Finding the Funding: A Conversation about Women Founders

May 11, 2022 @ 12-1pm ET

Recent headlines are painting a rather grim picture. Bloomberg reported in January 2022 that female founders secured only 2% of the record $330 billion of venture capital investment in 2021, their smallest share since 2016.

Join Girls in Tech DC for a discussion with innovative and impactful female founders, operators, and investors to unpack the current landscape of starting new ventures.  What are the obstacles and opportunities? What really needs to happen to move the needle for meaningful investment in women-led businesses?


Jennifer Krusius


Jennifer joined ABS Capital in 2021 as a venture partner. Prior to joining ABS, Jennifer worked as a venture partner at Columbia Capital and served as a General Manager at Uber. Earlier, Jennifer led investments at IFC Asset Management Company. She began her career in media and telecom investment banking at Credit Suisse Group in New York. Jennifer’s areas of expertise include tech, internet infrastructure, smart cities, autonomous vehicles, and financial institutions.
Jennifer works in ABS’s Washington, DC office. A Pittsburgher at heart, Jennifer now lives in Washington with her husband and two children.

Stephanie Marshall

She learned to see revenue opportunities in the emerging internet world when she had the fortune of working for former FCC chairman Tom Wheeler and then she launched product management for startup payment processing network gateway Merchant Link, acquired by Paymentech and later JP Morgan Chase. When Verizon Wireless hired her to find ways to monetize mobile content and data, Stephanie was excited to help build an entirely new industry of mobile advertising for carriers. She later led new market development for Verizon, launching products and establishing a new culture to support the pace and culture of innovation.
As Chief Commercial Officer for Wireless Registry (acquired by PWC in 2021), Stephanie led go-to-market, closed deals and helped raise capital, winning awards from CTIA Startup Lab. For the past six years, she has focused on innovation strategy consulting with her firm M3 Advisors, driving product and marketing strategy and execution for disruptive products and services.
As of January 2022, Stephanie joined Ford Motor Company as Head of Services Marketing Strategy, where she will be leading marketing strategy and the full-stack team execution across product sales and marketing as they develop new consumer focused services. And she’s an active angel investor and co-founder of Citrine Angels, the DC area’s first angel group of women investing in women. She also served on the MMA Board and the IAB Mobile Board, and taught entrepreneurship for the FedTech Defense Innovation Accelerator Program.

Ryan Shadrick

Ryan Shadrick is the founder and CEO of Boardwalk Collective, an advisory and investment firm. She graduated with honors from Princeton University and Harvard Law School.
 She is the Chairperson of Territory Foods, a healthy meal delivery food tech company.  And, she serves on the Board of Directors of public company Acon S2—a sustainability-focused special purpose acquisition company.  Ryan founded Feeding Change at the Milken Institute—a global effort to catalyze a healthier food system focusing on the finance community. And, she serves on the advisory boards of numerous companies, including Benson Hill, Brightseed, Upside Foods, Apeel Sciences, Voyage Foods, and Perfect Day, as well as several nonprofit organization advisory boards, including Feeding America, Food for Climate League, ReFed, and Yellow—the new foundation founded by Pharrell Williams.  
Throughout a career that has spanned law, civil rights, public policy, marketing, philanthropy, and finance, Ryan has maintained a devotion to creating a healthier, happier, and more equitable future by previously serving as Chief Strategy Officer and General Counsel of Partnership for a Healthier America, Michelle Obama’s health and wellness initiative.  Prior to that, Ryan practiced law for nearly a decade at international law firm Hogan Lovells, where she counseled food and agriculture companies around the globe, as well as their trade associations in Washington, D.C.  While at the firm, she also maintained a commitment to a robust pro bono practice, handling civil rights, death penalty, and political asylum cases.

Susan Velasco

Susan Velasco is an accomplished product leader, entrepreneur, and startup investor. She currently leads the Startup Product Strategy team at AWS, where she develops product-driven solutions to enable startups to succeed. Prior to that, she led the Product Strategy and Innovation team at GoCanvas, optimizing the product portfolio through pricing, packaging and new product development. Susan’s extensive experience also includes founding an e-commerce company, building and launching the CARFAX Car Care product, and leading Business Analytics teams for Fortune 500 companies.
Susan brings over 20 years of experience in the areas of product management, digital marketing, entrepreneurship, and business intelligence across a wide variety of industries. Her extensive background in data analysis, combined with her passion for creating amazing user experiences, brings a unique data-based decision making approach to product development. She has built and led high performing teams to create and launch several successful products across a wide range of industries, including e-commerce, automotive, cloud computing, media, B2C Information Services and B2B SaaS.
Susan serves on the board of Citrine Angels and mentors early to mid-stage startup companies. In 2021 she was named a “Power Woman of DC Tech” by DCA Live.