Astia Continues to Secure Sponsorships and Support from Industry Heavyweights

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Leading VCs and Attorney Appointed to Board of Trustees, Fenwick & West LLP Renews Sponsorship for a Sixth Year

Our companies continue to see exceptional results, with more than 60% of our Venture Conference companies receiving funding since 2003

Astia, which provides programs that accelerate the funding and growth of women-led start-ups across all areas of technology, today announced the appointment of three new board members: Jeff Karras, General Partner, Levensohn Venture Partners; Prashant Shah, Managing Director, Hummer Winblad Venture Partners; and Rob Dellenbach, Partner, Fenwick & West LLP. Also, Fenwick & West LLP, a leading law firm to technology and life sciences companies and sponsor of Astia since 2002, has renewed its Platinum sponsorship for a third year. These new appointments and key sponsorship provide valuable direction and support as Astia extends its services for women entrepreneurs across the country.

"Our companies continue to see exceptional results, with more than 60% of our Venture Conference companies receiving funding since 2003," said Sharon Vosmek, CEO of Astia. "These results could not be achieved without the organizations and individuals who partner with us."

Jeff Karras, of Levensohn Venture Partners, specializes in enterprise software, communications and wireless technologies, with particular interests in security, business analytics, and new Internet media. In addition to his recent appointment to Astia's Board of Trustees, Karras currently serves on Astia's Board of Advisors, Executive Council and acts as both a coach and a mentor to Astia's entrepreneurs.

Commenting on his new role Karras said, "Over the years, the Astia community has helped women build successful technology companies that are high-quality and profitable investment opportunities for the venture industry. As an active member of this community, I am excited to continue Astia's important work as a member of the Board of Trustees."

Prashant Shah is Managing Director at Hummer Winblad Venture Partners, a firm that has been investing exclusively in early stage software companies since 1989. Shah is a Charter Member of TiE Silicon Valley, where he is Chair of the Software SIG. Shah also serves on Astia's Board of Advisors and Executive Council.

Rob Dellenbach has counseled entrepreneurs and investors as a corporate and intellectual property attorney at Fenwick & West LLP since 1989. He advises start-ups and venture-backed companies on business strategy, and on many financial and legal issues ranging from intellectual property protection and licensing, to mergers and acquisitions and public offerings.

"Over the years, we have worked with many of Astia's entrepreneurs, offering our legal services to help build high-quality, successful technology companies," said Gordon Davidson, firm chairman and partner, corporate group, Fenwick & West. "As Astia expands its programs nationally, we are excited to offer the organization support that will help create a new generation of influential business leaders."

About Astia
Astia is a not for profit organization dedicated to fostering the full participation and leadership of women in entrepreneurship and as accelerators of high growth businesses. Astia accelerates the funding and growth of companies through three exclusive programs: Astia Venture Conference Funding Programâ„¢, Astia Portfolio Programâ„¢ and the Astia Next Level Programâ„¢, each designed for Seed to Mezzanine. These programs are supported by the over 344 members of Astia's Advisor Network that includes more than 70 former and current CEOs and 75 investors. To learn more about Astia please visit

For more information contact:
Kirsten Davidson


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