Catalyst is a global nonprofit working with some of the world’s most powerful CEOs and leading companies to help build workplaces that work for women. Founded in 1962, Catalyst drives change with proven, action-oriented research, tools, and solutions to accelerate and advance women into leadership—because progress for women is progress for everyone.

Opportunities for Engagement

VC Firms
Catalyst is supported by more than 800 organizations around the world that collectively employ millions of people. We achieve our mission by partnering with our supporters to make positive change in their organizations. We provide learning programs and platforms to:

  • Diagnose barriers and help build inclusive cultures.
  • Develop and deliver effective programs to reduce workplace barriers for women.
  • Help companies advance women at every stage of their careers into leadership.
  • Advise organizations on building robust and diverse boards.
  • Give companies and CEOs the trusted advice and expertise they need to drive workplace talent transformations in complex, global businesses.

Men in VC
Men Advocating Real Change (MARC) is committed to achieving workplace equality through effective gender partnership. Gender inequality negatively impacts the success of organizations, men’s relationships with colleagues, the time men spend with their families, and even men’s personal health. This is why men must be part of the solution. MARC’s suite of programming brings thought leaders together to create deeper engagement. In everything we do, from our online community, to our premier workshops, to our grassroots teams, we seek to foster effective partnership between genders and create in-person connections to support direct actions and solutions.

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With over 6,000 members globally and 16 chapters, UPWARD is the only global network supporting the career advancement of executive women. The organization provides an encouraging environment to build trusted relationships, share ideas, and learn new skills. For women in VC specifically, UPWARD provides a specialized track of programming that fosters the skills, knowledge, and connections necessary for success in this industry. UPWARD’s mission is to accelerate career advancement for executive women by:

  • Creating collaborative meet UP gatherings to learn from leaders and to increase networking
  • Cultivating events that build UP members through focused conversations about their professional development
  • Nurturing relationships that help members move UP into the executive ranks during their careers

Opportunities for Engagement

Women in VC
As a membership-based organization, UPWARD develops programming to support its members to Meet UP, Build UP, and Move UP in their professional careers. These programs include: Executive Leadership Training, Mentoring Clinics, Career Development Workshops, Topical Discussions, Table of 10 C-Suite Dinners, Small Group Forums, and our annual Gala Dinners.

Members have access to industry-specific special interest groups (SIG), including one focused on venture capital (VC). As part of the VC SIG, UPWARD brings prominent VCs to keynote events, provides programming to educate and connect entrepreneurs with investors, and to train women seeking VC careers how to thrive in that industry. Women in VC who are interested in participating in these opportunities should apply for UPWARD membership. Membership is free!

Firms & Companies
UPWARD is building community within our member companies with customized diversity and inclusion programming. We work with organizations to understand their objectives, core values, and pain points to create customized programming, leveraging our resources, and track record of delivering high quality events and training to our members. Through these corporate programs, we are helping to shape corporate culture and to create an environment where executive women can thrive. If your firm is interested in participating in these programs, please email us at

Men in VC (SF Bay Area)
If women are to make significant progress in the advancement of their careers, securing the engagement and support of men is vital. In 2019, UPWARD launched its first UPWARD Men Chapter in the San Francisco Bay Area. UPWARD Men participate in programming, and encourage and support UPWARD Women. UPWARD Men engage by:

  • Speaking UP and being vocal advocates for women’s career advancement
  • Building UP women through mentorship, sponsorship, and partnership
  • Standing UP for the advancement of women in leadership roles and with gender inclusion programs

Male allies who want to support the advancement of their female colleagues are encouraged to become members of an UPWARD Men chapter. Membership is free.

With over 6,000 members globally and 16 chapters, UPWARD is the only global network supporting the career advancement of executive women. The organization provides an encouraging environment to build trusted relationships, share ideas, learn new skills, and grow your career while navigating today’s challenging business world. UPWARD’s mission is to accelerate career advancement for executive women by:

  • Creating collaborative meet UP gatherings to learn from leaders and to increase networking
  • Cultivating events that build UP members through focused conversations about their professional development
  • Nurturing relationships that help members move UP into the executive ranks during their careers

In our venture capital SIG, we’ve created programming to educate and connect entrepreneurs with VC investors and to train women seeking VC careers on how to thrive in that industry. Our founder is a very successful venture capitalist and a member of the NVCA board of directors, who has invested in entrepreneurs for over 20-years. She brings a wealth of knowledge and experience that she frequently shares with our members. UPWARD has also had several prominent VC firms featured in our events, including in 2019 having Jim Geotz, General Partner at Sequoia Capital, give a keynote address at our annual Gala Dinner in Los Gatos. We’ve also had Andreessen Horowitz host a VC panel featuring top tier women investors Ann Winblad (Hummer Winblad), Theresa Gouw (formerly Accel, and currently Aspect Ventures), and Aileen Lee (formerly KPCB, currently Cowboy Ventures). Sequoia Capital’s newest general partner, Jess Lee, also keynoted at an UPWARD event hosted at our founder’s residence, where she shared her journey from entrepreneurship to venture capital. We’ve also had firms such as Norwest Venture Partners and Ignition Partners, sponsor our events and numerous panels featuring women start-up founders and CEOs. The engagement across the VC and entrepreneur community with UPWARD is extensive and very compelling.

With men holding over 80% of the executive level positions in most companies, women will be assured success with them as our allies. Bringing men along will create the disruption needed to make significant progress for women in leadership. By bridging the professional gap between women and men in a supportive and intentional way, we will achieve success. This is even more imperative in the venture capital industry, because VC is the seed capital for funding the next generation of leaders and new businesses.

Contact Information

If you’d like to learn more about UPWARD, please see us at and



The Oral History Center at UC Berkeley

The Oral History Center (OHC), a division of The Bancroft Library, documents the history of California, the nation, and the interconnected global arena. OHC produces carefully researched, audio/video-recorded and transcribed oral histories and interpretative historical materials for the widest possible use.

OHC has carried out interviews in a variety of major subject areas, including but not limited to: politics and government; business and labor; social and community history; science, medicine, and technology; and venture capital.

Early Bay Area Venture Capitalists: Shaping the Business and Industrial Landscape” documents through videotaped interviews with the first generation of venture capitalists, the origins and evolution of the venture capital industry in California during the 1960s and 1970s.

The project explores and explains through the words of participants how venture capital originated in the Bay Area, its intersection with national legislation and policy, the significance of its location, and its role in creating the electronics and biotechnology industries in California.


The Toigo Foundation’s goal is to encourage diversity and social responsibility amongst the top echelons of leadership across all industries. Toigo is highly regarded for its innovative programming and services that meet the needs of both the supply and demand side of the diversity problem in finance.

Opportunities for Engagement

Underrepresented MBA Students
Toigo has a 30-year history supporting minority MBA students to foster their career advancement and increased leadership in the financial services industry across asset classes. Toigo’s fellowship program offers a merit-based recognition award, leadership development training, and extensive career support. Most importantly, Toigo Fellows become part of one of the nation’s most highly regarded and dynamic network of minority professionals. Become a Toigo Fellow to access training, career development, and the Toigo alumni network.

VC Firms & Employers
Toigo creates a tailored engagement package designed to maximize the firm’s exposure and access to Toigo MBA Fellows seeking a career in venture capital and Toigo Alumni who are seasoned investment professionals – some with more than 15 years of post-MBA finance expertise. Firms also have the opportunity to post job openings on the Toigo job bank.

There are many important ways individuals can become engaged with Toigo, from participation in our educational programming (including speaking at our events and webinars) to providing financial support for our Fellows during the academic careers, or serving in a mentoring capacity. With respect to mentoring, professionals from the financial industry are recruited as needed to coach, counsel and support Fellows throughout their MBA careers and beyond. Mentors provide professional and personal support and guidance to their assigned Fellow or group of Fellows. Mentors serve formally during the students’ graduate studies, but in many cases become lifelong friends and colleagues. There is also informal mentoring for post graduate professionals who seek more experienced advice and counsel.

Contact Information


Convened by an alliance between LA’s venture capital community, Annenberg Foundation, and the Office of Mayor Eric Garcetti, PledgeLA is a collective call for change in the tech industry and a commitment to better reflect, support, and leverage the creativity and diversity that is Los Angeles.

This coalition of more than 200 tech & VC industry leaders seeks to positively contribute to the prosperity of all Angelenos and lead the industry into a new dawn of equity and inclusion.

Opportunities for Engagement

Los Angeles-Based Venture Capital and Technology Companies
Join PledgeLA as a member! PledgeLA members commit to transforming Los Angeles into the most civically engaged and diverse tech hub in the nation. Member companies receive support in deepening their social impact, finding diverse talent and creative inclusive workplaces where everyone can thrive. Membership also secures access to a top-notch survey providing your company with clear metrics around community engagement and diversity, equity, and inclusion.

We are always looking for partners who can help us advance the mission of PledgeLA. We are most interested in volunteer opportunities for our members and resources to educate our base about issues facing Angelenos. If you’re a non-profit organization interested in partnering with PledgeLA, please reach out to

Underrepresented VCs, Founders, and Entrepreneurs
PledgeLA hosts impact-aligned events which support access to increasing diversity across VC and the tech industry, facilitates connections to nonprofits, shares internship & mentorship opportunities supporting underrepresented groups, and more. Sign up to receive email updates with all the latest PledgeLA news, program updates, and opportunities to get involved.

Contact Information

CHM: Venture Capital Initiative

The Computer History Museum (CHM) decodes technology—its computing past, digital present, and future impact on humanity. It’s home to the Exponential Center, the first museum institution devoted to capturing the legacy and advancing the future of entrepreneurship and innovation in Silicon Valley and around the world.

The Exponential Center is leading an ambitious program to capture and share the stories of pioneering venture capitalists and their partnerships with disruptors and innovators that extend from idea to IPO and beyond. Through a variety of activities that capitalize on the Museum’s core strengths, the center explores what the industry does, how it works, and what happens when venture capitalists and entrepreneurs join forces to create a company.

Through a partnership with the National Venture Capital Association (NVCA), the Exponential Center has received copyright ownership of 17 noteworthy oral histories of pioneering venture capitalists that will be preserved and made accessible online. Featured luminaries include Richard C. Kramlich of New Enterprise Associates, James Swartz of Accel Partners, Charles L. Lea Jr. of Bessemer, and more.

The Computer History Museum is actively adding oral histories of key players in venture capital to the Museum’s renowned collection. They are available to researchers and for events and educational programs designed to share key insights about the industry. Video interviews and transcripts are freely available online. See the full list of CHM venture capital oral histories.

Contact Information

Project Include

Project Include’s mission is to give everyone a fair chance to succeed in tech. They use data and advocacy to accelerate meaningful diversity and inclusion solutions for tech CEO’s and startups. They provide specific, actionable recommendations through their website and industry diversity benchmarks through their blog. Through case studies, research, and networking opportunities, the nonprofit has built a thriving community of grassroots advocates, experts, and practitioners working together to evolve these solutions. They encourage the values of inclusion, comprehensiveness, and accountability.

Opportunities for Engagement

VC Firms
Project Include provides resources and guidelines to help VC firms monitor and measure their own behavior and results. VCs and VC firms can take advantage of Project Include’s concrete recommendations and actionable strategies on D&I work, concrete VC investing metrics, and benchmarks for startup demographics. With #MovingForward, they also have useful guidelines for VC codes of conduct.

Founders & CEOs
Project Include brings together CEOs and leaders who can join a cohort of their peers to gather data on your teams and contribute to aggregated results to set industry standards. Read the Project Include recommendations on topics including: defining and implementing culture, writing a code of conduct, employee lifecycle, providing feedback, training, investing in sponsorships, and resolving conflicts.  And read why startups should set diversity targets for an employee base that is 10% Black, 10% Latinx, and 5% non-binary in addition to 45% female.

Employees & Job-Seekers
Explore various case studies that identify different kinds of workplace discrimination and learn what steps to take to encourage a more inclusive work environment.

Contact Information

Emerging Venture Capitalists Association (EVCA)

The Emerging Venture Capitalists Association (“EVCA”) is a non-profit professional group for pre-partner venture capitalists (analyst, associate, principal, or vice president) working full-time for SEC-accredited venture firms. The community is managed on Slack and facilitates continuing education and social programing through thirteen industry verticals that organize topic-specific speaker series, panels, workshops, and themed dinners.

Opportunities for Engagement

Pre-Partner VC’s at SEC-Accredited Firms
Investors interested in participating in our educational and social programming can email to receive an application form for membership.

Contact Information


Founded in 2009, StartOut, a national non-profit organization, is the largest national organization to support LGBTQ+ entrepreneurs with 17,000 members. Its mission is to increase the number, diversity, and impact of LGBTQ+ entrepreneurs and amplify their stories to drive the economic empowerment of the community. StartOut helps aspiring LGBTQ+ entrepreneurs start new companies; supports current entrepreneurs as they grow and expand their existing businesses; and engages successful entrepreneurs as role models and mentors.

Opportunities for Engagement

StartOut teams up with VCs who want access to a diverse deal flow and are interested in working with LGBTQ founders (pre-seed to Series B). StartOut also works with associates, principals and partners who are interested in mentoring high-potential entrepreneurs on an individual basis.

LGBTQ Entrepreneurs
StartOut provides access to expertise (mentorship and office hours), networking opportunities (events, online directory and online forum), and connections to accredited investors to LGBTQ growth entrepreneurs.

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#MovingForward is a global social movement using policy to create a more diverse, inclusive, and harassment-free venture capital industry.

Opportunities for Engagement

VC Firms
#MovingForward helps VC firms shape and publish policies related to harassment and discrimination that apply to third-parties like entrepreneurs. We currently partner with 150 venture capital firms in 23 countries. Joining is easy: we help you create the required materials for free. Visit or email us via to learn more.

VC Professionals, Tech Professionals, and MBAs
Project #MovingForward is a social movement working to make policies in venture capital more inclusive and available. We’re run by an all-volunteer team of entrepreneurs, investors, and technologists, and we’re always recruiting new volunteers to join the movement. If you care about taking action on diversity & inclusion and connecting with VCs and entrepreneurs who share these values, you’d be a great fit. Email us via to learn more.

Project #MovingForward is a social movement working to make policies in venture capital more inclusive and available. We built the first open source policy archive in VC, and we want to continue building tools that will be of use to entrepreneurs in their interactions with investors. If you have ideas of tools that would be helpful or want to join our mailing list to receive our updates, email us via

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high-growth startups—across all 50 states and DC—raised venture funding in 2019 to build and grow their businesses.


of all U.S. IPOs from 1974 to 2015 were venture-backed companies, representing 63% of the market capitalization and 85% of R&D.

2.9 million

is the average net jobs created annually between 1980 and 2010 by high-growth startups, which account for ~50% of gross jobs created in the U.S.


U.S. venture firms are active today, managing an aggregate of $444 billion in assets.