Barbara Varenhorst is a former secondary teacher, counselor and psychologist in the Palo Alto, CA School District. She earned her Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology from Stanford in 1964. In 1970 she founded the first Peer Counseling Program. She is the co-founder of the National Peer Helpers Association and served as President of the California Association of Peer Programs. Her teaching has included at Harvard, Stanford, Johns Hopkins and San Francisco State. She has been on the Boards of St. Olaf College, The College Board and Search Institute. Currently she serves on the non-profit Vesper Society and as Chair of the Corporate Members. Her publications include, Curriculum Guide for Student Peer Counseling Training, Real Friends: Becoming the Friend You’d Like to Have; Peer Ministry Training: The Basic Training and Peer Helping Training. She co-authored Deciding and Decisions and Outcomes for the College Board and from 1985-1995 she wrote a column “Youth Ask Barbara” for Group Magazine. She continues to provide training and consultations to school Districts and colleges around the Country.
Harriet is a psychiatrist and psychoanalyst. National leader in her profession, she is the President-elect of the American Psychoanalytic Association (APsaA) and the immediate Past Chair of APsaA’s Committee on Psychoanalytic Education. She is a past President and immediate Past Chair of the Board of Trustees of the San Francisco Center for Psychoanalysis where she is a Training and Supervising Analyst. She also is an Associate Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at the University of California San Francisco School of Medicine. Harriet understands, teaches and advocates for the importance of interpersonal relationships and social support systems for optimal human development. She is excited to join Give Us the Floor in offering teenagers a platform for both giving and receiving help within their peer group.
Recognized as one of the top sommeliers in the country, Bright celebrated his 21st birthday in the ultimate fashion – getting hired as a sommelier on the Bellagio team.
Chosen in 2004 to be the opening sommelier for Michael Mina flagship establishment in San Francisco, he assisted in developing the wine programs at other Mina restaurants, including Stonehill Tavern in Monarch Beach where he met Joshua Skenes, with whom he partnered in opening the Michelin three-star restaurant, Saison, in San Francisco.
In 2007, Mark opened his first restaurant, Local Kitchen and Wine Merchant in San Francisco, a precursor to Les Clos. That was followed four years later by the opening of Vinyl Wine Bar in San Francisco.
In his spare time, he makes his own wines under Maison de Partage in Burgundy and has partnered with Ryan Beauregard to produce wines in the Santa Cruz Mountains. He also sources and makes his own sake in Japan under the Water & Rice Sake Company label.
Mark received the Wine Spectator Grand Award in 2014.
Silicon Valley executive and serial tech entrepreneur and strategy consultant for both startups and more mature companies. A graduate from l'Ecole Normale Supérieure in France (doctorate in philosophy), Marylene started her career in France as the founder of ACI (now 4th Dimension) and launched the first bestselling relational database on Macintosh. One of the first European women to start a company in the Silicon Valley, she co-founded ACIUS with Guy Kawasaki in 1987. She then became the CEO of Exemplary Software (spin off from HPLabs), a lean supply chain management system acquired by Persistent Systems, of Brixlogic, a platform for the native implementation of XML Schemas acquired by Diebold, and co-founded TalentCircles of which she was the CEO for four years. She has helped about 30 companies as a board member or consultant.
She has translated books by Guy Kawasaki, Seth Godin and Hugh McLeod into French, as well as written prefaces for these books and others. Earlier in her career, she authored several books on the history of fashion and fragrance.
Victoria is a senior in high school, and lives in the south of the Bay Area, California. She is currently president of the Gay Straight Alliance (GSA) at her high school, and has been part of the club since ninth grade. She is also part of Youth Council, a teen group that works with the GSA Network and is dedicated to making schools a better place for LGBTQ+ and ally students and staff. Although dedicated to making her school a better place for queer and ally youth, she also enjoys hanging out with her friends, reading, listening to music, playing with her sister, and practicing her photography skills.
Kay has over 30 years of experience in helping for-profit and non-profit organizations and governmental agencies achieve their goals and improve operations. She earned a BS in Engineering in hardware and software design from Vanderbilt University and an MBA from University of Hawaii. She also is CPA (inactive). She has worked in small startups and well as large organizations such as Hewlett Packard, Coopers & Lybrand, City & County of San Francisco, and Florida DOT. Her primary responsibilities were in finance, human resources, quality improvement, performance monitoring, and facilities management. She also founded Zillio Foundation a 501 (c) (3) non-profit focused on improving math education for K-8 students and teachers.
Kay enjoys project management in all its forms. She maintains a small management consulting practice and volunteers for organizations focused on children, teens and women.
Valerie is an expert in how to engage teenagers. Following her passion, she decided to create Give Us The Floor. She is an experienced advertising and television executive, founder and CEO of StoraLab, specialized in creating experiences for teens and tweens. Its main project, TBQE The Best Question Ever, is a curiosity-driven social app for young people.
Previously to founding StoraLab, Valerie enjoyed a successful career in the advertising industry in Europe. She was the Founder and Executive Producer of Tipitina Films, a production company specializing in award winning television commercials. Valerie produced international films for advertisers including L’Oréal, Chrysler, Volkswagen, Kraft Foods, and Samsung. She has also held finance and operational leadership roles. Her business success led to the acquisition of Others, a B2B advertising agency by Gyro, a global firm headquartered in London.
Rodger has spent most of his 20+ year career working in entrepreneurial environments, most recently as a founding partner of R&K Consulting LLC, where he enjoys advising entrepreneurs and early stage companies. Working closely with the founders and management teams of various startup companies, Rodger has been successful in assisting them in their fundraising, which includes both venture funding and venture debt. He has worked with companies such as WhiteHat Security, Immunet (acquired by Sourcefire), Sigaba (acquired by Proofpoint), iSEC Partners (acquired by NCC Group), TargetX, StoraLab and 28msec .
Rodger holds a B.S. Business Administration, from the University of California, Berkeley