WASHINGTON, DC – May 28, 2019 – The Global Entrepreneurship Network announced today that Linda Smith has accepted to join the Board of the Global Business Angels Network and will begin her term starting July 1, 2019.
Smith joins GBAN from her position as Chairman of the Board of the Angel Capital Association (ACA) which represents more than 14,000 accredited investors in the United States, Canada and Mexico. ACA is a founding member of GBAN, an inclusive community of early-stage investor networks seeking to increase angel investor capacity in burgeoning entrepreneurship ecosystems across roughly 50 countries on all six major continents.
“As entrepreneurs continue to flourish in expanding ecosystems and economies around the world, it is critically important that they are supported by local investor networks,” said Jonathan Ortmans, president of the Global Entrepreneurship Network. “Linda brings a wealth of experience that will help benefit entrepreneurs everywhere and anywhere.”
GBAN mentors new national investor networks, provides training and support to improve investor capacity, amplifies the angel “voice” in regulatory issue discussions, advances policies removing barriers to investors and facilitates cross-border investing.
Smith joins the GBAN board alongside Padmaja Ruparel, co-chair of the Indian Angel Network, Baybars Altuntas, co-chair of the European Business Angel Network, and Tomi Davies, co-chair of the African Business Angel Network.
“I am honored to have been asked to join the internationally esteemed Global Business Angel Network Board. Business angels bring more than just capital to the table,” said Smith. “I look forward to serving angel communities around the world and helping them infuse their knowledge and expertise into local entrepreneurship ecosystems – facilitating them to thrive and connect to one global ecosystem.”
Under Smith’s leadership, ACA has spearheaded grassroots efforts to pass critical tax legislation by the U.S. Congress that encourages and expands access to capital for innovative startups. Internationally, she has been at the forefront of efforts to develop formal linkages between ACA and angel networks in Europe, Mexico, New Zealand, Australia and Latin America. Additionally, she has guided efforts to launch new educational and data analytics initiatives serving ACA’s membership.
In addition to her private sector experience, Smith has served three U.S. Presidents, two Congressmen, one mayor and one governor during a forty-year public career.
Smith fills the position on the board that is being vacated by John May, managing partner at New Vantage Group, who recently announced his retirement.
“We owe John a great debt of gratitude for his many contributions over the years,” said Ortmans. “His vision for creating a global community of angel investors has had a profound impact on entrepreneurs and entrepreneurship worldwide.”