Lou Volpe, MBA’78
Lou Volpe (MBA ’78) has contributed a great deal to the School of Management over the past 10 years, donating his time, talent, and funds in support of entrepreneurship education at the School. After actively engaging at the executive level with three successful technology startups in the Boston area—ArrowPoint Communications, GeoTel Communications, and Parametric Technology—he wanted to give back by helping other entrepreneurs get started.
Volpe shared his story and advice for graduates as the keynote speaker for the GSM commencement this year.
A judge for the Institute of Technology Entrepreneurship & Commercialization’s (ITEC’s) annual $50K New Venture Competition since 2000, Volpe is an important part of the ITEC mission. He also contributes regularly to the Office of Technology & Development’s Ignition Awards, guiding Boston University faculty members toward commercialization of their products, and gives special lectures and guest appearances at the School as a mentor to those interested in following the entrepreneurship path. “It’s important for me to share the advantage of my experience with others to help both the School and the entrepreneurial community to prosper,” he says. “Boston University does a great job at that too, so they make it easy.”
Volpe moved from the entrepreneurial side to the venture capital world in 2000, when he became a managing partner at Kodiak Venture Partners. As an investor looking at new technology ideas every day, Volpe says the most important factors for him in choosing what to fund are the entrepreneurs themselves: their passion, their knowledge, and their understanding of the market.
In 2008, Volpe received the Harry Morgan Award for his generous contributions to the School’s ITEC program, and in 2009, he received the SMG Distinguished Alumni Award. “I love the thrill of entrepreneurship,” he says, “and feeling like every morning you can wake up and make an impact on the company you are running.” We are grateful for the impact Volpe has made on Boston University through his continuous support of entrepreneurship.
Volpe’s most recent contribution was serving as the MBA Commencement speaker on May 20.
By Alissa Mallinson, May 2011