Hawkefest is a full day anti-conference featuring the ecommerce industry’s best and brightest speakers and attendees.
Hawkefest brings together carefully selected ecommerce entrepreneurs and executives to enjoy a full day of peer collaboration and programming featuring industry thought leaders. Guests also enjoy immersive entertainment activations, gourmet cuisine, and top-shelf bar at the iconic Houdini Estate in the Hollywood Hills.
Chief Media Officer/VaynerMedia
Prior to becoming the Chief Media Officer of VaynerMedia, Jeff Nicholson spent the early part of his career running ads, building businesses, facilitating acquisition and sale of multiple companies, and driving marketing performance and strategy for the fortune 500’s. In his role as Chief Media officer he is currently tasked with overseeing and developing global media investments, as well as, planning, analyzing and providing ad tech services across the VaynerX Portfolio. In this role over the past four years he has had the privilege of working with and directly influencing the growth of some of the largest and most respected brands in the World.
In addition to his current role as CMO, Jefrey also serves as the Chief Executive officer of Tracer Labs, which he built and developed with his Co-Founder Leighton Welch. Tracer is a revolutionary marketing data aggregation and reporting platform incubated under the Vayner X platform.
Since his graduation from Babson College, Jeff has maintained a fervor for education, coaching and mentoring young professionals. After regularly spending time on the Babson campus teaching and advising on curriculum, Jeff launched Nicholnotes in 2018. Nicholnotes serves as a true intersection of career and passion, as an education company focused on delivering relevant and current curriculum for business students with a focus on data, digital and platform tools.
Jeffrey sits on the board of Pinterest, Hurricane Group, Captify and Goodlife Clothing. He regularly speaks at international industry events, consults and speaks to private corporate companies and teaches at universities including Babson College, NYU Stern School of Business, University of Virginia and Miami Ad School.
Head of Operations/Community.com
Zenetta is a South African born, Australian citizen with 10 years experience in the technology sector.
Today she invests for Mucker Capital, a seed and pre-seed fund based in Santa Monica focusing on software and Internet startups outside Silicon Valley, investing across the United States and Canada. She also runs Operations for Community.com – a new LA start up designed to enable personal conversations at scale.
She is a former Corporate VC, the founder of Fresh BnB, has consulted on Fortune 100 M&A transactions and currently advises the boards of two LA based start ups. Educated at the University of Sydney and Harvard, Zenetta brings a variety and breadth of operational discipline to early stage companies.
Founding Partner/ Vice Ventures
Catharine Dockery is the founder of Vice Ventures, a venture fund investing in early-stage vice companies. Catharine has long had a passion for vice investing, personally being involved in the seed round of Bev, a DTC canned rose company. While interviewing with traditional consumer venture firms, she continually brushed against vice clauses in investment pitches, with this friction culminating in the idea for Vice Ventures. Catharine was the president of her class at NYU’s Gallatin School of Individualized Study, where she studied a self-directed major on the intersection of neuroscience and finance.
Michael is passionate about working with ultra-curious and deeply convicted entrepreneurs building the products and brands of the future in areas including next-generation commerce, financial services, and vertical SaaS.
Michael joined Upfront in 2015 and is a proud supporter of the Southern California technology ecosystem, working closely with standout local companies including Ring, GOAT, Bird, CloudVirga, ZestFinance, Chownow, and DAILYLOOK. Previously, Michael was an Editor at Pandodaily and was on the founding team at WorldVest, a Los Angeles-based boutique merchant bank.
Michael holds a BS in Chemical Engineering from the University of California, Santa Barbara.
VP of Marketing/Hawke Media
CEO and Board Member/True Religion
Chelsea A. Grayson the CEO and a board member of True Religion. She is also a member of the board of directors of Vireo Health (CSE: VREO), a leading multi-state cannabis company, where she chairs the Nominating & Corporate Governance Committee and is a member of the Audit Committee. She is a former member of the board of directors of Delta Dental, where she was a member of the Nominating & Corporate Governance Committee. Prior to taking on the CEO role with True Religion, she chaired theAudit Committee for the True Religion board of directors. Previously, she was the CEO and a board member of American Apparel (NYSE MKT: APP). Before that, Ms. Grayson was the General Counsel, Chief Administrative Officer and Executive Vice President of American Apparel. Prior to joining American Apparel, she was a partner in the M&A and corporate governance practice groups of JonesDay and Loeb & Loeb.
VP/ Global Strategic Partnerships for Klaviyo
Rich Gardner is VP, Global Strategic Partnerships for Klaviyo, the leading SaaS platform for intelligent customer segmentation, dynamic communication, and dramatic revenue growth.
For 15 years, Rich has built and led high-performing global sales and business development teams at hypergrowth tech and tech-enabled services businesses. At Klaviyo, Rich is responsible for identifying and cultivating best-in-class partners in the ecommerce ecosystem to help brands grow faster. Prior to these executive roles, Rich practiced law in Washington, DC, and worked as a political operative.
Rich holds a J.D. from the UVA Law School and his A.B. at Harvard College. He lives in Boston with his husband, Darrell, and basset hound, Harvey. And his lucky number, apparently, is three: he has attended three Patriots Super Bowls (2-1 record), three Star Trek Conventions (only 1 in uniform), and three U-2 concerts.
John Tedesco is the CEO of Drip, a first-of-its-kind Ecommerce CRM helping online brands compete and thrive by using real-life consumer behavior data to deliver personalized, multichannel, scalable marketing journeys. Before taking this trip toward better ecommerce experiences for all, John helped companies like Leadpages and SportsEngine flourish. He’s also advising startup Nomics and sitting on the board for When I Work.
John’s passion for human connections between online brands and their customers is the thread pulling every single strategy tightly together, and his leadership and ecommerce prowess has made dreams into realities for Drip, its users, and their customers. For more than 2 years, John has been immersing himself in customer problems. With a deeper appreciation, he’s been able to guide the teams at Drip to build the best product possible to solve those problems and turn impersonal ecommerce transactions into warm, memorable experiences that help any ecommerce store stand out and thrive.
Drip ECRM’s disruption of ecommerce isn’t going unnoticed—it’s recently been awarded spots in the Top 50 Fastest Growing Products and Top 50 Best Products for Marketers of 2019 by G2 Crowd.
Managing Partner and Co-Founder/Hawke Ventures
Drew Leahy is Managing Partner and co-founder of Hawke Ventures, an early stage consumer and B2B marketing technology fund. He is also the Entrepreneur-in-Residence at Hawke Media. Prior to Hawke, Leahy was Chief Marketing Officer and co-founder of SnapSuits.com, a tech-forward men’s fashion e-retailer with over $2M+ in revenue. He leveraged his seasoned product team, based in Colombia, South America, achieving an 8x ROI with technology-enabled marketing strategies.
Drew was also Entrepreneur-in-Residence at memBrain in Los Angeles, making investments with tech and entertainment angel investors Ken Hertz and Liz Heller.
Founder and CEO/Brandable
Mr. Oliver Bogner is a serial entrepreneur and the Founder and CEO of Brandable, Inc. Oliver has led Brandable from a concept to a 80+ person operation with significant revenue at A+ retailers. He has created exclusive programs with the two largest retailers in America: Target and Walmart. One of his brands, Craft City, launched exclusively at Target outperformed its forecast by 6x, and is now the fastest growing kids crafting brand in America, expanding to over 20 SKUs.
He spent the last 8 years creating and executive producing hit television series like TLC’s My Five Wives, Lifetime’s Kim Of Queens, and worked as a creative executive at companies behind hit series like MTV’s Catfish, Food Network’s Guy’s Grocery Games, and CBS’s Undercover Boss. In November 2015, he sold his television production business to Discovery Communications / All3Media.
Oliver has made a name for himself — he has been profiled by the Los Angeles Times, Forbes Magazine, Variety, USA Today, Elite Daily, OC Register and has been listed twice in Forbes Magazine on the “30 Under 30 List”
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