The NUMiX Team

NUMiX was founded in 2018 to address problems at the intersection of water, waste, and critical metal value chains.

Our team members have backgrounds in water treatment, environmental health and safety, chemical and mechanical engineering, materials science and law with the breadth and depth to understand and address your unique challenges with metal removal from water.

Katie Kollhoff


Katie has over ten years of experience with chemical process performance and chemical safety management with a range of clients from the chemical process industries to major food processing to R&D. Throughout, she has been managing hazardous materials with an eye on waste reduction and beneficial reuse. She holds a Master’s of Engineering Management degree from Northwestern University, a BS in chemical engineering and a BA in Spanish Language and Literature both from the University of Kansas. Finding, communicating, and tackling big, worthwhile problems with a notable effect on people and the planet is her passion.

Matt Heise


Matt has over ten years of engineering and management experience in energy and water/wastewater process engineering. He completed graduate studies in business strategy, finance, accounting, and marketing. Matt has a background in mechanical engineering, a Master's in Engineering Management from Northwestern, and a passion for energy and water resource optimization.

Laurelle Banta

Materials & Ops Analyst

Laurelle Banta holds a Master’s of Science in Law degree from Northwestern with a background in mechanical engineering. Her expertise in analytics and intellectual property, complemented by her research experience in surface desalination and nuclear power and policy, makes her a unique asset to the team. Her interest in developing responsible radioactive waste remediation helps drive our team's passion to treat water better.

Ian Wiese


Ian Wiese joined NUMIX as the chief technology officer in late 2018. In this role, he invents, screens, and manufactures candidate materials for specific customer processes. He also leads process and application scale up for deployment of sorbent materials and harvesting of critical metals. Having managed metal foundries for the past seven years, Ian's rich experience with large scale production, complemented by innovation at the molecular scale, informs our product mix. With a background in materials science & engineering and a Master of Engineering Management from Northwestern, Ian's technical drive and business savvy round out the NUMiX team.

Olivia Lugar

Co-Founder & Advisor

Olivia holds a JD from Northwestern and is an Associate in the finance practice area at Pillsbury Law. She has a background working in energy and finance, and her research has included hazardous waste transportation planning and waste project financing. With waste management running in the family, she is passionate about reducing society’s environmental impact in this ever more tech driven world. As a co-founder and adviser, Olivia provides strategic direction to the NUMiX team.