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2013 Conference - Featured Speakers
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Thursday Pre-Reception Welcome Plenary


SpiegelmanPaul Spiegelman
BerylHealth, Founder and CEO


Paul Spiegelman is founder and chief executive officer of The Beryl Companies, which includes: BerylHealth, a technology-focused patient experience company dedicated to improving relationships between health care providers and consumers; The Beryl Institute, a research and educational entity that publishes information about improving the patient experience and how that activity links to better financial outcomes for health care providers; The Circle, a training company that helps businesses enhance employee engagement and develop more positive workplace cultures; and the Small Giants Community, a global organization that brings together leaders who are focused on values-based business principles.

Paul is leading a unique, people-centric culture that has remarkably high employee and customer retention rates. BerylHealth has won nine "best place to work” awards, including being voted the #2 Best Medium Sized Company to Work for in America. Recently, Spiegelman was honored with the Ernst & Young 2010 Entrepreneur of the Year award.

Paul is a sought-after speaker and author on executive leadership, entrepreneurship, corporate culture, customer relationships and employee engagement. His views have been published in Entrepreneur, The Dallas Morning News, Inc Magazine., Healthcare Financial Management, Leadership Excellence and many other noteworthy publications, as well as in his first internationally published book Why is Everyone Smiling? The Secret Behind Passion, Productivity and Profit. His second book, written by BerylHealth employees, is called Smile Guide: Employee Perspectives on Culture, Loyalty and Profit.

Paul practiced law for two years prior to starting BerylHealth. He holds a bachelor’s degree in history from the University of California Los Angeles and a law degree from Southwestern University in Los Angeles. He mentors MBA students at Texas Christian University and Southern Methodist University, as well as nurse executives in the Robert Wood Johnson Executive Nurse Fellows Program. He also is a member of the American College of Healthcare Executives and on the board of the Entrepreneurs Foundation of North Texas.

Friday AM Outreach Pillar

Sponsored by Sage One


Chris Gill
CEO, SVForum

Chris Gill, CEO of SVForum (, has experience as a business executive in Europe, North America and Asia, with Fortune 100 companies as well as privately funded and venture backed companies, and most recently was President & CEO of SVASE, the Silicon Valley Association of Startup Entrepreneurs.

Previously, he co-founded 8 companies, including The Access Group of companies and Digitalent, with 6 achieving profitable liquidity events. Chris has been an invited speaker on entrepreneurship and venture investing at Babson College, the National Institute of Technology, Trichy, India, and the Oxford University Said Business School, and at startup and venture capital conferences in cities around the world. In addition, for 2 years, Chris coached the winning teams of the global Microsoft Innovation Accelerator program, on business and entrepreneurship.

Chris is a member of Sand Hill Angels (, and a Board Member of the Mission College Center for Innovation and Technology. He has been featured in and written articles on business and technology issues for the Financial Times, Business Week, Linux Journal and other publications, and hosts the television show "The Silicon Valley Entrepreneur.” Chris was awarded a BSc in Computer Science from Manchester University (UK).

Friday AM Research Pillar

 Sponsored by NCIIA

Steve Blank
K & S Ranch, Serial Entrepreneur


A RETIRED EIGHT-TIME SERIAL ENTREPRENEUR, Steve’s insight that startups are not small versions of large companies is reshaping the way startups are built and how entrepreneurship is taught. His observation that large companies execute business models, but startups search for them, led him to realize that startups need their own tools, different than those used to manage existing companies.

Steve’s first tool for startups, the Customer Development methodology, spawned the Lean Startup movement. The fundamentals of Customer Development are detailed in Blank’s first book, The Four Steps to the Epiphany (2003), which together with his blog,, is considered required reading among entrepreneurs, investors and established companies throughout the world. His second book, The Startup Owner’s Manual, was published in March 2012. This step-by-step guide to building a successful company incorporates the best practices, lessons and tips that have swept the startup world in the past decade.

Blank teaches Customer Development and entrepreneurship at Stanford University, U.C. Berkeley Haas Business School and Columbia University, and his Customer Development process is taught at Universities throughout the world. In 2011, he developed the Lean LaunchPad, a hands-on class that integrates Business Model design and Customer Development into practice through fast-paced, real-world customer interaction and business model iteration. In 2011, the National Science Foundation adopted Blank’s class for its Innovation Corps (I-Corps), training teams of the nation’s top scientists and engineers, to take their ideas out of the university lab and into the commercial marketplace.

Steve is a prolific writer and speaker who enjoys teaching young entrepreneurs. In 2009, he earned the Stanford University Undergraduate Teaching Award in Management Science and Engineering. In 2010, he earned the Earl F. Cheit Outstanding Teaching Award at U.C. Berkeley Haas School of Business. The San Jose Mercury News listed him as one of the 10 Influencers in Silicon Valley. Despite these accolades and many others, Steve says he might well have been voted "least likely to succeed” in his New York City high school class.

Friday PM Policy Pillar


W. Kenneth Yancey, Jr.
Chief Executive Officer, SCORE Association

W. Kenneth Yancey, Jr. currently serves as CEO of the SCORE Association, a position he has held since 1993. During his tenure with SCORE, Mr. Yancey has been responsible for developing SCORE into a one of the most efficient, effective job creation and business formation engines in the nation. SCORE has served more than 9.5 million existing and aspiring small business owners since inception and helps to create more than 58,000 new businesses and over 71,000 new jobs annually. Mr. Yancey empowers and inspires 364 chapters SCORE Chapters and 13,000 volunteer mentors across the nation. Prior to joining SCORE, Yancey served as Executive Director for the National Business Association.

Recognized as one of the nation's leading advocates for small business, Mr. Yancey represents SCORE nationally before the media, industry leaders and in Congressional testimony. He serves on the Small Business Advisory Council of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and, alongside President Obama, First Lady Michele Obama and Dr. Jill Biden; he was involved in the launch of the national Joining Forces Initiative in the summer of 2011.

Mr. Yancey speaks across the country on the topics of entrepreneurship, nonprofit management, small business trends and volunteer mentoring, appearing on ABC, NBC, CBS, MSNBC, CNN, CNBC, Fox News and PBS. He is also a frequent guest on several radio shows including Small Business Advocate, Build Your Business, Small Business Trends and Biz Talk. He serves as a member of the HuffPost Small Business Board of Directors and has been honored with numerous awards including 2011 Small Business Influencer Champion, the USA Freedom Corp Award of Excellence, the American Society of Association Executives Summit Award and the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Future of Entrepreneurship Education Summit.

A Texas native, Mr. Yancey received a bachelor’s degree in business administration and finance from Texas A&M University. He now resides in Northern Virginia with his wife of 18 years and two sons and is an active outdoorsman, leader in the Boy Scouts of America, and little league football coach.

 Saturday AM Pedagogy Pillar


Jeff Stamp
Founder, Bold Thinking


Dr. Jeffrey Stamp has over 25 years of worldwide experience in bringing out the creative best in business professionals and university students. Dr. Stamp is recognized worldwide as a master creative practitioner and has developed numerous methods that are designed to accelerate 'Discovery Thinking' and cognitive fluidity. Dr. Stamp also resides as chair of entrepreneurship and innovation at the University of North Dakota, which was ranked thirteenth in the 2008 review of the top twenty-five undergraduate programs in entrepreneurship by Entrepreneur Magazine and the Princeton Review of the 900 universities and college programs in the US. In 2008 Dr. Stamp was awarded the prestigious Excellence in Entrepreneurship Education Award from the Acton Foundation. His research is focused on the creative and cognitive processes that entrepreneurs use in idea creation, technology innovation, and opportunity recognition.

You will recognize Dr. Stamp by the products he has created while in corporate life. He was the inventor, creator, and brand manager of the "Baked Lays", for PepsiCo's snack division Frito-Lay, which achieved $230 million in first year sales and was named by Ernst and Young as the top brand introduction in the 90's for the food sector.

After his corporate life, Dr. Stamp built his own successful business, as a master brand innovator in both consumer goods and technology arenas. After selling his first venture, he served for six years as the Chief Trained Brain and Vice President of Technology for Richard Saunders' International Eureka! Ranch, a top new product and service creativity think tank. In recognition of their original R&D efforts, Dr. Stamp and his team were awarded the "George Land World-Class Innovator Award" in 1999 from the Innovation Network and Fast Company magazine. Products created by Dr. Stamp appear in markets worldwide.

Dr. Stamp believes that it is no longer enough to have global awareness - we have to acquire global prowess. Dr. Stamp has lived in five and worked in more than a dozen countries including China, India, Thailand, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, England, Northern Ireland, the Netherlands, Germany, Austria, Venezuela, Mexico, and Canada. Areas of work included food processing, advanced agriculture, product development, manufacturing development, economic development and venture capital arenas.

Dr. Stamp earned his PhD from the University of Minnesota and is highly sought as a speaker, giving an average of forty-five keynotes nationwide each year to conferences, corporate events, public forums, educational workshops, and invited lectures in his unique, engaging, and experiential style.

 Saturday Luncheon


Mark Gilbreath
Liquid Space, Co-Founder and CEO

Mark Gilbreath is the co-founder and CEO of LiquidSpace, a marketplace connecting people seeking flexible workspace with venues offering great workspaces to share, in real-time. LiquidSpace has completed more than 50,000 transactions since launching in the San Francisco Bay Area mid last year and is currently connecting mobile workers to over 1,000 great workspaces across the US.




Angela McKee
Retail Manager, La Cocina

Angela is the Retail and Catering Manager at the San Francisco based non-profit, La Cocina. Angela holds a Master’s degree in Food Studies and Food Systems from New York University.Her graduate work focused on the provocation of food cravings by popular media. This led to extensive research into what makes food products appealing to the public and a deep understanding of product packaging. In addition, Angela has worked in marketing for a respected consulting firm, and as part of the editorial team at a top ranking food magazine.She manages La Cocina’s revenue streams which include a catering program, a gift box distribution program, and a retail space in the San Francisco Ferry Building. At La Cocina, Angela is committed to seeing the success of all La Cocina participants and is focused on creating retail spaces that will promote the advancement of their client’s products.

La Cocina is a ground-breaking business incubator designed to reduce the obstacles that often prevent entrepreneurs from creating successful and sustainable small businesses. By providing shared resources and an array of industry-specific services, business incubators ensure small businesses can succeed. La Cocina follows this model by providing commercial kitchen space and technical assistance focusing on women and immigrant entrepreneurs who are launching, growing and formalizing food businesses.La Cocina provides a platform for these motivated entrepreneurs to hone their skills and successfully transition into the highly regulated and competitive food industry.

Sunday AM Plenary

Michael Houlihan
Barefoot Wine Founder

Michael is a serial entrepreneur, industry reformer, and brand builder.  His consulting company, Great Thinks helps small and medium size businesses build their brands and achieve profitability. 

Barefoot Wine Founder, February 2005 – Present As a keynote speaker, author and consultant, Michael focuses on the proven Business and Marketing principles he learned growing the Barefoot Wine Brand. Using out-of-the-box thinking, pay-for-performance, positive culture, channel distribution management, and "Worthy Cause Marketing" he took an obscure brand to a National and International Best Selling American wine icon. He shares his winning business philosophies in his new book, "The Barefoot Spirit.” 

Houlihan and Jones, April 2010 – Present Michael is a partner with Martin Jones in a consulting firm assisting small and medium size wine country businesses to develop their brands, become more efficient, and achieve profitability. 

Founder, President and CEO of Barefoot Wines, June 1985 – January 2005 With no money and no knowledge of the industry, Michael started and built the famous Barefoot Wine brand. Michael earned the industry’s top sales awards, including "Trend Setter, "Fast Track Growth Brand" and "Hot Brand" for sales and growth in 2003 and 2004 – all without advertising. In 2005, he successfully sold the brand to E&J Gallo.  During the next year, he worked with them as a business consultant to maintain Barefoot’s entrepreneurial character and Worthy Cause Marketing program. 

Recent speaking engagements: University of California at Davis, California State University at Sonoma, Ohio State University School of Entrepreneurialism, Wine Industry Financial Symposium, Wine Industry Technology Symposium, Direct to Consumer Symposium Michael recently presented a webinar on Worthy Cause Marketing, and has been interviewed several times on nationally syndicated business radio programs.

You Tube Video       

The Barefoot Spirit!/barefoot_spirit  

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