DC Startup Week 2020 DC Startup Week 2020
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1 Million Cups

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Christine Davies
Poligage, Founder and CEO

Poligage is the world’s first online marketplace for policy and government affairs advisory services, making these business-critical services accessible and flexible through our pay-as-you-go model connecting customers to our curated experts network.

Christine has built her 20+ year career around the intersections of public policy and business, working in various capacities with government leaders, trade associations, private companies, and non-profits to advance public policy outcomes. Christine has served as Vice President for Partnerships at the Asia Society, a global organization devoted to increasing understanding between the East and West, as well as a Business Development Manager for the Public Sector Services division at Microsoft. Earlier in her career, Christine served at the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative and U.S. Department of State under the leadership of Robert B. Zoellick, where she worked on a variety of global economic and development issues, and as the International Trade Specialist at the American Chamber of Commerce in Thailand. Christine earned her MBA from the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business.

Julie Melnick
SkySquad, Founder

Julie is the founder of SkySquad, an airport concierge service which provides a helping hand to travelers from car door to plane door. An entrepreneur at heart, Julie is passionate about making travel a more enjoyable experience. Her 20 years of career experience include product development, public relations, and marketing. Previously, she founded and developed Nanny in the Clouds, which was recognized as one of Entrepreneur Magazine’s 100 Brilliant Ideas of 2012. She also co-founded Standout Public Relations; a PR firm with a focus on hospitality based in Washington DC. Previously, she served as the Marketing Director for Coldwell Banker Orange County, CA where she assisted in the rollout of their tech products. She resides in Bethesda with her husband, son, daughter, and dog.

Nick Bonaventure
Aronson LLC

1 Million Cups (1MC) is a simple way to engage entrepreneurs in communities around the world. The 1MC program offers local entrepreneurs an opportunity to present their startups to a diverse audience of mentors, advisors, and entrepreneurs.
Presenters prepare an educational presentation and engage in feedback and questioning after they present. Entrepreneurs gain insight into possible ways they can improve their businesses, gather real-time feedback, connect with a community that truly cares about their progress, and walk away feeling like they have advanced their business.