Dr. Robert Wagstaff – "Dr. Bob" – is founder and chairman of Orabrush, and inventor of the Orabrush tongue cleaner. A biochemist and nutritionist by education and training, he was serving as a mission president for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (i.e. the Mormons) in the Philippines when he received complaints about the bad breath of some of his missionaries. Realizing that the effects of bad breath were not confined to his missionaries (or those with whom they interacted), Dr. Bob used his scientific bona fides and know-how to root out the problem at its source – the tongue!
His study of tongue scrapers, toothbrushes and other oral hygiene products on the market showed that none of them were capable of properly removing the bacteria that was the primary cause of bad breath, so Dr. Bob devised a tongue brush with individual soft, flexible, pointed bristles and scraper necessary to reach and remove the offending bacteria.
The ultimate result was the creation of the most innovative and effective tongue cleaner ever created – the Orabrush tongue cleaner. The global Orabrush phenomenon is a tribute to Dr. Bob’s ingenuity and persistence – it was his idea to seek out the contributions of the 20-something Millennials who developed the marketing campaign that catapulted Orabrush to international online superstardom.
Dr. Bob holds a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree in poultry nutrition from Utah State University and a PhD in biochemistry and nutrition from Washington State University. He was granted a U.S. patent (#6792642) as well as FDA approval (#3005936367) for the Orabrush and has also received a worldwide registered trademark for the name Orabrush. Dr. Bob continues to contribute to the growth of Orabrush by working on new companion Orabrush products that will be introduced to the market in the future.
Orabrush’s chief executive brings 23 successful years of experience in sales, marketing and general management at Procter & Gamble both in the U.S.A and abroad. Jeff’s P&G experience spans several different product sectors including consumer-packaged goods, pharmaceuticals and beauty businesses in five countries in North America and Europe (USA, Canada, Germany, Czech Republic and Slovakia).
Jeff’s experiences span from opening developing markets in Eastern Europe in the early nineties to building P&G’s global business in the Pharmaceutical industry in Germany, Canada and in the United States. In his final assignment, Jeff led the integration of the Germany based Wella haircare company into P&G, creating a new, global Salon Professional Hair company in the Beauty sector.
Jeff brings this deep expertise to the start-up world at Orabrush Inc., a new media powered, ecommerce CPG brand builder. Orabrush’s “Reverse Marketing Model” leverages social media marketing platforms such as YouTube and Facebook to commercialize innovative products. Touted as a disruptive new model for creating awareness and purchase both on and offline for consumer products, the model has been recognized by the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, USA Today, Mashable, TechCrunch and ABC’s Nightline.
In addition to his active business leadership, Jeff is working to influence positive change in business and education. At the University of Utah’s David Eccles School of Business, he serves as adjunct professor and cultivates innovative hands-on curriculum and programs. As an advisor at Ernst & Young, he develops the company’s business advisory practice with top worldwide CPG clients.
Jeff serves as a board member at a number of organizations, including the Hale Centre Theatre, delivering world-class live theatre; and Munich, Germany-based AMSilk, a leader in high performance materials including the industrial production of spider silk. He is also a member of the P&G Alumni Network Speaker’s Bureau.
Jeff earned a B.S. in Marketing and a B.A. in German from the University of Utah. He is married, has 4 children and resides in Salt Lake City, Utah.
Neal Harmon brings a multi-faceted set of skills and expertise to Orabrush. At the ripe young age of 11, Neal nurtured the vision of a million-dollar dairy business that would support his family and finance his lifelong career. He purchased his first cow with money he earned hoeing beets. Though the seven-figure business never materialized, Neal ultimately built his empire to nine cows before selling to a neighbor - acquiring invaluable perspective and an insatiable taste for entrepreneurship in the process.
Neal is proficient in 10 computer programming languages and is adept in a host of useful applications geared to strategic online growth. He has put his broad expertise to work co-designing and engineering the company’s technical social media marketing strategy, optimizing the campaign for profitability. Neal also launched the Orabrush e-commerce platform; wrote the company's business plan and led a growth capital financing round; led the creation of the Orabrush advisory team; and helped establish the company's sales presence in the UK, Japan and other regions in Asia. Prior to his Orabrush adventure, Neal developed a trucking logistics dashboard that connects shippers and private fleets; built and enhanced multiple commercial storefront websites; and launched two successful collaborations with his brother Jeffrey - the Status King Facebook sales platform and MemoryPress, a patented collaborative online publishing system. Neal has received two degrees, both from Brigham Young University: a bachelor's cum laude and a master's in instructional psychology and technology.
Mike Levinthal brings a wealth of venture capital experience and keen entrepreneurial insight to the Orabrush board of directors. During his 25 years in the investment arena, Mike has demonstrated a strong ability to recognize and help build compelling companies. During his 20 years with the Mayfield Fund, he helped drive the growth of such portfolio companies as Citrix, Concur Technologies, Heartstream, Pure Software and WebMethods.
After relocating to Utah full time in 2004, Mike has been involved in a number of successful Utah-based companies where He has served as an investor or board member in such companies as: Altiris (public, acquired by Symantec), Omniture (public, acquired by Adobe), Skullcandy, Alliance Health, Applabs, 3point5, Matchbin, High West Distillery, Axlscloset, Domain Surgical, Pinger and Zinch.
Mike holds an MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business. He also received both his MS and BS degrees in engineering from Stanford University. He has served as an advisory board member to the Stanford Technology Venture Program and established the Mayfield Fellows program at Stanford University and University of California at Berkeley. Mike is a patent holder (5,593,426) of Defibrillator System Using Multiple External Defibrillators and a Communications Network. He is also involved as a board member in a number of non profit organizations including ReSurge International (formerly Interplast), the Leonardo Museum. He also played an instrumental part in establishing the Entrepreneurial Circle Program at Rowland Hall School.
Andy Whitman is a successful consumer products executive and investor who melds the experience of a Fortune 100 leader with the passion and resourcefulness of an entrepreneur. After a successful career with General Foods and Kraft Foods and recognizing that nurturing smaller businesses to achieve rapid growth was his passion, he founded a predecessor to 2x Consumer Products Growth Partners in 2001 to invest in and help operate small- and mid-sized consumer products companies.
Andy began his career managing icons like Kool-Aid and Tang. After years of delivering results on big brands, he jumped at the opportunity to run small, autonomous businesses within Kraft in a shirtsleeves environment. With unusually broad operating experience that included dedicated plants and/or sales forces but only a fraction of usual resources per dollar of revenue, he quickly proved his strengths as a collaborative, hands-on business builder. Taking charge of brands as small as $10 million that Kraft had been unable to grow or run profitably, Andy's entrepreneurial leadership produced outstanding results.
Andy serves as a member of the board of directors or observer of gDiapers, Tasty Bite and Orabrush and sits on the advisory board of The Nibble. He currently or previously assisted pro bono by serving as a board member for the Jewish United Federation Foods & Hospitality Trade Sector, Marketing Executives Network Group (MENG), Venture Board of the Women's Self-Employment Project and White Plains Child Day Care Association, a Head Start agency.
Andy received a B.B.A. from the University of Wisconsin and an M.B.A. from Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management. He is an outdoor adventure traveler, an active skier, an avid college basketball fan, a Culinary Institute of America-trained cooking enthusiast and a devoted Parrothead - as a result of traveling early in his career with singer Jimmy Buffett while leading the national introduction meetings for Corona Light, now the #1 imported light beer.
Shekhar Mitra, Ph.D., brings more than 25 years of deep experience in numerous global leadership roles as a Procter & Gamble executive to Orabrush's Board of Directors. A renowned global innovation leader, Shekhar has a proven track record of creating breakthrough consumer product innovations and global capabilities in the health, hygiene, beauty and grooming industries. Prior to joining Orabrush, Inc., Shekhar served as Senior Vice President of Corporate Research & Development, Global Salon Professional and Global Prestige for P&G. He was also a member of P&G's Global Leadership Council and a part of a 17-member Top Innovation Team for the company to create renewed innovation strategies and a pipeline of ideas for new business development.
Throughout Shekhar's career he has led the creation and development of technology platforms and innovation strategies that have resulted in well-known consumer products like Crest Whitestrips, Crest China, Crest Prohealth, Aleve Analgesic, Prilosec, Gillette and Old Spice Clinical Strength, and Metamucil (cholesterol lowering) to name a few. Several of these, including Crest Whitening Expressions, Whitestrips, Olay Regenerist, Prilosec, and Secret Clinical Strength, were named among the top ten consumer product innovations in the year in which they were released.
Shekhar has led the global innovation capability growth for P&G over the last decade with the start-up of Beijing, Bangalore, Rio and Africa innovation hubs. He has been awarded over 50 patents to date with 15 more on file in various fields and is an invited speaker on topics ranging from game-changing innovation approaches and organization development. In 2010, he was awarded the prestigious Ellis Island Medal of Honor recognized by the U.S. Congress and listed in the Congressional Record for his contributions to improving lives via innovation leadership and community service.
Before joining P&G in 1984 as a staff scientist, Shekhar received his undergraduate degree in Biophysical Chemistry from the Indian Institute of Technology; his MS and Ph.D. degrees in Life Sciences from Columbia University in New York; and was a Jane Coffin Research Fellow at Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut. Shekhar also currently serves as Premium Consulting Partner at YourEncore, Inc. and President of Innopreneur LLC. He also is a member of the Advisory Board for Vyome Biosciences and Phoenix Biometrics.