1M Ideas: Entrepreneurs & Communities Collaborate
Austin has created a reputation as a national hotbed for start-ups, entrepreneurs and innovation. This session will explore the elements that contribute to the creation of a community like Austin and how can entrepreneurs take advantage of these to develop their ideas into companies on the fast track to succeed.
“Veteran” Austin-based entrepreneurs Whurley and Chelsea McCullough will host a friendly discussion on these topics from two diverse perspectives. Over their combined 25 years in Austin, they have participated in the Austin evolution, having both advised, worked for, and created their own start-ups.
Texans for Economic Progress
Chelsea’s work bridges the interrelated areas of entrepreneurship, social good, technology and communications. She specializes in combining talented people with market forces to create and activate powerful ideas.
Chelsea serves as Executive Director at Texans for Economic Progress (TEP), a statewide technology coalition that informs, educates and connects the technology community. She created a consulting company, Intercambio, to connect companies to opportunity and has participated in the launch of several entrepreneurial companies including FrameBuzz, a platform for curating and sharing video, NewsTaco, an online news site for Latinos; FlashValet, a mobile/web application that combines convenience with valet parking; MasWired, an online news site for Latinos in technology and Vidamerica, an innovative retail company that delivers community-based services.
Prior to founding Intercambio, she served as Marketing Director for MPOWER Labs, a global business accelerator dedicated to financial empowerment for the underserved, where she led marketing strategy and execution for the company’s North America efforts, Mango and GoalMine. While at MPOWER, she also served as founding Program Director for RISE – an annual conference series dedicated to connecting and inspiring entrepreneurs.
Prior to MPOWER, she held senior marketing positions with the Texas Lottery and the Office of the Governor (Texas) where she participated in the launch of TexasOne, the creation Wide Open for Business brand and the development of the Texas Enterprise Fund. In 1999, she co-founded Vento Marketing Organization, an advertising agency in Las Vegas, Nevada.
She is active in the community and is currently serving as an Advisor for the Impact Texas, a conference on mission-focused investing, and is also a Board Member for DiscoverHope, an international nonprofit that provides microcredit and business training for women in poverty. She is a graduate of the 2010 Essentials Class of LeadershipAustin and is a LeadershipAustin Emerge Committee member. She has also served on the UT Food Lab Committee, LifeWorks (LEAP) Steering Committee, SetonCove Board and was a founding member of the Japan-America Society of Greater Austin (JASGA). In 2013, Chelsea received the BPE Ascendant Award, was named a Profiles in Power Finalist and an Austin Under 40 Finalist.
Chelsea has masters and bachelor degrees in Advertising from the University of Texas at Austin.
Systems theorist, IBM Master Inventor, and proud poppa to 11 patents, William “Whurley” Hurley is a futurist’s worst nightmare. Yes, he’s one of the leading authorities on open source, open innovation and augmented reality, but it’s not his numerous awards or acclaimed speaking engagements that make him such a threat.
Whurley is driving the “Vaporware to Makerware” movement that’s on track to destroy old presentation standards and ignite a “future is now” philosophy. While GM of Chaotic Moon Labs, he created The Smarter Cart (TM), shopping cart of the future and the "Board of Imagination", a mind-controlled skateboard deemed “something out of a science fiction movie.” When he’s not speaking internationally, or being interviewed by Wired, he’s busy unlocking the potential of the world's top brands to meet the demands of the next generation.