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Leena Chitnis, MBA

Entrepreneur • Advisor San Francisco Bay Area, US

Founder, Previously Founder/CEO of PiezoTouch. MacGyver of lean startup strategy.

Founder, Previously Founder/CEO of PiezoTouch. MacGyver of lean startup strategy.

24 vouches

Primary Skillsets

  • Business Development
  • Enterprise Sales
  • Fundraising
  • Growth
  • Marketing
  • Operations
  • Product
  • UI/Design
I have an idea, but I'm open to other ideas

Primary Cofounder Skillsets

  • • Business Development
  • • Enterprise Sales
  • • Fundraising
  • • Growth
  • • Marketing
  • • Operations
  • • Product
  • • UI/Design

Involved In


Side Projects

Fulbright Scholar, Greece 2013


Marketing and Business Strategy/Communications Consultant Self 2010 - present
Content & Publication Manager NetApp April 2016 - present
Marketing & Business Strategy/Communications Consultant Self 2010 - present
Fulbright Fellow U.S. Department of State August 2012 - September 2013
Internal Events and Marketing Communications Specialist Blue Shield of California March 2008 - June 2009
Executive Communications Contractor Fox Broadcasting Company January 2006 - June 2007
Executive Communications Contractor Fox Interactive Media 2006 - 2007
Executive Communications Contractor Paramount Pictures 2006 - 2007
Development Coordinator Sony Pictures Entertainment June 2005 - December 2005
Foundations and Government Relations Grant Writer Public Broadcasting Service 2000 - 2003


Project Management Institute (PMI) 2013 - 2014
Syracuse University - Martin J. Whitman School of Management Dual Concentrations: Entrepreneurship & Marketing 2010 - 2012
University of Washington English, Emphasis on Creative Writing 1997 - 2000

Interested In

Joining an Early Team
Cofounder With
  • • Ad Sales
  • • Engineering
  • • Marketing
  • • Product
  • • UI/Design
Advisor With
  • • Email Marketing
  • • Growth hacking
  • • Viral marketing
  • • User Interface Design
Markets of Interest
  • • Advertising
  • • Commerce
  • • Consumer Electronics
  • • Data & Analytics
  • • Dating
  • • Enterprise Software
  • • Events
  • • Green
  • • Hardware
  • • Healthcare
  • • Local
  • • Media
  • • Mobile
  • • Music
  • • Payments
  • • Productivity Tools
  • • Small Businesses
  • • Smart Home
  • • Social Impact
  • • Transportation
  • • Travel
  • • Video
  • • peer-to-peer
  • • sustainable
  • • trading
  • • ecommerce

You Should Know About Me

Key Strengths

Sales • Marketing • Negotiation • Contract negotiation • Social Entrepreneurship • Business Development • Marketing Communications • UI/UX expertise • Haptic Technology

Key Accomplishments

I've raised large amounts of seed/angel financing both in-kind and cash, while simultaneously recruiting a highly impressive board (with general counsel and patent attorney for Best Buy as legal counsel) for a haptics company I founded during grad school. I still managed not to let go of a drop of equity. I currently work in Digital Strategy at PayPal and am being eyed by Google for a VP role in the same. I bring passion, a burning love of learning, a shameless/hardline ability to negotiate, beast-like work ethic, dogged persistence, and a can't stop/won't stop mentality when it comes to seeing a thing through. I can sell anything I believe in.

How I like to work with people As a Cofounder

As a hustler. I like to work on everything from designing to testing a product, all the way through to marketing, sales and fundraising. I can get anything from anyone extremely inexpensively and still retain clients as great friends (try doing that consistently)! I'm that person who is not afraid to ask the questions others hate to ask. I have no shame. I'm a solid presenter, as well, and have a driving, uncanny work ethic, but I know how to crack a joke, too. I am caring about the people I work with and make sure that everyone's needs are being met, while a deep dedication to customer relationship management also ranks as a huge priority. Above all, I believe passion, hard work, innovation, fearlessness and kindness go a long way towards the goal of acquiring success on a large scale.

Vouches Received

Vouches Given

Think Leena is awesome?
Vouch for them.

Stratos Kontopoulos
We worked together
I've known Leena for over a year now and she has shown almost all of the above traits. She is a very resourceful person, highly intelligent ... and communicative, but also very tenacious and motivated. She is the person you want to have in your team, no matter what your startup does!
Chris Hilberg
They're my advisor
Leena is a driven self-starter, and she remains laser-focused on her goals until they are achieved.
Hannah Scoville
They're my friends
Leena is committed to succeeding and will do whatever it takes. She has a gift for drawing people on to her team and "selling" them on her ... ideas. I can't imagine a more determined, persistent, and creatively resourceful entrepreneur.
Tom Kruczek
They're my mentor
Leena is a very talented and intellegent individual. She has the skill sets to be a successful entrepreneur, but what she has that makes her ... stand out is that she is driven and never quits until the task is done.
Eva Saro
They're my friends
Leena is one of the most passionate, driven and determined women I know. She's creative, resourceful, and most important trusted. I have see ... n Leena try and accomplish all that she's set her mind to.
Sandeep Ramachandran
We worked together
Great innovative thoughts with critical thinking and risk taking capability.
We worked together
I met Leena when she was pursuing her Piezotouch idea. What stuck out for me was her ability to identify an exciting technical idea (when sh ... e is not a tech major), her resourcefulness and her persuasion ability which showed in engaging engineering talent. She also has great communication skills which are important for any budding entrepreneur. She will be a great asset to any team or idea she engages with.
Ray Castle
They're my friends
Leena works well people, and is an excellent communicator. Moreover, once she has or is involved in a project she'll work at it relentlessly ... until all the objectives are met.
MaryAnn Monforte
They're my mentor
Absolutely..She Is Driven.
Kajal Ram
We worked together
Leena is an extremely intelligent person with great determination. She's personable, trust worthy and extremely hard working. She's always ... had excellent vision and ideas and finding the right cofounder is a natural next step. Leena will make an excellent entrepreneur and partner.
Preeti Kashyap - MBA
They're my friends
Leena has a lot of great ideas and is very business minded. She is helpful, resourceful, and a dedicated person. She has a great personality ... and very easy to work with. Leena is just a great person inside and out!
Aparna Chitnis Dandekar
They're my friends
I have known Leena all my life; after all, she is my sister (there was no drop-down option for this relationship in Question 1)! Leena is on ... e of the most tenacious people I have ever known. Coupled with her natural intelligence and business acumen, she has made a place for herself in the business world at a young age. She graduated summa cum laude with a 4.0 from Syracuse University's Whitman College, earning both the Alumni and the Academic Excellence Awards for the entire MBA program. She was awarded the $30,000 Panasci Prize, defeating 60 teams single-handedly, while also sweeping the Fetner Prize for Sustainable Enterprise. She was featured in Syracuse Woman Magazine, interviewed for Under 30 CEO, and featured in several other periodicals. Her latest achievement is winning the prestigious Fulbright Award in 2012.
Chris Hupp
They're my friends
She is incredibly diligent and never backs down from a challenge. I've seen her grow professionally, and I believe that she is ready to ente ... r the market based on her due diligence. Finally she is a leader that I would follow.
Tia Gehlhausen
They're my friends
Leena is extremely creative, driven and intelligent. She is almost always researching diverse markets, which inspire her ideas to develop he ... r own entrepreneurial endeavors. Leena has a keen sense about people, what they want and need, as well as what they will buy. She is highly analytical and well rounded in the sense that she not only studies people, but also numbers. She knows what drives markets and where she and her ideas fit into the big picture. Leena's engaging and unique entrepreneurial ideas spark people's attention and intrigue them.
Jon'Dell Delacruz
They're my friends
With every venture Leena seeks a meaningful purpose, has the vision to pursue it and builds a great foundation to execute that mission.
Fernette Hoag
They're my friends
Leena has amazing drive and is always setting new goals for herself!
Michael Bonitatis
They're my friends
She is motivated, driven, and a great communicator.
Jeffrey Eades
They're my advisor
She has the desire and skills of a person who take chances and creates reward. She has a very driven persona that has her look beyond a hur ... dle or setback.
Raynauld Cherry II
They're my school
She is a Fulbright scholar and also won our Business plan competition at Syracuse university . She has the determination and ability to do g ... reat things.
Clarence Vaughn III, MBA
They're my school
Leena is truly an entrepenuer at heart. She has an unmatched creativity regarding creation of a thought or idea that will impact the greater ... society. Her talents are immeasureable when it comes to having a dedicated passion and desire to succeed.
Dominic Davis
They're my friends
Cause she is hardworking, passionate and driven..
Kiana Charles
We worked together at ReelzChannel
I had the pleasure of meeting Leena several years ago and although we no longer work together I've had the pleasure of keeping her as a frie ... nd and an advisor. Not only is she more than capable of accomplishing whatever job or task that is presently at hand but she always stays several steps ahead with projects that help others and better the world that we live in. She is one of the most daring, tenacious, and caring people that I have ever encountered and I know that she will bring her certain special something to whatever she puts her hand to. Leena is definitely an asset.
Shaan Dasani
We worked together
Leena would be a great entrepreneur because she's creative and driven. She is a problem solver - she knows when she sees a good opportunity ... and goes after it. Mediocrity doesn't satisfy Leena, she's ambitious and is made to do big things!
Mir Haque
Tech Entrepreneur/Advisor/Business Developer. Wharton MBA
Smart and dedicated entrepreneur

Michael Bonitatis
They're my friends
Michael is one of the hardest working people I know. I have personally seen him work toward his lofty goals with my own eyes. Mike is no str ... anger to working late into the night, while waking up at a dedicated 5-6 am every morning to start a new day with more enthusiasm than the last! Michael's current trajectory is meteoric and you would be amiss not to have him be a part of this site. Any founder would be lucky to have Michael as a co-founder. - Leena Chitnis

Eric Sornoso
We worked together  •  Writer, Search Engine Journal and Writer, Social Media Examiner. University of California, Santa Barbara grad.
Eric is one of those exciting, young, entrepreneurs you always read about in trade magazines, who has advised me well with regard to my own ... business. Anyone who can keep up with Eric's fast-paced energy and level of insight would ultimately profit - both financially and from the perspective of immense learning.

Mir Haque
Tech Entrepreneur/Advisor/Business Developer. Wharton MBA
Mir has taken two revolutionary products from conception to realization, at the same time. There isn't anything he can't do!