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HIT Fund Team

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Meet the HIT Fund Team

The High Impact Technology (HIT) Fund aims to accelerate the commercial delivery of Stanford-based innovations, out of the lab and into the world. We provide seed funding along with strategic and advisory support to faculty, students, postdocs, and staff to help transform innovative, advantaged, and scalable Stanford technologies into new products, services, or companies.

Meet the team below or learn more about the HIT Fund!

 Director, HIT Fund

Nitin Parekh


Nitin Parekh - View OTL Profile - Contact

Program Manager, HIT Fund


Laura Clark Murray - View OTL Profile - Contact

HIT Fund MBA Interns

Read about each of our current HIT Fund MBA Interns below. If you are interested in becoming a HIT Fund MBA Intern, visit the MBA Intern Program page for more information about the program and how to apply.

Ben Collins, MBA ‘23

Ben Collins, MBA ‘23

Ben has spent the last four years working in technology commercialization focused on applied sciences and engineering. Before earning his MBA at Stanford Graduate School of Business, Ben was an investor at Rhapsody Venture Partners, where he focused on early-stage investments across autonomous vehicles, electronics, building materials, agriculture and more. At Rhapsody, he frequently assisted scientists/academics spinning out technologies from university and national labs. Working on behalf of portfolio companies, Ben negotiated several joint development agreements with multibillion-dollar industrial partners. Prior to investing, Ben worked in strategy consulting largely focused on the telecommunications industry. View LinkedIn Profile


Ben holds an MBA from Stanford and an SB in Mechanical Engineering from MIT.

Bharti Singhla, MBA ‘24

Bharti Singhla, MBA '24

Bharti Singhla is a passionate cleantech entrepreneur and operational leader, currently an MBA + MS (EIPER - Clean Energy) student at Stanford Graduate School of Business. Before coming to Stanford, Bharti was the co-founder and COO of Chakr Innovation, a VC-backed startup, where she spearheaded the deployment of a patented device that captures 80-90% of black carbon emissions from diesel engines. Bharti's strategic and operational acumen helped the company create a profitable business line, build a thriving global customer base and secure multiple rounds of funding. An alumnus of IIT Delhi with a degree in Chemical Engineering, she kick-started her career at The Boston Consulting Group, India, where she excelled in strategic transformation and sales improvement projects.  Beyond the boardroom, Bharti is recognized for contributing to the climate tech space, including by UNIDO, Govt. of Finland, YourStory Media, and Reuters. She is also the recipient of the 'Women Entrepreneur of the Year' award from TiE NCR in India. In her role at the Fund, Bharti brings her entrepreneurial expertise and profound understanding of sustainable business strategies to nurture and guide the next generation of climate tech innovators. View LinkedIn Profile

Previous Work Experience:

COO/Co-founder at Chakr Innovation; The Boston Consulting Group, India

Misha Baitemirova, MBA Candidate '23

Misha Baitemirova, from Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, is pursuing a master’s degree in biomedical informatics with a focus on artificial intelligence at Stanford School of Medicine, and an MBA at Stanford Graduate School of Business. She graduated from the University of St. Thomas with a bachelor’s degree in bioinformatics. Misha aspires to advance healthcare in underserved communities to help bridge the healthcare gap. Her startup Clinicai is developing tools for continuous health tracking and chronic disease detection at home. She worked at Memomi Labs developing AR/AI digital mirrors and underwent entrepreneurial training at Singularity University. She has done research on the microbiome, DNA damage response, and gene modification using CRISPR-Cas9 at Texas Children’s Hospital and Baylor College of Medicine, NIBR, and the University of St. Thomas. She received scholarships from the Open Society Foundation, Google, and Genentech. View Stanford Profile

Previous Work Experience:

CEO/Co-founder at Clinicai Inc; Director of Partnerships at Memomi Labs (acquired by Walmart)

Edgar Bendezu, MBA Candidate '23

Edgar Bendezu, MBA '23

Edgar is pursuing an MBA at Stanford GSB and an MS in Environment and Resources at the Doerr School of Sustainability. He holds a BS in Industrial Engineering. Before coming to Stanford, he worked in the Oil and Gas, Transportation, Industrials, Financial Services, and Tech industries in different roles involving corporate finance, project management, product management, business analytics, and risk management.  He decided to attend Stanford to pursue a career in fighting climate change. During his time at Stanford, he has worked and conducted research in mobility, agriculture, and energy exploring different technologies and business models. Edgar believes in the power of technology, policy, and markets to create a sustainable future.  View LinkedIn Profile

Previous Work Experience

Business Development at Modern Hydrogen (Seattle); Operations at Amazon Smart Vehicles (Seattle); Strategy at Mountain Hazelnuts (Bhutan); Business Strategy, Product Management & Risk Management at BBVA (Peru); Project Management at ABB (Peru).

Sophia Lugo, MBA Candidate '23

Sophia Lugo is currently in her second year at the Graduate School of Business. She has worked in VC and tech policy; in product strategy in the Precision Health Solutions Incubator at one of China's largest biotech companies; as a consultant in life sciences and healthcare at BCG; and in health financing, supply chain, and product delivery at the Gates Foundation. She holds a BA in Philosophy of Science and Biology from Harvard University and an MA in Global Affairs from Tsinghua University in Beijing (Schwarzman Scholars Program). View LinkedIn Profile

Previous Work Experience:

Associate Strategy Officer at Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation; Consultant at BCG; Product strategy at BGI Genomics (Shenzhen, China)

Yutong Zhu, MBA Candidate '23

Yutong is pursuing an MBA and an MS in Environment and Resources at Stanford. He is passionate about commercializing cutting-edge technologies to solve climate challenges. Prior to Stanford, he had five years experience working in Australia's federal research organization, CSIRO, developing and commercializing technologies in climate, sustainability, mineral processing, and advanced materials. He holds one utility patent and twelve design patents. Yutong holds a bachelor and master of chemical engineering from the University of Queensland in Australia. View Stanford Profile

Previous Work Experience

Five years technology commercialization and business development experience at Australia's federal research organization focusing on mineral processing, advanced materials, and chemical engineering.

Catherine Berner, MBA '22

Catherine is dedicated to bringing new climate technologies to market. She designed and built award-winning factories while leading the product division at a waste-to-energy startup. Then, at the private equity firm Azimuth Capital Management, she invested in the energy transition with a focus on carbon capture. Now she is helping launch new climate ventures. Catherine holds a degree from UC Berkeley College of Engineering, where she graduated with honors in environmental and energy engineering, and earned her MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business in 2022. View LinkedIn Profile

Previous Work Experience:

Commercialization at Trofx (Palo Alto, California); Azimuth Capital Management (Mountain View, California); Head of Product at Sanivation (Kenya)