UIA Advisory Board

The UIA Advisory Board consists of Top Exemplary experts within strategically chosen markets these leaders in the industry will be available to appear at individual trade show events, live shows, educational programs, etc. as well as assisting the UIA Executive Team in achieving the UIA goal to be the indisputable leader in the Education, Innovation, and Invention Industry. Providing Guidance, Knowledge, Education and Resources to protect the Individual Inventor is a main stay of the UIA.

Joy Mangano

Joy’s amazing story came to life on the big screen in the movie “Joy”. The film was nominated for numerous awards and won the Best Actress Golden Globe for Jennifer Lawrence’s portrayal of Joy. 

In real life, as in the movie, Joy Mangano is an American inventor and entrepreneur best known for inventions such as the self-wringing Miracle Mop. Soon after Joy began appearing on QVC in 1992, she joined the Home Shopping Network. Joy is HSN’s most successful purveyor, with annual sales of more than $150 million and hourly sales regularly topping $1 million. 

A HSN executive wrote that Joy’s success is due to her ability to convey her passion, excitement, and pride with her viewers. Joy agrees, saying that while selling on television is an opportunity to reach millions of people, success requires genuine enthusiasm to reach people who can’t touch or try the product. 

Joy is now hosting the first-of-its-kind, live and shoppable competition series “America’s BIG Deal” featured on the USA Network, a must watch!

Jeff Shavitz

My business path has gone from corporate America to becoming an entrepreneur and independent business owner in the payment processing industry.

Following college, I worked as an Investment Banker at Lehman Brothers in the Corporate Finance/Mergers & Acquisitions Group and specialized in transactions ranging from $500 million – $1 billion.

Although working 80-100 hours, I didn’t feel vested in the deals and this wasn’t what I wanted in my professional life. I deferred business school and decided to leave my fast-paced, well-paying position to start up a 1-person business; friends would say “what are you thinking?” From my tiny New York apartment while still working on Wall Street, I created “Spectoculars”, a paper folding binocular; in 1991, I received a NFL license and sold 250,000 pairs that were distributed at Super Bowl XXX. Welcome to entrepreneurship!

Several years later, I co-founded Charge Card Systems Inc., a national credit card processing company that helped merchants with their processing requirements including the acceptance of Visa, MasterCard, American Express, and Discover.

The company grew to over 500 sales agents with 3 regional offices. In 2012, our business was sold to Card Connect, their largest acquisition at that time; in 2017, the company was acquired by First Data for $750 MM.

In the past 20 years, I have started several payments companies working with CEOs and CFOs. I work with them to explain the hidden fees of credit card processing, the 600+ various interchange rates, new regulatory fees, and share new technologies entering our marketplace.

Bob Circosta

 TV’s original home shopping host and helped create the mutli-billion-dollar TV home shopping industry – he sold the first product ever offered! 

Over the past 45 years, Bob has logged over 25,000 hours of LIVE selling on TV… made over 75,000 separate product presentations… and has, individually, sold over SIX BILLION DOLLARS in merchandise – earning him the title: “TV’s BILLION DOLLAR MAN.” 

Today, Bob is constantly sought after for his unique and proven marketing expertise. He teaches corporations, businesses and entrepreneurs how to create an impactful and profitable pitch to maximize their sales on various marketing platforms. 

In addition, Bob appears on TV shopping channels and social media platforms around the world. 

His popular book, “LIFE’S A PITCH” is a proven guide to successfully selling ANYTHING – ANYWHERE! 

Bob has been featured on ABC’s GOOD MORNING AMERICA, NBC’s TODAY SHOW, ABC’s 20/20 and in articles in USA TODAY and The WALL STREET JOURNAL. 

Bob received the first-ever “HSN LEGEND AWARD” for his contributions and lifetime achievements in the electronic retailing industry. 

Robert Jacobs

Author, speaker, actor, musician, sales and marketing professional since 1974 and founder of the Jazz Education Ensemble (https://jazzeducationensemble.org), is also Managing Partner of JLC Global Alliance (https://jlcglobal.net), a sales consulting firm with expertise in helping manufacturers, inventors and other consumer goods suppliers sell products to mass market retail chains in North and South America. Customer successes have included Walmart, Costco, Sam’s Club, Hobby Lobby, Lowe’s, Best Buy, Target and many more. One deal worth noting occurred in 2003 when he closed a $30 million deal with Costco for Kirkland Signature photo paper. Helping others set and accomplish positive goals is a key driver in Robert’s desire to help create a global society that benefits humanity’s long-term existence.

Robert earned his undergraduate degrees in music composition and marketing from San Francisco State University, and his MBA in business

ANDREW KAVOVIT,

Entrepreneur, Inventor, Actor, Producer
Andrew Kavovit is the CEO and Founder of Hatched Hub, a Product Agency and Retail-Tainment Specialist. With an early start as a creative entrepreneur, Kavovit found himself working as a professional actor at the age of 10 leading to a successful 35 year Commercial, Television and Film career which earned him an Emmy Award and Four Emmy Nominations. However, Andrew’s interest behind the camera led him to creating and producing content for companies such as Warner Brothers, MTV, The Hard Rock Resorts and Mattel. As creator and Executive Producer of the Television Series “Hatched” which aired on the CW, CBS and FOX Andrew blended his entertainment background with his passion for American Entrepreneurship and Invention. An inventor himself, Kavovit created and licensed one of the earliest lighting APP systems for easy control of holiday lighting as well as a smoke detection system for the cruise, car rental and hotel industries. Having the rare personal experience of successful appearances on SHARK TANK, MVP and HSN for his own products; Kavovit lends a unique perspective to emerging brands across the country.

Marc Portney

Marc Portney, is an American Entrepreneur, Investor and Business Advisor.

His street smart insights and deep knowledge of the retail landscape are invaluable when assessing the commercial viability of new products.

As President of Globlasource Infrastructure Partners, an international player in product development, manufacturing & sales, Portney works diligently to bring new products to market.

Marc is honored to be one of HSN’s All Star Entrepreneur for their American Dreams initiative.

As an investor, Portney heads a group of vc, who participate in high potential deals that he brings to the table.

Marc appears in the new Science Channel series ALL-AMERICAN MAKERS. The show features four amateur inventors each week, eager for an opportunity to take their product to market. Judged by two master makers, Brook Drumm and Brian Roe, and business magnate Portney, each inventor’s product is shown to consumers, broken down and examined to test their mettle and ultimate marketability. Portney and his team of savvy experts then decide if any of the inventions merit financial investment.

Karen Waksman

Founder and CEO of RetailMBA.com, has been selling to retail chains for over 20 years! Karen is also the Founder of a Retail Consultancy, a Rep Agency, as Well as a Top Publishing House for Consumer Product Brands – with well over 50+ Educational Training Programs and Books on How to Generate Revenue with your Consumer Products! Karen Waksman is also the proud Owner of Inventions.org. A Trade Association Focused on Helping Inventors Scale Their Businesses, which was originally called the Inventors Assistance League (IAL) – the Oldest Trade Association for Inventors Starting Back in 1962!

Karen has personally taught well over 100,000+ product entrepreneurs and companies across the globe on the subject of scaling their business with retailers at conferences, Retail MBA events and online. Her goal is to empower and inspire companies to transform their businesses by providing them all of the necessary information they need in order to become successful entrepreneurs!

Most importantly, Karen’s clients have utilized Retail MBA’s  time-tested sales formula to get their products into retailers such as Wal-Mart, Best Buy, Home Depot, Lowes, Kroger Grocery Stores, Bed Bath and Beyond, BuyBuyBaby, Groupon and much, much more! Check Out RetailMBA.com to learn more.

Mike Watts

Mike Watts is an experienced entrepreneur who has 6 startup companies under his belt, including founding three consecutive multi-million dollar companies in the last 10 years. Mike has successful exits from three companies including one for over $6 million and he even struck a deal with Daymond John from Shark Tank. Mike currently serves as CEO of LoveHandle, a fast-growing American manufacturer of patented custom smartphone grips and accessories where he leads a team of 35 full-time employees proudly manufacturing exclusively in the USA.

Mike is a regular keynote speaker for entrepreneur and inventor groups as well a guest professor at Texas A&M University’s entrepreneur program in College Station. Mike is a 3-time winner of the Aggie 100 Award for fastest growing companies and has been listed on the Fortune 5000 multiple times.

Judy Edwards

Judy Edwards along with son Bobby and husband Bill are the designers and creators of Squatty Potty® toilet stools. 

Judy, invented the Squatty Potty at the “early age” of 60 after a lifetime of colon issues. Judy was seeking a natural and inexpensive solution that would help correct and heal the problems she was experiencing. That’s when she came up with the Squatty Potty. Squatty Potty is designed to work with any toilet. It’s comfortable, ergonomic, easy to use, attractive and affordable.

Nisha Sawhney

Nisha Sawhney, the founder of SnS Design, Inc, specializes in supporting businesses, entrepreneurs and manufacturers with ideas that revolutionize industry. 

Utilizing holistic innovative product design solutions, Nisha has proven successes with clients throughout the world, including in the US, UK, Switzerland, Japan, Israel, India, Brazil, Argentina, Italy, Hong Kong and China. Specializing in a wide range of products from baby cribs to electric car charging stations to medical devices.  Nisha worked as both the product designer and project manager for global consumer product companies Haier, LG, Whirlpool, Westinghouse, Amana, Amcor, Edi-Baur, Rosco, LiFeng, Temptu, Zipz wine (Biggest Deal in Shark Tank History) and many more.

Nisha’s expertise includes services from A to Z – research, conceptual design, invention, product development, engineering, prototype, patent related support, branding, packaging, graphics, point of purchase, 3d Renderings, pre-sale presentation, mechanical design and engineering, manufacturing, and retail placement.

A valedictorian earning a Master’s Degree in industrial design and a Bachelor’s degree in architecture, Nisha has served as a juror and speaker for a decade at The International Consumer Electronics Show.

Nisha volunteers assisting MAKE48 inventors, has taught MBA students at NYU, high school students at Teen Design Fair and underprivileged female youth.

Featured in FORBES magazine as “The Woman Who Could Design Anything, And Did”, Nisha has been awarded utility and design patents for consumer products. 

Rick Hopper

If you have ever crossed paths with Rick, you may know how much fun he has and how much he loves to share it with everyone around him. He is a one-of-a-kind entrepreneur, inventor, motivator, husband, father, and friend. Tired of constantly dropping, scratching and losing your expensive glasses? With Rick’s innovative Readerest® you easily attach your eyewear to any article of clothing and your glasses will be with you at all times.

All you have to do is place the plastic back-plate on the inside of your clothing and the front clip to the outside and the magnets will automatically attach and self-center. No pins are used! Readerest reading glasses are loaded with technology to provide the ultimate protection and comfort for your eyes. Whether you’re looking for readers to use daily or on specific occasions you can rely on Readerest glasses to give you premium protection and functionality.

Sean Murphy

Sean is a graduate of the esteemed McCombs School of Business at the University of Texas, Austin. He is a true believer in capitalism and the American dream. For the past 34 years, Sean has thrived within the financial industry and has spoken coast to coast to well over 200,000 people. 

He has been voted a 5 Star Wealth Manager and is in the final stages of completing his book – Success Doesn’t Care How You Feel!

Sean served for 4 years as the CEO of the Inventors Center of Kansas City widely regarded as one of the nation’s most successful inventor organizations assisting inventors and entrepreneurs in bringing their products successfully to market.

Sean was one of the principals involved in creating and launching the invention-based TV program Make48, currently in its 5th season on PBS. Sean served as both a MC and a presentation coach for contestants on the show.

Sean is a mentor at the University of Missouri Kansas City Bloch School of Business E-Scholars program. Students in the program are challenged to create an actual business within 9 months that can scale to $5 Million in 5 years. As a mentor, Sean’s specialties include sales training, time management and communication.

David E. Consigli

David is a member of the Advisory Board and has recently been appointed the UIA’s treasurer. With over 34 years of experience, David’s skills and expertise are highly sought-after by a wide range of clients. David is a member of the AICPA Business Valuation Committee and a Massachusetts Collaborative Law Council Board Member.

He is credentialed with the Accreditation in Business Valuation (ABV) awarded by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and has been admitted as an expert in the United States Federal Court, Massachusetts Superior Court and Massachusetts Family and Probate Courts.

Jon Kestenbaum

Jon is a lawyer by education and entrepreneur by trade.  He is extremely passionate about pioneering initiatives that will change the way we live. He spent his career focusing on people, process, and technology — the ingredients that he truly believes are fundamental to building a successful business. 

Chris Krimitsos

Has cemented his place in emerging technologies, as evidenced by his success with a global podcasting event that set back-to-back world records and a first of its kind blockchain event. Time and again Chris has solidified his reputation as a thought leader, whether as a speaker, an event organizer, or in the media. Along the way, his name twice became etched in the Guinness World Records™ as he championed the largest attendance for a virtual podcasting conference in one week, first in 2020, and then breaking it with a new mark one year later. Always an early adopter, Chris became immersed in crypto before the mass population heard of it or understood it. Thus, known for bringing people together, he birthed the Florida Bitcoin and Blockchain Summit in 2021, the first event of its kind in the state. It’s common to find Chris at the leading edge of the next big technology wave. As a result, he has become a go-to for keynotes, interviews, and forecasts. Chris has successfully grown Podfest™ Multimedia Expo to an international conference with upwards of three thousand registrants from what started as a meetup at a local café in 2013. Content creators have benefited from his knack for community building as they build relationships AND their podcasts and YouTube channels through the platforms he has provided. These experiences, whether in-person or virtual, are built from the foundation of Chris having created more than 2,000 live events in his professional career. As a trend setter, Chris identified podcasting’s popularity and responded with a 2017 documentary about the evolving medium. The film has been placed on YouTube for global distribution, after Page 1 of 3 having initially been released on Amazon, where Chris also had a book (“Start Ugly”) hit #1 in Business Leadership and HR. Specializing in emerging technologies, from blockchain to NFTs to cryptocurrency, podcasting, and on-demand audio, Chris is a leading go-to innovator who continues to give a voice to the global creator community

Aaron Cordovez

CoFounder of Zulay Kitchen, has gotten to the top 100 ranked Amazon Sellers in the world.
With sales on Amazon well into the 9 figures, with full ownership of the companies between him and his wife, he’s gotten into the top 0.0001% of sellers and shares what he’s learned on his podcast: Ecomm Leaders.

Having invented several houseware products with the help of hired designers and engineers, Zulay Kitchen (www.zulaykitchen.com) is at the forefront of innovation in kitchen products.

Further, being a programmer by trade he learned the ins and outs of the technical aspects of Amazon in order to achieve the sweet spot of artistic marketing and technological aspects of advertising and ranking.

He also has founded Samurai Seller (www.samuraiseller.com) which manages tens of millions of dollars in ad spend on Amazon for sellers. The automated Amazon Ads software is cutting edge and helps sellers DRASTICALLY improve sales on Amazon at lower costs.

Having mastered Amazon and the advertising, his speciality expands out into many online marketplaces such as Target, Bed Bath and Beyond, Home Depot, Walmart and more utilizing backend custom solutions to help other sellers master these platforms, Aaron can be reached on LinkedIn.

Chris Landano

Helping people is in my blood. I was a professional rescuer in New York City for over 25 years. What led me to launch Inventor Rescue was hearing all the terrible stories of inventors being deceived for tens of thousands of dollars by fraudulent companies using the same tactics and schemes. I got tired of watching all the advertisements on TV and online that were completely false and deceiving information. Being an inventor with a professional first responder background from New York City, motivated me to try and make a difference to help new and naive independent inventors not get scammed by dishonest and misleading independent consultants and companies.

Chris Annoual

Chris is a serial entrepreneur from Miami, Florida who founded C1 Aerospace – a jet engine sales business that built and sold JT8D jet engines around the world. After realizing his passion wasn’t in aviation he started solving problems in the world with products.

He currently has founded three 7 figure businesses and is building another 2 in public.

Chris most recently founded Pump Pal® a silicone gas glove that protects peoples hands from coming into contact with filthy gas pump handles while offering an eco-friendly and sustainable solution. Pump Pal was designed to reduce the spread of bacteria prevalent on gas pump handles while being a safe alternative to disposable plastic gloves offered at gas stations. Within the first year Pump Pal has sold over 100,000 units around the world and has grown into a 7-figure brand.

Pump Pal was invited to an Emmys celebrity gifting event and was featured in Allure magazine with Viola Davis as her favorite holiday gift.

Pump Pal has become a brand trusted by hundreds of thousands of people and continues to create sustainable products.

Chris continues to solve real world problems by building products that people need. He also dedicates his time to helping and mentoring other entrepreneurs and inventors.

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