Monique Woodard

Monique Woodard

Founding Partner and Head Baker @cakeventures | Investing in Demographic Change

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4 Book Recommendations by Monique Woodard

  • Black Founders at Work

    HBCUvc (Social Good Fund)

    Black Founders at Work: Journeys to Innovation is a collection of firsthand insights and lived experiences of entrepreneurs and investors building high-growth technology companies. It recounts the stores of modern tech innovation directly from the Black founders and investors driving it. From military veterans to non-technical founders to chance encounters and multi-million dollar exists, Black Founders at Work: Journeys to Innovation captures the varied paths of Black excellence and innovation to, through and beyond Silicon Valley. By telling our own stories, we expand and inspire the next generation of invention.

    Shout out to @hadiyahdotme and the @HBCUvc team on releasing their first book. “Black Founders at Work” is all about the stories of people like @mwseibel @8ennett @delane @ABenton other Black founders and VCs (I’m in there too) Go buy the book! https://t.co/tDmmJuNsdd https://t.co/pxqE6gBkjf

  • The Tycoons

    Charles R. Morris

    "Makes a reader feel like a time traveler plopped down among men who were by turns vicious and visionary."--The Christian Science Monitor The modern American economy was the creation of four men: Andrew Carnegie, John D. Rockefeller, Jay Gould, and J. P. Morgan. They were the giants of the Gilded Age, a moment of riotous growth that established America as the richest, most inventive, and most productive country on the planet. Acclaimed author Charles R. Morris vividly brings the men and their times to life. The ruthlessly competitive Carnegie, the imperial Rockefeller, and the provocateur Gould were obsessed with progress, experiment, and speed. They were balanced by Morgan, the gentleman businessman, who fought, instead, for a global trust in American business. Through their antagonism and their verve, they built an industrial behemoth--and a country of middle-class consumers. The Tycoons tells the incredible story of how these four determined men wrenched the economy into the modern age, inventing a nation of full economic participation that could not have been imagined only a few decades earlier.

    @jrichlive I’m currently reading The Tycoons (on Andrew Carnegie, John D. Rockefeller, Jay Gould, and JP Morgan). I highly recommend if you like both finance/business and history. As a bonus, I really loved “Men Who Built America” on the History Channel. https://t.co/pYWN5EC8Dp

  • It's About Damn Time

    Arlan Hamilton

    "A hero's tale of what's possible when we unlock our potential, continue the search for knowledge, and draw on our lived experiences to guide us through the darkest moments."--Stacey Abrams From a black, gay woman who broke into the boys' club of Silicon Valley comes an empowering guide to finding your voice, working your way into any room you want to be in, and achieving your own dreams. In 2015, Arlan Hamilton was on food stamps and sleeping on the floor of the San Francisco airport, with nothing but an old laptop and a dream of breaking into the venture capital business. She couldn't understand why people starting companies all looked the same (white and male), and she wanted the chance to invest in the ideas and people who didn't conform to this image of how a founder is supposed to look. Hamilton had no contacts or network in Silicon Valley, no background in finance--not even a college degree. What she did have was fierce determination and the will to succeed. As much as we wish it weren't so, we still live in a world where being underrepresented often means being underestimated. But as someone who makes her living investing in high-potential founders who also happen to be female, LGBTQ, or people of color, Hamilton understands that being undervalued simply means that a big upside exists. Because even if you have to work twice as hard to get to the starting line, she says, once you are on a level playing field, you will sprint ahead. Despite what society would have you believe, Hamilton argues, a privileged background, an influential network, and a fancy college degree are not prerequisites for success. Here she shares the hard-won wisdom she's picked up on her remarkable journey from food-stamp recipient to venture capitalist, with lessons like "The Best Music Comes from the Worst Breakups," "Let Someone Shorter Stand in Front of You," "The Dangers of Hustle Porn," and "Don't Let Anyone Drink Your Diet Coke." Along the way, she inspires us all to defy other people's expectations and to become the role models we've been looking for.

    Arlan’s book is here! If you haven’t already bought ‘It’s About Damn Time’, make sure you go get it today. 💜💜💜 https://t.co/MIatB50hQV

  • If you're going to read one book about Hollywood, this is the one. As co-founder of Creative Artists Agency (CAA), Michael Ovitz earned a reputation for ruthless negotiation, brilliant strategy and fierce loyalty to his clients. He reinvented the role of the agent and helped shape the careers of hundreds of A-list stars and directors, including Steven Spielberg, Martin Scorsese, Meryl Streep, Sean Connery, Steven Seagal, Bill Murray, Robin Williams and David Letterman. But this personal history is much more than celebrity friendships and bare-knuckled deal-making. It's an underdog's story- How did a kid with no connections work his way into the William Morris mailroom, and become the most powerful person in Hollywood? How did a superagent also become a power in producing, advertising, mergers & acquisitions and modern art? And what were the personal consequences of all those deals? After decades of near-silence in the face of intense controversy, Michael Ovitz is finally telling his whole story in this blistering, unforgettable memoir.

    @RuncieDan It’s one of my favorite books in the last few years. A lot of his philosophy around the agent-actor relationships can be applied to VC-founder relationships