BOSTON–TiE Boston, one of the region’s largest organizations supporting the Massachusetts entrepreneurial ecosystem, announced the recipients of its 2018 Entrepreneurship Awards, to be presented at this year’s annual gala.

The black-tie gala will take place on Thursday, December 13th at the Four Seasons Boston and the awards highlight the achievements of innovators and entrepreneurs across categories such as venture capital, digital health, B2B & B2C technology and robotics and automation, TiE Boston said in a statement.

The nominating committee selected individuals who have created or shaped a category through a significant contribution in their field of work, deemed “mission-critical” to the innovation economy, and have contributed to the well-being of the community through time, money, mentoring, guidance, etc. TiE Boston is recognizing its charter members, as well as individuals across numerous categories who exemplify TiE’s values by supporting entrepreneurship with an eye towards giving back to the community, the statement said.

Amar Sawhney

Lifetime Achievement Award honoree, Amar Sawhney, has founded six companies, including Confluent Surgical (acquired by Covidien), Ocular Therapeutix, Incept LLC and Augmenix, which was recently acquired by Boston Scientific. He has been honored with numerous business and technology awards, including being named one of the “White House’s Champions of Change” by President Obama, the MIT Global Indus Technovator award and the E&Y Regional Entrepreneur of the Year award.

Related article:

TiE Boston to Bestow Lifetime Achievement Award to Technology Entrepreneur Amar Sawhney

2018 Awardees include:

Category: Digital Health

Yvonne Hao

Award: Leader

Name: Yvonne Hao, COO & CFO

Company: PillPack,

Yvonne Hao is currently the COO and CFO of PillPack. She has held various positions, including Operating Partner, at Bain Capital from 2008 to 2016, and has been the interim CEO or CEO at several companies including Gymboree and D&M Holdings.

PillPack is a full-service online pharmacy that manages medication. They fill, sort, and deliver a personalized packet of medication based on the needs and schedule of the consumer. PillPack was recently acquired by Amazon for $1bn.[Source: Crunchbase]

Award: Rising Star

Rushika Fernandopulle

Name: Dr. Rushika Fernandopulle, Co-Founder & CEO

Company: Iora Health,

Dr. Rushika Fernandopulle is a physician who has spent more than a decade of his career involved in efforts to improve the healthcare quality for patients. He is currently the co-founder and CEO of Iora Health. He earned his AB, MD, and MPP from Harvard University where he is a member of the faculty.

Iora Health ensures that every patent gets a qualified personal physician, as well as a personal health coach, who will stay in close contact with patients between visits and helps the patients achieve their health goals.[Source: Crunchbase]

Category: B2B Solutions

Kris Canekeratne

Award: Leader

Company: Virtusa,

Name: Kris Canekeratne, Chairman and CEO

Kris Canekeratne co-founded Virtusa in 1996 based on his core belief that software development practices could and should embrace the same efficiencies achieved by mature industries such as automotive and manufacturing. Kris oversees Virtusa’s strategic direction and all day-to-day operations.

Virtusa Corporation is a global provider of information technology consulting and outsourcing services that accelerate business outcomes for Global 2000 companies and leading software vendors in banking and financial services, insurance, healthcare, telecommunications, technology, and media & entertainment. [Source: Crunchbase]

Stefania Mallett

Award: Rising Star

Name: Stefania Mallett, CEO & Co-Founder

Company: ezCater,

Stefania Mallett has spent over 25 years building and growing technology-enabled companies that solve real business problems. She is currently the CEO and co-founder of ezCater. She also co-founded and successfully sold InSite Marketing Technology.

ezCater is the world’s largest marketplace for corporate catering. They connect businesspeople with a database of reliable corporate caterers that can handle any request, anywhere in the US. ezCater has recently acquired Paris-based GoCater in their first steps to expand the business internationally. [Source: Crunchbase]

Category: B2C Solutions

Niraj Shah

Award: Leader

Name: Niraj Shah, Co-Founder & CEO

Company: Wayfair,

Niraj Shah is the co-founder and CEO of Wayfair, where he also serves as a director. He has been included in Fortune Magazine’s 40 Under 40 and has won the Ernst and Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year award. He also serves on the board of MITX, The Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce, the Cornell University Council, and the Entrepreneurship @ Cornell Advisory Council.

Wayfair is the largest online retailer of home goods in the United States. Wayfair employs over 2,300 people across those offices. In 2014, Wayfair’s sales exceeded $1.3 billion [Source: Crunchbase]

Aman Narang

Award: Rising Star

Name: Aman Narang, President & Co-Founder

Company: Toast,

Aman Narang is President and co-founder of Toast where he also currently leads innovation and business development initiatives. Prior to Toast, he worked on innovation initiatives at Endeca, now Oracle. (Source: company website)

Toast is an all-in-one restaurant technology platform that is built specifically for restaurants. Using a mobile cloud-based POS system, Toast is able to bring together all aspects of restaurant operations from online ordering, to gift card and loyalty programs to labor and sales reporting all on a mobile, cloud-based POS system. [Source: Crunchbase]

Award: Innovation & Achievement in Venture Capital

Darshana Zaveri

Name: Darshana Zaveri, Managing Partner

Company: Catalyst Health Ventures,

Darshana Zaveri is currently a Managing Partner at Catalyst Health Ventures and possesses over a decade of experience in the health care and life science industries. She led Catalyst’s investments in a number of well-known companies including Augmenix, Lantos Technologies, nVision Medical, Maxwell Health, Aria CV and Hepregen. She is currently a Director of Lantos, Aria CV, and nVision and is an observer to the boards of Augmenix and Maxwell Health. She currently serves as a Catalyst of the Deshpande Center for Technological Innovation at MIT. Catalyst Health Ventures is an early-stage venture capital firm that invests targeting technology solutions applied within the health care and life science industries. [Source: Crunchbase]

Katie Rae

Name: Katie Rae, CEO & Managing Partner

Company: The Engine,

Katie Rae is a veteran of the startup and early-stage investor worlds, both in Boston and Silicon Valley and currently the CEO and Managing Partner at The Engine. She also co-founded Project 11 Ventures, a venture fund that invests in companies in their earliest stages and helps them with building a strong team and vision. She served as Chairman and the Managing Director of Techstars Boston where she led investments in over 70+ high growth startups across many industries while simultaneously propelling Techstars into a global brand. [Source: CrunchBase]

Designed by MIT to support new companies working on scientific and technological innovation, The Engine is a first-of-its-kind organization with a mission to focus exclusively on founders working on these big problems. [Source: company website].

Category: Robotics and Automation

Award: Leader


Karl Iagnemma

, Co-Founder & President

Company: NuTonomy,

Karl Iagnemma is an authority on robotics and autonomous vehicles whose opinion and commentary has been published and broadcast worldwide on Bloomberg, CNBC, BBC, and many other media outlets. As former director of the Robotic Mobility Group at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), his research resulted in more than 150 technical publications, 50 issued or filed patents, and numerous edited volumes, including books on the DARPA Grand Challenge and Urban Challenge autonomous vehicle competitions. Karl is co-founder and President of Boston-based nuTonomy, Inc., the leading developer of autonomous vehicle software. nuTonomy was named a 2017 World Economic Forum Technology Pioneer.

Raghav Gupta

Award: Rising Star

Name: Raghav Gupta, COO

Company: Humatics,

Raghav Gupta is currently COO of Humanics. He has been in founding and leadership capacities in venture-backed tech companies for over 20 years, including Ooyala where he was GM EMEA, Videoplaza as CCO, Brightcove where he was a member of the founding team, and Live365.

Humatics’ breakthrough micro-location system and analytics software comprise a Spatial Intelligence Platform™ that will revolutionize how people and machines locate, navigate and collaborate. [Source: Crunchbase]

Venkat Maroju

Award: TiE CM Achievement Award

Name: Venkat Maroju, CEO

Company: SourceTrace Systems,

Dr. Venkat Maroju is currently the CEO of SourceTrace Systems. He has been able to further the mission of SourceTrace Systems through his extensive experience with technological leadership with extensive grassroots-level experience with social enterprises such as microfinance institutions, farmers’ cooperatives, sustainable agriculture, rural supply chain, and renewable energy.

SourceTrace Systems is a company that has become a global leader in providing software solutions to the agriculture and allied sectors. [Source: company website]

Malay Kundu

Name: Malay Kundu, Founder & CEO

Company: StopLift,

Malay Kundu is the Founder & CEO of StopLift Checkout Vision Systems, the leading developer of cloud-based AI machine vision technology which automatically analyzes regular security video to detect various forms of theft, training error, and operational analytics at the checkout.

StopLift is best known for having developed the first ever checkout vision system capable of detecting scan-avoidance and “sweethearting” collusion between cashiers and customers.

Ravi Ika

Name: Ravi Ika, Founder, CEO & President

Company: RxAdvance,

Ravi Ika is a noted entrepreneur and an innovator of disruptive business solutions. He founded RxAdvance in 2013 and serves as the President & CEO. He launched RxAdvance to lower pharmacy, specialty and avoidable drug-impacted medical costs and achieve better outcomes, quality and compliance in the new era of value-based health care.

RxAdvance, a national full service PBM, leverages disruptive Collaborative PBM Cloud™ to manage standard & specialty drug benefits. [Source: Crunchbase]

Ram Krishnan

Name: Ram Krishnan, Co-Founder

Company: VidScale,

Ram Krishnan was the Co-Founder, VP of Strategy & Business Development at VidScale. In March 2018, VidScale was acquired by Ericsson and is part of a new unit called EdgeGravityTM, by Ericsson.

VidScale is a pioneer in the edge-to-edge application and content deployment space. VidScale, in partnership with the world’s mobile and landline service providers, has integrated its cache and compute technologies into privileged operator edges across the world, unifying them on a single platform that are exposed to content owners, platform providers, and application developers.