I feel like I can speak for all women when I say that there’s nothing hotter than a cute guy holding a baby. Even women who don’t like babies get all doe-eyed at the sight of a hot guy holding a baby. So in honor of Father’s Day this Sunday, we thought we’d do a quick run-down of some of the hot dads of Silicon Valley. Hold onto your ovaries, ‘cause you’re about to hear some pretty hot entrepreneur and VC dads talking about babies.
Kevin Hartz, CEO, Eventbrite
Kevin and wife Julia Hartz co-founded Eventbrite together in 2006 and have grown the company to some 200 employees while raising over $78 million in financing from such top VC firms as Sequoia Capital, Tenaya Capital, European Founders Fund, and more. The company’s most recent Series E round in May 2011 raked in $50 million from Tiger Global Management. The father of two (ages four and five months) has this to say about fatherhood and entrepreneurship:
I feel a lot of balance and perspective as a father of two young daughters. I really treasure and love the time I spend with my girls. Being a father has given me a longer term perspective of the business as I view Eventbrite as much more of a marathon than a sprint.
Raj Kapoor, Managing Director, Mayfield Fund
You probably know Raj Kapoor from his work at Mayfield Fund, where he’s invested in companies like RedBeacon, Fixya, Zimride, Tagged, and more. Or you may know him as the lead singer of the Silicon Valley boy band Coverflow. What you may not know is that Raj Kapoor is a totally hot dad with four kids in tow. The father of one girl (10) and three boys (9, 3, and 1) offers this advice for entrepreneurs:
Life is all about a balance – it’s super hard to juggle entrepreneurship and family as you constantly feel you are short changing both. However, your happiness at home feeds into your work and vice versa – so you gotta do it. I find setting aside specific time on my schedule for family (6-9pm three nights during the week and most of the weekends) is the only way to make it work, otherwise something allegedly “important” always gets in the way.
Kapoor says he also includes his two older kids in some work events to set a good example and spend more time with them. If that’s not hot enough for you, you should see Raj in his shiny gold jacket and matching pants when he’s singing for Coverflow.
Thomas Korte, founder, AngelPad
The incubator founder has become a household name in Silicon Valley for boosting up such startups as Vungle, Frugalo (which was acquired by TwitVid in March), Stickery, and more. The angel investor and former Googler is also dad to six-and-a-half-year-old son Victor and has some great words of wisdom on navigating Silicon Valley as a parent. “In Silicon Valley it seems to be ok to come to work at 11 am, but not to leave at 6 pm – no matter how early you start,” he says. His advice: “Get in the office early and make sure co-workers know about it.” He also suggests:
Set rules and manage expectations: Most startup founders and employees don't have kids and do not understand how precious the time between 5 pm and bedtime is. Set expectation with co-workers that you are offline during that time. Don't spoil the time with your kids answering emails on your iPhone.
Surround yourself with people in the same situation: Let's face it, having kids changes your life fundamentally and no one understands that until you have kids. If you are around co-workers with kids, your workday will be more in-sync. Look for a company that has parents working there. If you are a founder, think about setting up an on-site child care. It will make every one's life much easier and it will certainly help attracting top talent.
Ezra Roizen, Partner, Ackrell Capital
Our very own Ezra Roizen is a partner at boutique investment bank Ackrell Capital and an advisor at Vator. You probably also know him as the emcee of all of our Vator Splash events (he was the brain power behind the Vator Splash drinking game). He and Vator CEO Bambi Francisco (a hot Silicon Valley mom) have four sons together, ranging in age from 11 years to two months! “There’s a misconception that you need to hide your kids from your work life,” he says. “If you work 24 hours a day, like most in Silicon Valley do, then you are destined to fail as a parent.” He suggests taking the kiddos with you on work trips and going to the park when meeting up a fellow dad business associate. And of course, “Be good to your wife/partner/husband – you need them even more if you’re a Silicon Valley dad!” But he also urges other Silicon Valley dads to keep it real:
Find a balance with your life with your startup dreams – if you’re 23 and single you can live on ramen, but if you’re 35 with three kids, you sometimes have to forgo some of the riskier stuff in order to put the food on the table. There’s still great stuff to do in Silicon Valley – even if it does mean you get a little more in your paycheck and a little less in your option plan.
STAY IN SHAPE – carve out a little time for you and use that time taking a run – or no one will ever ask you to be in the HOT DADS OF SILICON VALLEY column on Vator.tv ; )
Tim Chang, Managing Director, Mayfield Fund
Tim Chang has become pretty adept at spotting rising stars in gaming and social networking, having invested in ngmoco (which was acquired by DeNA for $403 million), Playdom (acquired by Disney in $763 million), Iridigm (acquired by Qualcomm for $200 million), Branchout, Lumos Labs, and Badgeville, among others. He’s also pretty well-known for having easily the best voice in Silicon Valley. It’s like an Americanized Pierce Brosnan. He’s also a hot dad-to-be! He and his wife are expecting their first baby. So he has no advice for others as of yet and describes himself as “expecting, excited, terrified, and clueless.” That sounds like an invitation for unsolicited parenting advice if I ever heard one.