Welcome to Leaderboard and I’m delighted you stopped by. Curious who am I and why I care so much about this?
I joined the ranks of venture investors in 2008 and by a stroke of pure luck, came to be on six boards, mostly as an observer, within my first year. Learning from the firehose. I now have the privilege of being nearly ten years in and the battle scars to show for it.
There is a Silicon Valley saying that to be a good early-stage investor takes seven years and $30 million lost. The same is true to be a good board director - or perhaps longer.
My ten years is nothing compared to the experienced directors on whom I frequently call. As an ENFJ, I love hearing the insights, amassing the lessons learned, and building life-long relationships. I love doing my best to make each of my boards better, but also to share these insights and lessons learned with others through regular speaking and lively debates at forums ranging from venture capital and private equity conferences to educational and thought-leadership forums at Stanford, Harvard, Cambridge, Imperial, Wharton and others. I learn new and different perspectives every time.
And for those who appreciate a more “traditional” bio (“Enough of the what-motivates-you stuff!”), I hope this helps:
Kelsey Lynn Skinner is an experienced startup board director as a venture capital investor in London and previously in Silicon Valley. Over the past decade, she has been on 12 boards as a director or observer, split evenly between the US and the UK. Kelsey is currently on the boards of Econic Technologies (polymer catalyst), AQDOT Ltd (encapsulation technology), Inflowmatix (water data analytics) and Concirrus (insurance IoT platform) where she led financings for a combined $35m over the past four years. Kelsey is a Partner in the Technology Ventures group at Touchstone Innovations in London, a £600m market cap technology commercialisation and venture capital business. She leads investments across the materials & energy sectors in addition to insurance, HR / Talent and connected products. Before moving to London in 2012, Kelsey was in Silicon Valley for more than a decade, most recently as a Partner at Firelake Capital in Palo Alto, before which she was at Google and on staff at Stanford University’s Engineering and Business Schools. Kelsey graduated in Mechanical Engineering and Thermosciences from Stanford, where she played fullback for the national champion women’s rugby team, and later returned for an MBA at Stanford’s Graduate School of Business. She loves hiking, cycling, games nights, and funny costume parties.