Meet the 2019 PitcHER Judges

Meet the 2019 PitcHER Judges

Meet the judges for the 2019 PitcHER™ contest! This competition celebrates female entrepreneurs from all industries who are leading early stage technology startups. The finalists will join us at the 2019 Grace Hopper Celebration (GHC 19) on October 2 to compete for a total of $100,000 in prize money, split among the top three finalists and an Audience Favorite.

Learn more about the judges who will assess the innovation and impact of these entrepreneurs’ startups. PitcHER™ is powered by our sponsors: 

Premier Event
American Family Insurance Cloud Native Computing Foundation
Grasshopper Bank Course Hero
Hertz Ford Motor Company
ServiceTitan  GSV Summit
WePay Viacom

In-Person PitcHER Judges

Alejandra Y. Castillo
Alejandra serves as the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of YWCA USA and its network of 210 associations, serving 2.2. million women and girls around the country in 46 states and the District of Columbia. In 2014, Alejandra was appointed by the Obama Administration to serve as the national director of the Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA), becoming the first Hispanic-American woman to lead the agency

Shakeia Kegler
Shakeia is the Founder of GovLia. Since launching her startup, she has won first place at the 2018 PitcHER competition, Vetprenuer competition, and PS27’s competition. She has also participated in Y-Combinator Startup School, Black Tech Week VC in Residence Program, CIC Military Cohort, and The Venture Mentoring Team mentee program.

Kathrina Manalac
Kat was Chief of Staff to Alexis Ohanian, Co-founder of Reddit, before joining YC as its Director of Outreach. Prior to that, Kat was at WIRED Magazine where she managed brand and strategy. Kat has a bachelor’s degree in Communications from Northwestern University.

Christie Pitts
Christie is a General Partner of Backstage Capital and CEO of Backstage Studio. She is responsible for guiding her crew to ensure Backstage runs smoothly towards its mission as well as joining Managing Partner, Arlan Hamilton, in making investment decisions (aka signing Headliners!).

We’d also like to thank our Pitch Coach for helping our finalists perfect their elevator pitch, as well as our host for the PitcHER competition at GHC 19.

Pitch Coach

Brandon Andrews
Brandon is the Co-founder of Gauge, an AI-driven mobile market research platform connecting brands to consumers and influencers to identify opportunities and avoid mistakes. As Senior Consultant at Values Partnerships, he leads the company’s work on technology and entrepreneurship. Committed to bringing resources to diverse entrepreneurs, he started The Investment event series to educate entrepreneurs and investors of color


Mitali Chakraborty
Mitali is the CEO of Go Left Productions. She is a Freelance Producer, Creative Strategist, and Business Development Consultant, and is currently working as the Interim Vice President of Partnerships at

Thank You to Our Contributing Allies

digitalundivided Founder Gym 

Stay tuned to find out who our PitcHER Closing Keynote speaker will be!

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