When tech culture’s easy vibe combines with New York City’s 24/7 work culture, it's inevitable that the local industry creates a lively social scene -- minus the socialites and underachieving trustfund babies. Instead, such industry events create huge pools of new and fresh faces of ambitious professionals. This has been the case since the tech scene's earliest days -- when the New York City startup community was much smaller.
Lindsey Green, a top tech publicist and current vice president of SKDKnickerbocker, recalls the startup scene in 2005. Just a decade ago, she would frequent creative meetups with a tight circle of big-name pioneer in the New York tech community. Fast forward to the present, where the scene has transformed from a few startups to tens of thousands, as local tech leaders proactively join panels, judge pitch contests and turn industry meetups into must-see events.
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Such fests have an “air of coolness and casual,” says Alison Bryce, a director at Northside Media Group, while other business events "tend to be more corporate and structured. Northside is about cultivating the essence of what Brooklyn is which is creative, homegrown and hardworking.”
While New York is known for its workaholics and long commutes, these tech meetups are resourceful for not only building a pro-network but also connecting with the hottest city dwellers.
So we tapped Bryce and Green's extensive startup connections to find the industry's movers and shakers. We asked for the most inspiring speakers and immersed investors who are redefining the local economy, job market and social scene of the tri-state area. (They also happen to embody what being a fashionable and magnetic New Yorker is all about.) The results are listed in random below.
1. Andy Dunn, Founder, Bonobos
2. Rameet Chawla, Founder, Fueled
3. Soraya Darabi, Founder, Zady
4. Guy Krief, Co-founder & SVP of Innovation, Persado
5. Alex Douzet, CEO, TheLadders
6. and 7. Jennifer Fleiss and Jenn Hyman, Co-founders, Rent the Runway
8. Deborah Jackson, Founder & CEO, Plum Alley
9. Mario Schlosser, Founder, Oscar
10. Claire Mazur, Co-founder, Of a Kind
11. Peter Vidani, CTO, Tumblr
12. Eric Hippeau, Partner, Lerer Ventures
13. Josh Kushner, Founder, Thrive Capital (far right)
14. Ben Sun, General Partner, High Peaks Venture Partners
15. and 16. Matthew Burnett and Tanya Menendez, Co-Founders, Maker's Row
17. Dennis Crowley, Founder, Foursquare
18. and 19. Kathryn Minshew, Alexandra Cavoulacos, Co-founders, The Muse
20. Bre Pettis, Founder, MakerBot
21. Viraj Puri, Founder, Co-founder, Gotham Greens
22. and 23. Mukesh Patel and Charlie Patel, Co-founders, JuiceTank (NJ)
24. Jon Stein, CEO and Founder, Betterment
25. Jalak Jobanputra, Founder & Partner, Future Perfect Ventures
26. Andy Kahl, Senior Director of Transparency, Ghostery
27. Andrew Kortina, Co-founder, Venmo (right)
(A distinct, honorable mention goes to Iqram Magdon-Ismail, left, Co-founder, for making quite the fashion statement at a recent panel.)
28. Kellee Khalil, Founder, Loverly
29. And 30. Carly Zakin and Danielle Weisberg, Co-founders, theSkimm
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