Startup Weekend Sacramento: Folsom Edition

    Friday, April 12 - 14, 2019

  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 Sacramento: Folsom Edition

Friday, April 12 - 14, 2019

Friday, April 12 - 14, 2019
Event starts at 6:00 pm

Granite City Coworking
705 Gold Lake Dr
Suite 150
Folsom, CA 95630

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Your idea in 54 hours

Entrepreneurship - take it for a spin

Becoming an entrepreneur requires risk. But you, friend, have an incredible opportunity to test drive entrepreneurship risk-free. 

Do you have an idea you’d like to build out? Do you want to meet motivated, talented hustlers like yourself? Startup Weekend is the perfect opportunity to build a company—or at least as much as you can build in 54 hours!

Here are a few things you can ‘test drive’ during Startup Weekend:

    1. The desire to become an entrepreneur—is it more than just a dream?
    2. The idea—can you build it into a viable business?
    3. The startup lifestyle—can you handle a high growth, low structured environment?

Nobody leaves a Startup Weekend empty handed. You’ll come away with new skills, new connections to motivated people like yourself, and perhaps, a startup business! 

Ready? Here are the details. 

What is Startup Weekend?

Startup Weekend is a global grassroots movement of ambitious entrepreneurial minds of various skill sets who are looking to practice and learn the basics of founding and launching a startup venture successfully. It is a unique opportunity to get your startup off the ground, risk free. 

How does it work?

All Startup Weekend events follow the same basic model: 

  • Pitch your startup idea and receive feedback from your peers. Teams organically form around the top ideas (as determined by popular vote).
  • Then, it’s a 54-hour frenzy of business model creation, coding, designing, and market validation.
  • The last part of the weekend is the most intense—teams present their ideas to a panel of judges and after a palm sweating Q & A, the judges pick the top 3 startups (did we mention, the winners get prizes to help launch their startup?).

Who should participate?

We welcome anyone and everyone who has a passion for.. well.. anything! This event is open to anyone who wants to hone their skills in business planning, developing, marketing and design.

What's included in your ticket?

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

Do I need to come with an idea?

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 must 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.

Get your ticket for Startup Weekend Sacramento: Folsom Edition!

Still aren’t sure if Startup Weekend is for you? Ask us anything at

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

No talk, all action!

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Setup for Success Before/After Startup Weekend


Friday April 12th

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

6:30 pm
Dinner & Networking
Eat food, share ideas, practice pitches, get to know fellow participants

7:00 pm
Welcome & Speakers
Review agenda for the weekend and introduce speakers, coaches, and community leaders

7:45 pm
Pitches Start
Optionally line up to give your pitch

8:45 pm
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

11:55 pm
Venue Closes
Time to pack up, head home and get some sleep!

Saturday April 13th

8:45 am
Doors Open

9:00 am
Arrive, simple breakfast & coffee

9:05 am
Begin Work
Teams formed and setting up workspace for the weekend

10:30 am
Coaches Meetings
The first wave of coaches arrives. Coaches help teams one-on-one.They are here to help! They will be around from 10:30-2:00.

12:00 pm

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

3:30 pm
Coach Meetings
Coaches help teams one-on-one. They are here to help! They will be around from 3:30-6:00pm.

6:00 pm

7:00 pm
After-dinner check-in, status reports, call for help

10:30 pm
Finished for the day. You may stay and work as late as the venue will allow

11:55 pm
Venue Closes
Time to pack up, head home and get some sleep!

Sunday April 14th

8:45 am
Doors Open

9:00 am
Arrive, simple breakfast & coffee

10:30 am
Coaches arrive. Final opportunity to ask questions. Coaches will be around until 2:00pm

12:00 pm

4:00 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

5:30 pm
Final Presentations

7:30 pm
Judging, Awards & Wrap-Up

8:00 pm
Go Home


Peichen Chang
CEO and Co-Founder at Engineered Medical Technologies

Engineered Medical Technologies first product, tCheck, is the world's first home herbal infused oil potency testing device. Prior to joining Engineered Medical Technologies, Peichen worked on several other startup ideas, including:  photography, social media, and high speed network testing equipment. They all pretty much crashed and burned. Had he learned about lean startup earlier, he probably could have saved lots of money and time. Most of his career was spent as a cube dweller for large corporations such as Hewlett-Packard, Emulex, and TD Ameritrade, moving from engineering to product management to fully lobotomized sales. He grew up as a DoD brat on the tropical island of Okinawa, Japan before moving to snowy upstate New York for his B.S. in Electrical Engineering at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Afterwards, he went on to Oregon State University for his master’s in business administration and electrical engineering.

Event Judges

Brandon Robinson
Entrepreneur and Investor

Vagabond at heart, entrepreneur by choice, Brandon Robinson is the founder of Skin Body Soul MedSpa, a multi-state, multi unit medical spa business of which he exited to a private equity group of Los Angeles in 2017. He is the Co-Founder of LOMS Investments (Love of Midtown Sacramento) a Real Estate holding company and most recently the founder of Flatstick Pub DOCO, an indoor mini-golf pub sated to open this summer in DOCO Sacramento. He has both boot strapped and raised capital to startup his businesses. He is a member of Sacramento Angels and has invested in local as well as national startups. He and his wife Jennifer live in Downtown Sacramento and operate a travel blog called Roaming Robinsons.

Hemant Vaidya
Professor, UCD Graduate School of Management

Hemant Vaidya, PhD, is currently an independent consultant in the In-Vitro Diagnostics (IVD) space and professor at UCD Graduate School of Management teaching Entrepreneurship and Innovation Management. He has worked in IVD industry for 24 years and in his 14 years as Vice President  of R&D for Siemens Molecular and Microbiology diagnostics business, he was responsible for planning product development from concept to commercialization, including creating the annual operating plan, strategy and a technology road map. He was also part of the team at Washington University that developed the first monoclonal antibody for creatine kinase MB, a biochemical marker for myocardial infarction (heart attack), which was patented and widely licensed in the industry. He is member of the Sacramento Angels and has mentored several entrepreneurs in US. He also mentors entrepreneurs in India through a program at the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad.

Barbara DeHart
Investor and Entrepreneur

Barbara DeHart fell in love with technology early in her life and has spent her career leading technology organizations to bring breakthrough ideas to market.  Creating empowered teams to move products from the idea stage, through development and out to the market is one of her greatest aspirations.  She is most proud of her work mentoring early stage startups and executives. Barbara recently cofounded Sama Learning where they are developing a marketplace for virtual reality courses. Sama is an early-stage company creating game changing, immersive learning solutions.

Coaches and Mentors

Katherine Cota
Executive Director, Carlsen Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship at Sacramento State

Katherine has spent 20+ years working in entrepreneurship and innovation. Now the founding Executive Director of the Carlsen Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship at Sacramento State, Katherine came from the award-winning student program at the entrepreneurial center at the University of Northern Iowa.  At UNI, she directed the entrepreneurial center, taught entrepreneurship, and was UNI’s IP and tech transfer officer. She also managed two equity funds. An entrepreneur herself, Katherine started her first business at just 12 years old.

Jake Elia
Founder, IDEAL

Jake is an entrepreneur and product developer. He’s the Founder and Managing Partner at IDEAL, a startup studio based in Sacramento. Previously he was the Head of Products & Technology at Bamboo Creative, where he lead a team to create digital experiences for clients ranging from local businesses to Fortune 100 companies. Jake started his first business at age 17. Since then he has launched several ventures and numerous digital products. Self proclaimed jack of all trades, his experience ranges from creating brick and mortar restaurants and cafes like Bloom Coffee & Tea to investor backed startups like Snippet App and Booklaunch. He also served as the Entrepreneur in Residence at Hacker Lab where he mentored over 100 entrepreneurs.

Rich Foreman
CTO at Cordico

Rich Foreman is the Chief Technology Officer of Cordico. He led the team that developed the CordicoShield / CordicoFire Wellness App. He leads Cordico's technical operations with over 25 years of experience in leadership, engineering, mobile application development and sales. Rich has a BS in Industrial Engineering from the University of Washington, an MPA from Troy State University and was an officer in the U.S. Navy. Rich co-authored his book, "Tap into the Mobile Economy." Rich's blog was listed in Top 20 Marketing Mobile Blogs of 2014. He has been featured on KCRA3, NEWS10, 1170 Tech AM PowerDrive, Business Radio Money 105.5, SiliconIndia, the Sacramento Business Journal, and the Sacramento Bee. Rich is also the Founding Director of the Sacramento Chapter of Startup Grind and served a term as Utility Commissioner for the City of Folsom. Rich is a regular contributor to and Rich also co-founded Apptology which was acquired in 2019.   

Hemel Gandhi
Sr. Director of Product, CareerBuilder

Hemel leads the global eCommerce product team at CareerBuilder. He enjoys ideating, defining and launching products that customers love and redefine the customer experience. He led product at a mobile device platform startup, Fonjax and has worked with startups in the FinTech, Payments, Education and mobile solutions market. His focus areas are customer research, product strategy, product definition, product launch, product metrics and customer experience.

Josh David Miller
CEO, Mindbox Studios

Josh David Miller is the CEO of Mindbox Studios, where he works with a diverse group of creatives, strategists, investors, and facilitators to help innovators turn ideas into winning businesses.  A serial entrepreneur with a strong passion for hypothesis testing and rapid iteration, JDM leads a team of innovation experts who apply creative problem solving to help entrepreneurs identify and evaluate market opportunities, find product-market fit, and answer key questions about growth and value in the new economy.

Dan Casas-Murray
Founder, The Lean Innovator

Dan is the founder at The Lean Innovator, an organization that helps entrepreneurs locate and engage with their target markets, enabling them to build a customer base before launching a startup. He is also an advisor for the Capital Region Small Business Development Center, and helps clients to employ lean innovation methodologies while getting their businesses started. Dan has experience launching businesses including a $3M wireless Internet Service Provider overseas, that provided internet connections to around 400 people on a military base and three frozen yogurt and cupcake shops in the Roseville / Rocklin areas.

Christine Folck
Program Manager, The Shop @VSP.

Christine is a Senior Design Thinking Specialist with over nine years of experience implementing human-centered design process methodologies, tools and techniques. She is passionate about IHI performance improvement, project management, improvement sustainability, innovation processes, and human-centered project implementation and improvement design. Christine is highly skilled in LEAN, Six Sigma, ethnography, healthcare, business, and facilitation. She’s committed to positively impacting lives, every decision, every day.

Jubal DeLong
Principal Industrial Designer, JDID

With 25 years professional product design and development experience DeLong has served clients, from regional startups to global brands. The resulting portfolio spans a wide variety of demanding consumer and commercial product development projects, from disruptive enterprise solutions to award winning high volume consumer electronics. DeLong’s comprehensive experiences in product development include collaboration and management of multi-faceted projects, carrying hundreds of concepts from whiteboard to mass-production while securing IP and strategic development of global design languages. JDID's work has been recognized for both design and engineering excellence.

Allen C. Archuleta, Jr.
Venture Partner with VU Venture Partners

Allen is a Venture Partner with VU Venture Partners, a $100M Venture Fund based in San Francisco, CA. He has over 13 years experience in entrepreneurship and investing, and is an alumnus of Venture University’s apprenticeship program, where he worked alongside top Venture Capitalists Andrew Zalasin and J. Skyler Fernandes. As a strategy consultant, he has worked with over 100 entrepreneurs, and in 2017 was awarded the Sacramento Business Journals Top 40 Under 40 for his success in driving entrepreneurship throughout the region. Some of his most recent investment include FlowerCo, EnClear, iComply, Amberdata, Picap and AskPorter

Kyle Kaneshiro
Strategic Marketing Manager at Micron Technology

Kyle Kaneshiro is an experienced leader in high tech with expertise in strategic planning, product development, user experiences, new business development, and marketing.  He has over 25 years of industry experience, including Director of Strategic Planning and Client Computing Group Manager at Intel Corporation. Kyle has driven strategies and provided leadership for imaging, 3D video, security, audio, voice recognition, and silicon component/platform planning.  Kyle’s recent activities focused on cutting-edge technology usage efforts, including “No Password” security initiatives and 3D video experiences, which incorporated the use of LEAN methodologies and user experience (UX) testing.

Sonny Mayugba
CMO, Waitr Holdings

Sonny is Chief Marketing Officer of Waitr Holdings, the highly successful mobile on-demand restaurant ordering and delivery company. In his role, he’s has been instrumental in positioning Waitr, which became a public company in 2018, for the national stage. Stewarding the Waitr brand, user acquisition, activation and retention and company revenue growth, Sonny has helped Waitr grow to serve cities in 22 states across the U.S. Sonny joined Waitr through the acquisition of the company he founded, Requested, a software platform that enabled diners to name their own price at restaurants. He is also the Founder/Owner of the popular Red Rabbit Kitchen and Bar, Solomon’s Deli and Tiger Bar.

Kevin Kane
CEO, Linkd

Kevin Kane is the CEO of Linkd, Inc. a project management cloud application utilizing machine learning and artificial intelligence, serving the Architecture, Engineering & Construction (AEC) industry. Linkd’s partners include Google, IBM and Oracle. Kevin’s technology background includes five liquidity events with three Fortune 500 companies (IBM, HP and Trimble) and two Private Equity firms. Kevin’s experience includes transitioning an OTC software company to Nasdaq and has served on non-profit and for-profit advisory boards contributing to two (for profit) liquidity events by CA Technologies and Dominion Enterprises.

Event Sponsors, and Partners

The Startup Weekend Sacramento: Folsom Edition 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 Sacramento is 100% led by volunteer community leaders.
Learn how to get involved here

  • Jaimie
  • Alina
  • Arwa
  • John
  • Laura
  • Jeff
  • Peggy
  • Mandie
  • Alicia


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.

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