to page content
to site navigation
Chip Conley is the founder and CEO of Joie de Vivre Hospitality, California's largest boutique hotel company now celebrating its 20th anniversary. Starting out with virtually no industry experience, Chip opened his first
hotel, The Phoenix, in San Francisco's edgy Tenderloin district on a wing and a prayer. The company now consists of over 40 award-winning hotels, restaurants and spas across the state with over 2,500 employees and revenues close to 200
million dollars. Each unique property is designed to produce what Chip calls "identity refreshment" for his guests. The company gleans inspiration for each hotel from popular magazines such as Rolling Stone (The Phoenix), The New Yorker
(Hotel Rex), Dwell (Vitale), Wired (Avante) and others. Chip and his company's time-tested techniques have been featured in Business 2.0, TIME, Fast Company, Fortune, People and other leading publications - so many magazines, so many new
hotel possibilities! A popular speaker and innovative leader, Chip is regularly consulted by corporate, civic and academic institutions for his opinions, guidance and wisdom on building and maintaining a successful and transformative
enterprise involving areas such as organizational leadership, creative business development, corporate social responsibility and spirit in business. In his new book, PEAK: How Great Companies Get Their Mojo From Maslow,
Chip shares his unique prescription for success based on the iconic Hierarchy of Needs. His new theory illustrates how Employees, Customers and Investors are ultimately motivated by peak experiences, and he demonstrates how to create these
for each using real-world examples from his own company and others. Chip has been honored with the top hospitality industry awards and is recognized as a committed and creative philanthropist. He is the founder of San Francisco's Annual
Celebrity Pool Toss, which has raised over 3 milli
John G. Melo is the Chief Executive Officer of Amyris Biotechnologies, a synthetic biology company working to reduce the cost of curing malaria and producing lower carbon, second generation bio-fuels. He was previously
president of U.S. Fuels for BP, where he led one of the world's largest petroleum marketing, logistics, and trading businesses. While in this role he successfully grew revenues from $25 billion to $34 billion and increased net cash by $1
billion. During this time his team developed one of the world's most successful ethanol blending and marketing businesses. He also worked on the development of BP's "Helios" re-branding. Prior to his eight years with BP, Mr. Melo was a
director with Ernst & Young in San Jose, California, and a management team member for several Northern California start-ups, including Computer Aided Services and Alldata Corporation. John serves on the Board of Directors for U.S. Oil,
a $1.6 billion energy company, and Cilion, a leading low-cost ethanol manufacturer. John is a member of the Economic Club of Chicago, The Chicago Club, The Chicago Council on Global Affairs, and YPO. He enjoys visiting his home country of
Azores, Portugal, as well as skiing, biking, tennis, golf, and time with his children.
Steve Blank is a retired serial entrepreneur with over 30 years of experience in high technology companies and management. He is a Consulting Professor at Stanford in the Graduate School of Engineering STVP Program.
Steve has been a founder or participant in eight Silicon Valley startups since 1978. His last company, E.piphany, started in his living room. His other startups include two semiconductor companies (Zilog and MIPS Computers), a workstation
company (Convergent Technologies), a supercomputer firm (Ardent), a computer peripheral supplier (SuperMac), a military intelligence systems supplier (ESL) and a video game company (Rocket Science Games). Steve is on the board of
CafePress.com, an on-line marketplace, and IMVU, a 3D IM social network. Steve was appointed by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger to the California Coastal Commission and is the Chairman of Audubon California and on the board of the Peninsula
Open Space Trust (POST.) His Google Tech talk, "The Secret History of Silicon Valley" (available on YouTube) is one of the definitive views on the early history of innovation in Silicon Valley. Steve teaches entrepreneurship and a
methodology of managing marketing, sales and business development in high technology startups. His course text "Four Steps to the Epiphany" is the definitive work on Customer Development and is one of the foundations of Lean
With a decade of experience in venture capital, Erik has been a catalyst for Cleantech in Silicon Valley and abroad. He leads MDV's Cleantech investment team and applies his expertise in areas of solar, biofuels, energy
storage, industrial biotech and clean coal. Prior to MDV Erik worked at Interval Research Corp., a technology incubator funded by Paul Allen, and at Los Alamos National Laboratory as a technical staff member. He also consulted to several
seed and early stage venture capital firms. While pursuing a PhD in engineering at Stanford, Erik led an interdisciplinary project between the electrical, mechanical, and civil engineering departments to develop a next-generation
monitoring system for critical facilities. He holds a U.S. patent from his research work. Erik serves on the advisory council of the Stanford Precourt Institute for Energy Efficiency, as well as on the advisory boards of the Stanford
Technology Ventures Program (STVP), Stanford's BASES, NVCA Cleantech Council, and Cleantech Venture Network. He is a winner of the 2006 World Technology Award for Finance, presented by the World Technology Network, in association with the
New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), Dow Chemical, Cisco, TIME magazine, Fortune magazine, Science magazine/AAAS, Red Herring, and CNN. Erik earned a bachelor's degree in engineering from Harvey Mudd College and both doctoral and master's
degrees from the Stanford University School of Engineering.
William McDonough is an internationally renowned designer and one of the primary proponents and shapers of what he and his partners call 'The Next Industrial Revolution.' Time magazine recognized him
in 1999 as a 'Hero for the Planet', stating that "his utopianism is grounded in a unified philosophy that-in demonstrable and practical ways-is changing the design of the world." Time magazine again recognized Mr.
McDonough and Michael Braungart as "Heroes of the Environment" in October 2007. In 1996, Mr. McDonough received the Presidential Award for Sustainable Development, the nation's highest environmental honor; and in 2003 earned the U.S. EPA
Presidential Green Chemistry Challenge Award. In 2004 he received the National Design Award for exemplary achievement in the field of environmental design. In October 2007, Mr. McDonough was elected an International Fellow of the Royal
Institute of British Architects. Mr. McDonough is the founding principal of William McDonough + Partners, an internationally recognized design firm practicing ecologically, socially, and economically intelligent architecture and planning
in the U.S. and abroad. He is also principal of MBDC, a product and systems development firm assisting prominent client companies in designing profitable and environmentally intelligent solutions. Mr. McDonough is a Venture Partner at
VantagePoint Venture Partners in San Bruno, California. Mr. McDonough is an Alumni Research Professor at the University of Virginia's Darden Graduate School of Business Administration, and Consulting Professor of Civil and Environmental
Engineering at Stanford University. He also serves as U.S. Chairman and member of the Board of Councilors of the China-U.S. Center for Sustainable Development. He is part of the Management Committee of HRH The Prince of Wales's Business
& The Environment Programme at Cambridge University. From 1994-1999, Mr
Vinod grew up dreaming of being an entrepreneur. He was raised in an Indian Army household with no business or technology connections. When, at age 16, he first heard about Intel, he dreamt of starting his own technology
company. Upon graduating with a Bachelors in Electrical Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi, he tried to start a soy milk company to service the many people in India who did not have refrigerators. He then came to
the US and got his Masters in Biomedical Engineering at Carnegie-Mellon University. His startup dreams attracted him to Silicon Valley where he got an MBA at Stanford University in 1980. In 1982, Khosla started Sun Microsystems to build
workstations for software developers. At Sun he pioneered "open systems" and RISC processors. Sun was funded by long time friend and board member John Doerr of Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers. In 1986 he switched sides and joined
Kleiner Perkins where he was a general partner. There, he worked with Nexgen/AMD, Juniper, Excite, and many other ventures. In 2004, Khosla formed Khosla Ventures. Khosla Ventures offers venture assistance, strategic advice and capital to
entrepreneurs. The firm helps entrepreneurs extend the potential of their ideas in both traditional venture areas like the Internet, computing, mobile, and silicon technology arenas but also supports breakthrough scientific work in clean
technology areas such as bio-refineries for energy and bioplastics, solar, battery and other environmentally friendly technologies.
Judy Estrin is CEO of JLABS, LLC, formerly known as Packet Design Management Company, LLC. She is the author of Closing the Innovation Gap, published in September, 2008. Prior to co-founding Packet Design, in May 2000,
Estrin was chief technology officer for Cisco Systems. Beginning in 1981 Estrin co-founded three other successful technology companies: Bridge Communications, Network Computing Devices, and Precept Software. In 1998 Cisco Systems acquired
Precept, and she became Cisco's chief technology officer until April 2000. Estrin has been named three times to Fortune Magazine's list of the 50 most powerful women in American business. She sits on the boards of directors of The Walt
Disney Company and FedEx Corporation as well as two private company boards - Packet Design, Inc. and Arch Rock. She also sits on the advisory councils of Stanford's School of Engineering and Stanford's Bio-X initiative. She holds a B.S.
degree in math and computer science from UCLA, and an M.S. in electrical engineering from Stanford University.
Anna Patterson is President and Founder of search engine Cuil. Her focus is on scaling architecture, tackling one of the major problems in search-the exponential growth of the Internet. Anna was the architect of Google?s
large search index, TeraGoogle, that launched in early 2006. While at Google, Anna was the technical lead of one of the two Web ranking groups at Google, in charge of GoogleBase, and the manager for the core piece of Google's ad-matching
technology. She joined Google in 2004 after designing, writing and selling Recall-the largest search engine in existence at the time at 12 billion pages. Anna has a PhD in Computer Science from the University of Illinois at
Urbana-Champaign, and was a Research Scientist at Stanford University.
Teresa Briggs currently serves as a Managing Partner at Deloitte's Silicon Valley office. Over the past two years, Briggs has worked to double the firm's staff to at least 1,300. She joined the firm when only seven
percent of the partners were women. She arrived at Deloitte & Touche as one of the youngest partners in the company. Rising quickly, she moved to Deloitte's New York office working to redesign the company's corporate strategy at a
national level, which then led to her current position. On top of all her accomplishments at Deloitte, Briggs has served on the Management Board of Advisors at her alma mater, the University of Arizona, and she spent eight years serving on
the board of the Boys and Girls Club of San Francisco. Teresa also recently participated in the Leadership Group's Annual CEO/Elected Official Cycle‐To‐Work Day Challenge to help curb climate change, riding from Redwood
Shores to downtown San Jose and back. She was also recently named a "Woman of Distinction" in the San Jose / Silicon Valley Business Journal, and she has been added to the Business Journal's "Who's Who in Silicon Valley" list. Briggs holds
a Bachelor of Science from the University of Arizona.
Tom Kelley is currently General Manager at IDEO, a firm that helps its clients create innovative products, services and environments. Tom is a frequent speaker on managing innovation for U.S., Asian and European
audiences, and has appeared on international news programs for BBC Television and Nikkei Satellite News. As the co-author of three books, including The Art of Innovation: Lessons in Creativity from IDEO, America's Leading Design
Firm, Tom illuminates the strategies for fostering a culture and process of continuous innovation. Prior to joining IDEO, Tom was a management consultant for Towers Perrin, advising senior executives on organizational and
operational issues in North America, Asia and Australia. Tom holds an MBA in Marketing from the Haas School of Business at UC Berkeley, where he received the Delbert J. Duncan citation as the year's top marketing
Want to get connected? Sign up to receive regular news, polls and updates from The Kauffman Foundation.