CEO of nēdl, Serial Entrepreneur
Ayinde Alakoye is a serial entrepreneur and the co-founder and CEO of nēdl, his third live broadcast radio streaming venture. Ayinde was also the creator of the original iheartradio app served as a Speechwriter, Staffer, and Senior Message Advisor for Presidential Candidate Barack Obama, during both elections.
Founder of Capway, Author
Sheena Allen is an entrepreneur, author, speaker, and creative architect. She is the founder of Capway, a neobank for those who do not fit into the traditional banking system, which gave Sheena the title of the youngest female in America to own and operate a digital bank. Sheena has been featured in various documentaries and publications, including Inc Magazine and Forbes.
Co-founder of Tangelo Technologies
Antonio pioneered the adoption of early social media platforms at Fortune 500 companies and managed the integration of emerging technologies. Currently, he is co-founder of Tangelo Technologies, a Venture Studio and Innovation Lab in Silicon Valley where he believes that technology can and must contribute to society in positive, ethical, equitable, and scalable ways.
Columnist, Author, Tech Entrepreneur
A sought after voice of inspiration, Mandy is a columnist, founder, and prolific influencer. Her breadth of work in mind+body connection and unwavering optimism has earned her global attention and positioning alongside elite social leaders and sports figures around the world. Mandy now travels the globe inspiring resilience through her recent and personal triumph in mental and physical wellness.
Co-Founder & CEO of O.school, Author
Andrea Barrica, author of Sex Tech Revolution, is CEO and Co-founder of O.school, a judgment-free multimedia platform to learn about sexuality and pleasure. Previously, Andrea co-founded accounting and tax platform, inDinero.com, where she led sales and operations. She also served as a venture partner and entrepreneur-in-residence at 500 Startups.
Founder and Creator of Shazam, Entrepreneur, Inventor, and Tech Investor
Chris Barton is the Founder and Creator of Shazam. Chris’s creation of Shazam was nothing short of pure magic as it was far ahead of its time. Chris seeks to delight people by using technology to make seemingly impossible ideas come to life. In his speeches, Chris’s story and storytelling completely captivate audiences. He inspires people to make big things happen in their organizations – to create magic in defiance of the obstacles.
Founder and CEO of Seed&Spark
Emily Best is the founder and CEO of Seed&Spark. An advocate for equity inclusion in the entertainment industry (and the entire working world), Best regularly speaks at conferences and events about leveraging entertainment to build equity and sustainability for everyone, crowdfunding, and pitching, building equitable startups, and serves as an advisor and mentor to dozens of early-stage companies.
General Partner at Lightship Capital
Candice Matthews is a General Partner at Lightship Capital, where she finds and funds high growth, minority-led companies operating in underserved ecosystems throughout the Midwest. She also directs programming at Lightship Foundation, the inclusion-focused entrepreneur enrichment program guiding minority founders with instruction in product development, brand building, leveraging artificial intelligence for business and fundraising.
CEO and Co-founder of Hearken, Award-Winning Journalist, Serial Entrepreneur, Innovator
Jennifer Brandel is an award-winning journalist, founder and organizer whose work spans journalism, civic engagement, democracy and entrepreneurship. She’s a dynamic, sought-after keynote speaker and workshop facilitator. Brandel began her career in journalism reporting for outlets including NPR, CBC, WBEZ, The New York Times, and Vice. She is the founder of Hearken, which helps institutions better listen and respond to their stakeholders.
Founder and CEO of Win-Win, Former Pro-Athlete
Mike Brown, a pro-athlete turned self-taught coder, transitioned from tackling to tech and went on to be the founder and CEO of Win-Win, a platform powered by gaming and giving. Win-Win enables pro athletes and influencers to monetize their fanbase and help brands engage with end consumers.
Design Leader, Staff Product Designer at Faire, Former Director of UX at VICE
Jessica Brown is staff product designer at Faire. She previously led design and user research teams at Vice Media and Rent the Runway. Fascinated by the co-evolution of culture and technology, she loves leading teams to find simple design solutions to complex problems. Jessica speaks on executing redesigns at scale and common philosophies and practices guiding creative people of all disciplines. She has established design and research practices that brought users’ stories to the heart of the product.
Co-CEO of US Market Access & A3 Global Collider
Chris is a serial entrepreneur with global experience. Since 2010, he has focused on bringing the lessons of Silicon Valley to entrepreneurs around the world. He is the co-founder of the US Market Access Center and the A3 Global Collider. Through USMAC, Chris has trained and mentored more than 1,000 startups from 25+ countries.
Cofounder & CEO of ShearShare
Dr. Tye Caldwell is the Cofounder & CEO of ShearShare. Recognized as a tech visionary and industry pioneer, Dr. Caldwell’s mission is to help beauty and barbering professionals around the world maximize their earnings potential. He has worked in beauty for 25 years as a master barber-stylist, educator, and small business coach, offering his 20+ years of industry knowledge as a proven roadmap.
Co-Founder & COO of ShearShare
Courtney Caldwell is the Cofounder & COO of beauty-tech startup, ShearShare, the largest provider of on-demand salon and barbershop space rentals and the most affordable leases in the market. She is also an award-winning entrepreneur and tech founder and has spent two decades building winning teams in tech marketing.
Co-founder & CEO of La Familia, Model, Actress
Cheryl Campos is the co-founder and CEO of La Familia, a non-profit organization focused on closing the capital gap for Latine founders and funders. Previously, she was the Head of Venture Growth and Partnerships at Republic, an investment platform for founders to raise capital from both accredited and non-accredited investors. Cheryl is a recognized speaker and is passionate about the intersection of finance, technology, and social impact.
COO & Partner at Tangelo
Tara Carter is a highly driven COO/Partner at Tangelo and a Partner at Backstage Capital, providing full circle guidance to startups and larger. She has over 25 years of experience in mentoring, growing and advising startups, investor relations, omni-channel marketing, business strategy, deep technology, and product development, diversity and inclusion, predictive analytics, data visualization, business intelligence, and activism.
CEO and founder of the GUILD, Serial Entrepreneur, and Super Connector in Silicon Valley
Anne Cocquyt, CEO and founder of the GUILD, is an inspirational speaker on entrepreneurship, innovation, and leadership. She speaks on how to start businesses, prototyping, building successful partnerships, and how to attract and retain winning diverse teams. She moderates and joins panels on gender bias in AI, product management, and technology trends, and teaches design-thinking workshops on building innovation ecosystems.
Bestselling Author and Entrepreneur
Mark Coopersmith is a bestselling author, entrepreneur, Fortune 500 executive, and educator. Mark has mentored hundreds of startup teams which have launched groundbreaking new ventures in sectors as varied as web services, consumer electronics, medical devices, internet-of-things, education, cleantech, fintech, and fashion.
Serial Entrepreneur & Inventor
Dawn Dickson is a serial entrepreneur and inventor with over 20 years of experience in technology, marketing, and business development. Her most recent ventures are Flat Out of Heels and PopCom. Dawn is a seasoned professional speaker, business advisor, and angel investor. She continues to be recognized as one of the nation’s top retail tech entrepreneurs.
Co-Founder & CEO of SHYFT Power Solutions
Ugwem Eneyo is co-founder and CEO of SHYFT Power Solutions, specializing in the use of IoT software and big data to improve access to clean, reliable and affordable energy solutions in markets that struggle with grid resiliency. Ms. Eneyo explores how we use tech to create ‘grids of the future’ but particularly in emerging markets. She’s given talks on the nexus of energy and sustainable development to global thought leaders, including the World Bank.
Founder & CEO of Change Catalyst, Author on Allyship
Melinda Briana Epler, author of “How To Be An Ally”, has over 25 years of experience developing business innovation and inclusion strategies for startups, Fortune 500 companies, and global NGOs. As CEO of Change Catalyst, Melinda currently works with the tech industry to solve diversity and inclusion together. Using her background in storytelling and large-scale culture change, she is a strategic advisor for tech companies, tech hubs, and governments around the world.
Professor & Global Leader in Tech, IP, Crypto Innovation
Professor Tonya M. Evans is a global leader, accomplished academic and administrator, and world-renowned speaker with over twenty years of experience in law, innovation, academia, and entrepreneurship. She writes, speaks and teaches primarily in the areas of intellectual property, blockchain and crypto assets, tech and innovation, information privacy, financial inclusion, and economic empowerment.
Marketing and Brand Elevation Specialist, DEI Consultant, Founder Encounter Your Potential
Sandra Garcia is a Marketing and Branding strategist and Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Consultant. Now the founder of Encounter Your Potential, she develops and executes strategies that use marketing as the pillar for achieving business goals and driving revenue.
Expansive Leadership Expert
Andrea Guendelman is a writer, speaker, and entrepreneur who specializes in Expansive Leadership—helping individuals and organizations unlock potential through openness. She is a leading force in creating platforms for minority professionals and the tech industry. Through her own experiences as a Harvard-trained corporate lawyer and an entrepreneur, she co-created Bevisiblelatinx, Wallbreakers, and most recently, Speak_.
Founder Backstage Capital & Runner, Author, and Venture Catalyst
Arlan Hamilton is a remarkable entrepreneur who built a venture capital fund from the ground up, while homeless. She is the Founder and Managing Partner of Backstage Capital, a VC firm dedicated to minimizing funding disparities in tech by investing in high-potential founders who are people of color, women, and/or LGBT.
Host of Do The Work, Producer, DJ
Denise Love Hewett is the host of the podcast, Do the Work, which focuses on redefining leadership to be more holistic. This was birthed out of her time as a founder of Scriptd, an entertainment tech company working to dismantle the inefficient and exclusionary practices of Hollywood. She comes from the world of entertainment, fashion, and hospitality, starting her career as the Director of Sales and Marketing at famed nightclub The Box.
Founder & CEO of Bandwagon
Harold Hughes is the founder & CEO of Bandwagon, a South Carolina-based live experience technology company. As a web3 builder and community leader, Harold published "A Kids Book About Blockchain" to help educate people "from 6 to 60" about the revolutionary technology that Bandwagon specializes in. Harold is also an active angel investor, primarily investing in women, people of color, and Black founder-led companies.
Founder & CEO of Healthy Roots Dolls
Yelitsa Jean-Charles founded Healthy Roots after recognizing a need for more diverse toys and representation in children’s publishing. She has been recognized as Essence’s 50 Founders to watch and frequently speaks about entrepreneurship, social justice, and cultural competency.
CMO of Watty, Self-Made Marketer, Influencer
Maral, also known as, ‘Maral from Twitter’, ‘Powerhouse’, ‘energy pack’ or ‘Curly’ is one of the most familiar faces in the Nordic tech scene. Maral is the CMO at Watty, one of the hottest startups in Europe. She is also the co-founder of Peppy Pals, an active ambassador for diversity in tech. Former StartupGrind chapter director and SUP46 Femtech co-organizer.
Chief Evangelist of Canva, Former Chief Evangelist of Apple, Bestselling Author
Guy Kawasaki is a bestselling author, former chief evangelist of Apple, and a former trustee of the Wikimedia Foundation. Today, he is the chief evangelist of Canva (an online graphic design tool), brand ambassador for Mercedes-Benz, and is also an executive fellow of the Haas School of Business (UC Berkeley).
CEO & Co-Founder Likeable Media, Host of "All the Social Ladies", Author
Carrie Kerpen an author, columnist, host of the popular podcast “All the Social Ladies”, and the co-founder and CEO of Likeable Media, a digital agency that was named Crain’s sixth Best Place to Work in NYC.
Brand Marketer, Venture Investor, Startup Advisor
As a brand marketer, venture investor, and startup advisor, Dave Knox bridges the worlds of the Fortune 500 and entrepreneurship and is widely recognized as an industry thought leader.
NY Times Bestselling Author, Cofounder, Writer & Producer
Jonas is a New York Times bestselling author, entrepreneur, and storyteller, and an award-winning writer & producer of books, documentaries, and branded entertainment at storytelling boutique Koffler Pictures. Jonas regularly presents at conferences, organizations, and events on personal innovation and unconventional thinking, the future of work, creativity and learning, community building, wellness, and resilience.
Speaker, Author, Investor, Innovation Expert
Joseph Kopser serves as an Executive-in-Residence at the McCombs School of Business. Prior to that his company, RideScout, was acquired by Mercedes. He served in the Army for 20 years after graduating from West Point and Harvard. He was recognized as a White House Champion of Change in clean energy and won the U.S. DOT Data Innovation Award. Co-author of, Catalyst, he is an advisor for CleanTX.
CEO of Drop, Creative Technologist
Russell Ladson is a creative technologist whose work sits at the intersection of emerging technologies, purposeful design, and visual art. His work investigates the use of emerging technologies like AR/VR (XR) to heighten the human-to-human experience through experimental concepts around information discovery in a post-smartphone world.
Employee Experience Pioneer, Globally Minded HR Leader
Mark Levy is a seasoned globally-minded Employee Experience Leader who has chosen to work for big-hearted companies and focus on how he can unleash the talents and passions of a company’s employees. Mark was the pioneer of designing the Employee Experience at Airbnb and most recently at Allbirds, showing organizations what is possible when you empower employees and rethink HR.
eCommerce Business Expert, Influencer, Coach, Author
Karl Lillrud is a best-selling author of 6 books, two times TEDx speaker. Also, He has been honored as one of the world’s Top 50 eCommerce experts, Top 30 eCommerce influencers, Top 50 speakers on online growth and eCommerce.
Karl Lillrud educates and inspires his audience on subjects related to online consumer behavior, internet-based business, e-commerce, and online strategies.
Founder & CEO of Pilotly
James Norman is a serial entrepreneur who at the age of 16 built his first online company. While previously he may have been known as a visionary in automotive product planning, over the past 10 years in the media and entertainment industry, he has become a thought leader in over-the-top media and consumer video consumption behaviors.
CEO and Co-Founder of Revry
Damian Pelliccione is the CEO and Co-Founder of Revry, the world’s first LGBTQ Global Content Streaming Network. With over 15 years of experience in the digital and new media world and as an avid speaker, passionate about supporting the LGBTQ community in both authentic representation and entrepreneurship, Damian has spoken at more than over 250 conferences and film festivals around the world.
Early Stage Investor at Backstage Capital, Inventor
Christie Pitts is an experienced early-stage investor at Backstage Capital and co-founder of Backstage Studio. Additionally, Christie led the launch of the first global accelerator program for underrepresented founders. She identified a passion for working with early-stage companies while working as Venture Development Manager at Verizon.
Netflix Co-Founder, Entrepreneur, Advisor, Bestselling Author, Executive Mentor & Angel Investor
Marc Randolph is a veteran Silicon Valley entrepreneur, advisor, and investor. Although best known as the co-founder and first CEO of Netflix, Marc’s career as an entrepreneur spans more than four decades. He's founded or co-founded six other successful startups, mentored rising entrepreneurs, and invested in numerous successful tech ventures. He is a frequent speaker at industry events, serving variously as a board member, mentor, or executive coach.
Entrepreneur, Venture Capitalist, Author, Mentor
Bill Reichert is co-founder and Managing Director of Garage Technology Ventures, a well-known seed and early-stage venture capital firm in Silicon Valley. Bill travels around the world giving presentations and workshops on innovation, entrepreneurship, venture capital, and technology trends.
IBM Master Inventor, AI & Technology Expert, Author
Neil Sahota (萨冠军) is an IBM Master Inventor, United Nations (UN) Advisor, Artificial Intelligence (AI) subject matter expert, Faculty at UC Irvine, and author of Own the A.I. Revolution. With 20+ years of business experience, he works with organizations to create next-generation products/solutions powered by emerging technology.
CEO of Opportunity Hub, Inclusive Startup Ecosystem Builder, Venture Capitalist, Economist
Rodney Sampson, of Opportunity Hub, is heralded as the leading inclusive startup ecosystem builder and is passionate about reducing poverty and wealth gap by advancing the cause of innovation, technology, entrepreneurship and investment as a way of life for all, with an emphasis on socially disadvantaged and under-estimated and sponsored communities in America and beyond.
Director of Growth and Campus Operations at Course Hero
As an early former employee of Airbnb, Kati Schmidt worked on launching and scaling Airbnb’s operations in Europe, starting Airbnb’s public policy efforts globally and launching Airbnb Experiences. Kati is passionate about female entrepreneurship, immigration, and the transatlantic relationship.
Co-Founder & CEO of Fearless Fund, Entrepreneur, Author
Arian Simone is an entrepreneur, philanthropist, investor, best-selling author, and international speaker. She is the Co-Founder and CEO of the Fearless Fund, the First Venture Capital Fund built for WOC by WOC. She has been recognized by Entrepreneur Magazine as one of the “100 Women of Impact".
Founder of Novoron Bioscience
Dr. Travis Stiles is the founder of Novoron Bioscience, which is developing therapeutics to reverse damage of the brain and spinal cord. A member of the Cherokee Nation, Dr. Stiles is a passionate advocate for diversity, equality, science and informed solutions to the world’s problems and speaks across the spectrum from innovators to policymakers to encourage the ideas and policies that will shape the future.
GP at Ganas Ventures
Lolita Taub is a GP at Ganas Ventures where she invests in pre-seed and seed community-driven companies in the US and Latin America. She is a woman of color with 13 years in tech, micro-influencer, an international keynote speaker, 2x TEDx speaker whose work in venture capital and tech has been recognized on Forbes, Inc.com, The Huffington Post and Entrepreneur.com among other publications.
Creator, Inventor, Tech Changemaker
Aniyia Williams is a creator, inventor, and tech changemaker. She serves as Executive Director of Black & Brown Founders, co-founder of Zebras Unite, and founded and led the fashion tech company, Tinsel. Aniyia addresses topics of diversity, equity and inclusion in tech, the economic future of creativity, self-awareness and mindfulness, alternatives to venture capital, fashion technology, hardware design, and parenting while building a startup.
Serial Social Entrepreneur, Co-Founder of Cola Love & Zebras Unite
Mara Zepeda is a co-founder of Cola Love, a catalytic community and economic development design studio in Columbia, South Carolina. She is also the Co-Founder of Zebras Unite, an international and intersectional hybrid cooperative and non-profit creating a more ethical, inclusive, collaborative, and sustainable approach to building businesses. She is a systempreneur and serial social entrepreneur and she speaks about and leads workshops on education, trust, social networks, and the future of business internationally.