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Investing in seed and early-stage healthcare


UpStart’s principals are uniquely qualified serial entrepreneurs, with a wealth of experience in start-up management. We believe that our company start-up and operating expertise has afforded us an unusually keen capability to identify enabling technology with high commercial potential for meeting major market needs and to build successful companies serving those needs.

We are experienced general partners with strong venture backgrounds, deep industry expertise and a breadth of established relationships. Over the last 33 years, our team members have organized, financed, and operated over 30 healthcare and life science start-up companies, including the formation, funding, and management of companies, including Anesta, Myriad Genetics, Sonic Innovations, and Acacia Biosciences.

the team


Steve Borst

Managing Director

Steve Borst has an extensive background in both operation of venture capital funded life science companies and management of venture capital firms.  Mr. Borst has worked for the venture funds Pelion Ventures, Frontenac Company and Capital Health Venture Partners, located in Salt Lake City and Chicago.

Mr. Borst has also worked with the venture-funded companies Q Therapuetics, American Wholehealth and Applied Computer Technology for Patient Care.    

Mr. Borst received a B.S. in Industrial Engineering from the University of Michigan and an M.B.A. from the J. L. Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University.

Dennis Farrar

Managing Director

Mr. Farrar has over 17 years of seed stage venture investing delivering investors an outstanding 213% IRR. Starting in the early 1990, Mr. Farrar launched the Founders Fund, which invested in 9 university life science technologies, launching and exiting 7. 

Mr. Farrar has held numerous executives positions: Q Therapeutics, Inc., Co-Founder, initial President & CEO, Arcaris Proteomics, among others. 

Mr. Farrar started his professional career as an attorney, working in New York City, San Francisco and Salt Lake City. He holds both a BA and JD from Stanford University.    


Stephanie Sorensen

Financial Controller

Stephanie L. Sorensen joined us in May 2012 as Financial Controller for UpStart and several of its portfolio companies. Over the last 25 years she has served in operational and financial positions for both private and public companies in the pharmaceutical, telecommunications and software development industries.


From October 2009 to August 2012, Ms. Sorensen was the Assistant Controller of World Heart Corporation, a publicly traded medical device company that had developed a ventricular heart valve for late stage heart failure patients as a bridge-to-transplant solution. WorldHeart was acquired by HeartWare International, Inc. in 2012.


From November 2007 to October 2009, Ms. Sorensen was the Assistant Controller of Amedica Corporation, a medical device company that developed and sold ceramic spinal implants.


She received her Bachelors of Science from the Marriott School of Management at Brigham Young University and her Masters of Business Administration from the David Eccles School of Business at the University of Utah.

Mary Campos

Administrative Assistant

Mary Campos is a highly experienced Administrator.  She has almost three decades  of experience in various senior administrative roles, including 14 years with American Express and 5 years with MedQuest, a medical device startup company that was acquired by WorldHeart Corporation.

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