Startup Weekend Santa Barbara #6

    Friday, November 9 - 11, 2018

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

Friday, November 9 - 11, 2018

Friday, November 9 - 11, 2018
Event starts at 6:00 pm

THE SANDBOX Santa Barbara
414 Olive Street
Santa Barbara , CA 93101

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Pitch.. Build... Launch... Network... Learn!

What a great event!  Thanks to everyone that participated, mentored, judged, spoke and sponsored!  

Best Overall: Risk Benefit
Best Green Business: Eco Hero
Best Local: Popup Santa Barbara
Best Platform: WeConnect
Best Social Good: Teach Around

See you at the next Startup Weekend Santa Barbara!


Calling all Santa Barbara innovators, entrepreneurs, designers and developers, or anyone looking to test their ideas, connect and network with the Santa Barbara business community… Startup Weekend is back. On November 9, 10 & 11 THE SANDBOX Santa Barbara will host a community focused event to develop business ideas that solve problems, create innovative products, and launch new businesses, while allowing participants to learn methods to help create successful businesses with the help of local companies mentors and experts.

How does the event work?
Business ideas are presented Friday night, and participants and attendees vote on their favorites to continue. After the ideas are picked, teams form and ideas are worked on throughout the weekend. On Sunday teams present their new businesses and a working prototype in front of a panel of judges. The event also includes talks, this year from Yulun Wang, Chairman, Founder and Chief Innovation Officer at InTouch Health and Andreas Forsland, Founder and CEO of Cognixion, a company whose initial product SmartStones was created at Startup Weekend Santa Barbara in 2014.

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!

Student Discount Codes
Full time students can pick their school or program to get 50% off a ticket.  
Be sure to bring your Student ID to the event on Friday night to complete your registration.  This tickets are full full time students.  If you are employed , please purchase a full price ticket... or better yet, get your employer to sponsor the event and your ticket!

Colleges and Universities
Technology Management Program at UCSB - TMP50
UCSB (General) - UCSB50
Santa Barbara City College - SBCC50
Cal Lutheran - CLU50

High Schools
Dos Pueblos - DPHS50
San Marcos - SMHS50
Santa Barbara - SBHS50

Don't see your school listed above?  Send us an email at and we'll get a promo code set up for you!

See what it's all about

Learn More


Friday November 9th

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

6:00 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

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 November 10th

8:00 am
Arrive, simple breakfast & coffee

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

11:30 am
Mentor Introduction
Coaches help teams one-on-one. They are here to help!

12:15 pm

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

6:00 pm

7:00 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. We'll be open all night for those that want to stay!

Sunday November 11th

8:00 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

6:00 pm
Final Presentations

7:30 pm
Judging & Awards

8:30 pm

10:00 pm
Go Home!


Yulun Wang
Founder of InTouch Health and Computer Motion

Dr. Yulun Wang is a serial entrepreneur working at the intersection of healthcare and technology, an inventor and the founder of Computer Motion and InTouch Health. 
InTouch Health is a pioneering and market-leading telehealth company that enables clinical care at a distance. InTouch has received Deloitte’s Technology Fast 500 Award and Inc Magazine’s Inc 500 award as one of the fastest growing companies in America. 
Dr. Wang has received multiple awards including UCSB’s Entrepreneur of the Year award as well as an Ernest & Young Finalist for Entrepreneur of the Year. 
He has appeared on the the Today Show, Good Morning America and CNN. He received his Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering specializing in Robotics from the University of California, Santa Barbara and has since served for many years on the Advisory boards of both the Electrical and Computer Engineering, and the Mechanical Engineering Departments. 

Dr. Wang is author to more than 50 technical publications and inventor on over 100 patents. Dr. Wang was elected to the National Academy of Engineering in 2011, and served on the NAE Peer Committee from 2012 through 2015.  In 2017 he received the IEEE Medal for Innovations in Healthcare Technology.

* * *

Yulun will be speaking Friday night.

Andreas Forsland
Founder and CEO of Cognixion™

Andreas is the Founder and CEO of Cognixion™ a company building AI-powered software that enables people to control mobile and AR applications with brainwaves and other biosignals. 

Cognixion has been internationally recognized for its innovation and use of exponential technologies to solve a social and healthcare global challenge - affecting the lives of 370 million people unable to speak. Cognixion has won the prestigious Roddenberry Prize, the Gold Edison Award for Social Impact, the Global Elevate Award and the Singularity University Global Grand Challenge for Education for its potential to impact over a billion lives.

Cognixion is located in Toronto Ontario and Santa Barbara California, and builds technology solutions that elegantly blend the power of artificial intelligence (A.I.), neuroscience (BCI) and augmented reality (AR).

Prior to founding Cognixion, Andreas envisioned and grew remarkable design teams at Citrix, Philips Electronics, Progressive Insurance, IBM and has pioneered innovative solutions that have disrupted markets and created new categories across consumer digital lifestyles, mobile communication, and healthcare, improving lives and revenues.

Andreas has also spoken around the world on topics of innovation, transforming healthcare, universal design and most memorably, the ‘Future of Communication’ at the Library of Alexandria, Egypt to an audience of over 1000 Muslim IEEE member engineers, inspiring collaboration and unity through new methods of communication.

* * * 

Andreas will be speaking Sunday Evening.

Event Judges

Karla Mora
Founder & Managing Partner

Founder and Managing Partner of Alante Capital, a venture fund investing in innovative companies that radically improve economic, environmental and social sustainability across the textile and apparel industry. 
Previously, Karla was Investment Director at VilCap Investments, and Lead Facilitator at Village Capital working to support FinTech and HealthTech startups strengthen their models and prepare for investment. She has a Master's in Development Economics from the University of Rome and Certificate of Financial Management from Cornell University. 

Susan Block
CEO and Strategic Advisor

Susan Block has founded three firms, one of which she took public and sold for $290 million.  She was also an investment banker in mergers and acquisitions and IPO's for many years at a large investment bank.  Furthermore, her boutique investment banking firm, has coached investor presentations and entrepreneurs for over 20 years working closely with venture capitalists and other investors, and has served as a Judge for numerous investor presentation competitions across United States.

Leonie Mattison
Director of Organizational Transformation & Leadership, County of Santa Barbara

I am a transformative, relational and pragmatic organizational development and training leader with extensive experience elevating enterprise leadership and maximizing the employee experience for clinical research organizations, through dynamic learning strategy, tools and processes. I have driven a multi-entity career spanning nonprofits, government and private sector companies. I influence organizations to adopt a learning culture, building operational effectiveness across disciplines and levels. I develop working partnerships with senior management, business leaders, and community stakeholders to identify strategic needs, engage resources and design optimal solutions. I’m adept at leading concurrent projects, teams and initiatives, impacting up to 23 departments, 4,700 employees and 8.4 million constituents. I have successfully administered budgets and funding awards up to $45 million. I employ and continuously improve learning management systems, data tracking tools and reporting to ensure programs achieve targeted objectives.

My success is driven by my commitment, collaborative nature, analytical abilities, determination to achieve deadlines and strategic acumen. I enjoy building organizational capability and engagement through learning programs and leadership development.

Krista Treide
Chief Brand & Marketing Officer • Entrepreneur • Philanthrocapitalist • Speaker

Executive leader and brand provocateur with demonstrated success designing, operationalizing and scaling brand, product, innovation, technology and consumer & cultural strategies, fueled with a deep passion for purpose-driven business. Broad expertise in identifying and directing new business.

Luca Foschini
Cofounder, Chief Data Scientist at Evidation Health

I develop technology to improve people's health.

Coaches and Mentors

Mary Anne Masterson
Principal, Masterson Strategy

I work with senior executives, leading design firms, and founders to bridge design innovation and business strategy to find growth opportunities. 

I've led product and strategy initiatives for companies like Microsoft, SK Telecom, Intel and Jarden, and I've worked with leading design and innovation firms, including Frog Design, Adaptive Path, and Intentional Futures. 

I've spent my career seeking that sweet spot between smart strategy and brilliant design - connecting the dots between product development, user experience, strategy and leadership.

Recent focus areas include: virtual and augmented reality, mobile gaming, wearables, the future of education, and the Internet of Things.

Kevin Parent
Inventor and Entrepreneur

Kevin is an inventor and an entrepreneur. His lifelong passion for "storytelling with technology" began at MIT while studying Physics and working in the Media Lab. His passion continued through a decade at Walt Disney Imagineering designing theme park attractions. Kevin founded and ran a series of companies including The Wheel ThingOblong Industries, and most recently Conduce.  Along the way, Kevin received patents on a number of inventions.  Kevin now lives the dream in Santa Barbara and works as a consultant to various industries.

Brian Fox
Co-Founder, Orchid Labs

Brian J. Fox, Kano.ONE Founder, is a serial entrepreneur, technologist, investor, and musician. Brian was the first employee of the Free Software Foundation and the creator of Bash, a key component of every modern operating system, and used by millions of developers world wide. He has founded many successful companies including Orchid Labs. He has raised capital from tier one venture capitalists including Andreessen  Horowitz, Sequoia Capital, DFJ, and others.  Brian is active in the open source election system community.

Aleqwel Mendoza
Designer, Publisher, Producer, Creative Director, Serial Entrepreneur

Aleqwel Mendoza was born and raised in Santa Barbara, California. He has been producing, directing and designing various forms of media since 1986. His professional media positions include serving as publisher of Home & Office Magazine, Senior Designer of Inside Design Communications, and art director for San Francisco Nose magazine. Additionally, Mendoza co-founded Tarzan Studios "Electronic Jungle,” well known as one of San Francisco's first, award-winning multimedia companies.

Mendoza has been a featured panel speaker at many information design and new media development conferences, including the Jackson Hole Wildife Film Festival where the panel consisted of representatives from National Geographic, Discovery Channel, Time-Warner, 3DO, WGBH, GTE and the BBC discussing issues of interactive content development and media integration for natural history producers.

In other speaking engagements, Mendoza served as a delegate at the First Annual Indigenous Business & Economic Development Conference in Cairns, Australia, and at the American Indian Film & Finance Forum in San Francisco, California where he promoted discussion of integrating Native American oral stories and teachings into new media projects.

Aleqwel serves as Executive Director of the Apanish Foundation, the foundation is a California 501c3 Non Profit. The primary focus of the organization is to implement a series of Chumash cultural revitalization, earth stewardship, indigenous arts, sports and cultural exchange programs.

In 2006, Mendoza launched Red Road Studios, a Native American art gallery in the heart of Santa Barbara's trend-setting district known as the Waterfront "Funk Zone.”

In 2012, Mendoza severed as a director for the Mill Valley-based service, Sacred Agent, a cutting-edge, cultural communications technology delivering quality, innovative media to global Internet users.

Currently Aleqwel has open up a new media development studio in downtown Santa Barbara under his own brand Aleqwel “ The Makers Studios” Aleqwel MStudios offers a wide range of media development services with a high level of expertise in brand design and new business development.

Aleqwel MStudios has partnered with Go Native Films to offer a wide range of original story content. GoNative Films projects range from low-cost, yet high-quality ethnographic and cultural preservation projects to higher budget documentary and narrative feature films for distribution in consumer mass markets.

Greg Monterrosa
Founder-Community Manager at Hub101

My passions lie in two distinct areas: tacos and startups. 

I am the Community Manager and one of the founders of Hub101, a startup incubator and coworking space located in Westlake Village, California with a mission of encouraging businesses to “create, launch, grow.” 

As a Startup Weekend global mentor and organizer, I was able to interact with and learn from the innovative minds behind startups worldwide. 

In 2011, the Pacific Coast Business Times selected me as one of the top 40 up-and-coming business leaders in the tri-county area.

In 2015, I mentored over 100 different startups in France and London. 

In 2016, I received a 40 Under 40 award from the Greater Conejo Valley Chamber of Commerce as well as Congressional recognition of my efforts in supporting our local startup community. 

In 2017, I joined the City of Thousand Oaks Business Roundtable. I am also a speaker and Cofounder of one of the nation's leading business formations company,

Mike Pugh
Management Consultant, Candor Coach

Mike Pugh leads the MARKETECT team. He has a passion for working with CEOs, leadership teams, Boards, and investors to drive growth through change, including facilitation, reoganization, and M&A. As VP of Marketing and revenue owner of the flagship product line at j2 Global (JCOM)—a cloud services and digital media company—Mike was a key player in the company’s growth to over $600M in revenue, $250M in profit, and a $3B market cap. He led a team of 50 marketers driving organic growth and worked on dozens of M&A diligence processes and integrations. Mike now works with company management, consulting organizations, Private Equity firms, M&A teams, Boards, and investors.

Kevin Claiborne
Founder at 413 Ways, LLC

Passionate about education, art, photography, entrepreneurship, and activism.

Jose Huitron
Entrepreneur. Educator. Startup Advisor. Community Builder.

Jose is the founder of Santa Maria Valley Tech (, a community platform highlighting all things tech and entrepreneurship in northern Santa Barbara County. A passionate and visionary leader with immersive experience bringing ideas to life. He is the founder of Hub 81, an award-winning digital marketing agency. Jose also co-founded Crowdismo, a pioneering crowdfunding platform fueling innovation, creativity, and entrepreneurship within the Latino community earning recognition as a Top 10 Finalist - PUSHTech2020 Summit Pitch Competition (2015) and featured in leading online media such as Mashable, Forbes Online, Hispanicize, and New Latina. 

Jose has been active as an advisor and teacher in the entrepreneurial community, mentoring at a variety of leading launchpad events focused on new venture formation, prototyping and accelerating new business. A champion of innovation and entrepreneurship helping clients drive ideas toward real impact. Jose previously served as the President of the Latino Startup Alliance, a Silicon Valley based organization helping to accelerate Latino led tech ventures. 

Mike Panesis
Executive Director, Center for Entrepreneurship at California Lutheran University

Entrepreneur, educator, angel investor and business executive with roots in information technology. Experience in a broad range of disciplines (software engineering, operations, product management, corporate and business development) and industries (software, automotive, financial services, information services, semiconductor, consumer goods manufacturing). Particular strengths include being a "first" COO, CIO or CTO, and realizing value from information technology investments.

Specialties: Startups, Early Stage Investing, Entrepreneurship in Higher Education, Business & IT Executive, Emerging Technologies, Corporate Development, Strategy, Business Development, Project Management, Turnarounds

Amy Love
User Experience Design Manager at AppFolio Inc.

Amy is a User Experience Designer, managing a team of rockstar designers at AppFolio. She has a passion for making user experience's easy, efficient and delightful. One of her many goals is to work toward new and innovative ways to help people work efficiently in and out of the office. Amy brings over 20 years of experience in front end web development, visual design, and user experience design to her work at AppFolio, and is a native of Santa Barbara.

Brian Bargiel
Chief Simplifier at This Side UP Global

Chief Simplifier at This Side UP Global

Isabelle Sato
Former Lead Organizer, UCSB Startup Weekend

Isabelle Sato is a two time organizer of Startup Weekend, the curator for Startup Digest, Santa Barbara, and is currently a Physics major at UCSB. She would like to help develop fusion energy as a commercially viable alternative energy source in order to mitigate the long term effects of climate change.

Sky Gilbar
Creative Director, Experience Designer, Social Innovation Strategist

Sky Gilbar is a freelance creative director, experience designer, and social innovation strategist based in Santa Barbara, California. Sky works with brands and organizations that empower others to do good through the creative use of technology, experience, design, and storytelling.

Helena McGahagan
Mobile Software Engineer at iTMP Technology, Inc (Digifit)

Coming Soon!Helena is a former mathematician, turned software engineer. For the past 6 years, she has worked for several Santa Barbara start-ups on both iOS and Android apps. She is currently at Evidation Health, a company focused on using data and technology to improve health care outcomes. She's passionate about both software architecture and designing and building beautiful, user-friendly mobile apps.

Dillon Kearns
Agile and Elm Consultant

Dillon helps teams iterate faster on their Web frontends by using Elm. As a consultant, Dillon introduced Elm at a Fortune 10 company and trained several teams to adopt it as their primary front-end framework. He leverages his background in organizational change to help teams build learning cultures and continuously improve. His philosophy is that "if it's broken, your compiler should be the first to tell you." In his free time, he loves backpacking and playing the piano.

Andres Riofrio
UX Engineering Consultant

Andres helped JPL/NASA save hundreds of thousands of dollars with cloud computing and built time-saving developer tools at Green Hills Software. Now, he helps businesses and entrepreneurs across the country in industries like insurance, smart homes and logistics build and improve web and mobile experiences.

In addition to his work helping his clients delight their users, he is passionate about dancing and syllogisms.

Jesse Adametz
Manager, Cloud Operations at Invoca

I focus on creating repeatable processes and systems that people enjoy using. Over the last 8 yearsI've honed my skills in Data Engineering, Infrastructure Provisioning, Database Development &Analysis, Automation, and Operations.

Ryan Olson
COO & Co-Founder at Stel Design

Ryan is the Lead Engineer at STEL Design working on projects that highlight his technical know-how for all mechanical related items. Main tasks include ideation for mechanics development, identifying materials, manufacturing considerations, and assisting with prototyping needs.

Justin Lin
Product Manager at Stel Design

Justin is a Product Manager at Stel Design.  In the role he provides guidance on product-market fit and operational activities required to bring a product to market. Main tasks include setting product vision and strategy, facilitating market validation of business model, managing release time-lines against development constraints, and providing input for marketing and sales strategies.

Event Sponsors, and Partners

The Startup Weekend Santa Barbara #6 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 Santa Barbara is 100% led by volunteer community leaders.
Learn how to get involved here

  • Mark
  • Darin
  • Diana
  • Kyle
  • Jeff


Kyle Ashby
Founder :: The Sandbox Santa Barbara | Founder, StartupSB || Startup Advisor

Kyle is the founder of THE SANDBOX Santa Barbara, a creative coworking, collaboration and event space and StartupSB, Santa Barbara's largest entrepreneurial network.

Ashby is also the founder of Kaldera an advisory firms that focuses on strategy, marketing and community building for startups, technology companies and organizations and Travel in Company a boutique tour and travel experience company.

Ashby was on the founding team of BrandLive and has worked in executive, marketing and project management roles with a number of multinational companies including Yardi Systems, Citrix Online and Forms+Surfaces. 

Kyle is an active advisor to startup companies and has taught classes in marketing, innovation, and entrepreneurship at the University of California Santa Barbara, and Antioch University Santa Barbara.  

Kyle organized the first four Startup Weekends in Santa Barbara and has facilitated Startup Weekends globally as part of TechStars. Kyle was a Startup America Champion and is a founding member of a national Startup Community Building Organization called the Startup Champions Network.   

MBA from Babson College. Undergraduate degrees in Film Studies and Geography from UC Santa Barbara, and is a Certified Project Manager and Certified Scrum Master. 

In his free time he is continues to learn, tinker, travel, surf, paddle, explore the outdoors, play the drums and bass, and spend time with his wife and daughter.

Jose Huitron
Idea Champion. Startup Community Builder. Design Thinker. Educator.

Jose is the founder of Santa Maria Valley Tech (, a community platform highlighting all things tech and entrepreneurship in northern Santa Barbara County. A passionate and visionary leader with immersive experience bringing ideas to life. He is the founder of Hub 81, an award-winning digital marketing agency. Jose also co-founded Crowdismo, a pioneering crowdfunding platform fueling innovation, creativity, and entrepreneurship within the Latino community earning recognition as a Top 10 Finalist - PUSHTech2020 Summit Pitch Competition (2015) and featured in leading online media such as Mashable, Forbes Online, Hispanicize, and New Latina.

Jose has been active as an advisor and teacher in the entrepreneurial community, mentoring at a variety of leading launchpad events focused on new venture formation, prototyping and accelerating new business. A champion of innovation and entrepreneurship helping clients drive ideas toward real impact. Jose previously served as the President of the Latino Startup Alliance, a Silicon Valley based organization helping to accelerate Latino led tech ventures. 

For all things startups and entrepreneurship locally, please subscribe to Santa Maria's Startup Digest newsletter:

For my latest musings, please join me on Medium.

For coffee, consulting, speaking and advising opportunities please message me. 
Twitter @josehuitron

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