We’re a team of market and brand experts with investor discipline.
Meet our West Directors
You can’t connect the dots going forward.
Allison wholeheartedly believes in the massive potential and world-changing impact that her partners can bring about. Armed with a unique ability to frame complex problems and flatten learning curves, she takes a pragmatic approach to the work, allowing her to remove noise and effect immediate change for her companies. Allison has partnered with dozens of companies across a wide-range of industries and in various stages in their growth.
Originally from the Bay Area, Allison has extensive experience working on globally distributed teams and has lived across the U.S., Europe, and Southeast Asia. She graduated magna cum laude from Columbia University with a B.A. in cultural anthropology and earned an M.B.A. from Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business. Prior to West, she spent several years as a fellow of the Malaysia Blue Ocean Strategy Institute, working closely with the Malaysian government on initiatives to stoke entrepreneurship in the country, and leading a team responsible for the productization of Blue Ocean Strategy. She began her career as an analyst at Goldman Sachs and Co. in New York in both Asset-Backed Security and Hedge Fund & Private Equity industry groups. Answering a call to enter creative services, Allison went on to gain expertise in interactive production, pedagogical design, project management, business model design, and strategy. Her global background and mix of right and left brain thinking are ever-present in her work.
Allison loves podcasts and audio fiction, and also serves as the head of finance for Mermaid Palace, an art collective. In her spare time, she’s a serious home chef, does decent botanical illustration, speaks Italian moderately well, plays the cello poorly, and is the worst roller skater in San Francisco, where she lives.
Head Of Talent
Managing compassionately is not just a better way to build a team, it’s a better way to build a company.
- Jeff Weiner
Arthur believes that there is almost nothing that can’t be achieved through good conversation. It is the common trait across his experiences as an entrepreneur, sales executive, recruiter, operator, and investor, and it is how he connects amazing individuals to critical roles at our companies. The combination of these experiences is also what enables Arthur to see the potential in every individual and know exactly where and how they can be most impactful within an organization.
Prior to coming to West, Arthur was with LinkedIn during its hypergrowth and eventual acquisition by Microsoft. During his time there, Arthur advised company executives who used LinkedIn for hiring and their overall talent acquisition strategy. His experience advising many different startups gave him a front row seat to the challenges and importance of hiring the right talent. This experience furthered his perspective on how essential it is for a company to be aligned around a central core – the process of defining vision, mission, strategy and objectives.
Arthur joined LinkedIn from QuinStreet where he was responsible for driving growth across clients in the education space. Before QuinStreet, he worked at a Madrid based startup and managed all English language customer support. While attending Santa Clara University, where he earned a Bachelor of Science in Management, Arthur founded Bronco Student Services providing food delivery, laundry, and storage to services for students. The company is still in operation today.
Arthur will jump at any invitation to go skiing. Just say ‘powder’ and he is on his way. He fulfills his creative interests making furniture and pasta, as well as learning new hands-on skills.
Director of Production
Don’t play what’s there, play what’s not there.
- Miles Davis
Carlton is a veteran producer, curator, entrepreneur, and former academic who has worked across Film, TV and business. He leads multifaceted creative projects that are commensurate with the grand visions (and often modest resources) of early-stage companies.
Motivated by a thirst for knowledge and an endless desire for new experiences, Carlton moved from his hometown of Montréal to the Bay Area where he earned his PhD in Film Theory from Stanford University. With nearly two decades of creative production experience for a range of clients including Cisco, Facebook, Oakland Museum of California, and Mountain Hardwear, Carlton’s television and film work has premiered at festivals such as Sundance, Tribeca, and SXSW. Carlton is the founder of the Disposable Film Festival, which celebrates innovation in new media filmmaking internationally, as well as the co-founder of PROJECTOR, an organization that puts companies, causes, and directors together to create films inspired by revolutionary ideas. Carlton’s work at West brings his engagement with film and documentary full circle, helping new companies translate their stories and giving them life through multimedia.
Since relocating to Berkeley in 2014, he’s fully embraced the warmer climate and East Bay lifestyle, spending most of his time outdoors hiking or in the family garden with his wife and daughter.
It don't take a whole day to recognize sunshine.
Felicia specializes in creating design systems and brand identities that map to business needs and scale alongside ever-growing brands. A multi-faceted designer, she infuses every project with the knowledge of how design must underscore product, marketing and company strategy. Felicia creates visual, connected stories that bring brands to life and give founders the tools to share their unique vision with the world.
Originally from The Bronx, New York, Felicia holds an MBA in Design Strategy from California College of the Arts in San Francisco and is a graduate of Purchase College where she majored in Media, Society and the Arts with a special interest in installation art. A creative leader in developing global branding systems, digital experiences, and advertising campaigns, Felicia has led from concept to execution for brands such as Cisco, L’Oreal, Dove, Google Pixel, Maps AU, Rolex, Product (Red), Nest, and more.
Felicia is currently based in Brooklyn, NY. She is an instructor at Parsons School Of Design: Design & Management program for Marketing, Public Relations And Branding. She is a design leader and member of AIGA’s Women In Leadership & Design (WILD) committee and an Art Director for the organization.
What would we think if the telephone was invented after email?
Jeremy is a creative hybrid whose breadth of work includes advertising campaigns, product transformations, acquisition marketing, creative activations, experiential spaces, partnerships, retail, identity expressions, and brand development. Jeremy designs for the space where product, creative, and communications meet. He specializes in architecting end-to-end experiences, from awareness, through the product journey to engagement to advocacy.
Jeremy started his career in politics, holds a degree in Political Science from Point Loma Nazarene University, and also attended The Graduate School of Political Management at George Washington University, taking on a variety of roles on Capitol Hill, before switching to the brand world. Prior to West, Jeremy worked as Creative Director and Producer at both Weiden + Kennedy and the Martin Agency where he collaborated with a variety of world-class brands including Wal-Mart, Comcast, American Cancer Society, Microsoft, Nike, Target, Starbucks, Honda, and Old Spice. Jeremy has been recognized with several awards including One Club’s Best of the Digital Decade, a Cannes Grand Prix, and the ANDY Innovation Award.
Jeremy previously served as the adjunct professor for the Creative Technology track at VCU Brandcenter. If he’s not at his desk, Jeremy is wandering the streams, forests, volcanos, deserts, and coffee shrines around Portland Oregon with family, friends and creatures.
Design Strategy Director
Good design is like clear thinking made visual.
- Edward Tufte
Jess is the bridge between design and strategy who helps partners simplify and then visualize complex and often-times competing concepts within their business and product. Jess has partnered with dozens of companies from seed to growth stage to help steer and heighten the brand to increase enterprise value and create better business outcomes.
Jess holds a BFA in graphic design from Maryland Institute College of Art, and an MBA from California College of the Arts. Currently based in San Francisco, she has lived in New York, Baltimore, Erlangen (Germany), Beijing, and her hometown Taipei. And it is her dual design and strategy vantage points––compounded by a deep awareness and appreciation for other cultures––that allow her to fly at different altitudes of expertise while maintaining a shared vision and path forward with every partner. Prior to West, Jess was the 5th hire at doc.ai, a digital health company where she helped grow the business 5X and close two successful rounds of funding. Jess’s portfolio covers local and international clientele including UNICEF, FWD.us, National Wildlife Federation, Ashoka, Aecom, Tegna, and Adobe.
Jess is also part of the organizing team at TEDx SanFrancisco and Social Capital Market (SOCAP), and teaches at design-orientated universities to share her belief that “designers have so much more to offer beyond the pixels.” She serves as an advisor and mentor with The Last Mile, Year Up, and Quarter Zero.
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever has.
- Margaret Mead
Joanna Rees is committed to changing what historically has been deemed impossible in the world of startups and venture capital. As a seasoned brand marketer, company builder and investor, she has spent her career embracing the idea that “the best way to change the future is to create it”. Joanna supports entrepreneurial leaders at the intersection of brand creation, company scaling, and growth.
In addition to her work at West, Joanna currently serves on the board of FICO (NYSE: FICO), Tentrr, Prelude Fertility, Boon Supply, and Perch. Joanna has previously served on numerous boards including Care.com (NYSE: CARE), Leapfrog (NYSE: LEAP), Quinstreet (Nasdaq: QNST), The Coppola Company, National Venture Capital Association, Endeavor Global, New Schools Venture Fund, and as a Senior Partner of the B Team. Joanna was also a candidate for Mayor of San Francisco in 2011––a first-hand exercise in building a personal brand. Joanna was named a Global Leader for Tomorrow by the World Economic Forum and a Henry Crown Fellow by the Aspen Institute, where she now moderates the Henry Crown Fellowship.
Joanna brings significant experience in venture capital, finance, and investment banking––as the Founder of VSP Capital along with roles in investment banking doing M&A and private placements––to West. With deep roots in marketing and branding, she has held several senior marketing leadership roles at Danone and DMB&B. She previously led the formation and capital raise for Endeavor Catalyst, Endeavor Global’s impact investment fund.
Joanna isn’t afraid to turn things upside down having been a gymnast at Duke University where she earned a BS in Psychology and her MBA in Finance at Columbia University. Joanna strives to create opportunities for women as the Board Chair of The Representation Project and on the board of Him For Her and its affiliated public benefit corporation, Illumyn. She loves to cook, especially when she can use the ingredients from her garden. She and her husband, John Hamm, talk leadership, play golf and bike ride, having (hopefully) successfully raised their four children.
Matt is a writer, researcher and marketer who has spent his career at the intersection of business and culture. He balances deep experience and an open-mindedness, making him an empathetic leader and brand builder who cuts right to the thesis of any story. Matt sits across the firm’s studio engagements and portfolio companies, ensuring that the full breadth of his own and the team’s experience is deployed to create the maximum value and impact.
Matt joined West in 2016 from Google where he served as the Global Head of Brand Experience alongside the Search, Maps and Translate teams. Prior to Google, Matt spent nearly a decade at Red Bull, in London and Los Angeles, leading the brand’s iconic work in action sports, music and events. His credits include producing an event racing airplanes along the river Thames in front of 40,000 spectators, making front-page news by jumping Tower Bridge on a motocross bike and working with a who’s-who of the music industry in programming 500 music events a year, including month-long festivals in New York and Los Angeles. He built and programed recording studios, art galleries, and has made numerous films and documentaries including a 10 part series memorializing a Google-funded amateur space race which he produced with JJ Abrams and Bad Robot.
Matt advises a number of companies in the culture and tech space and sits on the board of Switcher Studio, a West portfolio company. He is also the co-founder of AGEIST, a media and research consultancy. His writing and research has been published in The Economist, Financial Times, The Guardian, Forbes amongst others, and he spoke at Tedx in New York in 2019. Matt holds an undergraduate degree in Psychology and a Masters in Media and Cultural Theory from Goldsmiths, University of London. He is an endurance athlete and is a passionate believer in pencils.