DC daily roundup: Seed planted for AI governance; meet DC Tech Studio’s first cohort; Fearless Fund suspension concerns

Plus lessons on Apple Intelligence from Shenandoah National Park.


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AI governance startup raises $3.5M

FairNow, founded last year, is aiming to help companies with AI processes. This means tracking AI laws and regulations, addressing biases, automating evaluations and working to assess risks.

The startup is celebrating the recent seed round, which went better than expected and surpassed the company’s goal, CEO and founder Guru Sethupathy told me.

“That just shows the potential here,” he said, “and the promise of what we’re building.”

➡️ Read more about the raise in my latest report here.

Into the woods for Apple’s WWDC24

Jason Michael Perry, a fractional chief AI officer based in Baltimore, recently ventured to Shenandoah National Park to be in nature. But he didn’t fully unplug: He brought his T-Mobile-equipped iPad to attend Apple’s World Wide Developers Conference, which highlighted developments with the Vision Pro, Apple Intelligence and more.

In this post, Perry shared his thoughts on the many different models, partnerships and, of course, AI.

“AI is not the platform; it’s a killer feature in the platform, and the more platforms integrate it and couple it with the platforms we use, the more invisible it will be,” he wrote.

➡️ Check out more of his takeaways here.

News Incubator: What else to know today

• The information of millions of people who used Baltimore’s 311 services, including names, phone numbers and email addresses, was found on an unprotected database. []

• About 370 construction workers who worked on the City Ridge development in DC were allegedly denied the proper minimum wage and overtime, according to a lawsuit against the companies from the DC Attorney General. [Washington Post]

• DC Tech Studio, a new innovation hub out of the DC Tech & Venture Coalition, announced its inaugural cohort of 11 founders. It includes Julie Saltman of RealLIST Startup Standd and RealLIST Connector Kay Rodriguez of Outerly. [DC Tech Studio]

• Arlington-based aerospace firm CAES Systems was purchased by Honeywell International from a private equity firm for $1.9 billion in cash. [Washington Biz Journal]

• Civil rights organizations and employment lawyers in the DC-area have raised concern over the suspension of the Fearless Fund’s grant program for Black women business owners. [Washington Informer/]

• The counter-drone technology company D-Fend, headquartered in Israel, is expanding its leadership team in McLean. [D-Fend Solutions]

🗓️ On the Calendar

• Halcyon is hosting a showcase for its first-ever Climate Fellowship cohort on June 26. [Details here]

• The Founder Institute is hosting a networking event for early-stage founders on June 27 in DC. Representatives from organizations including the Small Business Administration and SOAR Community Network will be in attendance. [Details here]

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