EDC is guided by a Board of Directors comprised of highly regarded business professionals who take an active role in the strategic direction of our organization, as well as directly support EDC entrepreneurs with the services they need to be positioned for success.

Our board members are some of our most valuable assets, and we are extremely proud to partner with them to help start-ups navigate opportunity.

For details on how you can get involved with EDC or become a board member, please contact Rob Strandberg, president and CEO at rstrandberg@edc-tech.org.


Louis Balbirer

Principal, Kaufman, Rossin & Co

Mr. Balbirer has more than 20 years of comprehensive tax experience with national and large regional firms where I provide tax compliance, planning, preparation and transaction consulting for a variety of industry groups such as government contracting, technology companies, professional service firms and commercial real estate ventures, as well as high net worth individuals. The vast majority of Mr. Balbirer’s experience in these areas is with complex, multi-state businesses. Mr. Balbirer also consults for client acquisitions, conduct due diligence studies and provides a variety of additional services to project tax implications for corporate activities.

Prior to joining Argy, Mr. Balbirer was a Senior Tax Consultant with Deloitte and Touche, LLP. During that time, his responsiblities included directing and reviewing tax consulting and compliance engagements and providing tax preparation and consulting services to consolidated financial institutions, S-corporations and tiered real estate partnerships.

Before entering public accounting, Mr. Balbirer spent four years in the banking industry providing a variety of accounting services, including over two years auditing individual banks throughout Maryland.

Michael Byrne

Michael Byrne, CEO of Emphasys Software

Michael Byrne has been Chief Executive Officer, Emphasys Computer Solutions Inc. since August 2003. Mr. Byrne joined Emphasys in March 2002 as Vice President of Operations. Mr. Byrne served as a Director at Trapeze Operating Group, where he was in charge of product management and professional services. He has a Bachelor of Commerce degree from McMaster University.

Emphasys Software provides an array of software solutions and related services to thousands of entities in the public and private sectors, including affordable housing agencies, local municipalities, real estate brokers and agents and financial lenders.

From its beginnings over 35 years ago, Emphasys has grown to encompass four divisions – Public Housing, Housing Finance, Treasury & Debt Management and Real Estate – with offices in California, Michigan, Florida and Ontario.

Joshua Sheradsky

Joshua Sheradsky

Joshua Sheradsky, Commercial Lender, BB&T Bank

Mr. Sheradsky is a Commercial Lender at BB&T Bank in Fort Lauderdale. Previous experience include portfolio management for BB&T, where Mr. Sharadsky underwrote all renewals and annual reviews for the bank’s clients, and managed, along with with a Regional COrporate Banker, an $850MM loan and deposit portfolio. While at BB&T, areas of focus also included supporting Senior Credit Officer in FED and FDIC risk analysis projects.

Mr. Sheradsky is a graduate from Emory University’s Goizueta Business School with a BBA in Finance, Management & Organization, & Business Law.

Doug Mccraw

Doug McCraw

Doug McCraw, Founder, Peregrine Partners Group

Doug McCraw is the founder of Peregrine Partners Group, a real estate development and management company in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Mr. McCraw is a managing partner of Tropical Storage LLC that develops high-end niche self-storage facilities in South Florida. He is the past founder and President of Data Archive Services, Inc in Ft Lauderdale, FL. A native of Tuscaloosa, Alabama, Mr. McCraw earned his BS in marketing at The University of Alabama. His civic affiliations include: the Executive Committee of New World Angels in South Florida, the Acquisitions Committee of the Ft. Lauderdale Museum of Art, the President’s Club at UA, past co-chairman of UA’s International Trade Advisory Board, past Vice Chairman of the American Red Cross of Broward County, Alabama Board of Regents for State Parks, and Birmingham Museum of Art Collectors Circle.

adam marano

Adam Marano

Adam Marano, Senior Director Technical Solutions Development, Citrix Systems

Mr. Marano is currently Senior Director Technical Solutions Development at Citrix Systems, where he analyzes Citrix partner solutions and makes recommendations on how to increase the value of integrated solutions with partners and the core Citrix solution.

At Citrix, Mr. Marano also provides strong market and technical guidance to the partner account managment team for key partners, as well as interfaces with the engineering team on key potential partner initiatives.

Mr. Marano is a graduate of Florida Atlantic University, in engineering, as well as West Virginia University (BS, Computer Science).

Mark Arnold

Mark Arnold, Director of Business Development, Stansberry Research

Immediate Past Chair, EDC Executive Committee

Mark Arnold is a corporate transactional attorney primarily focused on mergers and acquisitions, private equity and venture capital transactions, and general corporate matters. He has experience in securities issues and other corporate finance transactions representing both public and private companies in domestic and international matters.

Mr. Arnold is currently Director of Business Development at Stansberry Research, an independent investment research firm, with subscribers in more than 100 different countries.

Mr. Arnold has been actively involved in bar associations at the national, state and local levels. At the national level, he served as District Representative for the State of Florida to the American Bar Association Young Lawyers Division. At the state level, he is a former member of the Board of Governors of The Florida Bar Young Lawyers Division and has served as the Vice Chairman of the Student Education and Admissions to the Bar Committee for The Florida Bar. Mr. Arnold is also a member of the Corporations, Securities and Financial Services Committee of The Florida Bar and has served as a member of the Board of Directors of the Dade County Young Lawyers Section and its executive committee.

Mr. Arnold graduated Cum Laude from Duke University with an A.B. in Public Policy Studies in 1994. He also obtained his JD, with honors, and an MBA from the University of Florida in 1998.


Gregg Rusk

Gregg Rusk, Audit Services Partner and Director, Grant Thornton

Gregg Rusk is an Audit Services partner and director of Grant Thornton’s South Florida International Business Center. He has more than 20 years of experience in public accounting, with a special emphasis on international clients. Rusk began his career in the Chicago office and worked with public and privately held companies. He spent two years overseas at Grant Thornton UK LLP, where he was heavily involved in European acquisitions by U.S. clients and U.S. public market activity for foreign companies. Upon his return to the United States, Rusk became the director of the International Business Center in Chicago and resumed servicing audit clients.

He relocated to South Florida in 1998. He has worked with public and private clients of all sizes, ranging from startups to the Fortune 500. His experience includes assisting clients with raising capital through IPOs, secondary offerings and private offerings, as well as acquisition due diligence.

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Ron Antevy

Ron Antevy, President & CEO, e-Builder

Ron Antevy teamed up with his brother Jon in 1998 to lead the company.  Under his leadership,    e-Builder has consistently grown over 30% per year – profitably and without debt. Prior to e-Builder, Ron held various senior management positions in the construction and environmental services industries, including regional Director of Operations for Waste Management, where he managed 19 facilities with 200 employees and annual revenues in excess of $150 million. Ron is a graduate of the University of Florida College of Engineering, with a Bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering. He is member of the American Society of Civil Engineers and a registered Professional Engineer in the state of Florida.  Ron is a member of the Board of Directors of the Enterprise Development Corporation of South Florida and the Software Division of the Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA).


Howard Gitten

Howard Gitten, Counsel at Edwards Wildman Palmer LP 

Chair, EDC Executive Committee

Having worked both in-house at a cutting edge photonics company, and in private practice, Howard brings a unique perspective to technology law. He brings a business perspective to technology issues and his technology background to business issues. As a registered patent attorney, Howard knows how best to protect a client’s unique assets, make them marketable and use intellectual property for competitive advantage. Howard has advised his clients in instituting cradle-to-grave IP regimes, to licensing IP and building joint development programs around a client’s IP.

Howard’s clients have ranged from basement tinkerers to privately held start-ups to Fortune 100 companies throughout the world. He counsels across a range of technologies including cloud computing, lasers, fiber optics, nanotechnology including MEMS devices and manufacture thereof, toys, RF identification devices, laboratory support equipment, catheters and other medical devices, and computer software and hardware, including printer architectures, computer hibernation protocols, encryption techniques, and optical scanning and displays. In addition to protecting technology, Howard advises his clients when navigating the treacherous waters of other’s property rights through the conducting of patent and trademark validity and infringement investigations.

Howard is certified by The Florida Bar as a specialist in Intellectual Property Law. This certification is the first in Intellectual Property Law in the United States. He is a member of the first class of Board Certified Intellectual Property Attorneys in Florida.

Miami Marketing Agency

Jacques Hart

Jacques Hart, Co-founder and CEO at Roar Media

Jacques Hart is co-founder and CEO of Roar Media, an integrated marketing-communications and digital-communications consultancy. He specializes in helping traditional companies transform their legacy business operations and marketing programs into next-generation platforms that help increase market share, conversions and revenues.

Jacques is nationally known in digital and earned media for his focus on delivering winning results during more than 15 years of providing strategic counsel to leading Internet enterprises and Fortune 500 companies. For Jacques, the key is a bias for media-agnostic programs, focus on quality customer and user experiences, along with innovative ideas, quantitative analysis and effective communication.

As CEO of Roar Media, he integrates advanced Internet marketing strategies, including social marketing, search engine optimization and blogger relations, into clients’ traditional marketing programs.

A graduate of the University of Washington’s School of Business with a degree in marketing and advertising, Jacques served in the U.S. Peace Corps as a business-development volunteer helping establish local businesses. His hobbies include exercise, skiing, road-biking, cooking, travel, playing electric guitar, social networking and staying abreast of Internet developments. Jacques is a board member of the MIT Enterprise Forum and The South Florida Technology Alliance, and an honorary member of the Wharton Club of South Florida.

To learn more, visit Roar Media.


Jack Karabees

Jack Karabees, Vice President of Sales and Marketing

Karabees has spent the past 25 years successfully establishing and executing high-growth sales and marketing plans for enterprise analytics and automation-focused technology companies, initially in manufacturing and supply chain and growing to encompass healthcare, hospital and large commercial real estate operations. Jack currently serves as Vice President of Sales and Marketing with Entic, a unique energy-specific technology platform designed to analyze and optimize consumption in all energy-consuming systems within any large enterprise.

Most recently, Jack was Executive Vice President of Operations and Sales with Itopia, www.itopia.us, a cloud-based, rapid deployment platform for both cloud-enabled infrastructure and enterprise software applications. Prior to joining Itopia, Karabees was President and CEO of Consult A Doctor, www.consultadoctor.com, an enterprise healthcare technology and services company from start-up through their successful acquisition by Kleiner Perkins-backed Teladoc. Mr. Karabees previously held the titles of Executive Vice President for Hudson Capital, www.hudcap.com, a $1 Billion+ investment and real estate development firm, Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing of eLabor, from start-up through acquisition by ADP, as well as Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing for Enterprise Project through its acquisition by Microsoft.

Mr. Karabees served honorably in the United States Air Force and is a contributor to and Board Member of the Enterprise Development Corporation of Florida, www.edc-tech.org. He is also the Co-Founder of the Miami Innovation Fund, dedicated to funding seed-stage companies in Miami and Dade County, FL.

Mr. Karabees served honorably in the United States Air Force and is the Co-Founder of the Miami Innovation Fund, dedicated to funding seed-stage companies in Miami and Dade County, FL.


Gregory A. Nelson

Gregory A. Nelson, Partner at Novak Druce Connolly Bove + Quigg

Gregory A. Nelson represents clients in all phases of patent, trademark and copyright law, including prosecution, licensing and litigation. Mr. Nelson’s clients include a number of Fortune 100 companies and universities whom he assists in developing patent strategies related to biotechnology, chemistry, materials science, and computer and internet technology.

Mr. Nelson has extensive experience in the biosciences area, where he represents a number of universities and a national laboratory in obtaining, evaluating, and licensing patents. Mr. Nelson is also very active in BioFlorida, Florida’s independent statewide bioscience organization, serving on the Board of Directors and as the Secretary and General Counsel of the 2007 Executive Committee. He also co-chaired BioFlorida’s 2005 and 2006 AnnualConference SteeringCommittees and is a past chair and member of the Executive Committee of the Enterprise Development Council. Mr. Nelson is a founding member and past chair of the Florida Chapter of the Licensing Executives Society and a frequent lecturer, panelist and moderator on intellectual property topics. For the third consecutive year Mr. Nelson has been named a Florida Super Lawyer for Intellectual Property Law, 2010-2012 and has been listed a Best Lawyers in America®, 2011.