Search Interviews:

Jeremy Weisz 3:51

Well, you were at University of Pittsburgh and you want to get your MBA. What did you want to be when you grew up at that

Marcia Dawood 3:58

point? No, I think when I was in college, I really wanted to be a retail buyer. And I did I ended up working and I lived in Pittsburgh. So I there was a two retailers there at the time and I ended up working for the one and kind of move my way up star as an assistant buyer. My first job was as an assistant buyer in the China department. So I have so many dishes that I have been banned from buying any more dishes literally I am not allowed in the dishes department of any store because I have so many dishes from being the assistant buyer that

Jeremy Weisz 4:34

so from corporate America, what would you do after that? Was so

Marcia Dawood 4:39

I actually worked for as buyer for about five years and then I went on to Kaplan education. And so there I was in sales and marketing for 10 years. I then went on to operations and was in operations for about seven years. So I worked in compliance, Career Services, kind of everything the last position I had ever reported right Lickliter the CEO of the company.

Jeremy Weisz 5:01

So the light bulb went on, you know, when you were at that meeting and in talking to your husband. So what was the first step into this? This world?

Marcia Dawood 5:14

Yeah, so I just started going to the meetings, they were pretty convenient they were in the evening. So I would go and get to hear all these different companies present, they were so like extreme, like, there’d be one that was talking about some tech that you could, you know, track your kids sports statistics, or another one that was working on a medical device and something else that was like a pharma drug, they were so different and solving so many big problems, that that really got me interested. But then I ended up moving a bunch of times, because with my husband’s job, we ended up going to New York and Dallas and California and back to Charlotte, we could be here for hours talking just about that. But anyway, in the process, every time we moved, we usually for over the last eight years, we’ve been in places for roughly two years at a time, I would learn the ecosystem. And I learned a little bit about everything that was going on in New York City, things that were going on in Texas, and then of course, then I end up in Silicon Valley, which is kind of weird, because usually you hear a lot about this in Silicon Valley first, and then people come out to the other parts of the country. But yeah, really learned a lot and started to learn how little capital very quickly how little capital goes to women, and people of color. And that, to me, was a very interesting statistic to learn. And I became a member of a group called Golden seeds in New York back in 2014. And that’s when I thought, you know, this is, this is where I need to be and and this is where I need to help.

Jeremy Weisz 6:44

Marcia women are really underrepresented. And what do you experience as a woman going through the process, you’re going to the meetings, hearing the pitches and in this in this world?

Marcia Dawood 6:57

So I do remember, so the Angel Capital Association, which is the professional society of angel investors in the US, we have a summit every year. And in some of those early summits that I went to in the, you know, early 2012 2013 timeframe, you know, there was no line for the women’s room, okay, was only lines for the men’s room, which is very odd. So I could already tell that I was in an area where there were not a lot of women. But even in corporate America, I mean, there’s a lot more men at the higher level jobs. And I experienced that also. So, you know, I just, I was realizing it, but also thinking, you know, there’s been so many amazing women ahead of me that have been trailblazers. And I think in a lot of ways, I was thinking, Well, I just want to keep, keep that going. I want to keep, keep doing all that good work. I want

Jeremy Weisz 7:51

to talk and hear how you think about these companies when they’re pitching angel investors. And I know people can check out your website, it’s Marcia Dawood, which is, you know, And then on your portfolio page, you show some of the companies and one of them in particular is cognition, therapeutics, right? When they first came to you will talk about that story. Yeah,

Marcia Dawood 8:21

so this is a really, really interesting Angel story, because they are one of the only companies that has raised so much money from angels that they were able to kind of jump right into getting a significant amount of grants. And then they ended up doing an IPO in 2021. So they raised well over, I think early on, they raised at least $30 million. And then they went on to raise even more millions from from angels, but it was really one of those things that that’s very unusual to raise that much money from angels. Usually if you once you get into the millions, you got to skip over to the VCs. And but the angels really took to cart to this mainly because the scientists who came up with the technology is female. She’s amazing. And she put together a really, really interesting concept and interesting company. And she’s, you know, been peer reviewed and gotten a lot of recognition. And, you know, we’re in very late stage clinical trials right now. So you know, fingers crossed, that this could actually not just stop but maybe even reverse some of the signs of Alzheimer’s. And there are other inclinations also like there could be help for Parkinson’s and even ALS. And I personally have a connection to that as my mom passed away from ALS in 2018. So, I took a real significant look at this company because I thought, wow, this is something that is making a big difference. This could be huge for all the people that have suffered through all of these horrible diseases. and there’s such a mystery, we just we don’t really know what, how that how it happens, how people get it, how can you really prevent it? I mean, of course, we know there’s things about food and water and you know, vitamins and things like that, that you can do. But if it’s hereditary, not hereditary, would you know, what are these things? Believe me, I could, we could have a long, long, long talk about that. Because I’ve spent many, many, many, many, many hours researching and trying to figure out like, How did my mom get ALS? How am I make, make sure I don’t get ALS? Anyway, so back to cognition, I just feel like they have a real strong foundation, a strong mission. And that’s, I think, what attracted so many people, and they’ve just been, you know, hitting the milestones and keeping it going. But I will tell you, you know, a lot of these medical companies, whether it’s a pharma, drug or medical device, I mean, they take a lot of money, and a lot of time. So it’s not like you can say, hey, I’m gonna invest in this to know, you know, like, a year or two later, or we’re gonna have a cure for cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, whatever it is, it really does take a long time, I think Angel started investing in cognition therapeutics in 2010.

Jeremy Weisz 11:09

Decade over a decade later,

Marcia Dawood 11:12

and we’re not there yet. We’re not we’re not at the finish line where we’re getting there, but we’re not there.

Jeremy Weisz 11:17

So Marcia, I want to hear what you look for what you saw in cognition therapists, but what you look for, in general, when you’re listening to someone, pitch and ask for money, your hard earned money. Before we do just tell people a little bit about what is cognition therapeutics do.

Marcia Dawood 11:34

So they are a pharma drug company, they’re they’re working on an actual drug that could help to prevent and, you know, even possibly reverse Alzheimer’s disease.

Jeremy Weisz 11:47

So what do you look for? What did you see in? I mean, I see, obviously, you have a personal connection up, but not all of the companies you invest in, you do have a personal, you know, deep connection with what do you look for?

Marcia Dawood 12:01

I think probably the first thing is about the team. And so this is a good example. I invested in a company in 2021, actually, mind shift capital did as well. And it was a founder, female founder that had I had met in 2015. So I knew her for six years, I followed her company, we were, you know, kind of friendly, we would email every once in a while she’d give me updates on what was happening with company. It was a relationship, you know, we built a relationship over time. And by the time she was at the point where she was really ready to take on some significant funding, there were a bunch of angels that she had been really, really good about communicating with and letting us know, the milestones that she was hitting and how how things were happening for the company. And so I think a lot of it has to do with the team and I, I try to coach entrepreneurs to to really start to build the relationships with potential investors, or even potential acquirers, which sounds crazy. If you just have like a back of the napkin idea, why would you go talk to a potential acquirer already, it’s too early, but it’s never too early. It’s never too early to start to build relationships with people and let them know what you’re doing. Let them know what you’re thinking about and how this could actually become a really significant business because people will start to guide you along the way. So that and that could save you a lot of time and a lot of heartache.

Jeremy Weisz 13:27

What was what did you see the difference from 2015? What were some of the milestones that you were looking for that as investor, it becomes more and more interesting.

Marcia Dawood 13:36

Okay, so the company is called Forte. And she, Lauren started the company thinking while she was really into fitness, lived in New York, very close to the peloton studio. And she thought, well, wouldn’t it be really cool if I could go and make a platform where I could have my, you know, my strength training class, my yoga class, my Pilates class, and I can do them, you know, whenever I wanted to, and I would just basically, you know, she, she thought, well, I’ll just go and I’ll just pick one yoga studio one place, and then that’ll be it, you know, and I’ll have this like, variety of stuff. And that was a cool concept. And it was starting to get some traction. But imagine what happened when 2020 hit. And there were a lot of companies that were like, whoa, whoa, here, we want to put you people want to work out at home after work at home now, like, wait, they can still come to the gym? No, no, can’t come to the gym anymore. So what did people do? I mean, they these are big, big companies, the YMCA Orangetheory I mean, all of these places, were thinking to themselves, well, what are we what are we going to do? And that’s where forte was able to say, wait a minute, I already built something. I can White, label it and let whoever wants to use it. And that’s when the story became way more interesting.

Jeremy Weisz 14:56

That’s amazing. I’ve also heard you talk about so you look at the team But I’ve also heard you talk about the size of the market.

Marcia Dawood 15:04

Yes. Oh my gosh, yes. So I, I tell this to people a lot, like, don’t have a solution in search of a problem. Like, it has to be something that is so sticky that you would just it’s such a pain to keep doing what you’re doing that the solution is gonna be like, Yes, I need this, like, I can’t live without this, right? Because otherwise, it’s just like, well, it’s just like, maybe, I guess, I guess I could still keep doing what I’m doing. It’s not that bad. You know, you don’t want that kind of reaction. If you’re trying to get people to change their behavior and actually use whatever it is that you’re developing.

Jeremy Weisz 15:42

What were some of the companies that you listen to? Like, what? Yes, you solve a huge pain point. Obviously, we talked about cognition, therapeutics, I mean, if you have a loved one suffering with any of those things, it doesn’t matter the amount of money they cost, like you will do whatever, to keep them healthy with one of these things. What’s another company or two, that you immediately saw that they’re going after a huge pain point here?

Marcia Dawood 16:09

Oh, gosh, there’s a bunch. I mean, there’s anything I am not a scientist. But yet, I have this like, huge soft spot for anybody who’s trying to solve some type of a medical problem, even if it’s something that I don’t have a connection to. So like, there was a company that had a stent that could be put into somebody’s heart. And it was what the way that the CEO explained that she just did such an amazing job of saying, Look, I know you are investors are are not scientists, some some might be but most for the most part not. And she was explaining, like, what happens in the operating room right now. And then what happens in the operating room once they start using her product. And I was just blown away at how still, even though technology has come so far, and medicine has come so far, we’re still using things in the hospitals that are really not great. And how, and you’re, you’re sitting there and you’re you’re feeling the frustration of the doctors, and even if the people who have invented this new thing, whatever new thing is, and then, and you’re thinking, wow, why can’t we get that in there? Because that just seems like such a no brainer. But you know, it isn’t always that he has a lot of red tape, a lot of red tape, and there’s takes a lot of money. And it takes a lot of time. Archaic

Jeremy Weisz 17:32

practices and archaic industries. That makes sense. Another thing that you talk a lot about, Marcia is the importance of asking customers. So I’d love for you to compare a company. I know you’ve dealt a lot of companies that maybe they never really asked they were just in their basement doing things. And then once they actually got feedback,

Marcia Dawood 17:54

yes, good, good. Good. Point. So Zive, which is the company where I sit on the board, they have a product called Kiwi for Gmail, and it’s a it’s a way to take your, your Gmail and pull it off of the browser so that it’s a standalone application, but on your desktop still. And I use this thing every day, if somebody tried to take it away from me, I’d be very sad. But what they did is they just made it and they went out and started to give it to these like super users. And they were like, just try to break it try to do whatever you can do to break it and, and tell us what’s wrong. And then they just kept iterating so that it would get stronger and stronger and stronger. And they could do so much more with it. Then the one of the very first companies that I invested in, which was a company doing statistics for, for kids in sports in like high school. They didn’t really go out and ask that many people that many questions. And then the the CEO just he needed a new job. So he kind of took off. So that wasn’t so great, either. But so there’s like a big difference. Like I think people need to embrace what your customers are saying because they are your customers. They just saying well, I’m going to make this and it’s going to be great because you know, that’s what I think I would want to use. But the use cases are so incredibly different, especially when you’re talking about like enterprise software or anything like that.

Jeremy Weisz 19:27

Marcia, where can people check out xlive? What’s the what’s the website?

Marcia Dawood 19:31

They can just go to either or Kiwi for

Jeremy Weisz 19:35

Kiwi for Gmail or as I’ve met Zive, the outcome? What are other software and apps you can’t live without? Because I have those two, you know, you mentioned I would want to fly there if they shut my zipper down or something happened and that would I would not be happy. What are some of the other software and tools you’d like to use?

Marcia Dawood 19:56

Okay, so I have gotten interested and I’m done. I’m getting relatively dangerous at video editing, and audio editing mainly for my podcast. And so I use this tool called Avari. And I first got it because it was like a free trial or whatever. But now I’ve learned how to use it. And it was so intuitive. And it was so easy that I actually was doing something the other day. And I thought, Well, it’d be kind of fun if I could make my voice sound different. So I put all these filters on my voice and it and then I was like, wow, this really does sound different. So so that that’s like a more of a desktop app that I think is like really fun.

Jeremy Weisz 20:38

Any other productivity things with email or text, or just communicating with team members that you’d like to use?

Marcia Dawood 20:47

Well, I’m a huge slack fan, I probably have, like, so many different people that I’m there are different groups that I’m slacking with. And then sometimes I’ll get I’ll try to get people like if we’re trying to do a project or whether I’m like, well, let’s set up a Slack, you know, for for ourselves and begin to use them and then inevitably, I can get like half or maybe three quarters of the people who use it, and then the other people don’t use it, and then then you’re just back to email. So sometimes I wish people would just, you know, kind of gravitate over. I mean, there are so many things now that you can use, I’m all kinds of different things. So it just, it just kind of depends on what works out. But I think slack is great, because it just keeps all the conversations kind of separated, as opposed to email where you’re just kind of having to rely a little bit on your memory, because you’re gonna have to search and find out Wait a minute that I talked to that person, and what was that about again? And yeah,

Jeremy Weisz 21:40

we were talking before we hit record, some mistakes people make when reaching out to angel investors or investors. What are some of the do not do?

Marcia Dawood 21:54

Please, please do not send me a message on LinkedIn that says, I need $50,000. Because inevitably, I’m not an ATM. Yeah, sometimes people think, Oh, you’re an investor. So you, you know, you’re gonna be able to write me a check. That’s what you do? Well, no, you know, and it gets to a point to where all investors are like this, I don’t care how much money you have or don’t have, you know, it all comes down to Angel Investing is very risky asset class. So the collective, they tell us that we should not have more than five, maybe 10% of our net worth, in this asset class. Now, I think I’m a little past that, but, um, you know, really, you have to be careful to, and we also are looking for some returns to happen, and that takes time. So, so you’ve, you’re kind of you’ve got two things kind of against you. But again, it goes back to don’t be thinking so much about money, it really has to do more with the relationship. And I feel like, in so many cases, if people went out and just started asking for opinions or advice, they will get money. Because if their idea is a good one, because what they’re trying what you’re trying to do as an entrepreneur, you’re trying to say, Okay, here’s, here’s what I’m thinking, Am I right, like is it do you think this is where it has some legs, maybe there’s somebody else that might know a little bit more about it. Because at the end of the day, angel investors have, you know, a couple of different expertise, but they’re not an expert in everything. Like, I don’t have a science background, and I’m not really that great at, you know, really advanced tech stuff, or any things so, so I would go and rely on you know, somebody who was or somebody who knew a lot about a certain type of science. So, you know, angels we we play together, you know, we we try to make sure that we really rely on each other. That’s why you hear so much about angel groups. And angel groups will pool their expertise, they’ll pool all of that great knowledge and be able to say, Okay, now I can really evaluate a company because I know that this person is about this, this person can look at the financials, this person will look at attack, this person is going to be able to look at the team. And together we can put together a pretty decent diligence memo to say that we’ve checked, you know, all the boxes, you can always find reasons to not invest in a company, always. I mean, they’re early stage, they, there’s tons of risks, you can always say, You know what, no, I don’t like this or I don’t like that. And that might not even be the real reason why they didn’t invest. But at some point, you’ve got to say yes, if you really want to help support the entrepreneur.

Jeremy Weisz 24:41

Yeah. You know, like you’re saying, there are so many more amazing intangibles there besides money. There’s advice, right? And because you have a breadth of experience over many companies in many industries and also connections in network, right, you could actually just shortcut someone’s having an issue, an introduction, that maybe the person would not even know how to contact that person or company. And they really shortcuts a lot of energy, time and money I imagined to, yes, a company out of Singapore. Yes.

Marcia Dawood 25:19

Shiok meats, really interesting company, they make cell based meats, and they are revolutionizing the way that we eat meat. And I think, you know, you’ve heard we’ve heard so much more in the last even three to five years, but even in the last 10 to 20 years about veganism about the planet and how much water and land it takes in order to produce beef and chickens and, and a lot of our food supply. And you know what if we switched to doing other things, we ate more of a plant based meal, we had things like Shiok meats who could make cell based meats. So a lot, I just think it’s fascinating to see the different things that are out in the market. And then you know, which kind of rise to the top and how we can really make a better people better planet all those better things.

Jeremy Weisz 26:19

Where did they come to in their journey? And what did you see?

Marcia Dawood 26:23

So they came relatively early. And Heather, my my partner at mineshaft capital had their hand Yeah. And she lived in the Middle East for about almost 15 years. And so she kind of had this global view that I just found so fascinating. I love the fact that mind shift can can really span over such a huge geography of really the entire world, and be able to find some of these truly amazing companies that are working on things in parts of the world that maybe that wouldn’t come to the US for a while. But yet, we can kind of get that at first glance. And

Jeremy Weisz 27:01

what’s a lesson you learn from Heather?

Marcia Dawood 27:06

Oh my gosh, so many things. She’s like, amazing. So she is a true Trailblazer. She started the first women’s angel group in Dubai called women’s angel investor network wane and she just she is unstoppable. There is nothing that let that she lets get in the way. And she’s just helped so many entrepreneurs and you know, helped with some companies at very early stages get over some really significant, significant things. So I mean, she’s, she’s amazing.

Jeremy Weisz 27:40

Um, you know, on the health, right, we talked about the, you know, the cell based plant based meat, and also cognition, therapeutics, I want to hear about what you found, you know, I also geek out on health related things, Marcia, and you’ve done a lot of research on the, you know, the ALS, Alzheimer’s Parkinson’s, what have you found that that you do to just help prevent, you know, doing anything we can do in our control some of these things as much as possible.

Marcia Dawood 28:16

Well, I could probably sit here for like three hours and less than but um, I would say number one, on my list of priorities is water. And I have for the last 20 years lived in a place where the first call I make before the internet, even getting turned on is to get a whole house water filtration system. And to me that is super important. Because yes, it does matter what kind of water we drank, and I could go on and on about about that. But it really does matter. Because skin is our biggest organ. It really matters what we bathe in how, you know, really everything. And it was amazing. Even the house that I most recently moved into during COVID. I eat I walked in the first day that we owned it and I turned on the faucet and I could even smell the difference in the water from what I was used to at my other house where I had a system. And that afternoon is when the I had the plumber all ready to go with the new system. And it was an extreme difference. And every I also learned over the years learned moving around and having to do this in a couple different places is that each region is different. So one system won’t necessarily work in the same region as another so but I think water is definitely a big one. I’m also a big fan even though it looks like a lot of pills. I am a big fan of supplements that are singular and not multi. Because I think sometimes a multivitamin can actually give you too much of what you don’t need and Um, I could go into all kinds of things like there’s a specific genetic variant that I have called MTHFR, which is something that means I can’t process B vitamins the same way that other people do. So I have to take a specific type of B vitamin, but if it’s pretty common, I mean, empty

Jeremy Weisz 30:19

vessel. Is it like a metal? Cobalt?

Marcia Dawood 30:22

Yeah, exactly. And so and that’s

Jeremy Weisz 30:25

the better. I mean, even if you can process probably better absorbed anyways, and methyl cobalamin form, not to get geeky on people, but like, you can look at the back of the label and see, and I think, I don’t know if this is the case, but it’s cheaper to make a cyano Cabal, and this was unethical. Well, maybe that’s why they make it I haven’t looked into the economics of it. But there you can easily see, is it methyl? cobalamin? On the back of your B vitamin, or not?

Marcia Dawood 30:53

Right. Yeah. I mean, there’s a there’s a lot of different things. I think, nowadays, we’re learning so much more about personalized medicine. So I’m a big proponent of you have to be an advocate for your own health. And if something isn’t feeling right, or, or you feel low energy, or you’re not sleeping, well, there’s probably something that you’re eating, or maybe that you could do, I’m not a doctor clearly. But I think it’s always great to go and find a health professional who can really take a look at each person’s individual circumstances and, and actually treat the whole person not just a symptom,

Jeremy Weisz 31:33

ya know, much I love this conversation, because, you know, we are talking about preventing scary diseases as much as possible. But but the reality is with founders and, and entrepreneurs, they are burning the midnight oil, and they’re probably I could speak for myself, time periods and not paid attention to my health, which is, you know, lowers performance, right? If we thought of ourselves as high performing athletes, which, you know, entrepreneurs are, maybe we’d make different choices. So I love to hear, you know, go a little deeper on the type of supplements that you do take. So, you know, we talked about water first. You know, everyone’s heard Oh, yeah, I should be drinking more water. Was there something research wise that you heard that kind of scared you enough to be like, I need to, you know, install this whole filtration system, I need to make sure I’m drinking X amount of ounces of water a day, what did you read and see that, you know, caused you to to? It was a it was a, you know, not a deal breaker, you needed it in the house.

Marcia Dawood 32:39

I guess it wasn’t one particular thing, it was more that I just knew that the more I was consistent with drinking water, or being around water that was clean and well filtered, the better I felt. And I just kind of got that in my brain early on, and decided that this was going to be a priority for me,

Jeremy Weisz 33:02

because I have heard there is research and I don’t know, probably someone could look it up that if you have Parkinson’s like water, there are the physicians advise, like drinking X amount of water a day that that helps. And I don’t know the research behind it, but I’m sure it’s out there. So. So from a supplement perspective, what do you like to take. So

Marcia Dawood 33:24

I’m all about the B vitamins, the D vitamins actually healthy to sleep, a lot of people, if they do get their blood tech taken, sometimes they the the ratios that you see of what’s normal on blood, sometimes can actually be too low or too high. So it’s great to talk to a functional medicine doctor or somebody who’s really knowledgeable with these things. Because what I realized is that, by me having a vitamin D level that was a little bit too low, even though it was still showing in that normal range. For me personally, by me taking, you know, a little bit of a supplement a couple times a week, all of a sudden my sleep starts to, you know, be a little better because as we get older, our sleep gets a little more compromised. Sometimes when I was younger, I was a rock star sleeper. But now you know, I’ve got to work on it a little bit harder. But you know, probiotics, I’m a huge fan of this one particular probiotic, that actually the woman who created it, her husband has Parkinson’s disease and that’s how I met her because at the time my mom was sick and and we bonded over that. And she went on to create this amazing probiotic for companies called biotic quest. And sugar shift is the probiotic and I’m a huge fan of it i There’s no there are a lot of things that she cannot claim about it because it’s you know, you can’t do that in the supplement world. You could say support fantastic

Jeremy Weisz 34:52

supports but you can claim it

Marcia Dawood 34:54

helps Yes, but we can’t claim it begun supported

Jeremy Weisz 34:56

by our request you so biotic quest Yeah. And then what were you saying about sugar shift?

Marcia Dawood 35:02

That’s the name of the actual, a couple different versions of the probiotic that she has. She has one for immunity, one for sugar. The sugar one is the main one. And the reason why she called it sugar shift is really because she was trying to get a couple of I might not tell the story, right. So sorry, Martha. But she was trying to get a bunch of Parkinson’s patients to take it and see, you know, what the results were in the process. She had a lot of, you know, non Parkinson’s, people taking it as well. Well, some people had diabetes, and it ended up helping their diabetes. And they they really weren’t at first rely equating that it was because of the probiotic, but it turned out that that was helping, also,

Jeremy Weisz 35:45

that’s one of the reasons I drink kombucha every single day for the probiotics and I’m lactose intolerant. So I can you know, yogurt or anything, but yeah, it’s help. So B vitamins, D, probiotics, anything else? Um, well,

Marcia Dawood 36:02

without getting into like a ton of detail. Let’s see. Yeah, I would just say those are the main ones quesiton. I also take that’s kind of good overall. And then therapy min, which is mainly for like inflammation and helps with joints and things like

Jeremy Weisz 36:17

that. You should be like the Angel Capital Association, vitamin list.

Marcia Dawood 36:23

Yes, we can do that you

Jeremy Weisz 36:24

want to stay the energized, run your company properly, you got to follow the Marcia vitamin list. There you go. You know, and when we talk about my shift capital, it really you know, focuses on the women, people of color. And, you know, we’re talking about investing in change, right, and you can make a difference. You know, whatever you spend your money on. And so I know one of your friends wrote a book, activate your money, you know, I’d love for you to just what does that mean? So

Marcia Dawood 36:55

on the next wave Investment Committee, one of my friends, Janine Firpo wrote an amazing book called activate your money. And actually, she now has a group that called invest for better, which allows anybody women mainly do it. But of course, men are welcome to where it’s a course that you can go through and you can learn it’s you take like one hour, a week or a month, or however it’s set up. And you can learn about these different things. So take, for example, where you shop, where you shop actually matters. And you could do something like buy that just a regular store, like you always would. Or, for example, I just spoke to somebody recently who said they really wanted a new pair of sneakers, but they wanted to make sure that the sneakers were made at a place where the labor was fair to all. And so they went and found a very specific sneaker company to buy from where you bank matters. And Janine goes on in the book to talk about selfhelp Credit Union, which is a place where if you do your banking, they’re checking savings, you’re putting deposits into the bank, they can then loan to certain people that maybe couldn’t qualify at a normal bank. So where are you bank matters, where you put your money in your retirement, should it be in a mutual fund or, or even in a stock, there are all kinds of tools that you can use in order to see if you really like to use one particular if you’d really like to have your money invested in one particular area or not based on your value. So if you say, Well, you know what, I really don’t want to invest in a company that has anything to do with fossil fuel, or guns, or alcohol. Well, then what you can do is you can go through and screen out the companies that are involved in those things and make sure that your money is invested in something different. And there’s a website called As You Sow that allows you to look up all kinds of fascinating website.

Jeremy Weisz 39:00

That’s really cool. Yeah. And they were heard of it. As you As you so very cool. Thanks for sharing that and then Activate Your Money. That book is out already. Yes, it’s

Marcia Dawood 39:11

already out. You can get on Amazon or any of the places that you get books

Jeremy Weisz 39:17

from our show, the people to check it out also in the desert angels was a really cool story.

Marcia Dawood 39:27

Yeah, so the desert angels. They’re a member group of the angel capital Association. Basically, we are the professional society. So all of the different angel groups, and individual angels can join. And we’re like a big network to provide education, public policy, all kinds of things. And so individual

Jeremy Weisz 39:45

angel or you have a group, let’s say you’re an angel group in Chicago, you can join as a group and members can join individually and get connection, education and other resources. That’s exactly

Marcia Dawood 39:58

right. And we also do public policy work. Make sure that legislators know that sometimes the big guys like private equity and whatever, they get a lot of attention. So sometimes the laws are being made, we have to be like, wait a minute, I see little angels here, you know, we’ve got different different needs. And we help the entrepreneurs when they’re really, really early. And so please don’t, don’t do anything to mess that up. So we do do a lot of work with with public policy. But the desert angels are in Tucson, Arizona, and they did a study, and they looked at over a 10 year period, all of the investments that they made, and they found that for every $100,000, and over this period of time, I think it was around $35 million, that they invested over the over the 10 year period. But for every $100,000, they created for 5.4 direct jobs, and which equaled about $400,000.04 $150,000 in wages. But the biggest thing that that meant to me is what they said about economic output, it actually created $2.1 million of economic output for every $100,000. So think about that, if you had, you know, all of this money, the 35 million that they had invested, and every $100,000 is creating over $2 million of economic output for their area. And in most cases, the desert angels, the group at any given time was probably no more than 40 or 50 people. So think about this, you know, in a lot of cases, we think, Oh, well, I’m only one person, you know, how am I going to make that big of a difference? And I’m totally guilty of thinking that sometimes, too. But then you look at something like this, and you’re thinking, wow, you know, here’s this group of people there. It’s really a pretty small group of people to be making such a significant impact in their local community.

Jeremy Weisz 41:55

Yeah, thanks for sharing that. And you have, there’s a conference every year.

Marcia Dawood 41:59

There is there’s a conference every year, and there’s one coming up, everybody should come. It’s May 17, through the 19th. And it’ll be in Atlantic City. Is it always in May? It’s usually in either end of April, or sometime in May.

Jeremy Weisz 42:13

So who are some of the speakers either current or past? That have been interesting.

Marcia Dawood 42:20

So in the past, we’ve had Carla Harris, who is just an amazing speaker, for Morgan Stanley. And this year, we have Kelly Latimer, who is an astronaut she speak.

Jeremy Weisz 42:33

That’s fantastic. You know, what I want to talk about a little bit is, you know, when we talk about the, you know, the book that you refer to, are there certain companies that you have found that you like to frequent or when you’ve looked at, as we so

Marcia Dawood 42:55

Oh, okay, so, um, right, so if I’m looking at as you so I kind of go through and look at things that are more in the public public space. Um, so, you know, there’s, you know, all kinds of different things that you can look for, and different ways that you can kind of sort and make that happen. I would say that, for the most part, though, what I’m really looking for are things in the private markets. And if you look through my portfolio, and how, you know, I know my bio, it says, I have over 200 companies, you know, that I have investments in, in a lot of cases, that’s through funds. And I am a huge fan of funds for a lot of reasons. Mainly because, you know, this is a game that, I hope, at some point everybody will get in on, because it really is the way that we can make change. But in a lot of cases, it’s really hard to have a diversified portfolio and minimize the risk, if you can’t make a lot of investments and making a lot of investments means you have to have a lot of money. Okay, so there’s no way I could have made 200 investments in two companies. There’s just no humanly possible way. So how did I do that? I went and found funds that were being managed either, you know, in some cases, I helped manage them. But in other cases, I was just a passive person, but was able to find the ones that I thought their thesis was interesting, like mind shift is a good example because we invest in women like companies, and then by putting in a little bit of money, you can get exposure to some, in some cases, 10 15 even 25 companies. And so that’s how you really de risk and kind of build up your portfolio.

Jeremy Weisz 44:50

Marcia, I just want to be the first one to thank you. This has been fantastic and I love that you shared not just the business but also the health side of things as well. I want to point people online to check out the website. If there’s any other places we can point people to. But definitely As I mentioned and spells it earlier, we’ll link it up in the in the show notes, and also Are there any other places online we should send people to?

Marcia Dawood 45:22

Well, we can also link Biotic Quests website if people are interested in the probiotic. And if they are interested in Kiwi for Gmail, they can

Jeremy Weisz 45:32

look there. Thanks, Marcia. Thanks, everyone.

Marcia Dawood 45:36

Thank you for having me.