Watermark Entrepreneur Conference 2017
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Watermark Entrepreneur Conference 2017

When: Tuesday, Oct. 17, 2017
Where: Fenwick & West
801 California St.
Mountain View, California 
United States
Contact: Mary Thorsby

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Directions to Fenwick & West

Prestige Members: Complimentary   |   Basic Members: $90  |   Members Bring a Guest for $135   |  Non-Members: $150

WE ARE SOLD OUT! Please send us an email if you'd like to join our wait list.

Women are a more powerful presence in business than ever, as entrepreneurs and corporate leaders. Join us for our popular Watermark Entrepreneur Conference, packed with real-world know-how, firsthand experiences and an in-depth look at the entrepreneurial climate today – all designed to help entrepreneurial women take their businesses (and their careers) to the next level.

Featuring Stacy Brown-Philpot, CEO, TaskRabbit, and Amy Chang, Founder, Accompany.

Here's what attendees said about our 2016 Entrepreneur Conference:

• "Excellent content and stellar speakers. Extremely candid, direct and useful presentations."
• "An inspirational series of presentations. I am new to entrepreneurship and the conference had elements that were useful for me now, presented things for me to be cognizant of in the near future as well as presenting long-term issues to keep in mind going forward. Personable speakers, meaty presentations – a great event!"
• "I’m considering joining Watermark, and the conference only reaffirmed my interest and choice. Thank you! Very inspiring, innovative and a great platform for women."

2017 Agenda, at a Glance

9:30 a.m. Registration, Breakfast and Networking

10 a.m. Welcome
Marlene Williamson, CEO, Watermark

10:10 a.m. Fireside Chat with Shellye Archambeau, CEO, MetricStream, interviewing Stacy Brown-Philpot, CEO, TaskRabbit
You've created your company and you're continuing to run like a pro. What's it take to deliver high performance every day? How do you tap into your employees' top skills and talents? How do you keep a step ahead of the competition? Don't miss this fascinating discussion between two of Silicon Valley's most celebrated CEOs and entrepreneurs.


10:50 a.m. Panel: Follow the Money
What are funders looking for – and where do you find them? And how do you best prepare? This panel covers the unique challenges – and opportunities – women face when it comes to fundraising.

Lisa Hannah, CEO, 360Three
Jillian Manus, Managing Partner, Structure Capital
Gabriela Sapp, Co-Founder, Equitable Growth Solutions
Moderator: Nancy Hayes, Investor, Golden Seeds

11:45 p.m. Girls Scouts Presentation
As part of Watermark's commitment to support girls' leadership programs, a portion of our conference proceeds will benefit the Girl Scouts of Northern California. Join us as we hear firsthand how Girl Scouts continues to make such a huge difference in young girls' lives – especially through STEM education.

12 p.m. Lunch

12:50 p.m. Fireside Chat with Gordy Davidson, Partner, Fenwick & West, interviewing Amy Chang, CEO and Founder, Accompany
How do you know when you've truly got the entrepreneurial spirit? Are you always clear on your direction – or do you go down a few different paths before finding the right one? Join Gordy Davidson and Amy Chang as they talk about the best parts of being an entrepreneur, the toughest obstacles and the lessons learned – including those that helped Amy land a seat on the boards of directors for Procter & Gamble and Cisco.

1:30 p.m. Breakouts – Choose Two

Risk Taking: Small Steps vs. Giant Leaps
If the fear of risk-taking is holding you back, you might consider taking smaller steps forward with your venture instead of a full-out giant leap. This panel has plenty of experience in both and will share what works, what doesn’t and how to decide which approach to take.

Anne Cocquyt, Founder, The GUILD
Roshell Rosemond Rinkins, Founder, Liquid Courage Cosmetics
Julia Schloss, Co-Owner, Luisa Spagnoli
Moderator: Vaneese Johnson, Owner, The Boldness Coach

Team Building is Everything
Why struggle to go it alone when you can attract other brilliant minds who embrace your vision and want to help you achieve it? This panel will cover when and how to hire vs. using consultants and part-time help, as well as how to compensate when cash is limited and other key considerations necessary to building a great team.

Geraldine Convento and Lauren Messmer, Co-Owners, MeetGeraldine
Diane Flynn, Co-Founder and CEO, ReBoot Accel
Julie Gordon White, Founder, The WELL for Women Entrepreneurs
Moderator: Amy Love, Vice President, Corporate Marketing, TriNet

Marketing That's Creative – Not Costly
How do you cut through the noise and get your business noticed on a barely there budget? This panel will show you how to distinguish your brand and build your following – and your sales – without breaking the bank.

Eileen Gordon, Founder, Barnraiser
Grace Kraaijvanger, Founder, The Hivery
Nona Lim, Founder, Nona Lim Foods
Moderator: Linda Popky, Founder and President, Leverage2Market Associates

2:15 p.m. Breakouts Repeat

3-3:15 p.m. Networking Break

3:15 p.m. The Big Pitch Competition
Many thanks for all the wonderful applications! We're reviewing them now and will select three entrepreneurs to present for five minutes apiece, followed by a three-minute Q&A and five minutes of direct feedback from our panel of expert judges including VCs – the friendly, dolphin kind; no sharks here! Added bonus: The three presenters will receive a pitch training session with Nathan Gold, The Demo Coach, prior to the conference!

Alicia Castillo Holley, Founder, The Wealthing Institute
Christie Pitts, Partner and Chief of Staff, BackStage Capital
Prashant Shah, Chair, TiE Angels Silicon Valley; Venture Partner, Monta Vista Capital
Moderator: Susan Lucas-Conwell, Executive Vice President, CSIRO US

4:30 p.m. Closing Networking Reception

Speaker Bios

Shellye Archambeau
is CEO of MetricStream, a governance, risk, compliance and quality software company that helps corporations comply with any number of rules, regulations and mandates. She is recognized as one of the Top Women of Influence in Silicon Valley and a Game Changer by theRegistryBayArea.com.

Shellye is a past winner of Watermark's Make Your Mark Award and serves on the boards of Verizon Communications, Nordstrom and Silicon Valley Leadership Group. @ShelArchambeau


Stacy Brown-Philpot is CEO of TaskRabbit. Prior to joining the company, she spent nearly a decade at Google heading online sales and operations. In 2015, Stacy was named one of Fortune's 40 Under 40 and in 2016 named a Henry Crown Fellow by the Aspen Institute. She also serves on the boards of HP Inc. and Nordstrom.

Stacy earned her Economics degree from the Wharton School of Business and an MBA from Stanford University. @TaskRabbit



Alicia Castillo Holley helps individuals and organizations align purpose, passion, talent and profits. A serial entrepreneur, she was instrumental in the development of the venture capital industry in Chile, where she designed and founded the country’s first Centre for Entrepreneurship and later the first seed capital fund. She has been an active angel investor for more than 20 years and is a member of Sand Hill Angels. She also developed and teaches the online program, womengetfunded.com.

Alicia has authored several books and spoken in more than 40 countries on innovation, entrepreneurship, venture capital and passion (including teaching a seminar to both men and women in Saudi Arabia). In 2012, she was co-chair of the Diana Conference in Perth, Australia, and she is an outspoken supporter of minorities in the world of high-tech entrepreneurship and investment. Philanthropically, she supports initiatives that foster democracy, domestic harmony and happiness.

An engineer by training, Alicia earned her MBA from Babson College and her PhD in Finance and Entrepreneurship from the University of Western Australia. @aliciacastillo

Amy Chang is Founder and CEO of Accompany, a relationship intelligence platform for sales professionals and executives. She is an ex-Google exec who ran Google Analytics for seven years, growing it from >1% to more than 70% market share. Amy serves on the boards of Procter & Gamble, Cisco and previously served on the Splunk and Informatica boards, as well as Target's Digital Advisory Council. 

Early in her career, Amy ran product for paid search and affiliates at eBay and worked as a consultant at McKinsey. She's an advisor to Hubspot, Optimizely, ClearSlide, BloomReach, Origami Logic and Datorama.

Amy earned her Electrical Engineering undergraduate and master's degrees from Stanford University. @_amychang


Anne Cocquyt is the Founder and CEO of The GUILD, a novel networking solution that helps female entrepreneurs and women in business build stronger networks. The idea came to her after an eventful career on three different continents, during which she experienced the importance of a strong network. Thanks to her expertise in computer and data science and her passion for building communities around causes paired with her ability to inspire, The GUILD has thousands of members, including, through our special partnership, numerous Watermark members.

Prior to The GUILD, Anne worked at Genentech, Shell, Telekom, Orange, T-Mobile and Philips, and she continues to share her digital health and startup expertise. She is a graduate of Eberhard-Karls-Universität Tübingen. @Anne Cocquyt   @getguilded

Geraldine Convento is the Founder of MeetGeraldine, a full-service marketing agency dedicated to working with growing companies. Her in-depth knowledge of web development, marketing and her proprietary "SEO 7" method has led to the success of businesses worldwide. Geraldine holds over 20 years of experience within these industries and has led many of the most talented web development and graphic design production teams in the Bay Area.

A San Francisco Bay Area native, Geraldine concluded at a very young age that owning her own business would allow her to create more leisure time for herself as an adult. She started her career working for corporations and small businesses within the industries of marketing, advertising and event planning. After years of observing their processes and graduating with her business degree in 2004, she organically pursued entrepreneurship through her hobbies – music, vinyl record collecting and film production. @MeetGeraldine


Gordy Davidson is a Partner at Fenwick & West, advising high-technology, clean technology and life sciences companies. His clients range from startups to Fortune 1000 companies. Gordy has worked on more than 50 public offerings and has represented boards of directors, audit committees and executives in numerous special investigations. Gordy graduated from Stanford Law School, where he was a member of the Order of the Coif.

Gordy was honored with Watermark's first Bill Campbell Award for the "Man Who Gets It" at the 2016 Make Your Mark Awards. @FenwickWest


Diane Flynn is Co-Founder and CEO of ReBoot Accel, which helps women returning to the workforce after taking a work pause. ReBoot gets women current, connected and confident by teaching essential workplace tech skills and providing a community of like-minded returners. Diane also consults with Fortune 500 companies interested in tapping this pipeline of talent. ReBoot was recently featured on The Today Show, The Wall Street Journal, Forbes, ABC Business News and PRI’s The TakeAway, representing the newfound interest in hiring this growing and energized talent pool.  

Diane previously served as Chief Marketing Officer of GSVlabs, a marketing executive at Electronic Arts and an associate consultant at The Boston Consulting Group. She earned her Economics degree from Stanford University and her MBA from Harvard. @dianereboot


Eileen Gordon is the Founder of Barnraiser, a place to meet the people behind projects and products that create a healthy community. Eileen is an entrepreneur and business partner with her husband, Chef Michael Chiarello. Her journey to sustainable food and farming, as well as passion for kids' education, came from her farming family in Northern California, long-time Swiss dairy ranchers and now cheese makers (Pt. Reyes Original Blue Cheese).

An indirect path from Apple's education group to the Napa Valley leads to her current obsession with the makers within the clean, good food movement, and with giving the next generation power over their food options – along with an appreciation for the joys of making and growing things. @barnraiser



Julie Gordon White is an award-winning entrepreneur, business coach, bestselling business author and TEDx speaker. She has advised thousands of business owners as the Founder and CEO of BlueKey Mergers & Acquisitions, a multimillion dollar firm she founded in 2004, through her bestselling book, EXIT! 12 Steps to Sell Your Business for the Price You Deserve and via national speaking engagements.

In 2012, Julie began living her true passion as the Founder of The WELL for Women Entrepreneurs, teaching women how to grow their businesses – and sell them – for $1 million and above, through step-by-step training and coaching programs, media, speaking and signature events.

Julie is a featured small business expert for Google Small Business and Intuit QuickBooks, and has been quoted in Inc. Magazine, Entrepreneur, Bloomberg Businessweek.com, The New York Times, Enterprising Women, Black Enterprise and San Francisco Business Times. In 2017, she will release her new book, 100K Concept: The Freedom Formula for Women & Girls. Her companion $100K Show podcast is available on iTunes. Julie is a University of California-Davis graduate. @JulieatTheWELL

Lisa Hannah is the CEO of 360Three, which helps businesses launch, scale and become profitable by stepping in as their interim CEO, COO, CFO and CMO/CRO as needed until the companies are sustainable and ready for funding. The goal is to create foundationally stable companies that can increase revenues and attract investment dollars.

Lisa is also the Managing Partner of Act 5, which is the investment arm of her consulting business. She sits on many pitch panels throughout the Bay Area and frequently advises women who are, or want to be, entrepreneurs and business leaders. @360News



Nancy Hayes is an angel investor and a member of the Golden Seeds angel group, which focuses on investing in women-led, high-growth companies. Prior to angel investing, Nancy was a senior executive at IBM. She later became the CEO of an innovative nonprofit organization that focused on seriously ill children – and then became President and CEO of a social services agency which served frail elderly and disabled adults.

In 2005, Nancy was named Dean of the College of Business at San Francisco State University and, after six years in that role, she served as CFO of the university. In 2013, Nancy co-founded MoolaHoop, a rewards-based crowdfunding site for women with small businesses. She earned her MBA in Finance from the University of Chicago. @nancyhayes


Vaneese Johnson is The Boldness Coach, helping business professionals to be bold in their approach to amplify their brand presence, grow their business and make a purposeful difference in the world. Vaneese brings her extensive entrepreneurial experience in her work with advising senior leaders, high-performing business professionals and small business executives on professional branding, business development, leadership and communication.

Her strategic process allows clients to better connect their talents, skills and values across diverse groups and industries, resulting in relevant, high-impact engagement. Her clients include Hewlett Packard, Wells Fargo, Nestle, Cisco, Lee Hecht Harrison, Kaiser Permanente and Chevron. @BoldnessCoach



Grace Kraaijvanger is the Founder and visionary of The Hivery, one of the first women’s-centric co-working spaces, located in Mill Valley.

She began her career performing all over the world as a professional ballet and modern dancer. After retiring from dance, she was a marketing leader and consultant in the Bay Area for clients such as Oracle, PeopleSoft, Intuit, Charles Schwab and SiriusDecisions, where she successfully built and led multi-million dollar business units for large-scale companies.

Grace discovered that her true passion is to bring women together to cultivate themselves and pursue those things that instill creativity, passion and purpose. Since the founding of The Hivery, Grace’s vision has inspired thousands of women, with a bold mission to serve and empower women all over the world. @TheHivery


Nona Lim is the Founder of a line of bone broths, soups and ramen noodles sold through Whole Foods Market nationwide and many other retailers. Several Nona Lim products have won awards including SOFI, and many have been featured in magazines such as Prevention, Clean Eating, Food and Wine and Rachel Ray. She received the SBA Emerging Small Business award in 2016.

As a former athlete, Nona was constantly seeking ways to improve her performance. She discovered the power of food as medicine. Her body and brain would only function at peak performance or recover faster with whole, clean foods. So she designed a healing, nutrient-dense, non-inflammatory meal program made with fresh, plant-rich, whole food ingredients with clean preparations made from scratch.

Nona is proud to have built her business in Oakland near a hub of other artisan food manufacturers.  @NonaLimFoods

Amy Love is Vice President of Corporate Marketing for TriNet, which delivers comprehensive human resources management services, including compliance, payroll and employee benefits, enabling its 14,000 customers to focus on what they do best – running their companies.
Amy’s past experiences include serving as CMO for Violin Memory and as a corporate officer with NetApp, where she held the positions of VP Brand & Demand, Acting CMO and VP Brand & Communications. Amy also founded the highly acclaimed REAL SPORTS magazine and has served as a corporate officer with a successful exit with PicScout (sold to Getty Images). 

Amy has taught marketing at San Jose State University and co-designed an MBA class at Stanford University titled Entrepreneurship from the Perspective of Women. Amy is also a past CEO of the Forum for Women Entrepreneurs and Executives (precursor to Watermark) and serves today on the organization’s Emeritus board and as co-lead of Watermark’s CMO Network. Amy has been recognized by the Harvard Business School Alumni Association Top 100 Women Alumnae in the Bay Area, among other honors. Amy is a member of the Board of Advisors, Department of Marketing, for the University of San Francisco. @amydlove  @TriNet

Susan Lucas-Conwell is Executive Vice President for CSIRO US. She is well-known for her collaborative leadership and ability to build successful teams, communities and strategic alliances. She is a past winner of Watermark's Make Your Mark Award and the Innovator Spotlight Award from Frost & Sullivan.

Susan earned her undergraduate degree with honors from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, master's degree from Johns Hopkins and MBA from the University of Pennsylvania.



Jillian Manus is the Managing Partner of Structure Capital, a Silicon Valley-based VC firm that invests in early-stage technology companies. She provides strategic support to founding teams focused on creating value in underutilized assets and excess capacity. Jillian serves on the boards of several of her portfolio companies including Hyp3r, Iggbo and Liquiglide. Prior to Structure Capital, Jillian was Founder of Broad Strategy, Manus Media and Global Goal Sports Management.

A frequent public speaker, Jillian provides business and political commentary for Bloomberg and serves as a co-host on the podcast The Pitch. She attended the University of Oxford and NYU, where she served on the Board of Trustees. She was named one of the Most Influential Women in Bay Area Business 2017 by the San Francisco Business Times. @ManusJillian

Lauren Messmer grew up in a small town in Northern California. Her parents were entrepreneurs, which was the foundation of her own desire to be a business owner. Her father's words still frequently ring in her ears, "Take care of your team, and they will take care of you."

Today, Lauren helps other businesses owners grow their companies and expand their teams through business and marketing strategy. She is co-owner and Director of Business Strategy for MeetGeraldine, a full-service marketing agency dedicated to working with growing companies. MeetGeraldine offers a range of services, including brand development, marketing and operational growth strategies, web development, graphic design, printing and web maintenance. 

Lauren earned her MBA from Mills College. @LaurenMessmer   @MeetGeraldine


Christie Pitts is Partner and Chief of Staff of Backstage Capital. She is responsible for guiding the Crew to ensure Backstage runs smoothly toward its mission as well as joining Managing Partner, Arlan Hamilton, in making investment decisions (aka signing Headliners!).

Christie has extensive experience creating valuable partnerships between startups and Fortune 500 top 20 corporations, and joins Backstage from her role as Venture Development Manager at Verizon Ventures.

Christie earned her business administration degree from San Jose State University and her MBA from University of Phoenix. @imchristiepitts

Linda Popky is the Founder and President of Leverage2Market® Associates, which helps organizations transform their business through marketing. She is the author of Marketing Above the Noise: Achieve Strategic Advantage with Marketing that Matters. Her expertise includes corporate marketing, communications and messaging, marketing team development, facilitation, sales training and support, partner and channel programs, market sizing and intelligence, field marketing, marketing operations, industry/market development and product marketing.

Linda has served as an advisor for the Astia business incubator and is a regular conference speaker for corporate, non-profit and professional associations. She's been quoted and featured in a variety of online and print publications, including Business Week, Fortune Small Business, Fast Company, the San Francisco Chronicle and the San Jose/Silicon Valley Business Journal. Linda earned her Communications degree and MBA from Boston University. @popky

Roshell Rinkins is the Founder of Liquid Courage Cosmetics, a world-class beauty lifestyle movement providing lipsticks and apparel for more than 20,000 beauty enthusiasts conquering life, family, career and everything in between. She is a member of the Silicon Valley Pipeline Angels co-hort, serves on the board of Pentorship and is a former board member of the Carl H. Linder YMCA. Roshell founded The PowHER brunch, an empowering conversation for women seeking to take their brand to the next level.

Roshell earned her BA and MBA from Florida A&M University. She was recently named 40 Under 40 by the P&G Alumni network and has been featured in the Huffington Post and honored by NASDAQ. @RoshellRinkins


Gabriela Sapp is the co-founder of Equitable Growth Solutions, a business consulting company that delivers business solutions and accessibility to financial resources. Gabriela is a lead capital consultant for the San Francisco Small Business Development Center (SBDC), and also works with the California Community Colleges to support entrepreneurial curriculum, training and work-based learning programs to increase enrollment and student success. Currently, Gabriela serves on the board of directors of the California Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.

Gabriela has in-depth business and financial consulting experience in the banking industry and for economic development organizations in the San Francisco Bay Area. From 2009 to 2013, she was the Associate Director of the SF SBDC, where she managed business counseling and training programs for emerging and established small businesses.

Julia Schloss and her business partner, Irene Oykhman, collaborated with the Italian brand, Luisa Spagnoli, to bring the first Luisa Spagnoli store to the United States. The store opened in May 2016, at the Stanford Shopping Center.

The Luisa Spagnoli brand was established in 1928 and has become an iconic women’s luxury apparel brand, known for its high style, design, excellent quality and exceptional service offered at a sensible price point. The brand has more 150 stores in Italy and 50 stores throughout Europe and the Middle East.

In addition, Julia and Irene have developed their Bayview Residential Brokerage company from a two-agent startup into a diversified full-service mortgage and real estate brokerage, with more than 150 agents and broker associates. Julia is a licensed attorney and earned her MBA from the Carnegie Mellon Graduate School of Management.


Prashant Shah has been an early stage venture investor since 2001, focusing on enterprise and infrastructure software. Currently, he is Chair of TiE Angels Silicon Valley, and a venture partner with Monta Vista Capital. Previously, he was with Hummer Winblad Venture Partners. On the community front, Prashant is an active mentor as a Charter Member of TiE, and formerly served on the boards of directors for TiE Silicon Valley and for Astia.

Prashant spent many years defining and launching high tech products. His background spans all seven layers of the OSI stack with product management roles at enCommerce (acquired by Entrust), Cypress Semiconductor and AT&T. Prashant earned his Electrical Engineering degree from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and his MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. @prashca


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