Startup

Entrepreneurship is an important driver of economic development. With only 10% of startups proving to be successful each year, it’s important to know what it takes to survive the odds of failing. From determining your seed funding to scaling your business, our team of experts can provide valuable insight into how to navigate the world of startups. Contact us at Gravity Speakers to book your next startup keynote speaker.

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Sofiat Abdulrazaaq
Sofiat
Abdulrazaaq
CoFounder & CEO of Goodfynd, Fintech Entrepreneur, Privacy Expert, Former Sr. Product Manager

Sofiat Abdulrazaaq is the co-founder & CEO of Goodfynd, a fintech platform enhancing accessibility for mobile food businesses. A serial entrepreneur and privacy expert, who brings a decade of experience translating business goals into developed products. She has held prior leadership positions at some of the largest Fortune 500 and billion-dollar nonprofit organizations and operates her own consulting practice. As a founder of SBA Strategies, she empowers entrepreneurs and champions underrepresented voices in business.

Sofiat Abdulrazaaq
Ayinde Alakoye
Ayinde
Alakoye
Co-Founder of nēdl, Trailblazing Serial Entrepreneur, Tech Visionary

Ayinde Alakoye is a serial entrepreneur and the co-founder and CEO of nēdl, his third live broadcast radio streaming venture. Ayinde was also the creator of the original iheartradio app served as a Speechwriter, Staffer, and Senior Message Advisor for Presidential Candidate Barack Obama, during both elections.

Ayinde Alakoye
Sheena Allen
Sheena
Allen
CEO & Founder of Capway (Youngest Female U.S. Digital Bank Owner), Entrepreneur, Author

Sheena Allen is an entrepreneur, author, speaker, and creative architect. She is the founder of Capway, a neobank for those who do not fit into the traditional banking system, which gave Sheena the title of the youngest female in America to own and operate a digital bank. Sheena has been featured in various documentaries and publications, including Inc Magazine and Forbes.

Sheena Allen
Mandy Antoniacci
Mandy
Antoniacci
Columnist, Author, Tech Entrepreneur

A sought after voice of inspiration, Mandy is a columnist, founder, and prolific influencer. Her breadth of work in mind+body connection and unwavering optimism has earned her global attention and positioning alongside elite social leaders and sports figures around the world. Mandy now travels the globe inspiring resilience through her recent and personal triumph in mental and physical wellness.

Mandy Antoniacci
Andrea Barrica
Andrea
Barrica
Co-Founder & CEO of O.school, Author

Andrea Barrica, author of Sex Tech Revolution, is CEO and Co-founder of O.school, a judgment-free multimedia platform to learn about sexuality and pleasure. Previously, Andrea co-founded accounting and tax platform, inDinero.com, where she led sales and operations. She also served as a venture partner and entrepreneur-in-residence at 500 Startups.

Andrea Barrica
Chris Barton
Chris
Barton
Founder and Creator of Shazam, Entrepreneur, Inventor, and Tech Investor

Chris Barton is the Founder and Creator of Shazam. Chris’s creation of Shazam was nothing short of pure magic as it was far ahead of its time. Chris seeks to delight people by using technology to make seemingly impossible ideas come to life. In his speeches, Chris’s story and storytelling completely captivate audiences. He inspires people to make big things happen in their organizations – to create magic in defiance of the obstacles.

Chris Barton
Emily Best
Emily
Best
Founder/CEO of Seed&Spark and Film Forward, Producer, Writer, Leveraging Entertainment for Equity and Sustainability

Emily Best is the founder and CEO of Seed&Spark. An advocate for equity inclusion in the entertainment industry (and the entire working world), Best regularly speaks at conferences and events about leveraging entertainment to build equity and sustainability for everyone, crowdfunding, and pitching, building equitable startups, and serves as an advisor and mentor to dozens of early-stage companies.

Emily Best
Candice Matthews Brackeen
Candice Matthews
Brackeen
Founder & CEO, Lightship Foundation, Entrepreneurial Visionary, Advocate for Diversity in Tech and Innovation

Candice Matthews is a General Partner at Lightship Capital, where she finds and funds high growth, minority-led companies operating in underserved ecosystems throughout the Midwest. She also directs programming at Lightship Foundation, the inclusion-focused entrepreneur enrichment program guiding minority founders with instruction in product development, brand building, leveraging artificial intelligence for business and fundraising.

Candice Matthews Brackeen
Jennifer Brandel
Jennifer
Brandel
CEO and Co-founder of Hearken, Award-Winning Journalist, Serial Entrepreneur, Innovator

Jennifer Brandel is an award-winning journalist, founder and organizer whose work spans journalism, civic engagement, democracy and entrepreneurship. She’s a dynamic, sought-after keynote speaker and workshop facilitator. Brandel began her career in journalism reporting for outlets including NPR, CBC, WBEZ, The New York Times, and Vice. She is the founder of Hearken, which helps institutions better listen and respond to their stakeholders.

Jennifer Brandel
Jessica Brown
Jessica
Brown
Design Leader, Staff Product Designer at Faire, Former Director of UX at VICE

Jessica Brown is staff product designer at Faire. She previously led design and user research teams at Vice Media and Rent the Runway. Fascinated by the co-evolution of culture and technology, she loves leading teams to find simple design solutions to complex problems. Jessica speaks on executing redesigns at scale and common philosophies and practices guiding creative people of all disciplines. She has established design and research practices that brought users’ stories to the heart of the product.

Jessica Brown
Mike Brown
Mike
Brown
Founder and CEO of Win-Win, Former Pro-Athlete

Mike Brown, a pro-athlete turned self-taught coder, transitioned from tackling to tech and went on to be the founder and CEO of Win-Win, a platform powered by gaming and giving. Win-Win enables pro athletes and influencers to monetize their fanbase and help brands engage with end consumers.

Mike Brown
Chris Burry
Chris
Burry
Co-CEO of US Market Access & A3 Global Collider

Chris is a serial entrepreneur with global experience. Since 2010, he has focused on bringing the lessons of Silicon Valley to entrepreneurs around the world.  He is the co-founder of the US Market Access Center and the A3 Global Collider.  Through USMAC, Chris has trained and mentored more than 1,000 startups from 25+ countries.

Chris Burry
Courtney Caldwell
Courtney
Caldwell
Cofounder & CEO of ShearShare, Trailblazing and Award-Winning Tech Entrepreneur and Marketer

Courtney Caldwell is the Cofounder & CEO of beauty-tech startup, ShearShare, the largest provider of on-demand salon and barbershop space rentals and the most affordable leases in the market. She is also an award-winning entrepreneur and tech founder and has spent two decades building winning teams in tech marketing.

Courtney Caldwell
Tye Caldwell
Tye
Caldwell
Visionary Founder of ShearShare, reshaping the beauty industry, Author, Educator, and Award-Winning Salon Owner with a Global Impact

Dr. Tye Caldwell is the Cofounder & Chief Strategy Officer of ShearShare. Recognized as a tech visionary and industry pioneer, Dr. Caldwell’s mission is to help beauty and barbering professionals around the world maximize their earnings potential. He has worked in beauty for 25 years as a master barber-stylist, educator, and small business coach, offering his 20+ years of industry knowledge as a proven roadmap.

Tye Caldwell
Cheryl Campos
Cheryl
Campos
Head of Venture Growth & Partnerships at Republic, Co-Founder of VCFamilia, Actress

Cheryl Campos is the Head of Venture Growth and Partnerships at Republic, an investment platform for founders to raise capital from both accredited and non-accredited investors. Cheryl is also co-founder of VCFamilia, the largest Latinx community in the venture, supporting over 300 VCs throughout their careers — from breaking into venture all the way to creating their own funds.

Cheryl Campos
Anne Cocquyt
Anne
Cocquyt
CEO and Founder of the GUILD, Serial Entrepreneur, Super Connector in Silicon Valley

Anne Cocquyt, CEO and Founder of the GUILD, is an inspirational speaker on entrepreneurship, innovation, and leadership. She speaks on how to start businesses, prototyping, building successful partnerships, and how to attract and retain winning diverse teams. She moderates and joins panels on gender bias in AI, product management and technology trends, and teaches design-thinking workshops on building innovation ecosystems.

Anne Cocquyt
Mark Coopersmith
Mark
Coopersmith
Bestselling Author and Entrepreneur

Mark Coopersmith is a bestselling author, entrepreneur, Fortune 500 executive, and educator. Mark has mentored hundreds of startup teams which have launched groundbreaking new ventures in sectors as varied as web services, consumer electronics, medical devices, internet-of-things, education, cleantech, fintech, and fashion.

Mark Coopersmith
Dawn Dickson
Dawn
Dickson
Serial Entrepreneur & Inventor

Dawn Dickson is a serial entrepreneur and inventor with over 20 years of experience in technology, marketing, and business development. Her most recent ventures are Flat Out of Heels and PopCom. Dawn is a seasoned professional speaker, business advisor, and angel investor.  She continues to be recognized as one of the nation’s top retail tech entrepreneurs.

Dawn Dickson
Ugwem Eneyo
Ugwem
Eneyo
Co-Founder & CEO of SHYFT Power Solutions, Pioneering AI and IoT in Energy Tech in Emerging Markets

Ugwem Eneyo is co-founder and CEO of SHYFT Power Solutions, specializing in the use of IoT software and big data to improve access to clean, reliable and affordable energy solutions in markets that struggle with grid resiliency. Ms. Eneyo explores how we use tech to create ‘grids of the future’ but particularly in emerging markets. She’s given talks on the nexus of energy and sustainable development to global thought leaders, including the World Bank.

Ugwem Eneyo
Melinda Briana Epler
Melinda Briana
Epler
Founder & CEO of Empovia, Author on Allyship

Melinda Briana Epler has over 25 years of experience developing business innovation and inclusion strategies for startups, Fortune 500 companies, and global NGOs. As CEO of Empovia, Melinda works with the tech industry to solve diversity and inclusion together. Using her background in storytelling and large-scale culture change, she is a strategic advisor for tech companies, tech hubs, and governments around the world.

Melinda Briana Epler
Tonya M. Evans
Tonya M.
Evans
Professor & Global Leader in Tech, IP, Crypto Innovation

Professor Tonya M. Evans is a global leader, accomplished academic and administrator, and world-renowned speaker with over twenty years of experience in law, innovation, academia, and entrepreneurship. She writes, speaks and teaches primarily in the areas of intellectual property, blockchain and crypto assets, tech and innovation, information privacy, financial inclusion, and economic empowerment.

Tonya M. Evans
Mitchella Gilbert
Mitchella
Gilbert
CEO and Founder of Oya Femtech Apparel, Visionary Startup Founder, Innovator, Motivational Speaker

Mitchella Gilbert is a visionary startup founder, innovator, and the CEO and Founder of Oya Femtech Apparel, a groundbreaking brand that addresses feminine health issues. She is one of the first 200 black women to secure over $1,000,000 in venture capital, and has received prestigious accolades such as the John Wooden International Leadership Award. She also served as a 2024 diplomatic delegate to Japan on behalf of the City of Los Angeles.

Mitchella Gilbert
Andrea Guendelman
Andrea
Guendelman
Expansive Leadership Expert, CEO of Speak_

Andrea Guendelman is a writer, speaker, and entrepreneur who specializes in Expansive Leadership—helping individuals and organizations unlock potential through openness. She is a leading force in creating platforms for minority professionals and the tech industry. Through her own experiences as a Harvard-trained corporate lawyer and an entrepreneur, she co-created Bevisiblelatinx, Wallbreakers, and most recently, Speak_.

Andrea Guendelman
Arlan Hamilton
Arlan
Hamilton
Founder Backstage Capital & Runner, Author, and Trailblazing Investor

Arlan Hamilton is a remarkable entrepreneur who built a venture capital fund from the ground up, while homeless. She is the Founder and Managing Partner of Backstage Capital, a VC firm dedicated to minimizing funding disparities in tech by investing in high-potential founders who are people of color, women, and/or LGBT.

Arlan Hamilton
Chante Harris
Chante
Harris
Founder and Managing Partner of Eunoia Group, Global Climate Strategist

Chante Harris is a climate tech strategist and Founder and Managing Partner of Eunoia Group. She is also Co-Founder of Women of Color Collective in Sustainability (WOC/CS), a champion of social and finance innovation, and ACEEE Champion of Energy Efficiency. Throughout her career, she has successfully scaled nationwide campaigns, technologies, and ideas for the Obama Administration, Fortune 500 companies, and startups. Chante is at the helm of driving climate innovation and advancing the energy transition across cities.

Chante Harris
Denise Love Hewett
Denise Love
Hewett
Host of Do The Work, Producer, DJ

Denise Love Hewett is the host of the podcast, Do the Work, which focuses on redefining leadership to be more holistic. This was birthed out of her time as a founder of Scriptd, an entertainment tech company working to dismantle the inefficient and exclusionary practices of Hollywood. She comes from the world of entertainment, fashion, and hospitality, starting her career as the Director of Sales and Marketing at famed nightclub The Box.

Denise Love Hewett
Harold Hughes
Harold
Hughes
Bandwagon CEO, Tech Innovator, and Diverse Ventures Champion

Harold Hughes is the founder & CEO of Bandwagon, a South Carolina-based live experience technology company. As a web3 builder and community leader, Harold published "A Kids Book About Blockchain" to help educate people "from 6 to 60" about the revolutionary technology that Bandwagon specializes in. Harold is also an active angel investor, primarily investing in women, people of color, and Black founder-led companies.

Harold Hughes
Maral Kalajian
Maral
Kalajian
CMO of Watty, Self-Made Marketer, Influencer

Maral, also known as, ‘Maral from Twitter’, ‘Powerhouse’, ‘energy pack’ or ‘Curly’ is one of the most familiar faces in the Nordic tech scene. Maral is the CMO at Watty, one of the hottest startups in Europe. She is also the co-founder of Peppy Pals, an active ambassador for diversity in tech. Former StartupGrind chapter director and SUP46 Femtech co-organizer.

Maral Kalajian
Guy Kawasaki
Guy
Kawasaki
Chief Evangelist of Canva, Former Chief Evangelist of Apple, Bestselling Author

Guy Kawasaki is a bestselling author, former chief evangelist of Apple, and a former trustee of the Wikimedia Foundation. Today, he is the chief evangelist of Canva (an online graphic design tool), brand ambassador for Mercedes-Benz, and is also an executive fellow of the Haas School of Business (UC Berkeley).

Guy Kawasaki
Dave Knox
Dave
Knox
Brand Marketer, Venture Investor, Startup Advisor

As a brand marketer, venture investor, and startup advisor, Dave Knox bridges the worlds of the Fortune 500 and entrepreneurship and is widely recognized as an industry thought leader.

Dave Knox
Jonas Koffler
Jonas
Koffler
NY Times Bestselling Author, Cofounder, Writer & Producer

Jonas is a New York Times bestselling author, entrepreneur, and storyteller, and an award-winning writer & producer of books, documentaries, and branded entertainment at storytelling boutique Koffler Pictures. Jonas regularly presents at conferences, organizations, and events on topics spanning personal innovation and unconventional thinking, the future of work, creativity and learning, community building, wellness, and resilience.

Jonas Koffler
Joseph Kopser
Joseph
Kopser
Speaker, Author, Investor, Innovation Expert

Joseph Kopser serves as an Executive-in-Residence at the McCombs School of Business.  Prior to that his company, RideScout, was acquired by Mercedes. He served in the Army for 20 years after graduating from West Point and Harvard. He was recognized as a White House Champion of Change in clean energy and won the U.S. DOT Data Innovation Award. Co-author of, Catalyst, he is an advisor for CleanTX.

Joseph Kopser
Russell Ladson
Russell
Ladson
CEO of Drop, Creative Technologist

Russell Ladson is a creative technologist whose work sits at the intersection of emerging technologies, purposeful design, and visual art. His work investigates the use of emerging technologies like AR/VR (XR) to heighten the human-to-human experience through experimental concepts around information discovery in a post-smartphone world.

Russell Ladson
Mark Levy
Mark
Levy
Employee Experience Pioneer, Globally Minded HR Leader

Mark Levy is a seasoned globally-minded Employee Experience Leader who has chosen to work for big-hearted companies and focus on how he can unleash the talents and passions of a company’s employees. Mark was the pioneer of designing the Employee Experience at Airbnb and most recently at Allbirds, showing organizations what is possible when you empower employees and rethink HR.

Mark Levy
Karl Lillrud
Karl
Lillrud
eCommerce Business Expert, Influencer, Coach, Author

Karl Lillrud is a best-selling author of 6 books, two times TEDx speaker. Also, He has been honored as one of the world’s Top 50 eCommerce experts, Top 30 eCommerce influencers, Top 50 speakers on online growth and eCommerce. Karl Lillrud educates and inspires his audience on subjects related to online consumer behavior, internet-based business, e-commerce, and online strategies.

Karl Lillrud
James Norman
James
Norman
Founder & CEO of Pilotly

James Norman is a serial entrepreneur who at the age of 16 built his first online company. While previously he may have been known as a visionary in automotive product planning, over the past 10 years in the media and entertainment industry, he has become a thought leader in over-the-top media and consumer video consumption behaviors.

James Norman
Shegun Otulana
Shegun
Otulana
Founder & CEO of Harmony Ventures Labs, Entrepreneur, Advisor, Mentor, and Investor

Shegun Otulana is the Founder & CEO of Harmony Venture Labs (HVL), a venture studio launching a family of technology companies including Copysmith AI, where he also serves as CEO. He exited his last startup, TheraNest/Therapy Brands for $1.25b in 2021.  Shegun mentors, advises and shares entrepreneurial insights and empowers the next generation of builders. As a seasoned entrepreneur and investor, Shegun contributes to boards like Venture for America and Community Foundation of Greater Birmingham.

Shegun Otulana
Timothy Papandreou
Timothy
Papandreou
Founder and CEO of Emerging Transport Advisors, Global Thought Leader On Emerging Technologies

Timothy Papandreou is a global thought leader on emerging technologies, smart cities, and the future of work. As the Founder and CEO of Emerging Transport Advisors, Tim provides clarity and guidance to investors, companies, and governments on navigating disruptions. With experience from Google X and San Francisco MTA, Tim is a sought-after speaker and mentor in emerging tech spaces.

Timothy Papandreou
Damian Pelliccione
Damian
Pelliccione
CEO & Co-Founder of Revry, World’s First LGBTQ+ Global Content Streaming Network, Blending Business Prowess with Film Production & Education.

Damian Pelliccione (they/them/theirs) is the CEO and Co-Founder of Revry, the world’s first LGBTQ Global Content Streaming Network. With over 15 years of experience in the digital and new media world and as an avid speaker, passionate about supporting the LGBTQ community in both authentic representation and entrepreneurship, Damian has spoken at more than over 250 conferences and film festivals around the world.

Damian Pelliccione
Christie Pitts
Christie
Pitts
Early Stage Investor, Operator, Activist & Inventor

Christie Pitts is an investor, operator, and activist. Formerly VP of Operations at Mahmee and investor at Backstage Capital, she co-founded the VCs for Repro initiative, focused on the intersection of the economy and reproductive justice, and hosts the Moms at Work liveshow to build community, raise awareness, and advocate for better experiences for working moms.

Christie Pitts
Marc Randolph
Marc
Randolph
Netflix Co-Founder, Entrepreneur, Advisor, Bestselling Author, Executive Mentor & Angel Investor

Marc Randolph is a veteran Silicon Valley entrepreneur, advisor, and investor. Although best known as the co-founder and first CEO of Netflix, Marc’s career as an entrepreneur spans more than four decades. He's founded or co-founded six other successful startups, mentored rising entrepreneurs, and invested in numerous successful tech ventures. He is a frequent speaker at industry events, serving variously as a board member, mentor, or executive coach.

Marc Randolph
Bill Reichert
Bill
Reichert
Entrepreneur, Venture Capitalist, Author, Mentor

Bill Reichert is co-founder and Managing Director of Garage Technology Ventures, a well-known seed and early-stage venture capital firm in Silicon Valley. Bill travels around the world giving presentations and workshops on innovation, entrepreneurship, venture capital, and technology trends.

Bill Reichert
Neil Sahota
Neil
Sahota
IBM Master Inventor, AI & Technology Expert, Author

Neil Sahota (萨冠军) is an IBM Master Inventor, United Nations (UN) Advisor, Artificial Intelligence (AI) subject matter expert, Faculty at UC Irvine, and author of Own the A.I. Revolution. With 20+ years of business experience, he works with organizations to create next-generation products/solutions powered by emerging technology.

Neil Sahota
Rodney Sampson
Rodney
Sampson
CEO of Opportunity Hub, Inclusive Startup Ecosystem Builder, Venture Capitalist, Economist

Rodney Sampson, of Opportunity Hub, is heralded as the leading inclusive startup ecosystem builder and is passionate about reducing poverty and wealth gap by advancing the cause of innovation, technology, entrepreneurship and investment as a way of life for all, with an emphasis on socially disadvantaged and under-estimated and sponsored communities in America and beyond.

Rodney Sampson
Kati Schmidt
Kati
Schmidt
Director of International Business Operations at Course Hero

Kati Schmidt is passionate about female entrepreneurship and the transatlantic relationship. As an early former employee of Airbnb, Kati Schmidt worked on launching and scaling Airbnb’s operations in Europe, starting Airbnb’s public policy efforts globally and launching Airbnb Experiences.

Kati Schmidt
Arian Simone
Arian
Simone
Co-Founder & CEO of Fearless Fund, Entrepreneur, Author

Arian Simone is an entrepreneur, philanthropist, investor, best-selling author, and international speaker. She is the Co-Founder and CEO of the Fearless Fund, the First Venture Capital Fund built for WOC by WOC. She has been recognized by Entrepreneur Magazine as one of the “100 Women of Impact".

Arian Simone
Lolita Taub
Lolita
Taub
Latina GP at Ganas Ventures, Community-Driven Investor

Lolita Taub is a GP at Ganas Ventures where she invests in pre-seed and seed community-driven companies in the US and Latin America. She is a woman of color with 13 years in tech, micro-influencer, an international keynote speaker, 2x TEDx speaker whose work in venture capital and tech has been recognized on Forbes, Inc.com, The Huffington Post and Entrepreneur.com among other publications.

Lolita Taub
Aniyia Williams
Aniyia
Williams
Creator, Inventor, Tech Changemaker

Aniyia Williams is a systempreneur, creator, inventor, tech changemaker, and investor. She is a principal on the Responsible Technology team at Omidyar Network, and works to help the tech world live up to its promise of changing lives for the better. She served as Executive Director of Black & Brown Founders, co-founder of Zebras Unite, and founded and led the fashion tech company, Tinsel.

Aniyia Williams
Rodney Williams
Rodney
Williams
Co-founder of SoLo Funds, Award Winning Techpreneur & Marketer

Rodney Williams is the Co-founder of SoLo Funds, the largest community finance platform and the US’s only Black-led Certified B Corp fintech grounded in the hope and mission to build a community that enables financial autonomy for all. Prior to SoLo, Rodney founded LISNR and led the company to over $40M in funding, numerous awards, and partnerships across retail and financial services. Rodney’s career started at Procter & Gamble in brand management where he was a critical catalyst in the company’s digital strategy and started in eCommerce & social media.

Rodney Williams
Jerry Won
Jerry
Won
Keynote Speaker on Authentic Storytelling, Creator Economy, and the Asian American Experience

Jerry Won is the Founder & CEO of Just Like Media, an Asian American storytelling company, home to popular shows Dear Asian Americans, The Janchi Show, and more. He is a leading voice in the Asian American community and speaks to global audiences on authentic storytelling, the Asian American experience, and his personal journey. He is also Founder & CEO of Always Be Creating, the premier community and events platform for Asian content creators.

Jerry Won
Mara Zepeda
Mara
Zepeda
Serial Social Entrepreneur, Co-Founder of Cola Love & Zebras Unite

Mara Zepeda is a co-founder of Cola Love, a catalytic community and economic development design studio in Columbia, South Carolina. She is also the Co-Founder of Zebras Unite, an international and intersectional hybrid cooperative and non-profit creating a more ethical, inclusive, collaborative, and sustainable approach to building businesses. She is a systempreneur and serial social entrepreneur and she speaks about and leads workshops on education, trust, social networks, and the future of business internationally.

Mara Zepeda
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