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Meet Venture Connects


OUR TEAM OUR STORY

Our Team

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RJ Pahura

Founder & CEO

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Jessica Powell

Partner & COO

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Dr. Terri Friel

Program & Strategic Director

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Maurice Vincent

President

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Darren Fox

Partner

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Curtis Householder

Venture Director

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Stuart Vanden Heuvel

Associate

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Program Partners

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Manuel Amezcua

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Jason Worth

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Denise Franta

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Brian Langham

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Brad Crawford

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Rajiv Nathan

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Drew Whiting

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Ken McCreadie

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Jordan Gilman

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Jay Joshi

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Kevin M. Roemer

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What We Do


VIEW OUR PROGRAMS
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Our Story

At Venture Connects, we've disrupted an industry by selecting
the best companies and the best investors to create a community.

ENTER YOUR EMAIL AND JOIN THE VENTURE CONNECTS COMMUNITY

Upcoming Events

  • FUND Conference 10/26/2017 8:00:00 AM FUND Conference The Midwest thought leadership conference bridging the gap between early stage investors and growing companies.
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    IronSide
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  • VCAccess - for Entrepreneurs & Investors 11/1/2017 5:30:00 PM VCAccess - for Entrepreneurs & Investors Join us for a casual gathering for the startup community - both entrepreneurs and investors. No selling or pitching please - just good old fashioned networking with good people and great Food & Bev specials to choose from!
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    IronSide
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  • December 2017 Pitch Event 12/6/2017 9:30:00 AM December 2017 Pitch Event The Venture Connects team would like to invite accredited investors to attend our private investor meeting, VCVetted®, on Wednesday, December 6th from 9:30am to 12:30pm at Polsinelli Law Firm.
    venue
    IronSide
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Testimonials

The VCVetted program is very well organized and provides a single point of access to a variety of prospective investors. The VC team understands many of the hurdles facing young businesses and among other things, has found a way to improve the capital raising process for entrepreneurs. It was a great experience from the beginning and I expect it to be a perpetual relationship moving forward. Peter Hepner CEO, Purchasing Platform (Acquired)
The VC Vetted program is a unique gem that could only be found in an amazing city like Chicago. There are many organizations out there that promise to connect entrepreneurs with investors but are questionable in their ability to deliver. Not to mention that those organizations are always offering outrageously priced packages to entrepreneurs who are desperately trying to maximize their capital. Venture Connects stands out amongst the crowd in its ability to offer affordable options for startups to grow. VisuHire chose Venture Connects partly because they proved they could deliver big time for VisuHire. I don't think you could possibly find another organization in the world, let alone Chicago, that can get a startup in front of so much capital so quickly. VCVetted is better than any other startup organization I've worked with. Lane Campbell – CEO, VisuHire
Ventures Connects has been an intricate part of our success to date. All the resources that they extended to us from Pitch Coaching to initial introductions have given us new life! Our investor interest has tripled since the inception of our partnership. Their team is very hands on, responsive and good to have in your corner. I am very pleased with our relationship and I look forward to the future of Team Interval with Venture Connects. Tyrre Burks – CEO, Team Interval
I really appreciate the VCVetted process. I'm a big fan of the notion "iron sharpens iron". I found the interaction with other entrepreneurs who were is a similar position in terms of seeking capital, preparing to pitch, etc. to be very valuable. Don Blust CEO, LifeStyleLock
VC Vetted was a great experience. It is the only program that truly offers the ability to present and focus on networking with the right people. Well done. Eric Rice - CEO, TrepScore
VCVetted gave us a great opportunity to focus our fundraising efforts so we could put our energy into value add activities like understating our story and how to tell it, as opposed to the logistics of managing dozens of meetings. Even better: their guidance and feedback was invaluable in helping us shape how we present our business to the investment community. Jason Seiden – CEO, BrandAmper (Acquired)
There is certainly no other program or session like VCVetted in Chicago. They by far have the most accredited investors. Rho Kook Song, CEO, Freenters
For a company based outside of the Midwest, the VCVetted program was an excellent opportunity for exposure and connection with the Chicago investment community. Mike Batista – CEO, Quantified Care
When I came to Venture Connects, I was an engineer with a web app but no idea how startup funding worked, no company, no business plan, no pitch deck, no brand, and no connections to investors in the ecosystem. Now, I have a company, a brand, a cofounder, and $520k in venture funding. Venture Connects obviously didn't do all of that work, but did build the first versions of much of these deliverables, and connected me to the right people to help make it happen. Sam Harris, Chairman, Tribe.do
Venture Connects provided great forums for Youtopia both in terms of being able to confidently pitch in front of prospective investors (and packed the house) and several more intimate networking events where we met individual angels as well as those representing institutions. Simeon Schnapper – CEO, YouTopia

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