Who We Are

Abilitech™ Medical, Inc. is developing a suite of assistive devices, that will impact three important patient needs:

  • Physical - completion of many activities of daily living that provide users with greater independence.

  • Social/Emotional - Increase the ability to participate and engage in family or community activities that foster important social and emotional connections and restore a sense of independence.

  • Economic - Increased independence decreases the reliance on a Personal Care Attendant, in some cases allows a patient to return to or stay in the workforce, and/or remain in an independent living situation longer.

Abilitech’s product portfolio will include a shoulder and elbow assist device (Abilitech™ Assist), a powered handgrip device (AbilitechGrip) and a fully robotic, voice-controlled arm and hand assist device (Abilitech APEX).  These products will address the needs of a vast array of people with varying degrees of upper extremity limitations. 

History & Milestones

Abilitech Medical, Inc. is a medical device company based in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The company's vision is to build a suite of products that will revolutionize the way in which clinicians and patients view and treat neuromuscular conditions.

In 2016, Abilitech Medical, Inc. was founded by a group of deeply committed and knowledgeable individuals experienced with upper-limb impairments. Since inception, the team has worked to create and build solutions that restore function and independence to those affected by neuromuscular conditions.


The Abilitech™ Assist is the first in-home device on the market that will provide functional assistance and support to both the elbow and shoulder. This device has the potential to improve the lives of hundreds of thousands of patients living with Muscular Dystrophy and Multiple Sclerosis.



The Abilitech Medical team is full of dedicated individuals with a passion for improving the lives of those living with neuromuscular conditions. We are proud to have strong Leadership and an industry leading Board of Directors, as well as impactful clinical and research Partners & Scientific Advisors.



Founder, President, & CEO, Abilitech Medical

Angie Zavoral Conley has served as Abilitech’s President and Chief Executive Officer since founding the company in late 2016.  Under Angie’s leadership, Abilitech Medical has won numerous awards, including both the Tekne Award for innovation from Minnesota High Tech Association and the Grand Prize and Top Woman-led Business at the Minnesota Cup - the largest state-led business competition. Abilitech has also been recognized as a Top 10 Medical Device Startup by MedTech Outlook; a Top 20 Medical Device Startup You Need to Know by MassDevice magazine; and a Top Promising Life Science Company by Rice University. In her role as President and CEO of Abilitech, Angie has raised over ten million in equity funding and nearly two million dollars in non-dilutive funding.


Angie Conley’s work broad work experience in the medical device industry directly translates to her role as CEO of Abilitech Medical. Prior to founding Abilitech, Angie held leadership roles in several different medical device companies, including working with exoskeletons at Magic Arms; peripheral and neurovascular atherectomy devices at ev3/Covidien; heart valves, instruments, telemonitoring equipment, external and implantable pacemakers and defibrillators at Medtronic. She is an alumna of the prestigious Springboard Enterprise and Texas Medical Center accelerator programs. Angie Conley is named as an inventor on two patents.


Vice President of Sales, Abilitech Medical 

As Vice President of Sales at Abilitech Medical, Tom brings 25 years of global sales leadership with Fortune 500 companies including Stryker, McKesson, Patterson and Johnson & Johnson. In these roles, Tom specialized in new growth territories, category expansion and sales training. He has been recognized consistently throughout his career as a top sales performer, but even more important is his strong track record of recruiting and developing top sales talent into cohesive, positive and high-performing teams. We are excited to see his hands-on approach to launching the Assist device and building out our commercialization effort. Tom has a BA from St. Johns University, an MBA from The University of Minnesota Carlson School of Business, and has completed the Gallup Great Manager and Great Leader Programs.


Vice President of Research and Development, Abilitech Medical 

Clare Padgett has extensive experience in the medical device industry and her proven leadership will help to develop, manufacture, and launch Abilitech Medical's technology platform. In her 31-year career in engineering and management at Medtronic, Padgett has contributed to strategic planning and product development, translated clinical needs into future product design requirements, integrated clinician and competitive intelligence into product design and optimized business processes. Her experience in product development begins with early technology assessments and planning, through business development, to product launch, providing support and collaboration to senior leadership, and engineering and program management. Clare has a BS in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Notre Dame, and an MBA from the University of St. Thomas.


Director of Reimbursement, Abilitech Medical 

Kevin Symms (CO, BOCPO, LPO) is an experienced prosthetist and orthotist with 20+ years of clinical, research and administrative leadership experience. He has worked in all key aspects of the product lifecycle, from product review, clinical trials, launch, educational training, and technical and clinical support. Kevin is a recognized subject matter expert in medical device reimbursement, coding and clinical documentation and leads Abilitech’s reimbursement team.


Senior Principal Mechanical Engineer, Abilitech Medical 

Ryan Bauer is a Mechanical Engineer with 20+ years of experience designing and developing Class 2 and 3 medical devices. He is a skilled engineer as well as project manager, having worked on numerous products from early-stage concepts through to market release. Ryan’s expertise and oversight lead our efforts on all design aspects of the Assist and our future suite of products. Before joining the Abilitech Medical team, Ryan held technical leadership roles at Medtronic and several other contract design firms where he led initiatives on devices for cardiac and neurological stimulation, structural heart, neurovascular and left ventricular assist. Ryan received his degree in Mechanical Engineering from Case Western Reserve University.


Director of Sustaining and Continuation Engineering, Abilitech Medical

Mark Oreschnick brings 20+ years of experience in engineering, product development and operations. Mark has an established track record of success in bringing products to market, streamlining operations, maximizing productivity, and improving quality.  Since joining the team, Mark’s expertise has contributed to the design and support of our products, as well as the process preparation for commercialization. He has extensive experience working with and creating documentation that complies with FDA and ISO 13485 regulations.


Chief Financial Officer, Abilitech Medical

The extensive experience of Nancy Ness in the medical device industry brings great precision and insight to the Abilitech Medical team. She has more than 30 years experience in the financial sector, during which she has served as a contract CFO to more than 45 medical device companies. Her experience includes companies like Osprey Medical, POPS Diabetes Care and Mainstay Medical, Inc. and spans all stages of growth, from IPO management to large-scale acquisitions. Nancy has a B.A. degree in Accounting/Finance from the University of St. Thomas, MN.


Chief Marketing Officer, Abilitech Medical

Lisa has nearly 20 years of industry experience and has owned her own marketing consulting business, LRL Consulting, since 2007. Prior to that, Lisa worked in marketing in the medical device field for companies such as St. Jude Medical, Medtronic, Enpath, and American Medical Systems. Lisa has a B.S. degree in Business Administration from the University of Colorado–Boulder and an MBA from the American Graduate School of International Management.


Outside General Counsel, Abilitech Medical

Partner, Fox Rothschild LLP

Patrice Kloss has worked as a partner for both Oppenheimer Wolff & Donnelly and Fox Rothschild LLP. She has more than 20 years of legal experience, specializing as a corporate transactional attorney with an emphasis on representing medical technology companies and other emerging businesses.  Patrice advises Abilitech Medical on corporate matters, including financings. She has a B.A. in International Relations from the University of Minnesota and a J.D. from William Mitchell College.


Director of Software Engineering & Electronics, Abilitech Medical

Eli Krumholz, Ph.D., brings a range of experience in technology-based startups to Abilitech Medical. As founder of two startups prior to joining Abilitech Medical, Eli created cloud-based web applications that used artificial intelligence, data collection, and rich user interfaces to dynamically guide users in video content creation. As part of his Ph.D. in Computational Systems Biology at the University of Minnesota, Eli used network analysis, machine learning, and computational modeling to study cellular metabolism and create predictive models for genetic engineering. With Abilitech Medical, Eli directs projects ranging from robotic motion control systems to wearable sensor technology and cloud applications incorporating state-of-the-art technology to create innovative, technologically advanced products. He has extensive experience in IoT applications, IMU-based motion capture, force sensing, voice control, gesture recognition and haptic feedback. 


Director of Clinical & Product Management, Abilitech Medical

Shawna Persaud has 15 years of pre-clinical research experience and has published in the fields of stem and cancer cell biology. Her research experiences sparked her passion for developing novel approaches to improve human health. Since joining Abilitech Medical, Shawna’s role has expanded to include creating and managing all current and future clinical trials, product management, and contributions to future products’ development while educating both clinicians and patients on the capabilities of the devices. She received her B.S. in Biochemistry and her Ph.D. in Pharmacology from the University of Minnesota.


Grants Manager, Abilitech Medical

As an engineer who lives with a spinal cord injury cord, Rob brings a unique perspective to the Abilitech team. Rob supports Abilitech grant initiatives and provides an important patient voice to inform product development. Outside Abiltech, Rob is active in spinal cord injury research, fundraising, and advocacy work. He is the co-founder of GUSU2Cure Paralysis Foundation and received his B.S. in industrial and management engineering from Montana State University - Bozeman. 

Board of Directors



Founder, President, & CEO, Abilitech Medical

Angie Conley’s work experience in the medical device industry directly translates to her role as CEO of Abilitech Medical. Her experience includes leadership roles with exoskeletons at Magic Arms; peripheral and neurovascular atherectomy devices at ev3/Covidien; heart valves, instruments, telemonitoring equipment, external and implantable pacemakers and defibrillators at Medtronic. Under her leadership, Abilitech Medical has been named a Top 20 healthcare startup twice in 2019, was a Tekne Award Finalist in 2018, a 2018 & 2019 MN Cup semi-finalist, and is listed as an inventor on two PCT patents.




James Ehlen, M.D., has more than 40 years of experience in the medical field.  He served as the CEO of RespirTech and as the Chief Medical Liaison for Respiratory Care at Philips Sleep and Respiratory Care in addition to serving as a director on several medical company and healthcare boards.  Dr. Ehlen’s experience also includes executive leadership positions with Humana, Founder and Co-CEO of Allina Health System, Chairman and CEO of Medica and Physicians Health Plan of Minnesota, and Chief Clinical Innovation Officer at Humana.   He received his M.D. degree from the University of Minnesota Medical School and has board certification from the American Board of Internal Medicine and Endocrinology.



CEO, Bios Partners

Aaron Fletcher, Ph.D. has more than 10 years experience in biotech/healthcare equity industry and manages a portfolio of eight startups: 410 Medical, Abilitech Medical, Actuate Therapeutics, Azitra, Cognition Therapeutics, Encore Vision, Lantern Pharma and Lung Therapeutics. Dr. Fletcher founded and serves as CEO of Bios Research, a financial services firm that provides public equity research in the healthcare space tailored to institutional firms and large family offices. Dr. Fletcher holds a Ph.D. in Biochemistry from Colorado State University, and serves as a professor at Dallas Baptist University where he teaches Biochemistry, Bioethics, and Cell Biology. 



Managing Director, DEFTA Partners

As a venture capitalist, independent board director, and a former executive in biotech and regenerative medicine, Elona Baum’s experience within healthcare technologies provides unparalleled insight to the Abilitech Medical board. Elona has more than 20 years experience in the drug development sector at both Genentech and California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM), as well as having held leadership roles in business development, legal, and regulatory. Elona currently serves as the Managing Director of DEFTA Partners, focusing on early-stage investment in innovative therapeutic and digital health technologies. Elona has a B.A. in Economics from the University of California, Los Angeles, and a law degree from the University of San Francisco School of Law.


Our partners are an important part of our product design, delivering critical insights that result in innovative, cutting-edge and meaningful clinical devices. These relationships have been funded by grants from the National Institutes of Health and the State of Minnesota to drive meaningful solutions for people who live with neuromuscular weakness.

Scientific Advisors



Dr. Gormley’s clinical expertise focuses on treating children and adolescents who have cerebral palsy, brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, and other conditions. He received a B.S. degree in Biology from the University of Notre Dame, M.D. degree from the University of Louisville School of Medicine in Kentucky, performed a residency in physical medicine and rehabilitation at Tufts-affiliated hospitals in Boston, Mass., and a fellowship in pediatric rehabilitation at the University of Michigan Medical Center, Ann Arbor, Michigan. As the section chief for pediatric physical medicine and rehabilitation at Gillette Children's Specialty Healthcare, he helps patients achieve their highest level of independence and quality of life. As an active researcher, clinician, and presenter (over 190 combined presentations/publications) he follows more than 2,000 cerebral palsy patients in the United States, and has 29 years of clinical experience treating children with neuromuscular disorders that gives him a unique perspective to provide guidance on medical device design.


“I believe in the transformative potential of assistive devices that facilitate functional gains and therapeutic benefits."



William Durfee is Professor and Director of Design Education in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Minnesota. He received a A.B. degree in Engineering and Applied Physics from Harvard University and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Mechanical Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. With 180 publications, his professional research interests include medical device design, rehabilitation engineering, advanced orthotics, biomechanics, and physiology of human muscle including electrical stimulation of muscle, product design, and design education.



Marny is a Minnesota licensed Physical Therapist and the Director of Rehabilitation at Regions Hospital. She has a Master’s degree in Physical Therapy from the Saint Louis University. During her Master’s degree program, she performed a year-long independent study course on the newly emerging field of neuroplasticity.


For the last 18 years, she has been a pivotal leader of staff, organizations, and programs in the neuroscience and rehabilitation fields. She began her career in Boulder, Colorado with a company called ‘Medically-Based Fitness’ focused on improving the function and performance of medically complex patient populations, with a personal interest in Parkinson’s disease. Marny has been employed as a rehabilitation leader at HealthPartners since 2008. As the Director of Rehabilitation, Marny has played a key role in developing the partnership between Neuroscience Research, Rehabilitation, and Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation physicians. She has been a collaborator on research studies examining the impact of exercise on Parkinson’s disease, quality of life, and pain management. Marny is also currently the Chair of the Rehabilitation Advisory Committee and is a member of the Regions Hospital Patient Care Committee and Combined Critical Care Committee.



Dr. Ludewig has an M.A. in Physical Therapy and a Ph.D. in Exercise Science from the University of Iowa. She has been a professor at the University of Minnesota for more than 20 years, becoming the Director of the Division of Physical Therapy at the University of Minnesota Medical School in 2019.


Dr. Ludewig belongs to several professional organizations and associations, including the American Physical Therapy Association, American Society of Biomechanics and International Society of Biomechanics (International Shoulder Group). She has conducted extensive research, particularly regarding shoulder dysfunction within musculoskeletal injury and rehabilitation. 



Carrie received her B.S. in Occupational Therapy from St. Catherine University in St. Paul, Minnesota. She has experience in sub-acute rehab, inpatient, and outpatient therapy. She currently works in the ABLE intensive exercise program for people with paralysis. She has expertise in spinal cord injury, neuromuscular recovery, and shoulder pain management.

"Abilitech will change lives by increasing a person's ability to complete daily tasks with more independence."



Kevin is a partner with Arise Orthotics & Prosthetics in Spring Lake Park, MN and serves as Clinical Manager. As a veteran in the field for over 30 years, Kevin sees both prosthetic and orthotic patients of all ages and diagnoses.

Kevin graduated from Concordia College. In his free time Kevin serves as President of the Minnesota Society of Orthotists, Prosthetists, and Pedorthists, a non-profit organization created to protect the public health and promote the welfare of residents of the State of Minnesota, and several boards for the American Orthotic and Prosthetic Association (AOPA). Kevin volunteered in Haiti after the earthquake in early 2010 working with orthotic and prosthetic patients through the non-profit organization Helping Hands for Haiti.

Careers & Internships

At Abilitech Medical, we create assistive devices that allow those with upper-limb neuromuscular conditions or injuries to function independently at home, in the community and at work.  We are looking for skilled and motivated people who want to be a part of a growing company where everything you do will make a difference.  Explore how you can join our team and how you can improve the quality of life for hundreds of thousands of people.

Open Positions: Join our team and make a difference.


To learn more about careers at Abilitech Medical contact us at Info@abilitechmedical.com

We count on the new ideas and unique perspectives that interns bring to our team.  While participating in our internship program, you will work hands-on with our team to gain experience and make an impact.

To learn more about internships at Abilitech Medical, contact us at

Abilitech Medical is an equal opportunities employer - Persons of all genders, minorities, abilities and veteran status are encouraged to apply. If you should require additional assistance, please contact info@abilitechmedical.com so we can accommodate.


Improving the lives of people in the United States affected by neuromuscular conditions.

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