About Us

Improving Lives through Innovation & Entrepreneurship

Startup Junkie

Through united efforts, the Startup Junkie team is improving lives through innovation and entrepreneurship. Startup Junkie Consulting marked its beginnings in 2008 and formally organized as an LLC in 2011 by offering consulting services at no-cost to entrepreneurs. In order to expand the reach, impact, and depth of services, Startup Junkie Foundation was born in 2015. As two companies sharing the same purpose, mission, vision, and values, the team is jointly building entrepreneurial ecosystems in Northwest Arkansas through providing no-cost, one-on-one consulting; events, workshops, and programs; and access to capital and talent. Extending outside of the Ozarks region, Startup Junkie Consulting is also boosting emerging entrepreneurial communities spanning from Canada to South America.

Conductor

The Conductor is a public-private partnership between the University of Central Arkansas and Startup Junkie Consulting, the Conductor drives innovation, entrepreneurship, and economic empowerment in Central Arkansas. Learn more about their services and impact here.

Meet the Team

Haley Allgood - Executive Director

Haley Allgood

Executive Director

As Executive Director of Startup Junkie Foundation, Haley Allgood leads programs focused on entrepreneurial education, inclusive ecosystem development, and workforce training. She has been a key member of the NWA startup community,  providing assistance to startups and small businesses in Northwest Arkansas since 2014. Her expertise lies in contract management, enterprise sales, and operations. Haley holds a Master’s in Business Administration with a focus in Entrepreneurship and Innovation from the Sam M. Walton College of Business and a Bachelor’s of Science in Chemical Engineering from the University of Arkansas. Haley was recognized in the 2017 cohort of “The New Influentials: 20 in Their 20’s” by Arkansas Business and was awarded the 2016 Women Small Business Champion of the Year by the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Arkansas District Office for her work leading inclusive programs such as the Ozarks Regional InnovateHER competition, the 2.7.0. Accelerator, and ScaleUp Ozarks.

Michael Iseman

Swiss Army Knife

Michael is a proven leader with Fortune 500, non-profit, and new venture experience. Most recently, Michael held leadership roles at Cerner (NASDAQ: CERN) where he led a diverse team of engineers through complex IT and IP-intensive projects. In addition to this, Michael co-founded and helped launch BioBotic Solutions. BioBotic Solutions is a venture that is based on university IP that reduces pathology lab process time and costs while improving accuracy. Michael began his career as an Associate at the nationally-recognized CEO Forums. Under the leadership of Tim McFarland, Michael helped expand the quality and the reach of the CEO Forums based in Northwest Arkansas. He is a graduate of the University of Arkansas Sam M. Walton College of Business with a Bachelor’s degree in Finance and a focus on entrepreneurship.

Michael Iseman - Swiss Army Knife
Megan Frohardt - Executive Consultant

Megan Frohardt

Executive Consultant

Megan has always had a passion for sustainable, long-term community development, especially through cross-sector collaboration. This fueled the harmonious combination of her education, involvement, and professional experience to support the pursuit of this passion. Her previous roles include providing supplemental instruction for collegiate data analytics classes, governmental reporting under the financial controller in Bartlesville, Oklahoma for a Fortune 100 company, auditing both publicly traded and privately held companies in NWA, and financial consulting for economic development projects in Mozambique. Megan is a graduate of the Walton College Graduate School of Business where she received both her Master’s of Accountancy and her M.B.A. With her background in accounting, data analytics, and community development projects, she works with startups to build financial proformas, create budgets, determine strategic price setting, and provide general accounting and operation management support.

Ellen Brune, Ph.D.

Senior Entrepreneur in Residence

As the Senior Entrepreneur in Residence, Ellen’s focus is growing the entrepreneurial ecosystem for science based startups and craft food and beverage ventures. Ellen has a PhD in Chemical Engineering and is the Founder of Boston Mountain Biotech (www.mtnbio.com) in Fayetteville, Arkansas. In her role as a mentor to the startup community, Ellen has provided support in the areas of business development and strategy, research validation, commercialization studies, and patent strategy. To support youth development, Ellen is a coach with the Arkansas State Interscholastic Cycling Association and the Little Bella’s program which helps build character and confidence through mountain biking.

Ellen Brune - Senior Entrepreneur
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Jeff Charlson

Senior Entrepreneur in Residence

Jeff is the lead partner of Bike Rack Brewing Co., which just expanded to a 2nd location, and uses his strong background in business & technology to champion the start-up environment in NW Arkansas. As Senior Entrepreneur in Residence for CVF, he is tasked with connecting startups to the large corporations in NWA and with providing mentorship, consulting, and technical assistance. Jeff serves as an executive board member of the greater Bentonville Chamber of Commerce. Jeff also has a wealth of corporate experience with a successful 25 year Fortune 500 career. He is the CTO of Rockfish, a digital marketing and advertising agency. Jeff was a global corporate officer for 8 years at Walmart leading enterprise IT efforts and technology for Sam’s Club. Prior to a 12 year career at Walmart, Jeff spent 9 years at General Electric leading business teams and 6 Sigma efforts within GE and 4 years as a sales leader within the Maytag Company. Jeff graduated with an M.B.A. from Lamar University in Beaumont, TX and has a B.A. from the University of Northern Iowa.

Building an Entrepreneurial Ecosystem

OUR FUNDING PARTNERS

We are grateful for the Walton Family Foundation, the EDA, the SBA, the City of Fayetteville, and other organizations that support our vision of improving lives through entrepreneurship. The positive impact of an inclusive, vibrant, and supportive entrepreneurial ecosystem on communities is paramount. The ongoing financial support from our partnerships allows us to serve entrepreneurs cost-free!

OUR COMMUNITY PARTNERS

Collaboration is the key to building a successful entrepreneurial ecosystem.  Our partners range from the Arkansas Research Alliance to Walmart Technology and the University of Arkansas. Our community and services are stronger together to better support entrepreneurs!