For the first time since the organization’s birth eight years ago, Philly Startup Leaders now has a dedicated, full-time staffer: Yuval Yarden, the young, energetic community organizer who co-led the city’s recent South by Southwest initiative.
“Our community is growing rapidly, and we believe with Yuval’s full time support, we’ll have the opportunity to make a larger impact,” PSL President Brock Weatherup said in a statement.
Yarden said her job is to be “the first stop for everything entrepreneurship in Philly.”
It’s a move that represents how the local tech scene is evolving: what started as a group of entrepreneurs looking to build community around the city’s growing tech sector has now turned into a fully-fledged outfit complete with a board and a paid staff member.
With a full-time staffer, “you can just move faster,” said former PSL president Rick Nucci, who led fundraising efforts during his tenure to make the move possible.
Yarden emerged as the obvious choice. She’s done stints at Jones Lang LaSalle, DreamIt and Zoomer since graduating from Temple, all the while taking a volunteer leadership role at PSL.
“She has fantastic community DNA,” Nucci said.
At last year’s Founder Factory, Nucci told us Yarden was the reason the event was so well-produced.
PSL is backed by Josh Kopelman’s Kopelman Foundation, Comcast, Morgan Lewis, Ben Franklin Technology Partners and Benjamin’s Desk. Yarden’s position is funded for two years but PSL plans to figure out how to make the position sustainable longer-term, Nucci said.-30-