Business & Career Entreprenuership Event

Event Review: Women Entrepreneurs: Pitch Party for Female Founders

Thursday afternoon I found myself double booked with no desire to do anything but take a nap on my couch and stream my favorite shows. (Yes, I have moments of absolute unproductivity. This is why I am not Beyoncé.) I texted my friend that I did not feel like going to either event. Her response, “We have goals. I don’t care. Go to the women’s event. Sleeping is going to get you nowhere.” Annoyed, I began to get ready.

As I walked into the room of an unfamiliar building that housed a company I heard but did not know very much about, The Cannon, I found myself both intimidated and excited. I saw a vendor booth for a familiar organization that I had worked with in the past, Lemonade Day. I tried to spark conversation with the new staff. It was awkward to say the least. It is always an uncomfortable feeling not knowing anyone in the room. So what did I do, I found the bar of course. Disclaimer: This is not me endorsing drinking. I ordered a glass of prosecco (my favorite if anyone was wondering), and I told myself, “Okay, Christina, suck it up. We are doing this.” I stopped by another booth, Social Mama, grabbed a card, and took a swing at working the room. After my unsuccessful attempt of conducting a behavior that usually comes naturally to me, I took a seat at the center of the room and waited for the Women Entrepreneurs: Pitch Party for Female Founders to begin.

The first pitch was from Dr. Brittany Barreto and her company X & Y Technologies that offer a product called Pheramor. Pheramor uses your DNA to help you find love with someone who is genetically compatible. (Sigh of relief. I found my comfort point, kickass women!)

The second pitch was for a company called IDEA Kids Lab, presented by owner Anju Ray. IDEA Kids Lab is a place for kids to develop skills in STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics).

The third pitch was given by Abe Matamoros…record scratch…Abe? Like a man? Yes, Abe. Like Abraham Lincoln, Abraham from the Bible, and Cain and Abel. Oh don’t get your panties in a bunch, like one lady in the audience. His co-founders, Hieu Nguyen and Regina Vatterott, were in attendance. Regina was actually planning to do the pitch, but lost her voice the day of submission. Their product Elliegrid is a smart pill box that makes organizing and taking medicine an easier process.

After the pitches, it was time to “party.” I guess that is why there were three bars. That annoyed feeling that had come from being forced to leave my house was replaced with excitement and inspiration. I started to work the room. I was able to have a conversation with each of the female founders, an even planned to grab food with one. I met women with their own consulting businesses, commercial real estate companies, beauty product businesses, and PR firms. I even had the chance to converse with the Cannon team: Founder and CEO Lawson Gow, Chief Financial Officer Bret McDonald, and  Managing Director Maigen Berg, a woman. The Cannon is a co-working space where entrepreneurs come to “launch” their new ventures. Not only are they expanding their original site located in West Houston, they are opening a second site in the heart of the Galleria area. The Cannon also has a investor network called, Cannon Ventures. If you know me, you know I am inspired.

So on my gratitude post-it for Thursday, I wrote that I was grateful for: Chelbi, even though she is annoying. Thanks for pushing me to go!



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Christina is a program manager for Operation HOPE and is pursuing her Masters in Public Administration & Policy at American University. She holds a Certificate in General Management from Stanford Graduate School of Business. In 2012, she started her career with JPMorgan Chase. She was involved in the firm’s Volunteer Leadership Group and Business Resource Groups, serving as Communications/Marketing Co-Chair of the Women’s Interactive Network. She moved on to spend two years as a project manager for Heritage Finance Holdings. A graduate of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where she earned a B.A. in Communication, Christina Danielle Cornelius is committed to “saving the world, one entrepreneurial venture at a time.”


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