Techstars Startup Weekend Long Island

    Friday, November 17 - 19, 2017

  1. Overview
  2. Schedule
  3. Judges
  4. Coaches and Mentors
  5. Sponsors
  6. Organizing Team
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Techstars Startup Weekend Long Island

Friday, November 17 - 19, 2017

Friday, November 17 - 19, 2017
Event starts at 6:00 pm

LaunchPad Huntington
315 Main Street
2nd Floor
Huntington, NY 11743

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Build a Business in Just a Weekend!

What is Startup Weekend?

Have you ever seen a new product, app, or business and thought to yourself, "that was my idea a few years ago"?  If you have, that means you did not have a process for taking that idea from concept to creation.

Startup Weekend is your chance to learn how to take any idea from concept to creation within a matter of days!  Whether you are looking to...

  • get introduced to the world of startups and entrepreneurship
  • learn the process for going from concept to creation
  • meet experienced, talented, and passionate entrepreneurs
  • join or build an all-star team
  • learn and practice new skills to take back to your job or
  • take your own idea from concept to creation

Who is Startup Weekend For?

It doesn't matter what you do or where you come from, Startup Weekend is designed as an inclusive event and program that brings all sorts of people together including...
  • aspiring & experienced entrepreneurs
  • developers and other tech-related professionals
  • designers of all types
  • non-technical talent (i.e. business, sales, finance, legal, etc.)
  • students from colleges, universities, and even high schools
  • professionals looking to switch careers or build new skills
  • passionate visionaries
  • and many more!
Your ticket includes:
  • Access to the full weekend-long event
  • Opportunity to pitch your idea on Friday night @ Pitch Fire
  • Mentoring by all-stars from the tech startup community
  • Tasty meals all weekend
  • Collaboration with awesome technical professionals
  • All-star judges panel lead by startup leaders
  • Membership in the Startup Weekend Community (>200K alumni)
  • A process for taking any idea from concept to creation in a matter of days, and
  • Over 50 awesome new friends!
  • Scholarships Available! Can't afford a ticket? Apply here for a scholarship.
Do I need to come with an idea?

If you have an idea for a startup, then great!  We hope you pitch for the weekend.  If you don't have an idea, that's quite all right!  Come and spend the weekend, listen to the ideas being pitched, and see if something strikes your interest!  The weekend is all about learning about the startup ideation process and from your peers.  If you have more questions, check out the Startup Weekend First Timers FAQ!

Come join us for a very special weekend!

Contact us with any questions or requests at

See what it's all about

Learn More


Friday November 17th

6:00 pm
Doors Open

6:30 pm
Arrive at the venue and check in

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

7:20 pm
Startup Weekend Kicks Off!
Introductions, pitches, voting, and team formation.

10:00 pm
Finished for the day. Go home and get some sleep.

Saturday November 18th

8:30 am
Doors Open & Breakfast
Arrive, bagels & coffee

9:00 am
Saturday Morning Kick-off!
We'll go over your weekend mission, the process, and share resources and best practices.

10:00 am
Identify and State the Problem
Teams will spend the next 2 hours focusing on the problem their team is solving.

12:00 pm
Problem State Check-In
Teams will meet with mentors to get feedback on the problem identified.

12:30 pm

1:30 pm
Mentor Madness
Mentors will be on hand to meet with teams, by appointment, until 6pm. Schedules will be posted.

6:30 pm

7:00 pm
Deep Work Block
Teams will have a couple of hours of totally uninterrupted time to work.

9:15 pm
Doors close
Go home and get some sleep. You worked hard.

Sunday November 19th

8:30 am
Doors Open

9:00 am
Arrive, simple breakfast & coffee

10:00 am
Pitching Workshop
Learn how to pitch your idea from The Pitch Doctor, Craig DiFolco

11:00 am
Coach Meetings
Coaches arrive… ASK QUESTIONS

12:30 pm
Grab and Go Lunch

1:30 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

7:30 pm
Judging & Awards

8:30 pm

9:00 pm
Go Home!

Event Judges

Dave Calone
CEO of Jove Equity Partners

Dave Calone is the CEO of Jove Equity Partners LLC, a venture capital firm that invests in and helps build technology companies in the internet, software, digital media, energy, real estate, transportation and health care industries. He serves as a director of nine privately-held companies located throughout the country and is a co-inventor on twelve issued U.S. patents relating to internet messaging and to optimizing medical treatment based on comparative treatment effectiveness data. He helped organize the recently formed bipartisan Congressional Caucus on Innovation and Entrepreneurship in the U.S. House of Representatives through which he has been a leading advocate for federal policies that promote the creation and development of start-ups and other small businesses. He is the co-founder of the newly launched Long Island Emerging Technologies Fund, which creates and provides seed funding for early stage technology companies on Long Island. He has served as a founding mentor for the Techstars' Patriot Boot Camp which helps veterans from around the country start technology-based businesses.

Keith Engley
VP Business Banking at Capital One

Keith is a financial professional currently working at Capital One Bank. He specializes in relationship management & business lending on Long Island and New York City.

Felix Fan
Business Relationship Manager Officer - JPMorgan

Jesse Honigberg
Chief Digital Officer for Sterling National Bank

Jesse Honigberg is Chief Digital Officer for Sterling National Bank, a nearly $30 billion regional bank located in the Greater NY Metro area. Over the last four years Sterling has grown over 800% through a series of acquisitions and robust organic growth.  Jesse joined Sterling in 2002 and has held  several strategic roles including Corporate Development Officer, Chief Information Officer and Head of the Enterprise PMO and has been a key voice in several transformation initiatives.  Currently Jesse is responsible for all digital and core client touchpoints including the development and launch of Sterling’s new online banking platform.  Jesse’s industry speaking engagements primarily focus on the challenges of digital transformation in banking and achieving merger efficiencies in a changing environment.

Mark Lesko
Executive Dean

Mark Lesko is the former Executive Director of Accelerate Long Island, a collaboration of Long Island research institutions to accelerate the formation of a regional innovation-based economy. As Executive Director, Mark oversaw the $1 million Accelerate Long Island Seed Fund/Long Island Emerging Technologies Fund that invested in nine technology-based startup companies. Under Mark’s leadership, Accelerate Long Island also offered mentorship support for startup companies and engaged in a variety of activities that supported the growth of Long Island’s entrepreneurial ecosystem. Prior to joining Accelerate Long Island, Mark Lesko was the Supervisor of the Town of Brookhaven – New York State’s second-largest Town with 486,000 residents – for over three years.

Rosemarie Tully

Rosemarie Tully is an attorney concentrating in entertainment, music, motion picture, copyright, publishing, and corporate/business law, with clients ranging among authors, composers, screenwriters, producers, record labels, artists, actors, sound studios, and distribution companies. Her clients include inductees in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Grammy Award recipients, award-winning Film Producers, published authors, and major league sports figures.

Julie Benlevi-Zeff
CEO & Publisher

Julie Benlevi-Little is the Founder & CEO of Blinked, the world’s most powerful platform for recommendations. Prior to starting Blinked, Julie founded the recommendation e-zine, which was acquired by publishing house, Modern Luxury Media in 2008. She has been a guest speaker at New York University's Stern School of Business and has been featured in various business publications including The New York Times, The Financial Times, The Washington Post, and The Wall Street Journal.

Coaches and Mentors

Joe Balcuk

Joe Balcuk's journey started about 15 years ago when he completed his degrees in mathematics and spent the next 11 years teaching it to middle and high school students. There he learned what is fun for kids and adults alike and applied it to algorithms for games. He can  quickly analyze, summarize, and project data to “connect the dots” within game play.

His specialties include algorithm writing, logic generators, game development (themes/story lines/designs), and betting mechanics.

Christopher Fasano
Manager at EisnerAmper LLP

Christopher Fasano is a Manager in the Private Business Services Group. He specializes in compilations, reviews, and tax preparation for private companies.

Judi Hays
Chief Digital Strategist, Smart Dog Digital

Judi Radice Hays helps companies execute strategy to generate magnetic content that gets brand awareness and meaningful growth through engaged social media.  She works with businesses to demystify the challenges and overwhelm of effectively using online platforms. Prior to launching her marketing consultancy, she was Vice President of Marketing for the Austin Chamber of Commerce where she worked with many entrepreneurs and emerging startups. Judi is also a published author. You can her on Twitter at @askjudihays

Andrew Hazen
Serial Entrepreneur

Andrew Hazen is a serial entrepreneur and active investor, has been developing and branding successful businesses for more than twenty years. He has extensive knowledge and experience in all Internet marketing matters, website optimization and social media marketing. Andrew is the Founder & CEO of the startup accelerator Angel Dough Ventures, Andrew is also the Co-Founder & CEO of LaunchPad, an incubator, business accelerator and coworking community in Mineola, Huntington, Great Neck and Stony Brook.

In 2008 Andrew’s book, "Search Engine Optimization: Plain & Simple," was published and he has been recognized as a leading search engine marketing expert on the A&E Biography Channel and Fox Business News.

Jon Klein
Co-Founder & President of Kantian Skincare

Jon Klein is co-founder and president of Kantian Skincare, LLC. He is focused on creating and implementing marketing and business development initiatives to continually drive company growth. Jon is an entrepreneur with expertise in e-commerce, direct response marketing and online marketplace channels including He is experienced with customer acquisition and retention via online media channels: social media marketing, search engine marketing (paid & SEO), e-mail marketing, and online display advertising.

William Lieberman
The CEO's Right Hand, Inc

William Lieberman is an experienced founder/entrepreneur, CEO, and CFO. This breadth of experience has enabled him to critically assess the key drivers of success – from strategy and tactics, operations, finances, and human capital – to craft and help implement plans to transform businesses.

Because he has played many different leadership roles, from Chairman and CEO to CFO/CAO, and has grown companies from the ground up, he understands the critical importance of managing the variety of constituents that are involved, either directly or indirectly, in a company’s path to success.

Chris Lopinto
Travel Expert, Founder, Advisor, Investor

Chris Lopinto is a serial entrepreneur and angel investor. Since founding ExpertFlyer in 2004, Chris Lopinto has been a pioneer in providing airline data transparency to consumers.  Prior to ExpertFlyer, Chris founded, built, and then sold an IT consulting company in Long Island New York. Prior, he served as the Director of IT at ProductivityNet, a network management software startup. Chris is a graduate of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.

Paul Lipsky
Creative Director, MindYolk Technical 3D Animation Studio

Paul Lipsky is the founder of MindYolk Creative Studio and brings with him more than 25 years of professional experience in the field of visual communications. After earning a Master of Fine Arts degree at the School of Visual Arts, he began working for several prestigious video postproduction companies in Washington, D.C., and in New York City. He has successfully provided creative direction and advanced animation expertise to such clients as the National Institutes of Health, HBO, Grey Advertising, MSG Network, CBS Sports, and to TV programs such as The McLaughlin Group, America’s Most Wanted, and Inside the NFL. This expertise has won him such industry awards as the National Telly Award, the Medical Illustrators’ Award and the BDA Broadcast Designer Award. In addition to his professional career Lipsky has taught in higher education for over 15 years at NYU, St John University and currently teaches at Hofstra University. He has been invited to lecturer internationally in Taiwan, China, London, Jamaica, and South Africa. He helped write a new and innovative 2 and 4 year degree in Interactive Computer Graphics for Five Towns College which launches in September 2018.

Varun Mehta

Varun is the founder of Disqovery, an app that actually makes career development fun and engaging. He received his MBA from HBS in 2013.

Before attending HBS, he worked at Microsoft, first as a software developer on Microsoft Mediaroom, then as a program manager for Microsoft App-V. He has a lot experience working on large, interdisciplinary teams, delivering great software for both consumers and large enterprises. He has had to work very closely with customers to understand and respond to their needs, and stay abreast of changes in rapidly moving fields

Peter Papagianakis
Managing Member at Business Law Firm LLC

Peter Papagianakis is an attorney whose 20+ year legal career has focused exclusively on advising entrepreneurs and business owners with the various contracts, transactions, and related issues that arise during all stages of the business cycle.

Barbara Roberts
Entrepreneur in Residence, Columbia Business School

Barbara Roberts got her start on Wall Street and was the first women to hold numerous senior positions in IPO marketing and securities research. She concluded this chapter as the first woman to serve on Dean Witter's Board of Directors. After Wall Street, she transitioned to entrepreneurship. As President of the stock photography agency, FPG International (now Getty Images), she championed the use of non-white models in commercial photography and received the Business Enterprise Award from President Clinton. Following the sale of FPG, she lead and built the museum audio tour company, Acoustiguide. She currently serves on the NY Suffolk County Planning Commission and previously was Chair of the Advisory Board of the Federal Reserve Bank of NY.

Natasha Roman
Manager and Consultant at EisnerAmper LLP

Natasha Roman is a Manager in the Consulting Services Group. She serves a diverse client base from start-up entities to Fortune 1000 corporations with particular experience in SOX and performing audits of internal control over financial reporting. Natasha also has experience in audit for real estate, not-for-profit, and commercial entities, as well as employee benefit plans.

Tyler Roye

After co-founding and growing, Inc., one of the first and most innovative Managed Service Providers (MSP) in the country, Tyler and team successfully sold the fast-growing venture-backed company in 2007. The company was a pioneer in what has today become the cloud services megatrend.

In his current role as CEO of eGifter, Tyler has resumed his growth-oriented leadership style of orchestrating idea-flow into actionable plans.  Self-employed his entire career, Tyler thrives on competition and drives hard, enjoying every minute of the game. A Long Island native, Tyler has always made community a priority. Tyler is a founder and Vice-Chairman of the Long Island Software and Technology Network (LISTnet), and also a founder of LaunchPad Huntington.

Gus Spathis

Gus Spathis is the founder & CEO of The Xogito Group, a product development and management consulting firm, focused on startups, business transformation and advisory services in emerging technologies. Gus serves on a number of corporate and non-profit advisory boards and generously donates his time assisting early stage entrepreneurs. Gus’ career spans over 30 years, managing businesses and building award-winning teams and technology. He has focused on making entrepreneur’s visions become reality by solving difficult problems efficiently and creating breakthrough solutions. As an entrepreneur himself he has participated in founding over a dozen different companies. He is a sought after advisor by venture capitalists, angel investors, and private equity firms. Most recently Gus launched Xogito Ventures, focused on angel investments in a variety of companies and funds.

Donna Zincone
Senior Manager at EisnerAmper LLP, Private Business Services

Donna Zincone is a Senior Manager in the Private Business Services Group, with more than 25 years of experience. She provides a broad range of expertise that includes employee benefit plan audits, accounting services, tax return preparation and planning, payroll and sales tax reporting, insurance analysis, and preparation and review of financial statements.

Event Sponsors, and Partners

The Techstars Startup Weekend Long Island 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.




Food & Beverage Sponsors

Audio Sponsor

Health & Wellness Sponsors

Startup Partners

Organizing Team

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

  • Aaron
  • Phil


Roger Osorio
Entrepreneurship Program Leader @ IBM

Entrepreneurship program leader at IBM by day, math coach by night, and Startup Weekend global facilitator by weekend.  I deliver a powerful cocktail made up of education, psychology, neuroscience, leadership, and entrepreneurship.  I facilitate events to maximize the experience and learning for all participants.

Event Staff

Corey Stary
Enterprise Partnership Manager @ DailyPay

Ross Palley
Biz Consultant @ Eze Software Group

All-star biz consultant and Startup Weekend organizer.

Craig DiFolco
The Pitch Doctor

Craig, The Pitch Doctor, is a public speaking and media coach dedicated to the art of narrative, film & video, and communication. Since receiving his MFA from Columbia University, he has served as a presentation coach for over ten years, as well as a producer for Sunnyside Films.

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