Natalia Oberti Noguera means business. When the self-identifited feminist with a capital 'f' discovered that only 12% of U.S. angel investors were women (further, only 4% were minorities)*, she took matters into her own hands, setting out to change those numbers.
Ms. Oberti Noguera created the Pipeline Fellowship, an angel investing bootcamp for female philanthropists. This program aims to increase diversity in the American angel investing community and creates capital for women social entrepreneurs. Through an overlapping three-pronged approach—education, mentoring, practice—Fellows learn about angel investing, receive continual guidance from experienced field professionals, and put their money where their mouths are via investment in a female-led for-profit social enterprise.
I was fortunate enough to meet with Ms. Oberti Noguera and get connected with one of the recent Fellows, Anna Wilson. In turn, Wilson, the Senior Manager of Mobile Monetization at Pandora, shared with me how the program works, what the experience gave her, and places wherein she draws inspiration.
Why she joined the Fellowship:** I joined the Pipeline Fellowship to participate in a forum where I could learn the ins & outs of angel investing from a variety of perspectives and actually put these learnings to the test by making a real investment in an early stage company.
Benefits from the experience: The women in my cohort represent an incredibly diverse set of personal and career experiences, each bringing with them a unique perspective on what social enterprise means, what their individual investment strategy should look like, and what character traits are attractive to them in a founder. In addition, we bring different areas of domain expertise and negotiation styles to the table so it has been fascinating to learn what makes everyone tick and how to most effectively reach a consensus on a topic so personal as angel investing.
How her work at Pandora bolsters her interests in philanthropy and product development: [As] I just joined Pandora three months ago…[I] haven't yet had a chance to engage in the myriad philanthropic activities available through the company and employee groups. [However, m]y work at Pandora does support my interest in building products that delight their users, especially with regards to utilizing technology to improve people's ability to discover new music.
What’s her inspiration? I typically turn to the outdoors, music, and cooking, where I can unplug, relax, and create. On a more professional level, I look to values-driven, independent companies I admire, such as Patagonia & Dogfish Head Brewing, for inspiration from their founders.
Are you interested in learning about angel investing and based in Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, Miami, New York City, San Francisco, or Washington, DC? Apply to become a Pipeline Fellow!
*Statistics found in 2011 by the Center for Venture Research at the University of New Hampshire.
**Bolded text is author’s own, italicized is Anna Wilson’s.