The online conference expands to include STEM, GEOSPATIAL and WOMEN’s focused sessions

STL Startup Week 2020 was held virtually this year with an extended lineup of online workshops and special events designed for idea-thinkers, innovators, researchers, investors, entrepreneurs, and small business owners to connect, learn, and grow their businesses. The series of virtual events happened the week of November 9 – 14, 2020. STL Startup Week’s main focus is to provide area startups with information and resources to start or grow their businesses, even during an uncertain time with the coronavirus pandemic.  


“The St. Louis startup community has continued to support our startups and collaborate on events like VISION and STL Startup Week. In this challenging time, we must continue to help the region’s entrepreneurs adapt to changes in the economy and markets. Additionally, in times of high unemployment, more people want to explore starting their own businesses. STL Startup Week will focus on facilitating connections to the 75+ organizations in the community and delivering useful content on how to start a business,” reported Phyllis Ellison, Managing Director of STL Startup Week.


The 2020 workshops and special events will focus on entrepreneur education, introduction to startup resources, connection to fellow business owners, communication on the current state of the St. Louis startup ecosystem and national trends, a celebration of small business successes, and programming for student entrepreneurs at the high school and college level.


Virtual attendees can access over 50 sessions through the week, from the opening Daily Espresso to the closing Bourbon Friday and Act in Space Hackathon. Matt Menietti will host the Daily Espresso every morning at 9:30 am to preview the day’s activities and news from the startup community.  


The topic tracks include:


  • Women Entrepreneurs
  • Funding & Investing
  • Building Your Business
  • Geospatial, Cyber & Space
  • Bio & Life Sciences
  • Students & STEM
  • Tech Skill Building with Claim Academy and General Assembly
  • EQ Ecosystem Lab


Topics of interest for local, regional, and national startups extend from the startup community's state to an in-depth conversation about equity and inclusion as it relates to the innovation and tech communities. In addition to the many local speakers, the virtual format allows for sessions lead by TechStars, TechLink Center, and the U.S. Act in Space hackathon. Attendees should select the most interest and need sessions rather than expect to attend five days of back-to-back programming.


Partial List of Session Leaders:


  • Dena Ladd – WISER
  • Jonathan Allen – EQ Ecosystem Labs
  • Alyce Herndon
  • Alexces Bartley & Melissa Ellison – Resource Fair
  • Devon Moody-Graham – CEO Mom
  • Julie Maurer – Arch Grants
  • Cari Perez – General Assembly
  • Natalie Self – STEM STL
  • Mike Bynum – Stadia Ventures & UMSL Accelerator
  • Frank Hopper - Capital Innovators
  • Katie Silversmith – Thrive Coworking
  • Ola Ayeni – Claim Academy
  • Lesa Mitchell – TechStars
  • Beth Letscher - Cortex
  • Mark Tatgenhorst – Geosaurus at T-REX
  • Erin Joy – Female Founders panel
  • Tyler Mathews – Venture Café
  • Xanthe Meyer – Battle of the Saints Teen pitch competition
  • Lindsey Harrison – BioSTL Inclusion session
  • Erik Lutenegger – Bourbon Friday
  • Matt Homann – Thinksgiving
  • Florence Flick – Act in Space hackathon
  • Bronwyn Morgan


 For more information about the activities happening during the 2020 STL Startup Week, visit www.stlouisstartupweek.com.