02/12/14 | Uncategorized

8 Top Female VCs and Founders I Nominate for Next Year’s Crunchies

The Crunchies could use some more female faces. One startup VP suggests some women she’d like to see on stage next year. 

By Christina LaMontagne (Vice President, NerdWallet

Monday night the Bay Area tech scene was feted with a much anticipated and very fun night out — the 7th Annual Crunchies. TechCrunch, together with its generous sponsors, honored many of the year’s best and brightest innovators, technologists, and leaders.

The Daily Show’s John Oliver kept us all laughing as the show’s emcee. Leading a series of jokes about winners and losers in Silicon Valley, he roasted the crowd with: “There are no losers here. There are only winners and those who fail to win. So if you don’t get an award you are a failure, not a loser. There’s an important distinction there.”

There were indeed many deserving women who failed to win a Crunchie Monday night. In the midst of the evening, I sent out this Tweet offering hope that next year we’d see more female nominees (and winners!):

The Tweet got retweeted and favorited enough times that I want to take a moment to follow up and suggest female nominees for next year. Like all nominees, they’d need to prove themselves in a competitive market of talented people.

Here are the women who make my watch-list for VC of the Year for next year’s Crunchies. I’m writing about what I know — so admittedly this is a Bay Area dominated list. Please include your additional nominations in the comments! Bonus: Female nominees for Founder of the Year.

Female Nominees for VC of the Year

Aileen Lee: Founder of Cowboy Ventures, early investor in One Kings Lane, recently valued just shy of $1B [She’s also a Women 2.0 conference speaker!]

Kirsten Green: Founder of Forerunner Ventures, early investor in many beloved and increasingly ubiquitous brands like Warby Parker, Wanelo, and Dollar Shave Club

Maha Ibrahim: General Partner at Canaan Partners, early investor in Kabam, recently valued at $700M+

Rebecca Lynn: Partner at Morgenthaler, Managing Partner at Canvas Venture Fund, leading health tech investor — will portfolio company Practice Fusion join the billion dollar club in 2014?

Female Nominees for Founder of the Year

Deena Varshavskaya*: Founder and CEO of Wanelo, a company boasting over 10M users a day. Deena won the Best E-Commerce Application category for 2013.

Michelle Zatlyn*: Co-Founder at Cloudflare, the enterprise darling announced a $50M Series B in late 2013 at a $1B valuation, giving the company plenty of room to continue its growth spurt in 2014

Susan Feldman & Alison Pincus: Co-Founders at One Kings Lane, which raised more than $100M at a nearly $1B valuation in January of 2014

Sheila Marcelo: Founder and CEO of Care.com, which went public in January 2014 with a market cap of $554M

* Both Varshavskaya and Zatlyn were previously nominated for a Crunchie.

Congrats to all the recent Crunchies winners – and here’s to more female winners in 2014! #letsmakeithappen

Would would you like to see nominated next year?

Christina_LaMontagne__web_About the guest blogger: Christina LaMontagne (@lamontagne_c) is a Vice President at NerdWallet. She founded and leads the company’s health division, which is dedicated to helping patients and their families make better and more affordable health decisions. Previously, she served as a Principal at Physic Ventures in San Francisco.

Image credit: TechCrunch via Flickr.



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