Entrepreneurs Lecture Series

The Entrepreneurs Lecture Series (ELS) is designed to showcase outstanding innovation and entrepreneurship among NC State alumni and partners. This semi-annual event features a lecture from a prominent entrepreneurial leader followed by a networking reception.  The lecture series, made possible by a grant from Andy and Jane Albright, is sponsored by the NC State Entrepreneurship Initiative.

The Fall Entrepreneurs Lecture Series will be held Monday, October 20 at 4:00 pm in the Talley Student Union Ballroom. We are pleased to welcome H. Christian Holljes as our Fall 2014 keynote speaker.

Register Here!

Christian Holljes H. Christian Hölljes joined NC State University as a Chancellor’s Faculty Excellence Program cluster hire in Innovation + Design and as a professor in the College of Design in conjunction with the Poole College of Management. Hölljes focuses on developing streamlined curriculums (online and traditional) for entrepreneurial students and faculty who want to bring new ideas to market. Hölljes is an award-winning designer, inventor and serial entrepreneur who has pioneered and patented new productsand created lucrative new markets in active learning and audio steganography.

Prior to joining NC State, Hölljes spent 17 years in the San Francisco Bay Area inventing and harnessing groundbreaking technology products and markets. For seven years, as Apple’s national media specialist and QuickTime team member, Hölljes evangelized and provided technical sales support to Fortune 500 media companies and federal government agencies throughout the United States and Canada. With the deep knowledge he garnered regarding Apple’s unique software and hardware integration methods, Hölljes co-founded Cadmus Interactive, a pioneer at the time in the Internet multimedia market space. He was hired by Machina Inc., a San Francisco-based high-tech product development and invention company, where he and his team invented and licensed more than 40 new consumer products before he left to run an R & D team for Radica Electronic Games. In 2000 Hölljes launched his own company, Newgent Inc., in creative partnership with Katsuya Nakagawa of SSD Co. Limited (inventor of the first electronic gaming platforms for Nintendo — NES, Super Nintendo and Nintendo 64). Hölljes and Newgent hold patents for the concept behind the award-winning and best-selling Smart Cycle, named Educational Toy of the Year and Innovative Toy of the Year by the Toy Industry Association in 2008. In the same year, Mattel named Hölljes and Newgent Inventor of the Year. Holljes recently co-founded Wavvox Technology, which allows silent metadata to be encoded into any audio and decoded by any smart mobile device using proprietary encoding and decoding algorithms. This technology allows second-screen applications to synchronize and extract data from TV shows, radio, public address systems and other audio sources in what is estimated to be an emerging $6 billion market.

Hölljes hails from Baltimore, Md., and attended Duke University on a wrestling scholarship. He graduated with a degree in zoology (biomechanics), mechanical engineering and fine arts. During his time at Duke, Holljes studied renaissance architecture and urban design in Florence, Italy, through Syracuse University, and he did an independent study at NC State’s College of Design, where he went on to earn a masters’ degree in industrial design. While still a student at NC State, Hölljes was commissioned by the African Fund for Endangered Wildlife to design and build the now-famous Giraffe Center and Sanctuary outside Nairobi, Kenya.

About the ELS The lecture series, made possible by a grant from Andy and Jane Albright, is sponsored by the NC State Entrepreneurship Initiative.  The goal of the Entrepreneurship Initiative is to build a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship for NC State Students through programs and opportunities that help prepare them to be North Carolina’s job creators and leaders of tomorrow.

Past speakers include John Norris*, president and CEO of Fuel Tech Inc.; Steve Yauch*, president and owner, Carolina Electronic Assemblers; Robert Young, founder of Lulu.com; Jim Goodnight*, CEO of SAS; Bill Nussey*, co-founder of DaVinci Systems and current CEO of Silverpop; Scot Wingo*, CEO of ChannelAdvisor; Thomas R. McPherson Jr.*, former president and CEO of Hatteras Networks; Barbara Mulkey*, president and CEO of Mulkey Engineers & Consultants; Richard Holcomb*, current CEO and chairman of StrikeIron, former CEO and chairman of Haht Commerce; Nick England*, founder and current CEO of 3rd Tech, founder of Ikonas Graphics Systems, founder of Trancept Systems; Jerry Neal*, Bill Pratt and Powell Seymour, founders of RF Micro Devices; Neal Hunter*, founder of Cree Inc. and LED Lighting Fixtures Inc.; Matthew Szulik, chairman and CEO of Red Hat; Joseph Forbes, COO of Consert Inc; Marshall Brain, founder of How Stuff Works; Chris Evans*, philanthropist and entrepreneur; David Anderson* and David Gardner*, co-founders of PeopleClick ; Peter Lehrer*, co-founder of Lehrer McGovern; Josh Whiton*, founder and CEO of TransLoc; Andy Albright*, co-founder and president/CEO of National Agents Alliance; Heather Hesketh*, founder of hesketh.com; John Harthorne, founder and CEO of MassChallenge; Gerard J. Hall, founder, president and CEO of SMT; Jesse Lipson, vice president and general manager of data sharing, Citrix Systems Inc; Grant Williard*, founder of JouleBug; Thushan Amarasiriwardena*, co-founder of Launchpad Toys; and Aly Khalifa*, owner of Gamil Design and co-founder and owner of Designbox LLC, and F. Scott Moody, Co-Founder and previous Chairman/CEO of AuthenTec and Co-Founder of K4Connect.

* NC State alumni