Startup Weekend Fort Lauderdale

    Friday, February 1 - 3, 2019

  1. Overview
  2. Schedule
  3. Speakers
  4. Judges
  5. Coaches and Mentors
  6. Sponsors
  7. Organizing Team
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Startup Weekend Fort Lauderdale

Friday, February 1 - 3, 2019

Friday, February 1 - 3, 2019
Event starts at 6:00 pm

Broward College Downtown Campus
111 East Las Olas Blvd
Fort Lauderdale, Florida 33301

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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 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 “”.

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

No talk, all action!

Thank You Yolofsky Law Firm for the incredible prize package. 

Grand Prize: (estimated value $10,000)

Preparation of entity documents or review of documents if already established
Preparation of a sales or service contract
Preparation & counseling for a buy-sell agreement;10 hours of legal consulting 

Second Prize: (estimated value $5,000)
Preparation of entity documents or review of documents if already established
Review of a sales or service contract
5 hours of legal consulting 

All Participating Teams: Certificate for 10% off a LIFT deep dive
Registration on our website and confirmation of participation in Startup Weekend required

See what it's all about

Learn More


Friday February 1st

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

7:00 pm
Dinner & Networking
Eat food, share ideas, practice pitches, get to know fellow participants

7:30 pm
Welcome & Speakers
Review agenda for the weekend and introduce speakers, coaches, and community leaders

8:00 pm
Pitches Start
Optionally line up to give your pitch

8:30 pm
Attendees vote for the top pitches

9:00 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 February 2nd

9:00 am
Arrive, simple breakfast & coffee

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

12:00 pm
You reached the half way point. Take a break restore your energy.

1:00 pm
After-lunch check-in, status reports, call for help

2:00 pm
Coach Meetings
Coaches help teams one-on-one. They are here to help!

3:00 pm
Snack Attack.
Refresh, refuel, reboot.

7:00 pm
Share a great meal with your team or new friends.

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

9:00 pm
Finished for the day. You may stay and work as late as the venue will allow

Sunday February 3rd

9:30 am
Arrive, simple breakfast & coffee

11:00 am
F6S Registration

12:30 pm

12:45 pm
Coach Meetings
Coaches arrive… ASK QUESTIONS

2:00 pm
Presentation Prep & Tech Check
Final hours of worktime should be focused on perfecting your presentation, tech-check for final presentations also takes place

4:15 pm
Final Presentations

5:00 pm
Enjoy dinner while Judges decide your fate.

5:30 pm
Judging & Awards

6:00 pm


Jan Bednar

Jan founded ShipMonk in 2014 to change the way ecommerce companies manage their supply chain and ship orders to their customers through game changing software, automation and exceptional service.

Jan’s passion for problem solving, operations and technology has enabled him to bootstrap and build ShipMonk into what it is today. 

In just a little over 3 years, Jan led ShipMonk from $0 to over $30,000,000 in annual recurring revenue, 3 locations around the world and over 120 exceptional, full time employees. All without external funding. 

ShipMonk is currently helping over 1,000 ecommerce companies to deliver over million of their amazing products every month to their customers around the world. 

Originally from the Czech Republic, Jan moved to the U.S to go to school with a dream of starting his entrepreneurial journey at the age of 17. After a few failed businesses, Jan founded ShipMonk after graduating from Florida Atlantic University in 2014. 

*#29th fastest growing company in the U.S. 2018 (INC 5000)
*Cover of Forbes Mag CZ February 2018
*Forbes 30 Under 30 2018 U.S.
* Forbes 30 Under 30 Czech Republic
* Tedx - Speaker
*Tech Runway 2014 Graduate

*** Featured in Forbes, INC MAGAZINE, TechCrunch, WSJ,, Miami Herald, South Florida Business Journal, SunSentinel

Jan loves to travel, play ice hockey, crossfit, martial arts, adrenalin sports (skydiving, paragliding, kitesurfing, canyoning etc.) and anything else that gets the blood flowing.

Event Judges

Mike O'Donnell
Advisor and investor |

Michael's career spans 30-years as a venture-backed entrepreneur, author, and advisor. His expertise is starting, funding, buying and selling businesses. He founded Ask-Me Multimedia (acquired by Midisoft), (ongoing), (ongoing), and Leaves, Inc., among other companies. He was on the launch teams of CompuServe Sprynet, one of the first national Internet Service Providers (went public as part of CompuServe in 1996), and Design Intelligence (acquired by Microsoft). 

Michael has raised more than $50M in venture capital and has orchestrated numerous company spin-outs, acquisitions and successful exits. He is an active angel investor and advisor, with investments in numerous early-stage companies. He has run an international high tech accelerator, a federally-funded entrepreneurial training program, and a venture capital fund. As the founder/CEO of, he has assisted more than 25,000 startups with strategy, financing and exits. He is the author of several best-selling books and a popular blogger and speaker on starting, buying and selling a business. Connect with Michael on Linkedin:

Dr. Lascelle Sweetland

Managing Director and founder of Laspainc Consulting. Assisting companies in the United States and abroad in entering or expanding into markets throughout North America, Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean, Europe, Africa and the Middle East. Offering new product, business development, market research, feasibility studies, market analysis and selection, market entry strategy, international lead generation, partner search, brand development, overseas marketing, promotion, public relations, product launch and trade show support services programs in the Continental US, Latin America and the Caribbean. Founder of The i-LAB Startup Foundation which provides support in the areas of academic outreach, venture capital engagement, workforce development, connecting business and government, and cross border collaboration focused on improving consumer experience through disruptive innovation. A program to incubate the creation of more than 100 startups a year.

Tim Hasse
Co-Founder of General Provision Co-Working

Serial Technologist Timothy Hasse is the Principal of Trim Agency, a South Florida-headquartered tech firm that develops high-concept applications for web, mobile, and social experiences. Timothy has spent his entire career in design and development of interactive digital solutions.

Hasse leads an innovative team of creatives, developers, and strategists that have served brands, agencies, and startups alike to take digital ideas from concept to creation. Trim has developed enterprise solutions for mature companies, and has ideated, built, and launched scalable applications for startups in the partner capacity. As a full service agency, Trim has created digital solutions for some of the country’s most recognizable brands.

Prior to founding Trim Agency, Hasse served as Global Marketing Director for Mile Marker International, a lifestyle brand in the automotive after-market. Hasse created an award-winning, in-house marketing department through a “digital first” strategy that transformed a fledgling family-business into a publicly traded, global brand and market leader.

Most Recently, Hasse founded Fort Lauderdale’s first co-working and Tech-Incubation space, General Provision, with the goal of accelerating the creative and tech communities of South Florida. Aside from providing a collaborative space for entrepreneurs, creatives, and technologists, the space is also the home to Broward County’s first independent programming academy, aiming to feed the South Florida tech ecosystem with new developer talent.

Timothy is an emphatic supporter of agile project management and open-source technology.

Mylene Garot
Chief Operations Officer at VIAC Luxury Real Estate

A dedicated professional with 7+ years of experience in management, business development 3+ yearsin real estate and marketing. 5+ in sales. Specializes in initiating strategies to maximize profit andimprove branding.

Coaches and Mentors

Mark Tietbohl
Strategic Project Manager | Management

Currently serve as a part time Instructor in the Integrated Marketing Communications Master’s
program at West Virginia University (Mobile Marketing and Web Analytics/SEO), an Adjunct
Professor (part time) at Lynn University and a self-employed consultant and project manager.
Projects include market diligence and discovery and development of go-to- market strategies.
- Acted as an “intrapreneur” at Lowe’s Companies Inc. for 9+ years designing and launching new
programs, including establishing communications and support infrastructure, go-to- market
strategies, ongoing marketing efforts and obtaining financing.
o Acted as the project manager for the Installed Services group on the launch of Lowe’s
and the program into Canada.
o Also served as one of the key business leads on the omni-channel integration initiative
for the last 3 years
o Worked on the In-Home Selling Program, Centralized Project Management and other

- Have worked extensively with start-ups and early stage companies in technology, services and
manufacturing in cooperation with state and university funded agencies, as well as venture
capital, private equity and angel groups.
o Focus of work was aimed at uncovering growth, partnership and go-to- market strategies
with the end goal of building actionable growth plans and value propositions.
o This period included a one-year stint as interim CMO of a fledgling CPG company.
- Formerly an innovative entrepreneur in the direct mail industry (12+ years). Build a company
focused on fulfilling A/B/n tests for major marketing firms using direct mail.
Areas of Expertise:
- Strategy Development and Implementation
- New product and service development, rollout and commercialization
- Direct Sales and relationship development
- Ability to work successfully with start-up and early stage firms, as well as mature organizations.

Kartik Rallapalli
Ceo and Founder

Kartik is an entrepreneur, solutions architect and mentor.

He founded Travelastic, a SaaS solution for tour experts.
 As a solutions architect, he converts business ideas into software design.

He has over 20 years of  programming experience across multiple technologies. Worked extensively in cloud architecture, networking, security and high availability implementations. He lead and delivered multi-million dollar projects for fortune 100 companies. Also recruited and managed development teams for these companies.
 He has bachelors in Electrical and Electronics engineering. He is a technology evangelist and loves to motivate startups and guide them.

Mylene Garot
Chief Operations Officer at VIAC Luxury Real Estate

A dedicated professional with 7+ years of experience in management, business development 3+ yearsin real estate and marketing. 5+ in sales. Specializes in initiating strategies to maximize profit andimprove branding.

Nicholas Tomlinson

Nicholas Tomlinson is a co-founder for Miami based startup Travelastic - a marketplace for tour operators that empowers its users to boost sales and expand their network.

Previously, Tomlinson was the Director of Technology at Metropolitan International School of Miami (MET), where he developed an interactive curriculum for more than 200 elementary and middle school students. Prior to joining MET, Tomlinson was an assistant producer for various documentaries featured on national cable networks, such as WLRN, National Geographic, Smithsonian Network, and the Discovery Channel. He has a passion for technology, the environment, and the education of today’s youth and is trained in geographic information systems, computer programming, and UX design.

Tomlinson received his bachelor's degree from the University of Florida. He also took part in Harvard’s CS50X computer science course at Miami-Dade College thanks to a scholarship provided by the Knight Foundation. He is a lifelong student, mentor, and educator. Tomlinson is a team player with a strong work ethic and an entrepreneurial spirit. 

When Tomlinson is out of the office, you can find him on a soccer field or at the beach with his dog, Oynx. 

Maria Rivera
Multicultural Research Strategist

María draws on a diverse background in Data Collection, Research Design, Operations, Team Building and Inclusive Leadership. She describes herself as an adaptive leader who embraces the challenges and gains associated with diversity of thought and team collaboration.
With keen interest in Human-Centered Experience Design, María also brings broad industry knowledge: 25+ years of experience leading national research studies among the US Hispanic population – serving in various roles from Project Management Lead at Simmons Research to Digital Research Director at Experian Consumer Insights.

Passions: People, Technology and Research – in that order. Always people first.

In my case, the most edifying form of education stems from collaboration, and through authentic connections with people – from homeless to CEOs.
I am immensely grateful for knowledge shared at co-working spaces, meet-ups, and cafés. My growth is largely influenced by family, respected leaders, mentors, millennials and future leaders.
BS and MBA completed at two dual-language universities. Certified Scrum Master by top tier Agile coaches.
Design Thinking learned at Harvard – Division of Continued Education.
2019 – Currently working on a Master of Science in Health Informatics at University of Miami.

Favorite quote:
- Peter Druker

Charles Schwartz

Charles Schwartz is an independent wealth consultant and speaker based in Florida. He has spent his entire career building businesses from scratch, and flipping businesses into multi-million dollar empires.

Charles has conducted numerous successful persona and finance workshops nationwide, and travels the entire country to conduct personal coaching sessions with his US-based clientele. His clients come to him to master the same skills that helped Charles retire at 36 and made him a millionaire at 37. Allowing his clientele to focus on real change through human behavior, systematization, and passive income creation.

Charles has been invited as a speaker by the United States Coast Guard, The American Heart Association, and lectured at Yale University. He attended the prestigious Harvard Business School, previously known as HBX, to perfect his mastery of the art of negotiation, and further imparts his knowledge to others through personal coaching.

Today, Charles splits his time between managing his businesses and coaching.  

Tangy Frederick
Founder & Software Engineer @ Creative Dev Software| CTO Govlia

Co-Founder & Lead Software Engineer at Cre8tive Devs Software, Tangy Frederick started a career as an Assistant Editor for Television and later had a successful career as a Lead Generation Marketer. She took her passion as a self-taught programmer to the next level, by attending Broward College to obtain a degree in Programming and Analysis. In college she fell in love with programming languages like Java and C++, developing Mobile Apps, Desktop Apps, Websites building Databases and programming the Nao Robot. Her and her team of Engineers develop Mobile Apps, desktop apps, Websites, use Machine Learning and future technology to help clients bring their ideas to life.

Before transitioning to become the Co-founder of a Software Company, Tangy interned at The Urban League of Broward County, helping Entrepreneurship Center with their website. Working at The Urban League of Broward County, gave Tangy the support and the courage to start her own Software Company. To help business and to help improve the job market.

With 3 programming hackathon wins under her belt, she decided to combine her talents and to put them to good use. Tangy wrote a book for Programmers titled, The Journey Of A New Programmer (, released on Amazon in 2018 . Her goal is to reach out to the community of Entrepreneurs and individuals, encouraging them to become more involved in technology as leaders. While developing software for Socially Conscious business.  

Jonathan Fichman

Jonathan Fichman is currently a venture advisor and mentor with several South Florida startup accelerators and universities. During his career he has mentored, founded, and/or managed over 60 startups.

Jonathan has extensive international and domestic experience in building businesses within diverse industries of public, private and non-profit organizations. Jonathan has a demonstrated history of increasing revenues and operational efficiencies along with providing great strategic advice wherever he has worked.

Also, Jonathan is a board member of a NASDAQ listed company serving in the Audit, Compensation and Nominating/Governance Committees.

Currently, Jonathan is engaged in assisting companies with mentoring, strategy, capital raising, partnerships, streamlining operations, sales, proprietary financial modeling and many other key tasks in the development of a new business. Also, Jonathan is currently an adjunct professor at Florida International University Business School with a focus on international management & entrepreneurship courses.
During a decade at Bank of America/Merrill Lynch, Jonathan successfully led many international corporate initiatives, including setting up a fixed income trading desk in the Asia Pacific region. Additionally, he integrated and divested businesses for the global wealth management division, and implemented key revenue accelerators for financial advisors.
With the Township of Cherry Hill New Jersey, Jonathan authored a statewide purchasing card manual and implemented procedural guidelines which streamlined the efficiency of day-to-day municipal-operations.

While at Actrade Financial Technologies, Jonathan created
B2B banking products that were at the forefront of commercial payments. He also obtained multi-million-dollar evolving credit facilities, and developed a web-based processing mechanism for short-term borrowing. Additionally, Jonathan created a global marketing campaign that focused on banking and non-banking financials.

On Wall Street, with the Carson Group, Jonathan captured Fortune 100 companies as clients, and served as their senior analyst and advisor. The main company focus was in the transportation section. With his pulse on the market, Jonathan aligned clients with large investors (buy side) and stock analysts (sell side), to introduce a company’s stock, evaluate overall stock and corporate financial performance.

He earned his MBA in 2006 from The University of Miami and a B.A. degree in Social Sciences, in 1994 from George Washington University. Also, Jonathan has trained and received a certification in mentoring from Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s (MIT) Venture Mentoring Service.

Event Sponsors, and Partners

The Startup Weekend Fort Lauderdale 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.

Prize Sponsorship

Venue Sponsorship

Community Partners

Organizing Team

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

  • Marc
  • JC
  • Edouard


Aiko Cheslin

CEO and Founder of MentorMatter, proud winner of GoCode Colorado and Co-Organizer of Denver New Tech, Meteor Boulder and Pitch Camp  

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