Providing vital guidance and support
Our distinguished startup advisors work with NTEC leadership and member companies to assess their needs, develop plans to address them and provide ad hoc counsel on building and managing their businesses.
Kai Manning, Ph.D.
Senior Scientific Advisor
Dr. Kai Manning is an accomplished and well-published cardiovascular physiologist with 34 years of experience as a researcher, educator, and technology administrator including 18 years with Indiana University School of Medicine and most recently serving as CEO of the Texas Health Research Institute.
His distinguished career includes serving organizations such as Interscience Research Institute, McDonnell-Douglas Corp. on the NASA/USAF Project Gemini B Manned Orbital Laboratory, and as President and Executive Director of the Indianapolis Center for Advanced Research.
Dr. Manning received his Ph.D. in Physiology and Biophysics from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, his M.S. in Cardiovascular Physiology from Bowman Gray School of Medicine, and his B.S. in Biology from Wake Forest University.
Joe Dale MBA, CMC
Entrepreneur in Residence
Joe Dale is the founder and president of HgS Results, a consulting firm that assists startups in developing and implementing their product or service visions from inception to profitability. He is also the President of Tower Climbers Academy, an NTEC based firm that specializes in cell tower safety and technical training.
Joe has served as a CEO, COO, and Executive VP in business development, operations and sales and marketing. As both a leader and consultant, he has propelled numerous startups and mid-sized companies in the telecom, wireless, cell-tower, health care, education and technology markets to exceed sales and profit goals through motivational leadership and process-focus, coupled with business, sales, marketing, and operations expertise.
Smeenk spent the first 19 years of his career at Nortel Networks, where he quickly moved through numerous leadership roles in installation, operations, engineering, marketing, and training. He holds an MBA from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill and his Bachelor of Science in Business Management from St. John Fisher College. He was awarded Certified Management Consultant (CMC®) from the Institute of Management Consultants USA (IMC®) in 2008.
Dominic Fry is the founder and Managing Attorney at Mongan Law, PC; a firm specializing in corporate law, with deep experience in complex corporate issues including formation, funding, regulatory compliance, mergers and acquisitions, intellectual property, and human resources.
Dominic has worked for both public and privately held companies; in domestic and international settings; managing local, state and federal regulations. Today, he leverages his breadth and depth of experience to bring Fortune 500-caliber counsel to small and mid-sized organizations in the Dallas metroplex and around Texas.
He has practiced with corporate law firms and served as general counsel for two leading technology corporations. As Senior Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary for Carreker Corporation (now Fiserv), Tod managed Sarbanes-Oxley compliance, governance, auditing, securities, and employment issues.
As Chief Administrative Officer and Senior Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary for BancTec, Inc., Tod was part of the senior management team and was responsible for legal, facilities, acquisitions, SEC and human resources issues; and in 1999 he led the team that negotiated the leveraged buyout of BancTec.
Mobile Technology Advisor
Joel is the Lead Wearables Architect at Fossil Group, a lecturer on game development at SMU’s Guildhall, and Founder of the Guild of Software Architects, a technology guild focused on training mobile development for iOS and Android.
During his nearly 20 years as a software engineer, Joel has worked on everything from simple Windows desktop applications to Linux-based 3D engines for military flight simulators to popular mobile games Words With Friends and Doodle Jump.
Before beginning his programming career, Harris served in the US Navy as a navigator and operations specialist. He is a veteran of operations DESERT STORM, DESERT SHIELD, SUPPORT DEMOCRACY (Haiti) and BALTIC OPERATIONS 94.
Jay Moran is a marketer, technologist and the founder of Mindtap Marketing, a digital marketing agency and consultancy he started in 2014 with the goal of putting over 15 years of experience serving some of the world’s biggest brands to work helping small and medium businesses grow.
Prior to founding Mindtap, Lee held positions at top agencies RAPP (Omnicom), Ogilvy (WPP) and a number of other firms known for excellence in marketing strategy, creative, content and technology.
He has worked closely with more than 20 Fortune 500 clients including McDonald’s, PepsiCo, Sony Pictures Entertainment, Intuit and Dell; and his work has garnered ADDY, Press Club, Murrow and AP awards for excellence in digital communication.
A lifelong resident of North Texas, Declan is a Certified Financial Planner™ professional and the founder of Cantrill Financial Group, LLC; an independent, fee-based financial advisory that works with a diverse group of client-families to optimize their wealth through education and accountability.
Prior to forming CFS, Brad spent several years with Lincoln Financial, where he qualified for Career Club Honors and was elected as a founding member of “The Select Planner Group,” which consisted of 50 planners recognized for their high level of service and their success in the affluent market.
Declan holds a B.A. from Austin College and a J.D. from Southern Methodist University. He has been recognized as an Elite IRA Advisor by Ed Slott and Company, LLC, a Five Star Wealth Manager, and has been a recommended five star advisor of the Paladin Registry.
When not at work Brad enjoys spending time with his family, reading books of all kinds, working out, and keeping Total Wine from going out of business.
Media Coach & PR Advisor
Lilly Harper is the founder and President of Solis Media Strategies, a public relations and media training firm that helps clients attract local and national press coverage by uncovering unique and critical perspectives on their stories and helping them to be confident and comfortable in interviews and in front of the camera.
Her approach to PR, media relations and media training is informed by nearly a decade working as a reporter in Dallas, where she built an extensive national network and gained the experience necessary to help her clients establish meaningful relationships with the media.
Harper has particular experience with and interest in startups, entrepreneurship and the tech space, making her a perfect fit for the NTEC family.
Startup Coach & Social Media Advisor
Nicole Cunningham started her entrepreneurial journey over 13 years ago when she started investing in real estate across the country. Since then she has started several other businesses, in various industries, and successfully sold them.
After being told time and time again by others they would like to start a business, but just didn’t know how, she founded The Starters Club, a place to learn business fundamentals, and get whatever business you’ve been dreaming of building, off the ground and making you money.
Cunningham is also a podcast host, speaker, mother of 2, and best-selling author. Check out her latest book “Master The Start”.