Startup

ABOUT US

Your Answer to Winning Non-Diluted Federal Funds!

OppsSpot, LLC provides consulting services for start-up and small technology companies looking to commercialize their ideas through strategic partnering and Government contracting and grants.  Specializing in the SBIR / STTR program.

We have helped companies raise tens of millions of dollars in federal funding! Let us help you too!

OppsSpot, LLC is a woman-owned small business (WOSB).

 

THE OPPSSPOT TEAM

Get to Know Us

Sonia Edited Photo 2.jpg

SONIA VOHNOUT

Founder & President

Sonia has held executive management and senior technical positions and has co-founded several companies. Sonia has over 30 years of experience in systems engineering, quality systems, business development and program management.  She is well known for her expertise in the SBIR/STTR program and offers consulting services to assist small business with this and other government funding vehicles. Sonia has helped start-ups and small businesses raise tens of millions of dollars of federal funding.


Sonia has a BS and MS in Systems Engineering from the University of Arizona.

CHRIS BRIDGEWATER

Sr. Business Consultant

Chris is experienced in business startup, strategy development and execution. Seventeen years of experience working with the US Government as an employee and contractor. With his experience in manufacturing and quality systems management. As a CEO/CFO, Chris has the ability to empathize with challenges and understand strengths at all levels of a corporation in a way that is rarely found. He is well known for parsing challenges into achievable goals. He also has experience creating and leading teams to meet large objectives.

IRENE BOND

Sr. Business Consultant

Irene Bond has 2 decades of experience in assessing new technologies, preparing commercialization and business development plans and strategies via independent consultancy and a university think tank.  She has been involved assessing technologies developed in the US, Mexico, India, Korea, and Portugal.  Her portfolio encompasses software including AI and machine learning, medical devices, foods, cosmetic products, and clean-tech.  She enjoys defining and leveraging competitive differentiation to drive revenue generating opportunities.  

Irene has an MS in Technology Commercialization and Information Science from the University of Texas at Austin.

PETER NESTLER

Sr. Business Consultant - Drug Discovery & Life Sciences

Peter has over 20 years of experience in academic research and pharmaceutical lead discovery focused on the interplay of disciplines and technologies in the context understanding and modulating biological processes. He has served in leadership roles in academia and global corporate environments. He has successfully built and lead multi-national research networks and secured funding for these. He drove several drug discovery projects across therapeutic areas from screening to preclinical candidates and built additional expertise in large scale data management and life science informatics. Peter is a member of the Desert Angels in Tucson and closely involved in the start-up ecosystem of Tech Launch Arizona and the University of Arizona Center for Innovation.


Peter holds a Ph.D. in Chemistry from the Johann-Wolfgang von Goethe University in Frankfurt and did his post-doctoral research at Columbia University in New York.

XIYAO ZHANG

Sr. Business Consultant

Xiyao has 15 years of experience in management, strategic marketing, R&D and manufacturing. She combines her strong business acumen and technical knowledge to help companies succeed in the semiconductor and photonics industry. Xiyao has years of experience leading cross-functional engineering teams and multi-million dollar projects. Her academic research focused on understanding how light interacts with various novel semiconductor materials. She also holds one US patent on a low-power small-footprint amplifier innovation for factory automation and robotics applications.

Xiyao holds one PhD degree in Physics and masters degree in Engineering from North Carolina State University.

DR. WALTER RAWLE

Sr. Business Consultant and Strategist

As a veteran of GE Research, United Technologies, Ultra Electronics and General Dynamics, Dr. Rawle, epitomizes the accomplished strategist, technology leader, and business development professional. With his experience as an applied researcher, inventor, and classically educated engineer, including an earned doctorate in electrical engineering and over 35 years of outstanding business, research, program execution, and product development experience, he brings a unique skillset to any problem or challenge.  A unique combination of strong business and program management ability, in-depth analytical and theoretical foundation, and strong leadership, have delivered successful program capture and execution for a wide variety of commercial, government, and military customers. 

Dr. Rawle earned his PhD from the University of Manitoba in Computational Electromagnetics.

JAN KNIGHT

Sr. Market Researcher

Jan has over 20 years of experience in market and business research and likes to think of herself as ‘providing insight to entrepreneurs from start-ups to grown ups.’ Much of her work in market assessments, competitive profiling and industry research helps to shape business plans,  commercialization plans, business development, investor pitches and more. A domain generalist, she has a diverse set of clients and her research topics range from seaweed snacks to medical devices, insulation to software and just about everything in between. Technology clients are just one of her niches, especially those applying for SBIR grants. She also works with the National Center for Economic Gardening providing market research services to second stage companies throughout the U.S. Originally from England, Jan remains interested in global business and works with clients nationwide and internationally.

Jan holds a B.A. in Humanities/Renaissance Studies from U.C. Berkeley, and a M.A. in Information Resources & Library Science from the University of Arizona.

ALINA PIETERS

Sr. Market Researcher

Alina has over 11 years of international experience in business development, technology transfer, project management, and Information Technology (IT). Over the past 5 years Alina has provided support to small companies through market research and creation of technology transfer and marketing plans for new technologies developed under SBIR/STTR grants and government contracts. 


Alina has an MBA and a masters degree in Management Information Systems from the University of Arizona.

BETH KANE

Sr. Technical Writer

Beth has more than 25 years of experience as technical writer and editor, including eight years writing SBIR/STTR proposals and reports.

She holds an MA in Journalism from the University of Arizona, and a BFA degree from San Francisco Art Institute.

ED HACKETT

Sr. Technical Writer

Ed is a commercial writer over 25 years’ experience providing communication solutions for clients of all sizes. Whether technical writing for software, hardware and mechanical systems, ghost writing blogs for industry tycoons, writing and editing grant proposals for highly technical innovations or creating marketing packages for complex medical devices for both domestic and international markets, Ed is a multi-talented marketer/writer/editor with a broad range of experience and an extensive knowledge base. A collaborative team member with a unique ability to understand and distill complex information into its most basic yet complete form, he brings clarity, cohesiveness and purpose to corporate and business messaging.  


Ed holds a Bachelor of Arts in English Composition and Rhetoric from the University of Arizona and an Associate of Science in Paramedicine.

If you want to learn more about our amazing team members, get in touch.

 

OppsSpot, LLC

(520) 345-0859

Tucson, Arizona

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