The Garage
San Francisco

The Garage San Francisco is an initiative to build a community of Northwestern alumni working in Tech, Entrepreneurship, and Venture Capital in the San Francisco Bay Area.

The Garage's Alumni Hub

The Garage San Francisco is an extension of The Garage at Northwestern. The Garage SF provides programming, resources, and support for founders, operators, and investors in an effort to increase the clarity, collaboration, and connectivity for the Northwestern alumni who call the Bay Area home.

Our goal for The Garage SF is to create a “platform for serendipity” for alumni to support each other professionally and connect with others who have similar interests, job functions, and ambitions.

The Garage SF operates out of Northwestern University’s academic space at 44 Montgomery Street in the heart of downtown San Francisco. While the facility is primarily used for Northwestern’s immersive academic programming, it also serves as a world class venue for events and gatherings organized by The Garage SF.

By the Numbers


Northwestern alumni call the Bay Area home


Largest concentration of Northwestern alumni in the Bay Area, second only to Chicago


in our Network

Our Guiding Principals

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Collaboration focuses on fostering partnerships and mentorship by leveraging collective strengths through programs like the Entrepreneurs and Mentors in Residence.

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Clarity focuses on understanding The Garage SF's role and offerings in supporting alumni founders through educational programs and risk mitigation strategies.

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Connectivity focuses on creating a vibrant network among alumni founders, tech professionals, and investors through a directory, tailored programming, and networking events.

Upcoming Events

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Entrepreneurs in Residence

Our EIR's are early-stage alumni entrepreneurs that support initiatives and benefit from The Garage SF's programming, events, and opportunities.

Michael Gallagher
Co-Founder at Colorset

Michael is a '17 CS Grad of Northwestern University. He is a founder with a background as a Software Engineer, specialized in building AI and API products in the FinTech, Advertising and Geospatial Data industries. Now, he's building Colorset, a Geospatial Data Platform that creates data pipelines for user applications.

Connor Owens
Founder at Stealth Startup

Connor is a "double Wildcat" as a '16 grad of the School of Education and Social Policy and a '20 grad of Medill's integrated marketing communications program. He spent his early career tackling a wide range of challenges at big tech companies like Google, YouTube and Meta. Inspired to build product 0-to-1 in scrappier environments, Connor stepped away from work to pursue an MBA at Stanford GSB. While his first startup fizzled before it got off the ground, the thrill of entrepreneurship drove him to jump straight into his current venture. The startup is still in stealth mode but is focused on using AI to augment online marketplaces for peer-to-peer commerce. His team aspires to empower people to get better deals in the circular economy by increasing transparency, trust and ease of use. Outside of work, Connor loves traveling, cycling, spending time exploring the Bay Area with his partner, and reviving his flagging Mario Kart skills.

Nikhil Pai
Co-Founder at Hearth, Founder at
Stealth Startup

From 2016-2023, Nikhil was a co-founder of Hearth, a Series B fintech company helping home improvement contractors grow and manage their businesses. Hearth serves over 14,000 contractors and has raised over $60m. At Hearth, Nikhil played roles as the first engineer, head of product, and VP of Data, CS, and Revenue Operations. As of 2023, he's working on building a new project in the AI space. Outside of work, Nikhil is an avid cook (graduate of Le Cordon Bleu in 2023) and hiker. He lives with his wife, an NU alum working in ed-tech, and their 13-year-old chihuahua, Taco.

Daniil Vinokur
Co-Founder at The Omnivore

For the past 20 years, Daniil has helped develop captivating products, client-side for Salesforce and agency-side for Kellogg's, Hasbro, and Harley-Davidson. In that time, Daniil has worked with early-to-growth-stage startups as a mentor, advisor, and co-founder. Helping shape marketplace and D2C experiences transforming commerce and community. Now, at The Omnivore, he's creating an intelligent direct-to-consumer commerce platform for restaurants that will supercharge how fine-dining guests experience their favorite special occasion destinations. Daniil has worked extensively as a product design and strategy leader with and in the world's top design agencies and has built in-house idea incubators and innovation teams. He holds an MBA from Kellogg with a focus on Marketing, Strategy, and Entrepreneurship and a degree in Human-Computer Interaction from DePaul University.

Mentors in Residence

Our MIR's are highly experienced and senior professionals that offer specialized advice and mentorship in diverse domains such as PR, Marketing, Fundraising, Legal, and Growth to alumni founders, fostering practical learning and strategic support for alumni founders.

Alok Ranjan Singh

Alok is an experienced strategist and advisor with a passion for driving growth and innovation in emerging ventures. With a background in managing a portfolio of emerging businesses at Ericsson, as well as consulting roles at Accenture and strategic planning at Bosch, he brings a wealth of expertise in strategy, corporate development and solutioning. Armed with an MBA from Kellogg School of Management, Alok is dedicated to empowering startups to navigate their growth journey successfully.

Anthony Battle
Sales / Founder Self Care

Anthony has lived many lives. After playing D1 football at Northwestern while studying literature and philosophy, he travelled the world teaching english. He has since appeared in roles on television, served as a top Sales Executive and Breathwork & Mindfulness guide at LinkedIn, and is currently completing his graduate studies in Integral Counseling Psychology. He shares his voice, energy, and unique perspective, holding space for his clients to help them access their inner wisdom and ultimately lead healthy, happy, enlightened, and free lives.

Cameron MacArthur
B2B SaaS / Insurance

Cameron is the CEO of AI Insurance, which makes a modern software platform for running small insurance programs, captives and Risk Retention Groups. Cameron is a Northwestern graduate, and has been awarded for his research in human-computer interaction. With a background as a cognitive software engineer at IBM, Cameron is focused on bringing a data-focused approach to the insurance space so that companies can unlock the potential of AI.

Daniel James

Daniel is currently Head of Product and incubating a new business at proptech ReloShare, and was previously founder of Canopy, a fintech focused on protecting seniors from fraud. In a prior life, Daniel was a hedge fund trader, working at ABNAMRO and Goldman Sachs before making the switch into tech via Kellogg and then BCG. Daniel has been building in AI (ML, NLP, CV) since helping build the algo trading platform that made him redundant! He is a repeat founder, was formerly Head of Product at Capital One and cut his teeth in product at Zynga.

Eddie Chan
Operations / Strategy

With over a decade of experience across enterprise tech spanning Obamacare, Google, and YouTube, Eddie has deep experience deploying groundbreaking software technology on a global scale. AT LDV Partners, he is looking to invest in early stage startups in AI, Computing, and Robotics.

Jeremy O'Briant

Jeremy is the Founder and CEO of ProductLab, a market research platform based in San Francisco. Prior to that, he founded Torch, a growth marketing agency with clients including IAC, Postmates, IDEO, Uber, and several Y-Combinator startups. Jeremy has advised a number of startups over the years and generally is the most helpful in the zero to one stage helping with GTM strategy, product development, and growth marketing. He has extensive experience with digital marketplace businesses so he's also well versed in both B2B and B2C.

Joe Kleinschmidt
Founder / AI Product Strategy

Joe is a serial entrepreneur with a passion for leading high-performing organizations and creating simple, beautiful technology products that bring people together. The companies he's created include two AI-based digital assistants that helps organizations capture, organize, and surface key institutional knowledge. He also co-founded and served as CTO of Leverage Software, an enterprise social networking platform that was used inside numerous Fortune 500 companies. He believes strongly in the power of entrepreneurship and frequently advises early-stage startup founders.

Kara Smith
Product Management

Kara Smith is a seasoned Senior Product Manager with a rich background spanning 20 years in the technology sector, including consumer electronics, SaaS software, and innovation consulting. Presently, she oversees responder scheduling within the Incident Management vertical at PagerDuty, demonstrating her skill in managing SaaS solutions for large-scale enterprises. Kara's education is as distinguished as her career; she is an alumna of Northwestern University, where she completed both the MMM and MBA programs, blending her technical acumen with business savvy.

Kinsey Hart
Design / User Research

Kinsey has deep experience in customer research and business strategy and a passion for building products that customers need. Over the course of her career, she’s worked in executive operations at a PE backed marketplace business, founded a direct-to-consumer custom jewelry business, built out a new marketplace business at Upwork, and partnered with clients on strategic projects at Deloitte Consulting. She received her MBA and Master’s in Design Innovation from Northwestern. In her free time, Kinsey enjoys playing tennis, running with her puppy at the park, and finding the best almond croissants in San Francisco.

Mark Fleming
VC / Corporate Partnerships

Mark is an entrepreneur and venture capitalist with a background in public policy and global investments. Formerly advising U.S. senators and Fortune 500 CEOs, he now leads a venture studio that encompasses a venture fund and an omnichannel marketing platform. Mark also founded a company that helps content creators launch consumer businesses. His work focuses on empowering startups through venture capital and corporate partnerships, drawing on his extensive experience from the Senate to Alibaba’s Ant Financial Group to foster the next generation of entrepreneurs.

Ricardo Creighton

Ricardo is the VP and Head of Finance and Operations at Praxis Labs. Prior to Praxis, Ricardo was at Humu where he served as VP of Finance, helping the company raise more than $75M in capital. Prior to Humu, Ricardo was at Pinterest where he helped launch and scale SMB business to a $100M+ business unit and grow to $1B+ in revenue, leading to a successful IPO in 2019. Prior to Pinterest, Ricardo spent over five years in Strategic Finance at Google. Ricardo also serves on Management Leadership for Tomorrow’s (MLT) Bay Area Alumni Board and is a Venture Partner at NextGen Venture Partners.

Vik Ghai
Technology, Start-Up Fundraising

Vik is an experienced tech leader with over 20 years of expertise in developing cutting-edge security products. His skills span startup fundraising, capital management, operational budgeting, technology, and product strategy. He has a proven track record of driving revenue growth through cloud computing, open-source ecosystems, and the strategic use of AI, ML, and Generative AI. As a seasoned entrepreneur with two successful exits, Vik has also thrived as an advisor and investor, sharing his knowledge with tech startups.

Director of Entrepreneurship,
The Garage San Francisco

Keyaira Lock Adewunmi

Keyaira is a human-centric community builder who is eager to expand Northwestern's enterprising community nationally and internationally, starting with the SF Bay Area. With a specific focus on serving alumni founders, Keyaira is dedicated to nurturing a communal environment where innovation flourishes, business cultivation thrives, and Northwestern's entrepreneurial impact is recognized across Silicon Valley and beyond. Prior to joining The Garage SF, Keyaira operated as an intraprenuer in tech, including Twitter and Meta, to pioneer global initiatives that transformed market opportunities into millions in incremental revenue before achieving her MBA at Kellogg and founding her psychedelic consulting practice, Spice & Sage. Serving as a proud of the innovation economy, Keyaira looks forward to the cultivation of a vibrant entrepreneurial ecosystem that elevates everyone involved.


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