Board of Directors

Mitchell Mumma

General Partner, Intersouth Partners

Intersouth Partners, founded in 1985, is one of the nation’s oldest early-stage venture capital firms, managing $780 million in seven venture capital partnerships.  One of the largest early-stage venture funds, it has invested in almost 100 companies, and focuses on the life sciences and technology sectors.

Mumma is a general partner with Intersouth Partners, where he has primary responsibility for the firm’s technology portfolio, which includes investments in enterprise infrastructure (including software, tools and databases); processing power (including semiconductor materials and chips) and communications (such as network software and components).  He has served on the boards of more than 20 private companies for Intersouth over the last 18 years, and currently serves on the boards of five Intersouth portfolio companies: Bright Hub, Infoglide Software, TapRoot Systems, Trinity Convergence and Ziptronix.  Prior to joining Intersouth in 1989, he served in management roles at three Intersouth portfolio companies.  Previously, he worked as a manager in the high growth business practice at Touche Ross & Co. (now Deloitte & Touche).

Mumma is a Director and former Chairman of the Board of the Council for Entrepreneurial Development (CED), the largest entrepreneurial support organization in the United States.  He serves on the Board of Directors of the North Carolina Technology Association (NCTA).   He is an investor and Advisory Board member of The Entrepreneur’s Philanthropic Venture Fund of the Triangle Community Foundation and serves on the Advisory Board for N.C. State University’s Engineering Entrepreneurs Program.  He has served as a mentor to the Kauffman Foundation’s Kauffman Venture Fellows Program.

Mumma is a frequent speaker on the topic of venture capital.  He is an adjunct professor at the Kenan-Flagler Business School at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, where he teaches and advises on the entrepreneurship curriculum.  Mumma has earned an A.B. in management science from Duke University.

Jonathan Aberman

Founder and Managing Director, Amplifier Ventures

Amplifier Ventures is a group of early stage venture capital funds that invests in technology start ups in the Mid-Atlantic. Amplifier also operates the Amplifier Networks a family of online social communities that provide educational content, relevant news and business advice to entrepreneurs, investors and service providers in the Washington, DC technology community.

Prior to forming Amplifier, Aberman was a venture capital attorney, where as a Partner in three top-tier law firms, he mentored the formation and growth of over 60 promising emerging technology companies and represented more than 15 venture capital funds in transactions with an aggregate value in excess of $1 billion. He has a prior career as an investment banker and arbitrage trader.

Aberman has served as a Bright Hub Director since 2006. He is also a member of the Board of Directors of two other Amplifier Portfolio companies - iBelong Networks and Hook Mobile. He is a professor at two prestigious educational institutions, and serves in advisory capacity in many well known organizations that promote company formation and entrepreneurship. He is a frequent writer and commentator on venture capital topics for regional and national publications and is an active blogger on topics affecting venture capital, entrepreneurship and the technology economy.

Aberman is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of George Washington University. He holds a Masters in International Economics with Distinction from The London School of Economics. Aberman is the recipient of Bachelors and Masters of Science degrees from both Cambridge University and a Masters in Law from New York University School of Law.

Robert Smith

Chairman and Co-Founder

Robert Smith is Chairman and Co-Founder of Bright Hub lending his more than 20 years of experience creating and managing interactive community-based businesses to the role.  His extensive experience in general management, business development, sales and marketing and product development has helped Bright Hub establish a strong foothold in the marketplace.  He has served as Chairman of the Board since 2006.

Smith is currently the CEO of iBelong Networks, a community publishing company enabling organizations to create viral networks of people and content, which he also co-founded. For several years prior to his involvement with Bright Hub and iBelong Networks, Smith led one of the first internet business incubators in the nation, Vector Development, LLC, where he worked directly with Internet-based start-up companies as both a strategic advisor and investor. He helped found and guide companies in e-government, e-commerce, identity monitoring/management, community-based widget design and nonprofit, community-based mapping.

Smith was a member of the AOL management team where he helped large media companies such as the New York Times and the Tribune Company create their first online community ventures. He went on to serve as General Manager of all of AOL’s community programming operations. He was founder of AOL’s Digital City, the first nation-wide city guide service, growing that business to over $100 million in sales.

Smith is a retired United States Naval Officer and holds a MBA in Marketing Concentrations: Advertising and Electronic Publishing from George Washington University and a BA in Political Science from the University of Southern California.

Bill Phelan

Chief Executive Officer and Co-Founder

As CEO and Co-Founder, Bill Phelan brings more than 20 years of operational, technical and financial experience to Bright Hub. Phelan is an accomplished entrepreneur and leader having led several ventures through the start up years and successfully managing them through significant acquisitions by large public companies. He has spearheaded the creation of Bright Hub’s vision and positioning and established a business model that is driving the next-generation of social commerce networking.

Prior to co-founding Bright Hub, Phelan was founder and CEO of OneMade, an “eBay like” e-commerce marketplace exchange that was successfully sold to America Online in May 2003. He also served as the Chief Strategist and COO of the technology and network services business for Florists Transworld Delivery (FTD™), the world’s largest floral technology services organization connecting over 20,000 domestic florists and more than 40,000 international florists through an e-commerce floral order exchange, the Mercury Network™, and led the company’s successful acquisition by Leonard Green and Associates in February 2004.


Phelan serves on Bright Hub’s board of directors and is also currently on the board of MTI. He holds degrees from City University of New York-Baruch College and Siena College.



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