Startup Weekend Boulder, Food+Tech!

    Friday, May 17 - 19, 2019


  1. Overview
  2. Schedule
  3. Speakers
  4. Judges
  5. Coaches and Mentors
  6. Sponsors
  7. Organizing Team
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Startup Weekend Boulder, Food+Tech!

Friday, May 17 - 19, 2019



Friday, May 17 - 19, 2019
Event starts at 6:00 pm

New Hope Network
5541 Central Avenue
Boulder, CO 80301

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Your idea in 54 hours

Do you have an idea you'd like to pursue or a problem you'd like to solve but don't know where to start or who to start with? 

Techstars Startup Weekend is the place to look for a team, create a prototype of your idea, validate your business idea, and receive feedback from experienced entrepreneurs, all in one weekend.

What's is "Food+Tech" all about?

This weekend will be all about the intersection of Food, Agriculture, Technology, and Sustainability. If we intend to feed a population of 9 billion people by 2050, then we need to start thinking about how to make our food system more sustainable and more efficient. Technology with play a key role along the entire value chain - agriculture/production, distribution, processing/manufacturing, retail and CPG, and waste. We need entrepreneurs from various backgrounds working together at the intersection of food, agriculture, and technology to help build a better future! Here's a great blog post on a few ideas in this space.

What do you need to bring?

Lots of energy! You'll pitch your own idea or listen to others, then vote on the most interesting ideas and form teams with diverse skill sets. You can come with friends, but you’ll get the full experience if you participate in separate teams. Remember, it’s all about the team.

Your idea should be something you have not previously worked on. The idea you pitch and the problem you set out to solve can span social, educational, financial, environmental, or other issues. Over the course of the weekend you'll be challenged to create a prototype of your MVP, or minimum viable product, that fits the needs of your target customer. You'll get feedback, iterate, and likely pivot your approach entirely! Important: You cannot have worked previously on your idea.

Techstars Startup Weekend is a full weekend long experience. Your ticket includes:

  • 7 full (and delicious) meals over the course of the weekend
  • Benefits and discounts from our global partners
  • One-on-one time with amazing mentors
  • A new network of developers, designers, and entrepreneurs eager, like you, to change the world.
  • All the internet and coffee you can consume.

Watch the video below to see what you can expect, and if you’re feeling inspired click on the “Buy Ticket” button now!

Still have questions, feel free to reach us at “boulderfood@startupweekend.org”.

Don’t wait any longer and join the Techstars Startup Weekend movement!

No talk, all action!



See what it's all about

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EVENT SCHEDULE

Friday May 17th


6:00 pm
Registration
Arrive at the venue and get checked in


6:15 pm
Dinner & Networking
Eat food, share ideas, practice pitches, get to know fellow participants


6:30 pm
Welcome & Speakers
Review agenda for the weekend and introduce speakers, coaches, and community leaders


7:30 pm
Pitches Start
Optionally line up to give your pitch


9:00 pm
Voting
Attendees vote for the top pitches


9:15 pm
Form Teams
Teams start forming and discussing ideas


9:30 pm
Begin Work
Start to formalize teams and take an inventory of skills. Be honest, and direct about what resources and skills are needed for the weekend. You may stay and work as late as the venue will allow

Saturday May 18th


9:00 am
Breakfast
Arrive, simple breakfast & coffee


9:30 am
Begin Work
Teams formed and setting up workspace for the weekend


10:00 am
General Mentor Meetings
guiding the teams on honing their idea, identifying opportunities and threats in their product concept. This morning is the first chance for each team to get together and hash out their thoughts following the pitches from the night prior.


12:00 pm
Lunch


2:00 pm
Mentor Office Hours
This mentor session is open to the teams, but not required. You’d be here, readily available to offer more feedback, but it is up to the team if they want to seek out your wisdom and advice.


6:30 pm
Dinner


7:30 pm
Check-In
After-dinner check-in, status reports, call for help


10:00 pm
Wrap-Up
Finished for the day. You may stay and work as late as the venue will allow

Sunday May 19th


9:00 am
Breakfast
Arrive, simple breakfast & coffee


10:00 am
Mentor Pitch Coaching
Mentors meet with the teams and help them finalize their concept and streamline it so that it’s ready to pitch. Mentors will help teams understand the best way to communicate their idea to the panel of judges, prepare for potential questions.


12:00 pm
Lunch


3:00 pm
Presentation Prep & Tech Check
Final hours of worktime should be focused on perfecting your presentation, tech-check for final presentations also takes place


5:00 pm
Final Presentations


7:00 pm
Dinner


7:30 pm
Judging & Awards


8:30 pm
Wrap-Up


9:00 pm
Go Home!



Speakers


Jane Miller
CEO @ Lily’s Sweets

Jane Miller is a 30-year food industry executive with experience working with start-
ups and Fortune 500 companies. She is also the founder of Janeknows.com, a career
advice website geared towards young leaders starting their careers.
Jane is currently the CEO of Lily’s Sweets and has held several other CEO roles in the
natural and organic industry, including Rudi’s Bakery, ProYo High Protein Ice Cream
and HannahMax Cookie Chips. Over the course of her career, Jane was part of an
executive team that brought Hostess out of bankruptcy, worked for HJHeinz as the
Chief Growth Officer and then the President of the UK & Ireland Division, and she
ran the Western division of Bestfoods Baking. The first fourteen years of her career
were at PepsiCo, where she rose to be the President of the Central division of Frito-
Lay.
Jane currently serves as a board member at the University of Colorado Leeds
Business School and Eldorado Springs Artesian Water along with advisory roles
with Alpine Start Foods and New Zealand Trade and Enterprise.
Jane has a Russian Studies degree from Knox College in Galesburg, IL, where she
received a 2017 Alumni Achievement Award, and an MBA from Southern Methodist
University in Dallas, TX.

Event Judges


Carlotta Mast
SVP of Content & Insights @ New Hope Network, Informa Global Health & Nutrition Network

Carlotta leads the New Hope Network Content Team, producing all content and conference programming for Natural Products Expos, NBJ Summit, Esca Bona, Natural Foods Merchandiser, newhope.com, Nutrition Business Journal, the NEXT portfolio and Delicious Living. In addition she is the chief author of the NEXT Natural Products Industry Forecast. With 20 years of experience, Carlotta has her finger on the pulse of new health, wellness and natural product trends and the forces shaping consumer attitudes and behaviors. Carlotta is a frequent speaker at industry events and conferences and has been interviewed about the natural products industry, regulatory issues and market performance by media outlets including The New York Times, Cosmopolitan, NPR, ABC News, BusinessWeek and many others. In 2013, Carlotta co-founded a paleo snack company called Wholly Bites, which hit the market well before Whole Foods Market and other retailers began adding paleo sections to their stores. A Colorado native, Carlotta is the president elect of Naturally Boulder, as well as a Board member, and communications co-chair. Naturally Boulder is a trade group with the mission of nurturing community, leadership and innovation in the Colorado natural products industry. Carlotta graduated from Northwestern University with a degree in Journalism.


Colin Ferrian
Co-founder & CEO of deepgreen

Colin is co-founder and CEO of deepgreen, a software company developing computer vision for agricultural equipment. Before starting deepgreen, he was advising equipment manufacturers on partnerships and investments with emerging software companies, and prior to this, a technology analyst at an investment fund. Outside of the office, Colin can be found riding, watching, or daydreaming about bicycles.


Saba Karim
Pipeline Manager @ Techstars

Techstars is the worldwide network that helps entrepreneurs succeed, at which Saba Karim is the Pipeline Manager, helping source 450 companies per year for their 45 accelerators. Prior to Techstars, Saba helped launch and scale a number of startups over the past 11 years, including Evolve (Acquired by Hubspot), Orai App (Backed by Comcast), and Wattle Cafe (Artisan Australian Cafe in the heart of New York). Saba has also worked with world-renowned organizations such as Harvard University, Apple, Nokia, Universal and Telstra Corporation – and has his work published on CNN, VentureBeat and GQ.
 
Saba is passionate about startups and disruption. Seeing motivated founders challenging the status quo and making meaningful innovations is why he mentors all sorts of companies in his spare time, from challengers banks, to non-profits, and organic matcha companies.


Sabrina Kelly
VP, People Operations @ Techstars

Talent & Culture. Acquisition & Retention. Keeping tight-knit teams knit-tightly. Passionate aboutbuilding amazing teams that accomplish incredible things; driving innovation through talent acquisition, retention and development


Coaches and Mentors


Alicia Potter
Founder & Creative director of Faven Creative

Alicia is the founder and creative director of Boulder-based, Faven Creative specializing in branding and packaging design for natural CPG brands.  Alicia has nearly 2 decades of branding experience working at large firms like JWT and SRG before founding Faven in 2013. She approaches design through a strategic lens giving every element of a brand objective meaning and purpose. She strolls through grocery stores as if they are the latest art galleries and constantly strives to find inspiration in unlikely places.   When she’s not in the office, you’ll find her at home trying new dishes her kids may or may not eat, or scratching her traveling itch on her next family adventure.


Cambria Jacobs
General Manager @ Oh My Green

Cambria Jacobs is currently the General Manager for the Bay Area based health and wellness company, Oh My Green.  Previously, she served as the vice president of Marketing and Customer Service at Door to Door Organics, a leading online grocer that delivered fresh organic, natural and local food to homes, offices and schools in 11 states and 30 cities throughout the U.S. Jacobs is known for building strong B2B and B2C ecommerce marketing teams, and passionate brands, launching media programs that result in targeted pick up, optimizing critical customer acquisition funnels, and leading aggressive expansion plans. In 2014, Jacobs was named one of Progressive Grocer's Top Women in Grocery and Door to Door Organics was named to the Inc. 500|5000 list, an exclusive ranking of America's fastest-growing private companies. 


Christopher Uhlig
CEO @ Ceres

Growing up in Germany and coaching the German National Youth Team in American Football, Chris won the European Championship twice with that team. His coaching experience spilled over into the job world, where he spent nearly 20 years in the software industry in different sales, pre-sales and consulting roles. There, Chris created presentations, spoke at public events, and distilled technical details down to simple messages for potential customers while coaching people and leading teams. He gathered his experience on three different continents, growing up in Europe, spending 3 years in HongKong and arriving in the US in 2006.
Chris joined Ceres in an advisory role in 2016 and full time in 2018. During this time Ceres has grown at a pace of over 200% per year. He found his passion in the sustainability aspect and the growth potential in disrupting a stagnant greenhouse market. A big part of Ceres' success is the team culture, innovate approach and focus on customer success.


Eric Bruno
Founder- Brunos & Partners

Eric is an independent contractor/hired gun specializing in brand development, marketing strategy, consumer insight and how to keep his son from playing Fortnite on school nights. At some point in the mid-nineties Eric graduated from Oklahoma City University, eventually winding his way to graduate school at Northwestern University in Evanston, IL where he earned a Masters in Integrated Marketing. Although he spent several decades working for some of the biggest agencies on the world’s biggest clients, he’s now focused on atoning for those years by working with startups, mentoring entrepreneurs, and teaching classes at the University of Colorado, Leeds School of Business. For his own inspiration, Eric spends a disproportionate amount of time running the trails and riding the canyons in and around Boulder, CO… where he still has not run into a bear or mountain lion… not yet anyway.


Eric Pierce
Vice President of Business Insights @ New Hope Network

Eric J. Pierce is a strategic marketing and market research professional who brings business management experience and consumer behavior perspectives to his work. Specializing in helping businesses develop strategy and identify and prioritize opportunities; Eric is sought after as a speaker at industry events and for corporate training.
Eric's passions lie in the intersection of consumer behavior and business strategy within the Natural Products industry. These passions are focused on helping companies navigate the dynamic and changing food system, helping to re-imagine brands, inspire product innovation, and focus business investments with an eye towards meeting the needs of the food-forward consumer.
At The New Hope Network Eric and his colleagues and sit at the forefront of the Natural Products industry, well positioned to identify the cultural forces and trends creating opportunity in this exciting and evolving marketplace. Together we help companies large and small identify, prioritize and take advantage of opportunities in the evolving food economy.


Ethan Hirshberg
Founder, Ethan's

Ethan was born on Stonyfield Farm in New Hampshire and raised by two organic food entrepreneurs.  As a kid growing up in the natural products industry, he came to understand the impact that delivering real, delicious and organic products to people can have on their health and happiness. With his team at Ethan's, he launched his brand with a very simple goal: To make products that taste great and are great for you. Learn more at www.ethans.com.


Francine Schoenwetter
Director Content Marketing, Supply Chain Solutions, New Hope Network & Informa Global Health and Nutrition Network

Devoted to the Natural Products Industry since before it was called the NPI. With deep roots in the mission based natural consumer products world, Fran's experience encompasses retail leadership, wholesale brand management and work directly with product development supply chains. Today Fran focuses on putting all of this industry muscle to work, connecting ingredient suppliers and product innovators via unique and engaging content, providing strategic business intelligence and tactical know-how for manufacturers focused on doing well while doing good.


Janna Czepiel
Designer @ Interact


Janna is part of the spirited design team at Interact, a strategic branding and packaging agency specializing in food and beverage. Interact believes in being the most obsessed, meaning every team member is completely obsessed with all things food and beverage. Janna’s expertise is in helping brands tell stories through design. She believes that design is one of the best communicative platforms and the strongest brands always have a distinct message to share with the world.


Jeff Schmidgall
Co-Founder & CEO at Bubba's Fine Foods

Jeff is the co-founder and CEO of Bubba’s Fine Foods, creators of Grain-Free snacking alternatives to Chex Mix, Doritos and granola... using savory kettled-cooked banana chips and real-food spices.  Located in Loveland, CO, Bubba’s was started in 2014 and is sold nationwide in 1,800 retailers and on various e-commerce outlets. Coming from an industrial machinery background, Jeff has been on a steep and exhilarating learning curve of the CPG food industry. He loves to help fellow food revolutionists with all the lessons learned along the way.


Jenna Blumenfeld
Senior Food Editor @ New Hope Network

Jenna Blumenfeld is the Senior Food Editor for New Hope Network, where she reports prolifically on burgeoning natural food and beverage trends, ethical ingredient sourcing, regenerative agriculture and global supply chains for Natural Foods Merchandisernewhope.com and Nutrition Business Journal. On her weekly online gallery series “Unboxed," Blumenfeld reviews the newest natural products before they hit store shelves—and identifies which foods and beverages will resonate with consumers. Jenna’s greatest wish is to participate in cultivating a food system where everyone has access to healthy, sustainable food—and to one day develop an app that feeds you fresh-from-France croissants, instantly.


Jodi Feinhor-Dennis
CEO @ Missy J’s Snacks + Treats

Jodi spent decades saying “I can’t eat that” because of her own dietary sensitivities to chocolate, dairy and sugar. In a personal quest for a “better for you” option, she launched Missy J’s, a vegan carob candy company in 2011. Her dedication and innovation in the kitchen, pushed her to create the best “chocolate like” candy on the market without all the refined sugar, dairy and caffeine found in most candy.  Sweetened only with coconut sugar and free from caffeine, dairy, gluten and GMOs, Missy J’s is the leader in carob based treats, and can be found in natural products grocery stores nationwide.


Jon Baker
Managing Director at Alpine Modern

Jon is the Managing Director of Alpine Modern, a specialty coffee shop and cafe with two locations in Boulder, Colorado. Jon has spent the last eight years leading and growing multi-unit bakeries and cafes. As Managing Director of Alpine Modern, Jon is responsible for overseeing every aspect of the business with a focus on driving future growth in Boulder, Denver and beyond. 


Lindsey Cunningham
Co-Founder & CEO @ RollinGreens

Lindsey and her husband founded RollinGreens a Boulder-Based food truck in 2011. They took one of their top selling appetizers Millet Tots to the freezer isle in 2015. Millet Tots are currently in 1,000 retailers and various food service accounts. 


Matt McDermott
Founder & CEO @ Greatful Foods

Mark is founder of Greatful Foods LLC, a management consulting firm serving the consumer products industry. Throughout his 30 years of international marketing and general management at multinational companies (Coca-Cola, Sara Lee Coffee & Tea, Gerber, Nestlé Nutrition, Novartis) and entrepreneurial start- ups in the food & beverage, pharmaceutical and advertising industries, Mark has transformed numerable nascent opportunities into sustainable, multimillion-dollar businesses. Mark has created new brands, products and services in markets across North America, Latin America, Europe, Asia, Middle East and Africa; from start-up to $30 million, to $50-$100M high growth, and to $1B global businesses. Mark has a BA in Economics from Denison University and an MBA from The Darden School of Business at University of Virginia. He and his wife, Susan, recently moved to Boulder from Switzerland and have hopped right into the community; Mark is on the Advisory Board of Boulder Sun LLC, member of Naturally Boulder and a mentor at CU Boulder. Fun fact : Mark was previously King of the Circus for Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus.


Michael Memsic
Co-Founder, CEO @ Sanitas Brewing Company

Michael didn’t always want to be a brewer. In fact, when he was a kid, Michael was dead-set on playing baseball for the Oakland A’s. But after a string of injuries and a strong dose of reality, our boy Memsic came to terms with the fact that he may not be destined to go pro. It was in college that Michael began experimenting with what would soon become his lifelong passion: brewing. And as the story goes, what started as a hobby soon evolved into an obsession. ​ During his time at the University of Colorado in beer-loving Boulder, Michael carved out time between classes and powder days to work at the town staple Oskar Blues Grill & Brew. Following graduation, he took over as a brewer at Boulder Beer where he would spend several years developing creative beers and chasing his dream of opening a production brewery of his own.


Pat Hughes
VP Commercial Operations at Sunrise Strategic Partners

Pat Hughes is Vice President Commercial Operations at Sunrise Strategic Partners, which provides growth capital and expertise to emerging brands in the healthy, active and sustainable living space.  Pat works with Sunrise’s portfolio companies in functional areas such as marketing, sales, and operations.  He also is responsible for originating and performing due diligence on Sunrise’s investments. Prior to Sunrise, Pat held brand management and marketing positions at Boulder Brands, working across a portfolio of brands that included EVOL, Udi’s Gluten Free, Glutino, Earth Balance, and Smart Balance.  Before Boulder Brands, Pat served with distinction in combat in Afghanistan as a U.S. Marine Corps officer with 1st Reconnaissance Battalion.  Pat received a Masters of Business Administration from the University of Colorado Boulder Leeds School of Business.


Randy Jensen
Technical Account Manager, Google

Front end developer turned serial entrepreneur, Randy founded VerifyMyBnb, DwellWell, and Pop Box. He's led front-end development for a $1B startup and took over Product at an enterprise SasS startup. Currently at Google helping support large-scale publishers like New York Times and Reddit.


Robbie Vitrano
CEO @ Good Spread

Robbie is a designer who works as a ceo, investor, and mentor.  His focus is on high impact, profitable, social innovation—working through the food system, e-commerce, and media.  He manages his holdings through portfolio company Innisfree.
He is ceo/co-founder of Good Spread, an organic food brand that activates solutions to the global malnutrition crisis (1 billion starved, 2 billion obese) through the $10 billion nut butter market, transparency and integrity in the supply chain, advocacy and adventure.  Good Spread was launched from a non-profit that makes a nutrition-fortified peanut butter-based treatment that has a 96% cure rate for the chronic disease of severe acute malnutrition (SAM, the leading cause of death among children globally).  Good Spread engages the market — as part of a global ecosystem of organizations working to eliminate severe malnutrition — to fund millions of lifesaving treatments for children around the world.
 
Robbie is a serial entrepreneur, co-founding international healthy fast casual franchise Naked Pizza, social entrepreneurship accelerator The Idea Village, brand studioTrumpet, and natural food+e-commerce media company Natchcom.  Naked Pizza was sold to Mark Cuban in 2012.  Both Trumpet and Naked Pizza were named Fast Company’s “Most Innovative Companies in the World.”  He is on the board of Tulane’s Goldring Center for Culinary Medicine, the New Orleans Culinary & Hospitality Institute.  Innisfree holdings include Natchcom, Trumpet, Porchjam Spirits, Uncanny full-spectrum hemp-derived CBD, and better-for-you fast casual concept Freedom Pizza.
 
Robbie splits his time between the food epicenters of his hometown New Orleans and Boulder with his wife of 31 years, artist Patricia Duffy Vitrano.


Ryan Woltz
CEO @ ēdn

Ryan Woltz is founder and CEO of ēdn, a consumer product company on a mission to change the way people experience nature. An alumni of Techstars and Shark Tank with a background in engineering and horticulture, Ryan is a technically focused project management professional.


Sam Kressler
Principal @ Stir Consulting

Sam runs Stir Consulting, an innovation strategy and product development firm serving the natural foods, culinary, and food service industries. Prior to Stir, Sam spent several years at Boulder Brands where he oversaw commercialization for all Evol, Glutino, and Udi’s innovation and renovation projects. Before joining Boulder Brands, Sam worked as a chef in San Francisco and Manhattan. Additionally, Sam attended the French Culinary Institute in NYC and holds a Masters in Food Systems from NYU.


Wendy Lu McGill
Founder/CEO @ Rocky Mountain Micro Ranch

Wendy Lu McGill has a background in sociological research in international development and intercultural communication, bringing a global perspective and deep understanding of the why and how of farming insects for food. Working for nearly a dozen years with UN agencies helping them communicate to internal and external stakeholders about complex topics such as human trafficking, water and sanitation and rural infrastructure development, she has transitioned to create a holistic approach to business development and sales, fostering partnerships and deep relationships.


Event Sponsors, and Partners

The Startup Weekend Boulder, Food+Tech! team is grateful for the support of local community partners without whom this event would not be possible.
Learn how to become a sponsor here.


Signature Sponsors

New Hope Network is at the forefront of the healthy lifestyle products industry. With solutions for the complete supply chain from manufacturers, retailers/distributors, service providers and ingredient suppliers, the network offers a robust portfolio of content, events, data, research and consultative services.

Visit Website

Gold

Silver

Food Sponsor

Swag Sponsor


Organizing Team

Techstars Startup Weekend Boulder is 100% led by volunteer community leaders.
Learn how to get involved here

  • Joseph
    Matta
  • Chris
    McGurrin
  • Jordan
    Rothenberg
  • Dan
    Nguyen
  • Jenna
    Bee
  • Ted
    Bellinger

Facilitators


Sibi Murugesan
Program Director @ gener8tor


Sibi has been building companies and supporting entrepreneurs for years. After helping lead Co-lab, a nationally-recognized startup incubator for students, Sibi became a 
Startup Mentor for Junior Achievement, a global entrepreneurship program for students K - 12.  

In a corporate setting, he served as the youngest Senior Strategy Development Analyst within Best Buy's Strategic Growth Office, where he identified, built and launched $1B growth strategies for the Fortune 100 technology retailer. 

At his day job, he is currently the Program Director for gener8tor, a nationally-ranked startup accelerator, where his portfolio companies achieve ~9 months of growth in just 12 weeks. And on the weekends? He's a Program Facilitator for Startup Weekend, traveling the country helping talented entrepreneurs build businesses in just 54 hours!


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