Center for Entrepreneurship at Hofstra University

Center for Entrepreneurship Advisory Board

The Center for Entrepreneurship has tapped a group of experienced business and economic leaders to serve as members of its Advisory Board. Members provide financial support, student mentoring and guidance on program development. To contact an Advisory Board member please contact Stacey.Sikes[at]Hofstra.edu.

Mike Seiman
Chair, Digital Remedy

Mike Seiman

Mike Seiman is the CEO & Chairman of Digital Remedy, a digital media solutions company leading the tech enabled marketing space, he co-founded as an undergraduate college student at Hofstra University in the early 2000s. The company has grown quickly and is now a major player within the crowded digital advertising landscape. The rapid growth of Digital Remedy, formerly CPXi, led to its inclusion on Inc. Magazine’s list of fastest growing privately held advertising/marketing companies in 2008, 2009, 2010, 2014, and 2015. Mike was selected as a semi-finalist in Ernst & Young’s ‘Entrepreneur of the Year’ initiative in 2010 and 2013, and as a finalist in 2009 and 2014. He was recognized by the American Marketing Association, receiving their prestigious '4 Under 40' award in 2015 and received the SmartCEO Future 50 award in both 2015 and 2017. In his free time, Mike serves on the Board of Trustees of his alma mater, Hofstra University. He also focuses on numerous philanthropic initiatives including sitting on the boards of the H.E.S. (Hebrew Educational Society non-profit community center) and continues his long-time support of Children International, where he spearheaded the development of community centers in both Guayaquil, Ecuador in 2010 and Barranquilla, Colombia in 2014. A fan of the arts, Mike has produced a feature length film distributed by Lionsgate.

Barbara Roberts

Barbara Roberts

Barbara B. Roberts is Entrepreneur in Residence at both Columbia Business School and Hofstra University. She is also former NY Chair of Tiger 21 and a speaker and writer about all stages of entrepreneurship, family businesses and the economic progress of women. An economist by training, previously Ms. Roberts held senior positions on Wall Street and was the first woman to serve on Dean Witter’s board of directors. Ms. Roberts also served as president and CEO at the stock photography company, FPG International, now part of Getty Images and at the museum audio tour company, Acoustiguide. Ms. Roberts has served as chair of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York’s Small Business and Agricultural Advisory Committee and as a member of the Suffolk County NY Planning Commission. As Entrepreneur in Residence she has helped to launch hundreds of start ups, is an active angel investor and serves on the boards of several private companies. Ms. Roberts is the author of three whitepapers about entrepreneurs: Life after an Exit, The Owner’s Journey and Women’s Entrepreneurial Journeys. She is certified as a master coach by the Hudson Institute of Santa Barbara and trained in facilitation and mediation. Ms. Roberts has an Economics and Philosophy degree from Goucher College.

John Dragotta
President and CEO of Sovereign Global Advisors

John Dragotta

John Dragotta is the CEO of Sovereign Global Advisors, a financial advisory firm based on Long Island. He earned a BBA in Finance from Hofstra University in 1997. Dragotta began his professional career working for a retail firm where he was consistently recognized among the top five largest producers. At 25, he moved to another company and started his first branch office. Within two years it became that company's largest branch. A few short years later he started his own broker dealer, Sovereign Global Advisors. Today, Sovereign is a broker dealer and an investment advisory firm, with reps working in-house and as Independent Financial Advisors across the country.

Thomas J. Garry
Member, Harris Beach PLLC

Thomas J. Garry

Tom Garry serves as an attorney leader at Harris Beach PLLC on economic development and public finance projects involving all phases of a commercial and residential development from site plan applications to final approvals. He represents developers and municipalities in litigation involving such matters as land use and zoning, and breach of contract. Garry is recognized for his experience in election law and represents clients in New York state courts, including the Appellate Divisions and the Court of Appeals. He represents municipalities and serves as special counsel to many towns and local agencies and has provided legal advice to municipalities and their agencies on issues such as the development and implementation of a master plan, the creation and impact of municipal easements and restrictive covenants, compliance with the State Environmental Quality Review Act, the creation of planned development districts, zoning overlay zones, transportation issues and smart growth projects. He is a former member of the Long Island Regional Planning Council, an agency charged with developing Long Island's growth strategy. Representative matters include: New York state counsel for the Hillary Clinton Presidential campaign - Hillary for America. Garry has acted as counsel to numerous New York political campaigns including statewide and as Counsel to the Town of Babylon on Wyandanch Rising, a transit-oriented development project, and Counsel to Catholic Health Services of Long Island, advising on economic development projects.

Kevin Hesselbirg
CEO, The Gemini Companies

Kevin Hesselbirg

After more than 25 years leading growth oriented companies in a senior executive capacity, Kevin Hesselbirg currently serves as board member and advisor to multiple private entities ranging from start-ups to firms with more than $100M in annual revenues. Kevin, a three-time Chief Executive Officer (CEO), was first named CEO of OpenLink Financial after previously serving as OpenLink’s Chief Financial Officer and Chief Operations Officer. OpenLink Financial is a leading global software developer of financial and energy, trading and risk management solutions with more than $300M in revenue, 1200 employees, and offices in 9 countries. Thereafter, he became CEO of Primatics Financial, a leading SaaS provider of finance and risk solutions for the banking sector. Kevin was more recently the CEO of The Gemini Companies, a leading fund administrator serving more than 600 mutual, private, and hedge funds. As CEO, he led multiple transactions with various private equity firms eclipsing more than $2B in capital activity. Kevin began his career with the Private Owned and Emerging business group at Ernst & Young. Hesselbirg received a B.S. from Fordham University.

Robert F. Hussey

Robert F. Hussey

Bob Hussey, MBA International Finance, BSBA Management/Finance Georgetown University. Bob is a New York based, seasoned financial, marketing, operations and technology executive, who after a 10 year career in Fortune 100 multinational packaged goods and media companies, became a successful entrepreneur. He founded the U.S.’s first and largest direct broadcast satellite radio network – POPRADIO Corp – led it’s NASDAQ IPO and eventual $100+ million sale to Heritage Media/News Corp. In recent years, Bob served as CEO of Digital Lightwave Inc. ( NASDAQ ), Chairman of NUR Macroprinters ( NASDAQ/Israel based, before being sold to HP ), Chief Restructuring Officer ( CRO ) of HC Wainwright & Co., the U.S.’s oldest securities broker-dealer. Bob has also acted as Brand Consultant to Dubai based Apparel UAE. Today, he is the lead Director of Digital Remedy, one of the U.S.’s leading independent ad tech, ad network and consumed media publishers, NYC based Amphion Capital Partners, and Eco Water Technologies, a Florida based company that holds 10 “issued” patents for processing municipal wastewater. On a personal note, Bob is Treasurer of the Mercedes Club of N.Y., and Preservation Long Island, while also serving for over 10 years as a Trustee of Old Westbury Gardens. He’s a competitive Trap/Skeet shooter, sailor and skier. He and his wife, Debi, live in Garden City and are the proud parents of 5 adult children.

Josh Sason
Founder and CEO of Magna

Josh Sason

Joshua Sason is the Founder & CEO of Magna. At just 22-years-old, he founded the company in 2009 out of his bedroom, quickly growing it into a leading worldwide entrepreneurial and investment brand with multiple strategies and offices in New York and Sydney. Today, Magna is widely recognized as one of the world's foremost creative and tactical firms; building disruptive companies and investing across the worldwide public and private equity markets and the entertainment industry with a focus on non-correlated overlooked and underserved opportunities. Additionally, Sason founded the construction company, Sason Builders, and the talent acquisition technology company, Mainz (acquired in 2017), both of which continue to thrive and operate as portfolio companies within Magna's Ventures division. As a producer, he's financed several feature films and documentaries through Magna Entertainment including HBO's "The 50 Year Argument," and 2016's, "Bleed for This," both in partnership with film legend Martin Scorsese. He continues to actively write and produce music through Magna Entertainment's interests as well. Sason is involved in various philanthropic causes related to music, the arts and entrepreneurship, fostered through the firm's eponymous Magna:initiative which has partnered with organizations including: The Grammy's, Defy Ventures, Mid Island Y JCC and others. He graduated magna cum laude with honors from Hofstra University.

Ron Yakuel
Founder and CEO of FragranceX.com

Ron Yakuel is the founder and CEO of FragranceX.com. Founded in 2001, FragranceX.com is a fast-growing ecommerce company that distributes authentic brand name fragrances at discount prices to consumers and businesses worldwide. FragranceX.com was recognized three times in Inc magazine’s fastest growing privately held companies. Ron received a bachelors from Hofstra University and his MBA from Fordham University.