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Vice President Al Gore and Presidents of PayPal and Evernote among Speakers Scheduled for Southland Conference in Nashville

Launch Tennessee and PandoDaily have released the first set of speakers for the 2014 Southland entrepreneur conference, scheduled for June 9 – 11 in Nashville. The speakers include Former Vice President Al Gore; PayPal President David Marcus; Evernote CEO Phil Libin; Bonobos, Inc. CEO Andy Dunn; Coatue Management Senior Managing Director Thomas Laffont; and Tristan Walker, founder and CEO of Walker & Company Brands, Inc.

“This lineup spans the spectrum of leaders driving the tech economy,” said PandoDaily Founder and Editor-in-Chief Sarah Lacy. “We have a statesman who is also heavily involved in tech companies, a mega-investor who just did one of the most controversial deals in the Valley and the president of one of the largest and most iconic web brands in the midst of a turnaround – as well as three well-known CEOs in the process of building large companies in three wildly different sectors.”

Former Vice President Gore is co-founder and chairman of Generation Investment Management, a senior partner at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers and a member of Apple, Inc.’s board of directors. He also serves as chairman of The Climate Reality Project, a nonprofit devoted to solving the climate crisis. Gore served as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate – representing Tennessee – before serving eight years as vice president of the United States. Gore received the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize for “informing the world of the dangers posed by climate change.”

Marcus founded GTN Telecom and served as chairman and CEO until 2000, when it was acquired by World Access. He also founded Echovox, a mobile monetization company, and Zong, a mobile payments provider for gaming and social networking companies. After Zong was acquired by eBay/PayPal in 2011, Marcus became vice president and general manager of the mobile division of PayPal. In April 2012, he became president of PayPal.

Serving as Evernote’s CEO since 2007, Libin is an entrepreneur and executive who has led two Internet companies from the very beginning to proven commercial success, and helped three others through rapid growth. Prior to joining Evernote, Libin founded and served as president of CoreStreet, currently one of the top companies providing smart credential and identity management technologies to governments and large corporations throughout the world.

Dunn co-founded Bonobos Inc., a men’s clothing company, in 2007. He launched Maide, an online pro shop for classic golf apparel, under Bonobos Inc. in 2013. He is also co-founder of Red Swan Ventures, which has invested in Birchbox, Warby Parker, Hailo and more.

Laffont joined Coatue Management in 2003. Last year he helped launch a $300 million fund to invest in high-growth, pre-IPO startups like Box.com and most recently in Snapchat, in which he led the $50 million investment. He also invested $45 million in HotelTonight, a popular app for last-minute hotel reservations.

Walker founded his company in 2013 with the mission to make health and beauty simple for people of color. He was previously entrepreneur-in-residence at Andreessen Horowitz and director of business development at Foursquare. He has been named to Ebony Magazine’s 100 Most Powerful People, the Hollywood Reporter’s Digital Power 50 and Black Enterprise’s 40 Next lists. He is also founder and chairman of CODE2040, a program that matches high performing black and Latino software engineering students with Silicon Valley startups for summer internships.

“Southland is quickly becoming one of the top technology and startup conferences in the country. Southland is the perfect platform to showcase the strong tech and startup culture throughout the southeast. Our inaugural event last year was a huge success and as indicated by the current lineup of speakers, we’re taking it to the next level in 2014,” said Launch Tennessee CEO Charlie Brock.

Launch Tennessee is a public-private partnership focused on supporting the development of high-growth companies in the state of Tennessee with the ultimate goal of making Tennessee the No. 1 place in the Southeast to start and grow a company. Launch Tennessee focuses on four key areas: entrepreneurship, commercialization, capital formation and outreach. Launch Tennessee is in part funded by a grant from the State of Tennessee. Please friend Launch Tennessee on Facebook (www.Facebook.com/LaunchTN), Twitter (www.Twitter.com/LaunchTN), YouTube (www.YouTube.com/LaunchTN) and Flickr (www.Flickr.com/LaunchTN).

PandoDaily is a web publication that offers technology news, analysis and commentary, with a focus on Silicon Valley, New York and Los Angeles startup ecosystems. PandoDaily was formed in January 2012 with the primary goal of being the site of record for Silicon Valley. Since then, PandoDaily has produced more than 30 events through their Emmy Nominated PandoMonthly series. For more information on PandoDaily, visit their website (www.pandodaily.com), Twitter (www.twitter.com/pandodaily) and Facebook (www.facebook.com/pandodaily).

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