Blake Teipel


Blake is the chief executive officer of Essentium, Inc., where he is responsible for managing the company’s fast-growing business across the world. Essentium is pioneering multiple 3D printing technologies that remove the current limitations surrounding additive manufacturing, allowing factory floors everywhere to be transformed.

In his role as CEO, Blake’s strategy is focused on innovation in both materials and production platforms, disrupting traditional manufacturing processes by bringing strength and speed together, at scale, with a no-compromise material set. Blake’s team delivers industrial solutions for the world’s top manufacturers enabling them to shift the role of additive manufacturing from prototyping to full scale production. Under Blake’s leadership, Essentium raised $22.2M in Series A funding, one of the largest A-rounds in the history of additive manufacturing. Prior to his role at Essentium, Inc., he was co-founder and CTO at a predicate company, Essentium Materials, which was awarded the SME Innovation Grand Prize in 2016 for its unique electromagnetic welding technology, which is currently scaling.

In addition to co-founding Essentium Materials in 2013, Blake co-founded TriFusion Devices, a 3D printed medical device venture aimed at custom, high-strength applications in the biomedical and sporting goods industries. Since inception, TriFusion has printed and shipped more than 2,000 bespoke medical devices to clinicians across North America.

Prior to Essentium, Blake was a senior engineer at Caterpillar Global Work Tools and Services where he helped develop Hydraulic Hammers which were manufactured in Waco, TX and sold worldwide. Blake also had a short stint at John Deere Power Systems where he worked as an engine engineer with design responsibility for sub-systems for iT4 off-highway diesel engines.

Blake holds a Ph.D. in Materials Science and Engineering from Texas A&M University and a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Colorado State University. Blake holds several pending and awarded patents and has published numerous peer-reviewed journal articles. In his free time, he enjoys wood working, golf, and spending time with his family.


Elisa Teipel


Elisa Teipel is the chief technology officer of Essentium, Inc. Elisa is responsible for customer-centric innovation by leading cross-functional engineering teams for new products and services to digitally transform businesses and disrupt the traditional manufacturing market.

In her role as CTO, Elisa is focused on new technologies to enable complete and no comprise 3D printing solutions that remove the barriers of speed, strength, and scale to accelerate industrial scale additive manufacturing.

Elisa brings more than a decade of experience in materials innovation and has secured millions of dollars of funded research to advance materials development for the industry. As Essentium’s principal investigator (PI) for projects funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF), Elisa has successfully completed SBIR Phase II projects.

Prior to her current role, Elisa served as CDO and COO for Essentium, where she led operations alongside and technology research efforts. During this time, Elisa directed large scale projects with aerospace, consumer goods, and automotive OEMs and suppliers to ensure successful commercialization of materials and technology.

Elisa’s background not only includes material development and generating patent applications for new technologies using waste streams, her experience also extends to sustainable community development including working for the Earth Institute at Columbia University, as well as overseas with the offices of three former First Ladies.

Elisa holds a Ph.D. in Civil Engineering from CU Boulder where she studied engineering systems which transcend multi-disciplinary boundaries of manufacturing, entrepreneurship, commerce, civic systems, infrastructure, and development. Elisa also holds a masters with an emphasis in materials and manufacturing from Baylor University, and a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Colorado State University. Elisa received the Commercialization Rising Star Award, Research Valley Partnership, in 2015 and 1st place in the U.S. / Finalist Young Persons’ World Lecture Competition, Ins. of Materials Minerals and Mining in 2011.

Elisa Teipel

Will Chiang

Will Chiang is Chief Operating Officer at Essentium, Inc. In this role, Will is responsible for building frictionless global operations to deliver a seamless experience to Essentium’s customers. He leads Operations, IT, legal, and Supply Chain functions, integrating deeply with vendors on multiple continents while delivering exceptional results.

Will joined Essentium in 2017 and was previously Vice President of Global Supply Chain. He brings over 20 years of experience across consumer electronics and additive manufacturing (AM) industries to run advanced planning processes that ensure supply chain excellence for both customers and suppliers. Before joining Essentium, Will was Supply Chain Development Manager at Jabil, where he developed and executed global supply chain/sourcing strategies for Jabil’s AM business unit.

In his previous position as Program Manager at Panasonic Avionics Corporation, Will developed and maintained IFEC program plans to identify work scope, schedules, milestones, and functional program team members. As Senior Product Development Manager at Mophie, Will managed product development activities through NPI phases and led product launches of multiple development programs. He spent 15 years with Foxlink as a Mechanical Engineer before being promoted to Senior Project Manager.

Will holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of California.


Kelly Spivey

Kelly Spivey is the Interim Chief Financial officer of Essentium, Inc. Kelly is responsible to provide financial expertise and advice to the CEO and the Executive Board as well as to keep the Company’s management abreast of its financial status. She oversees the Accounting and Finance areas of the organization ensuring compliance with Generally Accepted Accounting principles (GAAP).

In her role as CFO, Kelly is focused on consistently analyzing the financial data and presenting financial reports accurately and promptly. She manages cash flow forecasting by working in partnership with various departments. Kelly is responsible to ensure policies and procedures are following appropriate GAAP standards and regulatory requirements. She develops plans to address areas of opportunity to maximize the Company’s financial health and stability, and she sets strategies and goals for the Finance department.

Kelly brings extensive leadership experience across a variety of industries. Kelly was Global Controller of CreateMe, a fashion and technology company, where she led all aspects of accounting and reporting across the United States, United Kingdom, Hong Kong, China, and Colombia. Additionally, Kelly has been the Head of Technical Reporting for Scottish American Capital, where she was responsible for overseeing the external audit process, developing tax strategy–which resulted in a 40% saving–and leading valuation and capital strategy projects. Other highlights of Kelly’s experience include leading the internal audit function for Cadbury Schweppes PLC for North and South America. Kelly has also led the Customer Service Function for Dr Pepper/Seven Up, which had nine teams and over 100 employees responsible for logistics and their revenue cycle from order to cash. Additionally, while at Dr Pepper/Seven Up she chartered and led a project to improve the effectiveness of a $200 million marketing process by implementing a feedback mechanism on the promotional activity. Kelly began her career in a Big 4 equivalent.


Ryan Vano

Ryan Vano is the vice president of filaments and logistics of Essentium, Inc. Ryan is responsible for developing and launching class-leading functional filaments for additive manufacturing applications, helping customers make the leap from prototyping to full-scale production.

In this role, Ryan created the first multi-layer thermoplastic filament for additive manufacturing and led the development and production of an entire portfolio of engineering grade materials. Ryan has helped to generate more than $3M in funded research activities which have resulted in the development and launch of multiple innovative products to fuel the additive production of strong, durable and stable parts with the best accuracy and repeatability of any 3D printing technology.

Prior to his current role, Ryan was head of manufacturing for Essentium where he designed, installed, and commissioned a new filament production line and launched a staggering 20 new products and implemented lean and 5S principles to reduce scrap by 100 percent in six months.

Ryan has nearly 10 years of experience building and working in technology start-ups in additive manufacturing, materials science, and automotive industries. He has extensive technical expertise in thermoplastic materials, extrusion, processing, lean production methods, product development, and plant engineering.

Ryan was previously a senior research and development engineer for Natural Composites Inc. where he was responsible for R&D and supply chain efforts for a U.S. $1.2M National Science Foundation (NSF) funded SBIR Phase I-IIB project. He also launched the company’s first fiber composites products in new innovative applications and developed mechanical and interfacial properties for nonwoven fiber composites with natural and recycled content.

Ryan holds a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Baylor University. He also holds a Technology Entrepreneurship Certificate from the Baylor Hankamer School of Business.

Kevin Holder


Kevin serves as the Vice President of Government Operations at Essentium, leveraging his background and expertise to support Essentium’s government initiatives and programs. With over seven years of dedicated service to the company and a track record that includes roles such as Chief of Staff and Senior Director of Government Programs, Kevin has consistently demonstrated his ability to bridge communication between top management and the executive team. His strategic insight, analytical skills, and operations management expertise have played a pivotal role in securing and managing government-funded contracts, ensuring financial stability, and driving the strategic vision for government initiatives. Kevin’s diverse skill set, including political intelligence and team motivation, uniquely positions him to lead the company’s government operations to new heights, making him an invaluable asset in his role.

Kevin holds a Ph.D. in Materials Science and Engineering from Texas A&M University and a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry from the same. Kevin holds several pending patents and has published numerous peer-reviewed journal articles. Beyond his professional endeavors, Kevin is a strong advocate for work-life balance. He enjoys spending quality time with family and friends, fostering a balanced and fulfilling life beyond his role at Essentium. His commitment to both personal and professional excellence is a testament to his well-rounded approach to leadership.

Kristian Oftebro

Kristian Oftebro is Vice President of Customer Success at Essentium. He is responsible for developing go-to-market strategies and programs that deliver exceptional customer experiences using Essentium’s ground-breaking high-speed, high-precision 3D printing systems and ensuring customer success, satisfaction, and retention.

Kristian joined Essentium in 2019 and was previously the Director of Quality Engineering. He brings over 25 years of experience across engineering and additive manufacturing (AM) industries. Before joining Essentium, Kristian was Sr Process Development Engineer at Hesse Mechatronics, Inc. Kristian held engineering positions at Howard C Fletcher and Kulicke & Soffa.

Kristian holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from California Polytechnic State University-San Luis Obispo.


Nirup Nagabandi


Nirup Nagabandi is the VP of Materials and Process Engineering at Essentium. He is responsible for all things related to materials and process development at Essentium. As VP of Materials Engineering and Process Engineering, Nirup has fueled Essentium’s growth by implementing an industry-leading quality program, charting new strategic partnerships in the USA and Europe, revenue diversification, process innovation, and business consolidation. Meanwhile, he continues to engage with all team members on technical problems daily to provide guidance and mentorship. Nirup also helps Essentium’s government business in writing proposals to executing them at the highest level possible with his team.

Nirup holds a Ph.D in Materials Engineering from Texas A&M and a Bachelors degree in Chemical Engineering from IIT, Madras, India. Nirup enjoys gardening, cooking, and spending time with family and friends in his free time. He is cheerful and always ready to strike up a conversation about work, life, and family. Nirup is a results-driven leader passionate about tackling complex technical, strategic, commercial, or operational challenges. His expertise spans various domains, and he is committed to bringing value to organizations by leveraging technology and innovation.

Luke Johnson


Luke is the VP of Systems Engineering at Essentium, Inc. Luke joined Essentium after earning his Ph.D. and has focused on process-oriented customer solutions while developing a deep technical understanding of machine systems and how they translate to effective processing of novel materials. He specializes in integration of machine and software solutions for Essentium’s High Speed Extrusion (HSE) technologies and has helped lead the deployment of Essentium’s HSE printers world-wide.

Luke holds a Ph.D in a Ph.D. in Materials Science and Engineering from Texas A&M University and a Bachelors degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Wyoming. His academic research focused on using machine learning to accelerate process development and alloy design for powder-based additive manufacturing.

Luke’s academic and professional experiences have helped foster the creation of consistent and engaging end-to-end user experiences that last entire product lifecycles. Luke carries these lessons with him every day as he executes his current responsibilities of providing technical oversight and strategic guidance for the Hardware, Software and Systems Engineering groups at Essentium.

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