Bryan Ritchie is the Chief Executive Office of Simba Chain, the API development platform to create decentralized and trustless apps to interface with smart contracts on multiple block chains. The company just raised its “A” round and is growing rapidly. More recently, Bryan was Notre Dame’s first vice president and associate provost for innovation, leading the University’s IDEA (Innovation, De-risking, and Enterprise Acceleration) Center, where he worked closely with deans, alumni, faculty, and students to commercialize intellectual property. Over 5 years he oversaw the formation of over 150 companies, was the general partner and chief investment officer for the Pit Road Fund, and was the founder of the IDEA Week entrepreneurship conference and celebration. Bryan has extensive experience in both industry and the academy. Before Notre Dame, he ran the venture capital firm GrowthSPORT. As president and CEO, he guided its investing activities, focusing primarily on seed-stage technology companies. He has formed multiple information technology companies of his own during his career and also held management positions with Century Software, Dayna Communications, IBM, Novell, IOMEGA, Megahertz, and 3Com. He has consulted for Eli Lilly, AstraZeneca, Ericsson, Seagate, Verizon, Givaudan, and over 100 other companies. Ritchie also spent four years directing technology commercialization at the University of Utah, first as associate vice president for technology venture development and then as associate vice president for research. He oversaw more than 200 new startups, more than $700 million in investment and grants, an average of 90 licenses per year, and 90+ patents per year. Bryan is a graduate of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, and holds an M.B.A. from Brigham Young University and a Ph.D. in political economy from Emory University. As a member of the faculty at Michigan State University, he rose from assistant to associate to full professor of political economy and was part of the core faculty of the Asian Studies Center. In addition, he served as director or co-director of two student entrepreneurship programs and as associate director for external strategy of the MSU BioEconomy Network, which coordinates the university’s initiatives to promote Michigan’s bioeconomy through research, policy and economic analysis, education, corporate and government collaborations, and commercialization. Fluent in Thai and conversant in several other Asian languages, Ritchie is the author of two books: Systemic Vulnerability and Sustainable Economic Growth: Skills and Upgrading in Southeast Asia and, with MSU’s Lindon Robison, Relationship Economics: The Social Capital Paradigm and its Application to Business, Politics, and Other Transactions.