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Meet mHUB's Spring 2024 HardTech Development Fellows

Introducing the Spring 2024 Landis Family HardTech Development Fellows at mHUB 

mHUB’s Catalyze Initiative promotes wealth creation for a diverse set of founders through a series of targeted programs and partnerships. One of these programs is The Landis Family Fellowship for mHUB HardTech Development Services. This is a 6-month fellowship program for talented people of color that enables entrepreneurs to gain access to $6M in equipment and a pipeline for paid work in product design, innovation, and R&D with manufacturers.

Meet the Spring 2024 Landis Family fellows who began their program in January.

Dr-Carolyn-Carta-2024Landis-2-copyDr. Carolyn Carta

Dr. Carta is a seasoned polymer chemist and materials scientist with a dynamic background. Growing up in a diverse Italian-American family instilled in her the values of work ethic, compromise, and adaptable leadership. Her academic journey, spanning Trinity College, the College of William and Mary, and UCLA, reflects a unique blend of art, chemistry, and materials science. Her expertise in polymer chemistry and materials characterization is rooted in diverse research experiences, from exploring artist varnishes' aging properties to NSF-funded nanoparticle synthesis for heavy metal detection and photochemical testing of dyes in thin films. Her PhD work at UCLA delved into fracture mechanics of composite materials, a foundation for her impactful five-year tenure at the Getty Conservation Institute, preserving the cultural treasures of Walt Disney's animation cell collection. 
Founding CArtLab Solutions in 2023, Carolyn is on a mission. Her company collaborates with mission-driven organizations, employing interdisciplinary research and characterization to solve complex challenges. As a Landis Fellow, Carolyn is thrilled to contribute to underrepresented voices in the hard tech space, aligning with her commitment to equity and innovation. The fellowship is more than a professional opportunity; it's a chance to grow and bridge knowledge gaps in product development. Carolyn's recent work experience in sustainable additive manufacturing and 3D printing, particularly in eyeglass lenses, dental appliances, and implantable biomaterials, adds a cutting-edge dimension to her expertise. The legacy of the Landis Family, pioneers in thin-wall injection-molded packaging, resonates deeply with Carolyn, a polymer chemist inspired by the convergence of history and innovation. In joining this community, she looks forward to the shared journey of learning, creating, and shaping a more equitable future in manufacturing. 


Babafemi-Ekundayo-2024Landis-4-copyBabafemi Ekundayo 

Babafemi is an author, engineer, and founder with a passion for making a difference. Having written and published two books tackling important issues ("New Nigeria" and "New Philistine"), he is the founder of Calabax, a startup pioneering innovative robotic self-checkout shopping carts. Applying his unique skillset and background, Babafemi is on a path to revolutionizing the way we shop. He's excited for what the future holds and is an avid performance art enthusiast. "I deeply enjoy creating spaces where people can express their unique voices and ideas to elevate and connect with their community through laughter." 


Yandi-Farinango-2024Landis-6-copyYandi Farinango

Yandi is a lifelong Chicagoan and proud alumnus of both University of Illinois at Chicago & Loyola University. While pursuing his undergraduate degree in Bioengineering, Yandi worked as an R&D Engineering intern for a local Med Tech startup. It was here that he discovered the field of Machine Learning and began exploring ways to leverage data and analytics in new product development.  
After 3 years in the Medical Device industry, Yandi made a career pivot to focus on Machine Learning development. Yandi completed his Masters in Computer Science from Loyola University in 2022 and has been working as an Machine Learning Engineer for a global chemical manufacturer ever since. Today, Yandi works at the forefront AI technology where he builds and delivers smart, personalized applications for both internal/external clients. Outside the tech world, Yandi helps his family run the online store for their Indigenous Art & Jewelry business. When he is not building, Yandi practices the martial art of Muy Thai and enjoys bike rides along the Chicago Lakeshore. 


Salem-Boyland-2024Landis-7-copySalem Jorden 

Salem is an artist, creative technologist, and storyteller based in Chicago, IL. She currently works as a Software Engineer and is a passionate advocate for ethically responsible technological innovation. Prior to falling in love with computer science, her professional journey began as a fine artist in New York City. Her artistic foundation serves as the bedrock for her approach to software development, infusing her work with a unique blend of precision and imaginative problem-solving. Born from her futurist philosophy and techno optimism is an unwavering belief in the power of technology to act as a force for good and create a world that works for all of life. Collectively, she believes that we can engineer a sustainable future and revolutionize the human-technology experience for generations to come. 

Vincent-Redman-2024Landis-5-copyVincent Redman

Passionate and solution-driven, Vincent is an Industrial Designer with experience across engineering and design disciplines. From the age of 8, he knew he wanted to be a creative and innovative person with his father and mother supporting his dream in every way possible. From sketching on notebook backings to disassembling and reassembling his favorite toys, Vincent has always been creative and interested in the functionality of products.   
Vincent was the Lead  Subject Matter Expert for an M.I.T. xPro course for Rapid Prototyping, and also acted as the Lead Integration Engineer for several successful autonomous vehicle builds. He has been a guide through the product design process and production including initial concepting, form design, prototyping,  mechanical engineering, platform and assembly documentation, graphic design, scenic-themed designs, hardware automation and video editing. These are all skills he intends to use in his new journey, which is to provide a health care solution for those suffering from severe allergies.

He plans to develop a solution through traditional and non-traditional design along with smart technology. With years of research into this area, in addition to having severe food allergies himself, Vincent is dedicated to bringing this solution to those suffering from allergies and similar health conditions. Health solutions are important to him, as he has become more aware of the severity of several conditions and functions that require improved solutions. 

Did you know that mHUB HardTech Development Services provided members with more than $2M in income in 2021, and generated an additional $2M in 2022 alone? Learn more about how you can become a hardtech consultant!