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Dawn Dickson-Akpoghene

Dawn Dickson-Akpoghene

Author of Built Differently (Penguin Group)

Speaker, Business Advisor, and Angel Investor

Dawn Dickson-Akpoghene is a serial entrepreneur and inventor with over 20 years of experience in technology, marketing, and business development. She has founded five successful cash flow positive companies since 2001, including Flat Out of Heels (2011) and PopCom (2017), and is a pioneer in the equity crowdfunding space. She’s a seasoned professional speaker, business advisor and angel investor, and continues to be recognized as one of the nation’s top retail tech entrepreneurs.

Dawn has been named to the Forbes Next 1000 list (2021), featured on the cover of Black Enterprise, seen in Entrepreneur, Fortune, Huffington Post, Essence Magazine, and more. Dawn is the winner of the 2020 OBWS Entrepreneur of the Year award, a graduate of the 2019 Nasdaq Milestone Maker program, honored as one of the National Urban League Young Professionals ‘Heroes in the Movement’ and featured as INC Magazine Top 100 Female Founders.

Dawn received her B.A. in Journalism from The Ohio State University and studied technology at DeVry University. She currently resides between Miami, FL and Columbus, OH with her husband, Frederick, and her daughter, Nia.

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Keynote Lecture Topics

  • Non-Traditional Ways of Raising Capital

    In this keynote or workshop, Dawn takes you through the various ways to secure capital for your business outside of the traditional venture capital or bank route. This talk focuses on the JOBS Act and SEC Title III Regulation CF and Regulation D rules around raising capital.

  • Blockchain Technology for Retail

    In this keynote, Dawn discusses how blockchain technology can be leveraged in retail, including for the use case of selling regulated retail products including cannabis, alcohol, and pharmaceuticals.

  • The Future of Retail is Omnichannel

    In this keynote, Dawn discusses the automated retail technology industry and how vending and kiosks are the future of omnichannel retail. Topics include: how kiosks and vending machines are innovating retail, why omnichannel distribution is important, and how small and medium-size companies can compete with Amazon through maximizing omnichannel distribution.

  • Perfecting Your Pitch

    Dawn has won thousands of dollars and secured over $1.5 million in investments from pitch competitions, venture capitalists, and angel investors. In this workshop or keynote, Dawn takes you step-by-step with key tips, vocabulary, and techniques on how to create the perfect pitch to attract customers and investors. Takeaways will be an editable investor deck template and a vocabulary list.

  • Female Entrepreneur: When Being Underrepresented is an Advantage

    Dawn discusses her 19-year journey as a woman in technology and ways for other women to leverage their unique skill sets to design the life and business they have always desired. Topics include lifestyle design, the importance of self-care, quieting the noise in your life, finding your ‘why’ and staying true to yourself.

  • BARS! Live

    BARS! Live is a live interactive version of the BARS! Podcast hosted by Dawn Dickson and Kaleem Musa on Spotify, Apple, and Google. BARS! podcast was Inspired by an epic rant on Instagram Live about the state of entrepreneurship. In BARS! Dawn and her co-host Kaleem are giving a real-world perspective on entrepreneurship from starting a company to customer acquisition to raising capital. BARS! Is full of free game for those who are, and those who are thinking about becoming entrepreneurs, with a hip hop flavor. Topics can vary and are based on the seven episodes of the podcast.