About Venture School

Venture School was started because every week at Venture Cafe we had conversations about how starting a company is hard and often the biggest leap to make is saying, “I’m doing this.” 

Venture Cafe

At Venture Café St. Louis, we see tens of thousands of people each year, many of which are in the earliest stages of launching a business. We noticed a common thread — many aspiring founders only need a nudge and accountability to take meaningful steps toward making a real company. In 2018 alone, more than 1,800 attendees of Venture Café Thursday said they were in the idea stage. We decided it was time to help those who are serious about their idea, to get it out of their head and into practice. From that, Venture School was born.

Venture School, is a rigorous 12-week course led by experienced entrepreneurs. Meet the directors below and read more about our Mentors.


Tyler Mathews

Executive Director, Venture Café St. Louis

Tyler Mathews is the ​​executive director of Venture Café St. Louis, which hosts the largest weekly gathering of entrepreneurs in the world. Tyler has raised millions of dollars for private projects across health, technology, art, education, and entrepreneurship. After receiving ​his MBA, Tyler went on to become the director of marketing and digital at Ranken Jordan Pediatric Bridge Hospital. ​Previously, Tyler found​ed a geolocation mobile startup, launch​ed​ an experimental new media ​experience, and organized the first Art Hack Day in the Midwest.


Jimmy Hendricks

Founder Agency Maestro & Manager of Lee Labs

Jimmy Hendricks is the founder of Agency Maestro and the manager of Lee Labs. Jimmy developed this software platform because his agency couldn’t find a great tool to manage their clients and realized most didn’t have an effective client management software solution. He is the former Co-Founder and CEO of Lightpost Digital and Deal Current Network. Deal Current Network was a white-label, daily deal platform that operated over 900 daily deals sites, sold deals to 1.2 Million+ customers, and processed over $50 Million in daily deals before selling their clients to Black Hawk Network. He received a Masters in Accounting from the University of Missouri and has been a 4 time San Diego Business Journal Most Admired CEO.