News Releases

Women Entrepreneurs to Convene at Circular Summit
Led by Entpreneur Magazine's 2016 Women to Watch, Circular Summit announces its upcoming invitation-only event for high-growth women entrepreneurs with attractive, scalable business models. A select group of 250 esteemed female founders will be joined by mentors, media, investors and experts from across the country during the two-day Summit, held April 14-15, 2016 in Houston at Hotel ZaZa.

HOUSTON, Jan. 14, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Today, Circular Summit announced its upcoming invitation-only event for high-growth women entrepreneurs with attractive, scalable business models. A select group of 250 esteemed female founders will be joined by mentors, media, investors and experts from across the country during the two-day Summit, held April 14-15, 2016 in Houston at Hotel ZaZa.

Logo -

With women joining the entrepreneurial world in record numbers, Circular Summit was born in response to a business environment that isn't always supportive of women-led ventures.

"It is time to increase the numbers of women CEO's in the top 3% of the Fortune 100.  We are changing this by helping women understand the three pillars of their companies; purpose, profit and people," said Carolyn Rodz, CEO of Circular Board and co-chair of Circular Summit.

Circular Summit, presented by Circular Board (, is an interactive challenge to build bigger, bolder, smarter businesses that scale by creating strategic partnerships, accessing sources of capital and creating more purpose-driven organizations. This brings together the most sought-after women entrepreneurs, startup investors, media, enterprise partners and expert mentors to support female founders through participatory presentations, workshops, round tables and more.

"We drive entrepreneurs to create a solid foundation for business acceleration through data-driven growth blueprints, and to implement strategic tactics that immediately work toward closing the gender gap in the startup environment," said Rodz.

The Summit, has attracted well-known leaders in business as featured speakers, including:

  • Elizabeth Gore, Entrepreneur In Residence, Dell
  • Janet Gurwitch, Operating Partner, Castanea Partners and former Founder and CEO, Laura Mercier
  • Maureen Hackett, Honorary Chair, Circular Summit and Philanthropist
  • Rachel Roy, Designer and Philanthropist
  • Mikaila Ulmer, ten-year-old Founder, BeeSweet Lemonade
  • Cindy Whitehead, Co-Founder, Sprout Pharmaceuticals 
  • Jane Wurwand, Co-Founder and Chief Visionary, Dermalogica

"Women only receive 7% of venture funding in the United States. And while they are creating twice as many businesses as men, their fail rate is disproportionately higher," said Elizabeth Gore, Dell entrepreneur-in-residence and Circular Summit co-chair. "By creating a cross-section of mentorship and backing it up with funders, Circular Summit will be a game changer for women in business."

Circular Summit co-chairs Gore and Rodz were both recently named as Entrepreneur Magazine's "Women to Watch."

Circular Summit is in partnership with Dell, Career Partners International, Entrepreneur Magazine, Signia, KIND Snacks and Under Armour. The Circular Summit pitch competition will be purpose-driven for companies to help solve the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

Other presenters scheduled for the event include: Juliana Garaizar, Emily Keeton, Susan McPherson, and Zaw Thet.

Prospective attendees may apply for an invitation at:

About Circular Board:

Circular Board is a collaborative accelerator for growth-oriented female entrepreneurs who lead, or aspire to build, businesses with multi-million dollar revenues. We support women in business around the world through mentorship, content, community and capital, and connect founders to the resources they need to fuel growth. For more information, visit

About the Co-Chairs:

Carolyn Rodz

Circular Board was founded by three-time entrepreneur Carolyn Rodz. She has raised billions of dollars of capital for innovative organizations, created a luxury retail line that sold in over 400 stores worldwide, including Neiman Marcus, Harrod's and Bloomingdales and later launched a global marketing firm that supported specialty product launches within Fortune 500 enterprises and startups positioning themselves for industry leadership.

Carolyn now serves as an advocate for women entrepreneurs, connecting them to sources of capital, strategic partners, and mentors to create businesses that scale. She is recognized among Entrepreneur Magazine's 2016 "Women to Watch", as a Sam Walton Emerging Entrepreneur, and Micro to Millions awardee in partnership with American Express. Carolyn is a delegate to the United Nations Foundation Global Accelerator, a member of the Dell Women's Entrepreneur Network, TEDx speaker, former student board member for the Texas A&M Mays College of Business, and contributor to major media publications including Fortune, HuffingtonPost, Entrepreneur and more.

Elizabeth Gore

Elizabeth Gore is the Entrepreneur-in-Residence at Dell, where she drives initiatives that support Dell's goals around helping small and medium businesses scale and prosper, fueling the expansion of global entrepreneurship to create jobs that will drive the world economy. Elizabeth is personally advising the growth of companies such as the women's accelerator Circular Board, ride share commuting company Scoop, online and mobile fundraising platform Classy, and innovative water company SOMA.

She is the Emeritus Chair of the United Nations Foundation's Global Entrepreneurs Council that builds global partnerships that positively affect the UN's most pressing humanitarian issues. Ms. Gore previously served as the first ever Entrepreneur in Residence for the UN Foundation as well as Vice President of Global Partnerships, and founded strategic grassroots efforts such as Nothing But Nets, Girl Up, and Shot@Life.

A former United States Peace Corps volunteer serving in Bolivia, South America and World Champion Equestrian, Elizabeth was named by People as one of the top 100 Extraordinary Women and is one of Fast Company's Most Creative People in Business. She has been featured on multiple media outlets including: ABC, CBS, CNN, MSNBC, FOX Business, Fast Company, Fortune, Glamour, Entrepreneur, People, and Time. Elizabeth currently serves on the leadership council of the Indiana University's Lilly Family School of Philanthropy, and resides in Sonoma County with her husband James Gore, a California elected official, and two hilarious children.

SOURCE Circular Summit