#DRF4Life: Congrats to the Graduating Dorm Room Fund Partners!

The Dorm Room Fund community at All DRF 2017

During our annual summit a few years ago, a Dorm Room Fund alum coined the hashtag #DRF4Life to demonstrate the impact Dorm Room Fund’s had on his life and his dedication to be part of Dorm Room Fund community for life.

As we’re sending off our graduating partners, It’s cliche to say this isn’t goodbye, but at Dorm Room Fund it’s actually true. Our alumni are an integral part of our community. They’re continuously supporting Dorm Room Fund founders, sharing knowledge with new partners, mentoring and guiding each other, and really living the value of #DRF4Life.

In a recent survey, a graduating partner wrote, “Dorm Room Fund is genuinely the best community I’ve ever been a part of.”

That feedback is a testament to the time and effort this year’s Dorm Room Fund partners have poured in to making Dorm Room Fund a truly world-class community. We’re incredibly grateful for your contributions.

As you go on to start your crazy impressive careers, we thank you for all you’ve given to Dorm Room Fund and hope the community can give back to you for the entirety of your #DRF4Life.

🙏🏽🙏🏽🙏🏽

Phin, Rei, and the Dorm Room Fund team


Bay Area

Liu Jiang
Post-graduation, Liu will be continuing the DRF spirit by working at Sequoia Capital as an investor on the venture team. She is the true embodiment of #DRF4Life, from her dedication to portfolio support during her time as a DRF partner to her ongoing commitment to the Stanford startup environment. She is excited to live in SF and to meet awesome founders as a full-time job.

Ryan Chapman
Ryan is an incredibly caring and dedicated leader who really guided the Bay Area team during his time. He is excited about novel applications of AI and will be pursuing this passion post-graduation by working as a Machine Learning Engineer at Apple on Siri’s Proactive Intelligence Team. He is looking forward to putting down some roots in the SF area and keeping his eyes on the startup and venture capital ecosystem.

Breton Birkhofer
As a partner on the Bay Area team, Breton’s clear and insightful investment theses combined his years of startup experience with his strong finance background. Breton will continue to blend these two interests as an investor at PLD Ventures, the venture arm of Prologis. He is excited to live in the SF area and focus on real estate technology.

New York City

Zak Kukoff
Zak is graduating from NYU Gallatin after over two years on the DRF NYC team, serving this past year as Managing Partner. We’ll miss his thoughtful meeting contributions and incredible investment in the community of DRF founders, his event-planning ability, and most importantly his Cool Dad™ style. Watch out for him leading angel rounds in athleisure companies everywhere soon. While his doctor may have some choice words for him, we know that wherever he ends up next, the juice section at Whole Foods won’t be safe.

Avi Das
Avi will be graduating with his MBA from NYU Stern. Over the past two years, Avi has brought his years of investing, banking, and finance knowledge to the table, and increased the depth of discussion in our meetings. Avi’s a known devil’s advocate on the NYC team, and has challenged every partner’s opinions and beliefs about companies (and life). We’ll miss his words of wisdom and impeccable fashion, and we’re excited to see what Avi will go on to do next!

Ben Paster
Ben has the distinction of being one of our longest serving Dorm Room Fund partners — it’s hard to imagine DRF without him. His extraordinary insight and thoughtful introspection helped set the tone of DRF NYC. Working with Ben the past few years has been an amazing experience and I can’t wait to see what he does next.

George Liu
After graduation from Columbia University, George will be working on his own startup (check them out @ usepalette.com). During his time in school, George founded and ran Almaworks, Columbia’s student-run startup accelerator, which has been pivotal in helping the team source companies out of NYC. We’ll miss George’s never-ending enthusiasm, whether that be in the FRC office or over email. George, best of luck on your startup and cheers to being #funemployed (and #drf4life!).

Matt Piccolella
Matt is graduating from Columbia University and will be joining Lyft as a Product Manager. We’ll miss his focusing presence in investment meetings and his consistent good nature and will never quite understand how he has a concert to go to after literally every investment meeting, but wish we could be as cool. In addition to being an invaluable member of the NYC team, Matt’s been integral in building up entrepreneurship at Columbia. We hope he never stops working on side projects and that at some point soon, we’ll be able to fund one of them. Thanks for the laughs, Matt!

Sam Ku
Sam will be graduating NYU with her JD/MBA and will be joining Cooley to practice startup law. We’ll miss her incredible ability to both source investments and support portfolio companies, and we hope that these skills are useful in the world of law. Continue to enjoy living the SWUG-life before you have to go heads-down and study for the Bar this summer. Here’s to us all being able to hire you to rep our startups in the near future #drf4life

Boston

Riley Soward
We are amazed by Riley “Mohawk” Soward’s ability to dedicate so much time and effort into Dorm Room Fund while also doing awesome things with his startup, Campus Insights. Riley kept the team focused during meetings while also consistently catching up with us outside of meetings, showing how much he cares about each of us. He’s going to continue focusing on Campus Insights while working part-time for a startup called Lookback and finishing up school at Boston College.

Yasyf Mohamedali
Yasyf has put his computer science knowledge to the best possible use by building out all of DRF’s software infrastructure. Whether it was mixing up AM and PM on his alarm clocks, missing every bus DRF has ever bought a ticket for, or being on his 6th consecutive “hell week,” Yasyf always had the best attitude and gave the team a reason to laugh and enjoy the moment. We’re lucky that he’ll be staying involved in DRF as our Head of Engineering as he pursues his master’s at MIT.

Henry Tsai
No matter the situation, we could always count on Henry to have a valuable LinkedIn connection. He cares deeply about the people around him, so it’s no surprise that he used his talent for bringing people together to help others by creating Hi From The Other Side. And just when we thought he couldn’t get any cooler, he told us that after graduation he’ll be serving as an Advisor on technology to the Mayor of San Jose.

Jason Krone
Jason is someone we could go to at any time with questions about DRF, tech, or life, and he consistently gave an awesome, thoughtful response. He always spiced up meetings with his awesome graphic tees and his committed love for Chipotle. We’re still trying to convince him to stay on board and join the DRF NYC team, as he’ll be pursuing his Master of Science in Machine Learning at Columbia in the fall.

Lucas Rocha
Lucas’s dedication to DRF was evidenced not only by the incredible work he did for All DRF but also by the enthusiasm he brought to the team every week. He was always the first to volunteer when a new opportunity came up, and his commitment to DRF made us all appreciate being part of the team even more. We’re looking forward to hearing stories from his next adventure at JetBlue Technology Ventures.

Sophia Popova
Sophia was always the much-needed contrarian voice in the room. She is extremely thoughtful and brought great perspective to our discussions, and looking back, she was almost certainly right about everything. We’re hoping that she will come surprise us at our meetings next semester, as she’ll be sticking around Boston as VP of Technology Growth Equity at Summit Partners.

Will Green
Community is clearly important to Will, and he always reminded the team of the value of developing meaningful relationships with each other and learning from each other (if you get the chance, ask him about his toilet seat DRF revelation). In any conversation you have with him, you’re guaranteed to learn something new. We are very excited for Will, as he will be enjoying the startup life at Zinc after graduation.

Philadelphia

Nigel Coelho
As our sole Drexel partner, Nigel formed strong relationships with the entrepreneurship community there and helped lead the effort to form a relationship with CMU and Georgia Tech. Nigel brought more energy than anyone to our Monday meetings and his signature fist bump has become iconic amongst all the DRF teams. We’re excited to see the awesome work he’ll do as a Technology Consultant at Deloitte.

Jeff Ellington
Jeff wore every type of hat needed on the team and held the team together. As the sole MBA on the team for his last semester he provided guidance to and support to every partner. Jeff pioneered the Dorm Room Fund Frontier program expanding our presence to schools across the country attending pitch competitions and conferences. Jeff joined Fuel Capital during the second half of the year and we can’t wait to see all he does there.

Molly Wang
Molly was a fundamental member of the DRF team immediately after she joined. Whether it was enhancing our internal discussions or constantly meeting with founders she really enhanced our team. She helped expand the All DRF conference this past year to include founders and speakers and will be greatly missed by the entire team.

Pranav Ramabhadran
Pranav was the team’s go-to partner whenever we had any technical question. Not only is there no topic that he isn’t familiar with but he also is able to explain it in a way that everyone can understand. Pranav also worked to expand DRF’s partnerships with hack-a-thons around the country. While we’ll certainly be lost without his knowledge on the team we know he will do great things as a Product Manager at Dropbox next year.

David Greenstein
David was the Philly teams longest serving DRF member. Whether it was his knowledge of the music industry or his passion for learning about new companies David was always an integral member in meetings. David began his desire of helping companies grow on campus through his company LaunchQuad which allowed people to learn about what startups were being founded on your campus and leveraged this passion to help DRF companies throughout the portfolio succeed.

Alon Bonder
Alon has been an amazing resource for DRF during his time on the team — from establishing relationships with external VCs to introducing our portfolio and all the way to the invaluable partner talks that enlightened the rest of the DRF team. All of us at DRF will sorely miss the humor you added to the meetings and the thoughtful perspectives on several industries that you bring to the table. Without a doubt, we know you’ll do amazing things in your new role at Venrock. We’re really proud of what you’ve already accomplished. Every time we see an autonomous car on the road, we’ll be thinking of you Alon…

Josh Lee
Over the last few years, Josh has been an integral part of the Dorm Room Fund team — first as Partner, and then as Managing Partner. We’re not sure how many times he’ll drop out of Penn, but I think we’ve lost count :) The design guru has had his hand at projects at the White House & Facebook, and he’s currently working full-time as a freelance designer in NYC while pursuing his passion in film. Whenever we need to make an important decision in life, we’ll always remember Josh’s reassurance that “no one really knows what they’re doing, we’re all guessing here”. Thanks for all of your wisdom and best of luck with your digital nomad life! P.S. Make sure to invite us all to your Airbnb of the week.