20 LA Tech and Startup Leaders and Thinkers to Follow on Twitter

Luis Gomez

Luis Gomez is dot.LA's Engagement Editor. Prior to joining the dot.LA team, he served as the audience growth consultant for Capital & Main. He has also previously worked as a digital producer for The San Diego Union-Tribune, NPR affiliate KPCC in Los Angeles and Yahoo. Follow him on Twitter at @RunGomez.

20 LA Tech and Startup Leaders and Thinkers to Follow on Twitter
Photo by Sara Kurfeß on Unsplash

Whether you’re a venture capitalist, angel investor, founder, influencer or simply someone who wants to learn from some of the most influential individuals in the tech and startup scene, social media can offer a gateway into the ideas shaping the local landscape.

We’ve done our best this year to follow the ideas and big moves in L.A.’s startup scene by following influential local thinkers on Twitter, who often blast out their ideas using the hashtag #LongLA.

We’ve put together this list of 20 influential and diverse voices in social media who are worth following. Have a look. Anyone we’re missing? Let us know!

Anna Barber (@annawbarber)

Anna Barber (@annawbarber) | Twitter

Investing partner at M13, partner at the Fund LA, and former managing director of Techstars LA.

Mark Suster (@msuster)

Partner at Upfront Ventures and former vice president of Salesforce.

Miki Reynolds (@mikster)

CEO at Grid110 and partner at Republic.

Shiloh Johnson (@shilohajohnson)

Shiloh Johnson (@shilohajohnson) | Twitter

CEO and founder at ComplYant App.

Gregorio Rojas (@g8rojas)

Gregorio Rojas (@g8rojas) | Twitter

Co-Founder and CTO at Sabio.

David J. Whelan (@djwhelan)

David J. Whelan (@djwhelan) | Twitter

CEO of BioscienceLA.

Isai Bismark Cortez (@IsaiBCortez)

Isai (@IsaiBCortez) | Twitter

Tax Lawyer and Founder of Synkbooks.

Miles Montes 🐶 (@MilesNextDoor)

Miles Montes \ud83d\udc36 (@MilesNextDoor) | Twitter

CPO and co-founder of Docspace.

Ross Felix (@DatingRev)

Business Analyst at Novocardia.

Qiana Patterson (@Q_i_a_n_a) 

Qiana Patterson (@Q_i_a_n_a) | Twitter

General Partner at Tamaa Capital, Chair of Pledge LA at Annenberg Foundation and Advisor and Investor at Cap Table Coalition.

Andrew Chau (@chaumeleon)

AC (@chaumeleon) | Twitter

CEO and co-founder at Boba Guys Inc. and co-founder at Tea People USA.

Liliana Aidé Monge (@mongeliliana) 

Liliana Aid\u00e9 Monge (@mongeliliana) | Twitter

Co-founder and CEO of Sabio.

Arlan Hamilton 👊🏾 (@ArlanWasHere) 

Arlan \ud83d\udc4a\ud83c\udffe (@ArlanWasHere) | Twitter

Managing partner at Backstage Capital.

Josh Ogundu (@JoshuaOgundu)

Josh (@JoshuaOgundu) | Twitter

CEO of Heart to Heart, an audio first dating app.

Greg Bettinelli (@gregbettinelli)

Greg Bettinelli (@gregbettinelli) | Twitter

Partner at Upfront Ventures and co-founder of MuckerLab.

Andrew Chen (@andrewchen)

andrewchen.eth (@andrewchen) | Twitter

Partner at Andreessen Horowitz.

Rob Ryan (@IAmRobRyan)

Founder of GrowthHax.

Trish Halamandaris (@THalamandaris)

Trish Halamandaris (@THalamandaris) | Twitter

Director of the Venture Accelerator at UCLA School of Management.

Peter Pham (@peterpham) 

Peter Pham (@peterpham) | Twitter

Co-founder @scienceinc startup studio/incubator.

Subscribe to our newsletter to catch every headline.

Cadence

Genies Wants To Help Creators Build ‘Avatar Ecosystems’

Christian Hetrick

Christian Hetrick is dot.LA's Entertainment Tech Reporter. He was formerly a business reporter for the Philadelphia Inquirer and reported on New Jersey politics for the Observer and the Press of Atlantic City.

Genies Wants To Help Creators Build ‘Avatar Ecosystems’

When avatar startup Genies raised $150 million in April, the company released an unusual message to the public: “Farewell.”

The Marina del Rey-based unicorn, which makes cartoon-like avatars for celebrities and aims to “build an avatar for every single person on Earth,” didn’t go under. Rather, Genies announced it would stay quiet for a while to focus on building avatar-creation products.

Genies representatives told dot.LA that the firm is now seeking more creators to try its creation tools for 3D avatars, digital fashion items and virtual experiences. On Thursday, the startup launched a three-week program called DIY Collective, which will mentor and financially support up-and-coming creatives.

Read moreShow less

Here's What To Expect At LA Tech Week

Christian Hetrick

Christian Hetrick is dot.LA's Entertainment Tech Reporter. He was formerly a business reporter for the Philadelphia Inquirer and reported on New Jersey politics for the Observer and the Press of Atlantic City.

Here's What To Expect At LA Tech Week

LA Tech Week—a weeklong showcase of the region’s growing startup ecosystem—is coming this August.

The seven-day series of events, from Aug. 15 through Aug. 21, is a chance for the Los Angeles startup community to network, share insights and pitch themselves to investors. It comes a year after hundreds of people gathered for a similar event that allowed the L.A. tech community—often in the shadow of Silicon Valley—to flex its muscles.

From fireside chats with prominent founders to a panel on aerospace, here are some highlights from the roughly 30 events happening during LA Tech Week, including one hosted by dot.LA.

Read moreShow less

PCH Driven: Director Jason Wise Talks Wine, Documentaries, and His New Indie Streaming Service SOMMTV

Jamie Williams
­Jamie Williams is the host of the “PCH Driven” podcast, a show about Southern California entrepreneurs, innovators and its driven leaders on their road to success. The series celebrates and reveals the wonders of the human spirit and explores the motivations behind what drives us.
Jason Wise holding wine glass
Image courtesy of Jason Wise

Jason Wise may still consider himself a little kid, but the 33-year-old filmmaker is building an IMDB page that rivals colleagues twice his age.

As the director behind SOMM, SOMM2, SOMM3, and the upcoming SOMM4, Wise has made a career producing award-winning documentary films that peer deep into the wine industry in Southern California and around the world.

On this episode of the PCH Driven podcast, he talks about life growing up in Cleveland as a horrible student, filmmaking, Los Angeles and his latest entrepreneurial endeavor: A streaming service called SOMMTV that features–what else?–documentaries about wine.

The conversation covers some serious ground, but the themes of wine and film work to anchor the discussion, and Wise dispenses bits of sage filmmaking advice.

“With a documentary you can just start filming right now,” he says. “That’s how SOMM came about. I got tossed into that world during the frustration of trying to make a different film, and I just started filming it, because no one could stop me because I was paying for it myself. That’s the thing with docs,” or “The good thing about SOMM is that you can explain it in one sentence: ‘The hardest test in the world is about wine, and you’ve never heard about it.’”

…Or at least maybe you hadn’t before he made his first film. Now with three SOMM documentaries under his belt, Wise is nearing completion of “SOMM4: Cup of Salvation,” which examines the history of wine’s relationship with religion. Wise says it’s “a wild film,” that spans multiple countries, the Vatican and even an active warzone. As he puts it, the idea is to show that “wine is about every subject,” rather than “every subject is about wine.”

For Wise, the transition to launching his own streaming service came out of his frustration with existing platforms holding too much power over the value of the content he produces.

“Do we want Netflix to tell us what our projects are worth or do we want the audience to do that?” he asks.

But unlike giants in the space, SOMMTV has adopted a gradual approach of just adding small bits of content as they develop. Without the need to license 500 or 1,000 hours of programming, Wise has been able to basically bootstrap SOMMTV and provide short form content and other more experimental offerings that typically get passed over by the Hulus and Disneys of the world.

So far, he says, the experiment is working, and now Wise is looking to raise some serious capital to keep up with the voracious appetites of his subscribers.

“Send those VCs my way,” Wise jokes.

Subscribe to PCH Driven on Apple, Stitcher, Spotify, iHeart, Google or wherever you get your podcasts.

dot.LA reporter David Shultz contributed to this report.

RELATEDEDITOR'S PICKS
LA TECH JOBS
interchangeLA
Trending