This Former Hillary Staffer Is Building Aloe, A Self-Care App. Meet Amber Discko.

I know Amber via her kind and helpful Twitter presence (I *think* @Iano introduced us). So when she launched a recent Kickstarter for Aloe, a self-care app, it felt right to jump in and support her. As the project gained momentum I was surprised by two types of reactions: first, the large number of teens who really were into the idea, and second, the harassers who belittled the concept. As a friend, and now Aloe backer, I wanted to learn a bit more about Amber and Aloe, so Five Questions.

AmberDiscko

Hunter Walk: Besides the holder of an awesome name, who is Amber Discko?

Amber Discko: Professionally I’m a freelance digital strategist who most recently worked on the Hillary for America campaign, a creative strategist at Tumblr, and fun fact I was the community manager for Denny’s Diner back when it was innovative for a brand to be good on

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Launched: Wim Yogurt

Quick crosspost from the Homebrew blogWim Yogurt launched, a startup out of NYC which has developed a kitchen appliance to make single-serve frozen yogurt in the comfort of your home. It’s good….. they’re selling (and shipping) now!

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Founders Should Set Aside More Equity for Their Team & “Split the Pain” With Investors

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As you can see, Weekend VC Twitter gets pretty wild and crazy!!!! But employee option pool is important enough that I wanted to briefly expand upon my comment above.

Employee options pools, typically created at the point of financings, shouldn’t be treated as haggling over dilution, but rather a strategic resource that will help founders build the best team and, by extension, a more valuable company. Satya and I rarely see less than a 10% pool created at seed and Series A, but are increasingly engaging with founders about 12-15% pools, especially if you’re going to be hiring in-demand engineers (computer vision, AI) and/or (more typically post Series A), building out a senior executive team. While you should expect these sorts of hires to take below market cash comp versus what Google is paying them, this tradeoff needs to be replaced with equity upside.

Since Homebrew typically leads/co-leads seed rounds, we

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“We are one of just 13 industrialized countries with a rising maternal mortality rate” – Christy Turlington Burns on Fighting for Healthy Mothers

I’d open this post by saying “Christy Turlington Burns works tirelessly to improve maternal health” except Christy doesn’t seem to tire. Attribute this energy to her yoga and running dedication, or maybe the very personal experiences in Christy’s own pregnancy which caused her to start Every Mother Counts, but either way her internal combustion engine breaks the rules of physics. And it grabs everyone she meets, including me when I first learned about EMC and have been an enthusiastic supporter since, helping them connect with theSkimm and other startups which can spread their message. So it thrills me to share a bit more about Christy, EMC and being a public personality here in Five Questions.
Citizens of Humanity 2013

Christy doing work in Haiti

Hunter Walk: Every Mother Counts is a nonprofit focused on supporting maternal health. It’s difficult to imagine that mission would be controversial but we seem to be in
The future of Georgia's Obstetric workforce
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“the iPhone created a sea-change for women—as consumers but also as entrepreneurs” says BBG Ventures’ Susan Lyne

Susan Lyne founded BBG Ventures in 2014, just a year after we started Homebrew. New fund managers are generally a pretty collaborative group and we got to know the BBGV team, sharing dealflow and asking each other “is this normal?” when facing a weird one-off situation.  While her venture fund might be new, Susan’s resume is deeper and more impressive than most seasoned GPs, spanning executive tenures at iconic companies such as Disney, CEO of Martha Stewart Living and a number of public company Directorships. I learn from her every time we chat, and I’m excited to bring some of that to you via Five Questions. FullSizeRender (3) Hunter Walk: After a successful career on the operating side, what prompted starting BBG Ventures in 2014? What was the original relationship between BBGV and AOL/TW? Susan Lyne: I was at Gilt from 2008-2013 when NYC saw its first big wave of female
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“Everything is a marketing campaign now, even policy ideas” – Renee DiResta Connecting Politics, Anti-Vaxxers & Social Media

Badass. Renee DiResta is badass. Not self-proclaimed badass. But like seriously badass. Click on that bio link in the previous line. Look for yourself. Then read the below. Seriously badass. Enjoy Five Questions with Renee.  ReneeDiResta Hunter Walk: You went from Wall St Trader to VC at OATV to operating side now at Haven, a logistics startup. Is there a consistent attribute underlying those different roles, or do they reflect changing perspectives on what interested you? Renee DiResta: Some of it is changing perspectives, but the common thread is marketplaces. I started at Jane Street as a clerk, writing code to automate myself out of the boring parts of my job (basically, writing scrapers because there were no APIs). When I freed up time, I asked the partners if I could start attending the trading classes even though I hadn’t been hired into that role, and that’s how
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“We have a common philosophy that it all starts with people” – Heather Hartnett on Human Ventures, NYC’s Startup Studio

When I was about 7 years old, my parents told me that if I had been female, my name would have been Heather. So when Joe Marchese introduced me to Heather Hartnett for more information about the NYC startup studio they were cofounding, I was predisposed to feel a kinship. Heather isn’t just building Human Ventures to be valuable, she’s building it to be meaningful and enduring. I can see this in the people they bring onboard and the founders they work with. I’m lucky enough to be a small personal investor in HV and the Five Questions below will give you a sense of why I’m excited.  Heather Disrupt 2017 2 Hunter Walk: Give readers a brief overview of Human Ventures and how you got involved. Heather Hartnett: Human Ventures is what is now called a startup studio—a hybrid of early-stage VC fund and company builder. We’re based in the heart of
Heather Cheddar tv
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