Speakers

James Alcorn
Zetta Venture Partners

James Alcorn is an investment professional with experience in private equity, investment banking, and equity research.

Prior to joining Zetta, James worked as an investor at Spectrum Equity, a global private equity firm supporting software, internet, and information services businesses. Prior to Spectrum, he worked as an investment banking analyst at Avendus Capital in Mumbai, advising India-based consumer internet businesses through their growth stage financings. James’ professional experience began in internet and technology equity research at Mizuho Securities in San Francisco.

James earned a BSc from UC Berkeley where he was a member of the heavyweight rowing team. He is an avid vinyl DJ with a penchant for driving house and techno, and a classically trained pianist and cellist. James grew up in Brisbane, Australia.

Shuonan Chen
Founding Partner of IOVC & Agile VC

Shuonan Chen, Founding Partner of IOVC & Agile VC, CEO of Shinect (Silicon Valley-based community of 5,000+ engineers passionate about entrepreneurship), and Board Member of North America Blockchain Association.

At IO and Agile, Shuo has invested in and helped various startups globalize and expand into new markets; notable investments include Boom (unicorn), Chariot (acquired by Ford), Checkr (unicorn), Grubmarket, Matternet, Node.io, Rescale and Zenreach. She is also a Lecturer at UC Berkeley and Faculty at Singularity University.

Prior, Shuo worked at Goldman Sachs in investment banking, where she was involved in deals including Alibaba’s $21.8 billion IPO, the largest IPO in US history. There, she also helped run the convertibles business and represented the firm on the Board of Women in Finance.

Before that, Shuo was at PwC, where she worked on Google’s $12.5 billion acquisition of Motorola and LinkedIn’s $119 million acquisition of SlideShare. She also ran Cashify, a social enterprise for financial literacy. Shuo graduated cum laude from UC Berkeley with a triple major (and 2 minors) in 3 years, and has been a Board Member for Berkeley’s alumni association. She also completed a JD with the Chinese University of Hong Kong, where her work on financial regulation will be soon published by Cambridge University Press.

Gwen Edwards
Golden Seeds

Over 30 years experience in technology market leadership - telecommunications, mobile, software, networks from R&D at Stanford Research Institute, to product development, sales, marketing, and general management at Fortune 50, to CEO of a Venture Capital backed company. Advisor to high growth company executives and investors; and Fortune 500 business units. Seek opportunities to work with businesses ready to scale, drive profit, high impact, and still serve as catalysts for social change.

Specialties: Corporate strategy, sales leadership, business development, marketing communication/messaging, market research/focus groups, stakeholder engagement, issue clarification resolution; Also deeply immersed in fund raising processes, due diligence, venture growth and exit options.

Claudia Fan Munce
Venture Advisor, NEA

Claudia started her career as a software engineer at IBM Research and retired as the Managing Director of Venture Capital Group and Vice President of Corporate Strategy and Corporate Development M&A Group. Upon her retirement from IBM in 2016 after 30 years of service, she joined NEA, one of the largest and most active venture firm, as a Venture Advisor.

She is also a member of the angel investment group Broadway Angels, and a frequent guest lecturer at Stanford Graduate School of Business on a Corporate Venture case created based on her.

Claudia serves as the chairwoman of the board of the Global Corporate Venturing Group, she is an advisor to the American Association for Advancement of Science and Parity.org, and a board member of Bank of the West/BNP Paribas Group, the Best Buy Corporation, and the CoreLogic Inc,.

Claudia was born in Taiwan and grew up in Brazil. She holds a master's degree in Computer Science from Santa Clara University and a master's degree in Management from Stanford University.

Curtis Feeny
Silicon Valley Data Capital

Curtis Feeny has invested in enterprise software for 19 years with a focus on data analytics. His boards have included Khan Academy, Stanford Federal Credit Union, Staples (SPLS:NYSE), Ayla Networks, Kaggle, Wise.io, Autogrid, Sensys, and numerous other successful startups. He also invested early in Plangrid (acquired Autodesk), Accuray (IPO), and other successful startups out of Stanford University.

He served on the board of Trammell Crow Company (TCC: NYSE), which was purchased by CB Richard Ellis (CBG: NYSE) in 2006. Curtis was appointed by President George W. Bush to be a Trustee of the Presidio Trust. Previously, Curtis was the first Executive Vice President of the newly formed Stanford Management Company, helping oversee the University’s endowment from 1992 to 2000, when assets under management grew from $1.5 billion to $9 billion. Curtis has an MBA from Harvard Business School, and a BS in mechanical engineering from Texas A&M University.

Gary Fowler
Co-Founder and President, yva.ai

An ward-winning startup executive with 29+ years of success as the founder of 10 startups. Gary is passionate about executive leadership, sales, marketing, operational and investment management. He is the Co-Founder and President of the award-winning AI startup Yva.ai, as well as the investment firm, DY Investments.

Gary has recently been named one of the "30 Most Influential Executives to Watch" and joined Forbes Business Council. Gary is a recognized expert in entrepreneurship (including entrepreneurial education), lean startup methods, innovation management, and technology development and has served as a consultant to numerous international companies and startups.

He has extensive experience in fundraising acquired through the fundraising for YVA.AI (9.5 million), an IPO (CKSW), and the creation of the successful Eastern European accelerator and corporate education company GVA LaunchGurus with over 187 companies curated with 34% raising money. Gary continues to work with MBA and EMBA groups globally. He is a frequent speaker at global conferences and podcasts and has done a TEDX on his vision of the soft side of startup success. He is a contributing writer at Forbes.

He resides in Silicon Valley and Palm Beach, Florida with his wife, Ekaterina.

Ed Lambert
Senior Vice President, Bridge Bank

Ed Lambert is a Senior Vice President at Bridge Bank with more than 35 years of experience in working with technology companies. He has worked with client companies at all stages of life, from early-state startup to IPO. Through his career, his client relationships have covered all aspects of technology, including such iconic companies as Cisco, Sybase, BioMarin, Atmel, CNET, Solar City and Pandora.

Working with start-up and young growing companies is a major passion of Ed’s and Bridge that they share with the groups that support that growth in downtown San Jose.

Ed currently serves on several advisory Boards, and is a Chevalier of the order of Knights of St. John of Jerusalem, a charitable organization founded in 1099. He plays for 2 bands, participates in martial arts, enjoys skiing, is a big NASCAR fan, and in between it all is working on a book of poetry.

Ed holds a BA in history from UC Santa Cruz and an MBA in marketing from Santa Clara University.

Dr. Monique H. Lambert, PhD
Sand Hill Angels

Dr. Monique H. Lambert is an ethnographer, UX architect, engineer, and Silicon Valley serial intrapreneur with over 20 years of experience driving technology-enabled product, service, and practice innovation in the healthcare, aging services, and enterprise verticals. Monique is Principal of Monique H. Lambert & Associates, a consultancy specializing in lean startup practices applied to development of next-generation health IT products and services.

Monique’s experience includes primary ethnographic research of healthcare delivery across the continuum of care spanning the hospital to home, and operational work centered on defining new usage models and enabling customer adoption of Intel’s first mobile and remote health management platforms for the healthcare vertical.

Most recently, Monique worked as Senior Healthcare User Experience Architect in Intel Corporation’s Health Strategy and Solutions Group where she defined new health IT usage models and user experience strategies aimed at driving adoption of Internet of Things (IoT), client computing, and distributed analytics technologies into the healthcare vertical. Monique also worked as Medical Ethnographer and Human-Centered Design Lead at Palo Alto Medical Foundation/Sutter Health where she led design and implementation of linkAgesTM, a technology platform designed to help older adults age successfully in community. Monique is a member of Sand Hill Angels and holds a doctorate in Engineering Management from Stanford University.

Susan Mason
Aligned Partners

Susan Mason has over 25 years of operating management and venture capital experience. She is the co-founding partner of Aligned Partners, an early stage venture capital firm focused on investing in capital efficient start-ups in the enterprise space. Prior to Aligned Partners, she was a General Partner with ONSET Ventures, an early stage venture capital firm. Susan specializes in investing in the information technology area, specifically communications, security and financial technology. As an investor and board member, Susan has played a pivotal role in the development of companies including Securent (acqd CSCO), Alteon (IPO), Gadzoox (IPO), SilverTail Systems (acqd EMC), Omney (acqd MA), and many others.

Prior to entering venture capital investing, she held positions in high-technology engineering, marketing and business development. She led a highly successful consulting practice, helping Fortune 1000 corporations capitalize on emerging markets and technologies. Early in her career, she held positions in marketing and engineering design of high-performance systems and microprocessors for Fujitsu Microelectronics, Fairchild Semiconductor and NCR Microelectronics.

Susan received a B.S. in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from the University of Colorado and an M.B.A. from the University of California, Los Angeles. She is a regular guest speaker on entrepreneurial topics at Stanford University, UCLA and many of the local events in Silicon Valley. She is a founding board member of the Center for Venture Education, which operates the Kauffman Fellows Program. She has served as its Chairman and continues to serve on the board as Chair Emeritus.

Manan Mehta
Unshackled Ventures

Manan is a founding partner of Unshackled Ventures, an early stage venture capital fund for immigrant-founded startups in the U.S. The fund has led marquee investments in driverless trucking, space tech, plant-based proteins, and emotional intelligence.

Prior to Unshackled Ventures, Manan ran marketing for ed-tech startup Kno that raised over $90M of funding from top VCs including Andreessen Horowitz, First Round Capital, and Floodgate. The company was acquired by Intel in 2013.

Before Kno, Manan was an investment banker at the Royal Bank of Canada, with his most notable deal being the $1.9B acquisition of Skype led by Silver Lake and Andreessen Horowitz in 2009 - later sold to Microsoft for $8.5B. Manan has been invited by the White House and the U.S. State Department to speak at the Global Entrepreneurship Summit. He’s an active mentor to startups at Stanford University and has been an op-ed contributor in the Huffington Post, ReCode, with the firm being featured in the WSJ, Forbes, Bloomberg, Financial Times, CNN and many other national press outlets.

Ullas Naik
Structured Capital

Ullas is a seasoned venture capitalist, angel investor and entrepreneur with over two decades of entrepreneurial and early-stage investment experience across over 350 companies. Prior to founding Streamlined Ventures, he co-founded investment firm Cota Capital.

Prior to that, Ullas was a senior member of the investment team for 12 years at Globespan Capital and helped build the firm. He has also been an active angel investor over the last 22 years during which he invested in over 60 companies spanning Internet 1.0, Web 2.0, mobile web, social web, enterprise computing as well as disruptive technologies in other domains such as robotics and wearable computing.

Before his institutional investing career Ullas was a top ranked Wall Street research analyst at FAC Equities/First Albany. He was recognized by the Wall Street Journal and Fortune Magazine as a Wall Street All Star. Prior to that, Ullas received an MBA degree after starting a chemicals trading business in India. He also has a bachelor’s degree in organic chemistry

Philip O'Connor
Blackhorn Ventures

Philip O’Connor is a Co-Founder and Managing Partner of Blackhorn Ventures. Previously, Philip was Co-Founder and CEO of PAX Pure, an industrial water treatment company that developed a unique thermal water treatment technology focused on purification of industrial wastewaters. He led the company from early prototyping and early-stage financing to scaled in-field pilot and the securing of a large strategic partnership.

Philip is an experienced investor and advisor in industrial resource management, water technology, and energy. Originally from Montana, Philip has worked in various fields including wind energy development, environmental non-profits, land management, as well as angel investing. He is focused on the promotion and adoption of technologies that improve resource use, an interest that started as an early member of The Biomimicry Institute.

Philip enjoys being an active mentor in innovation networks, especially helping founders navigate the technology commercialization process. Philip is a dedicated supporter of thoughtful conservation and is a member of the Leadership Council of Conservation International. He holds a B.A. Honors from the University of Canterbury, and an MBA in Sustainable Management from Presidio Graduate School.

Heidi Patel
Rethink Impact

Heidi is a Managing Partner at Rethink Impact, based in San Francisco and sitting on the boards of Spring Health, Ketos, Savonix and as a board observer for Angaza, Juntos Global, and Univfy.

Previously, she was President of New Island Capital Management, an institutional-scale and 100% mission-focused investment advisor to a single ultra high net worth family. In this capacity, she helped grow and run the firm while also running its early stage investing program. She sat on New Island’s Investment Committee, overseeing 100+ investments, across multiple asset classes, in sustainability, conservation, online marketplaces, education, economic development, sustainable agriculture, and green real estate.

Heidi Patel teaches (and co-created) a course on impact investing at the Stanford University Graduate School of Business and she serves on the Investment Committee for the Stanford GSB Student Impact Fund. Heidi is an advisor to Impact America (another women-led impact investing firm) and Better Ventures ( a seed stage impact fund) and an active member of AllRaise, co-leading their Community and Partnerships efforts. Heidi’s work in social enterprise and impact investing has been featured in the Wall St Journal, NPR’s Marketplace, Fox Business News, Forbes.com, Huffington Post, and the Acumen Fund blog. Heidi earned an AB from Princeton University and an MBA from the Graduate School of Business at Stanford University.

Peter Redford
TVI

Peter Redford, Partner, Band of Angels, www.bandangels.com. Redford is a veteran Silicon Valley tech CEO, Xerox PARC alumnus, member of the Band of Angels venture capital fund, and intellectual property litigation expert.

Redford’s patents and technologies are licensed by most of the world’s top software, computer and consumer-electronics companies and are used by billions of people. Redford’s technology credits include: AutoPlay (Windows, all Blu-Ray players, all video game consoles), AirPlay (AppleTV), Sound Blaster, Flash (Adobe), LeapPad, GUI, and Netflix. Redford has a Masters in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from the University of California, Berkeley.

Max Shapiro
Keiretsu Forum

Max is a member of Keiretsu Forum, a global investment community of accredited private equity angel investors, venture capitalists, and corporate/institutional investors.

Max is also the founder and CEO of PeopleConnect, bringing remarkable energy, a rare blend of experience, a sense of creativity, and a tenaciousness that has made it possible for many startups and established companies to add key talent to their teams. A lifelong entrepreneur, a consummate networker and a business strategist, Max understands the minds and passions of startups and companies focused on growth. Max has always been an expert in finding talent; he was the youngest talent scout in the history of the NBA, serving as Chief Scout for the Phoenix Suns. He owned and operated a company that produced sports camps for children, and baseball and basketball fantasy camps for adults, where he partnered with some of the biggest names in sports, including Mickey Mantle, Willie Mays, Pat Riley, Magic Johnson, John Wooden, and Billy Casper.

Max founded PeopleConnect Staffing in 1998, where he currently focuses on business development and client relations. He is an active member of several angel investment groups, and his passion for finding talent extends to introducing PeopleConnect clients to the professional resources they need to bring their company to the next level.

Kumar Sripadam
TiE Angels

Kumar Sripadam is a technology entrepreneur, business consultant, investor and mentor. He transacts his business operations through Kedge LLC. He has 27 years of experience in the high technology sector.

Kumar Sripadam is an advisor at Moesif, Inc. He served on the board of Metacert and Incentive Logic Inc. He is also involved with many early to mid-stage companies such as Moesif, Palmstar Media Capital, Outdu, Appensure. Some his key investments currently are Docusign, Pipedrive, PeriscopeData, Iterable, Pubnub, Wanderu, Cloudera, Paystand, Openbucks, Intellivison, MobileForceSoftware, Crowded, Skulpt, Bioz, YouPlus, Goombal, SyncOnset, Rigado, Crater, Lomics, Spanugo, Back4App, Whistler.io etc. He is an active investor and an LP at The Hive, The Fabric, Angel Round Capital Fund (ArcAngels), Streamlined Ventures, AngelPad, BluePointe Ventures, MontaVista Capital, TiE LaunchPad etc. His other investments include IFLY Silicon Valley, IFLY Hollywood, Palmstar Media Capital, SBPacificGroup etc.

Jennifer Vancini
Mighty Capital

Jennifer is a General Partner with Mighty Capital, a venture capital firm that invests in companies building products that count: products that transform lives and create value at scale. She has 20+ years of extensive experience in business and corporate development, and has served on corporate and academic boards.

Jennifer has held executive roles in start-ups and innovation units such as Price Waterhouse, Certicom, Symbian/Nokia, and Telefonica. Jennifer is also the Managing Partner of Pointgrey Partners, a family-office fund that primarily invests in seed stage companies, including several Canadian ventures.

Ron Weissman
Band of Angels

Dr. Ronald Weissman has more than 25 years of experience in investment and executive management. Since 2000 he has been a partner at a global venture capital and private equity firm, Apax Partners, where he focused cross-border deals and portfolio support and on software investing. Through his VC and his angel activity Ron has invested in or advised more than 60 companies and has served on more than 25 private companies.

His investment focus is on software, analytics, SaaS, text technologies and health IT. He is Chairman of the Software Special Interest Group of the Band of Angels, Silicon Valley’s oldest Angel group and a model for angel groups worldwide. His most recent angel investments include Decision Next (supply chain analytics), Practice Fusion (electronic medical records), Navera (employee benefits portfolio management), Gainsight (customer revenue optimization), Poetic Brands (food products), Wingtip (hybrid men’s furnishings and men’s club) Taulia (dynamic invoicing and payment management) and Sonim (ruggedized telephony). Before joining Verity, Ron spent more than five years working directly for Steve Jobs at NeXT, where he managed European and corporate marketing.

A business advisor and frequent conference speaker, Ron has published and lectured extensively on venture capital and angel investing, entrepreneurship, corporate governance and software trends. He frequently guest lectures at Stanford and UC Berkeley and at the University of Santa Clara’s Law School and Business School on venture capital and on corporate governance. He is currently advising public storage leader Western Digital’s HGST business unit on its vertical market strategy a private, venture-funded technology leader Druva on its core markets, a European leader in maritime commercial applications of the Internet of Things and an award-winning Canadian bioscience firm exploring the predictive use of Big Data to drug toxicity.

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