September 9th, 2023

I’m thrilled to share that we recently closed a $2 million seed extension round of funding, which brings our total to $2.5 million in our first 2.5 years of business.

Unfortunately, in the world of women entrepreneurs, a $2 million raise is pretty rare and remarkable. Less than 2% of investment goes to women-founded businesses, and yet 43% of public companies started as venture-backed companies, funded by a venture community that even today is 40% graduates of Stanford or Harvard, 82% male, and 70% white.

Armed with this understanding, and surrounded by an amazing community of 1200 incredible women leaders, we sought funding our own way.

Athena Alliance is a membership platform comprising a powerful community of Impact. With Athena’s support, each leader in our community is building her Portfolio of Impact™ whether that means serving on a board, launching a business, investing, or more likely, a combination of these. Athena members have 20, 30, and 40 years of career behind them. They aren’t done yet. They see 10, 20, and 30 years of impact to go. Each of us and all of us collectively intend to remain relevant, contemporary, and nimble in this fast-paced ever-changing world.

Since day one, “unleashing impact” has been a central theme of ours as we build a next-generation business – it guides us as we reimagine and evolve the way leaders advance, as we build a business with a promise to a community that lasts (read our Manifesto), and as we seek funding to fuel growth.

It’s always been important to us that Athena is owned by the community it supports. We have always been determined that the opportunity to fuel the mission and growth of the business would be given to those who are historically locked out. You can see this not only in the diversity of our members, but also in our coaches, our staff, our advisors, our leadership, and our investors.

When it came time to raise $2 million to fuel growth, it was natural to turn to our members. As a result of having done so, we’re thrilled to say that 87% of the cap table are women, 29% are people of color (our membership overall is 39% racially diverse), and 3% are LGBTQ+.

Our members feel (and have) a sense of ownership within this community. They want to see us grow and want to see us do so with careful respect to the balance of three core metrics – new membership, retention of members over time, and continuously adding value year over year. We will use the funds received to expand Athena’s leadership, education, and sales teams, and make further investments in member services, including courses and content. With this investment, Athena also intends to expand its newly launched Athena Academy, a suite of customized career and coaching programs.

The ownership makeup of Athena is particularly important as the purpose of the company is to ensure that those who have been written out of the top of business history, are now activated, amplified and supported as they achieve their place, as board members, as c-suite leaders, as investors in next-generation businesses, and as entrepreneurs. As they unleash their Portfolio of Impact™.

Here is a list of our member-owners (those who wished to remain anonymous have not been included):

Adriana Muñoz, Andrea Bonime-Blanc, Gabriele Famous, Gail Marcus, Gavriella Schuster, Harini Gokul, Heather Zindel, Jane Firth, Julie Cullivan, Katrinka McCallum, Krissy Gathright, Linda Medler, Liz Tinkham, Mirna Daouk, Patti Newcomer, Purvee Kondal, Randi Feigin, Rebecca Jones, Rhonda Mims, Sandi Finn, Suja Chandrasekaran, Tammy Schuring, Yvonne Wassenaar



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