July Funding Pathways: Dorm Room Fund, Emerson Collective, Mercury Bank 馃捀



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鈥嬧嬧媁hen it comes to money for startups, there's no shortage of options - from crowdfunding sites like Kickstarter, equity funding models such as convertible debt, friends & family rounds, smaller VCs, grants and even angel investment networks. 馃挵 Join us for our funding pathways event series for a panel with industry leaders so you can find out which path is right for you! 馃殌

This month's speakers:

Joanna Lichter is an early-stage investor at Emerson Collective, the family office of Laurene Powell Jobs that invests in companies positively impacting the world and helping people to live to their full potential. Prior to Emerson, Joanna was an investor at Founder Collective, a seed-stage VC fund based in New York. Before that, Joanna worked at Via Transportation, a global mobility and transit startup. Joanna received her MBA from MIT Sloan and her B.A. in International Comparative Studies and Spanish from Duke University.

Melissa Li is聽Head of Community and Managing Partner for Dorm Room Fund, the leading university-focused venture fund spun out of First Round Capital. In her role,聽Melissa leads strategy and partnerships for founder support, platform offerings and university engagement. To date, DRF-backed companies have raised $2.5B+ in follow-on capital and captured $8.3B+ in value. Outside of Dorm Room Fund, Melissa is passionate聽about helping founders build highly engaged communities, previously advising on community and growth across the Metaverse, retail and media spaces. In her spare time, Melissa serves as a mentor to early-stage founder cohorts including Founder Institute and the DayOne Fellowship, where she focuses on startup storytelling and customer love.聽

Jason Garcia is leading Mercury's efforts at building alternative financing products for founders. He has nearly a decade of experience at firms like Silicon Valley Bank, Indie.vc, KPMG, and Goldman Sachs. He鈥檚 also spent time at startups, once as a senior member at Divvy and twice as a SaaS CFO, and has spent his career advising and connecting startups to the right types of debt for their needs.聽聽

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