Season 2 Finale features:
Brian Watson is the Director of Partnerships at Visual Supply Company - the makers of the hit photo app VSCO Cam. He’s formerly an investment analyst at Union Square Ventures, the powerhouse VC firm led by Fred Wilson and boasting early investments in Soundcloud and Twitter. Brian and I discuss the Detroit tech scene, Paul Judge quotes, and the need for external validation.
Richard Kerby is a venture capitalist and Vice President at Venrock, the venture firm located in Palo Alto. He’s been profiled by CNN, and TheSearchLights Project, he’s also been a guest contributor to TechCrunch - which we’ll discuss. As a VC, his focus is on early stage startups as he bounces from New York to Silicon Valley, while keeping his eye on all points in between.
Dwayne Reeves is a software engineering lead at Facebook based in Menlo Park, CA. He's also an MIT grad and one of the poster boys for successful blacks in tech. We discuss his daily responsibilities at Facebook, the lost dreams of Google, imposter syndrome and Christian hip hop.
Ashley Nelson-Hornstein is an iOS engineer at Dropbox - another of my favorite startups. Previous to Dropbox, she spent time at Apple and the news startup, Circa. She’s not only an incredibly talented developer, she also evangelizes for Dropbox around the world speaking at tech conferences. Her popularity is growing - along with the products she builds.
Frederick Hutson is the founder and CEO at Pigeonly - which is a startup that creates tech products designed to help prisoners communicate. Beyond the ingenuity of his ideas, Frederick himself is an anomaly. Once just a budding entrepreneur in his 20’s, his entrepreneurial spunk was exercised in an industry that landed him behind bars with a sentence of 51 months. But, Mr. Hutson prevails, and he’s fresh out of Y Combinator and fueled by not a little bit of investment dollars.
Aston Motes was employee #1 at the quote - unquote ‘Unicorn’ startup Dropbox. This is a startup he helped usher into the billion-dollar club. An MIT grad and drummer - we deliberate about curiosity, posit black music, and thrash out starting startups where competition is already heavy.
Grant Oladipo is an MIT grad and serves as the mobile lead at Medium, founded by Ev Williams - the co-founder and former CEO at Twitter. Medium classifies itself as a new place on the internet where people share ideas and stories that are longer than 140 characters, and not just for friends.
On this episode, we discuss how to find your way in San Fransisco, his favorite books, and keeping focus on your startup.
Baratunde Thurston is a writer, comedian, podcaster, startup founder, and New York Times bestselling author. We chatted about success and failure, as well as his startup Cultivated Wit.