Each semester we provide our Lab team experienced, successful, insightful and committed entrepreneurs from the Austin startup community. Each team must have one or more mentors from this roster; mentors and teams are matched by mutual interest early in the semester. These mentors provide ongoing practical advice and help connect teams to relevant networks of outside resources. Mentors are invited to all class sessions and generally meet weekly with their teams. They are an especially valuable asset of the Longhorn Startup program.

our mentorsmeet the talent

Aaron Benz

Aaron is a highly competitive and motivated result-driven leader with a passion for creative-based solutions to challenging problems. He creates and lives in an atmosphere that demands effort, innovation, and excitement. Inspired by new and untapped technologies, he enjoys the pleasure of mixing Big Data systems with Python/R stats and some sweet visualization… he also frequently dabbles with and hacks his Raspberry Pi. 

A pure mathematician by training, Aaron received Academic-All America and All America awards as a lacrosse goalie at Eastern University. He was then a Sr. Data Scientist at Accenture where he built and executed big data analytics applications primarily across health, call center, and big oil enterprises. He has been a speaker at several conferences including Strata-Hadoop World and the Global Big Data Conference. 

Aaron is currently the CEO and Co-Founder of Degree Analytics where he focuses on helping Universities graduate more students by uniquely leveraging IoT data.

Alex Zeig

Alex has been recognized as a Young Leader by multiple organizations in various industries from technology to healthcare. He sits on the authoring committee for multiple tele-health guidelines and has been asked to present on various technology and healthcare topics. He is open to discussing challenges and opportunities within the healthcare technology intersection, and has been vocal on best practices and implementation guidelines.

Daniel Senyard

Serial entrepreneur, Capital Factory Mentor, and Co-Founder and CEO at Shep. 2017 Business Travel Network “Innovator You Need to Know.”

James Glancy

When I was a kid I lived in Homerville, Ohio. I didn’t have any siblings to play with, all I had was my imagination and four cows. I created everything from new board games to building a drum set out of pots and pans, complete with wooden spoons as drumsticks for full effect. Turns out this time in my life would help shape the rest of my career.
Fast forward twenty years and nothing’s changed except the size and scope of the things I imagine and electricity I bring to every endeavor. My passion is inventing new, more powerful, and profitable solutions to every type of problem I can get my hands on. There is something exhilarating about finding a solution, which undoubtedly stems from all the problems I created playing during childhood.
I’ve been an entrepreneur since I was born. When I was in fourth grade we had a yearly magazine drive at school, whoever sold the most magazines got to be principal for a day. I wanted to win but the problem was that I was competing against four hundred other students. I determined that since a Forbes magazine subscription was the most expensive–selling Forbes would be my sole focus. Who reads Forbes? Wealthy people. So I went to the wealthiest neighborhoods in town and strictly sold there to increase the probability of selling more and winning. Turns out rich people read Forbes and I’m a great principal.
I have worn many different hats in my career– founder, fundraiser, pitchman, financial modeler, ideation, business development, salesman, and marketer to name a few. As a result I can navigate complex challenges, and possess a unique ability to manage incredibly complex projects efficiently.
I’d love to connect with you about tech startups, fundraising, or anything else.

Jesse Vickey

Jesse started Cap & Compass in 2001, a company that helps college graduates with the life skills need after school. In 2014, he started Dinner Elf, an affordable, in-home cooking service serving busy families and friends in seasons of need. He currently runs both businesses and a third one called “raising two kids.” He’s also a big fan of the Crimson Tide.

Joe Shiraz

Entrepreneur with experience in every facet of a small business. Acquired multiple small businesses and helped create a team and processes to increase revenues and create profitability.
Specialties: marketing, operational processes development, small business start-up

Jonathan Spillman

Jonathan has built his career in the tech industry, from hardware to software to startups. He currently oversees day-to-day business operations at Pilosa, including all finance, legal and HR functions. Jonathan previously worked in operational and finance roles at companies that include a Fortune 100 industry leader in computer networking (Cisco), one of the largest payment processors in the world (Elavon), and a high-growth enterprise SaaS startup (Umbel). Jonathan has an undergraduate degree from Georgia Tech, where he competed as a scholarship track & field athlete, and an MBA from the University of Texas.

Joseph Kelly

Joseph Kelly is a technology entrepreneur and co-founder of Unchained Capital, a financial services company that provides loans for crypto collateral. Prior to founding Unchained, Joe was a co-founder of Infochimps (acquired by CSC in 2013). At Infochimps he was responsible for operations, among other roles, and led the company through its pivot from a data marketplace to an enterprise software platform which powered big data applications inside dozens of Fortune 500 companies.
Joe’s interest in technology and finance helped to stoke his passion for Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies. He enjoys reading, writing, and flying his plane.

Kelsi Kamin

Kelsi is a Venture Associate at Capital Factory, where she brings companies into the Accelerator program and sources investments for the fund. Previously she worked at Crunchbase and Salesforce. While a student at UT Austin, Kelsi built campus-wide entrepreneurship programs as VP for Longhorn Entrepreneurship Agency and Analyst for Genesis Program, the university’s first student-run venture fund.

Nelson Tao

Experienced Tech Founder with a demonstrated history of working in the consumer services industry. Skilled in Management, Customer Service, Sales Processes, Direct Sales, and Time Management. Strong business development professional with a Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) focused in Economics from The University of Texas at Austin.

Nick Spiller

A veteran of the Austin startup community, Nick is focused on getting startups in Texas funded. He started in startups at The University of Texas at Austin where he founded the Longhorn Entrepreneurship Agency. Today he still volunteers as an Alumni Partner supporting capital campaigns for the Genesis Program, which allows student investors to fund student entrepreneurs.

At Capital Factory, Nick is focused on creating a surplus of startup capital in Texas. He hosts investors for startup meetings at Capital Factory, works with investors in traditional industries learn technology investing and crafts mass investor communications for Capital Factory’s investor community.

Scott Evans

I create great products, services and education programs – typically based on new or emerging materials technology. This spans creating technology, patents, products and business organizations with exceptional innovation capabilities. I have worked with small and large firms in several countries to improve the value of existing technology, to create the strategy for building out technology assets and to establish partnerships with companies, universities and government agencies.

I have hands-on experience with manufacturing from heavy industry to semiconductor fabrication. I co-founded a materials and manufacturing company based on my doctoral research and helped to develop technology commercialization programs at UT as a researcher, lecturer and program director.