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Seed Leadership


Jesper Sørensen - Faculty Director & Executive Director

Robert A. and Elizabeth R. Jeffe Professor of Organizational Behavior

Susan Ford Dorsey Faculty Fellow for 2014-2015

Jesper B. Sørensen, Faculty Director and Executive Director

Company structure and organizational behavior of most small to medium enterprises are major factors regarding their ability to innovate and grow. Jesper Sørensen  leads development and implementation of programs to address such organizational challenges. His work specializes in the dynamics of organizational and strategic change and their implications for individuals and their careers. His research on firm outcomes has focused on the impact of organizational structure and culture on organizational learning, performance, and innovation. Currently, Sørensen is engaged in a large-scale project on the determinants of entrepreneurial behavior that examines, in part, how work environments shape rates of entrepreneurship.

Raj Chellaraj - Chief Operating Officer

Raj Chellaraj - Chief Operating Officer

Raj Chellaraj is the Chief Operating Officer of Seed and also the Associate Dean for Finance and Administration at the Stanford Graduate School of Business. Prior to joining Stanford, Raj had extensive experience in government and industry. He held senior management positions at the US Department of State, and the US Agency for International Development. In the private sector, Raj had leadership roles in global corporations. 


Hau Lee - Faculty Advisor, Value Chain Innovations

Thoma Professor of Operations, Information and Technology

Hau Lee, Faculty Director and Director of Research

Prof. Hau Lee is a noted supply chain expert and also winner of the MBA Distinguished Teaching Award. Lee recently helped transform the Gambian and Zambian health care delivery systems through the comprehensive management of national fleets of vehicles. His research focuses on supply chain management, work that addresses how to get products or services to their destination by managing the flow of materials, information, and money. His research has resulted, among other things, in the building of computer models for industrial implementation, as well as the development of strategies and operational concepts for practitioners. He has also consulted on the logistics of hazelnut distribution from Bhutan.

James Patell - Faculty Advisor, Product and Service Innovations

Herbert Hoover Professor of Public and Private Management

Katherine and David deWilde Faculty Fellow for 2013-2014

James Patell

Prof. Jim Patell, a winner of the MBA Distinguished Teaching Award, leads the Extreme course at Stanford and will also develop and implement capacity-building programs on the ground. Building on his years of teaching Design for Extreme Affordability, Patell’s research and teaching centers on business process and product design, operations management, manufacturing, and cost accounting. A popular and demanding teacher, Patell has been a champion of the Public Management Program, which focuses on government, nonprofit organizations, and public service. He codirects the Product Realization Network at Stanford, and he is a founding faculty member of the Hasso Plattner Institute of Design (the, where he teaches Design for Extreme Affordability.



Davis Albohm - Associate Director, Global Operations

Davis Albohm

Davis Albohm previously served as Assistant Director of Stanford GSB's Value Chain Innovation Initiative, where he managed on-the-ground research for a Gates Foundation-funded impact evaluation of Riders for Health. The goal of the evaluation was to demonstrate the effectiveness and efficiency of contracting out vehicle fleet management as an approach to strengthening health delivery. For three years, he split his time between Stanford and the research office in Livingstone, Zambia, where he managed a team of data collection officers and consultants, and oversaw government relations and NGO partnerships. 

Prior to his time at Stanford, Davis served as a strategy consultant for several NGOs including Amnesty International, UNICEF, and the International Rescue Committee. Davis earned an MA in African Studies at Stanford, where he studied international development, political history and economy. He also attended Trinity College in Connecticut, where he received a BA in history. 

Karen Bysiewicz, Esq.- Director, Transformation Program

Karen Bysiewicz

Karen Bysiewicz leads Seed's design and development of education and student engagement programs. Before joining Seed, Karen served as the Associate Dean for Graduate and International Programs and Professor of International Practice Skills in the Dickinson School of Law at Penn State University. In this role, Karen developed educational curriculum for degree and professional certificate programs for Penn State Law, in the US, Turkey, and United Arab Emirates.

Karen also directed the Master of Laws Program for international attorneys at Penn State Law, acted as program advisor for the International Justice Externship at The Hague, and managed the student exchange programs with the University of Cape Town and others. In addition, she designed and implemented an international internship program with placements in Brazil, Chile, and Sweden. Prior to her time at Penn State Law, Karen practiced international trade law in New York and Brussels. She served as an attorney with the Commission of the European Union and later represented trade law clients in transactional and litigation matters with the law firm of Coudert Brothers (now Baker & McKenzie) in Brussels and New York. In private practice and as a law professor she has taught in both masters level practical skills courses and short term-professional training for legal and business leaders.

Karen is a summa cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Yale University with a BA in history and earned a JD with honors from Duke University Law School. Prior to law school she lived and worked in France on a Fulbright Fellowship.

Emmanuel Kitcher - Regional Manager, SEED West Africa

Emmanuel Kitcher

Emmanuel serves as the senior manager at Seed West Africa. During a career spanning over two and half decades, Emmanuel worked in various capacities and in several indigenous as well as multinational manufacturing companies. These ranged from Cocoa processing companies to others dealing with Chocolate & Confectionery, Hair-care and Cosmetics, Dairy products, Plastics and delivery of potable water in the underserved urban and rural communities. His exposure to different manufacturing sectors allows him to bring to Seed a wealth of knowledge and a rich experience in setting up and running successful businesses. With the exception of one company, he has been directly involved in the startups of at least six different companies three of which had successful IPOs or acquisitions. He has successfully consulted for and served in advisory roles in several companies and start-ups. 

Emmanuel holds a BSc in Industrial Biochemistry from the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, and a Post Graduate Diploma in Chocolate and Confectionery Technology from ZDS in Germany. He is also an Executive MBA Finance graduate of the Business School of the University of Ghana, Legon.  He has served and still serves on a number of boards, one of which is a not for profit healthcare start-up.

Rita Lonhart - Associate Director, Global Operations

Rita Lonhart

As Associate Director of Global Operations, Rita drives the definition and implementation of global operational processes to support and scale Seed’s global efforts. In addition to her work at Seed, Rita served as a member of the teaching team for the two-quarter interdisciplinary Stanford course, Design for Extreme Affordability.

Prior to her time with Seed, Rita has worked in the Economics Department at Stanford University, at the World Affairs Council in San Francisco, and the Overseas Development Institute in London.

Rita holds an MSc with honors from the London School of Economics and Political Science in History of International Relations and is an alumna of the University of California, Santa Cruz, where she double-majored with honors in German Studies and European History. She is also a graduate of the Frontier Market Scout Program at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies in Monterey, California.

Jeffrey Prickett - Director, Global Operations

Jeff Prickett

Jeff Prickett currently serves as the Director of Global Operations, working under the direction of faculty and Stanford Seed management to identify opportunities, develop strategy, and lead, implement, and administer programs.  Before becoming Director of Global Operations, Jeff served as Senior Financial Analyst for Seed, assisting with the management of all financial aspects of operations at Stanford and overseas. 

Before joining Seed, Jeff was Director of Management & Operations for United States Peace Corps in Pretoria, South Africa, and N'Djamena, Chad.  He obtained his MA in Education from Teachers College – Columbia University, and BS in Accountancy from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign.

Kathryn C. Wendell - Director, Program Delivery

Kathryn Wendell

Kathryn Wendell was previously a Global Social Performance Advisor at Chevron, where she led the development of strategic social investment and corporate responsibility programs. Earlier in her career, Kathryn was a Sustainable Development specialist at the World Bank, Program Manager at the Emerging Markets Private Equity Association (EMPEA), Peace Corps Volunteer in Ecuador, and Microloan Officer at Accion. Kathryn holds an MBA from UC Berkeley, an MA in Socio-cultural Anthropology from Yale, and a BA with honors from Dartmouth College.

Kathryn has fifteen years of experience managing economic development projects and creating shared value around the world. At Chevron, Kathryn was the project manager of multi-million dollar economic social investment initiatives in several countries where the company operates. At the World Bank, Kathryn supported sustainable development projects in Latin America, managing Global Environment Facility (GEF) grants. As a Peace Corps Volunteer in Ecuador, Kathryn launched savings cooperatives for local women that are still operational, drawing on her prior experience as a microloan officer. Over the years, Kathryn has been selected as an Aspen Institute Environmental Scholar, a Gap Corporate Responsibility Scholar, a Coca-Cola World Fund Scholar, and a Dartmouth College Angulo World Fund Scholar. Kathryn enjoys adventure traveling - she has visited over 65 countries around the world.

Rita Winkler - Associate Director, Communications

Rita Winkler

Before joining Seed, Rita was Director of Online Technologies and Assistant Director of MBA Admissions at the Stanford Graduate School of Business where she provided strategic direction for diverse communication channels to support the marketing and outreach strategies for prospects, applicants, and admitted students interested in the Stanford MBA Program.

Prior to Stanford, Rita was a successful entrepreneur, co-founder, and managing partner at Haukom Associates, a San Francisco-based agency providing custom-engineered marketing and training solutions to clients in biotechnology, health care, higher education and natural sciences. While at Haukom Associates, Rita produced an award-winning interactive multimedia history curriculum for the State of California; reference titles in cooperation with ABC News, Sony, and Stanford University faculty; and several projects for audiences as diverse as physicians, government agencies, museums, and print and online publishers.

A native of Germany, Rita is a member and past chapter president of Gamma Theta Upsilon, an international honor society recognizing geography's next generation of leaders, and served on the Board of Directors of the International Interactive Communications Society. She holds degrees in Anthropology and Geography from San Francisco State University, where she concentrated in Geographic Information Systems and Remote Sensing, graduating magna cum laude.

Mitos Zshornack - Program Delivery Administrator

Mitos Zshornack

Mitos comes to Seed with a strong background in administrative management. She has a bachelors degree in philosophy and a law degree from the University of Philippines, and she is a graduate of the Management Development Program at the Asian Institute of Management in Manila.