Welcome, E’mani Davis!

Unshackled’s Newest Investment Analyst!

By Maria Salamanca

From our first interaction with E’mani our team was inspired by her deep passion to bridge the gap between what she saw in her community in SF and the rest of the tech world around it. There was a line from our first conversation that stood out from many other candidates and which resembled our team values, she said: “I don’t find a lot of use in being anti-money or anti-power. I am more driven by understanding the problems these two can solve for the communities I care about.” Similar to the rest of our team we saw a drive to make a difference long term by figuring out how this world of tech can propel all communities not just some.

E’mani joined us after she graduated from SF State University with a major in Business and Finance and as a Fellow at Emerson Collective. She had previously spent her summers working in affordable housing projects, San Francisco Police Fiscal Services, and Merrill Lynch. Outside of this, she was an active member of her community as a doula and community organizer for SisterWeb and Wise Health.

Since joining E’mani has seen over 800 deals and worked closely with the rest of the investment team on a few areas she is excited about: mental health, productivity tools, fintech, creative tools, and women’s health. These spaces are hyperfocused on individuals’ well-being and appreciate any products that allow people to unlock their full potential in a healthy and She also has successfully championed her first deal, read more about Hairtelligence here. We are so excited to have her as part of our small but mighty team, we have no doubt she is one to watch!

  • What excites you the most about joining Unshackled? Truthfully, I’m in awe of this team and the talents they all possess. When I think about the kind of professional I want to be and how I visualize a successful career, this team embodies those values. The passion is evident with the Unshackled team and their level of dedication to founders motivates me. There is a team humility and insightfulness that encourages everyone to grow and pursue their interest areas. Regardless of the industry, I’m excited to support Black founders, who are often overlooked in this ecosystem, and partner with other leaders in granting access to capital for founders who look like me. I’m also excited to be a part of BLCK VC who has already garnered a strong community of leaders to support me in my early career.
  • What have you geeked out about recently? As a Type A person who color-codes her to-do lists, I am personally excited about productivity tools and the mental health space. With many things in society that grabs our attention and distracts, I’m eagerly looking for tools that motivates and supports tasks being completed to prevent the cycle of becoming overwhelmed. COVID has emphasized just how much professional and personal development can be overwhelming when you don’t have the proper tools to balance your goals. I’m amazed by tools that encourages individuals to adapt or build habits that will result in their desired goals in becoming a better person. Convince me that you can change my behavior.
  • What skill would you like to learn? I am currently learning French and Python because learning a new language has been intimidating for me. For so long, I’ve allowed myself to believe that I couldn’t learn or understand those mechanics successfully. I think it’s important that I start to unlearn those misconceptions and challenge myself in trying things that are outside my comfort zone. I remember reading “It’s About Damn Time” by Arlan Hamilton and one of the lessons she shared was the importance to fight insecurity with information. This was extremely valuable to me as I began my career in venture because I am going to encounter so many new things and I can’t be overwhelmed by what I don’t know. Adopting the humility to learn is equally as important as having the confidence to lead.
  • What is your life motto? Actions > Words — Who or what you desire to be is irrelevant if you don’t align yourself with the proper actions to become that. Build a habit of endurance and discipline so that your actions reflect the character you desire and adds weight to your words.
  • One of my favorite quotes: “I really don’t think life is about I-could-have-beens. Life is only about the I-tried-to-do. I don’t mind failure but I can’t imagine that I’d forgive myself if I didn’t try.” — Nikki Giovanni
  • How can people get in touch with you? Happy to meet and learn more about you! Feel free to reach out on my LinkedIn, Twitter, and emani@unshackledvc.com 🙂

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