Kelsey August

Kelsey August is the owner of Lone Star Direct, a marketing firm she founded at 24 years old. She has been a serial entrepreneur for the last two decades. She loves to create and grow business ventures.

Kelsey has been a Board Member and President of EO, The Entrepreneurs Organization; has served on the Board of Athletics for Ohio University; and was also the President of the American Marketing Association. She has won distinguished awards along the way: Austin Under Forty Winner, was finalist for Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year, and was the youngest female entrepreneur to make the Inc 500 fastest growing company list.

Kelsey has been an active angel investor since 1998. She enjoys mentoring her portfolio companies. She has participated as a mentor in SKU (formerly Incubation Station) and is currently at mentor at ATI. Kelsey joined the CTAN Board in January 2017.


Laurie Cercone

Laurie Cercone has been a senior sales leader for both small to Fortune 50 companies. With a BBA in Marketing and Finance from UT Austin, she started her career with Mobil Oil managing both company-owned and franchised operations in both Houston and Southern California. After leaving Mobil, she joined a food startup, where she grew the company from $2M to over $100M, and stayed on after being acquired HJ Heinz. As a Division Sales Manager, she managed several of Heinz’ newly acquired subsidiaries. She now manages the sales division, for Vie de France, a manufacturer of high-end bakery products where she oversees retail and foodservice channels. She specializes in building and managing sales teams, hiring and managing brokers, building distribution, and managing corporate-account relationships.

After living in Southern California for over a decade and getting her MBA at the University of Southern California, Laurie moved back to Austin in 2015. She has since completed a Masters in Technology Commercialization in from UT Austin. Laurie has been a mentor with several Austin-based accelerators including Texas Venture Labs, SKU, and New Chip. She has been a member of CTAN since 2017 and has served as the CPG Lead for two years. Laurie joined the CTAN Board in October 2019.


Wayne Heideman

Wayne Heideman spends his time with Austin tech startups leveraging the experience he gained while living in Silicon Valley during the dot-com days (late 80s through the early 00s) and in Austin since. He focuses on the management of and technology behind complex software businesses ranging from embedded and some B2C to enterprise and B2B.

Wayne currently has a half-dozen active Board, Advisory and part-time operational roles. He was most recently the CEO of Capsenta, a UT Austin Computer Science spinout, which was acquired by in mid 2019. Wayne joined the CTAN Board in October 2019.


Joseph Liu

Joseph Liu has worked in the IT industry since 1998, with overseas experience in Taiwan, China, and Singapore. He holds BS degree in Engineering for Sustainable Environment from National Taiwan University and MBA degree from the University of Texas at Austin. He is a candidate for the Master of Jurisprudence from St. Mary’s School of Law at St. Mary’s University. Joseph also holds a Level 1 CrossFit Trainer certificate.

Joseph has been an active CTAN member since 2015 and served as the B2B Software Sector Interest Group (SIG) Lead in 2019. His investment portfolio is comprised of  companies across Life Sciences, B2B Software, Hardware, and CPG industries. He joined the CTAN Board in October 2019.


Rebekah Ryan

Rebekah Ryan joined the CTAN Board in January 2018.




J.D. Stanley III

J.D. Stanley III is a seasoned executive, angel investor, board member, and passionate pioneer. He has executive experiences at large corporations, small startups, and non-profit. He previously worked as an executive at Cisco for close to 20 years leading innovation, R&D, and various teams across engineering, M&A, consulting, and P&Ls. He is also a co-founder and Chief Operating Officer of hot new startup IoT/AI.

In addition to his business expertise, he has deep science and technical expertise with patents and pending patents in AI/ML, IoT, cybersecurity, and networking. J.D. possess strong commercialization expertise for startups in the SBIR government funding areas, and sits on numerous boards, including Texas Department of Transportation Texas Taskforce, where he helps in ground & air autonomous and AI/ML innovations for transportation and smart cities. JD joined the CTAN Board in October 2019.


David Veal

David Veal is the Chief Investment Officer of a $2.5 billion public pension plan in Austin serving more than 16,000 beneficiaries. Prior to his current role he served as the Chief Investment Officer of a large single-family office based in Houston as well as in senior roles with the Teacher Retirement System of Texas and the Employees Retirement System of Texas.

David also spent a decade working in New York City for Morgan Stanley as an equity research analyst, most recently with lead coverage of 30 US healthcare services stocks. David also served for six years as a United States Navy officer, where he was twice decorated with the Navy Commendation Medal.

David has earned the Chartered Financial Analyst, Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst, and Financial Risk Manager designations. He holds an MBA with High Distinction from the Ross School of Business and a Bachelor of Industrial Engineering with honors from Auburn University. David joined the CTAN Board in January 2019.


Liang Xia

Liang Xia leads a processor design team in AustinHe has more than ten years of experience in the semiconductor industry, including working with a semiconductor startup until its acquisition in 2010. He holds B.S. and M.S. degrees in Electrical Engineering and Computer Architecture with a focus on Embedded Processors and VLSI from The University of Texas at Austin. He is also fluent in Mandarin.

Liang is relatively new to angel investing and enjoys building a diversified startup investment portfolio. He’s been an active CTAN member since 2015 and served as the organization’s Hardware Sector Interest Group (SIG) Lead in 2018. Liang joined the CTAN Board in January 2019