Empowering the Next Generation
of Entrepreneurial Leaders

Our Mission

Columbia Healthcare Ventures (CHV) is a student-led organization based at Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health that strives to inspire future leaders through collaboration with experts and pioneers to create innovative and sustainable solutions that will address pressing challenges in the healthcare landscape.

What We Do

Provide Networking Opportunities

We provide a space to allow like-minded individuals to connect and meet across Columbia University, New York City, and beyond.

Host Speakers &
Informational Panels

We host speakers to engage and inspire our members, as well as to learn more about how innovation and entrepreneurship is shaping the healthcare industry.

Site Visits & City Treks

We host visits to companies and entrepreneurship interest groups to learn more about what is happening in the greater New York area.

Our Team

Sam Melman


A proud New York native, Sam’s favorite ways to spend time in NYC is running through its many parks and playing music with his band across the city’s venues. Prior to Columbia, Sam was a Business Development Executive at Ciklum, a top IT Services firm. He received his B.A. in Politics from Brandeis University in 2016.

Shelley Shen

VP, Operations & Finance

Prior to Mailman, Shelley worked at a multi-specialty ophthalmology clinic in Atlanta, GA and obtained a B.S. in Neuroscience and Behavioral Biology from Emory University. She is originally from Minnesota, and loves perusing art museums, watching documentaries, and discovering hidden corners of the city.

Richa Rai

VP, External Affairs

Hailing from India, Richa loves exploring new places especially trying numerous cuisines the city has to offer. Prior to Mailman, Richa completed her MBBS, undergraduate degree In Medicine from Mumbai, India and worked at a 1000-bed not for profit hospital in her hometown of Varanasi. Shes also an avid dog lover and enjoys spending time with her dog when she is home.

Denita Utami

VP, Programming

Prior to Mailman, Denita worked as a primary care physician, as well as a Program Manager for a healthcare crowdfunding start-up. She graduated from University of Melbourne, Australia and University of Indonesia with a combined Bachelor of Medical Science/MD degree. In her free time, she loves traveling, visiting new restaurants/cafes, watching movies & TV shows, running, and going to fitness classes.

Camila Saviñon

VP, Programming

Camila obtained her B.S. in Public Health with a minor in Psychology from Texas A&M University. In her free time, she likes to explore the many festivals and events the city has to offer.

Valerie Francillon

VP, Communications

Prior to Mailman, Valerie worked in research at the Miller School of Medicine. At the University of Miami, she obtained a B.S. in Health with minors in Health Management & Policy, Chemistry, and Public Health. In her free time she enjoys traveling and listening to podcasts.

Faculty Advisor

Asha Saxena

Adjunct Professor, Columbia University

Board of Directors of ACULYST CORP and FTI INC

Asha is a strategic, innovative leader with a proven track record of building successful businesses. She served as a CEO of ACULYST Corp. Healthcare Analytics Firm. Prior to that she also served as a President and CEO of Future Technologies, Inc. (FTI), an international Data Management and Analytics firm for 20 years. The firm specializes in providing Data Analytics Solutions focusing on Fortune 1000 companies in US. She also built an e-commerce company for 3000 dealers nationwide.

At Columbia, she has served as Entrepreneur-in-Residence for Columbia Business School and as faculty for Graduate Business Studies. She teaches entrepreneurship, big data, and data analytics courses to MBA, MSE, MHA, EMBA students at Columbia.

Industry Advisors

Want to get involved?
Contact us!

Lona Vincent

Senior Manager, Insights and Experience Strategy

Johnson & Johnson | J&J Design

Lona works in strategy and innovation at Johnson & Johnson’s design studio in New York City where she leads the business model innovation team. With roots in business strategy and human-centered design, she’s interested in shaping the future of healthcare. She is active in the venture community serving as a mentor for the Yale, Cornell, and MIT health hackathons and is a Venture Fellow with FundRx, a healthcare venture capital firm. Lona is an alum of Mailman School of Public Health and received her master’s here from Columbia University where she was a fellow with Columbia Technology Ventures. She lives in New York City where she enjoys weekend brunch and plotting to launch her own start-up venture.

Deepak Mittal

Chief Executive Officer


Deepak is an accomplished serial entrepreneur and investor with a proven track record in business/IT/product strategy and business transformation. Currently, Deepak holds the CEO position of xtLytics, LLC and NextGen Invent Corporation (NGI). xtLytics offers analytics platform, robotic process automation platform, and out of the box transformational applications for Healthcare and Insurance industry.  NextGen Invent corporation is a leading global professional services company that specializes in IT strategy, technology, data science and data management services and has always been at the forefront in providing disruptive solutions using technologies such as Big Data Analytics, Blockchain, IOT, Artificial Intelligence and Augmented Reality. Based on innovative work done in business transformation, Deepak was awarded Entrepreneur of the Month by Silicon Review magazine.

Deepak has an MBA from Columbia Business School, an M.S. in Industrial & Management Engineering from Indian Institute of Technology, and a B.S. in Computer Science from Bundelkhand Engineering College.

Mike Lieberman

Senior Vice President, Medical Science

Klick Health

Mike Lieberman, Ph.D., has had a longstanding interest in science and business and the intersection of the two. As the Senior Vice President of Medical Science at Klick Health, he is the medical lead for their innovation consultancy, engineering lab, and healthcare venture arms – helping healthcare companies develop and implement technological innovations to improve their businesses, while identifying and accelerating promising startups focused on healthcare technology. Previously he worked in drug commercialization and marketing at Area23, building and leading their medical strategy team to launch drugs in diabetes, oncology, hepatitis C, epilepsy, opioid addiction, rare diseases, and others, and worked in a similar capacity at AgencyRx  prior. He studied molecular and cellular biology at UC Berkeley, and earned his PhD in the Cellular, Molecular, and Biophysical Studies program at Columbia University. After his doctorate he studied mechanisms of chronic pain at Cambridge University, where he was recruited by UCB Pharma to lead a non-opioid pain therapeutics program in Belgium.