Venture capitalist David Lee was diagnosed with Hodgkin's lymphoma 24 years ago when he was a graduate Student at Stanford. Rhett Krawitt's acute lymphoblastic leukemia was discovered eight years ago when he was just a toddler.
Both are now cancer-free. Lee has a thriving investment career in Los Angeles and Krawitt is a Bay Area fourth-grader who plays tennis and piano and excels at sailing.
They're almost four decades apart by age but are uniquely linked because of the diseases they've overcome. Now, they're joining forces to spearhead a novel fundraising effort that convinces prominent start-up investors to donate their most precious asset: time.
Starting last week, Lee and about three dozen other venture capitalists from 23 firms in California began auctioning lunch, dinner or coffee meetings, offering winning bidders a chance to pitch an idea, get business advice or just make a valuable connection. All of the proceeds from the 2018 VC Master Lunch Auction Series, hosted on the website Charitybuzz.com, go to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, the world's biggest nonprofit focused on eliminating blood cancer.