San Diego Startup

Convergence Mentors



Mentor hours will run during Convergence, Wednesday Feb 27th 2019






Larry Heminger is a senior technology leader, with a track record for enabling rapid and successful growth of multiple start-ups, businesses and programs. Larry has significant experience across diverse industries and businesses including Healthcare Technology, IoT, and Imaging, Automated Retail (kiosks), eCommerce, and Defense/Aerospace. Currently Chief Technology Officer for Sapiens Data Science, where we’re building an AI-enabled technology platform to improve and protect your health at the speed of science. Previously VP of Technology at ecoATM Gazelle, where we built and scaled a network of over 3,300 automated trade-in kiosks combined with a world class eCommerce platform for buying and selling used cell phones at Gazelle.com. EcoATM is one of San Diego’s tech success stories with a successful exit to Outerwall (Coinstar) in 2013. Also directed software engineering and operations at CardioNow, resulting in a successful acquisition by Agfa Healthcare in 2009.





Kim started her 3rd company, Trials.ai after her best friend was diagnosed with terminal cancer. What began as a passion project has turned into a mission-driven, venture-backed startup that is turning the clinical trials ecosystem on its head. Her previous experience building a company that focused on process improvement and organizational development at large pharma companies like Merck, Pfizer and Genentech have given her a unique advantage and understanding of the things that drive them. Kim is on a mission to leverage artificial intelligence in technology to help research organizations optimize clinical trials for speed and success – because patients don’t have time to wait. Kim is a wife, mom, wake-surf lover, entrepreneur and ENTJ. Fun fact: she has also made a citizen’s arrest!





For the past 20 years, I’ve worked on deals and legal issues for companies of all sizes—from start ups to multi-­nationals. I’m well versed in the tech space, from software, med-­tech and “big data” to social media and IoT. I know what it takes to execute structures and agreements to foster fast growth. After all, tech is about more than jeans and sneakers, it’s about being creative and finding ways to close deals that fuel possibilities, not shut them down. I’ve had my own practice since 2007, working with companies like Google, AppNexus, Salesforce and Uber. Before that, I was a senior member of the Yahoo! legal team, negotiating many of the company’s technology deals and partner alliances. I’ve been the chief legal counsel for start-­ups like Krux Digital (acquired by Salesforce), an attorney at Commerce One (back in the day), and have supported multi-­national transactions with the likes of Eurostar, Red Bull, Major League Baseball, NASDAQ, Goldman Sachs, Liveramp, Amazon and NASCAR.





Lucy was named Fast Company’s Most Creative Business Person and mentors female founders to think big! Lucy is a former actuary who grew to love customers more than numbers during her years working at Zynga and Intuit in Silicon Valley. She experienced her entrepreneurial epiphany one day while she was shoe shopping and realized she could customize her coffee order more easily than finding shoes that fit. Feetz was born in 2013 in San Diego – making custom fit shoes using your smartphone and a 3d printer – and raised $10M of funding including Khosla Ventures and DSW Retailer before exit in 2018. 





Fergie is a senior technology leader, software engineer, data engineer, system architect and as needed a product manager with a track record of building successful teams and products across industries. Fergie has been able to leverage his hands on technical skills, engineering management experience and business savvy to build teams from start-up mode as well as transform existing teams into accountable high performance operations. Currently the CTO and a key technology contributor at Zeeto, Fergie led the development of the company’s SaaS ad network platform with an event based design leveraging micro-services to provide ad recommendations determined with machine learning real-time to web publishers across the internet. Zeeto was also an opportunity implement lean process that has resulted in improved quality, employee satisfaction, improved retention and lower company risk. For his efforts as well as mentoring other CTOs, in 2018 Fergie was recognized by his 100 peers in the international 7CTO’s organization as CTO of the year.





Payal is a founder and owner of North County CPA, an accounting practice that provides accounting, bookkeeping, tax and controller services to small businesses. Payal is an enrolled agent and a licensed CPA with more than a decade of experience in accounting. She is particularly interested in helping new businesses with the initial set up of their business including helping them choose the right type of entity structure from tax point of view, filing tax related paperwork, setting up their chart of accounts, tax planning and filing tax returns.





Austin is the Director of Product at Rev, Co-Founder of Startup San Diego, has founded a few startups, and worked in venture capital. He advises several early-stage startups and tries to help make San Diego a better place to start a company. Austin learned primarily from making mistakes, but formally at MIT, Wharton, and Y Combinator.





Neal Bloom is a serial entrepreneur, startup ecosystem organizer, and angel investor. Neal is passionate about building a strong San Diego business community, especially in tech-enabled businesses. He helped San Diego Startup Week build itself into a non-profit that helps startups launch and entrepreneurs enrich themselves and their employees to build a great business. He currently sits as chairman of Startup San Diego, is on the board of San Diego Venture Group, and runs the popular local blog Fresh Brewed Tech.





Ashley is the owner of ENVI Marketing, a social media marketing agency that specializes in connecting small business owners with their target audience. Since ENVI Marketing’s inception in January 2017, Ashley has provided her clients with impeccable social media management, content creation, and campaign strategy – while maintaining unparalleled client support. If you have any questions about how social media can benefit your startup or small business, Ashley would love to help.





Steve Morley has been a serial entrepreneur for more than 40 years and has founded, advised to, or consulted with more than 20 startups since then, the most successful of which was Qualcomm where he was employee #10. He has worked for industry luminaries including Paul Allen and with George Lucas in a variety of product and business launches. He started his career as an electrical engineer with a Master’s degree from Stanford and holds more than 25 patents in wireless communication systems and video processing. He has been an angel investor for several companies and is a member of three venture capital funds. He currently works with The Brink Innovation Center providing free, personalized business advisement and mentoring to more than 50 startup companies. He also volunteers with the local TiE chapter – the world’s largest non-profit entrepreneurial support organization – to connect entrepreneurs in San Diego with investors and resources to help them build their success.





During my senior year of college, along with two classmates, I started my company Whooo’s Reading. 6 years, 4 rounds of fundraising, and 3 pivots later, we are still working towards making a big impact in our industry (education technology). If you’re looking to raise money, improve with marketing or sales, find product-market fit, hire, find advisors, or experiment with your growth strategy, then I would love to share my advice based on what I’ve learned building my company.





James is a san Diego based CKR Law partner. James has a broad high-tech transactions practice, with experience in law firms and as in-house General Counsel in San Diego and the San Francisco Bay Area. James’ outside General Counsel practice focuses on emerging technology and cannabis-business companies and his clients span many industries from connected car leaders and life sciences and healthcare chatbot pioneers to cannabis entrepreneurs, supply chain and financial services providers. James has helped US start-ups do business on multiple continents and has years of M&A experience. Having spent years representing software and SaaS companies, James has been at the forefront of data privacy and security challenges. James specializes in data privacy and is well versed in GDPR and CCPA privacy regimes. James earned his JD at California Western School of Law in San Diego and his BA in Political Science from the University of California, Santa Barbara.





A recruiting veteran with 20 year’s experience, awarded “Recruiter of the Year” in San Diego for 7 consecutive years and also “Rookie Parent of the Year” (self awarded) for 9 consecutive years, and counting! In 1999, I joined my mom, Amy Moser, as a Technical Recruiter with Tristaff Group. Around 2008, I expanded into other recruiting areas, such as C-Level, Marketing, Sales/Business Development, Finance, and Product Management, in addition to a wide range of technical Engineering roles. In 2018 I married a brilliant Brit, John Breckenridge, and besides my daughter, we look after 3 chickens, a hamster, 2 dogs, and a fish. With my vast network in the industry, to date I’ve placed over 1,100 candidates and produced over $12.2M in placement fees. Helping talented people land a new dream job, seeing them grow and excel and my client companies thrive as a result is a pretty sweet deal.





Chris has spent his career working with Government Technology startups in Salt Lake City, San Francisco and San Diego. As employee #8 At Public Engines in Salt Lake City, UT Chris was instrumental in growing the company from 30 municipal customers to over 2,000 in three years. In that time Public Engines raised $18M in venture capital, was Inc. Magazine’s 297th fastest growing company and was acquired by Motorola. Chris then spent three years consulting in sales and bizdev for venture-backed tech companies in San Francisco. He worked on data-sharing initiatives with organizations including the FBI’s Human Trafficking Task Force, ATF’s National Ballistic Information Network (NBIN), and the Law Enforcement Access Portal (LEAP). In 2014 Chris launched Exposure Tracker to document toxic exposures first responders get on the job. The company raised $1.3M, was twice named a GovTech Top 100 company and was acquired in 2018 by a private equity-backed strategic.





Chris Loryman is a Senior Manager in UC San Diego’s Office of Innovation & Commercialization, and one of the Directors for the San Diego Innovation Council, which he co-founded in 2017. In 2009 he co-founded ThioLogics Ltd, a London-based antibody-drug conjugate company, for which he served as Head of Business Development. In his career he has managed more than eight thousand technologies across four universities, negotiated more than twenty significant deals and licenses, run a 25-country, 500-patient, Phase 3b clinical trial, built a pipeline of therapeutic candidates (including two at Phase 2, and one Phase 1), and secured over $25million in non-dilutive funding.




Brian is a seasoned startup veteran, having spent the last decade founding, consulting, and working at startups. During his career he has had the opportunity to work in a variety of industries including: artificial intelligence, ad-tech, manufacturing, e-commerce, and telecommunications. He is currently the CEO of a company that raised seed funding for their artificial intelligence B2C communication systems. Brian is passionate about connecting people to the resources they need to be successful, and empowering them to perform at their highest level. His current focus at StartupSD is to help turn San Diego into a startup hub that can rival other up-and-comers across the nation.