2016 Startup Hackathon

Congratulations to the 2016 Startup Hackathon Monterey Bay Winners 1st Place: Traveling Otters 2nd Place: Null Constructor 3rd Place: Hashmap-All-Day (tie) 3rd Place: Git Committed (tie)  

Introductory Workshop

Learn about the Startup Challenge and prepare your application.

Carmel Honey Company

Carmel, CA. (July 21, 2017) — Members of the Reisdorf family of Carmel are industrious as a colony of honey bees these days as they prepare to open Carmel Honey Company’s first brick-and-mortar store at the Carmel Plaza in downtown Carmel. Carmel Honey Company was founded by Jake Reisdorf, now 14, as a school project that took off. He not only founded the company, but is a passionate advocate for saving bee populations. He is a knowledgeable speaker who regularly gives talks, demonstrations and workshops to schools, civic groups, companies and nonprofits on the importance of bees. “We’re super excited to be in the Plaza, it’s a great location. They’re remodeling the whole courtyard, it’s becoming a foodie paradise.” says Jake Reisdorf, the leader of this honey-passionate family, about the store which is on the lower level of the Plaza. Dad Jeff is a general contractor and he’ll be responsible for the build-out of the space, mom Becky will be the contact for day to day operations, while sister Brooke, 11, will take on window and store display and will also assist in choosing the various hive related products.

The Carmel Honey Company store will be an upscale honey store, stocked with honey and hive-related merchandise, including apparel, unique gifts, bath & body items and specialty edibles.
And of course, Jake is still a student, so there is an educational component to the store. Since most people haven’t tasted real, raw, premium honey guests will be able to sample honeys from all over the country, discover beekeeping practices from around the world, and learn about the importance of pollinators to the eco system and the human race. Jake and his family plan to travel and bring the best honey in world back to Carmel By-the-Sea. They already have a sample program from the East Coast ready and will be traveling to Istanbul this fall.

“There are a lot of different kinds of honey with different flavor profiles,” says Jake. “In Europe, for example, the honey is more savory than here. It’s fun to see people’s faces light up when they taste the quality of my honey and it’s cool to answer questions about honey bees. Some of the kids actually ask some tough ones.” So why did the family decide to open a brick-and-mortar store for their honey products? “It was from overwhelming demand,” says Jake. “People kept asking us where our store was located. They wanted to learn more about bees and sample our honey. We feel lucky to be in this location.” The Reisdorfs say this store goes along with Jake’s original slogan he came up with when he was just 11 years old. “His slogan was ‘Carmel Honey Company, Bringing You the Best Honey in the World,’ ” says Becky. “And it’s actually coming true. It’s quite exciting.”

Carmel Honey Company store
Carmel Plaza, Suite 118,
Ocean Avenue & Mission Street
Carmel, CA 93921
Phone: 831.687.8511
Hours: Mon-Sat 10am to 6pm, Sun 11am to 5pm

About Jake and Carmel Honey Company:
Jake Reisdorf is the chief beekeeper and owner of Carmel Honey Company. He started his business as part of a school project where his teacher assigned professions to each student and directed them to research the profession and build a presentation on it. While researching his assigned profession of website designer, Jake, 11 years old at the time, decided to take it one step further and actually create a real website. At that time, Jake had taken one beekeeping class with his Dad and thought it would be cool to design a website about honey bees. Not only did Jake get an “A” on the project, it inspired him and spurred him to start Carmel Honey Company. That was three years ago. His passion for honey bees grew as he learned about Colony Collapse Disorder and real honey. Expanding his research and education drove Jake to learn more about honey and bees and ultimately decide it was critical to give back. The “Jake Gives Back” program includes sharing honey bee knowledge with kids and adults of all ages. Whether he is in a classroom speaking to first-grade students, or at a corporate event talking with business owners and seasoned professionals, his passion and appreciation of how honey bees impact our world is infectious. He also “gives back” by making a financial donation to honey bee research and education organizations.

Greater Vision Water Forum

Visions, Visionaries, and Innovations

A one-day forum addressing innovative water management strategies for the Central Coast. Over 30 speakers, including researchers, policy makers, and industry innovators from around the world will discuss ideas, policies, and technologies to advance sustainable water management for an adequate water supply for the residential, agricultural, and industrial needs of our region.

The forum will take place on October 6th, 2017 at the Embassy Suites Hotel at 1441 Canyon Del Rey Blvd in Seaside, CA.

Who Should Attend

  • Agricultural and Industrial Water Leaders and Managers
  • Government Officials and Policy Makers
  • Trade associations and development organizations
  • Educational Leaders, Researchers, Faculty, and Students
  • Water Researchers from Public and Private Institutions
  • Water Industry Entrepreneurs, Investors, and Developers
  • Anyone interested in this issue

Goals of the Forum

  • Examine strategies and policies
  • Engage discussion on practical solutions
  • Encourage research and investment

Open Ground Studios’ “Art Oasis” at the 16th Annual West End Celebration

WHEN: August 26th & 27th, 2017

ABOUT THE EVENT: Open Ground Studios will hit the streets of Sand City for the fifth consecutive year during the 16th Annual West End Celebration. OGS’s Art Oasis will be a combination gallery and outdoor arts hub featuring works by our co-op artist members and teaching artists! In addition to fine art prints, paintings and drawings for sale, we’ll have unique, hand-printed T-shirts and bags and fabric paint so people can add their own embellishments. We’ll also be providing Artist Trading Cards for locals to make, swap and share.

NEW THIS YEAR: Three Featured Artists will be on site working on their art and sharing their process, passions and stories with the larger community.


11:00 – 2:30

Paul Richmond is an internationally recognized figure painter and arts activist. During the festival he will be working on his latest piece featuring transgender military veterans to promote his upcoming exhibition at Open Ground Studios entitled, Face to Face. On Saturday, Paul will launch PiecedTogether, a community art project inviting all ages to contribute to a wall mural installation that will be unveiled during his exhibition in September.

3:00 – 6:00

Alyssa Endo is an exquisite and detailed large-scale reduction woodcut artist who will be on-site carving the last layer of her 10th piece in The Beauty Series, a thirteen-piece exploration of Geisha culture, identity and traditional Japanese imagery.


1:00 – 4:30

Renata Abma is a local architect who grew up in Brazil where color, texture and the environment became integral to how she sees the world. She works in oils, pastels and printmaking and will be on-site to share her journey back into art-making while working on an oil painting.

ABOUT THE STUDIO: Award winning Open Ground Studios is a fine art school, cooperative visual art studio and coworking space that provides dedicated, inspiring and sustainable workspace for artists, creative adults, professionals and teens. OGS is an affordable and accessible shared facility offering 24/7 access to co-op and coworking members. OGS promotes community entrée into creative productivity by hosting workshops, open studio time, classes, social events, and exhibition space.

For More Information:

Denese Sanders, OGS Artistic Director

Tel: 831-241-6919 | Cell: 861-236-8636

Email: info@opengroundstudios.com

Website: opengroundstudios.com

Instagram: @opengroundstudios

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/opengroundstudio

Paul Richmond: https://paulrichmondstudio.com/

Alyssa Endo: https://alyssaendo.com/

Renata Abma: rca-art.com

Startup Hackathon Monterey Bay 2017


Features: TBD

The theme for this year’s Startup Hackathon will be set soon.  Save the date!

Free for CSUMB students, other students $49, General $99

Startup Weekend Monterey Bay 2018

Launch your business idea over the weekend!

At Startup Weekend Monterey Bay, you’ll be immersed in the ideal environment for startup magic to happen. Aspiring entrepreneurs will work together to build startups in one chaotic weekend. The ultimate hands-on learning experience, SWMB allows innovators from all disciplines team up for an intensive experience in building businesses.

Connect with people driven to build something new. Rich and diverse talent is a Startup Weekend staple. Are you ready to meet your next (cofounder) (friend) (mentor) (investor)?

Discover where you are on the Entrepreneur’s Journey. Find the resources available near you.Leave knowing the next steps you need to take on your road to success.

Learn what it really takes to start a company. No book, panel, speaker, or blog post will teach you what you need to know. The only way to learn is the experience of trying.It’s that simple. Startup Weekend is designed to get you going, FAST.

Cal State University Monterey Bay is proud to host Startup Weekend for the Monterey Bay region each January. This is the fifth year we have bought this global event to the Monterey Bay region.  Startup Weekend is part of the largest entrepreneurial community with over 193,00 past attendees a global grassroots movement of active and empowered entrepreneurs in over 150 countries who are learning the basics of founding startups and launching successful ventures.

Early bird tickets are available until January 15, 2018, so sign up now and save!



Startup Challenge

Startup Challenge Monterey Bay

Startup Challenge Monterey Bay is a regional new business competition and acceleration program for entrepreneurs in Monterey, San Benito and Santa Cruz counties.  The Challenge is held annually, organized by a team of community volunteers and hosted by the Institute for Innovation and Economic Development of CSU, Monterey Bay. It is a competitive acceleration process that teaches, coaches, mentors, networks, and connects entrepreneurs to the knowledge and resources they need. Prospective entrepreneurs, start-ups and emerging companies showcase and develop their business concepts while competing for prizes. The Challenge provides workshops and mentoring to support the founding, funding and growth of new and innovative businesses in the Monterey Bay region. The Challenge empowers entrepreneurs to communicate their ideas effectively to investors, customers and employees.

Already registered? Sign in to edit.

Schoolze App Revolutionizing How Parents Engage with their Kids’ Education.

  Aug 24, 2017

Originally published on Monterey County Weekly.

Growing up in India, Avneesh Kumar saw firsthand how a lack of parental engagement could affect a student’s success. His father was a teacher and his sister was a principal, and he’d often listen to their workday grievances. He eventually went into IT as a career, but Kumar was reacquainted with the issues when he became a father and his son enrolled in preschool.

He saw teachers scramble to send out parent newsletters and observed how late he’d receive first-day-of-school notifications. With a bit of research, he saw the U.S. Department of Education was mulling over parent engagement as well, ranking it as one of the top three problems schools face. It was a problem he thought was solvable.

The Pacific Grove man created an app called Schoolze (pronounced “school-zee”) in 2015. At first, it was a platform for teachers to disseminate newsletters to parents. It’s evolved and can now help raise money for schools. “Schoolze looks nothing like it did when we launched it,” Kumar says. He spoke with the Weekly about how the app transformed.

Weekly: How does the app raise money for schools?

Kumar: There are multiple ways to raise money. When it comes time to make a yearbook, parents can now upload quality photos for a yearbook. Schools can also use Schoolze to sell yearbooks. This helps to monetize the feature.

[Schoolze] also helps raise funds for [parent teacher associations]. It digitizes traditional ways of fundraising. If you have a donation fundraiser, you can track the progress to the goal like on similar crowd-funding platforms like GoFundMe.

How many schools are using Schoolze?

Eighty-plus schools in 16 states, with usage from Canada and the UK [too]. We’re trying to focus primarily in U.S.

Right now, we’re not focusing on growing the company, but focusing on the product. That means gathering results and data, mapping it and measuring, so that schools can track how successful their school is.

How do schools usually track success?

Most schools can only go off of grades, test scores or graduation rates. But success is so much more than that; you have to contextualize those measurements too. How do you measure the environment a child is in? Or the community they’re embedded in? Those are harder questions and harder to measure.

Nobody has been able to put a number on family engagement, so we’re starting there and we think that’s another way of tracking progress.

It looks like this app can do a lot of good for schools in high-need communities. Have you tried reaching out to any of those schools?

Yes, we’ve worked with some summer schools in Salinas and the East Coast where students come from less affluent neighborhoods. Socio-economic issues are directly correlated with how involved parents are in their students’ lives. For many of these families, they’re just trying to survive.

We also found out that these schools have about 20 percent of positive parent engagement; the rest of the 80 percent are disengaged.

That 20 percent is all that’s needed to start a specific campaign to help the 80 percent. For, example, get an iPad for every family, so that families can have some sort of computer in the household. You only need to mobilize a little to get a big impact. It’s about creating a bridge.

How do you engage parents who don’t speak English? That’s a gap that needs to bridged in Monterey County.

When we make new features, we make them as inclusive as possible. Say a teacher sends out a newsletter in English. There’s a feature that translates it into different languages. Say I have a student that comes up to me and says, “Hey, my mom speaks Spanish but she can’t read.” We created a feature that translates text into audio in different languages. It’s important that everything we add expands on parent involvement.

Are you an involved parent?

In the beginning, I wasn’t too involved. I’d say my wife is still more involved with our son. But the more I develop Schoolze, the more I have a sight of his and the teachers’ worlds. I see his education and growth from all sides, and this project definitely helped with that.

Visit the Schoolze Website!

Keiretsu Forum to Present at First Annual Monterey Startup Investment Expo in October

Originally published on Santa Cruz Tech Beat



September 13, 2017 — Monterey, CA


Keiretsu Forum, a world-wide angel investment group, will present at the Monterey Startup Investment Expo in October 26, 2017

Keiretsu Forum, with almost 3,000 members in 52 chapters world wide, will be one of the angel investment groups bringing a local company to present at the first annual Startup Investment Expo this fall.

Judith Iglehart, International Vice President of Keiretsu Forum will be the luncheon speaker, and will discuss how she has worked with communities all around the world to help them kick start their local economies by building their angel investment ecosystems. Along with her, Monterey Bay area Keiretsu Forum portfolio company LinqTo will be prese

nting details of its current investment round and growth in the fin-tech area. Also supporting the effort is Fred Cohen, the Pebble Beach chapter President, who will be acting as the moderator for presentations and panels.

There are a number of events happening to boost the local economy, and one of them is the Monterey Bay Startup Investment Expo. The Expo is an opportunity to learn more about the regional startup ecosystem. This is drawing Keiretsu Forum members from the San Francisco and Oakland areas as well as other angel investors and groups to the region, with the potential to fund startups and engage in community building across the tri-county region. The Expo is on October 26 from 8AM to 4PM, and is cosponsored by The MPCC and Management Analytics, a local company. The Expo will include representatives from local and regional funds, startups, incubators, accelerators, municipalities, law offices, Universities and colleges, financial institutions, and other organizations and institutions involved in funding and supporting startups.

For more information about the expo or the local Keiretsu Forum chapter and its activities, contact MS@k4pb.com or visit http://fc0.co/k4pb.com/.