Mentors

Chicostart Mentors

GET TO KNOW

Our Mentors

Chicostart offers an inclusive business mentoring program to bring together entrepreneurs, startups, small businesses, and mentors from the North State to support their entrepreneurial success. To learn more about the program and connect with a Chicostart mentor, please email eva@chicostart.com.

Andrew,

CEO, MicroAcquire

I’m Andrew Gazdecki and I’ve been an entrepreneur for longer than I can remember. I like to build stuff, mostly companies, and try to tell a story that goes beyond what the company does to how it’s changing markets. I started two companies, Bizness Apps and Altcoin.io, both acquired. I have been featured in

NYT, Forbes, WSJ, Inc.com, and Entrepreneur Magazine, as well as prominent industry blogs such as Mashable, TechCrunch and VentureBeat.

Areas of Expertise

  • Entrepreneurship
  • Leadership
  • Brand building

Jessica Hennman,

Attorney at Law, Jessica Hennman Law

Jessica was born and raised in Chico, California. She graduated from Pleasant Valley High School with Honors. While in school Jessica participated in 4H for 10 years which involved being a leader in many group projects and 9 years of raising lambs. After High School Jessica attended Chico State and graduated with a degree in Business Administration, with an emphasis in Entrepreneurship, and a minor in Spanish. Meanwhile, Jessica has worked alongside her family in all of their family owned and ran businesses which include: Bill Chance Realty, Camp, Storage, and Chance-Knight Farming. Jessica graduated from McGeorge School of Law in the top third of her class with a concentration in Business Law, as well as Tax Law. In her free time, Jessica enjoys reading, traveling (she studied abroad in college and law school in Spain and Austria), riding horses, and being involved in the community. She is involved in Rotary and other community-based programs in Chico, CA. In addition to practicing law, Jessica also helps people buy/sell real estate.


Areas of Expertise

  • Business Law
  • Estate Planning
  • Licensed real estate agent

Eli Libby

Co-Founder & President, Results Imagery

Eli is Co-Founder & President of Results Imagery, a product photography and video production company dedicated to increasing online listing conversions through high quality media content. Before Results Imagery Eli built a successful eCommerce brand called Winterial. He co-founded Results Imagery through a fusion between eCommerce expertise and high quality media content for online retailers. As the president of Results Imagery, he lives and breathes business development, culture building and creating a lasting impact through our corporate sustainability program.

Areas of Expertise

  • Leadership Development
  • Building strong company culture
  • Creating operational efficiencies

Kyle Nelson

Co-Founder & President, Results Imagery

Kyle Nelson is Co-Founder& CEO of Results Imagery, a product photography and video production company dedicated to increasing online listing conversions through high quality media content. Before Results Imagery, he was involved as a founding member in several start-ups including staffing, social media and media production. As an award winning photographer, Kyle leads media strategy for some of the world & top companies collaborating with Results Imagery.

Areas of Expertise

  • Content/Media Production
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Branding

Kris Rudeegraap

CEO, Sendoso

Kris Rudeegraap is the co-founder and CEO of Sendoso, the leading Sending Platform for sending direct mail and corporate gifts. Kris has more than a decade of sales experience and has spent time in sales at Talkdesk, Yapstone, and Piqora. During that time, he discovered that creating meaningful engagements through direct mail and gifting was an effective way to drive demand and increase sales—which helped inspire the idea for Sendoso. Kris is a California native and CSU-Chico alum currently residing in the Bay Area.

Areas of Expertise

  • Fundraising (raised $155m)
  • Scaling sales/marketing revenue ($0-$30m ARR)
  • Hiring/recruiting (0-500+ employees)

Sedale Turbovsky

CEO, Opengrants.io

Sedale has been an entrepreneur since childhood. After high school, he quickly grew bored in college and dropped out. He spent some time honing his leadership

skills as an outdoor guide leading rafting and kayaking expeditions around the world. As an adventure guide with ample downtime to study and learn, he developed the analytical and business skills needed to launch a management consultancy in Argentina focused on delivering enterprise data products to clients. From that role he was recruited to develop, and then serve as the CEO, of carbonBLU, a successful venture-backed startup solving challenges in the clean vehicle and fleet management space. Sedale led the company through MVP and helped secure a pipeline of over $1.5M in government contracts. During that time, he gained intimate knowledge of the challenges and pitfalls of applying for and managing grant funding as a technology startup, which was the impetus for OpenGrants.

Sedale brings with him a history of leading successful teams, experience with—and deep connections to—the public sector, and a passion for building companies with a strong social mission.

Areas of Expertise

  • Fundraising
  • Teambuilding
  • Leadership

Brayden Young,

Co-Founder and Chief Alliances Officer, Sendoso

Braydan Young is the Co-Founder and Chief Alliances Officer of Sendoso, the leading Sending Platform. Braydan has more than a decade of experience in

business development and initially led the sales team at Sendoso before transitioning to a more people-focused role. As the cofounder of Sendoso, he oversees the learning and employee development functions for Sendoso team members. Braydan has previously served in roles at Demandbase (acquired by Intuit), Betts Recruiting, and Unum.


Areas of Expertise

  • Sales
  • Business Development
  • Fund Raising

Darryl Schoen

Founder and President, Manufacturers Financing Services

Darryl Schoen is the founder and president of Manufacturers Financing Services, which, since the early 1990s, has promoted equipment sales, especially in robotics and other manufacturing equipment, by providing custom-tailored, quick turnaround financing.  


Darryl has had a lifelong affinity for business: he first learned marketing as a child selling backyard peaches and plums from a wagon.  As a teen, he left a boring, sticky indoor job scooping ice cream to take up lifeguarding – which he parlayed into a business offering private swim lessons, where he learned about pricing.  After receiving his BS at Chico State and an MBA from the University of Wisconsin, Darryl completed a management training program in banking, then returned to California to be closer to family in Southern California, once again live in a warmer climate, and work with Brunswick.  Darryl structured equipment and real estate financing for bowling equipment customers in Western Canada and the Western US.  He left Brunswick to work in a more entrepreneurial environment, dealing with budgets, foreign currency hedging, and credit.  After expressing a desire to eventually run a company, the company’s four entrepreneur-owners challenged him to devise a business plan for a new business and present it to the company’s board of directors.   The Board signed off and agreed to fund Darryl’s new operation.  In 2007, he sold the successful business to two Japanese companies, which asked him to stay on as President.  He loves working with people – from Forbes 500 companies to mom-and-pop businesses – coming up with customized finance solutions, especially ones they haven’t thought of.


Areas of Expertise

  • Manufacturing
  • Finance
  • Sales

Kathryn Redman

Co-Founder

Michael K. Redman

CEO, Half a Bubble Out (HaBO)

Kathryn and Michael K. Redman are the husband-and-wife team behind Half a Bubble Out (HaBO), a marketing and business consulting firm that develops the whole leader for the whole business. They’re the co-authors of Fulfilled: The Passion & Provision Strategy for Building a Business with Profit, Purpose & Legacy. Michael and Kathryn have been featured in Forbes and Entrepreneur magazines, built two 7 figure companies, been visiting professors at multiple universities, are frequent guest speakers, and are the creators and co-hosts of the HaBO Village Business and Leadership Podcast. For over 19 years, they’ve helped business leaders grow in the areas of leadership development, marketing and sales, and company culture.


Areas of Expertise

  • Leadership Development
  • Marketing
  • Sales
  • Company Culture

John C. Myer

Attorney at Law & Center for Entrepreneurship, California State University, Chico

John is a serial entrepreneur (and an attorney) who relishes the challenge of building teams to execute on a vision.  Following the acquisition of his last company, John currently focuses on operational excellence as Senior Director of Business Operations at DataRobot Inc., an artificial intelligence cloud platform company.  Over the last six years, John has served as the Chief Legal Officer and/or Chief Operating Officer of three companies that were acquired by Oracle, IBM and DataRobot respectively. Prior to these acquisitions, John has had a widely varied career that ranged from leading, building and advising successful companies in fields as varied as self-service storage, 3D laser Scanning and an international dive resort.  In fact, he started his very first company straight out of college and looks forward to helping you.

 

Areas of Expertise

  • Formation, governance and compliance
  • Team building and leadership
  • Systems and operational excellence