Matter Portfolio

Our growing portfolio now comprises 6 classes and 6 seed investments, a total of 49 companies. We choose the companies we invest in through a rigorous screening process that selects the brightest and the best mission-driven teams. These entrepreneurs have done some truly incredible things since completing our accelerator program. Want to follow in their footsteps? Apply now.

Matter Team

Corey Ford
Managing Partner

Corey co-founded Matter in 2012 with the mission of using the startup accelerator model to drive innovation in media. He sees a lot of overlap between his job leading Matter and his early days as a documentary film producer, “at the hub of a creative wheel.” Corey began his career in public broadcasting as a producer on 17 films for the PBS/WGBH series FRONTLINE, winning an Emmy and a duPont-Columbia Gold Baton Award. He earned an MBA at Stanford and was a Morehead Scholar at UNC-Chapel Hill. Prior to Matter, he built Runway, a pre-team, pre-idea incubator for entrepreneurs at Innovation Endeavors, and taught design thinking innovation at the Institute of Design at Stanford University.

Kourtney Bitterly
Director of Partnerships (NYC)

Kourtney cares deeply about helping media organizations find new models for growth. She comes to Matter from Kickstarter, where she worked as an outreach consultant, having previously headed up Strategic Partnerships at theSkimm. Prior to that, she was part of the Business Development team at IDEO New York, using design thinking to envision the future of media with partners including HBO, MSNBC, and PBS. She’s a former journalist who booked guests and briefed Charlie Rose for interviews, and worked on talking points for Arianna Huffington. She is a Notre Dame alumna, and speaks fluent Spanish.

Liz Kopp
Space & Operations (SF)

Liz runs Space and Operations as Matter’s Office Manager. She studied International Development and Urban Planning at UCLA with a focus on transportation design. She interned at the legal branch monitoring the U.S. Department of Transportation, and also worked on Barack Obama’s first presidential campaign. Later she went on to work in appraisal operations and compliance. Before joining the Matter team she oversaw HR and Office operations at an edtech startup that uses design thinking to bring about change in school districts through personalized learning. There she honed the belief that culture and people are primary to how any system should function. Outside the Matter world Liz can be found building, crafting, making multimedia projects, and running in the park.

Josh Lucido
Director of Investments (NYC)

A New York City native, Josh joins Matter from Beautycon Media, a global community for content creators, where he was Director of Finance and Operations. He has a background in financial diligence, strategic negotiations, and startup operations. He has mentored entrepreneurs in the VR and entertainment/fintech spaces, and worked on business strategy with a mobile health startup in Kenya. Josh obtained his MBA at MIT Sloan School of Management, and began his career in production for ABC News and the Directors Guild of America. He’s a sometime hockey goalie and a chocolate milkshake aficionado.

Pete Mortensen
Director of Program (SF)

Pete hails from Midland, Michigan. Like many in the city, his grandfather was a chemist, but Pete set his sights on working in the print media from an early age. His degree courses at Northwestern University included Machiavellian Shakespeare and Literary Journalism. After a spell on a daily newspaper in Michigan, Pete moved to California’s wine country and covered rock/paper/scissor competitions. An Apple junkie, he went on to write for Wired.com and Cult of Mac and co-authored the award-winning book, Wired to Care. Prior to joining Matter in January 2016, Pete worked for innovation consulting firm, Jump Associates, and with an entrepreneurial team at Jetpack Consulting. Pete likes comic books, running marathons, hanging out with his baby daughter, and brewing dirty craft beer in his kitchen.

Roxann Stafford
Director of Program (NYC)

Roxann brings together the worlds of social impact and design thinking. In her previous role as Director of Design and Learning at the innovation agency SecondMuse, she worked with partners such as Google and the UN on issues from Internet Freedom to civic innovation and disaster relief. She has extensive international experience identifying big system problems in regions from the Pacific Islands to the Caribbean, and cultivating opportunities for entrepreneurship to solve those issues. Roxann has been named a tech innovator by NPR, for whom she is a commentator on diversity and innovation. She previously worked at Jump Associates, and has guest lectured at Stanford’s School of Engineering. She has an MBA from The Fuqua School of Business at Duke University.

Ben Werdmuller
Director of Investments (SF)

Ben is an entrepreneur and software engineer who has spent his career building platforms at the intersection of technology and society. He has a passion for open source development and respectful social technology. In 2014, he co-founded the social learning tool Known, which was part of Matter’s third accelerator program. Prior to that, he was a co-founder of Elgg, an open source social networking platform whose users included Harvard and Stanford Universities, NASA, and The World Bank. He was also CTO at Latakoo, an enterprise video software solution used by media organizations including NBC News. Before joining Matter, he worked on the technical team at Medium.

Partners

This is a powerful set of partners. More than half of the world sees news from the Associated Press every day. CNHI reaches more than 130 communities throughout the United States. A. H. Belo covers Texas with The Dallas Morning News and other media properties. McClatchy operates media companies in 28 U.S. markets in 14 states and owns iconic brands such as The Miami Herald, The (Raleigh) News and Observer, and The Kansas City Star. KQED has the most listened-to public radio station in the nation and is one of the most trusted brands in the Bay Area. Knight Foundation has leveraged its $2.2B endowment to become the leading institution supporting and connecting media innovators inside and outside traditional media organizations. PRX, named one of the world’s ten most innovative media companies, operates public radio’s largest distribution marketplace, offering thousands of audio stories for broadcast and digital use. Google News Lab joins Matter as its first technology partner, leveraging Google’s vast tech expertise and resources to double down on media innovation. Google for Entrepreneurs empowers entrepreneurs around the world through its programs, partnerships, and products. In more than 160 years of publishing, The New York Times has won more Pulitzer Prizes than any other news organization. Tamedia is Switzerland’s largest private media group.

Advisory Board

Andy Pergam

McClatchy

Jim Kennedy

The Associated Press

Matthew Ipsan

Community Newspaper Holdings, Inc.

Nicki Purcell

A. H. Belo Corporation

Steve Grove

Google News Lab

Shazna Nessa

The Knight Foundation

Tim Olson

KQED

Kerri Hoffman

PRX

Malcolm Casselle

Tribune Publishing

Nick Rockwell

The New York Times

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