Nakia Melecio


Strategic Advisor, Entrepreneurship and Innovation

Nakia helps researchers commercialize their Biotechnology, Energy, Defense, Military Technology, Education, Government Technology, and Aerospace technology. He also helps them secure investments from a network of federally funded laboratories, universities, and corporations. Throughout his career, he has worked with industry, academia, and government. As a result, Nakia has a unique and deep understanding of the early-stage innovation ecosystem and technology transfer, proven scientific and technical expertise, and decades of operational experience in technology-driven, high-growth companies. He has successfully helped startups and develop businesses worldwide in the United States, Australia, the United Kingdom, Canada, Nigeria, and Ghana.

Nakia’s passion as a business advisor, deep-tech, deep-science mentor, and startup coach inspires and helps entrepreneurs and startups spun out of university research. A seasoned entrepreneur, Nakia allows entrepreneurs to execute their ideas while guiding them in the total startup journey — from product development and selling to the government, to their go-to-market strategy and customer discovery to scaling a company and getting capital. He has worked with more than 700 startups worldwide, with more than 15,000 hours of classroom time working with entrepreneurs.

Nakia is an active member and mentor of the technology community and a frequent contributor to numerous business organizations, including the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA). He is a longtime technology startup mentor, having served in that role at Advanced Technology Development Center at Georgia Institute of Technology, the National Science Foundation Innovation Corps (NSF I-Corps), the Association of University Technology Managers (AUTM), Georgia Tech Create X mentor, MIT Hack Medicine, DOD lab mentor, NSF I-Corps Adjunct Instructor at Georgia Institute of Technology, Hack for Defense Instructor (H4D), Defense Innovation Accelerator Mentor (DIA), and StartMe at Emory University. He also has a deep understanding of SBIR-STTR. He has been intimately involved with many new emerging growth technologies, including government, universities, and corporate innovation. He is a board member for several startups and is involved in two Health-tech Medical Device startups, which are actively funded by SBIR Phase I NIH and SBIR Phase I NSF. Mr. Melecio has a master’s degree in Education, Teaching, Learning, and Educational Technology, a bachelor’s degree in Psychology, a bachelor’s degree in Cognitive Science, and a Doctor of Psychology Educational Psychology, Educational Leadership.