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10+ can't-miss Houston business and innovation events for February

Here's your one-stop shop for innovation events in Houston this month. Photo via Getty Images

It's a new month, which calls for a new round up of must-attend events. In this batch of in-person and online innovation events, you can check out details on a women-focused conference at Rice University, a pitch competition, educational workshops, and more.

This article will be updated as more business and tech events are announced.

Feb. 3 — The Realities of Raising Capital

WeWork and Republic will host an interactive panel discussion that's event is open to the public and features a discussion with local entrepreneurs and Mikaela Giani, senior investment associate at Republic on their experiences raising capital. This event is part of the newly launched “Let’s Talk Deals” event series from WeWork and Republic focusing on a 2-way conversation between start-up Founders and Venture Capital Investors to understand founders' funding experience, investors' expectations, and what areas need to be improved for both sides to capture foregone opportunities.

The event is on Thursday, February 3, at 4:30 pm. It's free and happening at WeWork (708 Main St, 10th Floor). Click here to register.

Feb. 8 — TEDxBaylorCollegeofMedicine: Reboot, Reframe, ReImagine

The Center for Medical Ethics and Health Policy will host Baylor College of Medicine’s first ever TEDx event. TEDxBaylorCollegeofMedicine is dedicated to bringing together leading thinkers and doers to share ideas across many disciplines – technology, entertainment, design, science, humanities, business and development. Our aim is to build a meaningful connection between the work at Baylor and the people we serve in the community and share inspirational stories of how our community is improving health through science, scholarship and innovation.

The event is on Tuesday, February 8, at 7 pm. It's free and happening online. Click here to register.

Feb. 9 — Code for Houston's Open Project Night: Reduced Inequalities Edition

Impact Hub Houston invites you to connect and collaborate with passionate people who are working on projects, ventures, and collaborations to improve the City of Houston. Open Project Night has been hosted across the Impact Hub global network for a few years, and we are carrying the torch locally to support problem solvers, connectors, and leaders in their efforts to create the change they wish to see in the world.

The event is on Thursday, February 9, at 5:30 pm. It's free and happening online. Click here to register.

Feb. 10 — Digitization of Industrial Diagrams through AI & Computer Vision

DataSeer will introduce the problem of extracting data trapped in legacy technical diagrams and explain how recent technologies in computer vision and machine learning can help automate and accelerate manual effort that’s currently done today.

The event is on Thursday, February 10, at 9 am. It's free and happening online. Click here to register.

Feb. 10 — IDDD Round Table Workshop: Developing Therapeutics for Neurodegenerative Diseases

This workshop will feature presentations from Jim Ray, PhD, MD Anderson Cancer Center and Zachary Sweeney, PhD, CEO, Interline Therapeutics. You will have the opportunity on the registration site to submit questions in advance that may be addressed in the 30-minute round table discussion portion of the workshop. There is a virtual registration option if you prefer to join by zoom.

The event is on Thursday, February 10, at 3:30 pm. It's free and happening at Rice (6500 Main St, Room 1003). Click here to register.

Feb. 11 — Women in Leadership Conference

The 22nd annual conference has been a beacon of inspiration in the Houston community, empowering women to accomplish their career goals. In panel discussions and interactive workshops, attendees hear from leaders across different industries, explore various approaches to leadership, and discuss future opportunities for success.

The event is on Friday, February 11, from 8:15 am to 5 pm. Registration is $120 (code HOU22 for 10 percent off). It's happening at McNair Hall at Rice University. Click here to register.

Feb. 16 — Engage VC: Greycroft

Managing nearly $2B across 400 portfolio companies, including 25 unicorns, Greycroft is viewed as a top VC in the nation. And they are coming to Houston. Join HX Venture Fund at the Ion to hear Brentt Baltimore, principal at Greycroft, and Andrea Course, venture principal at Shell Ventures, discuss Greycroft's perspective on ESG, circular economy, sustainability, and how Houston fits in.

The event is on Wednesday, February 16, from 8:30 to 11 am. It's free and happening at The Ion (4501 Main St.). Click here to register.

Feb. 17 — Microsoft Excel Training with Docmo

Lee Gilley, founder of Docmo and member of The Cannon, is hosting an excel training in the classroom at The Cannon West Houston. Anyone can drop in at any time. In the first half of the event, Lee will cover a few Excel topics, and in the second half there will be a Q&A format so please bring a problem you’re currently working on.

The event is on Thursday, February 17, at 3:30 pm. It's free and happening at The Cannon West Houston Event Space (1334 Brittmoore Rd). Click here to register.

Feb. 17 — Transition on Tap: Reflections and Lessons From the Texas Freeze

In this year’s first Transition On Tap, Greentown Labs will sit down with Houston energy industry experts as they talk about their firsthand experience with the freeze, what steps have been taken in the last year to strengthen the grid, and the role climatetech innovation can play to create more resilient energy infrastructure.

The event is on Thursday, February 17, at 5 pm. It's free and happening online. Click here to register.

Feb. 23 — Houston Startup Showcase

The Houston Startup Showcase is a year-long series of monthly pitch competitions. Founders will pitch and compete for the grand prize package. Watch the startups pitch their company and see who the judges will name the champion of Houston Startup Showcase 2022.

The event is on Wednesday, February 23, at 6 pm. It's free and happening at Ion Houston (4201 Main St). Click here to register.

Feb. 24 — Texas Life Science Forum

Join Rice Alliance and BioHouston for the 10th Annual Texas Life Science Forum on to hear from luminaries in the life science innovation, commercialization, and entrepreneurship community. The day-long conference is an opportunity to see promising life science companies, meet investors and venture capitalists, learn about the latest developments in the Texas life science entrepreneurial ecosystem and research institutions, attend the educational symposium, and network with the community.

The event is on Thursday, February 24, from 8:30 am to 5 pm. Registration is $225, and the event happening at Rice University (6100 Main St). Click here to register.

Feb. 24 — EnergyTech University Prize Collegiate Competition

Sponsored by the Office of Technology Transitions at the U.S. Department of Energy, the EnergyTech University Prize is a collegiate competition challenging multidisciplinary student teams to develop and present a business plan that leverages lab-developed and other high-potential energy technologies. Student teams compete for a total of $250,000 in cash prizes as they explore business opportunities for lab-developed or other high-potential energy technologies, assess commercialization opportunities through market analysis, and present a viable business plan to industry judges. Throughout the competition, they receive mentorship and materials to help them succeed.

The event is on Thursday, February 24, at 3 pm. It's free and happening at Greentown Labs (4200 San Jacinto St). Click here to register.

Feb. 27 to March 5 — Houston Tech Rodeo Roadshow

Houston Tech Rodeo is back — and this time it's a roadshow. The week of events will set up saloons down Main Street and each day will host two 3-4 hour sessions on various innovation topics, as well as coffee networking in the mornings and evening happy hours for further connecting opportunities.

The week of events begins Sunday, February 27, and goes through Saturday, March 5. It's free and happening in downtown Houston. Click here to register.

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Building Houston

 
 

Here's your latest roundup of Houston innovation news you may have missed. Photo by Tim Leviston/Getty Images

Houston's cooling down, but the city's innovation news is heating up, and there might be some headlines you may have missed.

In this roundup of short stories within Houston startups and tech, a Houston startup has a new C-level exec, two innovators join a international cohort of leaders, and more.

NanoTech names new COO

Carrie Horazeck is now the chief commercial officer for NanoTech. Photo courtesy of NanoTech

Houston-based materials science company NanoTech Inc. has appointed Carrie Horazeck as chief commercial officer for the startup, which created a fireproofing and carbon reduction through cool roof coatings. In her new role, Horazeck will lead marketing and sales strategy for the growing company.

“I’ve been a fan of NanoTech since I first met co-founder and CEO Mike Francis at a Halliburton Labs event last year," Horazeck says in a statement. “It’s an incredible team, with an incredible product. They are on the precipice of major growth and I’m very honored to be a part of that journey.”

Prior to NanoTech, Horazeck spent 11 years in management consulting helping to grow her clients' businesses, staying tuned into consumer trends and behaviors to guide product development and intelligent marketing strategy. She's worked with a wide range of industries and clients including Samsung, General Mills, Newell Brands, Coca-Cola, Unilever, American Express, British American Tobacco, Anheuser-Busch, and the Department of Education in New York City. Most recently, she led commercial development and market penetration strategy for an Austin based startup in the renewable energy space.

"We are excited to have Carrie join the NanoTech team. She is going to help us get one step closer to our goal of reducing carbon emissions with our cool roof coating and fireproofing critical infrastructure," says Francis in the statement.

2 Houstonians named to global cohort

Houstonians Allie Danziger and Natasha McDaniel were announced to be joining the Fall 2022 Milestone Makers cohort. Photos courtesy

Two Houston innovators have been named to Nasdaq Entrepreneurial Center's Fall 2022 Milestone Makers cohort, which selects individuals addressing the United Nation's Sustainable Development Goals.

The virtual, 12-week program provides individualized mentorship and executive coaching, as well as access to the Center’s vast network of industry experts to help each founder with his or her milestone. The new cohort was selected through application process, and all hope to improve the lives of and support communities across the globe. The two Houstonians in the current cohort include:

  • Allie Danziger of Ampersand, which enhances employee retention by ensuring mastery in key skills required for entry-level professionals.
  • Natasha McDaniel of Lit for Life, which offers culturally relevant reading and writing resources as well as family coaching and educational consulting services.

Applications are open for the Winter 2023 program are now open.

Houston robotics company to ring the bell on Wall Street

The Nasdaq Bell Ringing Ceremony for Nauticus Robotics, Inc. will take place this Thursday. Image via LinkedIn

Houston-based Nauticus Robotics, which went public last month via SPAC, is due to ring the Nasdaq bell on Wall Street.

The company, which now trades under the $KITT ticker, will have its bell ringing ceremony beginning at 2:45 p.m. CT on October 20 and can be viewed via this link.

Nauticus continues to be led by CEO Nicolaus Radford and the current executive team.

“The closing of this business combination represents a pivotal milestone in our company’s history as we take public our pursuit of transforming the ocean robotics industry with autonomous systems,” Radford, who founded what was known as Houston Mechatronics in 2014, said in a news release about the IPO. “Not only is the ocean a tremendous economic engine, but it is also the epicenter for building a sustainable future.”

UH named 2022 Hispanic Serving Institution Leader by U.S. Fulbright program

UH — and its students — have been recognized by the Fulbright organization. Photo courtesy of UH

For the second year in a row, the University of Houston has been named as a 2022 Fulbright Hispanic Serving Institution Leader.

“As the state’s premier Hispanic-Serving Institution and a top Fulbright producer, the University of Houston strives to ensure an environment of inclusion and success for all,” said UH President Renu Khator. “This recognition is yet another milestone that reinforces what so many already know about our institution … that our students are supported both culturally and academically.”

The recognition was announced the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities annual conference in San Diego on Oct. 10.

The University of Houston recently announced 10 student Fulbright recipients, each prepared to travel far and wide to gain international insights, according to the news release. Since 2018, nearly 50 Fulbright scholarships have been awarded to UH students.

“Enhancing learning and research experiences for students and faculty through the Fulbright Program is important to expanding the University’s international footprint,” says Michael Pelletier, executive director of UH’s Institute for Global Engagement in the release.

Texas investor named among outstanding women in clean energy

Phoebe Wang was honored for her work at Shell Ventures. Photo via LinkedIn

The U.S. Department of Energy recently announced the nine winners of the 2022 Clean Energy Education & Empowerment Awards that honors women for outstanding leadership and accomplishments in clean energy.

“For too long, there has been a significant gender gap in the energy sector, meaning half the population have had a minimized impact on one of our most important industries,” says U.S. Secretary of Energy Jennifer M. Granholm in a news release. “As we transition to a clean energy economy, we will have to tap into the pool of amazing women working in energy and grow their ranks. That’s why DOE is proud to recognize the winners of this year’s C3E Awards, a diverse group of changemaking women tackling some of the biggest challenges in energy.”

Among the honorees, Phoebe Wang, formerly of Shell Ventures and based in Texas, was recognized in the business category. Wang "leads investments in early- and late-stage startups working on technologies to accelerate the energy transition in the areas of hydrogen, carbon capture utilization and storage, energy storage, mobility, and power," per the release. In the past decade, she has invested more than $150 million startups and has been closely involved in the Rice Alliance for Technology and Entrepreneurship. Last week, Wang was announced to be joining the Amazon Climate Pledge Fund as investment partner.

Now in its 11th year, the C3E Inititive led by the DOE — in collaboration with the MIT Energy Initiative, Stanford University’s Precourt Institute for Energy, and the Texas A&M Energy Institute — will award each winner with a cash gift of $8,000 and national recognition of their efforts.

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