Staff & Faculty

Venture Center

Meet the Team

Bud Rockhill

Acting Director, Beck Venture Center


Bud has been involved in Mines Entrepreneurship and Innovation since 2016, starting by leading business model workshops for students competing in industry-sponsored innovation challenges. At the Beck Venture Center, he works with founders to coordinate support from mentors, advisors, and fractional executives, many of whom are Mines alumni. He helps build partnerships with other players in the startup community, including government, corporations, industry associations, and investors.

Previously Bud has been the CEO/President or owner of four companies, three of which were sold to outside investor groups. His track record for managing growing enterprises has been profiled in several case studies used in the MBA program at both Stanford and Harvard, where he earned his MBA following an undergraduate degree at Lehigh. Bud is also the Managing Partner of the Traxion Venture Network in Golden that has provided more than 70 companies, several of which were led by Mines alumni, with education, advisor support, and access to capital.

Kelly Pickering

West Gate Program Manager


Kelly is a Colorado School of Mines alumni ’21, where he studied Advanced Manufacturing and Finite Element Analysis. Kelly’s focus was primarily on design for additive manufacturing and entrepreneurial studies. He brings his 17+ years of industry experience in brand and product development of user-centric design solutions that merge user needs, project objectives, and stakeholder inputs.

As a design engineer, meeting and exceeding the stakeholder visions, user needs, and project objectives is the primary objective. Applying the scientific method to the design process means utilizing various design and analytical techniques to distill the problems within a given assignment. Identifying, defining, and prioritizing the obstructions specific to a sub-optimal User Experience allows a design engineer to craft the ideal user-based solution. A design engineer follows the data to define the stakeholder’s objectives, and market problem to allow a design engineer to build the solution. 

BFA in Graphic Design, University of Northern Colorado
MS Advanced Manufacturing and Professional Certification in Finite Element Analysis

Entrepreneur in Residence team

Jim Greiner

Entrepreneur in Residence


Jim has been CEO, President, or COO of five startups, scaleups, or turnaround companies over the last 17 years. He has previously been a startup founder as well as served as an advisor, mentor, and investor for other startups. His industry experience includes healthcare, telecom, Internet, location-based services, digital advertising, mobile apps, consumer healthtech, tourism, and airlines/aviation. His functional experience includes product management, strategic branding and marketing, marcom/communications/PR, business development, and leadership. Jim holds a BS in Mechanical Engineering from Syracuse University and an MBA in Innovation and Entrepreneurship from the University of Colorado Boulder Leeds School of Business.

Rodney Marcy

Entrepreneur in Residence


With over 30 years of leadership experience in sales, marketing, and business development, Rodney’s experience includes both consumer products and medical devices. He has held commercial roles in multinational corporations, such as Procter & Gamble, Johnson & Johnson, and Covidien, LLC. Most notably, Rodney led the launch of minimally invasive surgery for women’s healthcare and surgical products with a combined market valuation exceeding $3.8 billion today. He also has held senior leadership positions at four venture-backed, start-up companies with two successful exits exceeding $500 million in valuation. As an officer in these companies, he played a key role in strategic planning, go-to-market planning and execution, market development, fundraising, and exit strategy. He completed the Johnson & Johnson Advanced Management Program at Northwestern University and undergraduate studies in marketing at Washington State University.

Jackie Haney

Entrepreneur in Residence


Jackie has over 20 years of experience in technical and leadership roles in upstream operations, asset management, and acquisition and divestiture valuations. She began her career with ExxonMobil and later started her own oil and gas company in 2011 following positions at Shell and Venoco. She currently is the CEO, Managing Partner at UnionRock Partners. Jackie graduated from Mines in 2001 and currently serves as co-chair of the President’s Council. 

James Taylor

Entrepreneur in Residence


James Taylor is the Founder of Analytical Data Systems, a SaaS, Data Engineering, and AI/ML technology solutions provider.  Before that, he successfully exited Symbiotic Engineering (acquired by ICF), a quantitative AI data analytics platform provider that optimizes energy consumption across large areas of the United States. He has spent 20 years building and scaling technology companies across the entire delivery lifecycle with experience in FinTech, MarTech, Energy, Scientific, and Government industries. James is a long-standing resident of Golden, CO, where he lives with his wife and four children, two current students at Mines. He enjoys inventing, hiking, and playing acoustic guitar in the Golden area in his spare time.

Contact Us

Mines Venture Center

1600 Jackson St., Golden, CO 80401