An incubator of women leaders

Advisory Relationships for the Entrepreneur

  • 07/25/2019
  • 6:00 PM - 9:00 PM
  • Alley, 499 Hamilton Avenue, Palo Alto CA 94301


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For start-up founders, solopreneurs, and CEOs running larger companies, the importance of having a trusted external sounding board is clear. But where can you find these advisors at each stage of growth? How do you structure an advisory relationship to maximize the impact?

The panel discussion will cover a range of options from peer-to-peer advising (great for start-ups when budgets are tight) to hired business advisors to creating a formal or informal advisory board.

What we’ll cover:

  • The benefits of having an advisor and how it impacts your most valuable resources: time and money

  • How to find the right advisor and approach for you 

  • Brief methodology for these various approaches

  • Q&A


  • 6:00 - 6:30pm Connect & Network
  • 6:30 - 6:45pm Introductions
  • 6:45 - 7:00pm Presentation on Advisor Buddies by Melissa Mahoney
  • 7:00 - 8:00pm Panel on Advisor Relationships
  • 8:00 - 8:30pm Connect & Network

Melissa Mahoney, artist, author
Coauthor of Advisor Buddies: Creating Success and Building Resilience as a Solopreneur

Melissa Mahoney's passion is creating and sharing visual art, whether at her graphic design and branding firm, Indigo Creative LLC, or her fine art studio, Mahoney Artwork.

Melissa became a published author through a collaborative effort with her good friend and coauthor, Donna Weber. Melissa and Donna are "Advisor Buddies" to each other. Advisor Buddies is a peer-to-peer advisory method they created. They found this peer advisory method was so effective that they documented the process, the worksheets and the agendas and are now sharing it with other solopreneurs.

Melissa's personal mission statement is "to enrich myself and those around me by creating and sharing engaging artwork." After writing Advisor Buddies, her mission statement has now expanded to include "enriching those around me by sharing peer-to-peer advisory resources."

Learn more about Melissa Mahoney at and

Svetlana Kamyshanskaya, Founder, Primum Law Group

Svetlana Kamyshanskaya is an accomplished attorney with 20 years of successful experience in legal practice and business.

Svetlana has extensive experience providing full legal support to privately-held businesses in connection with various corporate matters including entity formation, corporate governance, advising clients on a wide range of commercial and financial issues including capitalization, debt and equity financing, director and officer liability, corporate governance compliance, and contracts.

Prior to starting her firm, Primum Law Group, Svetlana worked at a business consulting company assisting  seasoned businesses as well as start-ups in a process of US market entry through development and implementation of their market entry strategy conducting risk assessment of commercial transactions, identifying a potential area of compliance vulnerability and risk, developing and implementing corrective action plans for resolution of problematic issues as well as negotiating and drafting commercial contracts. Svetlana assists her clients in conducting international business transactions by identifying the risks related to transactions as well as potential corporate governance and compliance problems while helping to address them.

Adimika Arthur, Executive Director, HealthTech for Medicaid (HT4M)

Adimika Arthur is an experienced clinical epidemiologist and hospital/health system executive. She brings her population health, public hospital expertise and focus on improving health equity and access to quality care for vulnerable populations.  Adimika is the founding Executive Director for HealthTech for Medicaid (HT4M), a collaborative convening of payers, providers, policymakers and innovative entrepreneurs collectively advocating for health equity and improvement in Medicaid on a national scale. 
Adimika has worked at many hospital systems as an executive including Alameda County Medical Center (now Alameda Health System), University of California at San Francisco (UCSF) and Sutter Health.  She was one of the authors of the 2007 1115 waiver Medicaid expansion grants for Alameda County Medi-Cal program, an investment of over $420 Million dollars into safety-net care improvements across the State of California.
Adimika combines her love of mentoring, servant leadership and service by maintaining non-profit board roles for many organizations including CALHIPSO and others focused on the pipeline of underrepresented youth getting into the full spectrum of health careers.  She received her BS in Biochemistry from Clark Atlanta University in Atlanta, Georgia, her Masters Degree in Public Health in Epidemiology and Health Systems from the University of Washington and spent time at Boston University School of Medicine. 

Lamya Alaoui, Founder & Managing Director, Coach Mya

Lamya is a certified behavioral consultant and Founder of CoachMya, a consulting firm dedicated to enabling teams to communicate and collaborate effectively.

With over 12 years of experience building and leading teams for companies such as Google, Groupon, Microsoft, Orange, Intelcia and Bertelsmann, Lamya has combined her skill sets and expertise to bring these principles to a wider audience, and support companies in building and sustaining team alignment.

Her work focuses on improving workplace performance, morale, and engagement through a better understanding of behavioral dimensions, cognitive diversity, thought processes, and motivational drivers. She is also a mentor for Plug & Play, where she works with startups on talent strategies and leadership development.

Lamya lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband and three daughters where she enjoys horseback riding, cooking and writing.

Aurelia Spivey, Director of Marketing and Business Development, Digitory Legal

Aurelia Spivey is the Director of Marketing and Business Development at Digitory Legal, a budgeting and cost analytics platform focused on bringing data-driven pricing and cost prediction to law. As a former lawyer, law firm marketing and business development manager, legal talent professional, and coach to in-house legal counsel and private practice partners and associates, Aurelia has developed a strong understanding of what drives business and builds relationships in the legal industry. Through her own personal journey of relocating across continents, countries and states, Aurelia has experience in establishing rapport and building trust with new connections to deepen her valued network across the globe.

Pradnya Leitner, Coach & Consultant, Proctor Gallagher Institute

Pradnya Leitner is a coach and a consultant with the Proctor Gallagher Institute; a renowned, global institute in the field of human performance and development. She has been trained by the institute’s founder, Bob Proctor, arguably one of the greatest teachers in the world in the field of human potential and success mindset.

Pradnya brings to her role her own personal story of coming from a modest background to achieving success and recognition in Corporate Sales, Sales Enablement and Execution, and Global Marketing Leadership with industry leaders, IBM and Salesforce.

Pradnya is passionate about helping individuals, companies, executives, and entrepreneurs make a quantum leap in their personal and professional results and achieve their fullest potential. Pradnya accomplishes this goal by helping her clients set a goal that they previously thought unattainable, and then step by step, using a proven, time tested, in-depth methodology called, "Thinking Into Results", she helps her clients transform their thinking, their mindset, their beliefs, their behaviors, their habits, and thereby their results.

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