2020-2021 Innovation Fund Investment Team

The Innovation Fund Investment Team is responsible for reviewing applications and making funding decisions. The Investment Team members are selected for their diverse backgrounds and expertise so that applicants can receive substantive feedback.

Applications are open for new Investment Team members. Students from any Penn school or grade level are encouraged to apply. The deadline to apply is Sunday, September 13, 11:59 pm EDT. Apply here.

Questions? Contact Jill Anick, Senior Associate Director, Venture Lab


Lead Investor

Ethan Kellough IPD’21 is a student in the Masters of Integrated Product Design program, jointly offered by Penn Engineering, Wharton, and Penn Design. This makes him an expert in the process of designing products at the intersection of technical feasibility, user desirability, and market viability. He has a deep technical expertise in a number of different fields and has also held roles in business strategy and analysis. He is passionate about the power that design and entrepreneurship have to disrupt the status quo and drive positive cultural and societal change. Ethan received his Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering and Engineering Leadership and Innovation Certificate at the University of Western Ontario where he was awarded the Canadian Society for Mechanical Engineering Gold Medal. His portfolio is available at ethankellough.com.


Lead Investor

Coco Wenfei Wang W’21 was 15 when she became the CEO of her non-profit organization, Target Alpha, which provides complimentary financial literacy education to students in Canada. In her time as CEO, the organization became a federally-recognized organization, reached 6500+ students, and raised $3000+. March of this year, her company, Agrigate, was selected from 100,000+ applicants as finalists at HULT Prize Singapore and HULT Prize Ivy. She is currently working on her startup Candid Beauty which is launching in a few weeks. As she explores various entrepreneurship avenues, she wants to continue building her beauty startup.


Matias Porras Paniagua GR’23 graduated from MIT with a degree in chemical-biological engineering. Afterward, Matias was an analyst in Genentech’s operations rotational leadership development program (ORDP) where he obtained experience in large scale manufacturing, R&D and forecasting. Throughout his time at Genentech, Matias pursued a master’s degree in Management Science & Engineering at Stanford. Matias is currently a third-year Ph.D. candidate in the department of Bioengineering and is interested in developing novel cellular therapies for the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases. In addition to his lab endeavors, Matias is also a Pear VC student fellow, the VP of finance at PennHealthX, one of the VPs of education for the Wharton PE/VC club, a team member in Venture Foragers, and a 2019-2020 PWIF Lead Investor.


Ryan Kramer WG’21 is an MBA candidate at The Wharton School focused on Entrepreneurship and Finance. Prior to Wharton, he spent the last five years serving as an Acquisitions Officer in the United States Air Force where he built partnerships and established contracts for advanced military technology development. He has experience in strategy and product management in areas including unmanned aircraft technology and most recently, in the emerging field of space technology and satellite defense. Ryan obtained his BS in Management from the United States Air Force Academy in 2014 where he was a member of both the baseball team and men’s golf team.


Samantha Linn W’22 is a junior at The Wharton School concentrating in Finance and Management/Entrepreneurship. She has been a Fellow in the Penn Wharton Venture Initiation Program and has served as an intern for Clove, a venture backed startup developing shoes designed specifically for nurses. Previously, Samantha was an intern at 7Wire Ventures, an investment firm focused on empowering the informed connected healthcare consumer. Samantha serves as treasurer for Cogwell, a club that promotes and teaches active listening among peers on campus. Samantha is from the suburbs of Chicago, IL and enjoys running, yoga, and playing soccer.


Antonio “Luc” Paladino W’21 is currently a senior pursuing a Finance and Management concentration at the Wharton School. Before attending Wharton, Luc went to Plymouth-Whitemarsh High School, where he played football and lacrosse and grew up in the small town of Lafayette Hill, a suburb of Philadelphia. He has worked in a wide range of industries such as Fintech, Wealth Management, and Venture Capital. His main interests include fostering his startup idea, playing/watching sports, investing in the stock market and spending time with friends and family.


Rima Reddy WG’21 is an MBA Candidate at The Wharton School focused on Entrepreneurship & Innovation and Marketing. In addition to PWIF, Rima works as a Fellow for Pear VC and as a Venture Consultant for the Snider Center. Prior to Wharton, Rima was the Principal at XRC Labs, an NYC-based consumer/retail accelerator and fund. At XRC, Rima led the startup sourcing and diligence process to select and invest in 20 startups a year from over 1000 reviewed. Rima has also held roles in Strategy and Business Development at Ralph Lauren and in Equity Research at Goldman Sachs. Rima is a graduate of Barrett, the Honors College at Arizona State University, where she double majored in Economics and Finance, and of Parsons School for Design, where she majored in Fashion Marketing.


Thilan Tudor M’23 is an MD candidate at the Perelman School of Medicine and is passionate about healthcare and biotechnology innovation. Originally born and raised in the Toronto area, Thilan moved to Vermont to attend Middlebury College where he earned his BA in Molecular Biology & Biochemistry and Economics. Prior to medical school, Thilan learned about the intersection of valuation, operations, and strategic growth from his consulting work at Trinity Partners, corporate development experience at Intrexon Corporation, and equity research training at Goldman Sachs.


Deniz Yilmaz W’21 is a Joseph Wharton Scholar studying Finance, Statistics and Engineering Entrepreneurship. She grew up in Istanbul, Turkey where she started her social business, El Emegi, which provided jobs for 10,000 rural women in the country’s Anatolian region, while still in high school. In past years, she has worked at Muhammad Yunus’s Think Tank in Dhaka, Bangladesh, to help advise and scale local social businesses. In addition, she has interned in various hedge funds, and has been exploring different entrepreneurship avenues. She is the current president of Wharton Retail Club, and she works with startups and does industry research through her involvement in the PEVC Club and Weiss Tech House. She is passionate about the food tech, retail and ecommerce industries. Deniz served in her home country’s national equestrian team, and in her free time, she loves cooking, traveling, skiing and discovering new restaurants.