Steve Poland

Steve Poland, Chairman

Steve joined Prime Photonics in 2009 as CEO and President. From 2005-2009 Steve served in various roles with Baker Hughes ProductionQuest including Director of Optical Systems, North America Sales & Operations Manager and Director of Mergers and Acquisitions. Before Baker Hughes, Steve served as VP of Commercial Projects for Luna Innovations as well as VP of Engineering & Technology for Luna Energy, where he led the development and commercialization of multiple fiber optic product lines. Steve has been a member of the Roanoke-Blacksburg Technology Council CEO Roundtable since 2014, served from 2010-2018 on the Virginia Tech Bradley Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering Advisory Board, is a FIRST LEGO League volunteer, holds 4 US patents, and has over 30 publications. Steve received B.S. and M.S. degrees in Electrical Engineering from Virginia Tech.

Russ May

Dr. Russ May

As a founder, Dr. May has served on the Board since it was created in 2002. Dr. May has over 25 years experience in fiber optic sensor and communications technology development for military and commercial applications. His background includes employment at ITT, Martin Marietta, and ADC Telecommunications, and he was an original co-founder of Fiber & Sensor Technologies (now Luna Innovations). Dr. May is a founder of Prime Photonics, and previously was research faculty at Virginia Tech's Center for Photonics Technology. He received B.S. and M.S. degrees in electrical engineering and a Ph.D. in materials engineering, all from Virginia Tech.

 Etienne Samson

Etienne Samson

Mr. Samson joined the Prime Board of Managers in 2013 and is General Manager of both Halliburton’s Applied Photonics Center and Telemetry Center of Excellence. In this role, Mr. Samson is responsible for building and leading world class, discipline oriented, research organizations with focus on developing innovative step change solutions for the Oil & Gas industry. Previously, Mr. Samson worked at Pinnacle Technologies since 2000 where held various positions in R&D. He received a B.S. in aeronautic engineering from the Montreal Polytechnic in Canada.

Mike ONeill
Mike O'Neill

Mr. O'Neill joined the Prime Board of Managers in 2010. He is the CEO of MedicaSoft, a healthcare IT company located in northern Virginia. Prior to joining MedicaSoft, he was a Senior Advisor with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, where he was a member of the founding team of the VA Center for Innovation. Mike led the introduction of new technology in healthcare and claims processing and spearheaded VA's open source electronic health records initiative and served on the board of directors of OSEHRA, the first open source foundation in healthcare IT. Prior to VA, Mike was involved in the commercialization of new products and technology as an executive in both startups and large companies and as an early stage venture capital investor. He has a B.S. and M.S. in Electrical Engineering from Virginia Tech and currently serves on the Technology Advisory Board of Henry Schein.

Dr. Dan Sable
Dr. Dan Sable

Dan is the founder and CEO of VPT, Inc. He earned an S.B. degree in Electrical Engineering from MIT and an M.S. and Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from Virginia Tech. He started his career with RCA Astro-Electronics in 1978, designing electronic circuits and systems for satellites. In 1993, he co-founded VPT and has grown VPT to be the world’s leading supplier of advanced DC-DC power converters for military, commercial aerospace, and space applications. Dr. Sable orchestrated the successful acquisition of VPT by Heico Corporation in 2009.

In 2012, Dr. Sable accepted the position of Adjunct Professor of Practice in the Virginia Tech Electrical and Computer Engineering Department and now teaches one class per semester. He serves on the boards of several companies and assists several local entrepreneurs in business start-ups. In 2018, he was inducted into the Virginia Tech Academy of Engineering Excellence.

John Goehrke 
John Goehrke

Currently CEO of HexaTech, Inc., the world leader in next-generation semiconductor material aluminum nitride (ALN). John brings over 30 years of sales, marketing and general management experience to Prime Photonics. Most recently, he was CEO at Centice Corporation, a provider of unique technology and systems for identification and verification of chemical substances. Previously, he was CEO at Nextreme Thermal Solutions, a leader in thin-film thermoelectrics, which was sold to Laird Technologies in February 2013. Other operational roles include CEO of siXis Inc., pioneers of advanced Silicon Circuit Board (SiCB) technology, and COO of Luna Innovations, where he was part of the executive management team that successfully completed an Initial Public Offering. Previous to Luna Innovations, John was CEO of Luna Technologies and General Manager of Acterna’s Access Division, based in Germantown, MD, and the Fiber Optics Division based in St. Etienne, France. John earned his B.S. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Connecticut and M.B.A. from the University of Pittsburgh.

John Goehrke 
Daniel Ward

Mr. Ward joined the Virginia Tech Foundation in April 2008 where he serves as its Chief Investment Officer - Endowment. He leads all aspects of managing the Foundation’s portfolio including investment selection and setting asset allocation policy. Almost 50% of the portfolio is invested internationally, including a mix of niche and direct investments. The Virginia Tech endowment performance consistently ranks in the top 25% of its peers and was honored by Institutional Investor as the top mid-sized endowment of 2011. Prior to joining Virginia Tech he was the director of research for Integritas Advisors, a family office, from July 2004 – April 2008. Mr. Ward holds a BBA from The University of Michigan Business School, a MBA from The University of Florida Warrington College of Business and is a CFA charterholder.