Techstars Global Startup Weekend 2017

    Friday, November 10 - 12, 2017

  1. Overview
  2. Schedule
  3. Judges
  4. Coaches and Mentors
  5. Sponsors
  6. Organizing Team
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Techstars Global Startup Weekend 2017

Friday, November 10 - 12, 2017

Friday, November 10 - 12, 2017
Event starts at 6:00 pm

Gallaudet University
800 Florida Ave NE
Washington, DC 20002

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Taking ideas from concept to creation in a matter of days!

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, then that means you did not have a process for taking that idea and building it out into a prototype.

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 of going from concept to creation,
  • meet experienced, talented, and passionate entrepreneurs in DC,
  • join or build an all-star team,
  • or take your own idea from concept to creation
Startup Weekend is your destination for the weekend of November 10-12th!  

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 universities and even high schools,
  • professionals looking to switch careers,
  • passionate visionaries
What's the twist?  

More than 15,000 entrepreneurs will come together for 200 events held during Global Entrepreneurship Week to celebrate entrepreneurship across the globe. The winners of Global Startup Weekend will be featured globally to help them gain more exposure and build momentum for their startup.

All attendees will also be provided with high-quality resources and content exclusive to this event.

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 professionals from throughout DC-Maryland-Virginia
  • All-star judge's panel lead by startup and entrepreneurial 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 100 new awesome Facebook friends!
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 alright!  Come and spend the weekend, listen to the ideas being pitched, and see if something piques your interest!  The weekend is all about learning about the startup ideation process and learning from each other.  If you have more questions, check out the Startup Weekend First Timers FAQ!

Join us for a very special weekend! 

Questions? Press inquiries?  Please email us at

See what it's all about

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Friday November 10th

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

7:10 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 November 11th

9:00 am
Arrive, simple breakfast & coffee

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

10:00 am
Workshop: Lean Business Canvas
Brief overview of how to find product market fit for your startup idea.

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!

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 November 12th

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

6:30 pm

7:30 pm
Judging & Awards

8:30 pm

9:00 pm
Go Home!

Event Judges

Aurelia Flores
CEO, Perfect Digital Connect

Aurelia Flores, Managing Member of Athena Digital Media Group, has been in the digital marketing field for nearly 10 years. She has a passion for helping people connect with their ideal clients online and specializes in Facebook Ad Campaigns. Aurelia is especially committed to helping her clients change the world with their work. In 2016, Aurelia joined the Pipeline Angels network of women investors. She is deeply committed to their goals of changing the face of angel investing and creating capital for women social entrepreneurs. Her angel investments all focus on large social change projects led by women.

Jack Bienko
Director for Entrepreneurship Education at the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA)

John “Jack” Bienko is the (A) Director for Entrepreneurship Education at the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) headquarters in Washington, DC. SBA facilitates billions of dollars in financing and contracts each year while overseeing a broad entrepreneurial support system and assisting communities recover from disasters. Mr. Bienko’s team builds customized education solutions that include SCORE’s network of 11,000 business mentors, the flagship SBA Emerging Leaders executive training series in 50 cities, an award-winning digital learning portal logging 300,000 registrations annually, the national Encore Entrepreneurship campaign, and cutting-edge partnerships with global brands and civic innovators.

Adeleke Omitowoju
Venture Advisor, Project 500

Adeleke Omitowoju is an early stage venture consultant and advisor based in DC.  He started his career in private equity where he worked as an analyst in New Delhi India for global fund Avenue Capital Group.  He then joined IBM as a Client Executive where he led complex deals in healthcare and energy and utilities.  After leaving IBM, he co-founded Ghost Note, one of DC’s leading integrated marketing agencies.  

He also co-founded Technoir, an annual pitch competition for tech entrepreneurs of color.  He advises DC policymakers and philanthropic organizations on strategies to develop and sustain inclusive communities for innovators and entrepreneurs.  He attended Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University (FAMU) where he earned his undergraduate degree and MBA with a concentration in finance.  His core focus now is the development of scalable models that deliver support services to idea-stage and early-stage entrepreneurs of color that de-risk the startup, increase the survival rate and ensure capital readiness.

Jenn Gustetic
Harvard DigitalHKS Fellow

Coaches and Mentors

Phil Jung
Associate at Maryland Venture Fund

Phil works as an Investment Associate at the Maryland Venture Fund, an early-stage, evergreen venture capital firm dedicated to growing the next generation of exceptional businesses in Maryland. With $110M in assets under management, the Maryland Venture Fund partners with entrepreneurs to build high-growth technology companies that last. Prior to joining the Maryland Venture Fund, Phil worked for Foundation Capital, a venture capital fund based in Menlo Park, California, and TDF Ventures, an early-stage fund based in Chevy Chase, Maryland.  Phil began his career at KPMG’s Risk Consulting practice in the Silicon Valley where he specialized in software asset management and contract compliance services. He also co-founded the Jeremy Lin Foundation, a Palo Alto based non-profit whose mission is to serve at-risk youth through education and leadership development in underserved communities. Phil received an MBA from Georgetown University and a BA from UC Berkeley.

Julia Westfall
CEO, Hera Hub DC

Julia is the founder and CEO of Hera Hub DC, a professional work and meeting space for women business owners in the Washington DC Metro area.

Julia’s passion for supporting women business owners comes from her 20+ years working with small businesses, helping them manage their financial and HR needs. She is focused on building a vibrant community and network of women in business that fosters collaboration and supports the launch and growth of their businesses. 

Through her work as the Hera Hub DC founder, she supports organizations focused on entrepreneurship and women in business.

Sibyl Edwards
Co-Founder Black Female Founders & Co-Founder/Chief Creative Inclusion Officer Wetogethr

Sibyl Edwards is a brand manager, strategist, designer and an advocate for tech inclusion and women in technology. For over a decade, Ms. Edwards has created successful digital campaigns for Fortune 500 companies, non-profit associations, NGOs and startups such as: The World Bank, DC Government, Social@Ogilvy, Rosetta Stone, Gannett/GO Digital, Cision and Marriott. Ms. Edwards is currently Chief Creative Officer (CCO) and partner of Wetogethr, a strategy agency whose focus is innovation, branding, tech inclusion and diversity. She also works on the digital team for The United Food & Commercial Workers International Union (UFCW). Sibyl has served as Executive Director for DC Innovates (DCI), a non-profit organization with the mission of fostering and supporting a diverse tech innovation economy in the District of Columbia. DCI managed the Digital DC Technology Fund (DDCTF), a $1 million catalytic fund for early-stage technology ventures in the District. As President of DC Web Women (DCWW), one of the largest and longest-running tech nonprofits for women in D.C., Sibyl volunteers her time helping to support and advocate for women and girls in internet and tech-related industries. As co-founder of Black Female Founders (#BFF), an organization whose mission is to provide awareness, support, resources and a platform for Black women entrepreneurs, she developed #BFF Labs, an 8-week period pre-accelerator program for aspiring early-stage entrepreneurs. Ms. Edwards has spoken on a number of panels in and around DC and has served as judge for local and national startup competitions. She has also keynoted at Drupal GovCon and was recently listed on Essence magazine’s #Woke100 list. Ms. Edwards is an alumni of the Corcoran College of Art + Design.

Bianca Buliga
Digital Marketing Manager for SEED SPOT

Bianca Buliga is the Digital Marketing Manager for SEED SPOT, a top 20 global accelerator that helps early-stage entrepreneurs launch their social ventures. Her role includes leveraging social media platforms, email marketing, and thought leadership articles to accelerate growth and impact for entrepreneurs nationwide. Bianca is a quadrilingual first-generation American of Romanian ethnicity who earned her M.A. in Global Affairs and Management from the Thunderbird School of Global Management in Phoenix, AZ. While at Thunderbird, she led a consulting project for the Peruvian government to analyze the innovation capacities of family-owned manufacturing SMEs in metropolitan Lima. Bianca is passionate about using business as a force for good in spurring social innovation.

Jason Eaves
Business Innovation Hub, Senior Lead - SOBA Program at Adam Smith International

Global business development leader and entrepreneur with over a decade of experience in cultivating high-performing teams to design user-centric innovations and scale new ventures. Passionate about strengthening entrepreneurial ecosystems to accelerate enterprise impact on local and national development.

As a consultant, I focus on analyzing new business opportunities, developing sales and marketing strategies, and optimizing revenue processes for both the non-profit and for-profit sectors. 

Corinne Allen
AAAS Science & Technology Policy Fellow, U.S. Department of Energy

Corinne is an American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Science and Technology Policy fellow at the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), where she works on multiple initiatives within the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy's Technology-to-Market program. Prior to her work at DOE, Corinne was the first employee at a small chemistry startup. While there, she developed new light activated 3D printing resins that enabled direct printing of manufactured strength parts before ultimately becoming the company’s director of operations. Corinne earned her PhD in chemistry from the University of California, San Diego, where she studied the capabilities of tunable 'molecular sponges.'

Leslie Tita

Leslie Tita, is the Co-founder of I/O Spaces and I/O Learn, an innovation space for Early Stage Startups, Minority Founders and Professionals in downtown Silver Spring. I/O Spaces houses over 130 startups, over 50% are women led.

Leslie's work appeared on Season 2 premiere of Kamau Bell's CNN Show United Shades of America, and has also been featured on Buzzfeed, Technically DC, City Lab, Blavity and the Huffington Post. 

He has received recognition by Montgomery County executive and Maryland Governor, Larry Hogan for his work with the African Diaspora community.

He was awarded one of 2017 50 people on fire in DC by AmericanInno and appeared in the 2017 September print edition of Forbes Afrique

Evan Smith

Evan Smith has more than 25 years of experience in business, law, and entrepreneurship. He was a partner at Greenberg Traurig, a successful startup CEO, and is currently managing partner at Cogent Law Group. Specialties: 1) Intellectual Property Strategy; 2) Negotiating & Closing Complex Business and Licensing Transactions; 3) Product Development & Design; 4) Business Planning, Structures, & Funding

Oscar Jung

Oscar A. Jung is Co-Founder and CEO at who offers Instant search, select and payment for charter buses in the US. Prior to launching Mr. Jung was Entrepreneur in Residence at Lightbank Ventures and launched Boomerang which was bought by Groupon. Mr. Jung started his tech career at the same place, Groupon, where he was VP for South East Asia responsible for Groupon’s expansion across 8 countries. Prior to this Mr. Jung was a management consultant at A.T. Kearney.

Geoff Orazem

Event Sponsors, and Partners

The Techstars Global Startup Weekend 2017 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.

Signature Sponsors



Organizing Team

Techstars Startup Weekend Washington, D.C. is 100% led by volunteer community leaders.
Learn how to get involved here

  • Steven
  • Brittany
  • Monica


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Enterprise Partnership Manager @ DailyPay

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