VC Named To SBA Post

Winslow Sargeant, Ph.D., a Managing Director at Venture Investors LLC, has been nominated to a key administration post as Chief Counsel for Advocacy, Small Business Administration, by President Barack Obama. The nomination is subject to Senate confirmation.

Press release:

President Barack Obama announced his intent to nominate Venture Investors’ Managing Director Winslow Sargeant, Ph.D. to a key administration post as Chief Counsel for Advocacy, Small Business Administration. The nomination is subject to Senate confirmation. Dr. Sargeant is currently Managing Director at Venture Investors LLC, a venture capital firm that is principally focused on initiating investments during the formative stages of technology and biotechnology companies that have spun out of leading research institutions in Wisconsin, Michigan and the Midwest.

“Naturally, we are disappointed about the potential loss of a valued member of our investment team. On the other hand, we share Winslow’s excitement over a once in a lifetime opportunity,” said John Neis, Managing Director of Venture Investors.

In leading the Office of Advocacy within the U.S Small Business Administration, Dr. Sargeant’s role will be to protect, strengthen and effectively represent the nation’s small businesses within the federal government’s legislative and rule-making processes. The Office of Advocacy works to reduce the burdens that federal policies impose on small firms and maximize the benefits small businesses receive from the government. Advocacy’s mission, simply stated, is to encourage policies that support the development and growth of American small business. “Small business is the backbone of our economy”, said Sargeant. “I look forward to the opportunity to serve in this important role as its advocate.”

Dr. Sargeant’s experiences as an entrepreneur, a SBIR program manager at the National Science Foundation, and a venture capitalist give him a unique range of private and public perspectives that make him an attractive nominee for this important position. The team at Venture Investors looks forward to the opportunity to continue to work with Winslow in his new role.

Dr. Sargeant has been a Managing Director in the technology practice at Venture Investors since 2006. “Winslow served as an advisor to our firm for several years before joining our team”, said Managing Director Scott Button. “It has been an honor to work on several deals with him, and we are confident he will bring a unique set of experiences to his new role.” Sargeant currently serves on the Boards of two Venture Investors portfolio companies, Silatronix and Pattern Insight.

From 2001 to 2005, he was the program manager for the Small Business Innovations Research (SBIR) Program in Electronics, a new office in the National Science Foundation’s (NSF) Engineering Directorate. Previously, Sargeant co-founded Aanetcom, a fabless semiconductor chip startup company with seed funding from Cisco systems which was acquired by PMC-Sierra. Prior to Aanetcom, he held senior engineering positions at Lucent, AT&T Bell Labs and IBM. Sargeant currently serves as a Director of the University of Wisconsin Foundation and is the Vice Chairman of the UW-Madison Astronomy Board of Visitors. He is a member of the Boards of Directors of WiCell, WiSys and the Waisman Center. Sargeant is a Trustee for the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation (WARF) and also serves on Purdue University Discovery Center’s Research Board of Visitors. He is a member of the Advisory Board of NSF’s Industrial Innovation and Partnership Division (NSF/SBIR). Winslow received the inaugural 2002 Wisconsin Distinguished Young Alumni Award and was a 2003 Outstanding Engineering Alumni Awardee from Northeastern University. He received a B.S. from Northeastern University, an M.S. from Iowa State University and his Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, all in Electrical Engineering. Sargeant is also a Kauffman Fellow.

About Venture Investors LLC

Venture Investors is a venture capital firm with $200 million under management. The firm invests in seed and early-stage life science and technology companies in the Midwest, with a primary focus on opportunities that spin out of the region’s leading research universities. Formed in 1982, Venture Investors has offices strategically located next to the country’s third and fourth largest research institutions in Ann Arbor, Mich., and Madison, Wis. For additional information on the firm, visit