Chris Rizik is the Chief Executive Officer and Fund Manager of the Renaissance Venture Capital Fund, a venture capital fund of funds formed by a consortium of several of Michigan’s largest organizations. Chris is also a co-founder, partner, and Board chair of nanotechnology holding company Ardesta, LLC, and was a Managing Director of Avalon Technology fund, then Michigan’s largest venture capital fund and the recipient of four consecutive “Deal of the Year” awards by the Michigan Venture Capital Association.
Prior to joining Avalon, Chris was a senior partner with Dickinson Wright PLLC, one of the Midwest’s oldest law firms. He also passed the Certified Public Accounting examination and worked at PriceWaterhouse Coopers. Chris is also the founder of SoulTracks.com, America’s most popular soul music online magazine. Chris currently serves as a member of the Executive Committee of the Michigan Economic Development Corporation and the Advisory Board of the Detroit Medical Center. He is a member of the board and past Chairman of NextEnergy, the State of Michigan’s advanced energy economic development organization and accelerator, and serves on the boards of the innovative First Step Fund, the Michigan Venture Capital Association, TechTown, Leadership Detroit, U of D Jesuit High School and several venture capital funds. In early 2010, Chris was named by Crain's Detroit Business magazine as one of its "Newsmakers of the Year" for his leadership role in the advancement of venture capital and entrepreneurship in Michigan.
There is little doubt that Silicon Valley has taken a reputational hit in 2017, partly as a result of the media’s usual star-making and -breaking process, but mostly through self-inflicted wounds.... Read more »