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APS Industry Advisory Board

The Industry Advisory Board facilitates exchange of ideas between industry members, and faculty and students in the department of Applied Physical Sciences. Through regular exchange of ideas, the Board provides a regular channel of communication between APS and industry, ensures that APS receives appropriate and expert advice on the relevance of its curriculum and teaching, and advises on co-curricular activities.


Allie Mitzak
Allie Mitzak

Allie Mitzak
Maxtec, Strategic Marketing Manager

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Allie graduated from the Joint Department of Biomedical Engineering at UNC and NC State in 2019 and is now a Strategic Marketing Manager at Maxtec, a respiratory medical device company. Prior to her current role, Allie was a part of the Halma Future Leaders Program, a 2-year leadership-development rotational program which consists of four, six-month placements in different roles and at different Halma group companies. Allie also produces and hosts The BME Grad Podcast, a podcast that helps biomedical engineering students and recent graduates understand early career path options.


Ben Godfrey
Ben Godfrey

Ben Godfrey
Wolfspeed, Materials Integration Engineering Manager

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Ben was raised in rural northeastern North Carolina. The son of a mechanic, Ben knew from a young age that he wanted to go into a field where he could solve problems and fix things. This drove him to choose engineering and NC State University. He met his wife in college (also a State grad) while pursuing his Chemical Engineering and Paper Science & Engineering bachelors. Upon graduation he worked as a process engineer in the paper industry for a few years before coming to Wolfspeed. Over the course of my 13-year career at Wolfspeed he have been a Product Engineer, Process Engineering Manager, and now manages their Integration Engineering team. His team is responsible for integrating and automating new Silicon Carbide products and processes into our materials factory. In his spare time, he is an avid trail runner and enjoy doing home improvement projects and automotive work/restoration.


Grace Cronin
Grace Cronin

Grace Cronin
Biogen, Automation Engineer

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Grace graduated in 2019 from the Joint Department of Biomedical Engineering at the University of North Carolina and NC State, Grace works as an Automation Engineer II at Biogen in Durham, NC.
Alongside fellow BME Grad, Allie Mitzak, Grace co-hosts The BME Grad, a podcast for young biomedical engineering graduates looking for guidance on career path options and networking skills.


Jeanne Taylor
Jeanne Taylor

Jeanne Taylor
ShopBot Tools Inc, Chief Executive Officer

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Jeanne graduated from Savannah College of Art and Design in the early 90’s. From there she worked in Boston at a boutique design firm that set the stage and inspiration for opening her own design and marketing firm years later. She continues to be inspired and energized by people and companies making their own products and selling and supporting those products. After 14 years of owning and operating my firm, Designing Solutions, in Durham, NC she decided to close the doors in 2014 and focus solely on growing and supporting ShopBot Tools sales and marketing efforts. She works with an exceptional group of people whose talents and experience bring together innovative and interesting products. She believes strongly in the employee ownership model of business that shares the responsibility and privileges of ownership with those that work together to make a business successful.


Kureli Sankar
Kureli Sankar

Kureli Sankar
Cisco, Technical Marketing Engineer

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Kureli Sankar started with Cisco in Aug, 2006 as a TAC engineer supporting Cisco’s security products. May 2013, she took on a new role as Technical Marketing Engineer responsible for security features on Cisco’s routing portfolio. Since 2018 she has been leading a team of Technical Marketing Engineers accountable for ~ $3B routing solution portfolio. Her team works very closely with Engineering, Customers, Sales Engineers, TAC, Managed Services, making a full circle from new product design to launch and everything in-between. She has been presenting at Cisco Live US, EUR, ANZ and Cancun since 2013 delivering multiple Breakout Sessions, Tectorials, Labs, Lunch and Learns, Walk-in Self Paced Labs, World Of Solution demos etc. Sankar holds an engineering degree in Electrical and Electronics Engineering from Regional Engineering College, Trichirappalli, India, CCSP and CCIE Security #35505 certifications. She is the immediate past Co-president for Women of Cisco RTP, also leads ICON (Indians Connecting Network) RTP and RTP Garden Employee Resource Organizations for Cisco. In her spare time Kureli volunteers for various non-profit organizations such as Citizen School, Durham Performance Learning Center, NC First Robotics, Girl Scouts – Carolina, Raleigh Rescue Mission and gives back to the community.


Lamar Mair
Lamar Mair

Lamar Mair
Weinberg Medical Physics, Inc., Materials Engineer

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Lamar Mair is a materials engineer at Weinberg Medical Physics, Inc., a medical device incubator in Maryland USA that builds magnetic nano/microscale particles for medicine, as well as low field magnetic resonance imaging systems. Before Weinberg Medical, Lamar was a graduate student at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (Applied and Materials Sciences) and a postdoc at the National Institute of Standards and Technology, where he worked on manipulation and tracking of magnetic and acoustic nano/micromotors. In the lab, Lamar’s favorite days involve mornings attempting new experiments, afternoons writing proposals, and evenings collaborating with graduate students in academic labs. Outside of work, Lamar enjoys running, snowboarding, and asking technical, non-technical, and purely hypothetical questions to curious people.


Mara Hitner
Mara Hitner

Mara Hitner
MatterHackers, Vice President of Strategic Partnerships

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After 16 years in advertising and ad tech sales, Mara became obsessed with desktop 3D printing, and inspired by the possibilities it held for the future of personal manufacturing. Mara joined MatterHackers in March 2015 as Director of Business Development, and was promoted to Vice President of Strategic Partnerships in July 2020. Mara is thrilled to help corporations, educators, and enthusiasts embrace desktop digital manufacturing, and make product creation and customization native to the next generation. Mara has built a knowledgeable, service-oriented team of Sales Associates, Enterprise Solutions Specialists, and Applications Engineers at MatterHackers, helping to match clients and partners with the right 3D printers and materials to save time and money on their projects. Through the COVID-19 crisis, she also managed the Maker Response Hub – coordinating over 5000 volunteers with 14,000+ 3D printers across the USA to donate over 75,000 3D printed PPE to 180+ facilities in need. Mara is a proud Ambassador for America Makes and Advisor for Women In 3D Printing: Next Gen programs. When not printing kitty rings for friends, Mara can be found singing in 80s and 90s tribute bands around Southern California.

Ryan Chan
Ryan Chan

Ryan Chan
Tethis Inc, Co-founder and VP of R&D

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An entrepreneur at heart, Ryan co-founded Tethis and leads innovation strategy and R&D at Tethis inc. His multidisciplinary technical team develops plant-derived and biodegradable alternatives to petroleum-derived plastics. Tethis’ current focus is on delivering the world’s first truly circular superabsorbent material to market. Prior to founding Tethis, Ryan held multiple R&D roles at innovative companies such as RTI International, NC State University, and Corning Incorporated. Ryan holds a Ph.D. in materials science and engineering from NC State.