Grad Slam 2024 Judges

Grad Slam is a systemwide competition that showcases and awards the best three-minute research presentations by graduate scholars. This competition not only highlights the excellence, importance and relevance of UCI graduate scholars and their research, but it is also designed to increase graduate students’ communication skills and their capacity to effectively present their work with poise and confidence. It is an opportunity to share accomplishments with the campus, friends of UCI, the local community, and the broader public. This year’s edition of Grad Slam will be virtual, from the semifinals all the way through UC Systemwide Finals. See below to meet the judges of the 2024 UCI Grad Slam, our 10th Anniversary Edition!

Pamina Barkow

Pamina Barkow is the CEO and co-founder of South Star Medical Partners and PI Medical Partners, a medical conglomerate in the Neuroscience space. Previously, she was owner and CEO of Orange County Panagment before she sold and exited in 2021. Born in Chillan, Chile, Pamina holds three masters degrees including a Masters in Business Administration (MBA) and Masters in Clinical Nutritionist (CNC), as well as four certifications in Organizational Behavior and Jungian Typology from the Linda Barnes Institute.

In addition to being a former adjunct faculty member for the UCI Integrative Medicine Department for six years, Pamina is the Chair for the Dean’s Advisory Board at the Business School of University of CA, Irvine. Pamina serves as part of the Steering Committee for UCI-OC Alliance as well as the UCI Special Initiative for Diabetes. Ms. Barkow is also the former chair for the Business School’s Dean’s Advisory Board as well as the Vice-Chair for the Beall Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation. She is a frequent featured speaker on the topics of entrepreneurship, healthcare, nutrition, business and leadership. She was nominated as Businesswoman of the Year (2021) by the Orange County Business Journal. In 2023 she was named a Trustee of the University of CA, Irvine.

Anderee Berengian

Anderee Berengian is CEO at Cie Digital Labs and Managing Partner at RezVen. He is a serial entrepreneur and board member. Cie Digital Labs (CDL) is a hybrid interactive development firm and technology startup studio. CDL creates leading-edge digital solutions, serves as an innovation lab for a variety of prominent global brands, and acts as a platform to develop ideas and turn them into new technology ventures.

Cie Digital Labs blends Silicon Valley know-how, startup dynamism and speed with the business maturity of serial entrepreneurs, seasoned venture capitalists, and Fortune 500 executives. This combination gives CDL a deep understanding of how to apply the latest technology to solve strategic and operational business challenges. CDL’s unique hybrid model also enables the company to identify new opportunities that CDL’s startup studio incubates, develops, and accelerates into new products and companies. Through his roles at CEI and Rezven, Berengian supports and mentors a wide variety of startup entrepreneurs as well as UCI students.

He earned his BS in Biochemists from UCLA, M.A. in Business from USC, and completed ABD for his Ph.D. in Biophysics at UCLA before recognizing his true passion as an entrepreneur.

Berengian gives back by serving as a board member for nonprofits Discovery Cube of Orange County and as a Board Member for Human Options, Inc. as well as for profit companies PETCO Animal Supplies, Vody, and Titan School Solutions, amongst others.


Joseph Gatto

General Manager The Pacific Club Newport Beach. Bio coming soon.

John Huang​ Photo

John Huang

John Huang is an Associate Director and Site Executive at Raytheon Technologies located in Fullerton, CA.  John’s domain expertise range from large scale DoD development programs to commercial startup in providing C5I solutions, GPS Navigation Landing Systems, Radar mission applications and Identify Management products.  John is experienced in full life cycle engineering development from safety critical, embedded, and hard real time systems to open data centric applications.  He held position in Software Program Manager, Proposal Lead, Software Technical Director and System Integration Lead.

John holds a B. S. in Information and Computer Science from University of California, Irvine.  His professional certifications include Software Architect Certification, System Engineering Technical Development Program and Software Program Management.

Jim Meacham​ Photo

Jim Meacham

Jim Meacham is a founding principal of Altura, where he is responsible for managing a diverse team that provides services for some of the world’s most energy efficient and iconic real estate projects. Meacham has helped pioneer the application of data analytics to the built environment to ensure energy efficiency projects deliver meaningful and lasting results. 

Meacham is a proud Anteater and received his M.S. in Mechanical Engineering from UC Irvine in 2005, where he was a graduate researcher at the National Fuel Cell Research Center.  Prior to attending UCI, Jim worked in industrial automation and was a high school math teacher. Jim lives with his wife (also an Anteater!) and two sons in Corona del Mar and enjoys cooking, camping, hiking, running, mountain biking, skiing and all of California’s natural beauty.