Meet the Judges of the Million Dollar Pitch Competition

Meet the Judges of the Million Dollar Pitch Competition

In September, six leading SaaS-based startups will take to the INBOUND stage as part of HubSpot for Startups and Ventures Million Dollar Pitch Competition to make their business case in front of an esteemed panel of judges. Only one will walk away with a game-changing investment from HubSpot Ventures that can help turn their unicorn dreams into reality. 

Who will these startup founders be pitching to? From iconic VCs to leading execs, this panel will provide feedback, mentorship, and insights to the finalists and will ultimately crown the 2023 winner of the “Million Dollar Pitch.” Get to know this year’s top tier judges and join this exciting session to learn what it takes to deliver a compelling pitch. 

Arlan Hamilton - BlogArlan Hamilton
Founder & Managing Partner, Backstage Capital

A serial entrepreneur, author, and master multi-tasker, Arlan founded Backstage Capital in 2015 to invest in founders who are people of color, women and/or LGBTQ. She is also the founder of, a startup that connects outstanding employee talent with inclusive companies. Arlan's book, “It’s About Damn Time,” details her journey from homelessness to venture capital trailblazer. She hosts the popular podcast “Your First Million” and was the first non-celebrity Black woman to grace the cover of Fast Company magazine.

Lily Lyman BlogLily Lyman
General Partner, Underscore VC

Lily is a general partner at Underscore VC, a Boston-based firm investing at Seed in bold B2B software founders. There she leads identifying investment opportunities in companies that will define categories, reshape industries, and change the world via Future of Work, Digital Transformation, Vertical SaaS, Customer Experience, and Commerce. Lily came to Underscore from Facebook, where as a growth leader, she launched products that drove 100M new users in 4 years. Today she is a Board of Director for the NVCA, MIT Sandbox, Harvard Allston Fund, and is a leader of the Boston All Raise Chapter. 

Kipp Bodnar BlogKipp Bodnar
Chief Marketing Officer, HubSpot

As the Chief Marketing Officer of HubSpot, Kipp sets HubSpot’s global inbound marketing strategy to drive awareness and demand for HubSpot’s inbound marketing and sales products. Prior to his role as CMO, Kipp served as Vice President of Marketing at HubSpot, overseeing all demand generation activity worldwide, building out the EMEA and APAC marketing teams, and managing HubSpot’s field marketing, localization, strategic partnerships, and social media efforts. Kipp serves as a marketing advisor for SaaS companies including SimplyMeasured, InsightSquared and Guidebook.

Sarah Hodges BlogSarah Hodges
General Partner, Pillar VC

Sarah Hodges has spent the last decade as a partner and executive in high-growth consumer and enterprise companies. Prior to Pillar, Sarah served on the executive team at Pluralsight (NASDAQ: PS) and co-founded, a leadership development company that has transformed thousands of emerging leaders. Sarah invests in enterprise and consumer companies on behalf of Pillar VC and leads the firm’s platform, supporting portfolio companies with access to leadership development, talent and customer connections.

Howard Wright BlogHoward Wright
VP and Global Head, AWS Startups

Howard Wright is the VP and Global Head of AWS Startups, a global organization dedicated to helping startups to create, build, and grow on the world’s leading cloud platform.

Prior to joining AWS, Howard was CEO and President of C360 Technologies, a computer vision SaaS company that provides ultra-high-quality video solutions to broadcasters and sports leagues. Before that, he led digital for sports and entertainment at Intel Capital, and spent 14-years at Qualcomm Inc., culminating in his role as Senior Vice President.

Howard holds a bachelor’s degree in Qualitative Economics from Stanford University, where he also played collegiate basketball. He continued his athletic career as a professional NBA player with the Dallas Mavericks, Orlando Magic, and Atlanta Hawks. Howard is currently active on several national charitable boards, including serving as Chairman of the Pro Kids Golf Academy and Learning Center.

Brandon Greer BlogBrandon Greer
Head of Ventures, HubSpot

Brandon leads HubSpot Ventures, the strategic investment arm of HubSpot, and supports the company's efforts in M&A, strategy, and strategic venture investing. Prior to helping form HubSpot Ventures, Brandon was a software investor at OpenView Venture Partners in Boston, where he supported investments in Applitools, Calendly, and Loopio. He holds a BS from Cornell University.

Find more information on the Million Dollar Pitch Competition hosted by HubSpot for Startups and HubSpot Ventures here and don’t forget to register for INBOUND to get a front row seat of this exciting session