PASADENA, CA--(Marketwired - Mar 3, 2017) - Innovate Pasadena (IP), a non-profit organization committed to promoting economic and cultural development in the greater Pasadena region, announced today that Tom Buel and Brandee Pierce have joined the organization as Director of Operations and Community Manager, respectively. These two staff positions report directly to the Board of Directors, supporting the volunteer efforts of some of Pasadena's most dedicated business leaders, creative entrepreneurs and engaged citizens.

Buel has more than 25 years of professional experience in management, marketing and development, including seven years at Pasadena-based catalyst and advanced materials company, Materia. A longtime volunteer with IP, in his role as Director of Operations, Buel will be responsible for daily operational needs, implementation of organizational policies and practices, event production, and providing support to the Board of Directors.

With a diverse background in technology, marketing and development, Pierce has utilized her expertise to benefit a large cross section of companies. Most recently, Pierce worked for leadership development firm Coro Southern California, and, before that, held a number of positions at University of Southern California. In her role as IP's Community Manager, Pierce will be responsible for community engagement, implementation of marketing strategies, and assisting in development efforts.

"What started as a small, grassroots effort led by passionate volunteers has grown into a meaningful and impactful organization, contributing to the City's economic and cultural livelihood," said Mike Giardello, co-founder and current President of Innovate Pasadena. "Hiring Tom and Brandee will greatly increase our organization's ability to serve the City we all love.

"Tom has been part of Innovate Pasadena since it's earliest days and the Board is thrilled to have a keen and trusted director of operations at the helm," Giardello continued. "In hiring Brandee, we've found someone with a fresh take on IP's mission who is ready to advance and amplify our efforts. Together, I believe Tom and Brandee are poised to strengthen Pasadena's reputation for innovation, technology and design."

Innovate Pasadena enters the New Year with an impressive slate of events and activities scheduled for 2017. Some of the organization's most recognized efforts include:

  • Tech Jobs -- From job fairs and resume workshops to networking socials and online search tools, IP provides companies looking for new talent and individuals ready for new professional opportunities with a slew of resources.
  • Idea to Innovation (i2i) -- Co-presented with Caltech, i2i fosters entrepreneurship by connecting Pasadena's innovation community with industry leaders to exchange ideas in an inspiring and welcoming environment.
  • Meet-up Creators -- IP proudly supports the efforts of individuals interested in organizing meet-ups around specific themes, including cybersecurity, healthcare innovation, user experience and more.
  • Friday Coffee Meet-up -- IP's first and largest meet-up community gathers together every week for a speaker series that highlights local innovation.
  • Connect Week -- A festival of independently organized talks, workshops, and social events produced by independent organizers under the IP banner and hosted in venues all across Pasadena. In 2016, IP welcomed more than 15,000 attendees to 70 events throughout the week.

For more information about the myriad ways Innovate Pasadena promotes economic and cultural development in the greater Pasadena region -- and how to get involved -- visit

About Innovate Pasadena
Innovate Pasadena (IP) is a community organization committed to advancing greater Pasadena as a center of technology and design innovation by promoting collaboration across business and education to attract companies, entrepreneurs, innovators and capital to the broader community. For more information, visit

Social Media
Facebook: /InnovatePasadena
Twitter: @innovatpasadena (note the missing "e")
Instagram: @innovatepasadena
Hashtags: #Pasadena #innovation #tech #design

Contact Information:

Vanessa Waite