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Tipping Points: When to Raise, Scale, or Rebuild

This meetup is going to cover topics like:

  • Differentiating between interest (getting press) and traction (blowing up)
  • Running tests that help you find product/market fit
  • When to raise versus continue bootstrapping
  • How to improve performance of prototypes vs. invest in rebuilding the code base

RSVP's are open!


We'll grab beers at the Hyatt Bar & Lounge afterward.


Confirmed Speakers

We'll have multiple startups presenting what they've learned when their businesses reached major milestones and decision points.

Danny Boice, Co-Founder of Speek, will discuss how he decided his company had found product/market fit, and how the company decided to open their product to the public.

Ilene Miller and Lisa Friedlander, Co-Founders of Activity Rocket, will talk about finding the tipping point of scale, and how they know they're ready to expand their product to new cities.

Barg Upender, Founder of Mobomo & HitchRides, will discuss his tipping points after a career as a serial entrepreneur.

Steve Kaplan and Adam Young, Attorneys at Pillsbury, will be back to talk about the legal side of the types of investments you should consider as you move toward success.

... plus, we will hear from Pete Oliver-Krueger who will facilitate a short session on using the power of our community to help someone "tip." Bring your problems; your peers will have a solution.

Speaker Bios

Danny Boice is currently the co-founder of Speek running all things product. Danny previously served as the Executive Director, New Media for The College Board. The College Board serves seven million students and their parents, 23,000 high schools, and 3,800 colleges through major programs and services in college readiness, college admission, guidance, assessment, financial aid, enrollment, and teaching and learning. Among its best-known programs are the SAT®, the PSAT/NMSQT® and the Advanced Placement Program® (AP®).Danny’s responsibilities include driving technology innovation in the arena’s of web, mobile, social and other cutting edge digital domains across all of these programs and constituents.

Prior to The College Board Danny served as the Chief Technology Officer for Speek where he lead the development of their cloud-based product while establishing and growing their Open API / Developer Community. He also served as Vice President at Pantheon leading several high visibility web and mobile product development projects for Fortune 500 clients. Boice joined Pantheon in 2006 when they acquired Jaxara – a company he founded in 2002.

Danny attended Harvard University as well as completing advanced studies at MIT and is an active angel investor, advisor and board director to several technology start-ups.

Ilene Penn Miller is a Co-Founder of Activity Rocket ( – a first of its kind website that connects busy parents with enrichment camps and activities for children ages 0-18 in the DC metro area. Previously, Miller served as the Executive Director of a national cancer foundation in NYC; advised non-profits on fundraising and programming; and lobbied for a prominent national lobbying/PR firm in Washington, DC. Miller received a LLM from Georgetown University, a JD from Catholic University and a BS in Communications (magna cum laude) from Boston University.  Ilene is also the Co-founder of Hope for Hypothalamic Hamartomas ( - a voluntary run 501c3 organization to provide information, advocacy, support and research to HH patients, caregivers and health professionals.  Miller, a mother of two active boys, resides in Bethesda, MD with her husband, Craig.

Lisa Friedlander is a Co-Founder of Activity Rocket ( – a first of its kind website that connects busy parents with enrichment camps and activities for children ages 0-18 in the DC metro area. A DC Metro area native, Lisa started her career as a telecommunications attorney after graduating from American University Washington College of Law (summa cum laude) and The University of Pennsylvania (BA Economics). She became VP/GC of a satellite telecommunications company where she advised on telecom, corporate, employment, and government contracts law. Lisa has also consulted small to medium sized businesses on how to create a legal framework for their entities, advising on various matters, while in early stage growth. Lisa has also volunteered for, founded, and ran charity organizations. Heartsongs Fund, which raises money for Children's National Medical Center, is in its 11th year of operation. Lisa lives in Bethesda with her husband Scott and her three children Jaclyn, Cole & Camryn.


Barg Upender is a serial entrepreneur and technologist with twenty years of commercial software product development experience. He specializes in bringing ideas to commercial marketplace. Barg is actively involved in all projects to provide expert insight and quality oversight. Prior to co-founding Intridea, Barg was the President of Concentric Methods, an Agile Software Development company. Barg is also a founding member of NeoDiagnostix Inc, a biomarker-based cancer diagnostic company. Barg graduated from Cornell University with Masters in Electrical Engineering.

Pete Oliver-Krueger is the Founder of the startup MillionMunkeys, and a DC-area Product Management Consultant.  He has 15-year history managing product rollouts for companies like TD Ameritrade, DC Metro (WMATA), the U.S. Air Force, and the American Institute for Research, using Lean Startup and Agile processes with enterprise organizations together with a strong emphasis on Usability.  He's a mentor with the Lean Startup Machine in DC and Philadelphia, and holds a Bachelor's Degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University.

Steve Kaplan is a Senior Associate in Pillsbury's Corporate & Securities - Technology group. Mr. Kaplan practices in the areas of venture capital and private equity, mergers and acquisitions and other commercial transactions. Mr. Kaplan’s practice focuses on a wide range of industry sectors including, software, web-based companies, life sciences, information technology and government contractors. Mr. Kaplan has represented technology and other emerging growth companies at all stages and has represented both companies and investors in numerous seed, angel, early, and expansion round financings.

Mr. Kaplan’s mergers and acquisitions experience includes representation of buyers and sellers in complex transactions with various structures across many industries. Mr. Kaplan also counsels companies and investors in capital formation, corporate governance, employment and compensation matters, transfers of technology and shareholder issues.

Mr. Kaplan is the Chair of the Northern Virginia Technology Council's Entrepreneur Education Committee and has served as an interviewer for the Washington Area Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Awards.

Adam Young is an Associate in Pillsbury's Corporate & Securities group, concentrating in general corporate and securities matters affecting public and private entities including public offerings, venture capital and private equity financings, mergers and acquisitions and general business transactions. Prior to joining Pillsbury, Mr. Young worked at Schulte Roth & Zabel LLP in New York City as an associate in the Business Transactions group, concentrating in counseling private equity funds and private companies with corporate transactions and general business matters.

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  • Mark M.

    Great information and great networking as always.

    October 18, 2012

  • Johannes T.

    Kudos to all speakers: Authentic stories and thus real advice!

    October 17, 2012

  • Lisa f.

    Really looking forward to tomorrow night! Thanks DC Lean Startup

    October 15, 2012

  • A former member
    A former member

    Hello DCLSC, we're teaching a LEAN 101 class on Tuesday, October 2nd 7pm - 8:30pm It's an excellent introduction into customer development. Topics covered: Myths around Lean Startup, hypothesis testing, questioning assumptions, getting out the building, and more.

    September 27, 2012

    • Jack A.

      How was the class ?

      October 15, 2012

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