Since I joined TechStars a few months ago, the question I’ve been asked the most by my colleagues in the venture community is probably “who’s the next Managing Director of TechStars New York?” Despite the fact that we have equally fantastic programs in Seattle, Boulder, Boston, Chicago, San Antonio (Cloud) and also power accelerators for both Microsoft (Windows Azure & Kinect) and Nike, the spotlight always seems to shine the brightest on New York. Having grown up in New York, I get that. It’s the city that never sleeps and if you can make it there, you’ll make it – anywhere.
Yesterday, we were really excited to announce Eugene Chung as the new Managing Director of TechStars New York. I got to spend some time with Eugene during our interview process and was immediately struck by his thoughfulness. We interviewed over 30 candidates for the position, many with more “brand name” than Eugene. However, no one left their mark on me more than Eugene did. Unlike so many folks that function in a “ready, fire, aim” mentality, Eugene never rushed to answer a question and didn’t throw something against the wall if he didn’t have a good answer.
Personally, I was more impressed with Eugene’s work as a filmmaker than his work at NEA. There’s hundreds of super bright young men and women who graduate from top business schools and go work at big venture capital funds, there’s few people like Eugene who hone their artistic sides as well and take a stab at creating a film dedicated to something as personally important to him as Divided Families.
When we look at startups that apply to our programs, we put a heavy emphasis on team. In fact, we like to say that we look for five things in an application:
I joined TechStars because like me, David Cohen believes that more than anything, it’s about the people – and he’s built an organization that is founded upon that deeply held belief. Yesterday, we proved that again. Welcome to TechStars Eugene, you’re a perfect fit.