SMMG MedTech Board of Directors
Steve (Zeke) Zielinski
Founder, President, and Board member
Zeke is the Founder and President of SMMG MedTech. Zeke is a MedTech Sales Executive with over 30 years of experience in start-up, mid-size, and large-cap Medical device companies to include CR Bard, ACS (Eli Lily), Heart Technology, and Boston Scientific. He has also run Sales Organizations for early stage startups that include CoAxia, Interrad Medical, Angiotech, LifeWatch AngioScore, and Spectranetics. He is currently the Sales Director for Coronary Excellence with Abbott. He resides in Mound, Minnesota and is a graduate of Purdue University.
Jeremy Abbs, SMMG MedTech Board member, has been a senior MedTech Executive with Vital Images (Acquired by Canon Instruments), Co-Founded Millipede (acquired by Boston Scientific), and Cayenne Medical (Acquired by Zimmer Bimoet). He also serves on other nonprofit boards, including International Hearing Foundation at University of Minnesota, The Minneapolis neighborhood-based BLEND Awards, and past board member of Fulton Neighborhood Association.
He currently consults with Bright- Research Partners, a CRO (Clinical Research Organization). He is graduate of Purdue University.
Joanie Natalizio has extensive experience working for several top healthcare companies including Johnson and Johnson and G.D. Searle (Pfizer) as well as multiple healthcare systems. Her areas of expertise include executive and physician recruiting as well as career management, succession planning and organizational development. Joanie is a certified Executive and Career coach in addition to having her master’s degree in Marriage, Family and Child therapy. She is a published author and her book, “Fast Track Guide to a Professional Job Search” can be found on most major bookstore sites.
Bryan Claseman is currently Chairman of the Board at Aurora CTS and Computational Life and a Director of SMMG Medtech and Pulaski Lake Shores Association. He formed Claseman Consulting in 2017 to help early stage and mid-size companies through formation and growth transitions. Prior to forming Claseman Consulting, Mr. Claseman served as Chairman. Board Member, and Interim President and CEO at Biocoat, leading to the successful sale to 1315 Capital, and a Board Member of two non-profit organizations: Pulaski Lake Shores Association and The Path Drama Ministry. He has also held marketing, sales operations, business development, and information technology positions at Spectranetics (now part of Philips), Intact Vascular, Preventice, Cardiovascular Systems, SurModics, Zimmer Spine, Intra-Therapeutics, Boston Scientific, and two divisions of Pfizer (Schneider and American Medical Systems).
Chris Gustanski is the CEO and Chief Talent Guide of Due North Executive Search which specializes in the identification and recruitment of top MedTech talent across a variety of commercial functions such as Marketing, Sales, Commercial Operations, Product Management, and others. Chris founded Due North in 2018 to better serve the needs MedTech leaders after over a decade leading Marketing recruitment practices for several nationally recognized executive search firms. Chris is also a classically trained marketer who prior to his search career held mid to senior level marketing and product management roles in several Fortune 500 companies. Chris holds both an MBA in Marketing from the University of Minnesota and a Master of International Management from the University of St. Thomas.
Curt has worked in the Hospital/Medical environment with over 40 years of experience. This includes 36 years Sales Management experience at the District, Regional and VP level. His hallmark is leading teams to over plan performance. His career includes Extensive sales management at Picker, Spectranetics, SRI Surgical Express, Angioscore and Philips Image Guided Therapy. He has established a record of hiring and developing the top performing Medical device reps in the industry. Curt was part of the founding Sales organization at Angioscore, helping drive that company to a successful acquisition in 2014. He is currently a Regional Sales Director at Philips Image guided Therapy. He holds a Degree from Michigan State University in Finance and a MBA from the University of Colorado.