Lindsey Taylor Wood, Founder & General Partner
Over the last decade, Lindsey has built and run two companies, including The Helm’s operating company and first two funds. A proven operator and investor, she has invested in some of the country’s best women-led companies, including Tia, who last year raised a $100M Series B. She is a leading voice and thinker in the gender-lens investing space with an extensive and diverse network. As The Helm’s Founder and a GP, she directs the Fund’s strategy, fundraising efforts, sources and diligences deals, and supports a growing portfolio.
Under her leadership, The Helm has grown to include two venture capital funds, a 100+ -woman angel syndicate, more than 20 portfolio companies, and a newsletter readership of 50K. The Helm was also home to a robust content and commerce platform, which was acquired in 2021.
An expert in the empowerment of girls and women, prior to The Helm, Lindsey founded LTW, an impact studio with an emphasis on contemporary feminism. Clients include actor Matt McGorry, MAKERS, The Conversation with Amanda de Cadenet, The Harnisch Foundation, Women Moving Millions, and filmmakers Jill Bauer, Ronna Gradus, and Rashida Jones, among others. In partnership with these clients, LTW designed and implemented a wide range of programs, products, and systems, including funding mechanisms and mentorship programs for media makers, content strategies for films and television programming, philanthropic strategies for family foundations, and social impact campaigns. Her ability to use philanthropy and culture symbiotically, and with a gender lens, has made her a sought after strategist in the women’s rights movement.
Prior to consulting, Lindsey was on the founding team of Catapult, a crowdfunding platform for girls and women. Incubated as a project of Women Deliver, Catapult was designed to establish and maintain a sustained, long-term funding infrastructure capable of scaling to many thousands of projects and delivering millions of dollars in funds to benefit girls and women over the next decade. While there, she led the marketing, communications, and outreach initiatives. Lindsey also worked for Women Deliver, a leading global advocate for girls’ and women’s health, rights, and wellbeing — and among the first organizations to promote the investment case for girls and women. Cornerstone projects of her time there included the Women Deliver 50 Campaign which showcased the top 50 ideas and solutions for women and girls internationally and the training of youth advocates from 11 countries throughout sub-Saharan Africa as part of an invitation-only regional consultation in Kampala, Uganda with government officials and agencies, policymakers, researchers, experts, and advocates focused on achieving the United Nations’ Millennium Development Goal 5.
Pre-NGOs, Lindsey worked with the Broadcasting Board of Governors, where she explained U.S. policy to Voice of America’s worldwide audience through editorials broadcast on television, radio, and the internet; acted as an off-air reporter and producer for the TODAY show; and as the External Relations Manager for The Lunchbox Fund. She has contributed to a variety of campaigns centered on conflicts in Central Africa, as well as “The Enough Moment,” a book by John Prendergast and Don Cheadle. She has been named one of the 20 Young Champions for Women by The White Ribbon Alliance for Safe Motherhood, currently serves on the Feminist.com Board of Directors, and advises the Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art at the Brooklyn Museum.
Julie Weber, COO & General Partner
Julie has fifteen years of private and public sector experience in global media and advocacy, internal communications, project management, fund administration, and operations.
As a GP in Fund II, Julie has also acted as interim CFO, coordinating all fund administration, accounting, financial reporting, and legal activities. She sources and diligences deals, builds The Helm’s ecosystem, and supports a growing portfolio. She’s been with The Helm since the launch of Fund I in 2018, where her support has included fund administration, reporting, sourcing deals, investor relations, and platform and portfolio support.
As COO of The Helm’s holding company, Julie oversaw day-to-day operations across all business lines and managed HR, accounting, legal, and all other operational activities. Under her leadership and in partnership with the CEO, the company scaled from a team of two to a team of 12, rolling out a robust e-commerce marketplace with more than 100 women-founded companies and thousands of skews. She led the successful acquisition of the platform in 2021.
Previously, Julie worked with Catapult, a crowdfunding platform that funded gender-lens development projects. There, she met The Helm’s founder Lindsey Taylor Wood, where they began a long and successful working relationship. Julie spent her early career with the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and in her various roles in both internal and external communications, she executed large-scale, high-profile international initiatives, developed key partnerships, and connected diverse teams and stakeholders inside and outside of the organization. As the Communications Focal Point for the H4+ (UNAIDS, UNICEF, UNFPA, UN Women, WHO, World Bank), Julie worked closely with the Secretary General’s Every Woman Every Child initiative; a global movement that mobilizes and intensifies international and national action to address the major health challenges facing women, children, and adolescents around the world. In her role as Managing Editor of the internal organizational online news magazine for UNFPA, she reported on internal news and activities for the information of more than 2000 staff stationed in 165 offices around the world. She is especially proud of her early work with the Campaign to End Fistula, which brought a debilitating injury of childbirth to global attention through public awareness and advocacy campaigns, events, press briefings, and outreach. Among other initiatives, she coordinated a press trip to northern Nigeria and a media campaign targeting the United States Congress held on Capitol Hill.
Julie holds a Masters Degree in Gender, Development, and Globalisation from the London School of Economics, where she focused her studies on exploring the gendered intricacies of post-conflict, post-cold war societies and their implications on women, peace, and security.
Olivia Fleming, Partner
Olivia brings more than a decade of journalism and digital editorial experience to The Helm, with a deep knowledge and expertise in Climate & Sustainability Solutions. As Partner, she sources and diligences deals for Fund II, leads the Fund’s sustainability vertical, and manages our angel investor network, overseeing diligence and platform, digital, editorial, events, and communications-related activities for our founders and our wider community. Her inherent, journalistic instincts to build relationships, do deep research, understand the narrative, and ask tough questions, have made for a seamless transition into the world of venture.
Olivia first joined The Helm in January 2020 as Head of Content, where she built a robust content platform that capitalized on gender-lens investing trends and conversations around women and wealth, launching several female founder and funder-focused franchises that offered exclusive insight into the trials and tribulations of building game-changing companies from the women founding and leading them. Today, Olivia ensures The Helm’s content platform not only facilitates deal flow—giving female funders access to easy and trusted funding opportunities—but actually helps to propel the success of the women we invest in, cementing The Helm as a leader in the female founder space.
Prior to her role at The Helm, Olivia was the Features Director at Harper’s BAZAAR, where she led strategy and programming for large-scale digital projects—including long-form features, ambitious packages, video, and podcasts—that elevated BAZAAR’s content mix across platforms through female storytelling around women’s rights and global climate solutions. Her commitment to comprehensive women-led storytelling in America’s oldest fashion magazine helped to grow the online readership from 11 million to 25 million, with many of her stories sparking national conversations. Utilizing her connections in the media, PR, and creative industries, Olivia also launched Hearst’s first podcast, Dare I Say, a politically-driven series hosted by Olivia Wilde featuring intimate conversations with heavyweights like Jane Fonda, Gloria Steinam, Patrisse Khan-Cullors, Olivia Wilde, Evan Rachel Wood, and Laverne Cox, which drew in significant advertising sponsorship, as did her signature franchise, Women Who Dare.
Born in New Zealand, Olivia was raised with the basic belief that women are imperative to leading a successful, progressive country (two female prime ministers took office during her childhood). After moving to New York in 2008, she realized that her home country’s status quo was at odds with the rest of the world, so she set out to tell the untold, female-led stories that legitimize women’s duel interest in fashion and human rights, ultimately compelling company leaders, politicians, and organizations to tackle issues around gender equality. It is this commitment to female storytelling and brand-building that has distinguished The Helm as the premier platform to bring you the most compelling and innovative female-founded companies, tell you why they matter, and connect you with ways to fund them directly.
Prior to BAZAAR, Olivia was the Executive Style Editor at The Village Voice. With a Bachelor of Journalism from the Auckland University of Technology, Olivia has written for publications like T Magazine, Elle, Vogue, The New York Observer, Interview magazine, and more. She currently sits on both the Environmental Conservation Commission and the Investment and Preservation Commission of Marbletown, New York.
Penny Abeywardena, Pilar Guzman, Kathryn Minshew, Pat Mitchell, Arlie Sisson, Gail Tifford, Jamia Wilson