Finding Focus, Developing Brands, and Geeking Out at Hub Berkeley

In case you didn’t notice, we’re trying something a little different with our weekly Hub announcement e-mails. In the name of consolidation, Meredith (our beautiful and charming community engagement specialist here at the Hub) will be kicking off Mondays with a blog round-up of all things Hub: upcoming events, new members, important announcements.

I highly recommend you schedule in 2 minutes every Monday late afternoon to read this post. As the title indicates, there’s lots of juicy (some might even say sexy) information below….

Upcoming Events**

This week:

West Coast Village Capital Info Session

Tuesday, January 5, 6pm, Good Capital SF Offices, 2601 Mission St., Suite 400, San Francisco

(Open to the public) Inspired by the village bank model used in microfinance throughout the world, Village Capital is an innovative investment model built on the hypothesis that entrepreneurs, working intimately together and providing peer support to one another, will be able to efficiently and wisely allocate investment to one another’s companies.  West Coast Village Capital (WCVC) is a social venture program run by First Light Ventures and hosted at the Hub that brings entrepreneurs together to learn from and support each other’s social enterprises.  This information session will give  address questions on the program and the application process.  More information is available “Member News” (below) and at

Sexy Salad Day

Wednesday, January 6, 12pm, Hubble Meeting Room, Hub Berkeley

(Members and members’ invited friends only)  (Members and members’ invited friends only)  Sexy Salad is officially a Hub tradition every Wednesday!  Join us to relax, eat, chat, and get to know your fellow Hub members.  Bring an ingredient and learn how tasty collaboration can be.  Need ideas?  How about spinach, tomatoes, mushrooms, artichoke hearts, almonds, apples, or your favorite salad dressing.  Bring bread or spread or pasta or potato salad.  Bring something you cooked and prepped or bought at the market on the way to work.  Most importantly, bring yourself!  Your mission: to prove that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.  And best of all, no need to RSVP!

Free Coaching Consultations with Elizabeth Ferguson, Ph. D.

Wednesday, January 6, 1:30-5pm, Hubble Meeting Room, Hub Berkeley

(Members only)  These free, half-hour consultations offer coaching for any professional or personal issue you would like to bring to the session.  For more information, click here.  RSVP required to to book a 30-minute slot.

Hub Community Meeting and Feedback Forum

Wednesday, January 6, 5-6:30pm, Hubble Meeting Room, Hub Berkeley

(Members only)  We’re creating a monthly dialogue for Members and Hosts to brainstorm ideas for how The Hub can better support value exchange and community interaction between us all. We want to invite any and all Members interested in making The Hub a more useful and meaningful habitat for work and play. The Hub will have wine available for all participants.

This week’s topic:  Building the Berkeley Community in 2010.   We’re figuring out how to grow in our first full year in existence.  We’d love your help and ideas.  We’ll discuss our current methods for growing the community and would like your feedback in making the Hub network thrive in the next year.  RSVP to

Investors’ Circle Workshop

Wednesday, January 6, 6:30pm, Hub Berkeley

(Open to the public)  Are you a for-profit social entrepreneur looking for capital?  Learn about raising funds at the Investors’ Circle workshop.

This workshop is open to those seeking funding for early-stage for-profit social enterprises.  Investors’ Circle representatives will walk through IC’s funding criteria, process and venture fair opportunity.  The workshop will also feature a recently funded IC company and an IC angel investor member.  This program will be especially useful for companies that are interested in applying for the IC 2010 Spring Conference & Venture Fair.  The deadline for applications is January 13, 2010.  RSVP at

POSTPONED: Building Change: A Breakfast Conversation with Elizabeth Hausler

Due to changes in Elizabeth’s travel schedule, we’ve had to postpone this event until the morning of January 13.  Please scroll down for details.

Engaging the Next Generation in Social Entrepreneurship:

A discussion with Amy Wilson, director of Askoka’s new local Youth Venture program.
Thursday, January 7, 12pm-1pm, Hubble Meeting Room, Hub Berkeley

(Members only)  Roughly one-third of all Ashoka fellows work with youth.  Extensive interviews with these fellows yielded the discovery that the two most important skills young folks will need in order to succeed in the future are the ability to practice active empathy, and the ability to be changemakers.  In 1996, Ashoka created Youth Venture to support the development of these two core skills, and to engage the next generation in the powerful movement of social entrepreneurship.  Since 1996, Youth Venture has launched over 3,000 youth-led teams in over 20 countries.  What have we discovered in this process?  And what are we planning for the local area?  Come to learn, share your experiences, and get involved.  RSVP to

Next Week:

Hub Communications Lab: Brand Development Workshop with Kelli Peterson

Tuesday, January 12, 12pm-1:30pm, Hubble Meeting Room, Hub Berkeley

(Members Only) This is a follow up to the first worksession held in October by brand strategist and Hub member Kelli Peterson.  Participants who sign-up on a limited, first-come, first-serve basis will have an opportunity to work through specific branding questions.  Space is limited to 6 participants who should provide their situational questions when they RSVP.  Note that the worksession will start promptly at 12pm and no one will be admitted late.

Kelli, a VP at Cheskin consulting, has over 17 years experience in brand development and marketing for both for-profits, such as Microsoft, T-Mobile and the Red Bull, and international NGOs and non-profits, such as the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria and the United Nations Foundation.  What you should expect – 90 minutes of active work time.  We will use the group environment to workshop each participant’s primary question.  Please RSVP to with your name, organization and specific question(s).

Building Change: A Breakfast Conversation with Elizabeth Hausler

Wednesday, January 13, 9am, Hubble Meeting Room, Hub Berkeley

(Members and their invited guests only) Elizabeth Hausler is a mason, engineer, environmental scientist, and founder of BuildChange, an international non-profit social enterprise.  BuildChange designs earthquake-resistant houses in developing countries and trains builders, homeowners, engineers, and government officials to build them.  In the last 5 years, BuildChange has built 5,352 better houses, taught 360 better builders, and trained 585 local engineers in China and Indonesia to protect lives in the event of an earthquake.  Elizabeth, an Echoing Green and Draper Richards fellow, Fulbright Scholar, and abcNews World News Tonight Person of the Week, will come talk to Hub members about BuildChange’s work, methodology, and the success factors behind its ability to achieve success quickly in the communities it enters.  Join us for bagels, juice, and a guaranteed interesting start to your day!  RSVP to

Tech Office Hours with Zach Berke of Exygy

Wednesday, January 13, Hubble Meeting Room, Hub Berkeley

(Members Only) Does technology — the web, mobile, media — play a key role in your organization or vision?  Exygy is a custom software development shop that works with social entrepreneurs and organizations like SoCap and the Skoll Foundation.  Specialists on the web and on mobile devices, the geeks and artists at Exygy are a great resource that The Hub is very excited to offer to its membership.  30 minute slots are available for reservation with Exygy’s Founder Zach Berke from 12-5, and some other folks from the Exygy team will be available throughout the day to talk shop with you or answer questions.

Note: Exygy won’t be able to fix your laptop or set up your Blackberry.  Rather, if you want to talk big picture tech, to shape vision, or to understand how better to use web and mobile for your organization then please come and geek out with us!  Request a slot by writing

Sexy Salad Day

Wednesday, January 13, 12pm, Hubble Meeting Room, Hub Berkeley

(Members and members’ invited friends only)  See above for description.

Finding Focus, Patience, and Peace Through Meditation

Thursday, January 14, 12pm-1pm, Hubble Meeting Room, Hub Berkeley

(Members Only) This workshop will introduce mindfulness meditation, its uses and benefits. We will spend some time discussing how meditation can improve our lives at home and at work. This will be a hands on experiential workshop and we will spend a good portion of the hour practicing techniques to reduce stress and calm the mind. There will also be several exercises that address two common challenges in the workplace – focus and patience. You will walk away from this workshop with several practical tools for reducing stress, and increasing focus and patience. Hope to see you there!

Speaker Bio: Vlad Moskovski is a certified NLP practitioner and meditation instructor. His teaching approach is founded on the philosophy that meditation should be integrated into people’s daily lives and the techniques be simple and accessible to all. Using metaphors and story- telling, Vlad is able to share his knowledge in a fun and interactive fashion. He is focused on bringing contemplative practices such as yoga and meditation to schools, corporations, and health care fields.


Legal Huddle: Negotiating Equity Investments Without Giving It All Away

Thursday, January 14, 6pm-8:30pm, Hub Berkeley

(Open to the Public) Lots of business advice focuses on how startups can secure investments from angels or VC firms.  Rarely is the flip side discussed: that equity investments always come at a price.  In their eagerness to secure capital early on, many young companies think only about what they’re receiving and not what they’re giving away when they negotiate their terms of investment.  As a result, some companies lose more profits or control than they realize when they sign on the dotted line.  For this month’s Hanson Bridgett Legal Huddle, come hear Arman Javid, attorney at Hanson Bridgett and Craig Flax, Founder and CEO of Good Things Green and the former EVP of Marketing at Flax Art & Design, speak about how to negotiate term sheets for convertible notes and equity investments.  They’ll share their experiences and legal expertise with you so you know what to look for, what to look out for, and how to get investments without giving away the farm.  RSVP at

Brown Bag Lunch with Barbara Max Hubbard

Friday, January 15, 12pm-1pm, Hubble Meeting Room, Hub Berkeley

(Members Only) Barbara Marx Hubbard is founder of The Foundation for Conscious Evolution (FCE). Her DVD series Humanity Ascending is carrying her message of hope worldwide in many languages.  As futurist, educator, author and speaker in the emerging field of conscious evolution, social innovation has been Barbara’s whole life’s work. Her emphasis has been on offering longer-range visions of a positive future, equal to our self, social and scientific/technological potential. Currently Barbara is working with a small initial team at FCE on creating new environments and processes for social synergy and connectivity–synergistic convergence–in the context of breakthroughs and solutions now emerging in every field, including a Social Synergy Platform, to scan for, map, connect and communicate what is working in the world to mobilize for effective action.  Join her in discussion during an intimate lunch for Hub members.  RSVP to

Hub News

New Members

Please help us welcome our new members:

Yoni Landau, Cooperative Food Empowerment Directive
Terry Patten, Softlanding Enterprises
Michael Straus, Straus Communications

Member News

Entrepreneur Commons Academy Launches

We are happy to announce that Entrepreneur Commons, founded by Hub member Marc Dangeard, has launched its Entrepreneur Commons Academy, an online resource forentrepreneurs to share their knowledge.  The launch was made official in a blog post on the National Startup blog here.

The Entrepreneur Commons (Entreco for short) Academy is a way to monetize expertise. Unlike blogs where only a few of the top guys make money from advertising, the idea with this new service is to offer experts a venue to share their knowledge through live online events. So if you have an area of expertise, it would be great to have you come and teach a live session. And if you know people who could be interested in joining, please forward them the info.

The first event will be on 1/7/10 for entrepreneurs interested in starting or moving their business to Silicon Valley. We will go over the various issues you will have to face (visa, culture, business, etc…) and traps that you will have to avoid. You can see what others are saying about the event here.  To contact Entrepreneur Commons with ideas or for more information, click here.

Goodbye, Gaurav!

Beloved Hub member Gaurav Mathur is taking a new job that, on the upside, is providing for his family and giving him a greater ability to work on his new company that builds educational games for children.  On the downside, it means he will no longer be working at Hub Berkeley during the week.  Gaurav will still be a Hub member, but since he’ll no longer be working alongside us, we’re going out for a goodbye brunch for him on Tuesday, January 5 at 11:30am.  Come by Hub Berkeley then or shoot him an e-mail if you want to say goodbye and good luck.

West Coast Village Capital Accepting Applications

West Coast Village Capital is seeking social entrepreneurs with bright ideas and sustainable business models.

West Coast Village Capital (WCVC) is a social venture program that brings entrepreneurs together to learn from and support each other’s social enterprises.  Over the course of 12 weeks, up to 30 social entrepreneurs will work together in groups of five to share their knowledge, strengthen their models, and build their businesses.  Additionally, WCVC puts the investment decisions in the hands of entrepreneurs themselves.  First Light Ventures will make $25,000 and $75,000 investments in the 5-10 companies jointly identified as most ready for seed capital.

First Light Ventures is a catalyst fund that promotes social impact through investment and infrastructure development.  First Light is testing the Village Capital model through four distinct pilot programs: West Coast Village Capital (San Francisco Bay Area, California); Unreasonable Village Capital (Boulder, Colorado); Idea Village Capital (New Orleans, Louisiana); and Dasra Village Capital (Mumbai, India).  WCVC will be hosted at The Hub in the Bay Area, which supports WCVC with marketing, meeting space, and access to its vibrant community of entrepreneurs, creative professionals and community leaders.

If you have a business idea to help improve the world, WCVC wants to hear about it.  The program is based in the Bay Area and will run January 19 through April 14, 2010.  Applications are due by January 7, 2010.  A public information session will take place the evening of January 5 at 6pm at Good Capital’s San Francisco offices (2601 Mission St., Suite 400, San Francisco).  More information is available at

**Events in red are Hub-produced events.  Events in black or gray are member-produced.

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