The Prana Team
Management Team bios can be found in Prana Capital Group's Form ADV II or Phoenix Capital Fund's Private Placement Memorandum, both can be found inside the Fund Portal.
Board of Advisors
Jack R. Selby
Managing Director, Thiel capital
John R. Selby (Jack) is a technology, finance and independent film entrepreneur. His current primary role is as Managing Director at Peter Thiel’s family office, Thiel Capital, in San Francisco, CA.
As a “PayPal Mafia” member, Jack co-founded, along with Peter, Clarium Capital Management, a macro hedge fund after selling PayPal to EBay in October 2002. At PayPal, Jack joined as an original employee and later served as a Corporate Officer/Senior Vice President, overseeing the company’s international and corporate operations. His prior experience also includes a Vice President position at GFTA Analytics GmbH, a Düsseldorfbased foreign exchange trading and financial consulting company.
As an active technology investor and advisor, Jack is involved with companies such as SpaceX, Affirm, Blend, FreedomPay, Q Bio, Orphidia, Conversion Capital, POPSUGAR, and many others.
As an independent producer, Jack’s film credits include Freeheld, Bernie and Act of Valor as well documentaries Fastball and Comic-Con Episode IV: A Fan's Hope.
Jack received a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from Hamilton College and currently serves on its Board of Trustees and as a member of the Investment Committee for the college’s endowment. Jack’s other philanthropic activities include member of the Board of Directors of the San Francisco Film Society, Tribute Committee Member of the Navy SEALs Foundation, co-founder and member of the Board of Directors for Wyoming Governor Matt Mead’s Global Technology Partnership as well as Co-Host/Founder of the Arizona Technology Innovation Summit with Governor Doug Ducey.
Joanne Stern, PhD
Family Office Consultant, Bonner & Partners
As a family wealth preservation consultant, Dr. Joanne Stern helps uncover the difficult and often deeply embedded relationship issues that can tear families apart and destroy harmony, happiness and sustained financial wealth. With over thirty years of experience in advising individuals, couples and families, she is dedicated to helping families expand their capabilities in family decision-making, family governance, and relationships around money and wealth. Joanne collaborates with clients, representatives of their family businesses, and their advisors to establish appropriate educational programs and governance structures that will prepare families to steward their wealth for generations to come. She works with families to enhance family unity and to improve all aspects of the family’s capital—financial, human, social, intellectual and spiritual. She helps them design a legacy that includes wealth, wisdom and giving.
Dr. Stern is a Strategic Partner in Family Relations with Bonner & Partners Family Office and presents regularly at their conferences as well as writing for their monthly online publication. She is on the board of Mountain West Family Office Forum and is also a member of Purposeful Planning Institute.Joanne has had a private psychotherapy practice and has taught college-level parenting courses. She has consulted with families, businesses and non-profits nationally and internationally and has helped career women capitalize on their leadership skills. A frequent keynote speaker, presenter and workshop leader, Joanne has been a guest expert on more than 200 TV and radio shows and has contributed to various newspapers, magazines and online media.
Joanne holds a bachelor’s and master’s from Northwestern University, a double master’s in counseling psychology and theology from Fuller Theological Seminary, and a PhD in human and organizational systems from Fielding Graduate University. She is the author of two books, High Performance Families: PreservingWealth and Happiness for GenerationsandParenting Is a Contact Sport: 8 Ways to Stay Connected to Your Kids for Life.
Larry Edward Penley, PhD
Former Dean, W. P. Carey School of Business, Arizona State University
Larry Edward Penley, Ph.D., is President of Penley Consulting. The firm specializes in management consulting for business and small, private colleges and universities. Dr. Penley primarily advises CEOs and board chairs.
Dr. Penley was appointed as Regent for the Arizona Board of Regents in October 2015 by Governor Doug Ducey. He is Chairman-elect of the Board. He brings to the position his business experience and his leadership in higher education. He served as President of the Thunderbird School of Global Management. He worked closely with the School’s board on the M&A process that led to a financial, market and regulatory success. Formerly he was President of Colorado State University (CSU) and Chancellor of the CSU System. He also was Dean of the W. P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University where he held a chaired Professorship. He is a Latin Americanist who was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship in Mexico.
Dr. Penley is a recognized scholar in the field of management. His research focuses on engagement, organizational communication and careers. In addition to his USA positions, he has held academic positions in Venezuela and Mexico. He has developed new educational programs through partnerships in China and Mexico. He has lectured in Europe, Asia, and Latin America.
An experienced board member, Dr. Penley currently serves on the Arizona Board of Regents and the board of Glion Institute of Higher Education (Switzerland). Among earlier boards were Wells Fargo Credit Card Company, Adaptive Curriculum, Mountain States Employers Council, the Greater Phoenix Economic Council (GPEC), ESC Toulouse (France), AACSB International (Chairman) and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory. He remains committed to the Arizona community - as Lector in his parish, St. Mary’s Basilica, board member of the St. Mary’s Basilica Patronato and Senior Fellow at the Center for the Future of Arizona. He has a history of past board service in Arizona, including Dignity Health Foundation – East Valley and INROADS Arizona. He received certification from UCLA’s board member training program.
Among other recognitions, Dr. Penley received the Frank C. Carr Award from INROADS Arizona, and he was awarded the Robert Herberger Arizona Heritage Chair at Arizona State University,theGreater Phoenix Economic Council Distinguished Service Award, and Vigil Honor from the Boy Scouts of America. He is an Eagle Scout.
He received his doctorate in management from the University of Georgia; his bachelor’s and master’s degrees are from Wake Forest University. He is Arizona State University Professor Emeritus. He and his wife, Yolanda Sanchez Penley, have two adult children and three grandchildren. They first moved to the State of Arizona almost 35 years ago. Dr. Penley is a U.S. citizen who was born in the State of Virginia and grew up in the State of Tennessee.
W. Whipple Neely, PHD
Principal Data Scientist, Salesforce
W. Whipple Neely is a data science professional with broad experience in both industry and research. His background bridges the underlying science of statistics and machine learning, and the business and engineering practicalities of applying analytics to real world problems. A key asset to his work is the fact that he holds two doctorates (Ph.D in Statistics, University of Wisconsin 2009; Ph.D in Mathematics, University of Washington 1994). In addition to his work in data science, He has spent many years as a software developer, project manager, and group director.
Neely's scientific background gives him the ability to apply the broad range of modern statistical and machine learning techniques towards solving the real world problems. His background in engineering and management mean that he understands the mission critical importance of providing immediate, practical and usable solutions to business needs.