Honorary Award Winners

The Sal Buccieri Venture Memorial Impact Award

The Sal Buccieri Memorial Venture Impact Award is awarded to an individual in the venture capital and entrepreneurial community who exemplifies the passion towards seeing early stage entrepreneurial opportunities succeed and flourish. This individual is one who has clearly impacted early stage technology and fast growth venture opportunities by providing the essential capital, extensive counseling and necessary vision to allow such companies to win in today’s competitive environment. The recipient of this Award is one who strives to create a better environment for all so that entrepreneurs achieve their dreams and attain success.

The Sal Buccieri Memorial Venture Impact Award is named in memory for Salvatore Buccieri. Sal passed away in December 2000 after a hard-fought battle with cancer at the age of 39. Sal was a partner at Arthur Andersen in the Growth Company Practice that he joined in 1984 after graduating from Drexel University. He worked extensively throughout his career assisting early stage companies with financial and business issues. Sal was closely involved with Early Stage East® and is missed by all.

Past Recipients



Josh Kopelman, Co-Founder, First Round Capital  

Brenda Gavin, Co-Founder, Quaker BioVentures

2008 Walter “Buck” Buckley, President and CEO and Doug Alexander, Managing Director, Internet Capital
2007 E. Rogers Novak, General Partner, Novak Biddle Venture Partners
2006 Rob McCord, Managing Director, PA Early Stage
2005 John Martinson, General Partner, Edison Venture Fund
2004 Frank A. Bonsal, Jr., Director, Red Abbey Venture Partners
2003 Howard Ross, Founder & Partner, LLR Equity Partners
2002 Stephen M. Goodman, Partner, Morgan Lewis LLP
2001 Frederick J. Beste, III, Partner, Mid-Atlantic Venture Funds

The Robert A. Spar Memorial Founders’ Award

In memory of Robert A. Spar - An Inspiration, Supporter, Colleague and Friend.

Robert A. Spar started his legal career at Weinberg & Green in 1988 and stayed on when that firm became the Baltimore office of Philadelphia- based Saul Ewing in 1998.

Spar forecasted early the increasing importance of biotechnology as an industry in Maryland and the need for legal representation by life science companies. So he made that the focus of his practice and worked with both startups and large pharmaceutical companies. Robert A. Spar was loved and respected by his colleagues and clients who remember his helpful nature, sense of humor and indomitable spirit.

Spar served as co-chairman of the Life Sciences Transactions and Strategic Alliances team within the Life Sciences Practice group. Spar also helped found the Maryland Incubator Company of the Year Awards in 2000, and co-chaired the transactions and strategic alliances team of Saul Ewing’s Life Science practice.

Past Recipients





University of Maryland BioPark 

Elias A. Zerhouni, MD, Former Dir National Institutes of Health


Maxine Ballen, President and CEO, New Jersey Technology Council

2008 Richard C. Birkmeyer, Ph.D, Senior Partner, Leading Technologies Inc. Founder, Strategic Diagnostic, Inc. (NASDAQ: SDIX)

The Early Stage East® Founders’ Award

The Early Stage East® Founders’ Award is awarded to an individual who has shown outstanding commitment, leadership and support of the venture capital community as a whole. This individual is committed to the growth of the overall venture capital community and has shown a belief in and commitment to this region in the development of venture capital and entrepreneurial activity. (Subsequently renamed the Robert A. Spar Memorial Founders Award)

Past Recipients

2008 RoseAnn Rosenthal, President and CEO of Ben Franklin Technology Partners
2007 John Hurley, Founder, Tech Capital Magazine
Doug Rainey, Editor, Delaware Business Ledger
Diane Struck, CEO, Eastern Technology Council
2006 J. Douglas Hazelton, Executive Vice President, Bank of America
2005 J.C. Weiss, Professor, University of Baltimore, Presented at Bio-Life-Tech
Suzanne Carney, Executive Director, MAC Alliance
2004 R. Christopher Klemm, PhD., Professor, University of Washington
2003 Senator Thomas Carper, Senator, United States of America
2002 M. Scott Albert, General Partner, The Aurora Funds
2001 Warren V. “Pete” Musser, Founder, The Musser Group