Fearless Fund Partners
Arian Simone, Founding Partner
Arian Simone, Founder and CEO of Arian Simone Enterprises, is a serial entrepreneur, philanthropist, angel investor, author, and PR & marketing specialist. Arian received her MBA from Florida A&M and has over 17 years of entrepreneurial experience from pioneering and growing a successful PR and marketing firm to founding Fearless Magazine and the Fearless Platform in 2010 with a mission of inspiring millennial entrepreneurial women. Arian has transitioned from working with billion-dollar corporate entertainment clients to raising a venture capital fund focused on investing in women of color led startup companies. She believes that every woman of color entrepreneur should have the opportunity to raise capital from someone across the table who looks like them.
Keshia Knight Pulliam, General Partner
Keshia is the youngest person to ever be nominated for an Emmy Award. Decades after making her debut in entertainment she continues to be among the most loved and respected actresses in the business. After eight seasons of playing the iconic Rudy Huxtable on the groundbreaking Emmy and Golden Globe award winning television show “The Cosby Show”, Keshia decided to turn her focus toward education. Keshia graduated with honors from Spelman College in 2001 with a B.A. in Sociology and a concentration in Film. Upon graduation from Spelman College, Keshia continued acting and won 4 NAACP Image awards for work on “The House of Payne”. In 2010, Keshia started her non-profit The Kamp Kizzy Foundation and, in 2016, expanded her brand to launch her weekly podcast Kandidly Keshia and spice line Keshia’s Kitchen.
Ayana Parsons, General Partner
Ayana is a Principal at Heidrick & Struggles’ focused on placing chief marketing officers, general managers and other commercial C-suite executives into consumer-facing companies. Prior to joining Heidrick & Struggles, Ayana served as global head of retail, consumer & lifestyle industries at the World Economic Forum. Additionally, she hosted forums in the US, Europe, Asia, and Latin America to address the many challenges facing today’s global business leaders. Ayana graduated summa cum laude with a BS in Management and her MBA in Marketing from Florida A&M University. She currently serves as an advisor and board member for several prominent organizations including the World Retail Congress and Retail Leader’s Circle.
Rodney Sampson is a serial entrepreneur who cofounded, built and sold Multicast Media Technologies, EFactor (EFCT) and Intellectual Currency, a world class integrated go-to-market, publishing, diversity and advisory firm with clients ranging from major Hollywood film studios, cable networks, tech companies, global corporations, publishers and African heads of state. In 2013, Sampson co-founded Opportunity Hub as a follow up to the highly successful Kingonomics’ book release. Today, as Executive Chairman & CEO of Opportunity Hub, Sampson is focused on scaling its suite of collaborative and interconnected technology products, programs, initiatives and fund globally. Sampson is also a Nonresident Senior Fellow in the Metropolitan Policy Program at the Brooking Institution in Washington, DC and a Professor of Entrepreneurship at Morehouse College in Atlanta, GA. Sampson previously served as the 1st Head of Diversity at Mark Burnett Productions, executive producers of the hit ABC show, ABC’s Shark Tank.
Tracy Gray is currently the Founder and Managing Partner of The 22 Fund, a growth venture capital and advisory firm focused on increasing the export capacity of Southern California companies, positioning these companies to accelerate growth and scale via international sales. She is also an Executive in Residence at the Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI) and chairs LACI’s Diversity in Entrepreneurship Advisory Council. In addition, Ms. Gray is the founder of the non-profit We Are Enough (WAE). WAE’s only mission is to educate ALL women on how and why to invest in women-owned, for-profit businesses or with a “gender lens.” Ms. Gray was formerly Senior Advisor to the LA Mayor, an investment professional at a venture capital fund and a systems engineer on the Space Shuttle program. Ms. Gray holds a B.S. in Mathematical Science with an aeronautics emphasis from the UC Santa Barbara and dual MBAs from Columbia University and UC, Berkeley.
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