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Stage2Startups presented a "heart-to-heart" and "head-to-head" discussion about the pros and cons of solopreneurship vs. co-founders. Speakers included Columbia alums Adrienne Smith, CEO & Founder of Gridiron Queendom (a destination site for women and girls who play or love football) and Harlem Hip-Hop Tours, Julie Rothberg, co-founder of 13th & Third Wines (a new boutique wine brand she co-founded with her husband) and Craig Delsack, a startup lawyer who shared insights and answered questions on various entrepreneurial topics. Moderating the discussion was Stage2Startups' co-founder and fellow solopreneur Tony Palladino.

A funding advice panel tackled hard questions regarding how to raise money for business ventures. Panelists included PhD candidate Dana Kanze who shared her research on the funding gender gap, Julia Pimsleur who shared her experience raising funds for Little Pim and her program to help one million women create million-dollar businesses, Chuck Pettid who introduced the Republic equity crowdfunding platform, Peter Rigby who spoke about investing in high-growth ventures through Astia Angels and Laura Watkins who shared the value of participating in the Friends of ebay tech accelerator program. Moderating this team was Jeanne Gray, editor and publisher of American Entrepreneurship.

January 23 and 25, 2018
Truth Series Workshops:
- Are you Ready to be a Founder?
- Is this the Year to Follow Your Startup Passion?

Stage2Startups hosted a new workshop series focused on topical issues encountered during the startup launch and growth process. Topics covered included lifestyle impact, business planning, operations/resource management, and other important considerations/requirements. Moderating the discussion was Stage2Startups' co-founder and fellow solopreneur Tony Palladino.

All entrepreneurs know the challenges to getting their dreams and passions off the ground and this group of entrepreneurs shared their challenges with you. Dawn McGee Strickland, LIU-Brooklyn's Executive Director of the Center for Entrepreneurship, hosted a group of very diverse entrepreneurs as they shared their secrets and motivations for striking out on their own and going the entrepreneurial path: eBay Power Seller Kathy Terrill joined Zachary Prell, menswear designer, Judy Wong, dog paradise owner and Carlos Vassallo, livestreaming visionary as they all looked back on those early first steps of entrepreneurship.

Dawn McGee Strickland, LIU-Brooklyn's Center of Entrepreneurship's Executive Director, interviewed entrepreneur Helena Fogerty, CEO of Mi Ola, about the challenges of raising money from venture capitalists, angels, and other funders. Also providing advice on the panel were NYC Small Business Solutions specialist Calvin Fletcher who explained how NYC can help entrepreneurs find funding, Lower East Side Credit Union's representative Angel Garcia who talked about the benefits of applying for financing from a credit union and Raise the Credit and Business Kings CEO Andres Rosa who talked about the impact of personal and business credit ratings on the fundraising process.

Observation from attendees:

“I attended the event held on August 2, 2017 by Stage2Startups on different Funding options for Entrepreneurs to explore. The event location was well organized and the speakers had much valuable information to provide. However, what really appealed to me as an attendee was the choice of topics, the size, and overall environment of the event in comparison to other networking meetings that I have attended in the past. It was not that large to become overwhelming but was the right size to make it really personable and comfortable for attendees to have all their questions answered. The tone of the meeting was not formal and stuffy at all, in fact the moderator kept the mood upbeat which immediately allowed the participants to be spontaneous and the audience to have a relaxed interaction. It was also apparent that the organizers had put in a lot of thought in choosing topics that would be realistic and relevant to busy entrepreneurs. I highly recommend Stage2Startups and encourage those interested to attend their upcoming events.”
- Priya Thacker – CEO, Vedic Synergy, Inc. ,

"Funding Options for Mid-Life Startup Founders & Experienced Entrepreneurs was a well organized and informative seminar and panel discussion. While the content and information provided by the speakers and organizer were superlative, what set this event apart was its intimate local business workshop feel. People engaged in spirited discussion, learned new ways of thinking about financing, and shared stories and information that provided direction and a solid foundation for further action." 
- Franklin Abrams - Partner,

September 26, 2017
Business Partners - The Search, the Equity Split, the Agreements

A moderated discussion about finding, motivating and keeping business partners as your business grows from concept to reality to growing entity to company sale! This was a "let down your guard, heart-to-heart talk" among current and new entrepreneurs, those looking for partners and those looking to be partners about this most important and often overlooked (because its hard!) aspect of the startup/growth process. This session was only for entrepreneurs or potential partners, not for vendors interested in selling services or products. The intent was to do some brainstorming and share best practices and lessons learned with the intent to make your next partnership arrangement stronger.

Seasoned entrepreneurs shared their experience and insight on their own journey from employee to startup founder. Panelists included former CIO and SVP of MetLife Larry Blakeman (now COO of QuaEra Insights, a data analytics consulting firm), former editor in chief of McCall's Sally Koslow (now a 5X self-employed author who embraces the gig economy), founder of HudsonWay Immersion School Sharon Huang, and founder and CEO of DMOS Collective Susan Pieper. Moderating this event was Carlos Vassallo, serial entrepreneur and COO of, a live streaming platform, who was also a corporate escapee from IBM, and Kathy Terrill, an ebay power seller, actress and business coach who is founder of

August 2, 2017
Funding Options for Mid-life Startup Founders & Experienced Entrepreneurs
August 30, 2017
From Employee to Startup Founder