About the Judges 

The judges for the TechCelerator Final Presentations and Awards Ceremony are entrepreneurs and experts in our local community. They volunteer their time to attend the event and evaluate the teams’ business plans. Keep reading to learn about each judge’s expertise and why they volunteer their time.

Brad Swope is a Senior Technology Licensing Officer in Penn State’s Office of Technology Management, where he manages the assessment, patenting and licensing of a diverse portfolio of Penn State inventions.  

Swope processes about 20-30 new Penn State inventions per year with a primary focus in the engineering and information sciences.  

Prior his current role, Swope founded his own start-up business, Zennovations, which provided consulting services to universities and other clients on intellectual property protection and new technology evaluation and commercialization.   

He also served as a New Products Manager for Mixing and Mass Transfer Technologies, where he was responsible for developing new product opportunities for the company.  Brad is also a Registered Patent Agent and received his B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Penn State and his MBA from the University of Maryland.  In his spare time, Swope is an avid mountain biker and outdoor enthusiast.

Tim Hurley is President of DIApedia, a company developing medical systems aimed to provide improved footwear solutions for targeted communities. DIApedia’s primary mission is to deploy its TrueContour® insole design system to improve the health of people suffering with diabetic peripheral neuropathy. 

Additionally, the company works with the army to design improved footwear solutions for soldiers to reduce injuries. Prior to his work at DIApedia, Hurley has co-founded and managed a series of successful start-up businesses, including Chiral Quest and PennTurf Products, which had profitable exits. 

Hurley received his B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Penn State. When not working, he’s busy as a youth coach in whatever sport is in season. 

When asked why he chose to volunteer as a judge, Tim Hurley said, “Well, as a person who’s been working in start-up companies, it’s always exciting to learn about new technologies and to meet people just beginning their entrepreneurial careers.”

Hurley feels he can be a resource to these graduating teams. “I have a lot of experience in the technology commercialization area, and they’ll need people to help execute their plans,” he said. “That’s the part I enjoy the most.”

Paul Sciabica is Managing Partner at Augmen Advisors, a consultancy to early stage and middle market companies where he leverages his broad background on all facets of business operations: fund raising, product development, sales/marketing, strategic direction, leadership development and M&A.

Previously he was the Executive Director of the New York Angels, a consortium of early stage investors focusing on technology, media and services companies. During his tenure at the NYA, he was involved in over 60 financings.

Prior to joining the NYA, Sciabica was an investment banker at Merrill Lynch where he managed a $100 million venture fund and was responsible for 50+ investments. His board seat duties included enterprise software, fabless semiconductors, Internet and telecommunications equipment companies. Global investing included companies in Japan, China, Sweden and Israel. The Fund had an IRR of 250%.

He has been a technologist/strategic planner for The Washington Post, The National Association of Securities Dealers and The Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve Bank.

Sciabica holds a BA in Economics from Bloomsburg University.

When asked why he volunteered as a judge, Sciabica said, “It’s a great way to give back to the community and to learn about interesting opportunities for investment.”