Menlo Circus Club Event to Feature New Lester Center Director, Feb. 16

Serial entrepreneur André Marquis, MBA 96, the new executive director of the Lester Center for Entrepreneurship, will be the keynote speaker at the 12th annual Haas Celebration in Silicon Valley at the Menlo Circus Club in Atherton on Feb. 16.

The popular event, a valuable networking opportunity for students and alumni alike, will begin at 6:30 p.m.

Marquis has attended the gathering for years looking for talent and serving as a resource to students. As this year's featured speaker, he will talk about the dramatic changes in entrepreneurship during the past decade and what is coming in the decade ahead.

“With the rise of global connectivity, cloud-based computing, and custom production in industries from clothing to pharmaceuticals to consumer electronics,” says Marquis, “it is possible to go from an idea to a scaled up business with many fewer people and a lot less capital than even a few years ago."

Marquis, who joined the Lester Center last fall, is a firm believer that technological tools can help entrepreneurs realize their dreams more quickly. He says he is excited about how much technology is changing today's entrepreneurial landscape.

Marquis knows firsthand about starting up Silicon Valley businesses. Before the dot-com boom, he co-founded Cybergold, an Internet advertising company that went public and was acquired by MyPoints. He then founded and served as chief marketing officer of San Francisco-based, which acquired.

He helped found the Chorus Business Unit at Eli Lilly and Company in Palo Alto, where he was chief operating officer, as well as Amplyx Pharmaceuticals in Palo Alto, where he was CEO. He also has served as vice president and chief technology officer at other enterprises.

Last year more than 450 attended the Menlo Circus Club event, and it is expected to sell out this year. To register by Feb. 11, visit