We can think of nothing more essential than helping underserved individuals create opportunities for themselves
Chris co-founded Elevar in 2008 with the view that “Entrepreneurs are now building businesses based on the economics of inclusion. This fosters individual access to opportunity and will bring prosperity to low income communities. We believe in fundamental investing and can think of nothing more essential than helping underserved individuals create opportunities for themselves and their communities. Outstanding economic and social returns will naturally follow.”
Chris is the founder of Salish|Growth, an investment management company focused on creating new businesses that enhance community resilience focused on the Pacific Northwest. He has 20 years of experience across venture capital, emerging markets investing and entrepreneurship in the telecom sector. Chris has served as a Director or observer on the boards of several companies, including SKS Microfinance (one of the most successful microfinance institutions in India), Ujjivan Financial Services (the most respected urban microfinance institution in India), AdRelevance, NetMotion Wireless and SinglePoint. He teaches innovation at the Idea Institute at Western Washington University.
Chris has a degree in Geology from Williams College in Massachusetts, USA. He began his career in 1993 by founding a clean-tech company that created natural solutions to heavy metal contamination. A few years later, he co-founded a wireless development company that was backed by Craig McCaw, George Soros and Charles Schwab. He then became a partner at one of the most active venture capital firms in the Seattle area where he focused on early stage investments in communications, web based marketing and software for mobile devices. Chris left mainstream venture capital in 2004 to focus on investments with broader and more beneficial human impact. Along the way, he co-founded Cap & Gown, a youth mentoring program, and served on the Advisory Board of American Rivers, a conservation group.