A venture capitalist, a digital media entrepreneur, a corporate lawyer, a university president, and a senior financial executive are the newest additions to Innovacorp's board of directors.

The new appointments are:

  • Jeff Grammer, partner at Rho Canada Ventures
  • Rodney F. Burgar, president and CEO of Accelerator Inc.
  • Kirsten Tomilson, president and CEO of Fourth Monkey Media
  • Richard Florizone, president of Dalhousie University
  • William (Bill) Gullage, president of W. R. Gullage Consulting Inc.

"It’s quite a lineup we have on our board. We have marvellous representation from private industry, the public sector and academia, and many members have been or are entrepreneurs,” said Jacquelyn Thayer Scott, Innovacorp board chair. “I’m eager to have the five new members help guide Innovacorp’s strategy."

"As an investor, I’ve been getting to know what’s happening in this region’s start-up scene over the last few years,” said Mr. Grammer. “It’s an exciting time for the start-up community here and organizations like Innovacorp play a critical role in building on the momentum.

“I hope to help Innovacorp further improve its impact on technology innovation, entrepreneurship and commercialization in Nova Scotia."

Mr. Grammer has 28 years of operational and venture experience. As a partner with Rho Canada Ventures since 2006, he focuses on investments in new media, information technology and communications companies. Prior to joining Rho, Mr. Grammer worked at Intel, Chips and Technologies, N*Able Technologies, and Ember Corporation. His venture capital experience also includes Techfarm and Sigma Partners.

Mr. Burgar spent 30 years as a corporate lawyer specializing in technology company formation, corporate finance, management and governance. He has an excellent track record in negotiating the terms of significant transactions on behalf of technology companies and venture capital investors. In his current role at the helm of Accelerator Inc., Mr. Burgar provides strategic advice to senior executives who are leading their organizations through periods of change.

Ms. Tomilson’s career began in the high-pressure world of film and television as a producer of award-winning content. She went on to become the senior production manager for a large video game producer of numerous popular console titles, and later produced and managed a number of branded online educational games. Ms. Tomilson’s Lunenburg-based digital media company, Fourth Monkey Media, develops visually stunning, high quality games for platforms such as Facebook, iOS, Android and Windows Mobile.

Prior to signing on at Dalhousie, Mr. Florizone was vice president of finance and resources at the University of Saskatchewan, where he was also a policy fellow in the Johnson-Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy. He earned his PhD in physics from MIT and was a senior adviser to the World Bank Group’s International Finance Corporation in Washington, D.C. Mr. Florizone has served in roles with Bombardier Aerospace, Cambridge University and the Boston Consulting Group.

Mr. Gullage is a seasoned senior financial executive with international experience in the areas of raising capital, board governance, financial reporting for private and public companies, forecasting and planning. He offers part-time CFO services to start-ups and small companies. Mr. Gullage has helped raise capital, from debt to equity, across Canada, New York and Hong Kong, for public and private companies in the IT and biotechnology sectors.

As of March 2015, members of Innovacorp's board of directors are:

  • Chair: Jacquelyn Thayer Scott, principal, ResourceWorks Consulting; past president Cape Breton University & Professor, Shannon School of Business
  • Rodney F. Burgar, president and CEO, Accelerator Inc.
  • Simon d'Entremont, deputy minister, Economic and Rural Development and Tourism
  • Richard Florizone, president, Dalhousie University
  • Jeff Grammer, partner, Rho Canada Ventures
  • William (Bill) Gullage, president, W. R. Gullage Consulting Inc.
  • Chris Huskilson, president and CEO, Emera Inc.
  • George McLellan, deputy minister, Department of Finance and Treasury Board
  • Robert McCharles, president, McCharles Environmental Services Ltd.
  • Susan McIsaac, partner, McIsaac Darragh Chartered Accountants
  • Kirsten Tomilson, president and CEO, Fourth Monkey Media

(Read the full bios for all members here:  www.innovacorp.ca/team)

Innovacorp is Nova Scotia's early stage venture capital organization and works to find, fund and foster innovative Nova Scotia start-ups. Target industries include information technology, life sciences, clean technology and oceans technology.

Early stage investment is at the core of Innovacorp’s business model, but it also provides hands-on business advisory services, tailored to meet the unique – and evolving – needs of each of the promising technology companies in its portfolio. It also gives entrepreneurs access to world-class incubation facilities and an international network of expert advisors.

For more information, contact:

Dawn House
902.424.8674 ext 1189

Nova Scotia, March 9, 2015