Co-founder & Co-Executive Director
Ryan worked as a Medical Device & Diagnostics Research Analyst for 12 years for such firms as Jefferies LLC, SunTrust Robinson Humphrey, Adams Harkness & Hill, CIBC World Markets and Roth Capital LLC.
After leaving Wall Street, Ryan started his own consulting firm providing strategic advice to various emerging growth medical companies. Ryan also served as President and Chief Operating Officer at Transcription Factor Therapeutics, Inc. Ryan graduated with honors from Yale University in 1995.
For the past few years, Ryan has been traveling around the world with his wife and three young children trying to find ways to donate his time and resources. Ryan, his wife Emily and three young children have a home in Spain but they spend the majority of their time traveling abroad. Ryan is a co-founder and the Executive Director of Luena Foundation.
Co-founder & Co-Executive Director
Emily previously worked as a Medical Technology Equity Research Analyst and Corporate Finance Analyst for various investment banks, including Jefferies LLC, WR Hambrecht + Co and Lehman Brothers.
Prior to her time on Wall Street, she was a DJ in Connecticut and New York City. She holds a B.A. from New York University. She currently resides in El Gastor, a tiny Andalucian pueblo in the south of Spain. Emily is the co-founding Executive Director and Secretary for Luena Foundation.
ESTRELLA VELA FERNANDEZ
Estrella is a lifelong resident of El Gastor and is Luena’s mother. After suffering a debilitating spinal cord injury, she began working for the Organización Nacional de Ciegos Españoles (ONCE), an organization that generates more than 80,000 jobs for the disabled. Prior to working for ONCE, she domesticated horses and worked in agriculture. Estrella is an honorary board member of the Luena Foundation.
ELIAS TROSO TONDELA
Elias, a resident of El Gastor, is Luena’s father. He originally hails from Luanda, Angola and immigrated to Lisbon, Portugal 1992 in order to continue his studies. In Spain, he currently works in construction and is pursuing a certification in Renewable Energy Solutions. Elias is an honorary board member of the Luena Foundation.
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Executive Vice President of Strategy at Penumbra, Inc.
Jason Mills is the Executive Vice President of Strategy at Penumbra, Inc., an Alameda, California-based medical device company, which is a global leader in the development of innovative therapies in neurological, vascular and virtual reality.
Prior to joining Penumbra, Jason was a publishing sell-side analyst with coverage of the medical technology industry for over 20 years. In addition to serving as Head of US Healthcare Research at Canaccord Genuity, Jason’s specific research coverage focus is on the sectors of Cardiovascular, Imaging/Robotics, Ophthalmology and Women’s Healthcare. Jason joined Canaccord Genuity as Managing Director and Senior Medical Devices analyst in 2007, coming to the firm from First Albany Capital where he was managing director and senior medical devices analyst since 2003. He had previously served as a vice president and senior med-tech analyst with Thomas Weisel Partners (now part of Stifel), and has earned awards for his stock picking, including the #2 ranked Medical Devices analyst in the The Wall Street Journal’s 2011 ‘Best on the Street’ Survey and #1 in the Medical Products segment of Forbes 2010 Best Brokerage Analysts.
Jason holds a BA in Economics from Yale University and Master degree from Ohio University. Mr. Mills is currently acting as Treasurer for the Luena Foundation.
Founding Partner and Chairman of the Investment Committee at Atlas Merchant Capital LLC
David Schamis is Founding Partner and Chairman of the Investment Committee at Atlas Merchant Capital LLC, an investment firm, and is based in New York. Previously, David worked at J.C. Flowers from 2000 to 2014, most recently as Managing Director and member of the Management Committee. He joined J.C. Flowers at its inception and has had significant experience investing in North America, South America, Europe and Asia. His day-to-day responsibilities include transaction and sourcing execution, portfolio company monitoring and firm operations. Prior to J.C. Flowers, David worked in the financial institutions investment banking group at Solomon Smith Barney LLC from 1995 to 2000.
David is currently a member of the Board of Directors of South Street Securities Holdings, Inc., Panmure, Gordon & Co. PLC, Ascensus, LLC and Talcott Resolution. In 2007 and 2008, Investment Dealers Digest magazine named David to its “40 Under 40” list.
A native of Plainview, New York, David earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics from Yale University. He served as co-chairman of the Class of 1995’s Reunion Gift Committees in 2005, 2010, 2015 and 2020. Mr. Schamis is currently a member of the board of Yale College Alumni Fund. He remains active in his community and has coached football and lacrosse at various levels.
Founder and Chief Executive Officer at UbiDX
Kate is the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of UbiDX, an a startup company developing a novel home diagnostic and disease monitoring platform for infectious and chronic diseases.
Kate was also the cofounder of Israel-based MEDX Xelerator, a medical device and digital health incubator with Boston Scientific, Sheba Hospital and MEDX Ventures. She led led the biomedical startup practice for the Invention Science Fund at Intellectual Ventures as inventor and executive leading new company creation in the fund.
She brings 18 years of capital markets experience in investment banking and equity research specializing in medical technology as well as 5 years of strategic business strategy consulting working with startup ventures as well as pubic companies on business strategy, M&A and institutional investor relations programs.
Chief Financial Officer at Gopuff
Ted Stedem is the CFO of Gopuff, a market leader in instant commerce, with a national network of fulfillment centers that focus on rapid delivery. Prior to his current role, Ted served as Chief Financial Officer at Panera Brands from 2019 to 2022, where he led all aspects of the finance function as well as International Development. Prior to Panera, Ted spent 2 years building the global finance team at WeWork where he served as the Global Business and Financial Operations.
Ted served in a number of leadership roles for Yum Brands since 2009, including Chief Financial Officer of Yum China and General Manager and Managing Director of KFC Asia. Prior to joining YUM, he worked in finance, business development and marketing roles with Merrill Lynch, Bain Consulting and Office Depot.