MEET OUR CLIENTS: Santhanalakshmi Shanmugam, President of Minnodi LLC

There is an old saying, “Do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life.” Sometimes that means following a passion for helping others reach their dreams, too, and it’s the inspiration behind entrepreneur Santhanalakshmi Shanmugam’s labor of love, Minnodi, a Maryland-based IT/Pharma consulting and staffing agency. She says, “Entrepreneurs make a real contribution in the world. They are the ones who turn dreams into reality.” By applying her in-depth technology industry experience, including computer applications, graphic design and artificial intelligence (AI), to supporting other founders, creators and dreamers, Minnodi’s impact is magnified. That, she affirms, “makes all of our lives easier and more efficient.” “It’s really…

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Meet Our Clients: Dr. Yimeng Wang, Founder and CEO of ReVacc

Yimeng Wang, Ph.D., has contributed to infectious disease research for more than 15 years with publications in top tier journals, such as Science and Cell.  His publications reach the fields of influenza, HIV, RSV and Ebola. He also served as main inventor of U.S. provisional patent “Neutralizing Antibody Targeting the Marburg Virus Glycoprotein,” and has another patent related to Zika vaccine rational design in preparation. With the current COVID-19 pandemic, Yimeng decided to put years of experience in studying infectious diseases to work and start a business that might help dealing with this pandemic in a better way. Inspired by modern science of Reverse Vaccinology, ReVacc focuses on vaccine and…

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The Edge Accelerator – Week 0

What a start to the annual Frederick Innovative Technology Center, Inc. Edge Accelerator Program! Although the sessions will be held predominantly on Zoom for most of this summer, engaging in collaborative breakout sessions with founders is still as insightful as before. As a previous participant and current intern, it’s been rather thought-provoking to listen to early-stage entrepreneurs as they crafted their first lean canvas. Here are some of my takeaways. Vitamins vs. Painkillers Jonathan Boehman was one of my favorite mentors during last year’s session, and I was excited to see him back again to give an overview of the lean canvas. Among all of the practical insights he gave,…

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Meet Our Clients: VirIntel LLC

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected hundreds of thousands of people across the world. While we are taking important steps to slow the spread of the virus, there are many things that still need to be done in order to develop a vaccine. FITCI’s newest client, VirIntel, is performing very important research that will play a part in overcoming the COVID-19 pandemic. Founded on April 3rd, 2020 by CEO Illya Mazo, COO Vladimir Litvak, and CTO Yuliy Litvak VirIntel is working to develop a “specific and affordable blood test for the detection and characterization of the immune response to COVID-19.” As such, their test will serve to detect and measure anti-SARS-CoV-2…

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Meet Thomas Stein, Founder of Trivance Design, LLC

Tom Stein is a guy with lots of ideas who has always loved making things, and wanted to start his own business. Following the advice of a mentor to build on the idea with the most value, he founded Trivance Design, LLC which aims to improve human health by encouraging more students to pursue STEM careers. Trivance Design assembles open-source hardware and software into affordable science curricula, allowing students and faculty to 3D print living cells in their courses. While the courseware is proprietary, by offering open-source designs and packages built from off-the-shelf products, Tom hopes to make bioprinting accessible to students beyond elite, well-funded four-year universities, and make a…

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Meet Our Clients: Sue Carr, President of CarrTech, LLC

“If you can come up with a solution to this problem, you’ll be a millionaire.” While attending pharmacy school, Sue Carr worked in a hospital as a pharmacy technician, becoming quickly frustrated by the cumbersome process that follows when health-care providers break open glass ampules to dispense medication. Inevitably, glass shards must be filtered out with a filter needle. Once filtered, the needle full of glass shards must be recapped, removed and discarded. A new needle then must be attached to the syringe to dispense the medication. This becomes more than an inconvenience during emergencies or other situations where the filter needle is not used properly. Pulmonary embolism is one…

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Meet Our Clients: Jill Pecon-Slattery, President of Cornerstone Genomics LLC

As a kid, Dr. Jill Pecon-Slattery was in love with nature—frogs, butterflies, and all living things. A childhood spent outdoors exploring the natural world led, logically, to a career in science, although Jill’s path has had twists and turns. Initially, she wanted to be a marine field biologist; with a master’s degree in oceanography, Jill envisioned herself as the next Jacques Cousteau. She pivoted to human biomedicine and animal biology research, however, and over the course of her career, a significant insight emerged which ultimately spurred the creation of Cornerstone Genomics. Most researchers struggle with identifying which part of a DNA sequence is useful for their research problem. Her company…

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Meet Our Clients: Sage Winn, Co-Founder of Wander

Sage Winn was raised in Frederick County, so it was only natural that when he co-founded Wander, which sells all-natural hemp products, the shop would be located in downtown Frederick. Wander sources botanicals from an extraction expert, who extracts the hemp using food-grade ethanol. The hemp product is manufactured by hand, by Sage and his partners Simon Arendt and Charles Banks, for sale at the shop on South Market Street. With Wander, Sage has combined his experience with a Washington, D.C. lab that processed cannabis edibles and as a chef of 10 course tasting menus in New York and San Francisco.  The three owners aim to connect with their customers…

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Meet our Clients: Karl Hindle, Founder of Wellspring Search

Karl Hindle is an “accidental immigrant” originally from Manchester, England, who has always been something of an athletic nerd. Being good at sports led him first to the army, followed by college and an early career in accounting. His natural ebullience had him pivot to a career in sales, and when the early days of the Internet arrived, he was quickly hooked—and self-taught– on digital. He hasn’t looked back since. Wellspring Search, a full-service digital marketing agency and lead generation machine, is Karl’s manifestation of building his own dream.  Started two years ago in his hot tub room, Wellspring has grown rapidly and been profitable right out of the gate.…

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Meet Our Clients: Pierre Reed, Founder of PMTR Industries

Dr. Pierre Reed loves cyber. Really, really, loves cyber. “If I won the lottery, I’d do it for free” says the founder of PMTR Industries, a cybersecurity service business based in Frederick. “It’s constantly changing and requires adaptive skills to remain at the top of the field.” Dr. Reed was introduced to cyber when he began his career with the U.S. Army Signal Corps. After four years in the military, he moved to US Sprint as a network engineer and from there developed his expertise in governance, policy development, medical device security, secure wireless networking, and proposal writing for a variety of government agencies and contractors, private industry clients, and…

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