Hooks Johnston, DC-area venture capitalist and executive, dies at 55 - Technical.ly DC


Sep. 6, 2017 10:22 am

Hooks Johnston, DC-area venture capitalist and executive, dies at 55

Johnston, who cofounded Valhalla Partners and most recently worked with Inova Center for Personalized Health, is being remembered for his influence in the D.C. tech community and kindness.

Hooks Johnston.

(Photo courtesy of Inova)

Hooks Johnston, a venture capitalist, tech executive and philanthropist in the D.C. area, passed away Monday, Sept. 3, the Washington Business Journal reported. He was 55.

“He kept me grounded and he was the kindest, most giving person,” his wife Betsy Johnston told the Washington Business Journal. “He battled health issues for almost 30 years and Hooks never complained. Not even to me.”

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After serving as CEO of supply chain software company Roadshow International, Johnston was a cofounder of Vienna, Va.–based venture capital firm Valhalla Partners, and a managing director of FBR Technology Venture Partners. Last year, he joined the Inova Center for Personalized Health, overseeing investment and its accelerator program as a managing director. He spoke about the initiative at Startup Grind DC in July.


Johnston was also key to the creation of the Global Good Fund, which provides investment and support to social entrepreneurs.

“Hooks was not only a founding board member of The Global Good Fund, but an incredible inspiration to young people across the world who are using entrepreneurship for good,” the organization posted on Facebook. “His legacy lives on in the work we collectively do to create a better world.”

The post described him as “one of the all time great guys,” and “a family man and a person of deep faith.”

“Hooks’ exceptional leadership at NVTC and in the broader technology community will be profoundly missed. Most importantly, we will miss Hooks’ kindness and friendship,” Northern Virginia Technology Council CEO Bobbie Kilberg said in a statement. Johnston served on the board of that organization for eight years. “We send our deep condolences to his wife Betsy and their children. Our thoughts and prayers are with them.”

Stephen Babcock

Stephen Babcock is Market Editor for Technical.ly Baltimore and Technical.ly DC. A graduate of Northeastern University, he moved to Baltimore following stints in New Orleans and Rio Arriba County, New Mexico. His work has appeared in The New York Times, Baltimore Fishbowl, NOLA Defender, NOLA.com/The Times-Picayune and the Rio Grande Sun.


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