The Lighter Capital Team

Meet the people who are here to help you get the funding you need to grow your business. The best way to get hold of us is to email us and we will make sure the person who can best help gets back to you fast.

BJ Lackland, CEO

BJ Lackland
Chief Executive Officer

BJ Lackland joined Lighter Capital as CEO in 2012. BJ has spent his career working with emerging technology companies as an operating executive and investor. He has been a venture capitalist, the CFO of a public technology company, an angel investor, and a senior finance and marketing leader at tech startups.

Before joining Lighter Capital, BJ was a consultant to early stage technology companies, an active member of the Northwest Energy Angels, and the CFO of Power Efficiency Corporation, a publicly traded energy efficiency technology company. Earlier in his career, BJ spent five years as the Vice President and Director of Summit Energy Ventures, a venture capital fund focused on investments in energy technologies, where he completed numerous equity and debt investments in public and private companies. Before becoming a VC, BJ was the Director of Strategic Relations at EnCompass Globalization, a provider of software globalization and e-commerce services, and was the Director of Strategic Planning and Corporate Development at webStrategic, a business development software and consulting company. BJ also worked at The National Bureau of Asian Research, a bipartisan think tank focused on U.S. economic, political and security policy toward Asia.

BJ received an MBA from the University of Washington’s Foster School of Business, an MA in International Studies (China Studies) from the University of Washington’s Jackson School of International Studies, and a BA in Politics, Philosophy and Economics from Claremont McKenna College.

Marketing & Business Development

Rob Belcher, Vice President

Rob Belcher
Vice President

Rob Belcher leads the business development efforts at Lighter Capital and has been instrumental in developing revenue-based finance best practices.

Rob has 12 years experience in investment banking, venture capital and consulting. He has managed a consulting effort to develop cost competitive, sustainable aviation biofuel for Qatar Airways, vetted new investment opportunities and supported existing portfolio companies for west-coast venture capital firm Voyager Capital, provided transaction advisory services for outdoor industry companies at Silver Steep Partners (acquired by D.A. Davidson) and was an energy analyst at Edinburgh, Scotland-based research and consulting firm Wood Mackenzie, Ltd.

Rob has an MBA from the University of Washington and a BA in Economics from Colby College.

Patrick Doherty, Senior Director Marketing & Digital Strategy

Patrick Doherty
Senior Director Marketing & Digital Strategy

Patrick joined Lighter Capital in August 2013. He has over 25 years experience in marketing and communications working primarily in financial services and the investment management industry in the USA, Australia and Asia.

Patrick has consulted on strategic marketing, branding, digital strategy and business development for leading investment brands and professional services organizations in the USA and Australia. He has also worked extensively with the start-up community. Patrick was Director of Marketing for Russell Investments US Advisor and Retail business. As Head of Marketing for AMP Capital he built and led the marketing and communications team supporting Australia, New Zealand and Asia.

Patrick has a Masters of Communication in Digital Media from the University of Washington and a Bachelor of Business (Marketing) from Charles Sturt University in Australia.

Erik Thompson, Senior Director Marketing

Erik Thompson
Senior Director of Marketing

Erik Thompson joined Lighter Capital in January 2014. He is a marketing technologist with 18 years of experience in marketing and product development.

Erik was previously Director of Marketing Operations at Solavei, where he oversaw digital marketing infrastructure & operations, email marketing strategy and analytics. Before that he held management roles in Strategic Planning and Marketing Operations at SonoSite, Inc. Earlier in his career Erik was a lead product development engineer at The Boeing Company, and was involved in several major flight test programs.

Erik holds an MBA from the University of Washington's Foster School of Business and a BS in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Michigan.

Investment and Servicing

Molly Otter, Vice President

Molly Otter
Vice President

Molly Gregg Otter joined Lighter Capital in 2013 as Chief Investment Officer and VP of Credit. She has over 11 years of experience as a lender working as a generalist across all segments of the capital structure.

Molly was previously a Vice President at AEA Investors LP. Molly joined AEA as part of the initial founding of the Debt Group in 2005. During her tenure at AEA, she served as member of both the Mezzanine and Senior Debt teams and was involved in over 25 portfolio investments. She has previously worked at American Capital Strategies, a business development corporation, and GSC Partners, a private equity firm with investments vehicles which served the High Yield and distress debt industries. Molly received her M.Sc. from the London School of Economics (2004) and a B.A. in history with a minor in Economics from Dartmouth College (2000).

Jodi Paulson, Accounting Manager and Servicing Manager

Jodi Paulson
Accounting Manager and Servicing Manager

Jodi Paulson joined Lighter Capital in March 2013. Jodi has over twenty years of experience in corporate office management. During the past 10 years, Jodi has specialized in asset management and private fund accounting. Prior to joining Lighter Capital Jodi, held various positions as Operations Manager for a real estate investment firm, providing accounting services for 9 companies and closing 100+ private real estate loans. She was also an Investor Relations Manager for a securities development firm, in which she prepared and closed over $350 million as tenant in common security transactions and provided asset management for 12 residential property investments.

Jason MacArthur, Associate

Jason MacArthur
Associate

Jason MacArthur joined Lighter Capital as an Associate in 2013. He assists the deal team with investment analysis, due diligence, and investment recommendations.

Prior to joining Lighter Capital, Jason was a member of the Treasury team at a local bank. He helped manage a $550 million fixed-income portfolio, conducted M&A analysis and due diligence, managed portfolio loan pricing, and performed various derivative valuation, balance sheet management, and capital planning and forecasting activities. Jason also has experience in equity research, portfolio management, and financial planning.

Jason graduated summa cum laude from Washington State University (2011) with a BA in Finance, and a double minor in Entrepreneurship and Economics. He is a CFA Candidate, having consecutively passed all three levels of the CFA exams, and is a member of the CFA Society of Seattle.

Engineering

John Roper, CTO

John Roper
CTO

John Roper has more than 18 years experience in software engineering and technical leadership. He is the veteran of two fortune 500 companies and five software startups, and has been awarded three patents.

Before Lighter Capital John was a Principal Software Engineer at eBay Inc., where he lead a team developing technologies that combined machine vision features with traditional text based features. He was awarded two patents for this leading edge work. Prior to eBay, John was employee number one at Positronic Inc., a machine learning quantitative hedge fund, where he developed natural language technologies to determine sentiment of publicly traded entities using unstructured data. Positronic was acquired by eBay Inc in 2008. Before Positronic John was the Software Architect at Judy’s Book Inc., an early web 2.0 product and service review startup, where he oversaw all aspects of the technology, from back end database to front end user interface design. Earlier in his career, John spent five years doing enterprise software design at Microsoft corp. where he lead a team developing secure stored value systems, machine learned categorization of data, and building scalable back end systems for MSN Shopping. While there, John was awarded a patent for his pioneering work on ad display systems.

Raj Datta, Principal Engineer, Platform

Raj Datta
Principal Engineer, Platform

Raj has over 14 years of experience in the software industry. He prides himself having had developed, designed & managed teams for tiny start-ups to large enterprises. He started his career as a developer for a Commodities broker in Lake Tahoe. Since then he has accumulated a considerable amount of experience building software for finance related products in various industries.

Most recently Raj served as the Director of Software Engineering at Buck (dba: Billing Revolution, Inc) an innovative Mobile payment company a pioneer of secured user-friendly web checkouts. At Buck was responsible for building the next generation of remote-payment mechanisms for web and Android platforms, building bank-grade security for storing and transporting payment data.

Raj has a Bachelor's Degree in Commerce from St. Xavier's College, Kolkata, as well as a Bachelor's in Computer Information Systems from University of Nevada, Reno.

Lexine Pishue, Lead User Interface Developer

Lexine Pishue
Lead User Interface Developer

Lexine is a self-taught web developer with over 14 years of experience in front end development. She began as an intern with Kinetic Books Inc., where she moved into a full time position to help develop the interface for the company's first two browser-based textbooks.

She's got a strong background in user interfaces, with specialties in javascript, CSS and browser compatibility.

Board of Directors

Erik Benson

Erik Benson
Board Member

Erik joined Voyager Capital in 1998 where he focuses on SaaS, Cloud Computing, Big Data and Marketing Analytics. He currently represents Voyager on the boards of directors of Act-On Software, Chirpify, Covario, Elemental Technologies, Lighter Capital, Lytics and Zettics. Erik was previously responsible for Voyager¹s investments in aQuantive (acquired by Microsoft), Capital Stream (acquired by HCL Technologies) and Kryptiq (acquired by Surescripts). Prior to Voyager, Erik was an investor for Seattle-based WRF Capital after leadership roles at Mimix Inc., a pioneer in the area of motion capture and animation software for the gaming industry. Erik started his career in New York for a predecessor bank to JPMorgan Chase, advising and financing private equity clients. Erik earned a BA in economics from Pacific Lutheran University and an MBA with honors from Harvard Business School.

Rob Martin Board Member

Rob Martin
Board Member

As Managing Partner and Portfolio Manager at Summit Capital, a globally focused, multi-strategy investment firm located in Seattle, Washington, Rob spends most of his time scouring the globe for investment opportunities, connecting with and funding fellow entrepreneurs and investment managers seeking to build and support long term sustainable businesses in growth markets.

In tandem with his broader duties at Summit, Rob manages the private markets investment program at the firm. Summit has deployed capital to over fifty companies and firms operating within industries ranging from agriculture, specialty finance, clean technology, digital media and real estate as well as to broader middle market businesses globally. Rob serves on the boards of directors of Lighter Capital, GADCO Coöperatief U.A. and Uptap Games.

A former securities analyst covering the digital media industry, Rob started his career in 1995 at Friedman, Billings, Ramsey, an Arlington, Virginia based investment bank and institutional brokerage firm. In 2002 Rob co-founded Martin Investment Group (MIG), a predecessor company which merged with Summit Capital in 2006. Rob holds a BA in Political Science from Temple University and an MBA in Finance and Investments from George Washington University.

Rob lives in Issaquah with his wife and two children. He is an active member of St. Joseph School and Parish of Issaquah, serving on the long term planning committee. Rob is also involved with various organizations supported by Summit, including Habitat for Humanity and Team Gleason, among others.

Andy Sack, Executive Chairman

Andy Sack
Executive Chairman

Prior to Lighter Capital, Andy was the co-founder and CEO of Judy’s Book, a local search social network. Prior to founding Judy’s Book in 2004, Andy co-founded three successful Internet technology companies: Kefta, a leading provider of real-time customer interaction solutions (acquired in 2007 by Axciom); Abuzz, an enterprises knowledge management solution (acquired by New York Times Digital in 1999); and Firefly Network, an Internet company that pioneered internet personalization technologies (acquired by Microsoft in 1997). Andy also spent time as an entrepreneur in residence for SOFTBANK Venture Capital (now Mobius VC).

Jeff Seely, Board Member

Jeff Seely
Board Member

Jeff Seely founded and was Chairman and CEO of ShareBuilder Securities, one of the largest online brokerage firms in the US. The company reached over $50M in revenues and was sold to ING Direct for $220 million in 2007. Jeff is currently a trustee on the Washington State Investment Board, which oversees more than $70 billion of pension assets for Washington state employees, and a member of the board of directors of Redmond-based Concur (Nasdaq:CNQR), a company focused on employee spend management software. Jeff also previously served as the CEO of Recruiting.com (formerly known as Jobster, Inc.) from 2008 to 2010. Earlier in his career, Jeff spent 15 years in investment banking at Robertson Stephens & Co., Dean Witter and Smith Barney, where he focused on financings, IPOs, and mergers and acquisitions for financial services firms and consumer businesses. Jeff received an MBA from Columbia University and a BA in economics from St. Lawrence University.

Investors

Summit Capital

Managing approximately $600 million in assets, Summit Capital is a fully independent Registered Investment Advisor focused on providing clients with a responsible approach to comprehensive asset management. Founded in 1996, Summit Capital’s core investment philosophy is an opportunistic, value-oriented approach centered on preservation of capital, provoking solid risk-adjusted returns in all market environments.

Voyager Capital

Voyager Capital is a leading West Coast information technology venture firm that provides entrepreneurs with the resources, experience and connections to build successful companies. Voyager invests primarily in early stage, digital media, software and services, wireless and cleanIT companies, where the firm's domain expertise, and go to market and team building resources help build market leaders. Voyager Capital has $370 million under management with offices in Seattle, Washington; Portland, Oregon; and Menlo Park, California.