FOUNDING INVESTORS


We are grateful for the support of our founding investors - inspirational philanthropists, entrepreneurs, business, and community leaders.

 
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TODD DAGRES | Co-Founder and General Partner, Spark Capital      

Todd is the Co-founder and Chairman of Power Launch. Todd envisioned a venture philanthropy fund to help promising social impact ventures access needed resources through social impact competitions and organizational development support. As Founder and General Partner of Spark Capital, Todd seeks out startups capable of achieving huge impact by enabling people in emerging or underserved markets through access to life-changing products and services. Among Todd's investments are Jana, 1stdibs, Benu Networks, Covestor (Interactive Brokers), Drop Messages, Kateeva, Signpost and Verivue (Akamai). Before co-founding Spark Capital, Todd was a General Partner at Battery Ventures, where he led investments in Akamai Technologies (NASDAQ: AKAM), Arbor Networks (Donaher), Broadbus (Motorola), Redstone (Siemans), River Delta Networks (Motorola), Qtera (Nortel Networks) and XCOM (Level 3 Communications). Earlier in his career, Todd was a Senior Technology Analyst at Montgomery Securities, Smith Barney and Yankee Group. Todd has produced several feature films, including Pretty Persuasion, Transsiberian and Nothing Left to Fear. He is on the President's Advisory Board at Brigham and Women's Hospital and a member of Boston Children's Hospital Trust Board. Todd holds an M.B.A. from Boston University and a B.S. in Psychology from Trinity College where he played baseball.    

 

BOB DAVIS | General Partner, Highland Capital Partners

Bob is a General Partner at Highland focusing primarily on digital media and has been with Highland Capital's team since 2001. He currently represents Highland with ALOHA, FRESHLY, Gemvara, Harry's, OpenSky, Cover Wallet, Handy, Beeswax, Remix Media and SessionM. Bob previously served on the boards of Bullhorn, Going, Name Media, Navic, Pixable Quattro, Quigo and Turbine. Bob is the best-selling author of "Speed is Life: Street Smart Lessons from the Front Lines of Business". Prior to joining Highland, Bob served as the Chief Executive Officer of Terra Lycos formed in October 2000 with the $5.5 billion acquisition of Lycos by Telefonica’s Terra Networks of Spain. Previously, Bob was the Founder of Lycos, Inc. and served as its President and Chief Executive Officer since its inception in 1995 where he led Lycos from a start-up with $2 million in venture capital funding to become the most visited online destination in the world. Under his leadership, Lycos jumped from the fastest IPO in Nasdaq history, a mere nine months from inception to offering, exceeding Wall Street estimates for 22 consecutive quarters, and grew to a global media entity. Bob has also served on the boards of several public and private sector companies including John Hancock, Ticketmaster, Terra Lycos, Lycos and Lycos Europe. He is the President of The Rivers School Board of Trustees, and had previously served as a Trustee for Children’s Hospital Trust Board, and Board of Advisors for the Boston College Carroll School of Management. Bob has advised former President Clinton on matters relating to internet commerce and regulation and has addressed Congress, The United Nations, The National Press Corps and the U.S. Council of Foreign Relations on similar matters. Bob earned a B.S. from Northeastern University, an M.B.A. from Babson College, an Honorary Doctorate of Commercial Sciences from Bentley College and an Honorary Doctorate from Northeastern University. Bob has been inducted into the Academy of Distinguished Entrepreneurs and received the Massachusetts Interactive Media Council’s Lifetime Achievement Award.

 
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LAURA GASSNER OTTING | Founder and CEO, Limitless Possibility

Laura’s 25-year resume is defined by her entrepreneurial edge. She served as a Presidential Appointee in Bill Clinton’s White House, helping shape AmeriCorps; left a leadership role at respected nonprofit search firm, Isaacson, Miller, to expand the startup ExecSearches.com; and founded and ran the Nonprofit Professionals Advisory Group, which partnered with the full gamut of mission driven nonprofit executives, from start-up dreamers to scaling social entrepreneurs to global philanthropists. She is the author of Mission-Driven, a book for those who are moving from profit to purpose. Through her own commitment to give back, Laura has helped build a local Montessori school, co-founded a women’s philanthropic initiative, advised a start-up national women’s PAC, grew a citizen-leadership development program, and completed three charity-inspired marathons—projects emblematic of her passions and values. She’s turned on by the audacity of The Big Idea and that larger-than- life goal you just can’t seem to shake. She’s an instigator, a motivator, and a provocateur, and she’s never met a revolution she didn’t like.     

 
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PATRICK LYONS | CEO, The Lyons Group

Patrick Lyons is the CEO of the Lyons Group, which he founded in 1981. Patrick has over 30 years of hands on experience, starting as a bar back and eventually becoming a master in conceptualization, design, development, construction, marketing and operation of a wide variety of themed entertainment and dining facilities. Patrick has been repeatedly acknowledged as a leader in the creation, marketing and design of entertainment properties. In addition to a successful career, Patrick has been committed to civic engagement and philanthropic work for decades.

 

FRANK MOSS | Co-Founder and Chairman, Twine Health

Frank Moss has had a 35-year career as a high-tech, biotech and health-tech entrepreneur. He is the Co-founder and Chairman of Twine Health, Inc., which markets a digital healthcare platform for patient-centric care. He is also a co-founder Matter.io, a web-based service for small batch manufacturing for independent designers and small businesses. Moss is also on the board of ArtLifting. His previous startups include Stellar Computer, Bowstreet, Infinity Pharmaceuticals and Bluefin Labs. He served as director of the MIT Media Lab from 2006-2011 and was professor of the practice there, heading the New Media Medicine group from 2007 to 2013. He is the author of The Sorcerers and their Apprentices: How the Digital Magicians of the MIT Media Lab are Creating the Innovative Technologies That Will Transform our Lives. Moss began his career in IBM Research and served as CEO and chairman of Tivoli Systems Inc., a pioneer in distributed systems management, which he took public in 1995 and subsequently merged with IBM in 1996. Moss served on the board of trustees of Princeton from 2007-2011 and is currently a member of the leadership advisory councils of the Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center and the Princeton School of Engineering and Applied Science. Moss holds a BSE from Princeton in mechanical and aerospace engineering and a Ph.D. from MIT in Aeronautics and Astronautics.

 

COLETTE PHILLIPS | President and CEO, Colette Phillips Communications

Colette Phillips is the President and CEO of Colette Phillips Communications, Inc. an innovative strategic marketing/public relations company, and Founder of Get Konnected! She is widely respected and recognized for her amazing ability to build bridges and create sustainable cross-cultural and inter-racial business and social networks. She is trusted advisor, values-based leader and “change agent” who uses her influence and communications expertise on behalf of her clients to engage, enlighten, empower and educate multiple stakeholders on a variety of issues. She and her firm work with clients from a variety of industries from Fortune 500, mission-focused organizations, small businesses, world leaders, celebrities and “C’ suite executives to provide strategic and tactical support for stakeholder engagement, brand activation, reputation and crisis management, multicultural and inclusion communications and executive coaching. She has received numerous professional and civic awards including the 2016 New England Business Woman of the Year Award from Bryant College; the 2015 Lifetime Achievement Award for Diversity and Women of Influence Award from the Boston Business Journal; the Pinnacle Award from the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce; and the National Civic Achievement Award from the American Jewish Community. She holds a BS and MS from Emerson College and an Honorary Doctorate from Mount Ida College.     

 

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LINDA PIZZUTI HENRY | Managing Director, The Boston Globe

Linda Pizzuti Henry is the managing director of the Boston Globe. She is a co-founder of HUBweek, a partnership between the Boston Globe, Harvard University, MIT and Massachusetts General Hospital that explores the intersection of art, science and technology. In its inaugural year, HUBweek had more than 70 companies and institutions participate and over 46,000 people attend its events. Linda is also an early-stage impact investor, Emmy-winning television producer with two shows currently airing, and a community activist.  Linda serves as a trustee of the Liverpool Football Club Foundation, a director of the Red Sox Foundation, Chair of the Boston Globe Foundation, and Chairman of the John W. Henry Family Foundation.  In addition, Linda is a founder of the Boston Public Market and a member of the Advisory Board of MassChallenge. Linda received a Bachelor of Science Degree from Babson College and her Masters Degree from MIT.

 

PAUL SAGAN | Executive in Residence, General Catalyst Partners

Paul Sagan is an Executive in Residence at General Catalyst Partners in Cambridge, MA. From 1998 until 2013, Paul was a member of the executive team of Akamai Technologies, Inc., a leading Internet services company based in Cambridge, where his responsibilities included serving as CEO, president and chief operating officer. Prior to joining Akamai, Sagan served in various executive positions at Time Warner Cable and Time Inc., where he helped to found several Internet businesses. Paul was also a senior advisor to the World Economic Forum, and he has served on the boards of numerous advisory panels and educational organizations including the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Northwestern University, the Alliance for Business Leadership, Massachusetts Business Leaders for Charter Public Schools, and the National Security Telecommunications Advisory Committee. In addition, Paul is a director of three public companies, Akamai and EMC, with headquarters in Massachusetts, and VMware. He is also a director of two private companies: Datto and L2. He received a Bachelor of Science in Journalism from Northwestern University, and was a Fellow at the Shorenstein Center at the Harvard University Kennedy School of Government. He was recently appointed by Governor Baker as the chair of the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education.