Startup Speed-dating Mentors
Principal at BBG Ventures
Nisha Dua is Principal at BBG Ventures, a New York-based seed stage venture capital fund founded by Susan Lyne and backed by AOL, investing in women-led technology companies. We back founders who are creating market-defining consumer applications and services that make our lives simpler, better, more delightful.
BBG Ventures grew out of AOL’s #BUILTBYGIRLS initiative, which aims to inspire and support women and girls to claim their place in the tech-enabled economy by imagining and building the great products of the future or by tapping technology to power their work/play/passions.
Nisha is also the General Manager of Cambio, a site for girls, #builtbygirls. The new Cambio was built out of a partnership with Girls Who Code. Five GWC alumni helped rebuild the site as a platform that not only entertains but empowers young women to build anything they want to build and be anything they want to be.
Follow me on Twitter at @Nish67
Co-founder and Managing Director of Upstart
Mara Lewis is a serial entrepreneur and champion for diversity in tech. After launching her first startup in college, she went on to found 4 more tech startups, and is currently the Managing Director of Start Co. — an accelerator and venture fund for early stage startups. To date, she has helped accelerate over 30 high-tech, high-growth companies. Mara sits on the Board of the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) and advises Fortune 500 companies on innovation strategy and corporate venture. Mara has been quoted in the media as a thought leader for women in technology, and in 2012, helped launch Upstart, one of the nation’s first accelerators for women-led tech startups. She resides in San Francisco, CA with a secondary residence in Memphis, TN to support startups outside of traditional tech hubs.
Andrew Weinreich is a serial entrepreneur, social networking pioneer, and active presence in NYC’s Silicon Alley for 2 decades. To date, he’s founded 7 startups and has been awarded 2 software patents.
Within the past year, he has sold 2 businesses, including Xtify to IBM in October 2013, while advising 5 tech startups. He is currently the co-founder and Chairman of Indicative, a data analytics startup.
Shelly Kapoor Collins
Shelly is a frequent Tech entrepreneur and Advisor who works at the intersection of Technology, Politics and Innovation. In 2015, the Economic Times of India named Shelly one of the twenty most influential global Indian women. Shelly is Founder and CEO of Tech Hill Advisors, based in Silicon Valley. Tech Hill is based on Shelly’s keen understanding of the challenges faced by innovative companies, where Technologies outpace state and federal legislation and regulations. Shelly has extensive experience in aligning public sector officials with relevant private sector stakeholders around a specific issue to drive actionable results. Previously, Shelly founded Enscient Solutions.
Shelly developed Root Square, an innovative, incentive-driven online fundraising tool designed to enable political candidates and non-profits to raise funds across social media sites. Currently, Shelly is developing Shatter Capital, a funding platform for women led startups. Shatter accelerates women’s role in tech and offers guidance and support from idea to delivery. Shelly also started the Veterans Training Council to train and connect honorably discharged veterans with skills to prepare them for 21st century careers in top-notch companies.
Shelly is one of eight female CEOs appointed to the National Women’s Business Council in the Obama Administration and was a member of the President’s delegation to India in January 2015. Shelly served as Vice Chair of the Women in Public Service started by Secretary Hillary Clinton while at the State Department and is actively helping to develop women leaders in government and civic organizations on a global level. Shelly has served in a number of appointed and advisory positions for President Obama, including as a National Co-chair for Technology during the 2012 Presidential Campaign, was a Technology Advisor to the Office of the Attorney General, Kamala D. Harris and a Technology Advisor to the India Senate Caucus. Shelly is a staunch advocate of STEM Education to young girls in underrepresented communities.
Shelly holds an M.S. in MIS and B.S. in MIS, from the University of Maryland College Park.
Follow me on Twitter at @ShalKCollins
Founder/CEO of Lucas Point Ventures
Adam is Founder/CEO of Lucas Point Ventures and an active investor in and advisor to early stage companies. Previously he was a top ranked sell side investment analyst in the UK, Asia and the US.
Adam’s current investments include The Muse, Rapt Media, Glassbreakers, VenueBook, Hire an Esquire, Pinks and Greens, Validately and Snaps. In the first half of 2014 he served as Chief Financial Officer of NYC based cybersecurity company NopSec, another of his investees. In addition in 2014 he was named one of the 25 Angel Investors you need to know in New York by AlleyWatch as well as one of 100 Tech Influencers You Need to Know. In 2015 he was featured in Tech.co as “One of 8 VCs Making Waves“.
He serves on the Board of Pinks and Greens and an Advisor to Hire an Esquire, Tactile Finance and San Francisco based SwoopTalent . He is on the Executive Advisory Board of techweek. Adam is and member of and/or advisor to several angel groups including 37 Angels and Astia Angel where he is a founding Angel and chairs the Astia East Coast Advisory Board. He is an Mentor for Boulder based accelerator program MergeLane and an Advisor to San Francisco based Women’s Startup Lab as well as the Vinetta Project.
Adam is an Adjunct Professor at Columbia University, School of International and Public Affairs where he is a Capstone workshop advisor and member of the Management Faculty.
He holds a BA and MA in Natural Sciences from Cambridge University and an MBA from Cass Business School, London.