Moxie Award Finalists: Best Startup Founder/Co-Founders

Written by Amanda Thompson
Published on Jun. 06, 2012
Moxie Award Finalists: Best Startup Founder/Co-Founders

The Moxie Awards

Best Startup Founder/Co-Founders

We are pleased to announce the following outstanding startup leaders as our finalists for The Moxie Awards' Best Startup Founder/Co-Founders.

Jeff Hyman

Founder and CEO - Retrofit

Jeff is a serial entrepreneur with a relentless passion for creating innovative companies & brands. He is driven by the belief that every individual is capable of doing incredible things once given the opportunity and knowledge. Prior to Retrofit, he was Founder and CEO of three internet-based services companies in the talent management field. Jeff served as SVP Sales & Marketing for Ameritox, a private equity-owned healthcare services company. He was the first VP Marketing of Dyson, now a market-leading consumer products company.

Jeff gives back by advising a number of startup companies. He holds a BS from The Wharton School at University of Pennsylvania and an MBA from The Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University.   

Logan Lahive

Founder - Belly

As the Chief Big Belly, it is Logan’s responsibility to pay for company dinners and to motivate the team with inspirational quotes worthy enough to be printed on matching t-shirts. Previously, Logan was the Director of New Business at Redbox after successfully leading the company's initiative to test and rollout video game rentals. Since then, Logan has spent the past 7 years in startups and has developed a passion for helping small businesses achieve their goals. Logan admits to wanting to shave his barber's beard; with Belly, he's created a product that allows him to do so.

Mike Sands

President and CEO - BrightTag

Prior to joining BrightTag, Mike was part of the original Orbitz management team and held the positions of CMO and COO. While at Orbitz, Mike helped take the business from start-up to IPO, then through two acquisitions (Cendant and Blackstone). After Orbitz, Mike joined The Pritzker Group as a partner on their private equity team. Mike also has held management roles at General Motors Corporation and Leo Burnett. His work at General Motors led him to be named a “Marketer of the Next Generation” by Brandweek magazine. Mike holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Communications from Northwestern University and a Masters in Management degree from the J.L. Kellogg School of Management. Mike also sits on the BrightTag board.

Marc Kiven

Founder and Chief Revenue Officer - BrightTag

As the founder of BrightTag, Marc Kiven brings a wealth of digital marketing domain expertise from senior executive roles at aQuantive (Avenue A | Razorfish and Atlas), Right Media and Centro. Marc served as COO and EVP of Global Expansion at Centro and helped take the company from small startup to dominant player in the local digital display market by building the largest platform for advertisers and agencies seeking local reach in quality publishing and contextual environments. At Right Media, Marc played a visible and active role building the company into the fastest growing media network in the world. Yahoo! acquired Right Media in 2007. Prior to his work at Right Media, Marc was one of the founding members of aQuantive’s Atlas division where he established the Atlas Digital MarketingTechnology as the leading ad server built specifically to address the needs of marketers and ad agencies. Marc began his digital marketing career as senior director of major account sales at Avenue A. Microsoft acquired Avenue A as part of the of aQuantive acquisition in 2007.

Marc has a B.S. in Finance from Arizona State University. He serves as a director on the BrightTag board, is an active participant in the IAB and also a frequent speaker at digital marketing events including OMMA, DMA and TechWeek.

Eric Lunt

CTO - BrightTag

Prior to joining BrightTag, Eric was co-founder and CTO of FeedBurner, which Google acquired in 2007. After the acquisition, Eric remained at Google in a senior technology role. Prior to FeedBurner, Eric co-founded and served as CTO at (acquired by 724 Solutions), served as lead technical architect at Digital Knowledge Assets (creators of the collaborative personal publishing software “sceneServer”), and helped to lead the application architecture team in Accenture’s next generation technology group known as “Project Eagle.” Eric graduated from Princeton University with a B.S.E. in Mechanical Engineering and a Certificate in Applied Computational Mathematics. In addition to his work at BrightTag, Eric is a senior technology advisor to Twitter and he also sits on the board of Gnip. Eric was recognized as one of Crain’s Tech 25 for his contributions to drive technology growth in Chicago.

Neal Sales-Griffin

Co-Founder & CEO - Code Academy

Neal Sales-Griffin is currently the founder and CEO of Code Academy, a beginner web design and development school in Chicago. Neal has worked and consulted with numerous startups and not-for-profits across Chicago. He has had the privilege of working with OCA Ventures and Sandbox Industries, two prominent venture firms in Chicago. Neal also serves as a board member of the Chicago chapter of International Game Developers Association.

Mike McGee

Co-Founder & Chief Creative Officer - Code Academy

Before Code Academy, Mike's greatest claim to fame was that his High School mascot was a pretzel. He went to Northwestern for four years where he spent two years being a student and two years in student government - miraculously becoming Student Body President Senior year. In Spring 2011, Mike decided to turn down Obama for America (his first real job offer) to co-found Code Academy, a beginner web development and web design school in Chicago.

Seyi Fabode

Co-Founder & Chief Electricity Officer - Power2Switch

Seyi Fabode, is the chief electricity officer and co-founder of Power2Switch, an innovative website that educates consumers about retail electricity and enables residential and commercial electricity customers to comparison shop for electricity providers and save money on their electric bills.
As CEO, Seyi is responsible for investor and partner relationships, sourcing and hiring the best talent for the team, and defining the strategic direction of the company.

Seyi has an MBA from the Booth School of Business and an M.Sc. (Manufacturing Systems Engineering) from the University of Warwick. He founded Power2Switch out of the New Venture Challenge, (NVC) one of the nation's premier business competitions, at Chicago Booth in 2008.

Prior to his MBA, Seyi was an Operations Analyst at EnergyQuote, an energy brokerage and management firm in London, where he led systems rollouts for the company's foray into multiple European markets with direct reporting responsibility to senior management. Prior to his stint at EnergyQuote, he was a Commercial Analyst at Barking Power Station/Thames Power Services, a privately owned power plant in London. It was his experiences at these two businesses that laid the foundation for what would soon become his entrepreneurial passion – Power2Switch.

Phil Nevels

Co-Founder & COO - Power2Switch

Phil Nevels, is the chief operating officer and co-founder of Power2Switch, an innovative website that educates consumers about retail electricity and enables residential and commercial electricity customers to comparison shop for electricity providers and save money on their electric bills. As COO, Phil is responsible for managing the day-to-day activities of its six employees as well as building strategic partnerships and business relationships with property managers, chambers of commerce and municipalities for the benefit of Power2Switch’s continued growth.

Prior to Power2Switch, Phil spent nearly eight years in tech-related industries, including several years at Accenture where he implemented technology solutions to improve supply chain processes at Fortune 500 clients and a stint at Orchestria, a late-stage startup acquired by CA Technolgies in early 2009, where he helped build their Chicago office. Phil has a degree in Electrical Engineering from Princeton University and an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.


Congratulations to our finalists and please remember to vote!


Hiring Now
Fusion Risk Management
Professional Services • Software