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Get Started San Diego

  • Port Pavillion on Broadway Pier 1000 North Harbor Drive San Diego, CA, 92101 United States (map)

Startups Pitch to Win $25,000 In Cash and Tech Solutions

The Get Started SD Moderator

Tim Washer
Creative Director at Cisco, Recognized Stand-up Comedian and Keynote Speaker

Tim studied improv under Amy Poehler, comedy writing with Tom Purcell, executive producer of The Colbert Report, and has appeared on SNL, Conan O’Brien, Onion Sports Network, and HBO’s Last Week Tonight with John Oliver. He’s emceed events featuring Pixar CEO John Lasseter, Emmy-Winner Tony Hale (VEEP, Arrested Development) and Nobel Peace Prize winner Desmond Tutu.

Tim has performed at corporate events for IBM, Cisco, Deloitte, CDC, Google and The White House. His award-winning corporate work has been featured in The New York Times, WSJ, Ad Age, ADWEEK, and Fast Company. He has presented at Content Marketing World Sydney, SXSW and Forrester’s CMO Council. He holds an MBA from McCombs at UT Austin, where he majored in PowerPoint.

The Get Started SD Judging Panel

Brett Munster
Senior Associate, Sway Ventures

As Senior Associate at Sway Ventures, Brett Munster’s responsibilities include evaluating investment opportunities, coordinating the investment and due diligence process and managing the growth of existing portfolio companies.

Brett’s experience as a two-time entrepreneur and former operations executive has given him deep operational experience in early stage and growth phase companies. Prior to joining Sway Ventures, Brett ran day-to-day operations for AMO, a loss mitigation company, where he oversaw a portfolio of distressed assets that grew to $2.25 billion. Brett began his career at, a sports social networking website that he launched during his final semester at UC Berkeley and sold in 2009. Soon after, Brett launched his second start-up Visual Icon, an online platform aimed at streamlining the film clip licensing process.

Brett graduated from the Haas School of Business at UC Berkeley and was an infielder and captain of the baseball team. He also holds an MBA from the University of Southern California where his focus was on entrepreneurship and technology commercialization.

Mike Young
Chief Technology Officer, Classy

Mike is the CTO of Classy, a social enterprise that creates world-class online fundraising tools for nonprofits, modernizing the giving experience to accelerate global social impact. Since 2011, fundraising on the Classy platform has doubled each year—resulting in thousands of nonprofits collectively raising over half a billion dollars. Classy partners with organizations of all sizes, from the fastest-growing non-profits such as Team Rubicon and Malala Fund, to some of the world’s largest social organizations, such as Acumen Fund, Oxfam, and Shriners Hospitals for Children. Based in San Diego, CA, Classy has raised $53 million to-date in growth capital and is backed by prominent technology investors including JMI Equity, Mithril, Salesforce Ventures, and Bullpen Capital.

Previously, Mike was the CTO at Redfin in Seattle, cofounded San Diego-based startup Yapert, and was Chief Architect at Plumtree Software in SF. Mike has worked with prominent investors from Sequoia Capital, Greylock Partners, Draper Fisher Jurvetson, and more. Mike graduated from UC Berkeley with an EECS degree.


Al Bsharah
Vice President, Data & Analytics, Seismic

Al made his first “life-pivot” in 1998 when he moved from the Detroit auto industry (electrical engineer + developer) to being the 2nd employee and equity owner at a San Diego startup which was later acquired. He’s been involved with startups ever since, and his career has taken him down the business path.

He’s also founded two companies, sold one, raised money from both VCs and angels, and is a graduate of both TechStars and The Founder Institute. He was most recently the CEO of Email Copilot which was acquired by Return Path, and is now the VP of Data and Analytics at Seismic.

He’s got a loving wife, a son, a dog, a beach volleyball addiction, and a startup that keep him (in)sane!

Ken Kraft
Senior Vice President of Marketing & Sales Operations for Cox Business

Ken is the head of Cox Communications’ $2 billion business division that provides video, voice and data telecommunications services to businesses.   He is responsible for the overall marketing strategy, as well as tactical execution of marketing plans to drive revenue growth and customer retention and oversees SMB Marketing, Enterprise Marketing, Marketing Operations, Pricing, Sales Operations and Creative Services for Cox Business.  This includes customer segmentation, brand strategy/positioning, product marketing and support, pricing, digital marketing, social media, customer education and events/sponsorships.

He leads a nationwide team tasked with the creation and implementation of marketing strategies and campaigns to further accelerate top line revenue growth and customer retention within Cox Business. His leadership in the industry was recognized this year with a TAMI Award for Leadership in Business Services across the MSO community.

Kirsten Mangers
Managing Director, ChickLabs

Inc. 500, Red Herring Technology 100, TechAmerica, and Deloitte’s Fast 50 have recognized Kirsten’s companies. Kirsten was a finalist for Ernst & Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year and named Female Technology Leader of the Year by TechAmerica and American Women in Technology.

A serial entrepreneur, Ms. Mangers is the Managing Director of Chicklabs, an incubator & consulting practice for entrepreneurs. The Lab specializes in early to later stage growth companies in the sectors of SaaS, adTech, Edutech, Consumer Product Goods, Life Sciences & Med Device.

Kirsten is a Board Director for Chapman University’s Leatherby School for Ethics & Entrepreneurship and Chair Emeritus of the Board for the Alzheimer’s Association of Orange County. She also serves on the Executive Committee of TiE South Coast and is a Director on several private company Boards. She has been frequently recognized by the media as among a prestigious list of “women innovating technology”. She was recognized by OC Metro Magazine as “20 Women to Watch,” received the Pearl Award for Female Entrepreneur of the Year by the US Global Entrepreneur’s Association and was named an Entrepreneur of the Year by the British American Business Council.

Additional Details:

Earlier Event: September 16
Hera Venture Summit
Later Event: October 5
Quick Pitch 2017