Houston Venture Firm, Amplo, Adds Susan Rice As Board Partner

Building companies that matter. It’s part of the Houston venture firm, Amplo’s mission, and it’s attracting some heavyweights to help achieve it.

One of those influential people is Susan Rice, who joined Amplo as a board partner very recently. Rice’s credentials include a United Nations ambassadorship and a role as National Security Advisor under the Obama administration. Rice is also on the board of Netflix and The John F. Kennedy Center for the Arts.

Wall Street Journal article about Rice’s new position at Amplo explained that her responsibilities will include acting as “an adviser to portfolio companies,” evaluating new investments and provide “counsel on strategic issues.”

Meanwhile, Amplo has been building its portfolio and raising funds ($103 million for its first fund and $200 million for the second), investing in companies like Robinhood, a commission-free investment platform, Mark43, a public safety software, among many others.

Its founder Sheel Tyle is also impressive in his own right—you can hear directly from him in a recent episode of HXTV—graduating Stanford at 19, and at 27, running his own socially conscious venture firm in Houston, inspired by travels and growing up as the son of immigrants.

Tyle is also the sole general partner of Amplo, a unique structure, telling the Wall Street Journal that it works in part, due to the hands-on board partners like Susan Rice.

“Founders take our money because these folks are not just involved in name,” Tyle was quoted as saying. “They’re a very engaged group of people.”

Amplo board partners also include Julia Gillard AC, “the first and only woman to have ever served as Australia’s Prime Minister or Deputy Prime Minister,” Alec Ross, Senior Advisor for Innovation to the Secretary of State under President Obama and Nobel Peace Prize winner, Leymah Gbowee. On the brand partner side is Wendy Wolfe Herd, Founder and CEO of Bumble.