Keller Center - Educating Leaders for a Technology-Driven Society

Women in Entrepreneurship: A Panel Discussion

Women in Entrepreneurship: A Panel Discussion

Women in Entrepreneurship Event PosterDate: Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Time: 5 p.m.

Location: Bowen Hall Auditorium (Room 222)

(campus map)

Other: Reception to follow

The Keller Center will host a panel of women entrepreneurs and venture capitalists in the Bowen Hall Auditorium on Wednesday, December 7, 2011.  The panelists, at various stages in their careers, will share experiences on entrepreneurship. 

The event is sponsored by the Keller Center, the NJ Jumpstart Angel Network, and the lawfirm Drinker Biddle & Reath, LLP, and will be followed by a light reception in the Bowen Hall Atrium. For more information or directions to Bowen Hall, please contact Stephanie Landers at or call 609-258-3979. 

Speaker Bios 

Kef Kasdin '85, General Partner at Battelle Ventures (Moderator)
As one of the founding general partners of Battelle Ventures, Kef Kasdin focuses on investments in communications and cleantech, and has started several companies based on technologies and capabilities at research institutions.  Kef currently serves on the Boards of Directors of Aldis, Inc.; Ampulse Corp.; Planar Energy; Proterro, Inc. and Rajant Corp. She also is CEO of Proterro. Active in the venture community, she sits on the Boards of Directors of the National Association of Seed and Venture Funds, and of Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Southeastern Pennsylvania.   Kef has been developing and executing strategy for technology-based companies for almost 25 years, including at 3Com Corp., where she was the General Manager of a $1B business unit as well as the company's first Executive in Residence. Kef holds a B.S.E degree in operations research from Princeton University and an MBA from the Graduate School of Business, Stanford University.

Alexandra Landon '12, Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering; Co-President, Princeton  Entrepreneurship Club
Alex is a Princeton University senior from Friendswood, TX. She is studying Mechanical Engineering and pursuing certificates in Sustainable Energy and Spanish. Alex is Co-President of the Entrepreneurship Club, former Undergraduate Chair of Students United for a Responsible Global Environment, and Co-Founder of Leadership for Change. After graduation, Alex plans to join Clean Line Energy Partners as an analyst.

Joy Marcus '83, Partner, DFJ Gotham Ventures
Joy Marcus joined DFJ Gotham Ventures as a Venture Partner in May 2011. Prior to Gotham, Joy was General Manager, US for video website Dailymotion, from its US launch through its acquisition by Orange (France Telecom) in January 2011. Prior to Dailymotion, Joy was SVP Global Marketing at Time Warner where she worked closely with major advertising clients on integrated marketing campaigns. An industry veteran, Joy served as VP Business Development of Barnes&, which she helped take public in 1999, and was VP International Business Development at MTV Networks, facilitating the launch of new channels around the world. She began her career as an M&A lawyer at Debevoise & Plimpton. Joy was named to the Digital Power 50 by the Hollywood Reporter in 2009 and 2010, and is a regularly featured speaker at industry events including OMMA, NATPE and Digital Hollywood. She is a graduate of Princeton University and New York University School of Law. 

*Kathleen DeRose '83, Golden Seeds
Kathleen Traynor DeRose, CFA is a Managing Director and the Head of Global Investment Process at Credit Suisse Asset Management. Prior to this role she was the Managing Partner and Head of Portfolio Management and Research at a hedge fund. Prior to that, Kathleen was a Managing Director at Bessemer Trust, where she was the Head of Large Capitalization Equities and managed $8 billion in high net worth client portfolios.  Prior to Bessemer, she spent twelve years at Deutsche Bank. Kathleen started her career at Chase Manhattan Bank, where she was an analyst and portfolio manager. Kathleen founded the "Kathleen Traynor Research Fund" at Princeton's Bendheim Center for Finance, which supports women students in finance. She is the founder of "WOW" an invitation-only forum for senior women executives. Kathleen is on the board of Non-traditional Employment for Women (NEW) a New York City not-for-profit. She is also a member of Golden Seeds and CTI Invest has coached women entrepreneurs for both Astia and Springboard. Kathleen has an undergraduate degree from Princeton University in American History and an MBA from the London School of Economics, Haute Ecole Commerciale in France, and NYU's Stern School (TRIUM program). 

Mei Shibata, Chief Strategy Officer, ThinkEco
Mei leads the business side of ThinkEco where her broad experience has helped to shape the modlet system into a hip, user-friendly product. Most recently, she was Managing Director of Strategy and Strategic Planning at communications agency Euro RSCG Life, where she helped numerous brand teams commercialize their products and lead them through lifecycle management. Mei also has broad corporate experience, including her Worldwide Marketing role at Pfizer and equity research work at Citigroup. Mei received her MBA from Harvard Business School and her BA (physics) and MS (medical engineering, HST) from Harvard University.

Cari Sommer, Co-Founder, Urban Interns
Cari is a lawyer-turned-entrepreneur and the Co-Founder of Urban Interns, an angel funded Internet marketplace that connects growing companies with part-time help and interns.  Launched in 2009, the company began in New York City and over the past three years, has expanded throughout the country.  Cari also advises other start-ups on how to leverage powerful content, thought leadership and top-notch publicity to achieve strong word of mouth awareness. Prior to Urban Interns, Cari was the Director of Business Development at Lexolution, a national contract legal staffing firm.  She began her career as a bankruptcy and commercial litigator. Throughout her career, Cari has been deeply committed to community philanthropy. She is a mentor-advisor to entrepreneurs in Cornell e-Lab, an undergraduate incubator. From 2006-2009, she served as the Chair of the New York Board of Directors of Step Up Women's Network, a national nonprofit dedicated to connecting and advancing women and girls. During her time as Chair, Step Up's membership increased by 400 percent and the fundraising doubled. Cari is a graduate of Cornell University and Brooklyn Law School.

*Please note that Kathleen DeRose '83 is now unable to participate on the panel and Cari Sommers will be joining. Cari brings to the table a wealth of knowledge and expertise in the area of technology startups and other high growth organizations.