Past Event Mentors

Darrin Caddes

Vice President of Corporate Design for Plantronics Inc

Before Plantronics Caddes was Sr. Designer for Fiat Automotive and BMW and Design Director for Indian Motorcycle Inc. He's received numerous international design & innovation awards, taught classes for Art Center College of Design and guest lectured for Stanford University, Facebook, UC Santa Cruz, University of Michigan, Art Center College of Design, Istituto Europeo and Scuola d’Arte Applicata.

    Doug Erickson

    Vice president of U.S. west coast sales for Nanigans

    In addition to running west coast sales for Nanigans, Doug invests in Santa Cruz tech companies including Buoy Labs and Inboard Technology, cofounder and president of UCSC’s hackathon — this year renamed CruzHack — and founder of the popular Santa Cruz New Tech Meetup

    Wilson “Win” Farrar

    Sales Executive

    Enterprise Sales and Business Development Expert. Over 15 Years of Success. Co-Founded, Built, and Sold Two Technology Companies, Instrumental in Acquisition Negotiations. Excellent Record of Achieving and Surpassing Revenue Goals and Creating Additional Revenue Streams. Proven ability to initiate and optimize long-term strategic C-Level relationships.

    Tatyana Kanzaveli

    Founder and CEO of Open Health Network

    Seasoned entrepreneur, thinker, leader, mentor, advisor and investor. Held senior executive roles at large enterprises and startups. Have experiences in B2B and B2C areas.

    Margaret Rosas

    Director of Customer Love

    Margaret connects people to each other and to ideas, exposing previously unforeseen possibilities. Her toolkit includes user interface, user experience, brand identity, social media, search engine optimization, and web protocols.

    Nadine Schaeffer

    UX Director, Designer & Organic Farmer

    Over 20 years experience in the software world, focusing on building and leading teams to create usable and enjoyable user experiences.

    Lloyd Tabb

    Founder, Chairman & CTO - Looker

    Lloyd Tabb spent the last 25 years revolutionizing how the world uses the internet and, by extension, data.

    Frank Bien

    CEO - Looker

    Frank brings more than 20 years of experience in business intelligence, big data, analytics, and data storage to expand Looker’s reach and capabilities.

    Ben Cox

    Owner and CEO - Startup Ready

    An advisor and hands-on participant in early-stage startups providing product development, planning, budgeting, MVP refinement and system architecture.

    Glenn Stearns


    Entrepreneur Venture Capitalist Imagineer at Stearns & More Capital

    Danielle Lanyard

    Founder & CEO - Big Deep Digital

    Her life and work experience blends environmental study, community action, business development, and being at the right place at the right time. Her activism work began as a child in her own backyard and now spans two decades and four continents, including a B.A. in Community Psychology and a minor in Environmental Studies.

    Keith Holtaway

    Business Consultant

    A Bay Area business consultant who for the last 16 years have taken seeds of ideas and transformed them into award-winning, successful and recognized small businesses.

    Tyler Young

    UX/UI Designer

    Tyler Young is a commercial artist and entrepreneur with experience producing professional journalism, action photography, illustration, typography, information and ecommerce web sites, product and brand name creation and identity design, and more.

    Bill Richter

    Corporate Lawyer

    A seasoned solo corporate lawyer with a passion for cross-border, as well as cross-town transactions. Enjoys working closely with corporations -- large or small, domestic or foreign, boot-strapped or funded -- to help execute business objectives, launch new technologies and improve lives and those of the next generation.

    Alex Cowan


    Alex Cowan is the founder & CTO of Leonid Systems, a leader in enterprise 2.0 solutions for cloud communications.

    Bob Cagle

    CEO - productOps

    Bob brings years of software industry management expertise to productOps. Prior to cofounding productOps, he spent two years at Krugle, where he built and managed the team that created a vertical code gathering and information management tool designed for software developers.

    Sol Lipman


    Sol Lipman is an experienced entrepreneur and mobile developer who recently joined AOL as a part of the company’s acquisition of Rally Up, maker of the popular Rally Up and FacePlant mobile applications.

    John Marshall

    Founder, CEO - Algorithmic Ads

    A software entrepreneur with much experience building software/tech/internet companies, designing products, acquiring customers and engineering an exit

    Jose Caballer


    Jose is the co-founder of The Skool, an education company that teaches solopreneurs, design agencies and statups how to collaborate, execute and thrive in the digital economy.

    Ted Holladay


    Creative visionary with over twenty years of experience producing successful marketing solutions for some of the world’s most recognized brands. Expert in concept and strategy development, with a proven ability to motivate and inspire creative teams to deliver outstanding creative work.

      Craig Vachon


      Craig Vachon wrote his first business plan at 12 years old, sold his first company at 25 years old, and has been a relentless entrepreneur/angel investor ever-since.

      Steven Beitzel

      Software Engineer

      Stephen Beitzel has been developing software for over 20 years. He's worked at all stages of the product lifecycle, from startup through iterative improvement and maintenance to end-of-life support. He has experience in large and small environments and has worked at startups and established companies. He has over ten years' experience developing high-performance Java server applications for LinkedIn and Netflix. He is currently working in Perl for San Jose State University Research Foundation, in partnership with NASA.

        Patrick Reilly

        Intellectual Property Lawyer

        Patrick Reilly, J.D. is the Founder or the Intellectual Property Society, Associate Publisher of the Personal Data Journal and a practicing intellectual property attorney. Patrick has a special commitment to encourage civic engagement with the evolution of Patent Law, personal data rights and Internet identity.

        Bart Teeuwisse

        Full Stack Developer

        A full-stack developer with experience developing for the Internet on 3 continents. From tiny startups to Yahoo! and anywhere in between. Currently at Twitter as part of the Growth team. Hands on Ruby, PHP, JavaScript coder who is equally at home in Emacs on a remote server as a well as in a modern IDE on a shiny MacBook Pro.

        Peter Jennings

        Entrepreneur and Investor

        High technology entrepreneur and investor with 30 years experience in Silicon Valley, Canada and Europe. Founder Gavilan Corporation, designed and marketed the first notebook computer.

        Steve Hill

        Director of Strategic Services

        Over the past fifteen years, Steve has directed strategic initiatives for leading technology, consumer, and entertainment companies including AFLAC, AMD, BEA, Disney Pictures, HP, NetApp, Netflix, Sun, TiVo, TIBCO, Twentieth Century Fox, VISA, and Universal Pictures.