Skip to main content

Venture capitalist David Sze named to Board


The university’s newest Board member, elected at the June 6 meeting, is David Sze, a partner in the Menlo Park, California offices of venture capital firm Greylock Partners. Mr. Sze, who was introduced to Rockefeller by President Marc Tessier-Lavigne, will serve on the Committee on Scientific Affairs and has a particular interest in faculty recruitment and promotion.

Mr. Sze joined Greylock in 2000 after a 10-year career in product management and development at consumer internet and media companies, including Excite, one of the most recognizable internet brands in the late 1990s, Electronic Arts, a video game publisher, and HBO. He started his career in management consulting with Marakon Associates and The Boston Consulting Group. He has a B.A. from Yale University and an M.B.A. from Stanford University.

At Greylock, Mr. Sze focuses on consumer internet, social networking, media convergence and mobile technology. His portfolio has included Facebook, LinkedIn and Pandora as well as Digg, Nextdoor, Oodle, SEVEN, VUDU and WhoSay. He was ranked number four on the 2012 Forbes “Midas List” of top tech investors.

Mr. Sze first got to know Dr. Tessier-Lavigne when they both lived in the Bay Area. He says he developed a great deal of respect for Dr. Tessier-Lavigne’s work at Genentech, and was particularly struck when he learned that leading Rockefeller University was the only job Dr. Tessier-Lavigne could imagine leaving Genentech for.

“As I have come to learn about Rockefeller, I have been impressed by how the university’s approach to bioscience is similar to our approach to technology at Greylock. In both cases, the key is to identify excellent people with creative ideas, and to give them resources and time to develop their discoveries,” Mr. Sze says. “It’s a very human philosophy, and it puts the focus on investing in people and having enough humility to realize you won’t always know where the next great discoveries are going to come from.”

“The bottom line is that its results are unparalleled, and it has an enviable history and strong institutional values. I’m honored to be involved with Rockefeller.”

“David is an outstanding addition to the Board not least because he has a unique perspective on innovation from his work in Silicon Valley,” says Dr. Tessier-Lavigne. “He also has deep expertise in the commercialization of technology, and he will bring new ideas and help make new connections for Rockefeller.”

With Mr. Sze’s election, the Board currently numbers 42.