by our Head of Story, Leah Sarich (May 2021)
Two new unlike minds have been added to the Funding Catalyst team! Welcome Dr.
Katie Greene and Ben Hilborn.
One of our fastest growing sectors is Health, and we’re delighted that Katie has joined us to help health ventures find early capital to grow their companies. Katie has a PhD in Biochemistry and has long been interested in the commercialization of research.
“I heard what Thin Air Labs was doing by prioritizing founders, by building with them, and by helping them develop their innovations,” says Katie. “I appreciated how much Thin Air was contributing and helping to grow the innovation ecosystem in Alberta, and wanted to help in whatever way I could.”
Ben comes to us after working at several startups in various roles, from engineering to business development, product management to sales and as a founder himself. He’s excited to help not just a few, but many, future-fit ventures grow.
“I love the startup world. The energy, the deep connection to solving a problem, and the idea that I could work with 5, 10, more startups, empathise with them, buy into their mission and align them with resources to help them reach that goal, it just seemed like a great way to operate in the innovation ecosystem.”
“We’ll lean in with founders, help them with their business model, refine their pitch and their vision, and help them realize their ‘why.’ --- Ben Hilborn, Funding Catalyst
Both Katie and Ben are passionate about helping ventures create the meaningful impact that is deeply rooted in the Thin Air Labs mission. As Funding Catalysts, they spend their time
matchmaking startups with the right funding programs at the right time. And that means, these organizations can start creating that impact for the customers and the ecosystem faster.
Ben explains, “we’ll lean in with founders, help them with their business model, refine their pitch and their vision, and help them realize their ‘why.’ It’s an ‘impact service’ to provide impact for these startups - we just happen to be good at writing grants.”
"There’s an immense amount of talent here so we need to make it easier for these researchers to stay in Alberta, to apply this talent in the province. " --- Dr. Katie Greene, Funding Catalyst
While working on her PhD at the University of Calgary, Katie noticed, “the desire in Alberta for more innovation. There’s an immense amount of talent here so we need to make it easier for these researchers to stay in Alberta, to apply this talent in the province. The bioinnovation venture space is very different, it’s wrapped in a lot of regulatory obligations that make commercialization more challenging and expensive - so let’s make it easier - so we can apply all of that research and create meaningful human impact. “
And that’s why Thin Air Labs was created... to ignite venture growth for greater human impact as a way to help the province transition to a regenerative economy, an economy that will thrive well into the future.