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Joanna Rees is a Managing Partner at West, a venture studio that specializes in the end-to-end process of designing, building, and launching purpose-driven brands. West invests in bold ideas and transforms visionary companies into category leaders.
Joanna currently serves on the corporate board of FICO (NYSE: FICO), Care.com (NYSE: CRCM), Tentrr, Prelude Fertility, Mursion and Hickies. Joanna is also a Senior Advisor of the B Team (www.bteam.org). Previously, Joanna led the formation and capital raise for Endeavor Catalyst, an impact investment fund supporting high-impact entrepreneurs in emerging markets. Joanna was a candidate for Mayor of San Francisco in November 2011.
Joanna was the founder of VSP Capital, a San Francisco-based venture capital firm focused on early-stage companies combining technical innovation with market development. Joanna has served on the board of more than 25 venture-backed companies across a broad range of industries She also served on the Board of the National Venture Capital Association (“NVCA), the Coppola Companies (Francis Ford Coppola), and as Chairman of the USA for Madrid-based FON. Joanna was the co-creator of the Build Brand Value CEO forum which she ran from 1997 to 2003 as part of VSP Capital. Joanna has significant experience in finance and investment banking including positions at BA Securities and a boutique merchant bank, Vrolyk & Co. Joanna held several senior marketing management positions with Groupe Danone, a $20+ billion global consumer products firm, and began her career at the advertising agency DMB&B.
The World Economic Forum selected Joanna as a Global Leader for Tomorrow (GLT). The Aspen Institute selected Joanna for its Henry Crown Fellows. Joanna serves on the non-profit board of Endeavor Global and The Representation Project. Joanna is a seminar moderator for the Aspen Institute. She is also a Senior Mentor for the Henry Crown Fellowship. She earned her MBA from Columbia University (beta gamma sigma) and a BS from Duke University where she was a member of the gymnastics team.
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