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The Founder Institute, the world’s most proven network to turn ideas into fundable startups, is excited to announce that we are now accepting applications for the San Diego program!

If you could use a structured process and a lifetime of support from San Diego's top investors and entrepreneurs to build a startup, then apply to the San Diego Founder Institute today.

Since 2009, our highly-structured accelerator programs have helped entrepreneurs at the earliest stages grow quickly, know what to do next, and make connections with the largest community of startup advisors.

It all starts with our renowned ‘FI Core’ accelerator, which pushes founders at the idea and pre-seed stages to reach the milestones needed for investment and sustained growth. Alumni of FI Core then receive free access to our advanced ‘Founder Lab’ accelerators for years to come, and can get matched with prospective investors in the FI Venture Network, a collection of global funds actively investing in the earliest rounds of funding. 

To celebrate the launch, the Founder Institute will host several free online startup events in San Diego, where you can learn from top entrepreneurs:

  • How to Grow Your Personal Brand on LinkedIn as a Startup Founder: 10:00am, Oct 11, 2023 (America/Los_Angeles):
  • Founder Institute Online Information Session:
  • Build Your Brand on a Budget: The Founder’s Starter Pack: 10:00am, Oct 16, 2023 (America/Los_Angeles):
  • Venture Trailblazers, featuring Scott Belsky (Chief Strategy Officer & EVP, Adobe): 6:45am, Oct 17, 2023 (America/Los_Angeles):
  • Goal Setting for Startups – Intro to OKRs: 10:00am, Oct 18, 2023 (America/Los_Angeles):
  • Co-Founders Matchmaking: Online Networking Event: 10:00am, Oct 23, 2023 (America/Los_Angeles):
  • One-to-One with a Venture Builder : 10:00am, Oct 25, 2023 (America/Los_Angeles):
  • Unlock over $500K Monthly Sales with LinkedIn: A Proven Roadmap: 10:00am, Oct 30, 2023 (America/Los_Angeles):
  • Pitch Lounge: Practice Pitching Your Business Idea to Startup Experts: 10:00am, Nov 01, 2023 (America/Los_Angeles):
  • The Pitch Deck Toolbox: How to Influence Your Audience: 10:00am, Nov 06, 2023 (America/Los_Angeles):
  • 3 Things Investors Hate About Online Pitches: 10:00am, Nov 08, 2023 (America/Los_Angeles):
  • How to Budget Your Next Round of Funding: 10:00am, Nov 20, 2023 (America/Los_Angeles):

The San Diego program is led by one of the region's top startup leaders, Mike Sherbakov (General Partner, The Veteran Fund).

In addition, some of San Diego's top investors, entrepreneurs, and CEOs will be participating in the program, providing them with expert feedback and evaluation. The list of startup mentors for the San Diego Founder Institute includes:

  • Aaron Keith: CEO, Buildify Systems
  • Adam Montgomery: Fundraising Manager, Wefunder
  • Al Bsharah: Interlock Capital, Managing Partner
  • Albert Chow: Co-Founder | Chief Executive Officer, Opti
  • Alex Bard: Founder & CEO, Assistly
  • Alex Green: Founder, Kanshi LLC
  • Amar Harrag: CEO, Allied Green Realty
  • Amir Emadi: CEO, Skylift Global
  • Andrew Gottlieb: Founder & CEO, No Typical Moments
  • Andy White: Startup Operations, Keshif Ventures
  • Annie Brown: Founder, Lips
  • Anton Monk: Co-Founder/ VP of Technology , Entropic Communications
  • Austin Neudecker: Managing Partner, Weave Growth Partners
  • Aviv Shalgi: CEO, Solar Simplified
  • Bardia Moayedi: Partner, Snell & Wilmer
  • Ben Cote: Mentor, Founder Institute
  • Brian Storms: no title, No company
  • Brian Ford: Partnership Director, Founder Institute San Diego
  • Brian Olearczyk: CRO, RevCult
  • Bryant Walker: Founder, TAVO Media Group
  • Carl Thomas: Chief Revenue and Business Development Officer, Hookit
  • Carlo Rivis: CEO & Founder, Innovation Discovery
  • Caroline Arzoo: Partnerships, TurboSBIR
  • Cassius Kiani: Founder & Head of Product ,
  • Chintan Oza: Founder, Anantam Ecosystems
  • Chris Capdevila: Founder & Former CEO, LogicalApps
  • Chris Carter: CEO & Co Founder, VideoFort
  • Christine "Chrissy" McDannell: Principle, The Magnolia Firm
  • Cleve Adams: Principal
  • Courtney Gant: CEO & Co-Founder, Skooltopia
  • Dan O'neill: VP Engineering, Certona
  • Dane Drotts: CoFounder, TangoCode
  • Daniel O'neil: Executive Director, Smart Chicago Collaborative
  • Daniel Obodovski: Co-founder, Managing Partner, Diosys Technologies LLC
  • Daniel Arroyo: President & CTO, AstroPrint
  • Darryl Rettig: Co Founder & CTO, DonationMatch
  • David Stevens: Founder & CEO, Hydroponic Creations
  • David Metzler: Managing Director, Serenity Ventures
  • David Steel: CEO, EveryoneLinked
  • DC Palter: Angel Investor, Tech Coast Angels
  • Derren Burrell: Venture Capitalist, Veteran Ventures
  • Derrick Oien: CEO & Founder
  • Ed Cleary: Principal, Root Strategy Group
  • Ellen Chang: Partner, Lightspeed Innovations
  • Eric Grab: Aspiring Explorer, Technologist, Advisor, and Coach, Formerly: Amazon, Booz Allen, DivX, Jaunt, San Diego State
  • Eric Weiss: Executive Coach, Full Cycle Executive Coaching
  • Fabian Geyrhalter: Founder and Principal, FINIEN
  • Farooq Anjum, Ph D: Co Founder & CEO, Gro Guru
  • Flossie Hall: Director Of Community Relations, Stella Labs
  • Frank Peters: Founder & Host, Frank Peters Show
  • Fred Morrison: CEO, Simplexity
  • Gaurav Bhattacharya: CEO,
  • Genevieve Le Marchal: Managing Partner, Suncoast Ventures
  • George Stepancich, Invisionate
  • Gina Campbell: Strategy & Demand Gen (Direct to Consumer Group), SONY, Formerly DivX,
  • Grant Creighton: CEO & Founder, LooperLink - LOOPER Golf
  • Greg Moser: President & CTO, ShipCalm
  • Hayley Evans: Co Founder, Women Making Waves
  • Ian Suttle: Engineering Director, Google
  • Iva Teixeira: CEO, The Good Face Project
  • Jacob Sapochnick: CEO, Sapochnick Law Firm
  • James Schmachtenberger: CEO, Neurohacker Collective
  • James Hereford: Co-Founder, Launch Factory
  • Jason Pang: CEO, InvolveHub, Inc.
  • Jason Liebrecht: VP of Technology, Activbody Inc
  • Jason Zinn: Partner, Emerged, Inc.
  • Jeff Smith: CEO, Growth Catalyst
  • Jenny Rodriguez: CEO & Founder, IVOREEZ
  • Jess Ewart: Senior Partner, New World Ventures
  • Jessica Pratt: Senior Vice President of Sales, Pop & Bottle
  • Jim Carlson: Founder, DFL Technology
  • Joe Bezdek: Co-founder, DivX, Inc.
  • John Zdanowski: Co-Founder, Assembled Brands
  • John Stilo: Head of Finance, Moov
  • Jon Carder: CEO, Vessel Health
  • Jonah Peake: CoFounder, Granada Fund
  • Jose Doval: CEO & Founder , XBand Sports
  • Juan Toledano: CoFounder, Sundaze
  • Judy Tsuei: Founder, Wild Hearted Words
  • Justin Renfro: Director of Partnerships, WeFunder
  • Justin Nahama: Partner, FisherBroyles, LLP
  • Kelly Conkright: Founder, The Brand Terminal
  • Ken Wahlster: Founder & CEO,
  • Ken Davenport: CEO, Mission Edge
  • Kim Walpole: Co-Founder / CEO,
  • Lance Cottrell: Founder, Feel the Boot
  • Larry Kesslin: Chief Connector, Spire
  • Lauren Rowley: Director of Investor Relations, Stella Impact Capital
  • Lee Mills: CEO, Pixly
  • Leo Spiegel: Managing Partner, Mission Ventures
  • Lucas Root: Founder, CEO, SGIC Consulting
  • Mara Rada: CEO & Chief of Strategy, Feral (
  • Maria Pope: Community Manager, Republic
  • Mark How: CEO, NewGrowth & Origins eCommerce
  • Mark Schmid: CEO, Art Function
  • Martín Martinez: Executive Director, Founder Institute Texas
  • Matthew Hedayat: CEO and COO, Stanford Technical Group
  • Melissa Li: Managing Partner and Head of Community, Dorm Room Fund
  • Merrin Muxlow: Executive Director, TiE South Coast
  • Michael Davidovich: Founder, Direct EDI, Inc.
  • Michael Floyd: Software Engineering and Product Management Leader, Freelance Software Engineering and Product Management Consultant
  • Michel Kripalani: CEO, Oceanhouse Media
  • Mike Sherbakov: General Partner, The Veteran Fund
  • Mike Steadman: CEO, IRONBOUND Media
  • Mysty Rusk: Executive Director, USD School of Business
  • Neal Bloom: Managing Partner, Interlock Capital
  • Neil Senturia: CEO, Blackbird Ventures
  • Nektar Baziotis: Founder, ICARUS
  • Nelly Yusupova: Founder,
  • Nerissa Zhang: CEO, Bright App
  • Noah Wallach: Founder, Hope OS
  • Pablo A. Fernandez: CEO, Secret Table
  • Parker Harris: CEO, Junto Global
  • Pat Walsh: Co-Founder / Chief Impact Officer
  • Paula Sweis: Principal, SILVERWEISS International
  • Pete Biggam: Co-Lead FI San Francisco / CEO of, Blacksite Solutions
  • Peter Shaw: Managing Director , Procopio Business Advisors
  • Regina Bernal: CEO, Trailblazer
  • Reid Carr: CEO & Founder, Red Door Interactive
  • Rhana Pytell Kozak: CEO & Founder , BRIGHTERSTEP
  • Ricardo Dos Santos: Sr Director of New Business Development , Biological Dynamics
  • Rick Valencia: Founder, ProfitLine
  • Rishi Sharma: Venture Partner, Going VC
  • Rocco Cortese: President, Entrepreneurs Organization (E.O.)
  • Roger Rappoport: Partner, Procopio
  • Rupak Doshi: CEO, TurboSBIR
  • Ryan Tseng: Co Founder, Warehouse Innovations
  • Ryan Micheletti: Head of Global Operations, Founder Institute
  • Saba Karim: Entrepreneur & Investor, Techstars
  • Sameer Sortur: Founding Partner, SquareCircle Ventures
  • Sarah Apsel: Angel Investor, 37 Angels
  • Scot Chisholm: CEO & Chairman, StayClassy
  • Scott Davis: Director of Veteran Entrepreneuership, PenFed Foundation
  • Shahi Ghanem: Managing Director, WI Harper Group
  • Shahin Enayati: Managing Director, Made Noble Corporation
  • Shaun Alger: CRO, Volohaus
  • Stacey Cooper: Partner, Stacey Cooper Law
  • Steven Morley: Business Advisor, Success4Execs
  • Stuart Volkow: Program Manager, UCSD
  • Taj Adhav: Founder, Leasecake
  • Tarun Gulati: Founder & CEO, Adios
  • Tay Nguyen: Owner, Gate Consulting
  • Tirrell Payton: Tirrell Payton - Founder & CEO, Kaliki (San Diego FI), Kaliki
  • Todd Goldstein: EVP, Global Partnerships & Business Development, Talent Inc.
  • Trevor Longino: Chief Marketing Officer, Unito
  • Troy Hazard: Global President, Entrepreneurs Organization
  • Ty Vachon: CEO,
  • Tyson Mc Dowell: President, Avadyne Health
  • Yann Deredec: CEO, Yama Group
  • Yemi Oluseun: Founder/ CEO - Fintech, SaaS Business Growth, Automation & Change Management, The Change Hive

  • And many more to be announced.

Join us in San Diego to build a great company in 2023. 

Apply to the San Diego Founder Institute today, or learn more at  

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