STEM People You Should Know: Founders, Funders and Angel Investors

Aaron Walker, Camelback Ventures

From our Winter 2017 edition of The Network Journal, below is a compilation of Black founders, funders and angel investors you should know.


Ali Abdullah, CEO, Claim it!, a mobile-app

company. After a $2.5 million series seed

funding round led by Newark Venture

Partners, Claim it! launched a new version

of its app for “free stuff” via the Apple App



Ali Abdullah, CEO, Claim It!


William Adams (, STEM-education

advocate, Foundation.

Multi-faceted entertainer; frontman for The

Black Eyed Peas.



Kwame Anku, founding principal, Black

Angel Tech Fund, a startup, tech fund for

Black Stanford University students funded

by alumni.


Kwame Anku, Black Angel Tech Fund


Troy Carter, global head of creator services,

Spotify, the music, podcast and video

streaming service.


Troy Carter, founder, chairman and CEO of Atom Factory



Kesha Cash, founder/general partner,

Impact America Fund, a private-equity

and venture-capital firm specializing in

early-stage investments in health and wellness,

education, essential services and

financial inclusion. It prefers to invest in

businesses run by minorities in low-income



Kesha Cash, founder/general partner, Impact America Fund


McKeever E. Conwell II, portfolio manager/

deal-team coordinator, Maryland

Technology Development Corporation

(TEDCO). As a member of the seed-investment

team, he helps to source, evaluate

and make investment decisions in earlystage

technology companies in Maryland.

Manager, Minority Business Pre-seed Fund

that makes investments of up to $40,000.


Valerie Mosley, chairman/CEO, Valmo

Ventures, which creates, collaborates with

and invests in companies, assets and efforts

that have significant potential to grow, profit

and add value to society. Previously partner/

senior vice president/investment strategist

at Wellington Management Co. L.L.P., an

$800-billion, global, money-management



E. Scott Morris, senior footwear creative

director, Designer ESM. Previously senior

creative director of footwear design, Under

Armour, and design manager, Nike Inc.

E. Scott Morris, Designer ESM


Janice Omadeke, founder/CEO, The

Mentor Method, a Washington, D.C. startup

to create inclusive workplace cultures

through mentoring diverse tech talent.


Janice Omadeke, founder/CEO, The Mentor Method


Adeleke Omitowoju, early-stage venture

strategist; co-founder, Ghost Note, a

communications and development agency

in Washington, D.C., leading its diversityin-

technology initiative (Technoir) that raises

funds to help seed early-stage startups.


Shauntel Poulson, co-founder/partner,

Reach Capital, a Silicon Valley, early-stage

investor in education-technology startups

that create access and opportunity for

kindergarten through 12th grade students.


David H. Rice, president, Design

Communications Inc. (DesignCom);

founder/chair, Organization of Black

Designers, which currently numbers 8,700

members nationally and lists a database of

more than 48,000 African-American

designers. OBD produces DesigNation, the

only national conference for designers that

promotes diversity throughout the entirety

of design professions.


Angel Rich, founder/CEO, The Wealth

Factory Inc., designer of financial literacy

and workforce development education

technology games; co-founder,

Creditstacker, a credit reporting and scoring

app to help students better understand

how to use credit wisely. It’s the only

mobile credit game on Google Play and IOS

for free.


Angel Rich, founder & CEO, The Wealthy Factory


Rodney Sampson, founder/CEO, Opportunity

Hub, an inclusive tech and startup

ecosystem building in Atlanta offering coworking

and office space, intense entrepreneurship,

coding and investment training

and programming, a pre-accelerator and




Aaron Saunders, award-winning tech

entrepreneur whose companies include

Clearly Innovative, a mobile app agency;

Luma Lab, a tech and entrepreneurship

education program; In3, the nation’s first

“inclusive innovation incubator;” and

KissIntel, a dating, relationship-management

and romance-enhancement mobile



Aaron Saunders, Clearly Innovative


Chief Warrant Officer (CWO-5) Valencia

Simmons-Fowler, technical specialist,

U.S. Navy, the first African-American

woman to achieve the highest chief warrant

officer rank in the information warfare



Thomas Stovall, founder, Imblackintech

Membership Network, a global membership

organization for Black and Latinx

founders of emerging tech startups and technology



Thomas Stovall, Imblackintech


Stefanie A. Thomas, senior associate,

Impact America Fund; hailed as a voice of

“Black Women VCs” (Fast Company) who

work at the intersection of founder diversity,

technology for impact and the deployment

of capital within untapped markets.


Aaron Walker, founder/CEO, Camelback

Ventures, a nonprofit, social-venture fellowship

and seed fund using donations provided

by various foundations, corporations

and individuals to make investments in

promising ventures by entrepreneurs who

are from communities of color, female or



Aaron Walker, Camelback Ventures


Denmark West, partner, Connectivity

Capital Partners L.L.C., an advisory firm

providing venture capital, technology,

investment banking and recruiting services;

chief investment officer, Connectivity

Ventures Fund, which was launched by the

principals of Connectivity Capital Partners.


Aniyia L. Williams, founder/CEO, Tinsel,

which creates tech jewelry for women,

including an audio necklace that has the full

functionality of headphones; founder/executive

director, Black & Brown Founders,

which aims to provide Black and Latinx

founders resources and networks for starting

companies without relying on venture



Aniyia Williams, Black & Brown Founders


(*Compiled by Rosalind McLymont)