Barry Schuler is Managing Director of DFJ Growth and the former Chairman/CEO of America Online Inc. He is credited with being one of the pioneers of the modern Internet. As an entrepreneur for more than 30 years, Barry propelled innovations in digital media, e-commerce, design, and video games. He was a member of the senior management team that scaled AOL from $1B to $200B in market cap during 20 consecutive quarters of growth. Barry co-founded the DFJ Growth Fund in 2006 and is actively involved with its investments which include Twitter, Tumblr, SolarCity, SpaceX and Tesla Motor Company. He serves on the board of directors for Good Technology, Raydiance Inc., Synthetic Genomics, and SCIenergy. Barry graduated with a BA from Rutgers University and is a member of its Hall of Distinguished Alumni.
Barry is committed to education reform and is chairman of New Tech Network, the nation’s most replicated classroom transformation model, and a Director at Knowledgeworks Foundation. He co-founded Blue Oak School, Napa Valley’s only K-8 independent progressive school.
Matthew Q. Maher is a Director in the Financial and New Business Division of Mitsui & Co. (U.S.A.) and has been an active participant in the energy efficiency investment space since 2009.
At Mitsui, Matt is focused on principal investments and business development in the energy efficiency, robotics and healthcare sectors. In 2010, he helped lead Mitsui’s joint venture investment into Transcend Equity, which helped to spur Transcend’s growth and eventual merger with SCIenergy.
Prior to joining Mitsui USA in 2008, Matt was a Vice President at Trenwith Securities, a boutique investment bank, where he lead various domestic and cross-border mergers and acquisitions, including transactions for General Electric, Eastman Kodak, and Hewlett Packard. Matt also served as a Captain in the United States Army, where his last position was as Operations Officer of the 39th Finance Battalion located in Hanau, Germany.
Matt is a graduate of Bucknell University, where he received a Degree in Business Finance and was a ROTC scholarship recipient.
Sam Fort is a Principal at DFJ Growth and focuses on growth-stage investments in categories including enterprise cloud, big data, mobile, and disruptive enabling technologies. Sam is actively involved with DFJ Growth’s investments in SimpliVity, Formlabs, DataStax, Ping Identity, Yammer (acquired by MSFT), Tumblr (acquired by YHOO), Box, SCIenergy, and previously, SolarCity (NASDAQ: SCTY).
Prior to joining DFJ, Sam worked with TPG Capital in San Francisco where he focused on identifying and investing in late-stage technology and telecommunications businesses. Previously, Sam worked with Morgan Stanley’s investment banking team in New York City where he focused on mergers, acquisitions, and initial public offerings for companies in the technology, media, and telecommunications industries. He has also worked with Nth Power, a leading venture capital firm focused on energy investments, and served in business development roles for three startups in the energy technology category.
Sam holds a B.S.E. in Computer & Telecommunications Engineering and B.A. in Economics from the University of Pennsylvania, where he graduated Magna Cum Laude, and an MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business. He also serves on the Board of Directors of America SCORES Bay Area, a 501c3 organization providing after-school literacy classes and team sports for Bay Area elementary and middle schools.
William D. Lese has more than 27 years of research, operating and venture capital experience in the energy and environmental businesses. Prior to co-founding Braemar, Bill was a partner with Mantis Holdings, Inc., a venture capital firm focused on investing in environmental and energy-efficiency companies, where he concentrated on emerging technologies for converting industrial waste streams into value-added products. Prior to Mantis Holdings, he was the director of business development for NPS Industries, Inc., an international manufacturer of engineered equipment for the power industry. Bill’s business development activities included managing a joint venture with Consolidated Edison Co., and managing other key customer relationships. Prior to joining NPS Industries, he was one of the original employees of Sithe Energies, Inc. (an affiliate of Vivendi, SA), which became one of the world’s largest independent power producers. At Sithe Energies, Mr. Lese had project and technical oversight responsibilities, including managing several power projects.
Bill serves on the Advisory Committee of the New York City Accelerator for a Clean and renewable Economy (NYC ACRE). He currently serves on the board of directors of Coaltek, Utility Associates, CIRIS Energy, OPX Biotechnologies, Solazyme, Stion, Ioxus, CRB, General Fusion, Proterro, Bioformix, EcoMotors International, SCIenergy, and is chairman of the board of Solicore. He serves as a board observer for Enerkem. Bill has both a B.A. in physics and an M.S. in energy science from New York University.
Prior to founding The Westly Group, Steve Westly served as the Controller and Chief Fiscal Officer of the state of California – the world’s eighth largest economy. As Controller, he chaired the State Lands Commission and served on 63 other boards and commissions, including CalPERS and CalSTRS, the nation’s two largest public pension funds, which together invest more than $350 billion. During his four-year term, Steve spearheaded innovative tax programs that helped close the State’s budget deficit and also led an effort to commit more than $1 billion to clean technology investments.
In the 2008 election cycle Steve served as a California co-chair and a National Finance Committee member of the Obama for America campaign. He currently serves on the Secretary of Energy’s Advisory Board as a representative for the venture capital industry.
Before running for office, Steve helped guide the online auction company eBay through its period of most rapid growth, serving as the Senior Vice President of Marketing, Business Development, M&A and International. Steve helped bring eBay to Europe and Asia and developed the marketing and acquisition strategies that paved the path for the firm’s exponential growth.
Steve began his career in Washington, D.C., where he worked first on Capitol Hill and later in the Office of Conservation and Solar at the U.S. Department of Energy. Steve returned to California to become special assistant to the President of the California Public Utilities Commission. While there, he published two books on alternative energy and the utilities.
Steve holds a bachelor’s degree from Stanford University and an MBA from Stanford’s Graduate School of Business, where he served on the faculty for five years. Steve and his wife, Anita, run the Westly Foundation, which provides education and health care services for children and underserved communities throughout California.
As CEO, Steve Gossett, Jr is responsible for the strategic direction of SCIenergy. Steve joined SCIenergy in 2012 and has over 20 years of successful experience in developing and deploying intelligent building technologies. Steve also has an extensive background in engineering, development, and funding of comprehensive energy efficiency retrofit projects in existing buildings. Prior to SCIenergy, Steve was Chief Operating Officer for Transcend Equity for 10 years, where he spearheaded the creation of Transcend’s Energy Efficiency-as-a-Service offerings, ultimately creating a joint venture fund with Japanese trading conglomerate Mitsui to develop and own energy efficiency projects in commercial real estate, private universities, private healthcare, and industrial facilities. In 1997, Steve pioneered the Managed Energy Services Agreement (MESA™), a unique transaction structure that provides private sector clients access to deep retrofit work through an Energy Efficiency-as-a-Service (EEaaS) model. Steve holds a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from Texas A&M University, and multiple professional designations from the Association of Energy Engineers.