Presented by CoSupport & the Urban Hive

A one-day 
no bullshit 
conference for 
leaders, founders, and entrepreneurs

No VC vultures, no over the ear mics, no velvet slippered gurus, no paid speakers, no panels, no self-promoting audience Q&A, no conference t-shirts, no egos.


April 21, 2018 in Sacramento, CA

Should You Go?
If you’re an entrepreneur, if you’re in leadership at a startup, if you’re a founder, a team lead, a manager, or somone who aspires to be one someday…
YES, you should go.

It’s a startup conference that isn’t a startup conference

There is an epidemic in our world and it’s called bad leadership. Being a business leader in any sense often means you feel like you’re way out in the ocean all alone, learning as you’re doing. Even the smallest failure may feel infinite. The highs and lows are shocking and sudden. We’re going to change this trend by helping young leaders build sustainable, healthy companies through wisdom sharing and mentorship.

How do we fix this recurring problem?

We’re repeating the same mistakes, we’re burning out, we’re putting the wrong people in charge. We are focused on valuations and acquisitions when we should be focused on building sustainable leadership and promoting mental health.

Our Amazing Speakers

All of our speakers have been on the front lines of leadership at startups, as founders, startup employees, and consultants to companies in transition.

KEVIN HALE

Startup Mentor and Partner at Y Combinator

Kevin is a true leader in the startup community, and now spends his time mentoring and coaching other startups through seed rounds, acquisitions, and growth phases. He likes vests, and was one of the very first speakers at our innagural event way back in 2012.

SARAH HATTER

Founder of CoSupport and Elevate Summit

Sarah has worked in tech for over 15 years, and has spent the last 8 years consulting companies on building amazing customer experiences. She’s worked with over 200 startups to help build their internal processes, and has learned a lot about failed leadership along the way.

STELI EFTI

Startup Veteran and CEO of Close.Iio

Steli is a startup veteran and passionate mentor to founders at all stages. He is an internationally known speaker and author of 6 books on startups and sales. He’s passionate about helping people build sustainable businesses through sheer hustle and vision. You can hear more of Steli’s wisdom every week on the Startup Chat podcast.

DR. SHERRY WALLING

Clinical Psychologist & Co-Founder of ZenFounder

Dr. Sherry Walling is a licensed clinical psychologist and the co-host of the ZenFounder podcast. Her life’s work is to help high-performing professionals be awesome at their work. She consults regularly with entrepreneurs and founders regarding interpersonal conflicts, burnout, depression, anxiety, existential angst, major transitions, personal balance and the other highs and lows of founder life.

RICK NUCCI

Co-founder & CEO of GURU

Rick has been an entrepreneur in the Philadelphia area since 1999. He’s currently the co-founder & CEO of Guru, which helps companies centralize their collective knowledge. Prior to Guru Rick was the Founder and CTO of Boomi, which defined and led a new segment as the industry’s first cloud integration platform-as-a-service. Boomi was acquired by Dell in 2010.

CAITY COGDELL

Associate Product Manager at Atlassian

What happens when a company with a solid culture, loyal employees, and no real need for change suddenly gets acquired? Caity will talk through her recent acquisition experience to talk about the highs and lows of internal change, and how leaders can take care of their employees during major corporate transitions.

GAVIN  ZUCHLINSKI

Founder, Acuity Scheduling

Gavin has built a thriving company by focusing on customers first. With that, he’s gained a ton of wisdom to share about what makes company culture thrive, and how businesses can maintain their personality and still serve customers well, and why it’s better for employees, and the business, to be honest and show personality even if you offend a few folks along the way.

JEN DARY

Leadership Coach and Founder of Plucky

After years working in tech startups in NYC, Jen decided to take her expertise in manager training and spin it into a consultancy. At Plucky, she evaluates leadership roles at companies of all sizes to help teams evolve and improve. Jen’s spent the past decade helping companies work better, realizing that it’s the relationships we have with our co-workers that make or break retention and organizational success.

JON MCCARTIE

Senior Manager, Technical Support at Heroku

Jon has worked in tech for over 15 years, and in leadership for 5+ years. Having made the rounds from corporate, to startup, to non-profit and back again, he provides a unique perspective on the health and growth of teams.

COLIN FLANIGAN

Support and Success Leader at Pingboard

Colin is a former CoSupport employee who recently settled down at Pingboard. He’s also a recovering perfectionist who has lead multiple teams in both a professional and volunteer capacity. He’s a wealth of knowledge when it comes to discussing exactly how leadership and unflinching perfectionism aren’t always a good mix for an effective team, company, or professional life.

MERCER SMITH-LOOPER

Head of Support at Appcues

Startup leaders share unique skills and personality traits, but that means they can also share the same struggles with certain mental health troubles. Mercer will speak about her own journey with mental health and share tips for managing self-care for your teams.

SAMUEL WILLMAN-ROACH

Manager of Customer Support at Procore

Do not listen to people telling you positive change is impossible. Through his experience building a new team, Samuel was told multiple times that what he was trying to do is impossible. People will not change, the teams will not listen, other people don’t care. Learn from Samuel how by not just accepting that things were impossible, he built a singular role that became a team.

SCOTT ALLISON

Product Manager at Dialpad

Scott started his first company while he was student and since then he’s been in startups his whole career. He’s both founded startups as well as working for others. Scott’s going to share the highlights from those experiences, including some best and worst practices. He’ll talk about engagement, leadership, retention and even a brief dive into “holacracy”.

SHAY HOWE

VP of Product Design at  ActiveCampaign

As a product leader with a design and engineering background, Shay has a passion for solving problems and leading teams. He has an array of experience working with a number of fast growing startups and will be sharing his lessons on how knowing your whole self–strengths, weaknesses and all–in comparison to others makes you a stronger leader and builds closer relationships with your team.

What’s the valuation on your mental health?

Whether we want to acknowledge it or not, a driving force behind so many tragic leadership decisions is often poor mental health. This means everything from lack of empathy, imposter syndrome, fear, depression, narcissism, and crippling perfectionism.

When you mix poor mental health with ill-equipped leaders, you get bad management, toxic corporate culture, short-sighted goal tending, power struggles, and failures. What if we could fix this through better mentorship?

Wisdom > Knowledge

Experience + Time = Wisdom. Sharing our own stories equips others with the tools they need to face similar situations and validates those who’ve had the same struggles. We don’t waste time on panels or Q&A, and all talks are TED-style, 15 minutes or less.  learn more

Mental Health is Essential

There’s plenty of conferences out there that will teach you how to pitch your startup, but we need to do a better job collectively of equipping leaders with healthy emotional habits. Our talks will focus on mental health strategies and won’t shy away from awkward topics.  learn more

Peer-to-Peer Leading Works

We learn best from people who are just like us. Talks are curated to bring actionable takeaways for every attendee, no matter their job title. We choose speakers who will help current leaders and raise up new leaders through inspiring, accessible education.  learn more

Small is Just Better

We keep our events small so you can build a lasting community for outreach and networking. We’ve found our speakers and attendees get the most out of smaller events. Only 150 seats are sold for each event, and we program a good amount of social time into the schedule.

April 21, 2018

We’re brining the Elevate to Sacramento for the first time to take advantage of the amazing food scene, the great weather, and all those local wines. It’s just 2 hours from the Bay Area by car or train, and even has a fancy international airport!

Sacramento, CA

We’re taking over The Urban Hive’s new Cannery location for a full day of talks, socializing, and maybe even a live podcast recording. All Hive members get 50% off tickets.

Kimpton Sawyer Saramento

This brand new hotel has a crazy rooftop bar, swanky decor, and a bowling alley in it. And it’s a 10 minute Lyft from the venue.


Book the Kimpton

Embassy Suites

The Embassy Suites is right on the riverfront in Old Sacramento and is within walking distance to lots of interesting local sights.


Book the Embassy Suites

Sterling Hotel

This hotel is in an old mansion and it’s most probably entirely haunted. If you’re up for something a bit more dramatic, this is the place for you.


Book the Sterling

Get Tickets

Single Ticket

$ 400

  • A single that includes all meals, talks, the welcome happy hour and after party.
Get Tickets

Group Tickets

$ 350

  • Discounted tickets for 3 or more people!
  • A single that includes all meals, talks, the welcome happy hour and after party.
Get Group Tickets

Be part of the change by sponsoring a leader

If you’re a mentor, a startup veteran, or a VC, you probably know a number of young leaders who could use guidance and wisdom from successful, humble people. You can gift them a ticket by adding their name in the attendee field.

Sponsor a Leader

Our most important event yet

We started producing Elevate Support in 2012 to meet the immediate need for education and career development for customer support teams. Since then, we’ve produced 17 events in San Francisco, New York, Chicago, London, Portland, Philadelphia, and Palm Springs, Denver, and San Diego.

Past Event Speakers

Since launching our events in 2012, we’ve been honored to host over 400 speakers on stage from a variety of well-known and well-respected companies. From startups to huge corporations, we’ve had speakers on stage speaking of their experiences working at companies like:

Want to speak at our event? Have questions? Interested in being a sponsor?

Get in touch and we’ll get back to shortly