Chicago Booth Student Groups


The University of Chicago Booth School of Business

Chicago Booth Student Groups Portal Community Directory

Upcoming Events

Spring '12 Meet & Greet

Saturday, April 21st, 2012
4:45 pm – 6:30 pm, Gleacher Center, Room 420

PEVC Meet & Greet is an excellent opportunity for you to network with fellow Boothies, and share ideas on what to expect in pursuing a career in PE, VC, or Entrepreneurship. In addition, the co-chairs will be discussing the events that we plan on holding over the next year.

But wait there's more!

PEVC is also proud to host a Booth alum and one of PEVC's former co-chairs

Anil S. Kumar


Past Events

10th Annual Chicago Booth Health Care Conference

Friday, October 28, 2011, 4:45 pm – 6:30 pm, Gleacher Center, Room 306

The Chicago Booth Health Care Group (HCG) presents "The Changin Landscape of Health Care."  Speakers include John Bardis, Founder and Chairman of MedAssets (NASDAQ: MDAS) and Lee Shapiro, President of Allscripts Healthcare Solutions (NASDAQ: MDRX).  There will also be panel discussions on Entrepreneurial Health Care and Principal Investing in Health Care.


Wednesday, November 16, 2011, 6:30 – 8:30pm.  Applications due Friday, October 28

Need a technical co-founder?  Participate in MELD!   The EVC Group is proud to partner with the Illinois Technology Association (ITA) and the E Club at Kellogg to launch MELD, a networking event specifically designed to unite local tech experts and MBA students with startup ideas.  The event will feature 10 startups from Booth's full time program, 5 startups from Booth's part-time program, and 10 startups from Kellogg.  The ITA will invite designers and developers from its network.  Since there may be more startup teams that want to participate than spots available, we've created a that will be reviewed by Linda Darragh and the Polsky Center.

SeedCon 2011

November 17th and 18th at Venue Six Ten (Spertus Institute), 610 S. Michigan Avenue

The early bird sale ends on November first and may sell out sooner, so don't wait too long. Plus, as members of PEVC and EVC, you get a special $50 discount on the early bird rate -- think of all the TNDC specials that can buy!  Just use the discount code: seedcon11evc_early

SeedCon will take place on November 17th and 18th in Chicago, and we will have two fun-filled days to celebrate entrepreneurship and venture capital in Chicago.  Here's what to expect:

Thought-Provoking Talks

We are bringing together some of the leading minds in entrepreneurship and venture capital to discuss the most exciting and disruptive trends of the near future. We'll explore topics like what skills non-technical co-founders can bring to the table, what's happening in the ever-evolving world of venture investing, and where all this social networking data is going to take us.  Among our speakers are: Brad Burnham, managing partner of Union Square Ventures; John Tolva, CTO of the city of Chicago; Sam Yagan, founder of OkCupid, and Kevin Willer, president of the Chicagoland Entrepreneurial Center.

Fast-Pitch Competition

We like to think that you guys are all already forming teams to take part in our fast-pitch competition. Either way, don't miss an opportunity to watch exciting new start-ups pitch in front of some of the biggest investors and entrepreneurs in Chicago. Plus, it's great practice for NVC! The winners will get over $50,000 in startup-friendly services to kick-start their business.

"SOMETHING VENTURED: Risk, Reward and the Original Venture Capitalists"

October 8, 2011, 4:45 pm – 6:30 pm, Gleacher Center, Room 306

SOMETHING VENTURED tells the story of the creation of an industry that went on to become the single greatest engine of innovation and economic growth in the 20th century. It is told by the visionary risk-takers who dared to make it happen...Tom Perkins, Don Valentine, Arthur Rock, Dick Kramlich and others. The film also includes some of our finest entrepreneurs sharing how they worked with these venture capitalists to grow world-class companies like Intel, Apple, Cisco, Atari, Genentech, Tandem and others.

Beginning in the late 1950′s, this small group of high rollers fostered a one-of-a-kind business culture that encouraged extraordinary risk and made possible unprecedented rewards. They laid the groundwork for America's start-up economy, providing not just the working capital but the guidance to allow seedling companies to reach their full potential. Our lives would be dramatically different without the contributions that these venture capitalists made to the creation of PCs, the Internet and life-saving drugs.


M&A Transactions: Structuring Alternatives for Tax and Other Purposes

August 6, 2011, 12:15 - 1:15 p.m., Gleacher Center, Room 400

PEVC brings you guest speakers, featuring two distinguished attorneys from Paul, Hastings, Janofsky, & Walker.

About the speakers:

Jim Smulkowski

Jim Smulkowski is a partner in the Corporate practice at Paul Hastings in the Chicago office. He concentrates his practice in federal income tax issues related to all aspects of private equity backed investments, mergers and acquisitions, venture capital funds, real estate investments, and management compensation.

Mr. Smulkowski works extensively with the firm's Corporate, Commercial Finance, and Real Estate practices. His representative transactions include acquisitions and dispositions of businesses for both financial and strategic investors, cross-border investments, debt and equity investments in real estate joint ventures, representing senior and mezzanine lenders, representing sellers of closely held businesses, and representing management teams in connection with the acquisition or disposition of their employers. Mr. Smulkowski also works with the firm's Litigation and Dispute Resolution practice on various tax controversy matters. He is a member of the Chicago Bar Association.

Prior to joining the firm, Mr. Smulkowski worked in the Chicago offices of a multinational law firm for over twelve years and before that Coopers and Lybrand LLP (now known as PricewaterhouseCoopers). Mr. Smulkowski graduated from Loyola University Chicago in 1993 with a B.A. in Political Science. He received his J.D. degree from Northwestern University School of Law in 1996.

Christopher Sheaffer

Chris is an of counsel in the Corporate practice at Paul Hastings in the Chicago office. His practice is focused on representing private equity firms in leveraged buyouts, minority investments, add-on acquisitions, divestitures and recapitalizations. In addition, he provides general corporate counseling to their portfolio companies from initial investment through liquidity event, advising on executive compensation, equity incentive plans, corporate governance and other general transactional matters. He also regularly represents public companies, closely held businesses, entrepreneurs and senior management teams in connection with mergers and acquisitions and financing transactions.

Prior to joining Paul Hastings, Mr. Sheaffer was a partner at a multinational law firm. He earned his J.D. degree (cum laude) from Northwestern University School of Law. He graduated from the University of Notre Dame (cum laude) with a B.S. degree in Civil Engineering.


Want to Start the Next Google? Winning Ideas for the Next 10 Years

October 9, 2010, 4:45 - 6:30 p.m., Gleacher Center, Room 308

PEVC brings you a panel discussion, featuring distinguished Chicago Booth experts from technology, healthcare and VC investing, on the topic of emerging growth opportunities in the next decade.


Ian T. Foster

Director, Computation Institute
Professor, Department of Computer Science
Distinguished Fellow, Argonne National Laboratory

Frequently denoted as "the father of Grid Computing", Prof. Ian Foster is Director of the Computation Institute, a joint institute of the University of Chicago and Argonne National Laboratory. He is also an Argonne Senior Scientist and Distinguished Fellow, and the Arthur Holly Compton Distinguished Service Professor of Computer Science.

Dr. Foster received a BSc (Hons I) degree from the University of Canterbury, New Zealand, and a PhD from Imperial College, United Kingdom, both in computer science. His research deals with distributed, parallel, and data-intensive computing technologies, and innovative applications of those technologies to scientific problems in such domains as climate change and biomedicine. Methods and software developed under his leadership underpin many large national and international cyberinfrastructures.

Dr. Foster is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the Association for Computing Machinery, and the British Computer Society. His awards include the Global Information Infrastructure (GII) Next Generation award, the British Computer Society's Lovelace Medal, R&D Magazine's Innovator of the Year, and honorary doctorate from the University of Canterbury, New Zealand, and CINVESTAV, Mexico. He was a co-founder of Univa UD, Inc., a company established to deliver grid and cloud computing solutions.

Raphael Lee

Paul and Allene Russell Professor of Surgery (Plastic)
Professor of Medicine (Dermatology)
Professor of Organismal Biology and Anatomy

Prof. Raphael Lee is recognized internationally as an expert in plastic surgery, trauma and bioengineering. Dr. Lee has pioneered new reconstructive surgery methods for correction of congenital and acquired gynecologic defects.

Dr. Lee was named one of "America's Top Surgeons" by the Consumers’ Research Council of America. He is an editor and co-author of four books, and more than 180 articles and book chapters. Additionally, he has been named an American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Fellow, a Searle Scholar, and a MacArthur Fellow.

Dr. Lee has been appointed to the committees on Molecular Medicine and Clinical and Translational Medicine at the University of Chicago. He holds advanced degrees in biomedical engineering, including a master's degree from Drexel University and a doctorate from the Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology. He has also received more than 30 research awards and honorary degrees. In addition, Dr. Lee has served in leadership roles in several scientific organizations and societies.

Laura Pearl

Managing Director, CERES Venture Fund

Laura Pearl has over twenty years of private equity investing experience. She has participated in a number of investments in a wide range of industries including healthcare services, financial services, retail, manufacturing and industrial distribution.

Ms. Pearl has served on the board of directors of a number of companies, including Levy Restaurants, Platinum Entertainment, Whitehall Jewellers, Homex Healthcare Corporation, Genderm Corporation, O.N.E., Inc., and Apex Specialty Materials. In addition, she is on the Board of the Illinois Venture Capital Association, where she serves as co-chairman of the Institutional Investors Committee and is a Charter Member of TiE Midwest.

Ms. Pearl evaluates business plans and coaches entrepreneurs in a variety of programs, including serving as a selection judge at the 2005 Midwest Venture Summit and the 2003 and 2005 Springboard Forums. She has served on the judging panel for Ernst & Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year Program for the Chicago/NW Indiana Region for 10 years and has been chairperson for the last six years. She has also served as a judge for the National Program as well. Ms. Pearl regularly lectures on private equity and entrepreneurial finance at the University of Chicago Booth Graduate School of Business and Northwestern University’s Kellogg Graduate School of Management.

Ms. Pearl graduated summa cum laude from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with a B.S. in Accountancy (’81). She received an M.B.A. from the University of Chicago(’88). She was the Bronze Medalist on the Uniform C.P.A. Examination in the State of Illinois as well as a recipient of the Elijah Watt Sells award.


The panel discussion will be anchored by Prof. Steven Kahl

Steven J. Kahl

Assistant Professor of Organizations and Strategy

Prof. Steven Kahl teaches Technology Strategy at University of Chicago Booth School of Business. Dr. Kahl researches how customers come to understand and use a new technology and how this process influences technological development and market competition. In related research, he also studies the role of services in innovation as a means to transfer knowledge between customers and producers. He has extensively studied the software and computer industry, using both historical and quantitative research methods.

Prior to academia, Dr. Steven Kahl was a vice president in Global Investment Research at Goldman, Sachs & Co. in Boston, following the enterprise software sector. He is also a former research analyst at U.S. Bancorp Piper Jaffray Inc., senior consultant at Deloitte & Touche LLP in Minneapolis, and systems analyst at Andersen Consulting (now Accenture) in Washington, D.C.

Dr. Kahl earned a bachelor's degree magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa in philosophy from Dartmouth College, where he also was a senior fellow. He earned a master's degree in philosophy from the University of Minnesota, with a focus in epistemology and logic. In 2007, he earned a PhD in management from the Sloan School at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), specializing in technology, innovation, and entrepreneurship. He was the recipient of the Best Student Paper in the Academy of Management Technology and Innovation Management Division in 2006 and a Presidential Fellowship from MIT from 2003 to 2007.

An Evening with Professor Meadow

De-Mystifying Private Equity

October 15, 2010, 6 - 9 p.m. CDT

Since 1982, Scott Meadow has been a principal investor in the private equity industry.

Meadow is the faculty director of Global Initiatives, and since 2000, has held the position of clinical professor of entrepreneurship at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. He was awarded the 2002, 2003, 2004, and 2005 Phoenix Prize and the Faculty Excellence Award in 2010. He was designated by BusinessWeek's "Guide to the Best Business Schools" (2003, 8th edition) and (2005, 9th edition) as one of the outstanding entrepreneurial professors in the country. Meadow has taught 5,000 students at Chicago Booth in Entrepreneurial Finance and Private Equity, Commercializing Innovation (which he created) and the New Venture Challenge.

Meadow has more than 25 years experience as a general partner with four venture capital and private equity firms including William Blair Venture Partners, The Frontenac Company, The Sprout Group, and most recently with the Edgewater Funds, where he remains a senior advisor. Over the course of his career, Meadow has approved hundreds of equity financings, been active in fundraising and has personally led, originated, or created more than 60 investments including two dozen health care services companies, over a dozen consumer services and retail companies, as well as companies enhanced by the internet. Meadow has been recognized four times by Venture One as one of the outstanding health care investors in the industry.

Representative investments include Coventry Corporation, HEALTHSOUTH, Sunrise Assisted Living, Sunrise International, Managed Health Network, Aspen Education Services, Pathology Partners, Heritage Healthcare, MedPartners, The Sports Authority, CompUSA, and Staples. Meadow recently served on the board of directors of National Equipment Services (NASDAQ: NLEQ) during its emergence from Chapter 11. He currently serves on the Board of Advanced Life Sciences (NASDAQ: ADLS), Barrier Safe, GenerationOne, and is an advisor to American Apparel.

Meadow earned a bachelor's degree magna cum laude from Harvard College and an MBA from Harvard Business School.


Launching a Startup – The Baby Steps

A Panel Discussion featuring Joe Jablonski and Eric Olson

August 7, 2010, 12:15 p.m. CDT, Gleacher Center, Room 408

Joe Jablonski and Eric Olson will discuss everything you need to know about launching a new venture including idea generation, elevator pitch, forming a team, business plan, how to get seed money, and the legal aspects to consider as you get ready to launch your start-up.

Joe Jablonski is a technology based serial entrepreneur and has founded several companies. His current company,, is a private community management platform for faith based organizations. Prior to WeGather, Joe founded Acumence, an online analytics monitoring package for high speed discrete manufacturing. Joe also started a Y2K consulting firm specializing in manufacturing software and an OEM machine building company dedicated to inspection in the food industry. He has engineered manufacturing facilities around the world including Kraft’s first manufacturing facility in Beijing. Joe is an active angel investor and has investments in an organic cookie company, a managed services hosting company, and an alternative energy company. He holds an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management and a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering from the University of Illinois.

Eric Olson is a student at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. He earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Finance from Bentley University, Massachusetts. Prior to business school Olson worked at DFJ Portage Venture Partners where he focused on financing and building globally leading technology companies in the Midwest. Before joining DFJ Portage Olson was with the Chicago-based start-up FeedBurner, which was acquired by Google in June 2007(He even co-authored a Harvard Business School case study about FeedBurner). Olson was earlier a venture capitalist and an institutional investment analyst. Olson co-founded TECH cocktail, a semi-annual event for technology entrepreneurs, VCs, programmers and other tech related folks in Chicago, Washington D.C., Champaign, IL, Boulder, CO and Boston, MA.

Admission is free for members and $5 for non-members. 

Making a Difference Through Social Entrepreneurship – a Panel Discussion featuring Lauren Polo and Desiree Vargas Wrigley

July 31, 2010, 12:15 p.m. CDT, Gleacher Center, Room 408

Lauren and Desiree will discuss, among other things, what motivated them to launch their Social Entrepreneurship ventures and the challenges they faced.

Lauren has a Bachelor of Arts in Economics and History from Yale University. She is currently pursuing an MBA from The University of Chicago Booth School of Business. Prior to Booth, Lauren spent five years as an Analyst and Associate in the Investment Banking Division at Goldman, Sachs & Co. Her work focused on M&A for closely-held companies and anti-raid, shareholder activism and merger advisory. Lauren has extensive community involvement with urban education organizations, like Minds Matter, Family Dynamics, and the Juvenile Justice Mentoring League. She is the recipient of the Education Pioneers 2010 summer fellowship.

Half Costa Rican half Kansas Citian, Desiree graduated from Yale University with B.A. in Latin American Studies in 2004. Prior to launching GiveForward, she worked as a specialist in collegiate entrepreneurship at the Kauffman Foundation in Kansas City and as an independent consultant for Arabella Philanthropic Investment Advisors. She is passionate about philanthropy and the role that young and small-scale donors can have on our communities.

Spring 2010 Meet & Greet

April 24, 2010, 4:30 p.m. CDT, Midway Club

If you answered “Yes”, you should attend the 2010 Spring Meet & Greet hosted by the Private Equity, Entrepreneurial Ventures and Venture Capital Club (PEVC) on Saturday April 24th 2010 in the Midway Club at Gleacher Center.

The Meet & Greet event will be an excellent opportunity for you to network with fellow Chicago Booth students, and share ideas on what to expect in pursuing a career in Private Equity, Venture Capital, or Entrepreneurship. In addition, it will be a good way to ease into the weekend.

The event is free, and hors d’oeuvres will be served. 

University Private Equity Summit

January 28-30, 2010
Salt Lake City

Please see the University Private Equity Summit website for details for the 7th annual Private Equity Summit hosted by the UVF in Utah. The registration deadline is November 30 for this event which will be held in January 2010. Space is limited; please send an email indicating your interest to the PEVC board by November 1, and we will coordinate the registration. In the event that student interest is greater than our allotted seats, this will allow the board sufficient time to negotiate more space or devise a fair method of allocation among members.

Please note that at this time we are offering registration for this event to current PEVC members only. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact us.

Private Equity Speaker Event, featuring Jason Sowers, '06

October 2, 2009, 4:30 p.m. CDT

Jason will be discussing his path to Winona, and answering questions about the current state of P/E, the hiring outlook, and what students can do to prepare for internships/careers in the industry.

Jason Sowers is an Associate at Winona Capital, and has both entrepreneurial and private equity experience. Prior to Winona Jason was part of KPMG’s Global Strategic and Commercial Intelligence group (SCI) where he worked with and advised corporate and private equity clients on over 15 M&A transactions ranging in value from $50 million to $13 billion. Previously, Jason held various roles at Portage Venture Partners and Momentum Capital. Before graduate school, Jason worked with senior management in strategic business and product development roles at two separate private equity backed start-ups, both of which are still profitable and growing.

Mr. Sowers graduated cum laude from Amherst College with a degree in computer science and economics. He earned his MBA from Chicago Booth, where he focused on finance, accounting, and entrepreneurship.

Jason's current portfolio company responsibilities include American Education Group and Dragon Alliance.

Law 101 for Start-Ups, featuring prof. John Stoner

March 7, 2009, 4:15 - 5:45 p.m. CDT

The Private Equity, Entrepreneurial Ventures, and Venture Capital Club (PEVC), in association with Hyde Park Angels, is pleased to invite you to a talk about legal issues concerning start-ups.

John Stoner is an attorney focused on providing legal counsel to high-tech entrepreneurs on matters such as corporate formations, technology licensing, trademark registrations, employment contracts, and professional-services agreements. He is also an instructor at the Illinois Institute of Technology where he teaches business law and has taught a wide variety of classes including Intellectual Property Management, Entrepreneurial Law Practicum, and Business Strategy. Through the Knapp Entrepreneurship Center at IIT, he provides a wide variety of consulting services including a review of potential new businesses.

His prior experience consists of various corporate positions over 25 years, including serving as corporate counsel at ServiceMaster and as regional manager at Motorola. Prof. Stoner has a JD from the Chicago-Kent College of Law and also an MBA from IIT.

Entrepreneurship Series: Funding Early Stage Ventures- SBIR /STTR grants

February 13, 2008, 4:30 - 6 p.m.
Gleacher Center, Room 208

As a part of our Entrepreneurship series, the PEVC & the Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship are excited to present Funding Early Stage Ventures: SBIR /STTR grants. Prof. Waverly Deutsch will moderate the panel, which will include John Noel: President, Illinois Technology Development Alliance and Roger Sweis, Co-Founder, Prevail Health Solutions

John Noel: President, Illinois Technology Development Alliance, will describe the SBIR program and the application process

Roger Sweis, Co-Founder, Prevail Health Solutions, will provide an account of how they got the grant and then managed the grant process and oversight.

Last Updated 4/17/12