Startup Weekend Orlando EDU

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Past event…

Event Ended

Lawton Chiles Preparatory School

Ever wondered what it takes to be an entrepreneur?

The professional and personal challenges, the high and lows, the failures and the success? Startup Weekend is a global grassroots movement of active and empowered entrepreneurs who are learning the basics of founding startups and launching successful ventures. It is the largest community of passionate entrepreneurs with over 400 past events in 100 countries around the world in 2011.

The non-profit organization is headquartered in Seattle, Washington but Startup Weekend organizers and facilitators can be found in over 200 cities around the world. From Mongolia to South Africa to London to Brazil, people around the globe are coming together for weekend long workshops to pitch ideas, form teams, and start companies.

All Startup Weekend events follow the same basic model: anyone is welcome to pitch their startup idea and receive feedback from their peers. Teams organically form around the top ideas (as determined by popular vote) and then it’s a 54 hour frenzy of business model creation, coding, designing, and market validation.

The weekends culminate with presentations in front of local entrepreneurial leaders with another opportunity for critical feedback. Whether entrepreneurs found companies, find a cofounder, meet someone new, or learn a skill far outside their usual 9-to-5, everyone is guaranteed to leave the event better prepared to navigate the chaotic but fun world of startups.



Jan 18
  • Registration Starts
  • Dinner & Networking
  • Welcome & Speakers
  • Pitches Start
  • Attendees vote for the top ideas
  • Teams start forming and discussing ideas
  • 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


Jan 19
  • Arrive, simple breakfast & coffee
  • Teams formed and setting up workspace for the weekend
  • Lunch
  • Call for needs & skills
  • Coaches help teams one-on-one. They are here to help!
  • Dinner
  • Mid weekend check-in, status reports, call for help
  • Finished for the day. You may stay and work as late as the venue will allow


Jan 20
  • Arrive, simple breakfast & coffee
  • Call for help (this is self motivated, so don’t be shy)
  • Lunch
  • Coaches arrive… ASK QUESTIONS
  • Gut check. Start prepping for presentations
  • Dinner
  • Judging & awards
  • Wrapup
  • Go home!
Tier 1 Sponsors

Chandra Davis

Co Founder

Searching for a nutritional edge while training for a marathon, Chandra Davis, 38, mother of two young boys, literally turned her kitchen into a lab.
Having scanned running books, surfing the web and tearing stories from women’s health magazines, one common denominator kept appearing: Chia seeds.

But what was Chandra supposed to do with her bag of super seeds?

She began pairing fruit juices and mixing in natural sweeteners. Nothing was off limits in her kitchen.

Day by day she mixed batches of her new super drink. She had more energy going into training sessions and her knees felt better after, as if her joints were being buttered. Inflammation, aches and pains were fast becoming a thing of the past.

Her kids loved the taste of her super drink and further research showed the seeds actually served as a powerful “brain food” for the growing boys. In fact, the kids and her husband would wake each morning asking, “Where’s my Chia?”

Her brother, a foot and ankle surgeon, was in awe of her die-hard dedication, never-ending enthusiasm, ingenuity, heart and hustle.
The daily combining of the concoction, though, was taking its toll. “Let’s bottle it,” said Mark, her fitness trainer and co-owner of a performance facility in Central Florida. Drink Chia was born. Nutritious “brain food,” healthy energy, low in sugar and calories, kid taste tested, trainer endorsed, today Drink Chia, because of one super mom’s vision, is bottled right here in sunny Florida.

Adam Schwartz

Technology Solutions Manager

Adam has been a pioneer in mobile technology since the modern age of the smartphone. Throughout the past three years, Adam has been involved in the development of over 50 mobile applications. Six applications have been acquired within the past year for returns of over 500% each. LLLo Inc., the mobile application company Adam founded, utilizes outsourced labor to be able to develop mobile applications at a fraction of the cost of its competitors. One of Adam's applications was developed during Startup Weekend Orlando EDU and ultimately won 1st place.

As an Adjunct Professor of International Business at Rollins College, Adam co-taught a class on developing a mobile application business from scratch. He has previously published his own book and managed the business leading to the sale of thousands of copies. In addition, Adam has worked for The Howard Stern Show, Lake Nona, Plan Source, Sirius XM, and WOR 710. Adam graduated from Crummer with an MBA in Marketing, Management and Entrepreneurship. Adam joined Frontline Performance Group full-time in April 2012 as the Technology Solutions Manager with his primary focus being the development of the Navi-Tablet solution.

Dan McGaw

As a member of the 1st place winning team of Startup Weekend Orlando, Dan McGaw added to his history in entrepreneurship. After starting his first successful business at 14, Shattered Records and Management, Dan has since run more than seven successful businesses and is now a driving force in the Orlando Startup scene. Today, Dan contributes to business and marketing strategy at Code School, helping the online education platform to reach more than 12 million developers around the world. Aside from his day job, Dan is one of the organizers of Starter Studio, an upcoming office space for fellow entrepreneurs to collaborate and work in Orlando. His years of success and failures make him a wealth of information on ideas that work, and shaped him into a leader in his community.

Tier 2 Sponsors

Gregg Pollack

Gregg Pollack is passionate about taking complex topics and teaching them in the most efficient way possible. He's helped build a few technology companies including Envy Labs, a Ruby on Rails consultancy in downtown Orlando, and Code School, an online learning platform that teaches software developers new skills. He also runs Orlando's yearly BarCamp, the Orlando Ruby Users Group, and Orlando Tech Events newsletter. Other interests (also good conversation starters) include theatre, dance, podcasting, Game of Thrones, good scotch, learning how to run a business "the hard way", and using way too many commas in a single paragraph (apparently).

Walt Griffin

Superintendent of Schools - Seminole County Public Schools

Mr. Griffin was appointed to the position of Superintendent on July 1, 2012. Prior to this, Mr. Griffin served as the Executive Director of Secondary Education – High Schools for Seminole County Public Schools for five years and was responsible for overseeing the operation of high school education. Mr. Griffin also served as a High School and Middle School Principal within Seminole County Public Schools for a total of 8 years and as a Middle School Assistant Principal for 10 years. He began his career in education as a Mathematics Teacher and holds a BA degree in Psychology, a Masters in Administration, a Specialist in Educational Leadership and is currently working towards his Doctorate in Educational Leadership.

Michael Quatrini

Partner, NewGate Capital Partners

Michael has extensive entrepreneurial and Angel Capital investment success as well as key brand management experience. He brings over 18 years of qualitative business analytics to his current position as Partner of NewGate Capital Partners and Executive Director of Village Cultivator’s Business Incubator. In his current role Michael executes institutional investment syndications for venture capital transactions and specializes in capital markets for early stage seed and angel investments. Prior to joining NewGate Michael founded and was CEO of Village Cultivators Capital Corporation, where he refined and placed into use a proprietary Business Plan Analytics application capable of measuring the success of early stage start-up offerings. Michael also founded AIM-Angel Investment Members, an angel investment group comprised of Central Florida accredited investors. Other positions Michael has held include Vice President & General Manager for DBD Brazilian Network, where he spearheaded mid-market acquisitions. Michael was a Board Member and Treasurer of the Brazilian American Chamber of Commerce, one of the largest bi-national chambers of commerce and Florida's leading organization linking U.S.-Brazil business. Michael was the Director of Sales for the then brand new concept in entertainment, IMAX Theaters for Muvico and was CEO of TOMIKEDDIES Inc, a multi-million dollar multi-national company which he founded.

John Logan

VP of Curriculum Innovation - Florida Virtual School

As the VP of Curriculum Innovation at the Florida Virtual School, John leads a team in creating online courses that engage students in imaginative ways. Prior to joining FLVS, John was an advertising creative director, who developed award-winning TV, print and online campaigns for brands such as McDonald’s, Hilton and Toyota. He also spent several years creating magic for over 30 Disney brands as an Associate Creative Director at Disney’s Yellow Shoes Creative Group.

Tier 3 Sponsors

Carol Ann Dykes

Site Manager - UCF Business Incubator   |   LinkedIn

Ms. Carol Ann Dykes manages the University of Central Florida Business Incubator @ the Central Florida Research Park. The Research Park Incubator is part of the UCF Business Incubation Program - a university-community partnership that builds high-growth business opportunities into successful business ventures in Central Florida. The Incubation Program currently serves 130+ companies in ten facilities located in Apopka, the Central Florida Research Park, Orlando, Winter Springs, Sanford, Leesburg, St. Cloud, Kissimmee, Daytona and on the UCF main campus.

Terrance Brennan


Terry Brennan is a business and intellectual property transactions attorney whose practice focuses on working with entrepreneurs and investors to commercialize innovation and reward capital risk. He has been a practical and creative legal advisor to many technology, digital media, simulation, medical device, healthcare and manufacturing companies in corporate, venture capital, intellectual property, healthcare , and entertainment transactions..

Jack Henkel

UCF Venture Lab

Jack Henkel has been a part of the University of Central Florida Venture Lab since 2007 and is currently the Assistant Director. Jack received an MBA from UCF, in addition to degrees in Marketing and Finance. Through the Venture Lab, Jack has helped hundreds of businesses on activities ranging from grant funding, market research, competitive analysis, business plans, and strategies for seeking investment. Jack also helps manage two startup accelerator-type programs: Megawatt Ventures and Startup Orange County. Megawatt Ventures is a Department of Energy funded program focusing on renewable energy startups. Startup Orange County is funded through the Orange County Government for the purpose of developing top Startup Weekend teams into promising technology companies.

Cody Swain

UCF Venture Lab

Cody Swain has been with the University of Central Florida's Venture Lab since 2008. Currently he holds the position of Business Manager. Cody earned degrees in Anthropology and International Relations from UCF where he was focused on pursuing the field of Business Anthropology. The UCF Venture Lab has allowed Cody the opportunity to work with and help hundreds of different businesses spanning a vast spectrum of needs from market research and strategic analysis to designing and creating sales campaigns. In addition, he also helped to start and helps to manage a local government sponsored accelerator program called Startup Orange County. This program is tasked with helping to foster promising ideas created at Startup Weekends and offer those startups the resources needed to take their concepts from concept to reality. Cody is also in the process of creating a startup by the name of Pack Pet which focuses on providing a monthly subscription service for pet toys and pet product samples.

Pam Hoelzle

Startup Consultant, Business Coach, Entrepreneur   |   LinkedIn

Pam Hoelzle is not your everyday startup consultant, business coach, trainer or entrepreneur. She's built and sold an 18$M dollar service company, failed at a social startup and coached hundreds of entrepreneurs and social change agents over the last 20 years. A lifetime entrepreneur Pam has taught entrepreneurship and digital marketing at the MBA and undergraduate level. Pam has a MA in education and is passionate about empowering and resourcing entrepreneurs to succeed.

Josh Murdock

Instructional Designer

Josh Murdock, also known as Professor Josh, currently works at Valencia College as an instructional designer helping build online courses, train faculty on technology, and solve the Blackboard problems of the world. He is an Associate Faculty teaching both Educational Technology in the EPI program and Student Success. He has taught online, hybrid, or face-to-face for the past eight years.

Robert Goetz

Advisory Board Council / Entrepreneur Education

Robert Goetz has been founder of a successful marketing company, limousine business, and not so successful dotcom company. He has played key roles in a multitude of startups and early stage ventures. Clients of his marketing firm included Planet Hollywood, Disney, Electronic Testing Service, Harcourt, Tupperware, and Veritas. He is well versed in entrepreneurship and business incubation, and has been a regular presenter at national conferences. As an adjunct professor in economics, Seminole State College hired Robert full time in May 2004 to serve as manager of its Small Business Development Center. He currently serves as program manager for the College’s Seminole Advisory Board Council and Entrepreneur Education.

Schooled in economics and business at State University of New York at Albany (BA) and University of South Florida (MBA), Mr. Goetz effectively weaves the theoretical and classic textbook approach with the hands-on and practical tools necessary for success. He is certified in technology consulting, disaster planning and recovery, and is a Kauffman FastTrac® facilitator. He is a frequent contributing writer and columnist to several local and national business publications. He currently writes the column “Entrepreneurship and the Creative Economy” for Community College Entrepreneur Quarterly.

George Gramatikas

Co-owner and Founder of Turbine Technology Services

George Gramatikas is an engineer, lifelong entrepreneur and co-owner and founder of Turbine Technology Services, a company that applies leading edge technologies to modernize power equipment worldwide.
As a relentless young enterprising student, George always engaged in commerce – from used ski equipment arbitrage and the manufacture and sale of Bose-like speakers, to implementing the first on-campus calculator sales venture in Boston.
Upon completion of his undergraduate degree, George worked throughout the world, building power plants for General Electric, until he decided to launch Turbine Technology Services.
He is a graduate of UCF’s Executive MBA program, serves as an executive advisor to Paul Jarley, the dean of UCF’s College of Business, and is an advisor to the Florida Angel Nexus, a newly established early-stage investment group.
George is an enthusiastic supporter of economic growth at a grass root level, and he is an active mentor and judge in entrepreneurial events across Florida.

Joshua Johnson

Co-Founder, Learn Everywhere

An entrepreneur for most of his life, Joshua has a number of start-ups under his belt. Currently, he is a co-founder of Learn Everywhere, an education technology company with a focus on mobile solutions to improve memory retention. Learn Everywhere has solutions for K-12, higher education, and corporate training.
Prior to Learn Everywhere, Joshua worked for the National Entrepreneur Center (formerly known as the Disney Entrepreneur Center) where he created and maintained their digital marketing strategy. Additionally, he was responsible for connecting entrepreneurs to the multitude of small business resources available throughout Central Florida.
Joshua has acted as a new media consultant for a number of organizations and initiatives which include, Central Florida Partnership, Orlando, Inc. (Orlando Regional Chamber of Commerce), SunRail,, UCF Business Incubation Program, City of Orlando, Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Metro Orlando, and the American Red Cross Mid-Florida Region.
Joshua is an adjunct faculty at the University of Central Florida College of Business where he created the Entrepreneurial Marketing course he has taught for the last two years.

Sterling Bates

Silver Paradigm

Sterling became a full time entrepreneur after spending 13 years in the Fortune 50 going from IT to Marketing and discovering the joy of Behavior Sciences. Sterling now combines Psychology, Technology and Business and has clients ranging from the NFL to State Farm Insurance covering areas such as Customer Experience, Marketing/Branding and Recruitment..

Michael Hageloh

Florida Next

Michael Hageloh is a practitioner of “eloquentia perfecta,” the Jesuit concept of harmonizing content and style to deliver results. He provides leadership on demand for startups and global entities on messaging and the craft of selling.

Successful early gigs included a prominent on-air radio show and working as a drummer who learned to stay one beat ahead of the music. It was a skill he’d develop and deepen over time, using it throughout his future.

Michael is the author of an upcoming book about what Steve Jobs, Apple Computer, and Apple, Inc., taught him during more than two decades of selling for the world’s most successful company.

Michael is a first generation American, native Floridian, and global citizen. A Jesuit education gave him a durable foundation, and he went on to earn an MBA, but he still learns daily from the school of hard knocks. His rare combination of salesmanship, performance art, and relationship building have allowed him to create a brand of success all his own.

Ed Alexander


As the founder of Entrepreneurship Law Firm, located in Orlando, Florida, Ed Alexander helps entrepreneurs Grow, Protect and Profit from their businesses. He's represented entrepreneurs and their business ventures since he became a lawyer in 1993. Ed is admitted to practice law in both Florida and New York.

Ed works closely with University of Central Florida Technology Incubator (UCFTI) clients and Seminole County Technology Incubator clients, and is regularly requested to present the “Legal and Ethical Foundations” portion of the UCF Incubator Excellence in Entrepreneurship Certificate Course. Ed is a member of the Greater Orlando Chamber of Commerce (now Orlando, Inc.) Entrepreneurial Advisory Counsel and the United States SBA Small Business Resource Network.

Prior to attending law school, Ed held technical and business positions with technology companies, including with a pacemaker manufacturer, custom integrated circuit manufacturer and laser bar code manufacturer. He has been part of teams that designed software and hardware for the first generation of defibrillator pacemakers, as well as custom analog and digital integrated circuits used in, among other applications, automobiles and hearing aids.

Tier 4 Sponsors
Christine Ortiz
Ron Ben-Zeev
Orrett Davis
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