Long-term partners in your success.
We value building enduring relationships with our portfolio companies. We stand by our founders through the highs and lows and see the strength in our partnership as a foundation for success. We built our careers as operators who have grown and supported businesses ourselves, and our mission is to find and help other entrepreneurs do the same.
Bill Driscoll | President
President of Tacoma Venture Fund, Bill founded TVF with a vision of providing an institutional venture capital option for both investors and entrepreneurs in the South Sound. As an active early-stage investor, Bill has a long history of venture investing in Internet ID and presently serves on the boards of Topia Technology and StratusCore. He also has extensive supply chain management and international experience having lived in Hong Kong and Shanghai for four years.
Driscoll also serves as Chairman and CEO of Clearwater Management Company, a registered investment adviser, as managing partner of Lincoln Park Partners, a private commercial real estate and management company, and on the board of PotlatchDeltic (NASDAQ) and as chair of its Nominating and Governance Committee.
A resident of Tacoma, he serves on the Tacoma Art Museum Board and on the finance and investment committees of Annie Wright School. His wife, Lisa, is a professor at the University of Washington, Tacoma. Driscoll served in the Marine Corps and completed tours in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Dennis Joyce | Director of Investments
Dennis Joyce is the Director of Investments at Tacoma Venture Fund. Dennis oversees dealflow, due diligence, and operational functions on behalf of TVF. He has led investments in Vega Cloud, Workflow Labs, and Flavorcloud, among others. Before TVF, Dennis spent 17 years as an independent angel investor and real estate developer.
Dennis is passionate about supporting entrepreneurs and seeing great ideas come to life. He believes a vibrant venture ecosystem needs talent, expertise, and access to capital to thrive. Out of twenty-one pre-TVF angel investments, seventeen have been in female or minority-lead ventures. Dennis is intentional about providing greater access and opportunity to underrepresented founders.
Dennis is an active member of Seattle’s Alliance of Angels and Puget Sound Venture Club. He is also a Board member of the William Factory Business Incubator, which provides training and support for entrepreneurs in Pierce County.
He has an MBA from the University of Notre Dame’s Mendoza College of Business and a bachelor’s degree in History from the University of Notre Dame. In his spare time, he enjoys spending time with his family and trying new things.
Madin Akpo-Esambe | Investment Lead
Madin Akpo-Esambe is an investment lead and operating partner at Tacoma Venture Fund. He leads deals across industries, but has a particular interest in new innovations that disrupt legacy systems.
Madin built his career scaling hyper growth startups as the head of strategy and operations at Divvy Homes and Built Technologies and as an entrepreneur at his own travel-tech startup, Trava. Madin began his career at Goldman Sachs and as a growth strategy consultant at The Cambridge Group where his passion for studying businesses, building relationships, and listening to customers to drive actionable strategic insights took root.
A second generation Cameroonian immigrant, Madin is passionate about advancing diverse representation in tech and business. Throughout his career has served as a mentor and board member of community access non-profits. He envisions a world where underrepresented founders have an equal playing ground to build the next great companies and works to push progress forward in his role as an investor.
He graduated from Northwestern University with a bachelors in economics and organizational management. In his spare time he loves trying new restaurants and recipes with his wife and exploring Seattle’s parks with their two dogs.
Steve Gordon | Managing Director
Steve Gordon is a 4th generation Washingtonian and 3rd generation trucker, who worked with his family to grow Gordon Trucking from its initial 2 trucks in 1946 to over 2,000 when the family sold in 2013. Steve and his family remained closely tied to the trucking industry through their Freightliner dealership business, Gordon Truck Centers, which they initially acquired in 1985, and now has locations throughout Washington, Oregon, and Hawaii.
After serving as the Chief Operating Officer of Gordon Trucking for over 20 years, Steve remains a board member and owner of the dealership, as well as several other family business holdings.
AT TVF, Steve is an active member of our Due Diligence committee and provides a crucial outsiders viewpoint to a company’s exit strategy, having overseen the successful exit of Gordon Trucking. Outside of work he is an avid sports fan, enjoys hunting and fishing, and spends as much time as possible with his wife and three daughters.