Mr. Huffstutter’s areas expertise include innovation management, entrepreneurship, growth strategies and financing for startups. He has helped launch several companies and advised countless others. Mr. Huffstutter works with startup companies that are based on technology developed at the University of Michigan through their Office of Technology Transfer where he is also responsible for student entrepreneurship, entrepreneurial ecosystem development activities, and their startup talent and mentoring program called the Catalyst Resource Network. Prior to this role he was a member of the Business Formation team actively helping entrepreneurs and faculty start companies based on University of Michigan intellectual property.
Wesley is active in the local angel investing community working with the Ann Arbor Angels and founding the Wolverine Angel Network (a network of U-M angel investors.) He sits on the business accelerator advisory board for Ann Arbor SPARK, the local entrepreneurship and economic development engine in the Ann Arbor Area and serves as a “Drill Instructor” for their Entrepreneur’s Boot Camp. Wesley serves as a mentor and guest lecturer to the Center for Entrepreneurship (U-M College of Engineering) and the Zell-Lurie Institute for Entrepreneurial Studies (at U-M’s Ross School of Business.) Wes has also taught an MBA course at the Barcelona Management Institute (Business Analysis and Decision Making - which melds management science and game theory.) He is active in creating a local entrepreneurial environment as a founding board member of BioArbor, an regional life science entrepreneurial networking forum and Ann Arbor New Tech meetup (a2newtech), a technology entrepreneurship group that holds demo events for regional technology startups. Additionally, Wesley serves as a coach/mentor for the Great Lakes Entrepreneur’s Quest and other organizations.
Before moving to Michigan, Wesley was an independent consultant in St. Louis, MO and Columbus, OH, primarily focusing on startups and small growth companies needing assistance with strategy, marketing, and operations. He has also performed due diligence for investors and analyzed academic programs for college deans at a Research I institution. Prior to consulting, he spent several years in Austin, TX as an early employee of Intelligent Reasoning Systems, Inc. (IRSI). IRSI was a venture-backed machine vision company that inspected printed wire assemblies (assembled circuit boards) and high density interconnects (IC package carriers and substrates) in real-time, required no programming, and used artificial intelligence to learn and understand process variation. Wes joined IRSI as a software researcher before transitioning to applications engineering and finally directing the company’s marketing. IRSI was acquired by Photon Dynamics [NASDAQ:PHTN].
Wesley has a Bachelor’s degree in computer science from DePauw University. He is also a graduate of Washington University in St. Louis where he received a Master of Engineering Management from the School of Engineering and Applied Science and an MBA from the Olin Business School where he was designated a Charles F. Knight Scholar, graduating in the top 10 in his class. Wesley holds a U.S. Patent on software design and has published an article on cost reduction and process improvement in the journal “Circuits Assembly”.