Join us as we hear Dr. Jerald Dawkin's entrepreneurial journey co-founding two security companies and co-authoring multiple patents. Bring your questions to ask a visionary CISO during our Q&A session.
Where: Virtual - RSVP for an invite!
When: Thursday, August 27, 5:30 - 7:30 PM CST
What is Startup Grind: Startup Grind is a global startup community designed to educate, inspire, and connect entrepreneurs.
Our monthly fireside chat provides ample opportunities to connect with amazing startups and the people behind them, tap into a strong support network, form meaningful connections, and gain inspiration for the startup journey ahead.
True Digital Security
Co-Founder & CISO
Dr. Jerald Dawkins is the CISO of True Digital Security. His elite combination of security in technology expertise, business acumen, and creativity has positioned him as a driver in the evolution of the field of information security and compliance. Jerry is the author of numerous publications, presents at conferences, and he co-founded another successful security company, TokenEx.
Dr. Jerald Dawkins is the CISO of True Digital Security. His elite combination of security in technology expertise, business acumen, and creativity has positioned him as a driver in the evolution of the field of information security and compliance. Jerry has extensive experience in regulatory compliance, technical risk assessments, penetration testing, web application folder ability analysis and secure coding.
Jerry is the author of numerous publications and presents at national and international conferences and he co-founded another successful security company, TokenEx. He also holds the following certifications: CISSP, NSA IAM, and CNSS 4011-4015. Jerry received his B.A. in computer Science from Fort Lewis College in Durango, CO and his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Computer Science from The University of Tulsa in Tulsa, OK.
Director of Entrepreneurial Development
Oklahoma Life Science Fund
Dee Hays, P.E. is the Founder and CEO of Excellence Engineering, LLC. Dee earned her Bachelor of Science degree from Kansas State University in the late 80’s, and graduated in 2017 from the OPM program at Harvard Business School. Dee is a board certified Professional Engineer licensed in 38 states and maintains a model law status with the National Council of Professional Engineers.
Dee is an accomplished CEO and has received numerous awards and distinctions throughout the years.
- 2020 ‐ Named one of Oklahoma’s Most Admired CEO’s.
- 2016, 2017 and 2018 ‐ Nominated for Oklahoma Women of the Year and named one of “50 Making a Difference” by the Journal Record
- 2018 – Inducted into the Oklahoma Women of the Year Circle of Excellence by the Journal Record
- 2014 ‐ Honored with the Enterprising Women of the Year Award by EW Magazine
While working as an engineer, Dee founded Excellence Engineering in 2001 with the primary focus on delivering to clients a better engineered package for their projects, providing boutique quality support, and building a team that excels in passion and talents. Excellence Engineering, LLC has grown to a multi‐discipline engineering firm providing turnkey projects from concept through operational completion. Excellence Engineering received national certification as a Women’s Business Enterprise by the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC) in 2013 and is WOSB and HubZone certified by the US government in 2015.
Under Dee’s direction and vision, Excellence Engineering has gained many awards and recognition including:
- American Express list of 50 Fastest Growing Women‐Owned businesses in the world in 2014, 2015 and 2016.
- #285 on the distinguished Inc. 500 list for 2014, and has continued to be on the Inc. 5000 list for 2015, 2016 and 2017.
- Nominated by the esteemed Oil and Gas Awards and was runner up as the Southwest Region’s Engineering Company of the year 2014.
- #1 fastest growing privately held company in Tulsa by The Journal Record in 2014.
Dee is a member of; The prestigious Women Presidents’ Organization, Women’s Business Council –Southwest, WBEA/South Texas and South, Society of Women Engineers, The National and Oklahoma, Societies of Professional Engineers, The International Women’s Forum, The National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying, The Society of American Military Engineers, Tulsa Regional STEM Alliance Advisory Board member, Go Red for Women for the Oklahoma Heart Association and the Oklahoma Commission for the Status of Women. Dee is the previous Chairman for the Sac and Fox Economic Development Holding Company Board and most recently was appointed to the Governor’s Council on Workforce and Economic Development for the State of Oklahoma.
As a sophomore in college, the entrepreneurship bug bit me and I fell in love. That year, a friend and I launched a successful events company that generated over 6 figures in revenue in 1 year. A year later, I was blessed with the opportunity to spend some time at St. Louis based venture capital fund iSelect, learning the ins and outs of the early stage investing space. These experiences early on were quite empowering and in 2017, I founded and served as CEO of The Moves, a software company designed to disrupt the event ticketing space with industry leading transaction fees, text message notifications, and secure private events. After selling The Moves to Atlanta-based Wright Enterprises in July of 2019, I launched a venture studio called Underground Ventures and returned to St. Louis to join the investment team at SixThirty, a cybersecurity and fintech focused corporate-backed venture capital fund. My experiences as both an entrepreneur and investor have given me a level of insight and empathy necessary to assist early stage companies in accomplishing their growth goals and becoming "investment ready".
The Director of Entrepreneurial Development role at Atento is a unique opportunity to fulfill a number of my passions including investing in early stage companies, working with founders, and creating jobs. There are countless venture capital funds, but very few have an explicit economic development focus, which really differentiated Atento for me. The historic Greenwood District's place of prominence as a hub of economic prosperity for African Americans played a significant role in my decision to join the team and I look forward to contributing significantly to the revitalization efforts. I am excited to be a catalyst for Tulsa's emergence as a hub for technology companies and sustainable economic growth. If you are working on a company or just have an idea that you think might have some potential, feel free to reach out at email@example.com.
Dr. William D. Paiva is the Manager of the Oklahoma Life Science Fund (OLSF) which is a $30 million early stage health care fund. Dr. Paiva specializes in the identification and management of early-stage health care investment opportunities. Prior to OLSF, he was a partner with Sevin Rosen Funds, a fund with over $2 billion under management, where he invested in health care opportunities at the intersection of traditional technology sectors and healthcare, and ultimately leading their health care practice. In addition, Dr. Paiva was a partner at Chisholm Private Capital Partners, where he managed a $100 million fund focused on healthcare and IT. Over his career, Dr. Paiva’s portfolio companies have raised over $400 million in venture capital funding, closed over $2 billion in corporate co-development funding, and realized exits over $1.5 billion.
In parallel and over the last six years, Dr. Paiva stood up Oklahoma State University's Center for Health Systems Innovation (CHSI) with Cerner CEO and OSU alum, Neal Patterson. The Center is focused on transforming rural and Native America health through the implementation of innovative care delivery and IT solutions. Under Dr. Paiva’s leadership, the innovation Center grew from one person to 30 full time employees and increased the Center’s annual operating budget from $250,000 to $3 million. Within CHSI, there are two groups. One is the Institute for Rural Care Delivery Innovation which focuses on new and innovative care delivery models in rural settings. The other is the Institute for Predictive Medicine which is applying advanced analytics to the largest health care database which includes clinical information for over 63 million patients covering 20 years.
Dr. Paiva previously served as Senior Vice President at PreferUS Health Care, Shanghai, China, where they were deploying spine, orthopedic, and cardiac centers throughout China. He also served as a management consultant for the Life Sciences Industry Group at Pittiglio Rabin Todd & McGrath, later acquired by PriceWaterhouseCoopers, where he consulted with the top five pharmaceutical companies on product-development and technology-management projects. Dr. Paiva was an investment banking associate at JP Morgan in New York, providing strategic and investment banking advisory services to Fortune 100 healthcare companies.
Dr. Paiva holds a Ph.D. in molecular biology from the University of Oklahoma; an MBA from Dartmouth College's Amos Tuck School of Business; and completed an international finance program at the London School of Business.
True North Ventures
Deep Fork Technology
Alex Lobodiak directs the business development operations for GeoSafe and owns a boutique consulting company, True North Ventures. He is passionate about reducing emergency response times through easy-to-use interoperability software and guiding entrepreneurs through their changing business landscapes.