CIE Team

The Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship is a product of collaboration between student entrepreneurs, college faculty and administration. Students come from a variety of grades, majors and interests. These students are the driving force behind the center’s operations. The CIE leadership team works everyday to foster entrepreneurship at the 5C’s. Below are bios covering the background and interests of the CIE leadership team.

Janet Kiholm Smith

Janet Kiholm Smith

Director of the Center for Innovation & Entrepreneurship

Janet Kiholm Smith is the Von Tobel Professor of Economics at Claremont McKenna College and Director of the Center for Innovation & Entrepreneurship. She received a Ph.D. in economics from UCLA, and has been on the faculties of Arizona State University, University of Southern California, and Oberlin College. At CMC, she has served as Chair of the Department of Economics, Director of the Financial Economics Institute, and the founding Dean of the Robert Day School. She is coauthor of Entrepreneurial Finance: Strategy, Valuation and Deal Structure (Stanford U Press), with translations into Japanese and Chinese. She is the author of numerous journal articles on topics ranging from IPO pricing to corporate philanthropy, including publications The Journal of Finance, Journal of Financial & Quantitative Analysis, Journal of Corporate Finance, Journal of Legal Studies, Journal of Law, Economics & Organization, Journal of Industrial Economics, Journal of Banking and Finance. Current research interests are in the areas of new venture finance, investment behavior of not-for-profit institutions, and behavioral aspects of risk-taking. She teaches courses on entrepreneurial finance, strategy, and a practicum on new venture development.

 
Aman Raghuvanshi '18

Aman Raghuvanshi '18

Montgomery Student Manager

Aman is a junior at Claremont McKenna majoring in Computer Science (through Harvey Mudd College) with a sequence in Financial Economics. He’s interested in FinTech, particularly with Big Data and Machine Learning applications. He is also interested in early stage startups. In his free time, Aman likes reading, traveling, golf and horseback riding.

 
Patrick Hennessey '19

Patrick Hennessey '19

Montgomery Student Manager

Patrick is a sophomore at Claremont McKenna College pursuing three majors (Management-Engineering, Philosophy, and Computer Engineering) in five years.  At CMC, Patrick has maintained an overloaded course load every semester, while also participating in many extracurricular activities on campus.  He serves as the Class of 2019 President, the Dormitory President of the largest residence hall at CMC, a First Year Guide, and an Events Manager for Claremont Venture Capital Club.  Patrick is particularly interested in machine learning and its correlation with the increase of technological innovation.

 
Tarah Gilbreth '18

Tarah Gilbreth '18

Head of Marketing

Tarah is a junior at CMC majoring in Philosophy and Public Affairs with a Leadership Sequence. She is from Colorado Springs, Colorado but considers Claremont her second home. Outside of raising awareness and increasing engagement in CIE events as the Head of Marketing, she is also a student manager at Roberts Pavilion. Tarah studied abroad in Copenhagen last fall and will be interning at a commercial real estate firm in Denver this summer as part of their marketing department.  Tarah is very interested in the intersection between tech and society and how new entrepreneurial ventures can improve our lives.

 
Adele English '19

Adele English '19

Events Manager

Adele’s passion for innovation and entrepreneurship was inspired by her high school Economics of Innovation course in which she engaged with several startups on campus. She is a sophomore at Claremont McKenna College currently pursuing a sequence in Computer Science, with an undecided major. Adele also dedicates much of her time to the College Programming Board (CPB), 5C Club Soccer, Admissions Office, and buildOn club. Adele is energized by the increasingly entrepreneurial spirit pervasive on the Claremont campuses and is excited to be counted among such thoughtful, innovative peers.  

 
Ryan Bellissimo '20

Ryan Bellissimo '20

Events Manager

Ryan is a freshman at Claremont McKenna College, pursuing a dual-degree in Economics-Engineering and Computer Science. From a young age, Ryan has exhibited a passion for entrepreneurship and has already founded a software company and a technology based non-profit. At CMC, Ryan spends his time teaching computer science to children with learning disabilities in the local community of Claremont. Ultimately, Ryan hopes to make Claremont McKenna an institution dedicated to the development of entrepreneurial minds and innovative ideas.

 

 
Pallavi Deshpande '20

Pallavi Deshpande '20

Head of Venture Development

 
Kevin Cunanan '18

Kevin Cunanan '18

Front End Developer

Kevin is originally from Northridge, California. He is a junior at Claremont McKenna College, double majoring in Computer Science and Philosophy. At college, Kevin loves participating in hackathons and freelance work. He’s helped create deliverables for SOURCE, Camp Kesem, and other 5C organizations. Kevin constantly invests in Kickstarters and always looks for the newest tech.