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Meeting Minutes - 8/4/22

Minutes from the general meeting held on 4th August 2022

DVTI Meeting

August 4, 2022

Present: Beth Arman, Colleen Awad, Jim Blair, Ryan Buckley, Robert Carrera, George Carter, Jeanette Green, Lindy Johnson, Jags Krishnamurthy, Bob Linscheid, Carlyn Obringer, Melissa Rea, Marie Suvansin, Mariam Worsham, Gordon Zagar

  • Ryan opened the meeting at 3:02 pm.

  • Approval of June Minutes: Motion: Jeanette Green; Second: Beth Arman; Unanimous

  • Public Comments:

    1. Jeanette Green will be on the November ballot running to replace Deborah Mason for the Mount Diablo School District board, Area One.

  • DVTI Leadership Succession:

    1. We will have an election in September to replace the Chair and possibly nominate Vice Chairs. Feel free to run if you are interested. The Chair position has been a time commitment of about 10-15 hours per week.

  • Incubator Update – ESO Ventures & DVC Partnership (Beth Arman):

    1. ESO works with six colleges. West Valley and DVC will launch our first cohort this fall. The other cohorts (Canada College, Chabot College and Contra Costa College) will launch in the spring.

    2. The goal is to accelerate entrepreneurial success through Confidence (Community & Accountability), Competence (Training & Education) and Capital (first investment $2,500-$100,000). The challenge is helping entrepreneurs refine their message and understand their product and their customers. Beth will forward a digital flyer to the group in case you know anyone interested in applying for this cohort.

    3. ESO targets under invested communities. The average ESO Fellow identifies as Black, Brown or from an underserved community.

    4. We will be recruiting 25 to 30 people for this cohort.

    5. ESO Model:

      • Curriculum: Self-paced; competency-based; rooted in equity; 8 modules; Digital ESO workbook; Final Project – ESO Growth Plan

      • Cohort: 25 entrepreneurs per cohort; weekly evening sessions; 10 weeks, 1.5 hour/session, peer-led growth pods; weekly action logs

      • Coaching: diverse identities & backgrounds; DEI & Trauma-Informed; Formal GROW Coaching Model; 1 group coaching sessions; Coach Community of Practice

      • Colleges are customizing a resource guide for entrepreneurs.

    6. Maria Suvansin will be in touch with Beth about the City of Concord supporting marketing.

    7. Jags will work with his network of cofounders to develop additional networks and suggested they might be a good audience for the conference. Beth suggested providing a link to registration and letting them know that there may be attendees who could be subcontractors.

  • 2022 Piranha Pool Pitch Competition (Mariam Worsham):

    1. DVC’s version of “Shark Tank” open to all DVC students

    2. Students form teams, come up with business ideas, develop business plans and pitch to judges for cash prizes.

    3. Biweekly expert workshops - ideation, legal, marketing, finance and presentation skills

    4. Concurrent with two classes - Business Management and Entrepreneurship. Students can get credit or participate independently.

    5. Benefits for Students:

      • Business planning experience

      • Partnering with business mentors

      • Networking with local entrepreneurs

      • Resume building

      • Presentation experience

      • Cash prizes

    6. Benefits for Mentors:

      • Work with future business leaders to set them up for success

      • Guide student teams through the process (business plan workbook provided)

      • Give back to DVC and the community

    7. Mentor Participation:

      • Work with a student team one hour per week from 9/28 to 11/30, in person or virtually

      • Mentor orientation is August 31st 6:30 – 7:30 pm via Zoom. Mentors are welcome to attend the bi-weekly workshops and in-person competitions. 1st round is November 18; 2nd December 2.

      • To participate as a mentor, please contact Ryan ( or Mariam (

  • Dining Etiquette and Networking Breakfast for Year Up Students (

    1. This year’s breakfast will be October 5th at 8:30 a.m.

    2. The cost is $15 per person, or you can donate to support those students who cannot pay.

    3. Students get practice conversing and dining with volunteers.

    4. Please let Mariam or Ryan know if you are interested in volunteering.

    5. Thanks to Jeanette for her donation and to Alex who will attend the breakfast.

  • Conference Update (Ryan):

    1. The website has been updated with headshots and bios of the speakers, a link to sponsors and registration page, link to buy tickets, and the final agenda.

    2. Help Needed:

      • Please buy your tickets - RSVPing to the calendar invite is not sufficient.

      • Share webpage and Eventbrite page

      • Connections and vendors

      • Table discussion facilitators

    3. Ryan reviewed the agenda:

      • Welcome: Coffee and pastries in the 8:00 am hour. Our two emcees will introduce Supervisor Diane Burgis. She will have ten minutes to speak and will introduce our keynote speaker.

      • Keynote by Chris Anderson, former editor-in-chief for Wired magazine and COO of Kitty Hawk.

      • Panel discussion with leaders of two local drone companies moderated by Greg Baer, Director of Airports for Contra Costa County.

      • Small group discussions about local aviation technology opportunities hosted by table facilitators.

      • Lunch catered by DVC’s Culinary Arts program. Ryan is working with Chef John on logistics and cost.

      • Keynote by Gregory Theyel, Executive Director of the Biomedical Manufacturing Network

      • Panel featuring a biotech consultant and a land use entrepreneur, Gordon Zagar, CEO of Zagar Consulting, and Martha Cosgrove, found of, moderated by Kristin Connelly, CEO of East Bay Leadership Council.

      • Small group discussions about local biotech and agtech opportunities hosted by table facilitators.

      • Reception: We will thank our sponsors, adjourn and move people towards a reception. May have alcohol or serve sparking water, Arnold Palmers, etc.

    4. Please let Ryan know if you are interested in leading the table discussions as facilitators. We want to disperse DVTI members amongst the tables to encourage networking and brainstorming. Thanks to Beth and Alex for volunteering.

    5. We may be able to get notetakers (maybe DVC students) to capture relationships or ideas that are formed.

    6. If there is a mask requirement, we may want to move off-site.

    7. Alex suggested a contingency plan for food and seating arrangements in case of a new COVID variant.

    8. Gordon suggested meeting with panelists and moderators to frame up questions beforehand so messaging is consistent before posting on LinkedIn accounts. Ryan will send suggestions for shareable text to post on the DVTI LinkedIn page before resharing.

    9. DVTI Conference Tasks:

      • Design Lead: Jags

        • Design/print handout – single sheet, 2-sided, on heavier paper

        • Design/print signage – Beth suggested using existing sandwich boards throughout the campus to direct people to the building.

        • Get advertising quotes

        • Design/print ads – Please recommend local printers who would print at cost or free in exchange for logo placement. Marie offered the Concord Chamber for printing.

      • Swag Lead – Jim Blair:

        • Select speaker gift – maybe DVC branded wine

        • Select participant gift – DVC branded pens, notepads on all tables

        • Jim will connect with Diablo Trophy on branding

      • A/V Lead – Jim Blair:

        • Need wireless mics and speakers

        • Reserve equipment with DVC A/V

        • Request staff to run A/V

      • Food Lead: Chef John

        • Coordinate morning, lunch and reception with DVC Culinary Arts

        • Beer and wine donations

      • Interior Lead: Jags

        • Coordinate room ambiance improvements

        • Layout of stage, tables, morning and lunch food tables and swag table

        • Coordinate greeter volunteers

        • Jim and Jags will coordinate layout and get the form to DVC facilities.

      • Budget:

  • Jim will look into lowering the food/beverage cost. May leave at $50/pp so snacks can be provided throughout the day. May need to do without gifts and swag.

  • AV may be no cost.

  • Thanks to our members for introducing sponsorships.

  • Thanks to Jeanette for her donation.

Adjourned: 4:00 pm.

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