The Room Podcast
  • Claudia Laurie, Madison McIlwain
19 episodes
Welcome to the Room. A series interviewing your favorite tech founders and funders. Our guests were in the room where it happened and they’re sharing their stories.


Season 2 Episode 9: Trae Vassallo of Defy.VC
2021 Apr 0645m 37s
In the Season 2 finale of The Room, we sit down with Trae Vassallo, co-founder of early stage venture fund Out of undergrad at Stanford, Trae worked for the iconic design and innovation firm IDEO, developing products for companies including the Palm Pilot and Dell. During her second year of business school at Stanford, Trae founded Good Technology, a mobile device company whose purpose was to connect islanded devices to the Internet. Good Technology sold to Motorola for $500 million. Through a relationship built with John Doerr and Kleiner Perkins backing Good Technology, she then spent 11 years at Kleiner Perkins. In 2016, Trae and fellow industry veteran Neil Sequeira founded where her paths intersected with our co-host Madison a few years back.
Season 2 Episode 8: Liz Meyerdirk of The Pill Club
2021 Mar 3044m 8s
In this week’s episode of The Room, we welcome Liz Meyerdirk, CEO of The Pill Club, a women’s telehealth platform that simplifies and personalizes the experience of prescribing and delivering birth control. Prior to joining The Pill Club Team, Liz was a founding member of the Uber Eats team, leading strategy and global business development for six years. As The Pill Club hit a $100 million run rate, Liz joined as chief executive officer, now leading the team into an exciting product line launch that we have the exclusive on!
Season 2 Episode 7: Zubin Koticha of Opyn
2021 Mar 2338m 54s
This week on The Room, we sat down with Zubin Koticha, co-founder and CEO of Opyn. Opyn is a decentralized finance platform for ethereum options, which recently raised their series A, lead by Paradigm only months after their seed.
Season 2 Episode 6: Allison Barr Allen of Fast
2021 Mar 1636m 16s
In this week’s episode of The Room, we talk to Allison Barr Allen, Co-Founder and COO of Fast, a one-click, passwordless checkout platform. Allison started her career as tech consultant with PwC then joined Uber in its early days, eventually serving as Head of Global Product Operations on the Money Team. While launching Uber Money products including Instant Pay, Cash, and Wallets, Allison delved into the world of angel investing. In 2019, she met her Fast Co-Founder Domm Holland on Twitter, and within a few months had raised a Series A funding of $20 million. Less than a year later, the Fast team raised $102 million in Series B Funding led by Stripes this January.
Season 2 Episode 5: Sridhar Ramaswamy of Neeva
2021 Mar 0937m 50s
Claudia and Madison welcome Sridhar Ramaswamy, CEO and Co-Founder of Neeva, into The Room this week. Sridhar immigrated from India for his PhD in Data Science at Brown, back in 1989. Today, Sridhar is a Silicon Valley legend, first growing Google’s search ad program to a $115 million business as the Senior Vice President of Ads and Commerce. After 15 years with Google, he joined Greylock as a Partner, a position he still holds today. Now, he’s also onto his newest venture called Neeva, an ad-free private search engine that just announced its Series B funding of $40 million led by Sequoia Capital and Greylock. Through Neeva, Sridhar is rebuilding trust within the Internet, reimagining the ways we can use data for value.
Season 2 Episode 4: Jesse Draper of Halogen Ventures
2021 Mar 0225m 58s
In this week’s episode, we welcome Jesse Draper, Emmy-nominated television star turned venture capitalist who founded Halogen Ventures, an early-stage venture firm focused on investing in female entrepreneurs. You’ve seen her on TV in The Naked Brothers Band and as the host of The Valley Girl Show, interviewing tech and business entrepreneurs like Elon Musk and Mark Cuban. As a fourth-generation venture capitalist, Jesse moved away from entertainment to build her own venture firm, Halogen Ventures, which invests entirely in female founding teams. Having recently closed her second fund, Jesse is just getting started on changing the technology ecosystem for the better.
Season 2 Episode 3: Jane Metcalfe of Wired
2021 Feb 2329m 9s
This week on The Room, we sit down with Jane Metcalfe. Jane was the co-founder of the legendary Wired magazine and media company, TCHO chocolates, and now NEO.LIFE.
Season 2 Episode 2: Ajay Kori of Urban Stems
2021 Feb 1639m 28s
In this episode, co-hosts Madison and Claudia, interview Ajay Kori, co-founder and former CEO of UrbanStems. They find out more about his journey of founding and scaling this massively successful eCommerce flower delivery service business.
Season 2 Episode 1: Amy Chang of Accompany
2021 Feb 0936m 17s
In this episode of The Room, Claudia and Madison kick off the new season with Amy Chang, Co-Founder of Accompany, an AI-driven relationship intelligence platform acquired by Cisco in 2018 for $270 million. we hear from a first-time founder and long term product guru on the ups and downs of transitioning from big tech to founding a company. Listen here to learn about the power of early career decisions, battling anxiety and uncertainty, and the right reasons to sell your company.
Season 1 Recap: Claudia & Madison
2021 Feb 0231m 18s
And that’s a wrap on Season 1! Thank you so much to all of our listeners for joining us on The Room! We have big plans for Season 2, launching Tuesday, Feb.9, but before we enter the room where it happened with a whole new slew of entrepreneurs, we take a look back on Season 1, its guests, and our biggest takeaways.