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Advisory Board

Grazia started her career in banking with Irving Trust (New York). She moved to investment banking and worked for Citicorp Investment Banking (London, Rome), and Bank of America Securities (San Francisco) as Vice President Capital Markets. After leaving the finance industry she worked for several years as development director for the Institute of International Education (IIE).

Currently she is working for Sotheby’s International Realty. Grazia brings to her real estate clients a strong sense of value and financial expertise. In addition, her real estate clients can count on her exceptional client service focus, marketing and negotiation skills.

Grazia is known in the Bay Area community for her dedication to philanthropic work centered on fostering entrepreneurship, especially across countries and with youth. She is a member of the Program Committee of the BizWorld Foundation, member of the Board of Governance of the Business Association Italy America (BAIA) and member of the Financial Women Association (FWA). She is also involved with the work of ASTIA and WeareWatermark (formerly the Forum for Women Executives and Entrepreneurs).

Grazia has a J.D. from University of Milan and a M.A. with honors from John Hopkins University, School of International Studies (SAIS).

Michele serves as business development officer for U.S. Bank Institutional Trust and Custody. In this role Michele is responsible for new business efforts focused on registered investment advisors. Her previous responsibilities include institutional relationships vice president for Tealwood Asset Management, as well as vice president and divisional sales director for Ameriprise Financial Services Asset Management division.

Michele studied Economics and Philosophy at the University of Minnesota and in located in San Francisco, California. Involved in the Bay Area Community, Michele serves on the board of directors for the Financial Women’s Association of San Francisco and leads a women’s committee for the Chartered Financial Analysts Society of San Francisco.

Eric is the founder and CEO of Media Cause, a digital marketing agency that works exclusively with nonprofits and causes. Media Cause launched in 2010 and has worked with over 50 US nonprofits, global NGOs and local community foundations. Eric is also the founder and President of Social Good Labs, an incubator for new nonprofits and social good startups. As a social entrepreneur and advisor, Eric is passionate about developing scalable solutions to global issues by leveraging the power of the internet and technology.

In 2009, Eric was a co-founder of Tallwave, a startup/business accelerator and was responsible for building the companies second portfolio company, Ethology, a digital advertising agency. Prior to Tallwave, Eric spent five years at Google where he played a significant role in important program launches, built new teams, and ran Google’s SEM/Agency councils. Eric received an EMG/Founder’s award from Google’s Executive Management Group for his work on the creation and rollout of the multi-billion dollar AdWords API program in 2008. Before joining Google in 2004, Eric worked with several online media startups including America Online after receiving a degree in economics from the University of California at Santa Barbara. Eric lives in Marin County, CA with his family. 

Marina is a Managing Director at Accenture and is based in San Francisco. She is part of the Financial Services practice.  Prior to joining Accenture, Marina was the Head of Global Sourcing (CPO) for Visa and prior to that at Providian Financial. Marina started out her career practicing corporate law at a major San Francisco law firm and then in house at Providian Financial before switching to the business side.   

Marina has a BS and MBA from Berkeley- Haas and a JD from UC Berkeley Law (Boalt Hall).  Marina lives in Orinda with her husband and two children.  Marina is active in the community and is currently serving on the BizWorld Advisory Board, the Haas Alumni Council and is President of the Goan Institute.  Previously, Marina served on the Women’s Initiative Contra Costa County Board.

Marina Gracias is a Managing Director at Accenture and is based in San Francisco.  She is part of the Financial Services practice.  Prior to joining Accenture, Marina was the Head of Global Sourcing (CPO) for Visa and prior to that at Providian Financial. Marina started out her career practicing corporate law at a major San Francisco law firm and then in house at Providian Financial before switching to the business side.  

Marina has a BS and MBA from Berkeley- Haas and a JD from UC Berkeley Law (Boalt Hall).  Marina lives in Orinda with her husband and two children.   Marina is active in the community and is currently serving on the BizWorld Advisory Board, the Haas Alumni Council and is President of the Goan Institute.  Previously, Marina served on the Women’s Initiative Contra Costa County Board.

Michele Hanson serves as business development officer for U.S. Bank Institutional Trust and Custody. In this role Michele is responsible for new business efforts focused on registered investment advisors. Her previous responsibilities include institutional relationships vice president for Tealwood Asset Management, as well as vice president and divisional sales director for Ameriprise Financial Services Asset Management division.

Michele studied Economics and Philosophy at the University of Minnesota and is located in San Francisco, California. Involved in the Bay Area Community, Michele serves on the board of directors for the Financial Women’s Association of San Francisco and leads a women’s committee for the Chartered Financial Analysts Society of San Francisco.

Rachael brings over 15 years of life sciences experience to Bruin Biometrics (BBI). With various roles in Marketing, R&D, and Finance, Rachael has launched over 6 new biopharmaceutical and medical device products.  Most recently, Rachael served as a Global Head of Strategic Asset Management at Onyx Pharmaceuticals, prior to its acquisition by Amgen. Previously, Rachael has held Marketing roles at Pfizer, and was a management consultant at Deloitte Consulting, where she served as the West Coast lead for Life Sciences Commercial Strategy and Operations. 
Rachael received her MBA from Kellogg School of Management and B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania.  

Marina Gracias is a Managing Director at Accenture and is based in San Francisco. She is part of the Financial Services practice. Prior to joining Accenture, Marina was the Head of Global Sourcing (CPO) for Visa and prior to that at Providian Financial. Marina started out her career practicing corporate law at a major San Francisco law firm and then in house at Providian Financial before switching to the business side.  

Marina has a BS and MBA from Berkeley- Haas and a JD from UC Berkeley Law (Boalt Hall).  Marina lives in Orinda with her husband and two children. Marina is active in the community and is currently serving on the BizWorld Advisory Board, the Haas Alumni Council and is President of the Goan Institute.  Previously, Marina served on the Women’s Initiative Contra Costa County Board.

Marina Gracias is a Managing Director at Accenture and is based in San Francisco. She is part of the Financial Services practice. Prior to joining Accenture, Marina was the Head of Global Sourcing (CPO) for Visa and prior to that at Providian Financial. Marina started out her career practicing corporate law at a major San Francisco law firm and then in house at Providian Financial before switching to the business side.  

Marina has a BS and MBA from Berkeley- Haas and a JD from UC Berkeley Law (Boalt Hall).  Marina lives in Orinda with her husband and two children. Marina is active in the community and is currently serving on the BizWorld Advisory Board, the Haas Alumni Council and is President of the Goan Institute.  Previously, Marina served on the Women’s Initiative Contra Costa County Board.

Rachael Lester is currently the Vice President of Marketing for Bruin Biometrics, an early stage medical technology company developing and commercializing diagnostics for early detection and prevention of serious illness.Rachael has over 15 years of broad and deep experience in healthcare and life sciences across Research, New Product Planning & Innovation Management, Sales & Marketing, Corporate Strategy & Development (LM&A), and Financial Planning.Previously she was Head of Strategic Asset Management for Onyx Pharmaceuticals, where she led Onyx’s corporate strategic planning process, portfolio management & pipeline planning, valuation & financial planning. Rachael joined Onyx from Deloitte Consulting Strategy & Operations Practice where she advised Life Sciences clients on a range of topics from Marketing & Sales to Mergers & Acquisitions.Rachael is passionate about the power of education and innovation to inspire and bring economic prosperity, and has worked with several not-for-profit organizations, including Ubuntu Education Fund and Kham Aid, to bring these ideas and skills to people around the globe. Rachael has a B.A., University of Pennsylvania, Neurobiology and Psychology and an M.B.A., Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. 

John is First Vice President of Wealth Management and Senior Portfolio Manager with The Cypress Group at Morgan Stanley Smith Barney. John spearheads the team’s financial planning efforts, helping clients analyze their education, retirement, cash flow, estate and philanthropic planning needs. He also analyzes fixed income and alternative investment solutions for the team. Prior to joining Morgan Stanley Smith Barney John worked at a boutique investment bank specializing in individual fixed income issues and then with a team at AG Edwards that dealt primarily with municipal bond issues. John majored in International Business with a Minor in Business Law at California Polytechnic University. He has also earned the nationally recognized Certified Financial Planner designation. John currently lives in the Mission District with his wife Julie and is an avid foodie and enjoys frequenting the Bay Area food scene.

John Lin is First Vice President of Wealth Management and Senior Portfolio Manager with The Cypress Group at Morgan Stanley Smith Barney. John spearheads the team’s financial planning efforts, helping clients analyze their education, retirement, cash flow, estate and philanthropic planning needs. He also analyzes fixed income and alternative investment solutions for the team. Prior to joining Morgan Stanley Smith Barney John worked at a boutique investment bank specializing in individual fixed income issues and then with a team at AG Edwards that dealt primarily with municipal bond issues. John majored in International Business with a Minor in Business Law at California Polytechnic University. He has also earned the nationally recognized Certified Financial Planner designation. John currently lives in the Mission District with his wife Julie and is an avid foodie and enjoys frequenting the Bay Area food scene.

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