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  • Writer's pictureCarol Ruth Weber

2020 Startups Celebrates Entrepreneurial Empowerment With VIP Kick-Off

The future of entrepreneurial empowerment was celebrated in NYC fashion on Wednesday, June 1, 2016 with an exciting meet and greet. The board of amazing advisors, as well as mentors, sponsors and partners mingled with participants and industry know-hows networking and jump starting the amazing NYC 2020 Startups subsidized program. The innovative new program has been specifically formed to help young entrepreneur start-ups beyond just the technological world learn how to plan the future in order to realize their business vision.

Mark Gold, managing director at 2020 Startups, introduced the keynote speaker for the evening Tina Glickman, business development director of North America for With Gust working to match Startups with world investors, Glickman is the perfect match as one of the mentors to the participants. As part of her efforts Glickman gave away copies of Gust CEO David S. Rose’s book "The Startups Checklist" to the audience of highly regarded professionals.

2020 Startups long term objective is to guide the participants with knowledge in order for them to be able to grow and maintain their small businesses, and create employment. It is obvious why these startup entrepreneurs won the coveted spots in the program. The brilliant young business people spoke about and showcased their startups including an at home blood test to screen for anemia and an amazing eco-friendly foldable portable bike helmet.

The eight inaugural accelerator participants chosen presented their amazing innovative intriguing startups to the audience.

“Talia Douaidy is a New York based packaging designer. Born in Paris to a Lebanese family, Talia grew up between Europe and the Middle East and draws inspiration from her eclectic background and cultural exposure. Beyond her professional and academic experience, her personal background equally impacts her approach of design as an effective and powerful tool for change. Her latest work has involved the use of a wide range of materials and innovative production techniques, resulting in unique and innovative pieces.”

Brian O’Connell co-founded eNeighbr after being tired of never being able to get anything from Amazon delivered to his home. “Eager not only to end New Yorkers' frustration with delivery, Brian' ambition is for eNeighbr to be the logistics solution and partner in last mile delivery for companies like UPS and Amazon.”

Lauren Nadata is the VP of Northeast Operations at Energex Inc. “Energex develops occupancy based energy management systems for global residential, commercial office, and hospitality markets. Affordable and sustainable, the Energex system can interface with most old and new HVAC and lighting systems to significantly reduce energy emissions and expenses with a rapid, cost-effective solution.”

Jakob Finkel focuses on an alternative to losing money playing daily-fantasy sports. Finkel’s created Picksanity to offer the sports fan a fresh way to quantify their sports knowledge. With a mission statement “Changing the game, one pick at a time,” is due to debut in September 2016.

“Isis Shiffer is an industrial designer based in Brooklyn. She earned her BFA in fine art from Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts/UPenn, with a concentration in figurative sculpture. After that she worked for three years at an artisan bicycle manufacturer and fell in love with designing things that work, ultimately going back to school at Pratt Institute for a Master's in industrial design. Isis' work focuses on mobility, sustainability, and fostering an engagement with the world. Her designs include folding, recyclable helmet for bikes, a scooter that folds to the size of a laptop and lifestyle concepts both sublime and ridiculous.”

Dina Stein is the founder and CEO of “Desserts After Dark.” Stein has focused her business on a healthy dessert alternative that is amazingly sweet and delicious. Currently her company is making a statement in South Brooklyn as Stein seeks to expand. “Her artisanal desserts are organic, gluten free, sugar free, guilt free and kosher! Dina has recently been featured on Health Lifestyle TV Show with Erlado and at Microsoft.”

Shlomo Zalman Bregman is amazingly accomplished at age 37. Along with being a lawyer, rabbi and radio personality, Bregman is also an internationally recognized motivational speaker, peak performance and business consultant, author, and relationship coach. “He is the Founder and CEO of ‘Bregman Success LLC.’ Shlomo’s energetic and empowering messages currently reach over 50,000 per week via his content on YouTube, Facebook, radio broadcasts on 97.5 FM in New York, his column in the Flatbush Jewish Journal, and more. He also is the author of the best-selling Torah Commentary book, ‘Short and Sweet,’ which is distributed internationally by Feldheim Publishers.”

Dawn Moses is the founder and principle designer at Studio Phia. In a partnership with Erika Tyburski of Sanguina Inc., Moses is currently working to launch Nema, “A disposable point-of-care diagnostic test designed for people to screen and monitor for anemia at home.” A business accelerator herself, Moses is a former senior VP at Deutsch NY. “She has over 11 years of experience in acting as a creative catalyst, providing strategic leadership, and helping businesses large and small to innovate, disrupt, and accelerate. She holds a Master of Industrial Design from Pratt Institute. Dawn loves big ideas, small details, and new challenges. Her work has won design awards in Tokyo Japan and New York.”

The event was held in the living room space provided by LMHQ, a New York City subsidized program by Downtown Alliance, for the 2020 Startups program. The beautiful collaborate workspace environment includes five meeting rooms equipped with top-tier media, two living rooms, two workspaces, an event space and coffee shop. Within this 24-hour workspace, participants are treated to a marketing laboratory, executive workshops, one-on-one mentor, and investment assistance for three months of intense tutoring and learning.

The sushi bar reception included decadent healthy deserts by participant Stein. Wonderful networking opportunities took place with renowned NYC companies and organizations. President of the Manhattan Chamber of Commerce, Jessica Walker, Kerianne DeSantis, Community Manager at Microsoft, and Marcos Dinnerstein, Editor at “Digital.NYC,” mingled along with Luis Leon, Startups Ecosystem Business Development, at IBM, and Jill Lazar, Marketing Manager at the “Wall Street Journal.”

Do not be afraid to pursue dreams into reality. Never be afraid to dance!

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