On March 14, 2018 Brian Dixon, Partner with Kapor Capital, received an award at San Francisco’s AT&T Park for being chosen as one of the San Francisco Business Times 40 Under 40. Dixon was not only one of the few people of color who received this prestigious honor but is one of the youngest African American partners in any venture capital firm, period.
For Dixon, this acknowledgement marks a milestone in his career, rivaled only by what he calls one of his most memorable experiences, receiving the call to join Kapor Capital. “It was a game changer for my career and I definitely wouldn’t be here without that experience back in 2011” says Dixon.
Now as partner, Dixon focuses on identifying and evaluating early-stage investments while helping portfolio companies grow effectively. At just 34 years old, Dixon fits right into the 40 Under 40 criteria, “young business leaders who are making their mark on the Bay Area and the world.” While the 40 Under 40 list may exemplify young up and coming entrepreneurs and leaders throughout various industries, Dixon is aware that when it comes to diversity, there’s still more work to be done.
“When I started in venture capital, there weren’t too many people who looked like me… Now we’re starting to see more women and more people of color in VC, especially at the earlier roles, I think we’ve got a lot of work to do in the more senior positions but over time those things will change, and the landscape will change of who gets to participate in venture capital” says Dixon.
For Dixon, although this is a prestigious honor, there is a bittersweet reminder that while he is currently on the receiving end of accolades for his work throughout his career, there still needs to be light shed on serious issues within venture capital. “It felt great to be selected as one of the 40 under 40, I think of this award as the next wave of leadership in our respective industries and you know one of the things that I noticed at the event is I felt like one of the few people of color and I hope that in the future, more people get selected for this award because I think there’s great talent out there that just needs to be recognized for this type of award.”
Watch my full interview with Dixon above to learn more about his background and his initial reaction to being selected as one of the San Francisco Business Times 40 Under 40.