Starr Marcello is executive director of the University of Chicago’s Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation. She oversees the center’s major initiatives, including the lauded Edward L. Kaplan New Venture Challenge startup launch program, which has produced more than 180 new businesses that have raised more than $565 million. New Venture Challenge alumni include Grubhub and Braintree.
Marcello joined the center in 2005 and became its executive director in 2016.
“The Polsky Center has been a huge contributor for driving a culture of innovation at the University of Chicago and on the south side of the city,” she told Blue Sky. “We’re very excited about the businesses we’ve been helping to support and launch.”
She became an adjunct assistant professor of entrepreneurship at the university’s Booth School of Business in 2017.
Marcello, who spends her free time teaching entrepreneurship to high school students, is a member of the executive advisory board of TechWeek and the board of the United States Association for Small Business and Entrepreneurship.
She has a B.A. in English and film studies from Wesleyan University, as well as both an M.A. in humanities/humanistic studies and an M.B.A. from the University of Chicago.