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Staff Bios

Laura Stein

Laura Stein

Interim President/COO

Laura joined the IICorp in 2012, bringing more than 10 years of economic development experience at the federal, state, and local government level. Laura previously served as an economic development representative with the Department of Commerce – Economic Development Administration and as business finance team leader with the Iowa Economic Development Authority. As Vice President, Laura is responsible for operations, contract management, grant writing, and administration, in addition to working to develop innovative programs and initiatives.

Laura earned a B.A. in Political Science from Ohio State University and her M.B.A. from Drake University. Laura also is a U.S. Navy veteran who served four years of active duty as an aviation structural mechanic in an F-14 Tomcat squadron.

To contact Laura: telephone 515.421.4054 or email

Jordan Hobfoll

Statewide SBIR/STTR Program Coordinator

Jordan Hobfoll joined the IICorp in April of 2015 as Statewide SBIR/STTR Program Coordinator. Jordan has start-up experience as the founder and CEO of Energy Simply, a concierge retail electricity management service targeting Illinois and Texas. He also worked as a consultant for McKinsey and Company in Houston, where he focused on strategy and operations for energy, manufacturing, and clean technology companies.

As state coordinator, Jordan works to advance SBIR/STTR activities in Iowa to help increase the number of federal grants to companies in the state. He works closely with businesses, research and educational institutions, federal program managers, and statewide service providers to accelerate projects with significant commercial potential.

A graduate of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign College of Business, Jordan received his M.B.A. from the University of Texas at Austin.

To contact Jordan: telephone 515.421.4038 or email

Jenica Johnson

Statewide Innovation Portfolio Manager

Jenica joined the IICorp in 2016 as the Statewide Innovation Portfolio Manager. Her role will be to implement and administer the system to monitor progress and success of funded Innovation Portfolio Companies.

Jenica has more than 6 years of experience working in the start-up and economic development sectors. She previously worked for VentureNet Iowa, where she assisted with the evaluation of companies’ overall business models in advisory review panels. Jenica also is an attorney and previously served as general counsel for New Tech Ceramics, Inc.

Jenica earned her undergraduate degree in International Business and Business Law from Drake University, received her Juris Doctorate with Honors from Drake University Law School, and is a member of the Iowa Bar.

To contact Jenica: telephone 515.421.4056 or email

Kayla Burkett

Program Manager

Kayla Burkett joined the IICorp in October 2016. She previously was a Sales Support Specialist for Principal Financial Group, supporting sales offices throughout portions of the United States. Prior to that, she was a Center Support Analyst with CenturyLink.

As IICorp’s Program Manager, Kayla plays a key role organizing, implementing projects, and communicating with team and board members. Kayla’s responsibilities include coordinating and attending board and committee meetings, recording minutes, managing meeting calendars, and distributing correspondence.

Kayla earned a B.A. in Marketing from Iowa State University.

To contact Kayla: telephone 515.421.4055 or email

Anne Price

Program Coordinator

Anne Price joined IICorp in November 2017 as Program Coordinator.  She previously was a nanny for a private family and facilitated Venture School with the University of Iowa.  At IICorp Anne will administer the SBIR/STTR peer-to-peer mentoring program.  Anne is interested in the way start-ups think and enjoys cultivating relationships.

Anne earned a B.A. in Communication Studies, Certificate in Entrepreneurial Management, and Museum Studies Certificate from the University of Iowa.