Charles Sheedy, Observer, has over five decades of experience at Fayez Sarofim & Co., a global investment management firm with over $20 billion under management.  He is currently serves as Senior Vice President, managing investment portfolios for a variety of institutional and high net worth clients, as well as a member of the Investment Committee and a board member of Sarofim Trust Co. Charles received an M.B.A from Harvard Business School and graduated cum laude from the University of Notre Dame.

Kala Marathi, Co-Founder & Director, is the Managing Director of the Cougar Venture Fund, a Lecturer in Venture Capital Investing at the University of Houston, and COO of Skypoint Capital, an investment firm that focuses on income producing assets.  She has more than 20 years of operating and financial experience.

In her role as Managing Director of the Houston Angel Network, Kala has facilitated over $30M in investments in 85 deals and co-founded the Texas Halo Fund.  Kala was a founding member of Reliant Energy Net Ventures, the corporate venture arm of Reliant Energy.  At Reliant, she led several smart grid pilots and technology initiatives, and launched a subsidiary called Texas Star Energy.  She also has extensive experience in strategy and corporate finance with such firms as Continental Airlines and Chase. 

Kala has served on the Board of Directors of the Texas Lyceum and the National Association of Women MBAs (Houston Chapter), and served as co-chair of the HX Cybersecurity Technology Committee.  Kala has B.A. in Japanese and Economics from Wellesley College, and an MBA from the Amos Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College.

Upendra Marathi, PhD, MBA, President & CEO, is the founder, investor, and an inventor of 7HP technology. He has led the development of three novel pain and cardiovascular drugs, including one which has recently been approved by the FDA. He co-developed one of the first genetically modified stem cells to improve bone marrow function in chemotherapeutic patients.  As a venture capitalist, he was involved in the founding and launch of several biotechnology companies.  He has helped raise over $50 million in equity financing.  Upendra was a post-doctoral fellow at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, and earned a Ph.D. in Pharmacology from Loyola University Chicago.  Upendra has an M.B.A. from Rice University and has served as a faculty member.

Corporate Board

Joseph Bailes, MD, Advisor & Director, is a medical oncologist with substantial experience in legislation, public policy and advocacy, as well as the business aspects of the practice of oncology and medicine. Dr. Bailes has served in various executive leadership capacities for the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO), including terms as President, Interim Executive Vice President and Chief Executive Officer, and Chair of the ASCO Government Relations Council. He has also served as the Executive Vice President of Clinical Affairs for US Oncology, Inc. Dr. Bailes received his medical degree from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical School at Dallas.

Stephen A. Bent, Director, is a retired partner with Foley & Lardner LLP. He was a member of the Chemical, Biotechnology & Pharmaceutical Practice and the Health Care and Nanotechnology Industry Teams. He is the founder and a former co-chair of the Life Sciences Industry Team. Stephen counseled clients on intellectual property disputes and the legal issues associated with pharmaceutical and biotechnology asset valuation and management, venture capital, licensing and technology transfer, and corporate acquisitions. He was a principal in the firm’s China initiative.