Past event…

Event Ended





Sep 27
  • 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


Sep 28
  • 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


Sep 29
  • 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

Doug Juanarena

VP & Head of Blacksburg Operations at Rackspace Hosting

Doug Juanarena is a serial entrepreneur responsible for developing and commercializing a variety of technologies and companies over his career.

He grew up on USAF bases throughout the U.S. and Europe. After graduating from high school in Spain, he attended Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, earning a BS in Electrical Engineering. After graduation, Mr. Juanarena was employed at the NASA Langley Research Center in the field of sensor and instrumentation development.In January 1996, Mr. Juanarena sold Pressure Systems to The Roxboro Group PLC of Cambridge, England, remaining as President/CEO until July of 2000. In August of 2000, he co-founded Luna Technologies in Blacksburg, Virginia serving as its President and CEO. In August of 2005 he founded GenTek Ventures located in the Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center. In November 2010 he joined Rackspace Hosting as VP and site leader for the company’s Blacksburg software development center.

Tier 2 Sponsors

Kevin Bloomfield

President and CEO at NetVentures

Kevin co-founded & currently serves as president & CEO of NetVentures. He is responsible for strategy, sales, team development and new market identification.

Outside of NetVentures, Kevin currently sits on the board of directors for the Roanoke Regional Small Business Development Center, is a member of the Corporate Advisory Committee for North Cross School, is an Elder and Executive Committee representative at Second Presbyterian Roanoke.

Kevin Minnick

VP Product Management, Cloud at Rackspace Hosting

Kevin Minnick was a co-founder of the Blacksburg, VA start-up Kevin, Bill Boebel, and Pat Matthews started the company during the dot-com boom in late 1999, just before the bust in early 2000. The team met at Virginia Tech and decided to start a dot-com business 6 months before graduation. Persevering through several tough years and a few pivots, the team grew into the industry leader in business-class email hosting.

Today, Kevin continues to lead over 200 people across 5 cities (San Francisco, Atlanta, San Antonio, Blacksburg, and Austin) for Rackspace. He focuses most of his time on Cloud Computing, OpenStack, open-source, and still fiddles in the email business from time-to-time. Kevin holds a Computer Science degree from Virginia Tech. Kevin, his wife, and 2 children recently relocated back to Blacksburg.

Jennifer O'Daniel

Senior Associate at CIT GAP Funds

Jennifer O’Daniel joined CIT GAP Funds in 2003, and is responsible for sourcing, diligencing and closing of seed and early stage investments.

As part of the investment team, O'Daniel has been part of transactions in over 60 seed and early-stage companies via CIT GAP Funds, which has been recognized by Entrepreneur Magazine's Annual VC100 list since 2006.

O’Daniel currently sits on the board of directors for The Richmond Venture Forum, the board of advisors for, is a mentor for Founder's Institute and the Fort accelerator, and has previously served on the boards of Leadership Fairfax, Northern Virginia Therapeutic Riding Program, Virginia Tech Business Technology Center, MIT Enterprise Forum, and William and Mary's Technology and Business Center.

Tier 3 Sponsors

Eddie Amos

Chief Technology Officer - Meridium Software

In his current role, Eddie focuses on software strategy, developers and on-line communities.

Prior to this role, Eddie was the Vice President of Developer Marketing and Evangelism. His team was responsible for the marketing, strategy and external evangelism of Junos and the Junos Space Platform. During his tenure, the group launched the Juniper Developer Network and increased the number of active developers by over 500%.

He graduated from Virginia Tech and later received a Masters of Science Degree from American University in Washington, DC. He has completed Executive Management Classes and Programs from Wharton, Kellogg, Columbia and is currently completing his Ph.D in Computer Science.

When not working, Eddie loves helping various nonprofit organizations, spending time with family and friends, writing code, studying or talking about software (to anyone who will listen).

Brian Duvall

CEO of Duvall Consulting LLC   |   LinkedIn

Brian Duvall is the CEO of Duvall Consulting LLC, the nation's leading authority on Mind$hare Multipliers. He helps businesses position as THE leader in their industry by creating a massive presence of expertise, winning mind share and dominating market share.

In 2002 he was named one of the region's Top 20 Under 40 and he was named the 2011 Small Business Advocate of the Year. In 2011 he donated nearly a quarter million dollars in cash and services to the local community.

Brian and his wife Carol were featured in Valley Business Front as Entrepreneurial Parents and in The Roanoker as Hometown Heroes for their work as foster parents.

James Creekmore

Owner of The Creekmore Law Firm   |   LinkedIn

James Creekmore is the owner of The Creekmore Law Firm PC in Blacksburg, Virginia. The Firm’s practice is balanced between business litigation and business counseling, with particular attention given to the protection and enforcement of its clients' intellectual property rights. Patents, trademarks, copyrights, trade secrets, and business agreements such as noncompetition, nondisclosure, nonsolicitation and licensing agreements, as well as other business competition issues, frequently are the focus of the Firm’s client engagements and litigation matters. James and his team spend a lot of time with entrepreneurs and emerging and growing companies helping them understand and navigate the laws that pertain to virtually every aspect of their operation, and helping position them for growth and success in the highly competitive and fast-paced markets in which they exist.

James enjoys an AV certification rating by the Martindale-Hubbell attorney rating system – the highest achievable in both legal ability and ethical standards - and consistently is selected by his peers as one of Virginia’ s “Legal Elite” and as a Virginia “Super Lawyer” in the field of Intellectual Property Law.

In 2011, The Creekmore Law Firm was honored by the Montgomery County Chamber of Commerce as its Small Business of the Year.

Russ Ellis

President at Xcellos Corporation

Russ Ellis is an entrepreneur by choice, and has founded or co-founded multiple companies, primarily in the software and internet services sectors over the past 25 years.

These companies ranged from building social media applications (current), to manufacturing and marketing Bloody Mary mixes, to providing internet based HR services to small and medium sized businesses, to developing electronic form and document management software for the insurance and financial services industry. During this run, in excess of $25MM in venture capital was raised to provide explosive growth capability for two of these companies. In 2007, Russ received the High Tech Entrepreneur award from the RBTC.

Russ also serves on the boards of two privately held software companies and four non-profit foundations in the Roanoke-Blacksburg region.

John J. “Jack” Lesko

Associate Dean for Research & Graduate Studies, Virginia Tech

Co-Founder of PowerHub Sytems, Dr. John “Jack” Lesko is a Professor of Engineering Mechanics at VA Tech and currently serving at the Associate Dean for Research & Graduate Studies. Jack is also the co-founder and a Principle at PowerHub Systems, a start up in the Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center.

Through his startup experience with PowerHub, Jack has initiated problem-based learning pilot programs engaging in engineering education and entrepreneurial training. Jack currently assists in the leadership of the DC/MD/VA NSF I-Corps Regional Node, which brings together Virginia Tech, and 2 other major Universities to deliver Lean LauchPad training. The 7 week Customer Development and Product Market fit program prepare scientists and engineers to extend their focus beyond the laboratory and broadens the impact of federally funded research.

Dr. Thomas Lachowicz

During the past 25 years, Dr. Tom Lachowicz has had a highly successful combined career in business and higher education. He has served as CEO, partner, senior manager, department head, college instructor, sales and marketing executive, education consultant, industrial trainer and independent contractor-consultant in a wide variety of manufacturing, health care, and construction industries throughout the USA. He has served in various positions in public and private institutions of higher education, located in the SW region of VA.

Dr. Tom served as a former CEO of Materials Handling Company of VA, and currently as a Partner in the L&H Company (property management company). Dr. Tom has been a most active entrepreneur throughout his professional career. He has created, managed and sold several business enterprises serving the coal mining industry in SW VA, West Virginia, and Kentucky during his distinguished career.

Jeff Howard

Jeff Howard is currently launching his second startup venture – an ARCpoint Labs drug, alcohol, DNA and wellness testing franchisee for the Roanoke and New River Valleys market. The lab is his second start up venture, having launched a New Holland tractor and equipment business in 1996.

Jeff has a B.S. in Agribusiness from The Ohio State University and an M.B.A. from Virginia Tech. He has spent most of his career in corporate sales and marketing positions with Ford New Holland, Novozymes Biologicals, and Automatic Data Processing Dealer Services Division.

Jeff is a board member for Pathfinders for Greenways, an Ambassador for the Roanoke Regional Chamber of Commerce, and holds memberships in the Roanoke Valley Society for Human Resource Management, Salem-Roanoke County Chamber of Commerce, VT Knowledgeworks President’s Council and the Tree Stewards program for the City of Roanoke.

In his free time, Jeff enjoys fitness activities, running, snow skiing and mountain biking. He is engaged to Katie Elmore and they have three children.

He can be reached at, or via phone at 540.200.5087.

Cole Dudley

Owner, IEC Corporation

Cole is a serial entrepreneur and venture capitalist. During 10 years as a venture capitalist he invested in pre-seed, seed and early stage companies in a broad range of technologies. He co-founded and served as CEO of Inhibitex through the seed stage. Inhibitex was later listed on NASDAQ.

Other experience includes founding a consulting firm that provided due diligence services to large private equity firms and advising on venture investments and business plans at Battelle. Most recently Cole was COO and part owner of a small manufacturing company. In August, he gave up his day to day responsibilities to move his family to Blacksburg for the great quality of life.

His formal education includes a BBA in Finance from Iowa State and an MS in Interdisciplinary Engineering from Texas A&M and as well executive education in biotechnology at Duke and marketing technology at Harvard.

Allan Tsang

Negotiation Coach

As an accredited business advisor, analyst, and executive coach, I have worked with hundreds of companies. These organizations have included IT and Engineering, Bio-Medical and Aerospace, Inc. 500 companies, and Fortune’s "100 Best Companies to Work For".

Born in Hong Kong, raised in Africa, and educated in the United States, my early career took me to Boston, New York, and Atlanta before finally settling in the New River Valley as an entrepreneur and coach.

My passion is in helping companies and executives make better decisions and build stronger agreements. I do that by teaching, training, and coaching negotiations, decision-making, and strategy to leadership, middle management, and front-line team members. The results are improved customer and vendor relations, increased sales, streamlined operations, and maximized profits.

Additionally, it has been an honor and a privilege to be named one of the Top 20 Under 40 by the Blue Ridge Business Journal, Nominated for the NCTC’s “Rising Star” and “NewVa Leadership” Awards, and to be a credentialed/charter member of the “Start with No” Camp Negotiation Institute.

Adrienne Capollupo

Founder/CEO of Sales Force Outsourced

Adrienne Capollupo launched Sales Force Outsourced after working in sales and marketing for a software development company when she realized there must be a better way to generate leads and focus more time on closing new business. With an entrepreneurial drive and the desire to help companies find new business faster, she launched the new venture. Now, she and her team work with clients across multiple industry verticals to connect them with influencers, decision makers and customers. They handle all stages of the sales process including strategy development, lead qualification, trade show booth management, social selling and expansion of opportunities through collaboration and partnership development.

Outside of her work with Sales Force Outsourced, Adrienne enjoys networking, coaching, sailing and spending time with her husband and two young daughters.

Tier 4 Sponsors
Derick Maggard
Robert McAden
Jamie Ellis
Brian Gibson
Samantha Steidle
Samuel Toriel
Brian Hazzard

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