Institute for Innovation Development Content Contributors

Bill Hortz

Bill Hortz is an independent business consultant, Founder/Dean of the Institute for Innovation Development and CEO/Founder of Strategic Account Management Solutions.

Bill has over 30 years of experience in the financial services industry including creatively restructuring and developing internal/external sales and strategic account departments for 5 major financial firms; entrepreneurially pioneering new markets in the early days of the financial advisor fee-based movement and financial alliance programs in the US;  and created many non-traditional and engaging advisor educational events while working at firms including OppenheimerFunds, Neuberger&Berman, Peregrine Asset Management (HK), and Templeton Funds Distributors.

His wide ranging experiences have led  Bill to a strong belief, passion and advocation for innovation creation, strategic thinking, and strategic account management as the nexus of business forces needed to address a business environment challenged by a rapid rate of change.

LinkedIn profile:

Innovation Excellence is the world's most popular innovation website generating over 225,000 unique visits and 800,000 page views every month.  Innovation Excellence is the online home of the global innovation community, building upon a rapidly-growing innovation network with thousands of members from over 175 countries – thought leaders, executives, practitioners, consultants, vendors, and academia representing all sectors and industries.  The site features regular contributions from some of the brightest minds across the field of innovation.  Our goal is to provide Innovation Executives, Innovation Practitioners, and Innovation Vendors with the data, insights, and analysis needed to succeed in this new world order of innovation.

The Financial Engineering Institute

Nicholas Gregory, ChFE, ChFWA — CEO of The Financial Engineering Institute


  Nick Gregory is dedicated to providing quality financial education, training, marketing, coaching and advanced case design for the financial services, accounting, legal and non-profit communities through his firm’s financial engineering process. Over the past 40+ years Nick has consulted with attorneys, accountants, and financial services professionals in better serving their clients. He also provides consulting for some of the largest financial services organizations in the world.


  Mr. Gregory functions as a speaker, writer and consultant in the areas of cash management, risk management, investing, taxation, estate preservation, employee benefits, business succession and retirement planning, as well as business valuation, asset protection, and charitable giving.


  Nick is also Managing Director of The Charitable Capital Design Center, an organization which assists both financial professionals and charitable organizations in enhancing their planned giving capabilities by redefining “planned giving” as a unique form of financial capital. He is also Board Chairman of Give Back Nation. The non-profit organization creates bigger waves of giving within communities across the nation through other non-profits and financial professionals.  

Rowan Gibson

is one of today’s foremost thought leaders on business innovation. He is the author of two internationally bestselling books, Innovation to the Core  and Rethinking the Future, and is one of the world’s most in-demand public speakers. The media have labeled him “Mr. Innovation”, “the Innovation Grandmaster”, “the W. Edwards Deming of innovation” and “a guru among the gurus”. Rowan’s speaking and consulting engagements have taken him to 60 countries around the globe, and he is an adviser to a long list of Fortune 500 companies. He is also the co-founder of the world’s most popular innovation website, Innovation Excellence .

His latest book, Innovation to the Core (Harvard Business School Press), explains how to build and sustain a deep, company-wide innovation capability that drives continual growth and strategic renewal.    

Julie Anixter

is the Chief Innovation Officer of Maga Design Group, a pioneer in the use of visual information mapping to drive innovation and strategy. She is also the co-founder and Executive Editor of Innovation Excellence, the world’s most popular innovation blog for practitioners. A versatile innovator with over 20 years of global experience, Julie has helped business leaders determine, activate and realize their innovation strategies.

Julie helped launch Maga Design Group’s proprietary approach to creating physical and virtual representations of collective strategic thinking. Her prior roles included CMO for Brand-image at Desgrippes Laga; Managing Director of R&D for Tom Peters; and Chief Learning Officer for Anixter International. Julie is a frequent speaker, blogger and a contributing author to books including The Big Moo with Seth Godin, The Art and Practice of Leadership Coaching with Phil Harkin, and Beyond Branding with Nicholas Ind. She is currently writing a book on Courage and Innovation.

Braden Kelley

is an experienced innovation speaker, trainer, pull marketing strategist, and social business architect. He is the author of Stoking Your Innovation Bonfire. Braden writes frequently on the topic of continuous innovation and works with clients to create innovative strategies, effective inbound marketing, organizational change, and improved organizational performance. He has maximized profits for companies while living and working in England, Germany, and the United States. Braden earned his MBA from top-rated London Business School. He is passionate about innovation and has published more than 650 articles for online publications.

In his spare time, Braden is a co-founder of the popular global innovation community – – home to 5,000+ innovation articles and is an innovation leader on Twitter (@innovate) with 14,200+ followers.

Gijs van Wulfen

is the Founder of the FORTH innovation method. Previously with Ernst & Young Consulting and Boer & Croon Strategy & Management Group, at the end of 2002, he started his own innovation organization to spread, train and facilitate the FORTH innovation method to ideate new products and services. In 2006, Gijs wrote the practical innovation best seller Creating New Products in which he presents the FORTH innovation method. He has written several books since on this effective innovation method including his most recent, The Innovation Expedition - A visual toolkit to start innovation which is packed with exploration stories, quotes, charts, cases, checklists, formats and innovation maps.

Gijs helps organizations kick start innovation and his clients are both companies in industry and services, non-profit organizations, government and health organizations. Loving to inspire others, he was chosen by Linkedin as one of the top 150 thought leaders they profile and as the #2 International top 40 Innovation Bloggers of 2012.

Gijs is a key-note speaker on innovation at international conferences and workshops, like Let's Play Innovation (2013), Design Thinking Festival Potsdam (2012), ISPIM Barcelona (2012), SERVDES Helsinki (2012) en ECCI XII Faro (2011). He is member of the think tank CREA-NET 2.0, advising Southern Europe on innovation best practices and a trusted industry “Influencer” on LinkedIn with over 43,000 followers of his innovation insights.  Gijs is based in Utrecht, The Netherlands.CREA-NET 2.0, advising Southern Europe on innovation best practices. Gijs is based in Utrecht, The Netherlands.  and Twitter: @gijsvanwulfen 

Mike Brown

is the founder of the The Brainzooming™ Group. The Brainzooming™ Group is the catalyst for business people needing to successfully identify and implement strategic, innovative ideas. The tested Brainzooming process adapts the right array of strategic and creative tools to:

Expand your business vision and possibilities

Quickly turn great ideas into straightforward strategies and tactics

Clarify and focus your implementation efforts for results

Mike has been at the forefront of leading Fortune 500 culture change, contributing new approaches in research, developing simplified tools for innovation, strategy planning, and aligning sales, marketing, and communications strategies for maximum business results. He has accomplished these successes through a teaching orientation and providing non-experts with dynamic tools so they can succeed like experts.

Mike Brown is the author of the ebook, “Taking the NO Out of InNOvation,” a guide to breaking through personal challenges to living a more creative and innovation-oriented life. Additionally, he authors the daily Brainzooming blog on strategy, creativity, and innovation.

Stephen Shapiro

is one of the foremost authorities on innovation culture, collaboration, and open innovation.

During the past twenty years, his message to hundreds of thousands of people in over 40 countries around the world has focused on how to enable innovation by bringing together divergent points of view in an efficient manner.

Over the years, Stephen Shapiro has shared his innovative philosophy in books such as 24/7 Innovation, The Little Book of BIG Innovation Ideas and Goal-Free Living. He led a 20,000 person process and innovation practice during his 15 year tenure with Accenture. And his Personality Poker® system has been used by more than 50,000 people around the world to create high-performing innovation teams.

His latest book, Best Practices Are Stupid: 40 Ways to Out Innovate the Competition (Portfolio Penguin), was selected as the best innovation and creativity book of 2011 and is an international #1 best selling business book.

Noel Capon

is a R.C. Kopf Professor of International Marketing at Columbia Business School. He is one of the world's leading marketing educators and the global leader in strategic and global account management. At Columbia, he is Director of the Managing Strategic Accounts and Global Account Manager Certification programs. He also teaches on Columbia's Executive MBA program and its partner programs with the University of California, Berkeley (Berkeley/Columbia EMBA) and London Business School (EMBA Global). He also designs and directs numerous educational programs in marketing and account management for other educational institutions and business organizations globally.  Noel has also served as a Visiting Professor at INSEAD (Fontainebleau France), The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, and the China Europe International Business School (CEIBS) (Shanghai). He also holds the position of Distinguished Visiting Professor at Manchester Business School (Great Britain).

Professor Capon's publications have appeared in many journals and managerial publications. He has also written several research and managerial books on marketing, sales, and account management, including Managing Marketing in the 21st Century and Key Account Management and Planning.

William Duggan

is senior lecturer in business at Columbia Business School, where he teaches creative strategy in graduate and executive courses. He is the author of four books on strategic intuition as the key to innovation: Napoleon's Glance: The Secret of Strategy (2002); The Art of What Works: How Success Really Happens (2003); Strategic Intuition: The Creative Spark in Human Achievement (2007); and Creative Strategy: A Guide for Innovation (2012). In 2007 the journal Strategy+Business named Strategic Intuition "Best Strategy Book of the Year."  Professor Duggan has BA, MA and PhD degrees from Columbia University.

Mitch Ditkoff

is the co-founder and President of Idea Champions, a highly acclaimed management consulting and training company, headquartered in Woodstock, NY. He specializes in helping forward thinking organizations go beyond business as usual, originate breakthrough products and services, and establish dynamic, sustainable cultures of innovation.

Educated at Lafayette College and Brown University, Mitch has worked with a wide variety of Fortune 500 and mid-sized companies who have realized the need to do something different in order to succeed in today's rapidly changing marketplace.

Mitch has been an adjunct faculty member for several esteemed leadership development programs, including GE’s Crotonville Management Development Center, Duke Corporate Education, Fuqua School of Business, University of New Mexico’s Anderson School of Management, and Bell Atlantic’s Marketing Institute.

In 2010, he was voted as the #1 innovation blogger in the world. His widely read blog, The Heart of Innovation, is a daily destination for a global audience of movers and shakers. Additionally, Mitch is the author of the award-winning book, Awake at the Wheel: Getting Your Great Idea Rolling (in an uphill world) and the innovation-sparking card deck and online app, Free the Genie. Mitch was also acknowledged as one of the "40 Hottest Business Speakers on the Association Circuit" in Association Meetings Magazine. 

New Markets Advisors

helps companies create new sources of growth in rapidly changing environments.  It helps clients to:


  • Develop innovative strategies
  • Spot new opportunities
  • Assess potential markets
  • Develop detailed ideas
  • Commercialize new concepts
  • Build innovation capabilities
  • Establish corporate incubators or strategic marketing functions

New Markets' staff includes top strategy consultants, highly experienced market researchers, and entrepreneurs.  It integrates their perspectives in ways that traditional consulting firms, operating in distinct silos, are not equipped to do.  It grounds its approaches in rigorous methods based on leading academic and field research, and publishes findings in outlets such as Forbes, Harvard Business Review, and the Financial Times.  Through its disciplined approach to a traditionally undisciplined field, New Markets creates predictability in project outcomes and sustained business success for our clients.  Leadership of the company worked closely with Harvard Business School Professor Clayton Christensen - rated the world's top management thinker - to build consulting practices based on his research, branching out to form New Markets in 2009.  Capturing New Markets, a book by the firm's Managing Director, Steve Wunker, was named one of the five Best Business Books of 2011.  The firm works with a wide range of firms - venture-backed start-ups, aggressive mid-market firms, and global leaders including Nike, Commerce Bank, Barclays, Siemens, and many others.

Hult International Business School

Hult is the world's most international business school with campuses in Boston, San Francisco, London, Dubai, and Shanghai, and new rotation centers in Sao Paulo and New York. The school offers MBA, Executive MBA, Master and Bachelor degree programs. Hult's one-year MBA program was ranked Top 10 in International Business and International Experience by the Financial Times in 2013. Hult has a center of excellence in innovation that uses world-class methodologies, seasoned consultants as mentors, and network into world-class companies to run their Action Learning Programs. 

IXL Center

IXL Center helps corporations and individuals develop breakthrough strategic solutions and world-class innovation management capabilities in order to drive significant, sustainable business impact.


The Center for Innovation, Excellence and Leadership (IXL Center) is focused on delivering breakthrough and high performance results, building lasting innovation capabilities, and researching and codifying best practices in innovation management.

We develop innovative business solutions and capabilities of leaders, teams and organizations. We help organizations get started with powerful audits and learning histories, and we work across the entire spectrum from sourcing and idea generation, through concept development and pressure testing, to accelerated pilots, launch and scale-up. We drive accelerated execution through our Innovation Accelerator, and our experienced consulting support and action coaching of Eureka, Pursuit and Realization Teams.


KNect365 - the world’s leading facilitator of knowledge sharing and business connections. The KNect365 portfolio provides digital content, memorable face to face experiences, networking, and professional development and learning. Operating in key industry verticals, including finance, life sciences, and technology, we provide the highest-quality content and thought leadership alongside platforms for connecting and collaborating, giving our customers real advantage. Learn more here: 

Insights, Marketing & Innovation Events: mastering the art of provoking new thinking through cross-industry best-in-class idea exchange and uniquely curated experiences, including: webinars; events; online communities; social media touch points; executive briefings and white papers; thought leader interviews; and much more.

Upcoming 2019 conferences:


Back End of Innovation 2019

November 5-7, 2019 - The Mirage, Las Vegas, NV

EXECUTION: That One Little Word is often the One Difference Between Innovation Failure and Innovation Success

That's why BEI is 100% focused on the execution of innovation. Our trademearked "action-learning" formats put attendees right in the middle of the action. Roll up your sleeves, work together to solve real-life barriers to execution and turn ideas into dollars.

Visit for more information and registration.




Innosight is a global strategy and innovation consulting firm. We collaborate with senior leaders at the world's top companies to identify and pursue new growth opportunities, build innovation capabilities, and create disruptive new products, services, and businesses.

Our consulting approach is rooted in the groundbreaking concepts pioneered by the Innosight partners, board members, and our co-founder, Harvard Business School professor Clay Christensen. We have a deep understanding of the patterns of successful innovation, developed through rigorous research and fieldwork across a variety of industries and business types. We believe developing innovation capabilities is essential for long-term and sustainable growth that serves multiple stakeholders—shareholders, employees, consumers, and society at large. Innosight is uniquely able to help organizations address this critical need.

  • We focus on growth through innovation. This single focus enables us to provide a comprehensive, end-to-end service offering based on proven principles and deep expertise.
  • We've successfully solved a problem like yours before. Our singular focus means our people bring much more experience, judgment, and pattern recognition to your growth problems. In addition, our employees often have multi-dimensional experience in tier-one strategy consulting environments, corporate settings, and start-ups.
  • Our insights are unique—and uniquely effective. We bring clarity to growth topics as diverse as establishing a corporate innovation function, overhauling a business model for developing markets, or finding growth alternatives for commodity markets. Our approach and methodologies go beyond traditional analytic consulting approaches to help you "discover the unknown"—and identify and leverage opportunities and markets that don't yet exist.
  • We focus on results and long-term growth. Our goal is the same as yours—creating tangible business results. We partner with you, working as part of your team through every step of the innovation process to achieve your objectives.
  • We take a long-term, general management view of innovation. We view innovation as a critical long-term corporate capability, something that should be a top agenda item for the CEO and senior leaders. Because of this, every relationship we form focuses heavily on transferring real, long-term organizational capability to the organization. We aspire to leave you with the organizational structure, process, and skills to continue to grow over the long haul.
  • We are committed to advancing the theory and practice of innovation. Starting with co-founder Clay Christensen's classic book, The Innovator's Dilema, Innosight has been dedicated to advancing the understanding and practice of innovation. Our partners and our network of collaborators extend Innosight's thought leadership through dozens of books, Harvard Business Review articles, and other content that break new ground in innovation strategy.

Stefan Lindegaard

I am a Copenhagen-based author, speaker and strategic advisor who focuses on the topics of open innovation, innovation culture and communication for innovators. I believe open innovation requires a global perspective and I have given talks and worked with companies in the U.S., Europe, Asia and South America.

Besides sharing insights on my website , I have written 4 books:

Social Media for Corporate Innovators and Entrepreneurs: Add Power to Your Innovation Efforts
• Making Open Innovation Work
• The Open Innovation Revolution
• Næste Stop: Åben Innovation (Danish)

You might read my books, blog or tweets and wonder how I can help your company on open innovation, social media and intrapreneurship issues. Here you get an overview.

Talks/sessions: As a speaker or session facilitator, I really like to interact with my audience. I prepare to be able to establish a connection that leads to a good two-way discussion that makes it easier for the audience to relate my ideas and insights to their own issues.

I am open to tailoring a talk, session or training program to your needs.

Consulting: As a strategic advisor, I provide corporate innovation  units with an external view on the opportunities, challenges and initiatives that are related to further developing their corporate innovation capabilities.

Connecting: I help corporate innovation units connect with other units and thought-leaders within the innovation community and facilitate sharing of insights and experiences. This takes place in one-to-one situations as well as in Corporate Mind Exchange events organized by 15inno.

Promoting: By developing a communication strategy that leverages yours as well as my social media platform, I help companies become the preferred partners of choice within current and future innovation ecosystems and to become an admired innovation leader across all industries.

Academy of Rock & Human Dynamics

Peter Cook leads Human Dynamics and The Academy of Rock, offering Business and Organizational Development, Training, Coaching plus Keynotes which blend thought leadership on business with the power of music; be it rock, jazz or classical. Peter works with some of the world’s top businesses and organizations, including Johnson and Johnson, BP, The United Nations, Roche, Imperial Business School, Allianz, Electronic Arts, The Metropolitan Police et al.

Peter has three passions: science; academia and business:

• Leading innovative new Pharmaceutical Product R&D teams to bring multi-million dollar life-saving drugs safely to the market including the first treatment for AIDS

• Trouble-shooting businesses and starting up factories around the world

• Internal business, oganizational development and change consultancy

• Writing and tutoring for Business Schools at MBA level including Hult International Business School and Duke Corporate Education (ranked #1in the world for 12 years by the Financial Times) to offer world class corporate development programs

• Writing and performing music

Peter started life as a chemist, has an MBA and a ‘university of life’ qualification in leading rock bands.  Peter's talks can be accompanied by a roster of class A rock stars and sessions musicians. He is also an author of seven books , including "Sex, Leadership and Rock'n'Roll " and "The Music of Business" , on business leadership, innovation and creativity acclaimed by Tom Peters, Professors Charles Handy, Adrian Furnham and Harvey Goldsmith CBE.

Academy of Rock:

Human Dynamics:

Innovation Enterprise

Information for Innovators

Innovation Enterprise is an independent business-to-business multi-channel media brand focused on the information needs of Senior Big Data, Strategy, Advanced Analytics, Innovation, Digital, Finance, Operations, Publishing & Decision Support executives.

In addition to live conferences & summits our products include digital on-demand video content, live & on-demand webcasts plus online communities. We also provide marketing services as well as on-site custom production and custom research to Fortune 500 clients.

Whether it's delivered online, or in person, everything Innovation Enterprise produces reflects the company's unshakeable belief in the power of information to spur innovation.

upcoming 2018 events:

Product Innovation Summit - 9/27-28 Boston

Chief Innovation Officer Summit - 12/6-7 NYC

Interactive learning & unparalleled networking opportunities with innovation leaders from the world's most reputable companies. Reinvigorate your business with fresh ideas, meet industry pioneers and discover how to deliver breakthrough results!

Click above for details and Use Institute 20% discount: IID20

Seifter Associates

Harvey Seifter is one of the world’s leading authorities on organizational creativity and arts-based learning. Through Seifter Associates, the New York City-based consulting firm he founded in 1995, Harvey designs and teaches arts-based leadership and innovation programs for General Electric at GE’s Crotonville Global Leadership Development Center. Seifter Associates has also implemented innovation, collaboration and leadership development and culture change projects at IBM, AstraZeneca, Real Networks, Takeda, Johnson & Johnson, Morgan Stanley, Siemens, GlaxoSmithKline, Goldman Sachs and BMW.

Harvey is also Director and Principal Investigator of The Art of Science Learning, a $3 million National Science Foundation-funded initiative that uses the arts to spark creativity in science education and technology innovation, and the author of Leadership Ensemble: Lessons in Collaborative Management from the World’s Only Conductor-less Orchestra. 

He served on the Columbia University Graduate School of Business Senior Executive Faculty (2002-05); lectured at Université de Paris, Hitotsubashi University, Berkeley’s Haas School of Business and the National Academy of Science; and keynoted at the International Leadership Association Global Conference, Transatlantic Forum and the China Global Innovation Conference. 

A Fellow of the Royal Society for Art and a member of the Banff Leadership Center International Advisory Board, Harvey has participated in the White House Global Cultural Initiative and been honored as a Peter Drucker Foundation Thought Leader. 

Digital Currency Council

The mission of the Digital Currency Council (DCC) is to support the development of best in class professional practices in the digital currency economy through training, certification, and ongoing practice and marketing support.

The DCC was founded by a group of passionate digital currency enthusiasts and Bitcoin early adopters who actively contribute to the digital currency environment. Our members include leading professionals who aim to capture the growing opportunity in digital currencies including:

financial professionals - Advise your clients on how digital currency fits into their investment portfolios,

attorneys - Counsel your clients on legal and regulatory matters related to digital currencies, 

accountants - Manage the tax and reporting obligations of digital currency transactions.

Get trained. Get certified. Get connected to new opportunities and enhance your professional profile.

Take this survey on your readiness for the Bitcoin economy and qualify for a free upcoming ebook on digital currencies:

While we offer one free online digital currency training course, we are providing Founding Innovator members of the Institute with a FREE full access, all courses, one month Premium membership. Inquire about exclusive code with Institute Dean, Bill Hortz.

Purdue University - Center for Regional Development

The mission of the Purdue Center for Regional Development (PCRD) is to pioneer new ideas and strategies that contribute to regional collaboration, innovation and prosperity. Founded in 2005, the Center partners with public, private, nonprofit and philanthropic organizations to identify and enhance the key drivers of innovation in regions across Indiana, the U.S. and beyond. These drivers include a vibrant and inclusive civic leadership, a commitment to collaboration, the application of advanced data support systems to promote sound decision-making and the pursuit of economic development investments that build on the competitive assets of regions. As such, the four goals of the PCRD align with major contributors to healthy and sustainable regions.

We anticipate dramatic changes to the academic and market landscapes for our nation’s research universities in the coming years. Our proactive response is to continue to explore new ways to co-create value with those willing to invest in their future prosperity. In defining the tools, frameworks and strategy disciplines to guide these sophisticated collaborations, Purdue Center for Economic Development stands at the forefront of this important work.

For more information:

Strategic Doing

Conventional approaches to strategic planning do not work well to meet the complex challenges we face today.

Strategic Doing teaches people how to form collaborations quickly, move them toward measurable outcomes and make adjustments along the way. In today’s world, collaboration is essential to meet the complex challenges we face.

Strategic Doing enables leaders to design and guide new networks that generate innovative solutions. It is a new strategy discipline that is lean, agile and fast—just what organizations, communities and regions need to survive and thrive.

For more information, go to:

The Disruptor Foundation

Co-founded by Professor Clayton Christensen and Craig Hatkoff in 2009, the Disruptor Foundation is a private 501(C)3 non-profit whose mission is to raise awareness of and encourage the advancement of disruptive innovation theory and its application in societally-critical domains. This is done through through organizing conferences, events, prizes, competitions, and awards. 

The Foundation’s marquee event, the annual Tribeca Disruptive Innovation Awards, is presented in collaboration with theTribeca Film Festival and the Harvard Business School’s Professor Clayton Christensen, originator of disruptive innovation theory.

i-Impact Group

i-Impact Group, Inc. is an investment and financial services PR consultancy founded on and guided by three core principles: integrity, honesty and passion for what we do.

This humble yet powerful philosophy empowers us to create high-impact communication strategies that consistently deliver superior returns for our clients.

i-Impact Group’s experience is rooted in the financial services industry and spans across both the retail and institutional markets. Our understanding of the financial services industry and contacts with the business/financial media is second to none and our client experience ranges from start-ups to blue chip companies.

For more information,  contact Claudio Pannuzio, Founder & President at

Cannon Financial Institute

Recognized as one of the leading global consulting and professional development firms serving the financial services industry, Cannon does more than simply train and consult: we partner with our clients to give them the skills and knowledge to create positive impact. Whether you’re an individual looking to make a difference or an organization in need of innovative problem solving, our unique instructional and consulting experiences meet you where you are, with the answers and know-how you need. 

Cannon provides 24/7 online professional development courses, valuable learn-by-doing training experiences, a monthly estate planning teleconference and The Certified Wealth Strategist® designation which provides a unique industry perspective on how to collaborate with your client and your client’s financial influencers.

Xavier Center for Innovation

Xavier University's Center for Innovation, just northeast of Cincinnati, Ohio, is all about igniting the spark that exists in everyone - in students, as well as, business and community leaders. Much like an orchestra leader, the Xavier Center for Innovation has the capabilities and resources to ignite new ideas, inspire people in your firm, connect you with new creative partners and transform your organization. Innovation programs have been designed to prepare, train, and develop innovation in your company, and can be customized and taken to your firm nationwide or held here on campus.

We welcome you to explore our corporate programs and talk to us about your innovation goals for your firm.

Startupbootcamp FinTech/Insurtech

Startupbootcamp is a global network of industry focused startup accelerators. We take startups global by giving them direct access to an international network of the most relevant partners, investors and mentors in their sector.

Startupbootcamp started in 2010 and now operates globally with 13 accelerator programs and 10 locations in Amsterdam, Barcelona, Berlin, Copenhagen, Eindhoven, Istanbul, London, Singapore, Miami and New York. 

Each year Startupbootcamp runs industry-focused programs in more countries than any other accelerator in the world. All programs are located in global innovation hubs where startups spend 3 months meeting the top mentors, investors and partners in their industry from over 30 countries.

The Ritz Group

The Ritz Group is a 30 year old non-profit organization which is dedicated to being the premier networking group connecting entrepreneurs and investors, growing new businesses, creating new jobs and positioning Georgia as a leader in economic growth.  

The Ritz Group hosts monthly networking events with Shark Attack at the City Club –Buckhead, in addition to remote Innovation Labs, Angel Meet-Ups, plus Series A & B Round Angel Forums.

In addition, the Ritz Group is a pro-active supporter of the Georgia entrepreneurial ecosystem and has created multiple programs to foster connecting government programs, corporations and universities with inventors, entrepreneurs and students in Georgia.

Brite Idea Lab

Brite Idea Lab is a technology development company providing an enterprise-scale, white-label, SAAS platform to collect and manage Ideas/innovation, internally under the trade name of i-Lab, and from an external public grass-roots portal under the Brite Idea Lab brand. The technology provides a secure internal or external community of Idea submitters, idea collectors and companies providing services with SEARCH, Match, Follow-Me features to connect based on relevant interests. Back office features focus on managing idea portfolios and dispatching ideas to internal innovation authorities responsible for "decisioning" new ideas within the business process.

Brite Idea Lab has also launched a public-facing innovation community where entrepreneurs, business leaders, inventors and students can post their ideas to "connect" with resources from corporations, small businesses and universities.

For more information please visit our website: 

Corporate Foundry

Corporate Foundry leverages its corporate and entrepreneurial expertise to provide major corporations, small businesses, and higher education with a suite of programs and technologies to foster internal and open 360 Innovation.

Corporate Foundry FastTRAK innovation programs help assess innovation strategies, market disruption and threats. We work with clients to design solutions, programs and events, like Celebrity Shark Attack or Idea Labs to celebrate or launch Innovation programs. Our suite of deliverables are complimented with pre- and post- Event services designed to create campaigns, train executives, plus empower employees and students.

For further information see our website:

Intersource Consulting Group LLC

Intersource Consulting Group LLC is a financial services consulting firm, specializing in compliance with securities regulation for FINRA/SEC-registered broker-dealers, SEC-registered investment advisers, and for the financial services compliance review needs of financial technology (“FinTech”) companies.

Intersource acts as your right-hand, outsourced compliance and/or financial specialist, providing the SEC & FINRA with the answers they need to keep your firm in business, and your operations thriving. 

Whether it’s guidance through a regulatory examination, conducting mock examinations, facilitating a New or Continuing Membership Application, computing your net capital, projecting your Pro Forma financials, or consulting on operational restructuring – make no mistake that  Intersource Consulting Group is the regulatory answer for your financial services firm! 

A founding member of the Institute for Innovation Development’s FinTech Radar program, Intersource Consulting Group also pledges its marketing & networking support to Accelerators, Incubators and FinTech clients.  Through its wide network of financial services and investment advisory companies, Intersource will strive to identify business synergies where Accelerators, Incubators and FinTech members can all seek potential business opportunities within the larger financial services landscape. 

Intersource Consulting Group is spearheaded by the following two financial industry stalwarts and seasoned compliance professionals:

Donald R. Pollard - serves as the Chief Executive Officer of Intersource Consulting Group, basing his operations in New York.  Mr. Pollard, an experienced executive with over 25 years in the investments industry (including Wall Street), oversees Compliance, Operations and Business Development for Intersource. 

​Don’s client-facing services for Intersource feature his critical role as the remote Chief Compliance Officer ("CCO") for Intersource’s broker-dealer & registered investment adviser ("RIA"s) clients.

Ernie D. Kappotis - is the Chief Financial Officer of Intersource Consulting Group, basing his operations in Greater Boston.  Mr. Kappotis serves as Remote FINOP (“Financial and Operations Principal”) (SEC-required) for broker-dealer clients. 

With twelve years of rock solid experience in broker-dealer and investment advisory compliance & accounting combined with his experience as a lead FINRA sales practice examiner, Mr. Kappotis provides the analytical difference on the financial/capital/profitability/compliance side that your broker-dealer or investment adviser needs to navigate this tight, cost-centric regulatory environment.

Ernie provides clients with the inside-track for understanding the various FINRA/SEC regulatory perspectives & expectations.

Please feel free to contact us, either on-line through or through e-mail to initiate creative conversations!  None of us get anywhere without a helping hand! 



Harvest ( is a financial Discovery marketplace that enables financial firms to meaningfully reach a targeted, investment-focused audience. Using our behavioral Data, firms can initiate and strengthen client relationships. Our Digital technology platform allows for Distribution of insights on Harvest, which allows firms to communicate with a reader base of more than 500,000 institutional investors, RIAs, financial advisors and High Net Worth investors.

Readers join because Harvest’s Artificial Intelligence (AI) curates the most relevant investment insights, from the most relevant financial experts, directly to them. Financial organizations actively share more than 500 white papers, articles, commentaries, investor letters, and videos per week to Harvest’s rapidly growing library of more than 30,000 pieces of professional content.

Vosterra ( After 3 years of growing the Harvest platform, we encountered a massive opportunity to offer much of Harvest's underlying technology through a white label platform as well.  We call it Vosterra (Latin for "Your Land").  


  The Vosterra software strengthens relationships between you and the people in your own network.  The technology combines the flexibility and efficiency of using email, with the document security of Intralinks, while adding the personal touch of your own client portal. We make it simple for your clients and prospects to access with one login that works across all Vosterra and Harvest pages.  Vosterra offers financial firms a level of highly advantageous client engagement and knowledge that was previously unavailable.  Because it also leverages Harvest's software and database, firms have the ability to generate inbound interest into their networks as well.

National Association of Online Investors

Leland Hevner – President of the National Association of Online Investors (NAOI)

Mr. Hevner founded the NAOI in 1997 with the mission of empowering individuals to invest with confidence and success via education and the use of online resources. Thousands of people have taken NAOI personal investing online courses, attended Hevner’s college classes and/or read his books.

See to learn about the NAOI. See for Hevner’s CV.

In 2008 things changed. When the stock market crashed in that year, Hevner saw that the portfolios he was teaching his students to create using methods set forth by Modern Portfolio Theory (MPT) were crashing as well. At that point he realized that MPT - introduced in 1952 - could not cope with 21st Century markets and that more than education was needed to empower investors, also required was innovation. To meet this requirement, Hevner opened the NAOI Research Division and tasked it with developing innovative investing methods and investment types designed specifically to take full advantage of modern markets.

The Division’s first release was an alternative to MPT called Dynamic Investment Theory (DIT). DIT creates a new investment type called Dynamic Investments (DIs) that automatically change the ETFs they hold based on a periodic sampling of market trends. By being “market-sensitive”, they are capable of producing returns that are far higher than any MPT portfolio with risk lower than a Total Bond fund and no active management required.

Read about DIT and DIs at and in Hevner’s book described at .

The replacement of MPT by DIT is the type of “outside-the-box” innovation that Hevner believes is necessary for the financial world to adapt to rapidly changing markets and technology advances. DIT methods are now included in all NAOI education offerings and Hevner consults with financial organizations to show how the use of this new approach can give them a massive competitive advantage in the future of investing.

The Future of Investing Starts Here ® is a registered Service Mark of Leland Hevner and the NAOI.

Contact Leland Hevner at or on LinkedIn. 

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