In Memoriam: Keith Grinstein

Keith Grinstein, a general partner with Seattle-based VC firm Second Avenue Partners, has passed away at the age of 48 from an apparent heart attack.

Keith began his career as an attorney and later made his fortune in the telecom industry with McCaw Cellular, AT&T Wireless and Nextel. In 2000, he and three partners co-founded Second Avenue, using their own personal wealth rather than raising third-party funds. The focus was on early-stage technology companies, particular those based in the Pacific Northwest. Board seats at the time of his death included F5 Networks and Labor Ready, plus the chairmanship of Coinstar Inc. (Nasdaq: CSTR). He also served as a strategic advisor to Madrona Venture Capital.

Nick Hanauer of Second Avenue Partners said the following to Xconomy: “Keith was an extraordinarily talented man. He was incredibly bright, educated and informed. He could do the Saturday NY Times crossword in about 15 minutes. It was humiliating to even be in the room with him when he was doing it.”

Keith is survived by his wife Claire, his brother and his parents.