Our Team

Mark B. Shappee, Founder and Managing Director

Mark's ability to serve the firm's clients in its strategic advisory practices of mergers, acquisitions and divestitures is built upon more than 40 years of business experience, starting as a Systems Analyst at "Space Park" for TRW, now Northrop Grumman. The first half of Mark's career provided him with an in-depth knowledge of the large, public company perspective on sector consolidation through mergers & acquisitions in the U.S., Europe, Asia-Pacific and Africa. Responsibility for acquisition integration, operations and, occasionally, divestitures came along with the broadening of his functional experience in the roles of Chief Financial, Corporate Development & Marketing Officer.

Since founding Venture Management, Mark has been able to leverage that large corporation experience associated with acquiring and being acquired. Responsibility for the post-acquisition integration as well as the pre-acquisition planning and analysis provided Mark with an understanding of the issues and challenges on "both sides of the table". This perspective allows Mark to appreciate the many issues to be addressed by management teams, investors and business owners throughout the process of an "acquisition", and to earn the continued trust and confidence of clients and advisors.

Mark has an undergraduate degree in Economics from Claremont McKenna College and received his MBA from Harvard Business School. Additionally, Mark has completed other Executive Programs from Stanford and New York Universities in corporate finance and mergers and acquisitions. He is a licensed advisor and active in a number of professional associations.


Jason M. Gayl, Managing Director

Jason manages engagements in the Mid-Atlantic Region, with a particular focus on high-technology government contractors and consultancies supporting the Defense, Intelligence, and Homeland Security Agencies. Prior to Venture Management, Jason developed his financial analysis and modeling expertise at the Calvert Group, Thompson Financial and Brown Brothers Harriman & Co. Jason has over a decade of experience in negotiating and structuring mergers and acquisitions, debt and equity financings, strategic alliances and joint ventures. During this time, Jason has developed deep expertise in partnering institutional investors and strategic acquirers with entrepreneurs pursuing corporate development and exit strategies. While predominantly active in the A&D field, Jason has been involved in Healthcare, Real Estate, Energy and Entertainment transactions.

Jason received his undergraduate degree in Economics from Boston University and his MBA from the Robert H. Smith School of Business, with concentrations in finance, strategy and entrepreneurship. He is active in the Washington DC new venture, and small and middle market communities.


Samuel M. Smith, Vice President

Sam is responsible for Venture Management’s research, databases, and information systems. Based in southeast Michigan, Sam has 10 years of experience with General Motors and 15 years of accomplishments in the emergent Local Area Network industry in the U.S. and in Europe, contributing in both technical and sales management capacities. Sam is a recipient of the Marie Jacquard National Award from the Numerical Control Society and has provided expert testimony to the U.S. House of Representatives on network technology.

Sam brings a broad understanding of network-based information systems and corporate alliances to Venture Management, having extensive experience in manufacturing, medical, educational and R&D environments. Sam's experience has been gained in both early-stage, venture capital backed companies such as Chipcom Corporation and Whitetree Corporation and in major public corporations including Extreme Networks, Ameritech/SBC and TRW.

Sam received his BA degree from Davidson College and a MS degree in Information Science from Georgia Tech.


Matt Barton, Vice President

At Venture Management, Matt Barton is primarily focused on transactions involving companies in the aerospace, defense, transportation, and logistics industries. Matt joined Venture Management after twelve years of financial and operational experience in these industries. During that time, Matt designed and implemented expansion plans for US and foreign clients, restructured distressed companies in and out of bankruptcy, and evaluated buy-side and sell-side merger opportunities for senior management and investors.

With a diverse background that includes start-up enterprises and mature corporations, Matt excels at providing clients with a full view of strategic and financing options from operational launch to expansion, maturity, and restructuring.

Matt earned an MBA from London Business School, with a focus in finance. He completed a BA degree at the University of California, Santa Cruz, where he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. He speaks German and English fluently, and is the founding president of Eagle Scouts of Western Washington, a service and networking group for 20,000+ Eagle Scouts. He lives in Seattle.


Paul joined the Venture Management team after completion of the merger between Minuteman Ventures and Venture Management in 2008. He founded Minuteman Ventures in 2001, a firm focused on sell-side and buy-side M&A in the federal contracting sector. Paul has held several executive and management positions with technology, software and consulting firms since 1978, principally in federal contacting serving a range of civilian and defense agencies.

Paul currently is Senior Vice President, Corporate Development, of International Development Group LLC-IDG (www.internationaldevelopmentgroup.com), and also serves on its Board of Directors. IDG provides economic advisory services to emerging countries via contracts with the U.S. Agency for International Development and other U.S. agencies.

He previously was Executive Vice President, Operations and Finance, for Glevum Associates, which provides analytic and research data to government agencies operating in conflicted geographies, such as Afghanistan. Paul had also been Vice President, Chief Financial Officer, and Director of Corporate Planning, for UFA, Inc., which supplies simulators to train military and commercial air traffic controllers.

Paul also established and managed Corporate Development at AverStar, Inc., serving as Vice President during its growth from $120 million to $200 million. AverStar, acquired by Titan Systems in 2000, was a system integrator and IT services firm. Upon acquisition by AverStar, Paul became Chief Financial Officer and Vice President, Strategic Planning, for AverCom Corp., a Titan subsidiary. AverCom delivered content management, portals and other scalable web-based solutions.

Paul also managed Corporate Development for Pacer Infotec, Inc., a defense company providing engineering services and producing flight simulators and helicopter navigation systems. He began his career as a Director with the Smaller Business Association of New England (SBANE), a nationally focused policy group for growth companies. There, he helped to pass the landmark Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program in 1982. Additionally, Paul has served on several company and organization boards, including the Boston Chapters of the Association for Corporate Growth (ACG) and the National Investor Relations Institute (NIRI). He currently serves as President of the New England Chapter Board of the National Defense Industrial Association (NDIA), and is an active member of the Professional Services Council.

Paul earned his BS degree in accounting from Northeastern University, a MA degree in Communications from Boston University and undertook studies at the Graduate School of Business Administration at Northeastern.


Pete brings to the Venture Management Board of Advisors and to our clients more than 30 years of experience in financial management, including over 15 years with contractors serving federal government clients. His experience in the federal contracting arena has included C-level responsibility for finance, human resources and contracts. Pete has managed the proposal process for companies that have won some of the largest government contracts offered. Pete maintains a Top Secret clearance level

Prior to starting Cambier Consulting, Pete was Chief Financial Officer (CFO) at several early stage and midsize technology based companies and service providers to agencies of the federal government. At the government contractor ITS Corporation (ITS), he was a member of the management and ownership team that built ITS from a $5 million in revenue government contractor to over $80 million in revenues and sold to QinetiQ North America. He was responsible for all the financial and accounting functions at ITS, as well as mergers & acquisitions, information systems and contracts. Upon joining QinetiQ he became the CFO for their Information Technology Systems Group which had revenue of $400Mil.

Prior to his leadership roles at ITS and QinetiQ, Pete had successively increasing responsibilities with Burroughs Corporation, now Unisys, and with Vetco, Inc., where he was Controller of the $150 million in revenues Western Hemisphere, as well as serving as CFO of 2 other mid level companies.

Pete received his Master of Business Administration from the University of Southern California and a Bachelors of Arts in Economics from the University of California at Santa Barbara.