Chairwoman & CEO
Joanna Coles is the chairwoman and CEO of Northern Star Acquisition Company, and Executive Producer of ABC Freeform’s highly acclaimed The Bold Type, now in its fifth season and inspired by her career. She is the former Chief Content Officer of Hearst Magazines, responsible for 300 magazines globally. She sits on the public Board of Directors of Snap Inc. (Snapchat) and Sonos; and private companies Density, Blue Mistral, and the non-profit Women Entrepreneurs New York City.
Jon Ledecky is co-owner of the New York Islanders in the National Hockey League. He is a private equity investor who has been the co-founder or initial investor in companies that have raised over $20 billion in financing. Jon founded U.S. Office Products in 1994 and by 1997 the Company had become the fastest entrant ever in the history of the Fortune 500 with annualized sales of nearly $4 billion. Jon is an honors graduate of Harvard College and also graduated from Harvard Business School.
Jim Brady is the founder and owner of Brady Enterprises, which provides financial, legal and strategic services to growth companies. He brings experience in financial management, business development, corporate development and capital transactions for growth companies.
Mr. Brady received a B.A. from the College of William and Mary, a J.D. from George Washington National Law Center and a M.B.A. from The University of Virginia Darden Graduate School of Business.
Brett Cyrgalis is an experienced journalist and best-selling author who has pivoted into the business world. His investigative skills have translated into thorough due diligence, with a keen eye toward critical thinking and character analysis. He was a sports writer at the New York Post from 2006-2020, leading daily coverage of the NHL and golf and investigating feature stories.
Mr. Cyrgalis received a BA in English from Villanova University (2006), with a minor in Writing and Rhetoric.
Sarah Sclarsic has served as a member of the board of directors of Pivotal Investment Corporation II since June 2019. Ms. Sclarsic is a technology entrepreneur and advisor, consulting for companies in a wide range of areas, from drone delivery to financial software to gene therapy, advising them on fundraising, business strategy, key hires and communications. Since September 2018, Ms. Sclarsic has been conducting research at the MIT Media Lab, an interdisciplinary research laboratory.
David Shapiro is a proven business leader with over 20 years of broad-based experience driving cash flow and enterprise value creation for publicly-traded and privately-held media, internet and technology companies. He previously served as the Chief Operating Officer of Propel Media, a global digital media and marketing technology company. David was also responsible for Propel Media’s acquisition of DeepIntent, a high-growth healthcare marketing technology platform.
David resides in Beverly Hills, CA with his wife and 2 children.
Justine Cheng is a Partner of Cornell Capital. She has over 20 years of private equity and finance experience. Prior to joining the firm in 2016, Justine was a member for 13 years of the Private Equity Group at Fortress Investment Group, where she was most recently a Managing Director. While at Fortress, she also served as the Chief Financial Officer and Chief Operating Officer for New Senior Investment Group (NYSE:SNR) and Newcastle Investment Corp. (NYSE: NCT).
Johnathan Mildenhall is Executive Chairman of the high profile management consultancy TwentyFirstCenturyBrand. Founded in 2018, TwentyFirstCenturyBrand is focused on enabling the founders and CEOs of some of the world’s most innovative companies to realize full growth potential via excellence in corporate and consumer brand strategy and marketing. TwentyFirstCenturyBrand is proud to count Pinterest, Uber, Peloton, N26, Nextdoor, Mars, Condé Nast, Memphis Meats, among many others, as clients.
Debora Spar is the MBA Class of 1952 Professor of Business Administration at Harvard Business School and Senior Associate Dean of HBS Online. Her current research focuses on issues of gender and technology, and the interplay between technological change and broader social structures. Spar tackles some of these issues in her latest book, Work Mate Marry Love: How Machines Shape Our Human Destiny. She and her husband, Miltos Catomeris, are the parents of three grown children.