Strategic Advisors

Business Advisors

Brian J. Baum – Founder, CEO

Email Brian J. Baum

Brian Baum has focused his career on engaging consumers in healthcare.  His philosophy is that “change in healthcare” will hinge on the active engagement and participation of individual consumers in proactively managing their health.  He believes that the burden falls to industry to develop information, tools and services to allow the health consumer to effectively manage their health.

Baum launched a vitaTrackr, Inc., in August, 2011 to facilitate the flow of health data across the healthcare industry.

In previous positions, Baum served as President of Stayhealthy, Inc., a company focused on bringing technology and innovation to individuals interested in taking control of their health.  Baum was the founding President and Chief Operating Officer of U.S. Preventive Medicine, (USPM).  His initial interest in healthcare and the role of the consumer was sparked in his work with Duke University, where he was the co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of the Health Record Network, (HRN). HRN was initially founded as a collaborative effort between the Duke University Medical Center and the Duke Fuqua School of Business.  HRN was established as an independent not for profit organization with a mission of creating consumer interest and demand for electronic health information records.  At the time of the founding of HRN, the concept of engaging consumers in the push for automated health information was a novel concept.

Baum has extensive experience in developing and launching innovative, technology based products and services. He directed the service development and launch of Ernie® — the first major effort by a global consulting/accounting firm to embrace the Internet to distribute consulting services to fast-growing, entrepreneurial companies through a subscription-based service. The launch of Ernie won Ernst & Young numerous awards and was inducted into the Smithsonian Institute’s permanent archive for innovations in technology.

Baum has been a frequent guest of CNN and CNBC business programs. He also served as a guest lecturer at the Entrepreneur of the Year® Institute and has served on the Board of Advisors for the Information Technology Services Marketing Organization, (ITSMA), and the Duke University, Fuqua School of Business’s Health Sector Advisory Council.

Baum holds a BS degree in marketing from the University of Baltimore and has attended the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton Executive Education Program. He is also currently a Senior Scholar at Jefferson Medical College.


Jarett Rodriguez – COO

Jarett Rodriguez is the Chief Operating Officer of vitaTrackr and has a long history in the entrepreneurial ecosystem, both as an advisor and a founder.  He was recently named one of the “Two People to Watch on Austin’s Tech Scene” by the Austin Business Journal and was referred to as “A driving force for change” by then President Obama.

Rodriguez has founded or co-founded numerous companies across several industries.  He has spent most of his career in various technology and operations roles.

Most recently, Rodriguez served as the President and Chief Innovation Officer of 5x LSU 100 Honoree Bizzuka, Inc. of Lafayette, LA.  At Bizzuka he lead the team that developed Bizzuka’s first mobile application and its first SaaS offering.  He also spread agile methodologies and lean methodologies throughout the organization.

Prior to Bizzuka, Rodriguez served as the Associate Director for the Stephenson Entrepreneurship Institute at LSU.  The SEI was a new institute funded completely through donations and revenues earned.  He served as a liaison building bridges between the SEI & the business community and was responsible for identifying market opportunities and building revenue producing programs and donor opportunities for the university.

Additionally, Rodriguez taught innovation and creativity classes at LSU through the Ruck's Department of Management. He created and served as Director of the Entrepreneurship Fellows Program and the LSU 100.  He was also a member of the Executive Education Faculty at LSU where he taught and mentored business leaders from Fortune 500 companies and company founders from mid-size businesses on strategy, innovation, and entrepreneurship. He has also taught academic courses in the College of Nursing at Southeastern Louisiana University and the College of Health and Pharmaceutical Sciences at University of Louisiana at Monroe.

Dedicated to lifelong learning, Rodriguez earned an Executive MBA through the LSU Flores MBA Program and a Master of Education with emphasis in cardiovascular physiology from the University of Louisiana at Monroe. His undergraduate degree, which he earned from Louisiana Tech, is in Business Management and Entrepreneurship.  He has undergone training in human centered design, leadership, innovation, project management, economic development and various technologies.

Rodriguez serves on the board of directors for a privately held firm in Texas, the advisory board of a privately held firm in Michigan, and the advisory board for several SMBs in Louisiana. Rodriguez is also a graduate of Leadership Louisiana.


Mark A. Calem – CTO

Mr. Calem has more than 30 years of experience managing, developing and implementing large-scale, mission critical information systems for healthcare IT and public sector organizations – both back-end and consumer facing.  He has significant consulting experience with a focus in the areas of system architecture development, systems development methodologies,
and the complete systems development lifecycle.   Most recently, Mr. Calem was the program manager for the Federally-Facilitated Marketplace – a key component of President Obama’s signature healthcare legislation – the Affordable Care Act.   Previously, Mr. Calem has served as the Chief Technology Officer for a number of consulting and commercial organizations including AMS and U.S. Preventive Medicine.

Mr. Calem lives in the Northern Virginia area, is married and has three children. He enjoys swimming, biking, and running.  He grew up in San Juan, Puerto Rico.


Drs. David S. Ellis and H. Pat Hezmall
Chief Medical Officers

Dr’s. Ellis and Hezmall are both native Texans, did their post graduate training in Houston at the University of Texas Health Science Center and the M D Anderson Cancer Hospital, and were founding partners and long standing Executive Board members of Urology Associates of North Texas and USMD, Inc, a publically traded healthcare company, which manages physician ancillary business entities-cancer centers, physician-owned hospitals, and medical device partnerships. They were also instrumental in founding a large, integrated Urology research network called LURN (Linked Urology Research Network), USMD Hospital in 2003, and also LUGPA (Large Urology Group Practice Association).  After resigning from UANT in 2010, they were employed by a well known healthcare entrepreneur in Los Angeles, returning to the Dallas/Ft Worth area in 2011 to form Blue Moon Strategies, a healthcare consulting company.

Dr Hezmall, while in practice, managed the daily operations of UANT as a member of the Executive Committee-a 54 man/woman single specialty Urology practice with 21 offices across the DFW Metroplex. His clinical interests were in research, where he was involved in 25 clinical trials spanning: medications, tissue injectables, and minimally-invasive urological procedures. He was the Chairman of Board of UROPATH LL  from inception (2003) to sale (2008). Prior to its sale, UROPATH was a 52 urology group laboratory business performing anatomic GU pathology. He was very active in organized medicine, serving as secretary/treasurer, vice president and president elect of the Tarrant County Medical Association.  He also serves the Texas Medical Association as a delegate, committee member, and Socio-Economic Council member, meeting with Texas insurers and medical directors. He was the District Chairman for the TMA Political Action Committee, and has close ties to all levels of Texas government, along with a close relationship with Rep. Joe Barton on a federal level.

Dr Ellis, while in practice, was the Head of Development and Marketing, growing UANT from 3 physicians and 2 offices (1993) to a 54 physician group,with 21 offices by 2005, with multiple Centers of Excellence.  His clinical interest was prostate cancer, and he helped pioneer the technique of Prostate Cryoablation. By 2010, he had performed more cryoablation procedures for prostate cancer than any US physician. He developed a grid based system for Endocare that helped make the procedure more accommodating, trained a majority of the physicians performing the procedure today, and in 2009, helped write the Guidelines for Prostate Cryoablation for the AUA (American Urology Association).  He published 7 articles on the procedure, lectured extensively, and led the charge in the areas of focal ablation and post treatment sexual recovery.


William Jews

Bill Jews is the former Chairman and CEO of Carefirst BlueCross BlueShield, a leading mid-Atlantic health care company. He also served as president and chief executive officer of two operating affiliates, CareFirst of Maryland, Inc. and Group Hospitalization and Medical Services, Inc. in Washington, D.C., and was chief executive officer of a third affiliate, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Delaware.

Bill was named president and chief executive officer of the former Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Maryland in April 1993, at a time when the company faced severe financial and operational difficulties. Bill established new corporate strategic positioning, including synergistic acquisitions and mergers to form Carefirst, Inc, a not-for-profit holding company that included the BlueCross Plans of Maryland, the National Capital Area and Delaware.

During his tenure, Carefirst grew to seventh ranked Plan among the Blue Cross Blue Shield Plans with more than $5 billion in annual revenues, nearly three million customers, and the nation's largest federal employee health benefit program. With more than 6,000 associates in five states and the District of Columbia, a CareFirst company won the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association's Brand excellence Award for nine consecutive years.

Bill currently also serves on the board of directors of Choice Hotels International, KCI Technologies, Fortress International Group, and is an advisor to Camden Investments and Sterling Venture Partners.


Julie Klapstein

Julie Klapstein was the founding CEO of Availity, the industry leader in optimizing the automated delivery of critical business and clinical information among healthcare stakeholders. Klapstein was the CEO and board member of Availity for 11 years.  Since its inception in 2001, Availity has become one of the largest health care information exchanges in the country and has won more than a dozen industry awards for its health information network.

Availity dramatically expanded its footprint under Klapstein’s leadership. In addition to substantial organic growth, the company acquired The Health Information Network (THIN) in 2006 and RealMed in 2010. The combined enterprise now delivers advanced health information solutions to a nationally growing network that currently includes more than 350,000 physicians and providers of care, 2,700 hospitals, 1,400 health plans and 500 industry partners.

Klapstein’s 30+ years of experience in the health care information technology industry include executive roles at Phycom, Inc. as CEO, Sunquest Information Systems (EVP); SMS’ Turnkey Systems Division (now Siemens Medical Systems) and GTE Health Systems.

She currently serves on the board of directors for Standard Register (SR - document and marketing services), Annie’s Homegrown, Inc. (BNNY - organic and natural foods), Dominion Diagnostics (laboratory services), Akal (private government contractor for security services) and serves on the advisory board of Riverside Partners and Operating Council at Solera Capital. She has been active with United Way and on the boards of Jacksonville Humane Society and NE Florida Lyme Association.

Klapstein earned her bachelor’s degree from Portland State University in Portland, Oregon. She is the recipient of multiple awards for top business leaders in Florida. She resides in Tucson, Arizona.

*Availity is a joint venture between Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Florida, Inc., Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota, Inc., Health Care Service Corporation (HCSC), Humana Inc., and WellPoint, Inc.


Dr. Tausha Robertson

For the past 10 years, Dr. Tausha Robertson has worked in Private Equity driving increased fund valuations by reducing operational costs, with a special focus on healthcare expenditures.  Working for financier Carl Icahn, Tausha streamlined the healthcare spend and implemented targeted analytics to inform consumerism strategies which resulted in millions of dollars in savings, improving EBITDA for the operating companies.   After leaving Icahn Enterprises, Tausha and business partners built a successful consulting firm, Alterity, which counts top tier private equity firms as clients.  She has executed on a multi-year strategy that has driven greater than $50MM in savings for one private equity firm.  In addition, Tausha has lead complicated benefits spin offs and integrations involving Fortune 100 companies and other large multinational firms.  Alterity was acquired by NFP in 2012 and continues to prosper. Her experience and track record of success have made her a highly regarded consultant and thought leader.

Tausha relocated to Austin, Texas with the acquisition of Alterity where she developed a passion for technology. As a first time mobile app developer, she garnered recognition by MVMT50 as a Top 10 Innovator at SXSW and has received numerous awards including Austinprenuer of the Year.  Her mobile app, Primpii, has been featured in national press.  Tausha’s recent engagement in the tech world has been recognized by her appointment to the Advisory Board for SXSW.  She plans to combine her years of business and healthcare experience with her tech interest to drive innovation in healthcare.

Tausha holds a Doctorate in Health Policy and Administration from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill along with a BS and MS from the University of Arizona.  She is a published author and sought after speaker.  In addition to professional pursuits, Tausha lends her talents to numerous community organizations.  She raised over $45,000 for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society as a Woman of the Year candidate, serves on the Board of Directors for Saint Louise House and is an active member of Delta Sigma Theta.


Dr. John J. Rush

 Dr. Rush is residency trained and board certified by the American Board of Emergency Medicine.  He also completed Physician Training & Certification in Age Management Medicine, jointly sponsored by The Cenegenics Education and Research Foundation (CERF) and the Foundation for Care Management (FCM).

Dr. Rush attained a B.S. in integrated life sciences from Kent State University (Kent, Ohio), and then earned his medical degree from Northeastern Ohio Universities College of Medicine (Rootstown, Ohio). He went on to complete an emergency medicine internship and residency at Loma Linda University (Loma Linda, California). Ten years later, he graduated from Pfeiffer University (Charlotte, North Carolina), completing an executive MBA/MHA program.

His medical executive positions have included Chief Financial Officer at Wake Emergency Physicians, Vice President of Medical Affairs at Coastal Physician Services (NYSE: DR), Medical Director at CIGNA Healthcare (NYSE: CI), Vice President of Health Services at PacificCare Health Systems (NYSE: PHS), and Chief Medical Officer at Hanger Orthopedic Group, Inc. (NYSE: HGR).  Dr. Rush created the Government Relations department and established the Hanger Federally Connected PAC.  The Hanger PAC raised more money in its first year of existence than the entire Orthotic & Prosthetic industry combined.  Dr. Rush's lobbying efforts and testimony at both the State and Federal levels lead to the passage of the Prosthetic Parity Act in 17 states.  A federal bill is pending.  Most recently, Dr. Rush opened the Cenegenics Medical Institute of Washington, D.C. where he is the CEO.  Dr. Rush has a passion for medical paradigms that create superior patient care and offer the best hope for optimized health. He lectures and uses social media extensively to extol the virtues of health and wellness; he practices what he preaches.

Over the years, Dr. Rush has sat on numerous medical leadership and quality committees and has delivered lectures in the fields of Emergency Medicine, Health Care Quality, Health Care Finance, and Health & Wellness. He is published in the Annals of Emergency Medicine and holds a U.S. Patent for a medical device. In addition, he has dedicated time to public service and was a member of the Board of Directors for the Lied Discovery Children’s Museum (Las Vegas, Nevada) and Board for Orthotist/Prosthestist Certification (Columbia, Maryland).  He and his wife, Carla, have four children and live in Potomac, Maryland.  They are members of the Journey's Crossing Church in Germantown, Maryland.  Dr. Rush is an Eagle Scout and is an assistant Scout Master in Boy Scout Troop 1449 where he teaches leadership and outdoor skills. Dr. Rush and his family are proud to support the VFW and the Purple Heart Foundation.


Carl J. Sardegna

Carl John Sardegna most recently started Green Crescent Insurance company in Abu Dhabi, UAE in 2007 where he served as CEO until 2011. Green Crescent is a health insurance company and is thought to be the only pure private health insurance company operating in the Middle East. Prior to that time, Carl served as the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the Maryland Blue Cross / Blue Shield  Plan and through acquisitions and internal growth created the largest HMO in the state of Maryland. As part of this managed care program, Carl created two subsidiaries, Greenspring and Paradigm. He served as Vice Chairman of the Board of Future Health, a disease management company which was sold to Nationwide Insurance. Carl served as Executive Vice President of UNUM, the country’s largest provider of long term disability care. He was part of its initial billion-dollar public offering changing from Union Mutual (a mutual insurance company) to a public stockholder company. He also was Vice President of New York Life Insurance in charge of their Equity portfolio.

Carl received a Bachelor of Arts from St. Francis College of Brooklyn New York and a Masters Degree in Economics from Bernard Baruch University – City College of New York.


Dr. Kenneth I. Shine

Dr. Kenneth Shine most recently served as Special Advisor to the Chancellor at the University of Texas System and helped oversee the development of a new medical school in South Texas as well as the Dell Medical School in Austin. He previously served as Executive Vice Chancellor for Health Affairs. In that capacity he was responsible for the six U.T. System health initiatives and their aggregate operating budget of almost $8.4 billion. Dr. Shine also served as interim Chancellor from May 1 through Dec. 18, 2008 and in various capacities since 2003.

Before joining the University of Texas System, Dr. Shine was President of the Institute of Medicine (IOM). Under Dr. Shine's leadership from 1992 until 2002, IOM researchers led studies on nutrition, food safety and child development and examined availability and side effects of vaccines. Dr. Shine also organized symposia to underscore the importance of cultural sensitivity in health care and supported programs to increase immunization rates, decrease use of tobacco among adolescents and improve care of the dying.

As founding Director of the RAND Center for Domestic and International Health Security, Dr. Shine led the Center's efforts to make health a central component of U.S. foreign policy. He also guided the Center's evolving research agenda, applying his decades of experience in working with international health experts on global issues such as emerging infectious illnesses, bioethics, and access to care.

Dr. Shine serves as Professor of Medicine Emeritus at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) School of Medicine. A cardiologist and physiologist, he received his M.D. from Harvard Medical School in 1961. Before becoming president of the IOM, he was Dean and Provost for Medical Sciences at UCLA.

Additionally, Dr. Shine is a member of many honorary and academic societies, including Phi Beta Kappa and Alpha Omega Alpha, Fellow of the American College of Cardiology, Master of the American College of Physicians, and was elected to the Institute of Medicine in 1988. He served as Chairman of the Council of Deans of the Association of American Medical Colleges from 1991-1992, and was President of the American Heart Association from 1985-1986.





Jeff Hahn – Hahn Public

Jeff Hahn is the owner and principal of Hahn Public. Jeff focuses on brand crafting, message development and crisis communications for the firm’s clients; he also leads the health systems practice area. He is a 26-year public relations practitioner.

Prior to joining the firm, Jeff was communications director at Freescale Semiconductor and public affairs director at Motorola Semiconductor. For those companies, as well as with Motorola’s corporate office in Schaumburg, Illinois, and Lockheed Space Operations in Titusville, Florida, he served in roles including government relations, media relations, crisis communication, analyst relations, business operations, employee communication, financial communication and executive communication.

Jeff serves on the Board of Advisors for the School of Communication Studies at Texas State University. He serves as a volunteer for the Austin Chamber of Commerce, and is a past Membership Committee Chair; he was also the Austin city campaign co-chair for the United Way campaign in 2010. Jeff has served on a number of nonprofit boards in the past including the World Congress on Information Technology, and he was Board Chair for LifeWorks in 2003 and for Keep Austin Beautiful in 1998 and 1999. He is also a 2002 graduate of Leadership Austin.

Jeff grew up on a farm in Iowa and moved to Texas in 1984 by enlisting in the United States Air Force. He served at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio where he completed an associate degree in administration, then graduated with a bachelor’s degree in political science in 1990 from The University of Texas at San Antonio. He is formally trained in persuasion communication and holds a master’s degree in communication studies at Texas State University.




Theo Fels – Theo and Sebastian

Influenced by a strange brew of 1880s broadsheets, the L.A. art scene, and a passion for editorial design, Theo Fels designs media and web sites for prominent news, corporate and media/entertainment clients.

A seasoned news designer, Theo directed the print and online redesigns of the Hollywood Reporter and the online redesign of Singapore Today.

His most current work includes ongoing internal and external websites for American Express, the redesign of the International Monetary Fund website,, and the Irish Independent and the Belfast Telegraph news sites.

In addition to American Express and International Monetary Fund, his corporate clients include, IBM and Prometheus Global Media.

His work has been widely recognized by the design industry’s elite publications and organizations including Print, How, Communication Arts, Graphis, ARC, and the Society of Publication Designers.



Sebastian Kaupert – Theo and Sebastian

Sebastian Kaupert designs across media and practices, with a focus on branding and business.

He has developed identities, brand strategies, editorial design, online advertising, corporate sites, application interfaces, and intranets for brands like American Express, BMW, Condé Nast, Evian, IBM, MasterCard, MSNBC, Nickelodeon, Novartis, Pfizer, Simon & Schuster, Verizon, Viacom, Volvo, and UPS.

Sebastian served on the board of AIGA’s New York Chapter, and has been teaching communication designers at Pratt Institute for over 15 years, including classes on social media and business practice. He also conducts an annual social media workshop at NABA in Milan, Italy. He received an MA in Graphic Design from the Pforzheim School of Design in Germany, with Marketing Communication Credits from the Pforzheim School of Business. In 2003, he completed an Executive Program, Business for Design Leaders, at Harvard Business School.






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