About Bessel

Our origin

by Chris Danek

Bessel's origin is product lifecycle support for medical device and diagnostic clients. This practice is built on over 20 years of experience designing and developing medical devices, with over 5 years as a standalone service provider of full service support of the entire product lifecycle -- from a clean sheet of paper through commercial release.

Our clients range from early stage startups to mature corporations (Fortune 50). We combine human centered design and scrum in our approach to work, and focus on results and on improving the capabilities of our clients' teams.

Volunteer work as a mentor to startups reminded me of my love of teaching. It was a natural step from putting the patient first as a medical device developer to putting the student first as a teacher. In working to help transform students into excellent team members, I created the core of the Origin program.

My co-founder, Carolyn Danek, inspired the start of Bessel. We saw that Human Centered Design and the entire Origin program succeeds at providing foundational skills and habits for success.


The Bessel Origin program is a transformational experience - from the mindsets and methods of Human Centered Design, to the empirically optimized team performance of Scrum, to the invaluable benefits of improved communication.  

It is axiomatic that the highest performing teams are diverse and work inclusively to deliver superior results. It is also our observation that results are more related to effort, intention, and persistence than to individual abilities or advantages. For these reasons, we reserve a portion of program fees to provide financial support to deserving people. We are also actively pursuing partnerships with non-profits to further expand the reach of our program, and we continue to make direct contributions of time and resources to the community at large in pursuit of Purpose-Driven Impact. 

Trained as an architect, Carolyn is professionally versed in human centered design. Her deep-rooted empathy sparked the creation of Bessel. I'm fortunate to be her co-founder.

- Chris 

Our Bessel Origin Team
We share a passion to help people & teams grow and succeed
Chris Danek, PHD, MBA

Chris is an entrepreneur and teacher, experienced at building and leading teams to develop innovative solutions. He's proud to have led the development of two clinically and commercially successful medical technologies. Design thinking and agile development are in his DNA. Chris developed the Bessel Origin program, and refined it over three academic years in the university setting.

Shauna Barker, MBA, CPA

Shauna is a highly regarded finance professional and has served as CFO at companies of varied sizes, stages, and domains. She is an experienced advisor and strategic business partner to startup CEOs through her financial consulting firm. Shauna is a great mentor and entrepreneur. Shauna's clients and teammates value her friendly approach to direct feedback. 

Screen Shot 2019-12-15 at 12.38.01 AM.pn
Damian Rouson, PHD

Damian is a noted expert in scientific computing and an experienced educator. He co-authored the textbook Scientific Software Design: The Object-Oriented Way (Cambridge University Press, 2011) and has been contracted to teach related courses at supercomputer centers and universities in the U.S. and Europe. He is the Founder and President of the Sourcery Institute, a California public-benefit nonprofit corporation engaged in research, education, and consulting in computational science, engineering and mathematics .

Nikki Blacksmith, PHD

Dr. Nikki Blacksmith is a scientist-practitioner of industrial-organizational psychology. She is Co-Founder and CEO of Blackhawke Behaviour Science, the world's leading expert in predicting and enhancing entrepreneur and startup team performance. Widely quoted in the news media and with over 60 published scientific papers, Nikki is known for her expertise and research on cognitive bias in decision-making, personality, intelligence, and organizational culture. She currently serves as Committee Chair for the Society for Industrial-Organizational Psychology, is a Senior Fellow at the U.S. Army Research Institute, and an adjunct faculty member at American University.  

Need more details? Contact us

We are here to assist. Contact us by email or via our Social Media channels.