About Startup UCLA

Advisory Board

Barry Eggers
Lightspeed Venture Partners
Brian Lee
CEO & Co-Founder at The Honest Company
Dr. Michael J. Burry
UCLA alumni and CEO, Scion Capital Group. Our earliest outside donor!
Josh Neumann
Pacific Capital
Richard Wolpert
Co-Founder, Amplify.LA, Venture Advisor, Accel Partners
T. Hale Boggs
Manatt, Phelps & Phillips

Steering Committee

Andy Atkeson
Professor of Economics
Bea Richman
Director of Development, Undergraduate Education
Brendan Rauw
Associate Vice Chancellor for Entrepreneurship
Charles Corbett
Professor, Anderson School of Management
Dwight Streit
Director, Institute of Technology Advancement
Elaine K. Hagan
Executive Director, Harold and Pauline Price Center for Entrepreneurial Studies
Jim Stigler
(Chair & Co-Founder) Professor of Psychology and Associate Dean, Division of Social Sciences
Louis Gomez
Professor of Education
Robert Jadon
Entrepreneur and Investor, Director of Startup UCLA Accelerator
Tim Groeling
(Co-Founder) Professor and Chair, Department of Communication Studies
William Ouchi
Distinguished Professor, Sanford and Betty Sigoloff Chair in Corporate Renewal, Distinguished Professor of Management and Organization


Aaron Hirschhorn
Founder/CEO, Dog Vacay
Alex Capecelatro
Founder of At The Pool
Alex Karelin
Founder & CEO - TulaCo
Alex Quilici
CEO, YouMail
Bob Holmen
Managing Director at Miramar Venture Partners
Brent Bushnell
CEO at Two Bit Circus, Inc.
Brian Kelly
Partner at Manatt, Phelps & Phillips LLP
Brian Lee
CEO & Co-Founder at The Honest Company
Diego Berdakin
President at BeachMint
Eric Jaffe
Founder and COO, ChowNow
Eric Wu
Vice President of SEO at Buzz Media
Eva Ho
VP Marketing & Operation, Factual
Evan Strauss
Angel Investor
Gary Baker
Product Development Executive, Griddeo (ClipBlast Inc.)
George Ishii
Product Designer
Hans Yang
General Manager at Zynga
Howard Marks
Co-chair at Start Engine
Jack Tsai
Technology Entrepreneur, Investor
Janet Zhou
Director of Product at BeachMint
Jarl Mohn
Angel Investor
Jeff Lapin
Angel Investor
Jim Armstrong
Managing Director at Clearstone Venture Partners
John Shiple
CEO at FreelanceCTO
Jon Funk
Ocean Road Partners
Julia Lam
Co-founder & CEO at Optimistic Labs
Kara Nortman
SVP Consumer Businesses- Urbanspoon, Citysearch, Insider Pages
Kelly Perdew
Co-Founder & CEO, TargetClose, Angel Investor
Lane Halley
Product Designer at Carbon Five
Larisa Hall
Senior Director, Sales Channels, Secondary Markets at Best Buy
Lee Weinberg
Manager, Dauntless Fund, Partner, Weinberg-Gonser LLP
Matt Gray
Vice President, Loyalty & Gaming at American Express
Michael Green
President, Tech Coast Angels, Los Angeles
Michael Greenberg
CEO, Scale Software
Michael Howse
Entrepreneur, Executive and Board Member
Mike Horowitz
SVP, Product Management at Live Nation / Ticketmaster
Mike Jones
CEO Science, Former CEO of MySpace
Mike Wynholds
Owner and CEO, Carbon Five, Inc.
Mitra Best
U.S. Innovation Leader at PricewaterhouseCoopers
Paige Craig
Angel Investor
Peter Cowen
Early Stage Investor
Richard Wolpert
Co-Founder, Amplify.LA, Venture Advisor, Accel Partners
Rocky Gunderson
Principal at SierraRock
Royce Disini
Founder at zabbi
Sam Teller
Managing Director of Launchpad LA
Sarah Fergusson
Associate at Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP
Susan Wilhite
UX Research Professional
Tami Reiss
Product Marketing Manager at CityGrid Media
Terry Kramer
Ambassador, Head of U.S. Delegation, World Conference on International Telecommunications at U.S. Department of State
Tom McInerney
Angel Investor
Tony Karrer
Outsourced CTO, Helping startups with Web/ Mobile/ Software/ Data Development, Founder and CTO Aggregage - B2B Marketing


Deanna Evans
Executive Director, Entrepreneurial Programs

Robert Jadon
Director, Startup UCLA's Summer Accelerator
Entrepreneur, Investor

Jaime Balboa
Assistant Vice Provost for Summer Sessions, Communications, and External Partnerships

Keith Gibson
Assistant Director

Jerry Ciolino
Program & Marketing Coordinator

Matthew Austin
Community Outreach Associate & Venture Consultant

Shelby Kretz
Community Outreach Associate & Non-Profit Venture Consultant

Avriel Epps
Community Outreach Associate & Venture Consultant


Startup UCLA was established in 2012 with the first Summer Accelerator for UCLA students/alumni to develop their tech-startups during a ten-week highly intensive program. The Summer Accelerator provides early-stage startups with a workspace and guidance by top entrepreneurs, investors and skill experts. The ten-week program incorporates best practices and knowledge in entrepreneurship, technology, and design. The teams travel to the Bay Area to visit venture capital firms and startup entrepreneurs, making valuable connections while getting constructive feedback on their pitches from industry professionals. The culminating event is Demo Day when the teams pitch to our growing network of local entrepreneurs and investors.

So far, Summer Accelerator entrepreneurs have created and attracted funding for innovative startups ranging from mobile applications to educational technology and eCommerce platforms. An added benefit is the collaboration among teams with the Accelerator becoming a testing ground for ideas and approaches across team members.

From the beginning, Startup UCLA sought to develop a culture of startup thinking on campus, to connect students with alumni who are successful in the startup world, to give students opportunities to learn the basics of startup thinking, and to provide a community in which students can develop and launch their early-stage ideas.

It quickly became evident that UCLA students/alumni are passionate about being entrepreneurs by the attendance at on-campus entrepreneurship events, the growing number of Summer Accelerator applications each year, and the creation of student groups such as Bruin Entrepreneurs.

Being awarded the three-year Blackstone LaunchPad grant with UCI, USC, and LAEDC was seen as an opportunity for UCLA to bring in a high-quality structured program that directly strengthens current opportunities and would add to the entrepreneurial resources offered to UCLA students/alumni by Startup UCLA.

The Blackstone LaunchPad introduces entrepreneurship as a viable career option with focus on students who are earlier in the entrepreneurial education process. Through venture consultant meetings, mentoring, workshops, and events, the Blackstone LaunchPad helps students use their education to start new businesses, find viable careers in entrepreneurship, and create jobs.

Through the Blackstone LaunchPad at UCLA and the Summer Accelerator, Startup UCLA provides a community in which students/alumni can develop and launch their ideas.

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