Velo3D Expands Board of Directors with Three New Appointments

by | September 8, 2021

Incoming board members represent ‘voice of the customer’ with almost a century of collective leadership experience across aviation, energy, engineering, manufacturing, and operations

CAMPBELL, Calif. – September 8, 2021 – Velo3D, Inc. (“Velo3D”), a leader in advanced additive manufacturing (AM) for high-value metal parts, announced that it has temporarily expanded the number of seats on its board of directors with the appointments of three new board members – Michael Idelchik, Ellen Smith and Gabrielle Toledano – collectively representing nearly a century of public and private company leadership experience across aviation, energy, engineering, manufacturing, and operations. The appointments are effective immediately and the board is now made up of 10 directors. Within six months following the closing of the business combination between Velo3D and JAWS Spitfire Acquisition Corporation (NYSE: SPFR), the size of the board will decrease to 9 directors.

Michael Idelchik was previously Vice President and officer of advanced technology at GE Global Research where for 39 years he led a global team of 1,200 scientists, engineers and technicians from virtually every major scientific and engineering discipline. Idelchik started his career at GE in GE Aviation, receiving two awards for his engineering prowess. During his time at GE Healthcare and GE Lighting, Idelchik built a track record of aligning engineering, manufacturing and technology to reflect market trends. In 2002 he founded and built the China Engineering, Sourcing, Manufacturing and Research Technical Center in Shanghai.

Ellen Smith joined Velo3D from FTI Consulting where she served as senior managing director of the Energy, Power and Products practice. She has more than 30 years of experience including GE Energy and later at Pratt & Whitney, where she headed both the power segment and commercial engine segment with accountability for all P&L activities relating to aeroderivative power generation product sales, projects and service. As Pratt & Whitney’s vice president of commercial engine programs, Smith led the development teams for the PW6000 engine and the PW4000, PW2000 and JT8/9D operational engine programs. Smith also previously served as the chief operating officer at National Grid U.S. and before that, as vice president of refinery optimization at Hess Corp. She has a leadership role on the Global Steering Committee for FTI Consulting’s Women’s Initiative and was named to the Top 50 Women in Power in 2003.

As chief operating officer of Keystone Strategy LLC, Gabrielle Toledano has nearly 30 years of extensive leadership experience in human resources and operations at both enterprise and consumer companies. She is a purpose-driven leader, with a deep passion for developing people and building a strong culture of diversity and inclusion. Toledano has experience serving on 10 public and private boards, including previously as chair of the compensation committee at Glu Mobile and Jive Software. Toledano currently serves as compensation committee chair at and is a member of the compensation committee at Bose Corporation as well as a board member at Namely. Previously, she was executive in residence for Comcast Ventures and its portfolio companies and was chief human resources officer at Tesla, Electronic Arts, and Siebel Systems. Toledano will join the Velo3D board as compensation committee chair.

“One of our guiding principles at Velo3D is to stay laser focused on solving customer problems and helping our customers be successful,” said Benny Buller, founder and CEO, Velo3D. “I asked Mike, Ellen and Gaby to join the board for this reason – I want the voice of our customers to drive our decision-making process/strategic direction. Their experience, talent and leadership will be major assets to Velo3D as we become a public company and accelerate through our next phase of growth.”

In March 2021, Velo3D announced plans to merge with JAWS Spitfire Acquisition Corporation and become a public company.

To learn more about how Velo3Dempowers engineers and designers to imagine more and additively manufacture nearly anything, follow Velo3Don LinkedIn or visit

About Velo3D

Velo3D, one of Fast Company’s 2021 World’s Most Innovative Companies, empowers engineers and designers to imagine more and additively manufacture nearly anything with a fully-integrated patented solution of software, hardware, and process-control featuring FlowTM print preparation software, AssureTM quality assurance software and the Sapphire® family of laser powder bed 3D printers. Velo3D additive manufacturing solutions for 3D-printing high-value metal parts allow for previously impossible geometries, so businesses can make the mission-critical parts they need without compromise. Customers include some of the world’s most visionary companies, such as Aerojet Rocketdyne, Chromalloy, Honeywell, LAM Research and Raytheon Technologies. For more information, follow Velo3D on LinkedIn or visit

Forward-Looking Statements

This press release includes “forward-looking statements”. JAWS Spitfire’s and Velo3D’s actual results may differ from Velo3D’s expectations, estimates and projections and consequently, you should not rely on these forward-looking statements as predictions of future events. Words such as “expect”, “estimate”, “project”, “budget”, “forecast”, “anticipate”, “intend”, “plan”, “may”, “will”, “could”, “should”, “believes”, “predicts”, “potential”, “continue”, and similar expressions are intended to identify such forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements include, without limitation, Velo3D’s expectations with respect to the timing of the completion of the business combination transaction, its future growth and the size of the board of the combined company. These forward-looking statements involve significant risks and uncertainties that could cause the actual results to differ materially from the expected results. You should carefully consider the risks and uncertainties described in the “Risk Factors” section of JAWS Spitfire’s preliminary proxy statement/prospectus on Form S-4, as amended, relating to the business combination, which has been filed by JAWS Spitfire with the SEC and the other documents filed by JAWS Spitfire from time to time with the SEC. These filings identify and address other important risks and uncertainties that could cause actual events and results to differ materially from those contained in the forward-looking statements. Most of these factors are outside JAWS Spitfire’s and Velo3D’s control and are difficult to predict. Factors that may cause such differences include, but are not limited to: (1) the outcome of any legal proceedings that may be instituted against JAWS Spitfire or Velo3D following the announcement of the transaction; (2) the inability to complete the transaction, including due to the inability to concurrently close the business combination and the private placement of common stock or due to failure to obtain approval of the stockholders of JAWS Spitfire; (3) delays in obtaining, adverse conditions contained in, or the inability to obtain necessary regulatory approvals or complete regular reviews required to complete the transaction; (4) the risk that the transaction disrupts current plans and operations as a result of the announcement and consummation of the transaction; (5) the inability to recognize the anticipated benefits of the transaction, which may be affected by, among other things, competition, the ability of the combined company to grow and manage growth profitably, maintain relationships with customers and suppliers and retain its key employees; (6) costs related to the transaction; (7) changes in the applicable laws or regulations; (8) the possibility that the combined company may be adversely affected by other economic, business, and/or competitive factors; (9) the impact of the global COVID-19 pandemic; and (10) other risks and uncertainties indicated from time to time described in JAWS Spitfire’s preliminary proxy statement/prospectus, including those under “Risk Factors” therein, and in JAWS Spitfire’s other filings with the SEC. Velo3D cautions that the foregoing list of factors is not exclusive and not to place undue reliance upon any forward-looking statements, including projections, which speak only as of the date made. Velo3D does not undertake or accept any obligation to release publicly any updates or revisions to any forward-looking statements to reflect any change in its expectations or any change in events, conditions or circumstances on which any such statement is based.


This press release is not a proxy statement or solicitation of a proxy, consent or authorization with respect to any securities or in respect of the potential transaction and shall not constitute an offer to sell or a solicitation of an offer to buy the securities of JAWS Spitfire, Velo3D or the combined company, nor shall there be any sale of any such securities in any state or jurisdiction in which such offer, solicitation, or sale would be unlawful prior to registration or qualification under the securities laws of such state or jurisdiction. No offer of securities shall be made except by means of a prospectus meeting the requirements of the Securities Act.

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About the Author

Dan Sorensen

Sr. Director of PR and Social Media

Dan Sorensen is the Sr. Director of Public Relations and Social Media at Velo3D, where he oversees the company’s public image and communications efforts. Dan works closely with customers to better understand their needs and to execute joint announcements. Prior to joining Velo3D, Dan worked for various companies in enterprise tech, including those in software, hardware, and venture capital.