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.
Sheena Allen is the founder of Capway, a neobank for those who do not fit into the traditional banking system, and Sheena Allen Apps, a successful media tech company. Born in Terry, Mississippi, Sheena travels the world speaking on the importance of inclusion in tech and entrepreneurship. Sheena has been featured in various publications and most recently was part of the Forbes 30 under 30 for 2019.
Rebecca Altamirano has dedicated her professional life to working within underrepresented communities to open up access to the culture of power. Her professional path has given her deep hands-on experience on working with the underserved and underrepresented. Many of these experiences she has shared as a co-author of “Be The Change: Reinventing Schools for Student Success”
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.
Kwame Anku is the CEO and Chairman of the Black Star Fund, an early-stage innovation fund. Kwame has worked extensively in business development and media marketing for over two decades, entering into the tech industry after being personally recruited by the late legendary rock star Prince to develop his mobile app, overseeing business and development teams on Africa, Asia, and the US.
Mandy Antoniacci’s insatiable quest for transforming the way people see the world has made her a sought-after voice of social change for this generation. Her body of work — exploring the power in seeing the unseen — has earned her global attention and exclusive discussions with elite social leaders and sports figures around the world.
Paul Armstrong is an in-demand speaker on emerging technologies, social technologies and strategy, and regularly advises brands like Coca-Cola, Experian, Sony Music, P&G, PwC and several technology start-ups. He writes a column for Forbes and also advises the UK Government on digital strategy.
Brian Banmiller is a national business journalist and public speaker who has spent more than 40 years in the news industry, covering business, politics and the economy on television, radio and in print. Currently, his “Banmiller on Business” reports and speeches are delivered to an audience of millions nationwide.
Andrea Barrica 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.
Morgen Bromell is a founder and technologist working to make tech more accessible to people of color through justice-based initiatives and tech activism. Apart from being the founder of Thurst, a dating app for the LGBTQIA+ community, they are also deeply invested in community building and documenting queer histories, particularly how queer and trans people use digital resources and online platforms to navigate our world.
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.
Jessica Brown leads the digital design team as Director of UX at VICE Media, where she focuses on showcasing VICE’s distinct storytelling on mobile, web, and TV apps. 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.
Daniel Burrus is considered one of the world’s leading technology forecasters and innovation experts helping clients profit from technological, social and business forces that are converging to create enormous, untapped opportunities. The New York Times has referred to him as one of the top three business gurus in the highest demand as a speaker.
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.
Jeff Butler is a speaker, author, and international consultant who helps organizations improve their relationships with millennial employees. Unlike other experts on millennials, Jeff has been in the trenches of what it means to be a millennial and what it takes to retain and keep them engaged. You may have seen him on Forbes, USA Weekly, or on the TED stage.
Eric Byres is an awarding winning expert in the field of SCADA/ICS and IIoT security. Experienced in controls engineering, security research and corporate management, he offers a unique blend of deep technical knowledge and practical business experience.
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.
Courtney Caldwell is the Cofounder & COO of ShearShare, the first on-demand salon and barbershop space rental app. She is also an award-winning entrepreneur and tech founder and has spent two decades building winning teams in tech marketing.
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.
Dr. Chiao began his professional career as a chemical engineer, and his passion for space exploration led him to NASA. Following a stellar 15-year astronaut career, he moved on to leadership positions in entrepreneurial startups, applying his space experience to the business world.
Rachel Cook is the founder and CEO of Seeds, the easiest way to ask the blockchain for help and receive it as a monetary gift - no strings attached. Rachel wants to transcend the broken parts of capitalism, rendering the gatekeepers obsolete.
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.
Stephanie Cummings is the founder of Please Assist Me, an all-inclusive home management app. She is an experienced entrepreneur, business leader, and philanthropist, priding herself in being a minority tech founder promoting the importance of STEM education.
Dawn Dickson is a serial entrepreneur with over 16 years of experience in marketing and business development. She is currently the Founder & CEO of PopCom, an automated retail company that uses facial recognition, A.I, and blockchain technology to help retailers collect valuable customer insights.
Acclaimed global futurist, trendcaster, and best-selling author Dr. Shawn DuBravac sits at the nexus between innovation and disruption. DuBravac delivers pragmatic and provocative insights into the trends, technologies, and paradigms transforming business and society along with actionable strategies organizations in every industry can apply.
Andrew Dunn is on a mission to elevate the human condition by intentionally shaping technology to serve as an agent of flourishing individuals, institutions, and societies. As CEO of Siempo, he helps people build healthier relationships with technology through the first smartphone interface designed to support mental health and wellbeing.
Ugwem Eneyo is co-founder and CEO of Solstice Energy Solutions, specializing in the use of IoT for remote energy monitoring and control technologies. Ugwem’s Nigerian heritage created a strong passion for addressing the challenges and opportunities across the African continent and focusing her research on the nexus of energy, environment, and infrastructure in Nigeria.
Melinda Briana Epler 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 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.
David is the author of Paid to THINK: A Leader’s Toolkit for Redefining Your Future, a work for which he has earned comparisons to Peter Drucker, the father of modern-day management. Considered by some to be the “Thought Leaders’ Thought Leader”, he is known for replacing common leadership thinking with bold, proven, and sometimes counter-intuitive approaches to address leadership challenges and opportunities.
Andrea Guendelman is the founder and force behind BeVisible, the first career social media platform for Latinx. Andrea founded BeVisible after her own experiences as a Harvard-trained corporate lawyer and an entrepreneur. Andrea is considered a thought leader in the topics of Latinx career building and creating diverse workforces.
Cathy Hackl is an Emmy-nominated communicator turned virtual reality & augmented reality global speaker, producer, and futurist. Hackl has been featured in media outlets like Mic, CNN, Silicon Beat, Entrepreneur, CMO.com, Forbes, VentureBeat, and Mashable. She is a global advisor for VR AR Association and a leading voice in the VR AR marketing space.
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.
Jim Harris is one of North America’s foremost thought leaders, management consultants, and authors on disruptive innovation. With 20 years experience as a professional speaker and consultant, Jim Harris speaks internationally at more than 40 conferences a year on and is ranked as one of the nation's top ten speakers by Association magazine.
Harold Hughes is the founder & CEO of Bandwagon – an analytics and identity management company that uses Blockchain technology to help teams & entertainers create more personalized fan experiences while eliminating ticket fraud. He has become a leader in the growing startup community in Greenville, South Carolina, speaking with entrepreneurs, youth, and his peers.
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.
Guy Kawasaki is an 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).
Sky Kelley is the founder & CEO of Avisare, an enterprise software marketplace simplifying the government RFP process to foster an inclusive ecosystem for small businesses. Sky found a need to help non-technology companies use technology to innovate their products and services. Her focus is on making technology simple and user-friendly with the ability to grow the bottom line.
Pierre Khawand has more than twenty years of experience in the software industry. He has helped leaders develop the awareness and behaviors needed to focus on results and develop people in the midst of the information overload.
Tom Koulopoulos is acknowledged as one of the industry’s leading futurists. He is the author of ten books and founder of Delphi Group, a 25-year-old Boston-based think tank, which was named one of the fastest growing private companies in the US by Inc. Magazine.
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.
Josh Linkner, who started his career as a jazz guitarist, has been the founder and CEO of five tech companies, which sold for a combined value of over $200 million. He is also a deeply experienced business leader, venture capitalist, top-rated keynote speaker, and author of four books which include the New York Times bestsellers: Disciplined Dreaming and The Road to Reinvention.
Scott offers an unusual mix of experience, having worked as a research scientist, HR director, business consultant, rock musical producer, writer, keynote and TEDx speaker. His delivery style, which he has developed across the sectors in over 20 years, is humorous, well-crafted, inspiring and direct.
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.
Erica Orange is Executive Vice President & Chief Operating Officer of The Future Hunters, one of the world’s leading futurist consulting firms. She evaluates emerging social, technological, economic, political, demographic and environmental trends – and identifies the strategic implications of those trends for several of the most influential Fortune 500 companies, trade associations, and public sector clients.
Amy Peck is the founder & CEO of EndeavorVR, a leading global VR/AR (XR) strategy & consulting firm. Amy is a recognized thought-leader in the space and speaks globally on the future of XR.
Christie Pitts is an inventor and early-stage investor at Backstage Capital and co-founder of Backstage Studio, currently leading Backstage’s global Accelerator program. She identified a passion for working with early-stage companies while working as Venture Development Manager at Verizon.
Joseph is a thought leader in business agility and uses that expertise to motivate his audience to think of breakthrough ideas in their industries. Integrating startups with legacy corporations, running technology operations for the world’s largest payment processor, building a nationwide franchise organization has given Joseph the breadth and depth required of any executive.
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.
Katica Roy is an ambassador for gender equity in the workplace and beyond. She is a gender economist and the CEO and founder of Denver-based Pipeline, an award-winning SaaS platform that leverages artificial intelligence to drive economic gains through closing the gender equity gap.
Leah La Salla is the Technical Founder & CEO of award-winning Astral AR, a technology startup building drones that stop bullets and save lives. As an inventor, she is best known for “hacking NASA” with a toaster (a toaster-sized neuromechanical unmanned aerial vehicle, that is!). La Salla gained a decade of experience in software engineering while teaching herself to program in an additional 9 languages becoming a polyglot software architect.
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.
Amiah Sheppard is a perpetual learner who currently is the Director of Backstage Accelerator LA. In venture capital, she daily examines the myriad ways founders harness, strategize, and utilize their unique socio-cultural location to get to their desired outcome.
Lolita Taub is a 2-time TEDx Speaker, a World Economic Forum Global Shaper, an enterprise tech professional and an early-stage tech investor. She has a decade-long operator career in B2B Enterprise Tech, Startups, and Early-Stage Venture Capital. Lolita’s interests lie in the creation and commercialization of tech through venture capital.
A professional trend forecaster, speaker, and author, Michael speaks and writes about cracking the code of the future applying his unique framework of Ubertrends — massive waves that are reshaping global behavior.
Kunbi Tinuoye is an award-winning British-born journalist and broadcaster based in the United States. She is the founder of UrbanGeekz, a groundbreaking video-centric African-American, Latinx, and multicultural digital news platform focused on technology, science, business, and startups.
Nicholas Webb is one of the world’s top innovation strategists and futurists. As a professor, successful inventor, bestselling author and world-renowned innovation strategist, Nicholas brings the perfect pedigree and the best research to each and every one of his customized talks on the future, innovation, business, and healthcare.
Jared is Executive Vice President & Chief Strategy Officer of The Future Hunters, one of the world’s leading futurist consulting firms. His work is industry-agnostic, and covers trend activity in the realms of science & technology, economics, politics, demographics and environmental issues.
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.