Development Committee. 

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Jan Rutherford


Jan has over 25 years of business experience and has held executive roles in business development, marketing, sales, training, product management, and as a CEO.

Jan entered the U.S. Army at age 17 (weighing 114 pounds) where he spent six years in Special Forces as a medic and “A” team executive officer, and three years as a military intelligence officer.

In 2011, Jan founded Self-Reliant Leadership, LLC– a leadership development firm focused on helping leaders and teams develop self-reliance to create powerful results through executive workshops, custom programs, coaching, and wilderness expeditions.

As a Senior Instructor at the University of Colorado Denver Business School for over a decade, Jan teaches ‘Leadership in New Ventures’ to MBA students and Doctor of Nursing Practice candidates. He also teaches ‘Leadership & Entrepreneurship in Ireland’ (delivered on-site in the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland) to business students.

As a professional speaker, Jan presents the self-reliant leadership principles contained in his book The Littlest Green Beret: On Self-Reliant Leadership to business leaders across the U.S. and Europe. Half the proceeds of Jan’s book are distributed to the Green Beret and Special Operations Warrior Foundations. He also serves as a Senior Advisory Council Member for the Colorado ESGR (a Department of Defense volunteer program) and as a Mentor & Advisory Group Member of the University of Colorado Denver Boots to Suits program.

Jan holds an MBA from the University of Phoenix, where his research focused on the effects of long-distance learning on job performance. He earned his undergraduate degree in Political Science from the University of South Florida, and was a Distinguished Military Graduate.

Jan is a dual U.S. and Irish citizen with a special affinity for Ireland and the wilderness of the Western United States.

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Manuel Serapio

Associate Professor of International Business and Entrepreneurship

Dr. Manuel Serapio, Jr., is an associate professor of management and international business and the program director of the MS in International Business. He also serves as the faculty director of the Center for International Business Education and Research at UCD.

Professor Serapio's research and teaching interests focus on international business, cross-border research and development, the globalization of services, and international entrepreneurship. He recently designed and developed the first faculty development program in international entrepreneurship (to be offered by the CIBERs at CU Denver and Indiana University). In 2001, Professor Serapio first developed and offered the international entrepreneurship course, with the objective of teaching international business from an entrepreneurial and deal-making perspective.

Dr. Serapio is the author/editor of three books, four technical reports for the US Department of Commerce and over a dozen articles. His publications have appeared in leading journals, such as Management International Review, Organizational Dynamics, Research Policy, Academy of Management Executive, Asian Business Management, IEEE Spectrum, and Research Technology Management. His work has been cited or published in The Financial Times, Entrepreneur Magazine, Investors Business Daily, The Rocky Mountain News, The Denver Business Journal, Nikkei Weekly (Japan), and The Los Angeles Times.

In addition to his teaching and research, Dr. Serapio has lectured for or consulted for international organizations and multinational companies in the US and Asia. These include IBM Corporation, Lockheed Martin, First Data, StorageTek, Molson Coors Brewing Company and others. He has also coauthored several grant applications that have received over $4 million in funding for UCD.

Dr. Serapio received a PhD in International Business from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, an MBA from the University of Hawaii and an undergraduate degree from Ateneo de Manila University, Philippines. He received

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Zsolt Silberer

Adjunct Instructor

Zsolt Silberer is an adjunct instructor at the Jake Jabs Center for Entrepreneurship.

Sam Thomas

Adjunct Professor

Sam Thomas is an adjunct instructor at the Jake Jabs Center for Entrepreneurship.

Eric Zinn


Eric Zinn currently runs a private tax law practice and is a part-time member of the CU Denver Accounting faculty, teaching four graduate tax classes: Tax Research (ACCT 6450), Advanced Individual Taxation (ACCT 6410), Partnership Taxation (ACCT 6480), and Advanced Partnership Taxation (ACCT 6482). Eric will be joining the CU Denver Accounting faculty full-time beginning August 2014. In his private practice, Eric originates, identifies, and implements business and tax planning structures to promote clients’ business needs with a focus on the use of partnership and corporate structures, mergers and acquisitions of corporate and non-corporate entities, and asset acquisitions and divestitures.

Eric began his tax law career in 1987 and has worked with judges at the United States Tax Court and with prominent law firms in Washington, D.C. and Denver, including King & Spalding, Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck and, most recently, Krendl Krendl Sachnoff & Way. He is admitted to practice before the United States Supreme Court, the United States Tax Court, the United States Courts of Appeals for the Tenth and Federal Circuits, the United States Court of Federal Claims, and the United States District Court for Colorado.

Eric is a member of the Colorado, Florida, and District of Columbia Bar Associations and of the American Bar Association. He is a former Vice Chair of the Executive Council of the National Association of State Bar Tax Sections and a former President of the Tax Section of the Colorado Bar Association. Eric is an adjunct faculty member at the School of Law of the University of Colorado, Boulder, a frequent lecturer for continuing legal education programs on various tax and corporate law topics, an author and co-author of numerous articles focusing on federal and state tax topics, and the sole author of Colorado Limited Liability Company—Forms and Practice Manual.

Eric holds three master’s degrees from the CU Denver Business School, including an MBA, MS in Information Systems, and MS in Finance. He also holds Master of Laws (LL.M.) in Taxation and Juris Doctor degrees from the University of Florida. His BA in Economics is from the University of the South.

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