CEI Executive Director Jeff Saville Departs Phoenix Incubator after Storied Tenure
The Center for Entrepreneurial Innovation (CEI) announced the resignation of Executive Director Jeff Saville, effective March 23. He will assume the role of Marketing Director at Valutek, a Phoenix-based company that specializes in the manufacturing and sales of clean room consumables.
CEI’s entrepreneur-in-residence and former GoDaddy director Nate Curran will fill the role on an interim basis while a national search is conducted, according to Susie Pulido, Vice President of the Maricopa Corporate College. CEI is a division of the Maricopa Corporate College.
“We had a vision 10 years ago of creating an incubator that supported the growing technology sector in Phoenix, and Jeff brought his inspiring leadership and innovative spirit toward making CEI relevant to the entrepreneurs we serve,” Pulido said.
“As we begin the search for his full-time replacement, our goal is to maintain program continuity for our client companies and expand upon the success and reputation that we have garnered throughout the community,” she added.
Saville departs after more than three years at the Phoenix incubator, during which he helped architect one of the most revered incubation programs in the southwest region. CEI offers its own unique blend of support services as well as technical infrastructure and space to innovative companies in the medical device, bioscience, software-as-a-service and clean tech industries.
He played a critical role in establishing a partnership with Phoenix Analysis and Design Technologies (PADT) that created StartUpLabs, an onsite 3D printing and design shop for CEI client and community entrepreneurs. More recently, he pioneered the incubator’s competitive intelligence lab, which provides sophisticated research to CEI companies in the areas of market and customer validation, industry trends and developments, and competitor activity.
During Saville’s tenure, CEI companies have created more than 160 jobs to date at an average salary of $56,000. They have collectively earned more than $30 million in total revenues and $11 million in capital investment and grants. More specifically, he helped facilitate some high-profile incubator successes. In October, CEI graduate VisionGate - whose innovations aid in the early detection of lung cancer - opened its new CLIA laboratory and headquarters in Phoenix and later announced the acquisition of the rights to the lung cancer prevention drug Iloprost. Arbsource, which created a solution for more effective wastewater treatment and was also an early client of the incubator, recently sold to New York City firm MicrOrganic Inc. in a potentially 7-figure deal.
Saville was previously the Vice President of Flagstaff-based incubator NACET and also has extensive marketing experience in the private sector, including several of his own business ventures.
Now Curran will step into the executive director role, and he will strive to sustain the impressive level of service to CEI members.
“Jeff has been the heart and soul of CEI for the last three years, making him incredibly hard to replace,” Curran said. “I look forward to continuing the work of Jeff and the amazing CEI team in being an advocate for some of the region’s best and brightest technology entrepreneurs.”
A division of the Maricopa Corporate College, the Center for Entrepreneurial Innovation is a community-based business incubator located in the heart of Discovery Triangle. With funding from the US Economic Development Administration, City of Phoenix and Maricopa County Community College District, CEI provides targeted business services and proactive business support to create a systematic link between technology development, compelling markets and opportunities; entrepreneurial and managerial talent development; early stage capital sourcing; and education and training, interns, coaching and business counseling from Maricopa Small Business Development Center (SBDC) analysts and other leading industry specialists. For more about CEI, visit www.ceigateway.com.