Startup Mendocino Gala Event Featured KZYX

Lama Nasser-Gammett of The Forest People accepts a mock-up of a $10,000 check from Megan Barber Allende and Jim Mayfield of the Community Foundation of Mendocino County.

Lama Nasser-Gammett of The Forest People accepts a mock-up of a $10,000 check from Megan Barber Allende and Jim Mayfield of the Community Foundation of Mendocino County.

We're thrilled to read this article featuring Startup Mendocino Gala Event.

“Mushroom Jerky Wins Big” By Sarah Reith

August 27, 2019 — Mushroom jerky took first place at Startup Mendocino’s final event on Sunday. Lama Nasser-Gammett, of The Forest People in Boonville, delivered the pitch that won her mushroom farming enterprise $10,000, which she says she’ll invest in a dehydrator, permitting and packaging costs, and a website to help her break into the burgeoning vegan snack food market.

Startup Mendocino was an initiative of West Business Development Center, a local non-profit that provides training to small businesses at various stages of their development. The idea was for 12 of these endeavors to participate in a rigorous training program to hone their pitches to attract investors. The 12 competitors were selected from over 80 applicants, were then winnowed down to five finalists, who presented a quick sketch of their business model, with analyses and projections and ready answers to detailed follow-up questions about percentage of growth, research and development, and what their competitors are up to. But the judges, who came from around the state, weren’t just looking for a glib sales pitch. We’ll hear from the judges, the winner, a local philanthropist, and a representative from the Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development, who worked with West to train aspiring entrepreneurs in Mendocino County.

The runners-up, from second to fifth place, were: Ande, a clog-making company, Are we Safe Yet, a cybersecurity service, The Mendo Voice, an online newspaper, and The Red House, a co-working space.

Listen to the full story about Startup Mendocino Gala Event on KZYX radio here.


Startup Mendocino is a Business Bootcamp and Pitch Competition designed to spark new thinking about what is possible in Mendocino County through entrepreneurship. Startup Mendocino is sponsored by the West Business Development Center, America’s SBDC, The John and Sandra Mayfield Economic Development Fund at the Community Foundation of Mendocino County, Adventist Hospital, Savings Bank of Mendocino County, Economic Development and Financing Corporation, Mendocino College, North Coast Brewery, Harvest Market, The John Pack and Linda Francis Family Fund at the Community Foundation of Mendocino County, Ukiah Chambers of Commerce, Mendocino Coast Chambers of Commerce, Willits Chambers of Commerce, The Coast - KOZT, and the California Association for Micro Enterprise Opportunity.

Startup Mendocino is supported by the Small Business Administration and California Governor Gavin Newsom's Office of Business & Economic Development.

As always, to sign up for free business advising from WestBDC go here

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