Startup Grind is an event series and website designed to help educate, inspire, and connect local entrepreneurs. Each month we welcome an amazing speaker who shares their story with our community and tells us what worked, what didn’t, and what they’ll do differently next time. It’s an amazing opportunity to learn from the best, network with other members of the startup community, and improve your chances of entrepreneurial success.
Kef Kasdin received her BSE degree from Princeton University in 1985 in what is now ORFE, with a certificate in Science and Policy from the Woodrow Wilson School; and an MBA from Stanford’s Graduate School of Business in 1989. Early in her career she was a management consultant at what was then Booz, Allen & Hamilton, working on operations, manufacturing and then marketing assignments. She joined 3Com Corporation in 1990 as a product manager, then was promoted to lead the product management and marketing functions; she became general manager of a $1B division in 1997 and the first Executive in Residence, Office of the Chairman at 3Com in late 1998. In several of these roles she led key intrapreneurship initiatives. Kef and her family have been back in Princeton since 1999. She was an independent consultant to several startups in communications after moving back. From 2003 to 2015 Kef led Battelle Ventures’ investments in cleantech and started several companies based on Department of Energy Lab technologies. As Founder and CEO of Proterro, she was named among the top people in the bioeconomy for four years in a row. Kef is also actively involved in several nonprofit organizations including serving on the Boards of Directors of and contributing to the strategy, fundraising and innovative new programming goals at Rachel’s Network; Princeton AlumniCorps; and Jewish Family & Children’s Service of Greater Mercer County. At the University, Kef teaches EGR 201, “Foundations of Entrepreneurship” and is also an Executive in Residence for the Office of Technology Licensing.