Startup Weekend Louisville #8

    Friday, March 11 - 13, 2016

  1. Overview
  2. Schedule
  3. Speakers
  4. Judges
  5. Coaches and Mentors
  6. Sponsors
  7. Organizing Team
  8. Blog
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Startup Weekend Louisville #8

Friday, March 11 - 13, 2016

Friday, March 11 - 13, 2016
Event starts at 6:30 pm

University of Louisville College of Business
Harry Frazier Hall
110 W. Brandeis Ave.
Louisville, Kentucky 40292

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You + Startup Ideas = Action

Join over 100 people March 11th - 13th as we gather to share startup ideas, pick the best ones and see how far we can take them in 54 hours.  Learn how to vet your idea, gain initial customers and then present to seasoned business professionals to walk away with a once in a lifetime experience.


Friday March 11th

6:30 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

7:20 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
Attendees vote for the top pitches

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

10:00 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 March 12th

9:00 am
Arrive, simple breakfast & coffee

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

9:30 am
Customer Discovery Workshop

12:00 pm

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 from 2 - 6.

6:30 pm

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

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

Sunday March 13th

9:00 am
Arrive, simple breakfast & coffee

10:00 am
Coaches arrive. Final opportunity to ask questions

12:00 pm

12:30 pm
Coach Meetings
Coaches arrive… ASK QUESTIONS

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

7:30 pm
Judging & Awards

8:30 pm


Steve Huey

Event Judges

Stacy Griggs
President & CEO, El Toro

Moses Icyishaka
Analyst, Chrysalis Ventures

Jackie Willmot
CEO & co-founder, XLerateHealth


Coaches and Mentors

Bob Saunders
General Partner, OCA Ventures

 Bob is a General Partner of OCA Ventures (Chicago), a Founding Partner of Saunders Murdoch and Associates (Louisville/Boston), and is an active investor in many healthcare startups.  Bob was a Managing Director and General Partner at Chrysalis Ventures from 1997 to 2009. Bob was a founding board member of MetaCyte Business Lab, the University of Louisville’s life science incubator. Over the last 30 years, he has invested in several dozen startup companies and has mentored 100+ startups. Bob received a B.A. from Stanford University, an M.Sc. from the London School of  Economics, and an M.A. from Harvard University. He was both a Fulbright Scholar and a Marshall Scholar. 

Rider Rodriguez
Director of Sector Strategies at KentuckianaWorks

Rider Rodriguez is the Director of Sector Strategies for KentuckianaWorks - Greater
Louisville’s Workforce Investment Board. In addition to helping local companies find a 
skilled workforce, he is starting and leading initiatives like Code Louisville to close the  Louisville area’s skill shortage in information technology and Louisville Sells to provide a trained and ready sales workforce. Prior to this, Rider was a technology project manager with Humana. Rider served as a Signal Officer in the United States Army for nine years to include service in Afghanistan. Rider’s experience includes technology project design, strategic planning and workforce development. He holds a BA in Political Science from Rutgers University and he is pursuing a Master’s degree in Technology Entrepreneurship from the University of Maryland, College Park.

Thad Druffel
Founder and Technical Adviser at Bert Thin Films, LLC

Jeremy Sublett
Managing Partner at Composable Systems

Lisa Bajorinas
Director, Kentucky Innovation Network

Lisa Bajorinas is the executive director of EnterpriseCorp, an entrepreneurial support organization serving the Louisville region.  Lisa is responsible for the development of innovation-driven, technology based companies through client services including capital access, talent attraction, key strategic introductions, and business coaching. She creates and directs programs, workshops, and events that add to the culture of Louisville’s vibrant startup community.  Lisa is also the Executive Manager of the Enterprise Angels, a Louisville-based angel investor network comprised of high net-worth individuals actively seeking investments in well vetted, investment grade deals. Under her leadership, the (former) High Impact Program, focusing on fast growth companies, received the U.S. Economic Development Administration’s Excellence in Economic Development Award, was a finalist for the CoreNet Global Economic Development Leadership Award, and received Honorable Mention from the International Economic Development Council’s Excellence in Economic Development Award.  Lisa’s career began in the online travel industry in Miami through successive positions in technology, software project management, and marketing and eventually led her to a product marketing role in Silicon Valley with BroadVision while managing a global team of software developers located in Nice France. She holds a B.A. in organizational psychology and an MBA, both from the University of Miami (FL).

Brittain Skinner
Assistant Director at Kentucky Innovation Network, EnterpriseCorp

John Williamson
Health Information Systems Product Manager

Rachel McGalliard
VP of Operations, The Software Guild at The Learning House

Event Sponsors, and Partners

The Startup Weekend Louisville #8 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.




Organizing Team

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

  • Austin
  • Daniel
  • Greg
  • Greg
  • Eric
  • Kelby
  • Adam
  • Paul
  • Jacy
  • Zack


Michael Norton
Entrepreneur In Residence

Michael has led over 60 Techstars Startup Weekend events throughout the US, Canada, and Australia. He teaches workshops, designs programs, and speaks on a variety of topics related to innovation and entrepreneurship.

Michael has worked professionally in marketing technology startups, with big data, non-profit fundraising, customer support systems design, technical project management, educational program development, event production and decor, iOS app design, video games, user testing, prototyping, and in the coffee industry.

His own past and present business ventures include several SaaS web app platforms, photography, woodworking, printing, audio engineering, video production, musical composition/recording/performance, publishing, art curation, operating an Amazon Pro Merchant storefront, and a funnel cake stand.

Michael guides innovative communities to build and nurture regional entrepreneurial ecosystems. He guides corporations through internal innovation and intrapreneurship. 

He frequently works as a freelance business development consultant, crowdfunding guru, technical project manager, and as a marketer — focused on branding, messaging, storytelling, social media, and email marketing.

Michael loves hiking in Yosemite, bicycling around San Diego, eating authentic Baja California Mexican food, and drinking amazing coffee in Seattle.

Event Staff

Suzanne Bergmeister
Entrepreneur In Residence

Suzanne Bergmeister has eighteen years of experience working with entrepreneurs and start-up companies.  She is currently the Entrepreneur-in-Residence at the University of Louisville.  In this capacity, she teaches across all the UofL MBA programs including the nationally-ranked Entrepreneurial MBA Program, and the undergraduate Entrepreneurship Minor.  She also teaches two electives in the MBA program:  New Ventures and Social Entrepreneurship.  In addition, Suzanne teaches an engineering entrepreneurship elective and Entrepreneurship-600, an entrepreneurship elective open to any graduate student at the University.  She also mentors the MBA and undergraduate Business Plan Competition teams.  Suzanne formerly worked in the Private Equity Industry for Fort Washington Investment Advisors, and as a Venture Capitalist with Blue Chip Venture Company in Cincinnati and Chrysalis Ventures in Louisville. In 2004, Suzanne founded Sunflower Business Ventures Inc.  Sunflower specializes in business consulting and management, education and training, and angel investing activities.  She founded the Sunflower Seed Funds as an investment vehicle for not-yet-accredited investors.  Suzanne has a BS in Electrical Engineering from Rutgers University, an MS in Electrical Engineering from California State University and an MBA from Cornell University, concentrating in Finance. Suzanne is the Chair and former President of Venture Connectors (formerly the Venture Club of Louisville).  She serves on the Board of Directors of the Community Foundation of Louisville, Algood Food Company and several start-ups.  She is also on the Advisory Board of Greater Louisville Inc’s Enterprise Corp.  Suzanne is a Business Coach in the Launch-It Program, a 10-week Entrepreneurship Boot Camp.  She is active with the Leadership Louisville organization and is a graduate of Focus Louisville (‘02), Leadership Louisville (‘05), and Bingham Fellows (’07, ‘16).  Colonel Bergmeister is a retired Air Force reservist with 30 years of service.  She began her Air Force career at Edwards Air Force Base in California where she was an Avionics Flight Test Engineer on the B-1 Bomber and the B-2 Stealth Bomber, and taught Electronic Warfare Testing at the Air Force Test Pilot School.  As a reservist, she was assigned to the AF Academy in Colorado Springs, CO, where she was the National Training Director for the entire Admissions Liaison Officer force.  Suzanne currently lives in the St. Mathews neighborhood of Louisville, KY with her cats, Lola and Vivian, and her dog, Toby Keith.  Suzanne’s son, Karl is an Ensign in the United States Navy.  

Event Blog

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