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Our People

The folks who make it all happen.

Leadership Team

Melissa Bradley
Melissa L. Bradley is a tri-sector leader and Managing Partner at 1863 Ventures with more than 20 years of entrepreneurship, investment and leadership experience. She is an Adjunct Professor at the McDonough School of Business at Georgetown University where she teaches impact investing, social entrepreneurship, P2P economies and innovation. Melissa has served as a Presidential Appointee under Presidents Clinton and Obama. Under Clinton, Melissa served as Financial Regulatory Affairs Fellow at the Department of Treasury, Office of Thrift Supervision, where she researched the impact of welfare reform and micro-enterprise lending on the financial industry and authored “IDA Strategy for Asset Accumulation”
Art Stevens
Senior Partner
Art Stevens is a Senior Partner at 1863, focusing on mentoring and accelerating New Majority entrepreneurs. He has been an Innovator in Residence at American University, and previously worked with PayPal as the Director for Social Innovation Projects, focusing on efforts to create economic opportunity for underserved populations. Prior to this Art was responsible for MicroPlace, an online marketplace for investments in Microfinance. His career has included significant work with the Calvert Foundation, where he led the “Gateway to Impact” research project partnered with Rockefeller Foundation, DeutschBank, and Envestnet. His traditional investment experience includes over a decade of work for larger firms Morgan Stanley, Franklin Templeton, and TCW Investment Management. He began specializing in the non-profit community in 2002, helping to launch a social enterprise in the elder care sector and working with a social enterprise focused on health care in southern India
Phillip Reeves
Philip is a Partner at 1863 Ventures where he co-leads an industry agnostic program who's mission is scaling businesses through operational improvements, sustainable sales processes, human capital best practices and financial management. Philip’s background includes serving as the Manager of Small Business Technology and Innovation for the Government of the District of Columbia and working in corporate and business development for a small government contractor. Philip began his career in private equity at Lehman Brothers. Philip is a former Curator of the World Economic Forum Global Shapers DC Hub. He is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Morehouse College.
Adeleke Omitowoju
Adeleke Omitowoju is Venture Partner at 1863 Ventures. In his role, he manages the portfolio of companies where the firm has made investments across several sectors. He brings a decade of experience across enterprise sales, private equity and startup advisory. Adeleke started his career at Avenue Capital Group as as an analyst in New Delhi India. He then joined IBM as a Client Executive where he led complex deals in healthcare and energy and utilities. He attended Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University (FAMU) where he earned his undergraduate degree and MBA with a concentration in finance. He currently lives in Washington DC with his wife and two boys.
Emmanuel Kaska
Emmanuel is a partner at 1863 Ventures and manages the team’s marketing & design operations. Prior to 1863, Emmanuel built and sold several products, later acquired by large enterprise firms such as Northrup Grumman, Lockheed Martin & Capital One. He takes the lessons learned running his startups to advise fortune 500 companies, like Google, on how they can build inclusive ecosystems and better direct resources for New Majority founders. He serves as a mentor for the Univ of Maryland accelerator Startup Shell & The World Bank where he supports founders (both foreign & domestic) on developing effective processes & systems across design, product and marketing.
Steven Rodriguez
Community Director
Steven is Director of Community Engagement for 1863 Ventures, a business development program, and community strategist for the Global Entrepreneurship Network and NextGen Venture Partners. He is currently a community strategist leading various world renowned entrepreneurship programs and initiatives in the Greater Washington, D.C. Region like the Global Entrepreneurship Week celebration and the Techstars Startup Programs through Startup Week, Startup Weekend and Startup Digest. Rodriguez has a BA from CUNY The City College of New York and is currently pursuing an EMBA.

Board of Directors

Melissa Bradley
1863 Ventures
Jenn Flynn
Head of Small Business Bank
Capital One
Graham McLaughlin
Managing Director, Social Impact
Optum (a division of UnitedHealth Group)
Aerica Shimizu Banks
Angel Investor
Marissa Mahoney
Economic Club, Manager, Education Initiatives
The Economic Club of Washington, D.C.
Rustin Brown
Kirkland & Ellis LLP
Vonetta Young
Angel Investor & Advisor