START-UPWARD, presented by the RAISE Forum, will share stories from the trenches of successful entrepreneurs who also deliver positive change and an upward impact.

Panelists include:

  • Louise Wasilewski – As an Emory Goizueta executive MBA alumna, Wasilewski founded and is the CEO of Acivilate, a software company focused on criminal justice rehabilitation. She is passionate about improving the way criminal justice works for everyone involved.
  • Shannon Pierce – Pierce is the inventor of the patented CareCam (now New Ocean Health Solutions), a patient-issued video documentation that leads to better care for patients. An expert in the field, Pierce has participated in TEDx, received Innovision’s “Innovator of the Year” award in 2011 and the Unsung Hero Award in 2008 by Interim Healthcare.
  • Jeff Cherry – As the founder and CEO of SHIFT Ventures and Conscious Venture Lab in Baltimore, Cherry is an evangelist for the transformation of capitalism. Working with private investors and early-stage businesses, his goal is to create businesses that are operating at the intersection of profit and purpose.
  • Brian Tolleson – Tolleson is currently the Interim CEO at the National Center for Civil and Human Rights and a partner at Lexicon Strategies. Previously, he founded digital content studio, BARK BARK, leading public affairs and advertising campaigns for large brands. Tolleson is no stranger to being a civil and human rights activist and has played a key role in defeating Religious Liberty bills in Georgia.

The panel will be moderated by Steve Brett of Presentation TuneUps.

Last fall, the RAISE Forum held its first RISE breakfast panel, a series of panels on entrepreneurship open to the public, which welcomed more than 70 attendees. More information on last year’s panel can be found here: